Posts Tagged ‘Minhag Eretz Yisroel’

Oberlander Ashkenaz Rebbe: Rav Yochanan Schreiber-Sofer of Erlau zt”l – אדמו”ר נוסח אשכנז-אוברלנד: רב יוחנן סופר מערלוי זצ”ל

February 26, 2016

We wrote in the past about a Polish Rebbe that davened nusach Ashkenaz, but that was some time ago. In recent days the frum press has been writing about another “Rebbe” who davened nusach Ashkenaz as well, along with his kehillah. We are writing, of course, about אדמו”ר מערלוי, ר’ יוחנן סופר זצ”ל, who was niftar just a few days ago.  The Erlau (or Erloi) Rebbe, R. Sofer, like R. Shmuel Wosner zt”l, who’s lesser known Ashkenaz side was discussed here a while back, was actually from, and part of, the Oberlander Hungarian nusach Ashkenaz community, which is not so well known to outsiders, and is often confused with other groups.

For R. Sofer, this background, being a descendant of the great Chasam Sofer, towering iconic leader of Hungarian Jewry, particularly the Oberlander segment of it (after moving to Oberland from Germany), was very important, and he worked hard to make sure it continued. עד כדי כך, that not only did he issue many seforim of Torah from משפחת החתם סופר זצ”ל,  his kehillah faithfully kept the nusach hatefillah of the Chasam Sofer and Oberland, נוסח אשכנז. Even more so, Erlau even wears tefillin for morning davening on חול המועד openly, בפרהסיא, in ירושלים עיה”ק at their בית מדרש, as per their ancestral minhog (as is done in a number of other congregations in ארץ ישראל as well, contrary to popular belief). No gartel either. Interestingly, many people considered him a Chasidic Rebbe nevertheless, despite such ‘infractions’.

May the zechus of clinging to the מסורה of Oberland stand in his merit, and may his descendants and talmidim continue in that special path.

 

Minhag Ashkenaz? Where’s The Uniform(ity)? FAQ #1

June 24, 2011

VARIANTS = NO MINHOG?

Question: How can you speak of מנהג אשכנז, when all Ashkenazic areas did not have totally identical minhogim? Even in Ashkenaz proper (Germany), not all places followed the same practices in all matters. Can there be a minhog without absolute uniformity in a place?

Answer: This question implies that if there is any variation within a territory, there can be no such thing as that place having a מנהג (a notion that might kill just about all such notions of minhogim if taken to it’s logical extreme).

WHAT ABOUT ‘MINHAG ERETZ YISROEL’?

Before proceeding further, I would like to note the irony that some of the people putting forth the above question, at the same time, when it comes to Eretz Yisroel, claim that there are such things as ‘minhag Eretz Yisroel’ and ‘minhag Yerusholayim’, and therefore people can’t put on tefillin there on Chol Hamoed, say ברוך ה’ לעולם at תפלת ערבית, etc. Now the fact is that ארץ ישראל has much variety in מנהגים. Yet still, they don’t let that get in their way, and continue to maintain that constructs of  מנהג ארץ ישראל and מנהג ירושלים nevertheless exist at present. Anyone else notice an inconsistency?

WHAT ABOUT VARIANTS IN MINHAG SEPHARAD?

Anyway, getting back to the question, I ask those who raise this point the following. Anyone familiar with Sepharadic minhagim knows that there is wide variation among them. Catalonia didn’t have the exact same minhagim as other parts of Spain. Moroccan minhagim are not identical with Turkish ones. Amsterdam and London Sepharadim differed from those in Eretz Yisroel, Syria, Baghdad…etc. So perhaps there is no such thing as מנהג ספרד?

VARIANTS IN PRACTICE OF YIDDISHKEIT IN GENERAL – HOW DO THEY FIT IN?

People can take this logic further as well. They can ask, hey, how can you say there is a תורה שבעל פה, a מסורה in Yiddishkeit in general, if we see variations among frum groups? If presence of some variation is such a problem for people, it is not just a problem for מנהג אשכנז. It is a problem far beyond that. A problem for our faith in general.

LOSS OF KNOWLEDGE DUE TO PERSECUTION AND EXILE

The answer is, that the absence of a totally universal and absolutely uniform mesorah for every detail nowadays is not necessarily indicative of lack of a מנהג.

We know that over time, and with the vicissitudes of גלות, things have been forgotten. Even as far back as the time of mourning for מרע”ה, thousands of הלכות were lost.

So now, in brief, this is the situation of מנהג אשכנז today (as I have understood from רבש”ה).

MINHOG ASHKENAZ IN ANCIENT TIMES

מנהג אשכנז is an ancient and holy mesorah, which goes back to the time of the churban Beis Hamikdosh, as stated by גדולי אשכנז (such as the רא”ש,  רבינו אשר בן יחיאל ז”ל).

The heartland of מנהג אשכנז was along the Rhine river, in the area of the famed ancient Jewish settlements at Worms, Shpeyer, and Mainz – וורמייזא, שפירא, ומגנצא.

MIGRATIONS AND DEVELOPMENT OF VARIANT CUSTOMS

Over time, due to persecutions and other factors, people migrated from there to newer communities, but, at times, the traditions did not fully survive these moves. Some minhogim were forgotten or changed over time, in the new places. Not having phones and computers, they could not call back home every time they had a question.

On the other hand, in the older communities, where there was greater continuity, and less disruption due to migration, the old מנהגים were generally preserved better.

The further away in time and space one got from the ‘alter heim’, the old communities of Ashkenaz, the more there was a loss of certain traditions (this doesn’t necessarily mean in very major ways, it could be in relatively small details), and the new communities developed their own ways of doing some things, at times at variance with the old minhog. After a while, מנהג אושטרייך (minhag Austria) developed in this way, as a variation from the Rhineland minhag Ashkenaz. The word Oestereich is made up of Oest (East in English), and Reich, which means realm. They were quite similar to minhag Ashkenaz overall, but had lost some of it along the way. Later מנהג פולין developed from מנהג אושטרייך.

Some communities excelled in keeping the old מנהג אשכנז relatively intact, one particular stellar example being Frankfurt am Main.

ASHKENAZ IN THE MODERN ERA

As time went on and people moved further away, there was more and more loss of the old מסורות. But people still called themselves Ashkenazim and knowledgable ones still realized their roots and connection to the old Ashkenaz along the Rhine. Masses of people however, lost touch with their roots, to the point of forgetting where their ancestors had migrated from in the old Ashkenaz, centuries earlier.

In the modern era, newer Jewish communities like Berlin, in northern Germany, far from the Rhineland, followed minhag Polin and not the ancient minhag Ashkenaz, having been settled by migrants from the newer areas.

THE APPROACH OF MMA AND THIS WEBSITE

Now since we are speaking here of מנהג אשכנז, which is the older and more venerable mesorah of which the רא”ש and other gedolim wrote, the fact that there were parts of (modern – the old Germany was not the same as the current nation-state) Germany where the later developments of minhag Oestreich or minhag Polin were followed, is not relevant, as the goal here is to preserve the more ancient minhag Ashkenaz specifically.

Machon Moreshes Ashkenaz, although researching and discussing various Ashkenazic practices, is especially interested in identifying and following the old minhag Ashkenaz (which most of the time is basically the same as minhag Frankfurt am Main). It keeps the old מסורות alive, בעזרת השי”ת, by preserving and disseminating them, ע”פ הדרכת גדולי אשכנז. This website basically follows that path as well.

Consumer Alert: Minhog Scammery On The Rise! Mislabeled, Cheap Middle Eastern Imports Flooding In, Threatening To Overwhelm Natives!

June 15, 2011

One of the more difficult challenges we face in keeping the holy minhogim of our Ashkenazic ancestors is posed by present day unrestricted imports from Eretz Yisroel, of Sepharadic minhagim posing as Ashkenazic ones.

With so much travel these days between Eretz Yisroel and the diaspora lands, instant worldwide communication, so many youngsters as well as more mature students studying in the Holy Land, and massive amounts of Judaica produced in and exported from there, we are faced with a virtual invasion of foreign customs.

As we have touched on in the past, many Ashkenazic Jews in ארצנו הקדושה, whether due to past compulsion or present proximity, practice some questionable Sepharadic minhagim (actually they may not be really Sepharadic, but for descriptive ease, I am referring to them that way now), that are not in accordance with their heritage.

When people are aware that practices are not from or in accordance with the holy מסורה of אשכנז, they can more easily be on guard against their infiltration. But when they are depicted as Ashkenazic, and even more so, from the holy Ashkenazim of  ארץ ישראל, the people that some think have a constant virtual halo around them, especially if they are of the ירושלמי variety, people can let their guard down and think that they are 100% acceptable for Ashkenazic Jews. But it ain’t so. The minhogim of the אשכנזים in חו”ל (the diaspora) are actually often more authentic and accurate than those of their cousins in Eretz Yisroel.

So first and foremost, people have to be alerted about this dangerous phenomenon. And then hopefully they will take steps to counter this dangerous fad, and reject the foreign adulterated customs, בעזרת השי”ת.

I will list here a few examples of such dangerous foreign imports, the mislabeled practices that need to be exposed for what they are, Sepharadic minhagim posing as Ashkenazic minhogim. Some of them have been written about previously, while others will perhaps אי”ה will be the subjects of future posts.

1) Chalaka (a word of Arabic origin), also known as Upsherin in Yiddish.

2) Bonfires and other questionable Lag Baomer activities. I wonder if there is a relationship between the widespread Lag Baomer bonfires in Eretz Yisroel and the new problem of an outbreak of Charedi juvenile pyromania there. השם ירחם.

3) Expanded version of the last part of Rosh Chodesh Bentching, starting with יחדשהו, as we have touched on in an earlier post. סידורים from ארץ ישראל can be vehicles for spreading such foreign nuschaos. Hey, the בני ארץ ישראל need to make a פרנסה, I know they sell siddurim overseas, but if they want to sell them to us, they can make them according to our מנהג.

4) Kaddish after Krias HaTorah being given to any aveil, rather than being said by the בעל קריאה, as per the classical minhog.

5) Cheap Judaica trinkets, e.g. Sepharadic/Oriental Shivisis and Hamsas. The former are sometimes purchased by well meaning people and given to Shuls, where sometimes unwittingly they are accepted and hung, usually at the amud, despite being against Ashkenazic practice. The latter may be hung or worn by individuals.

6) Finger pointing (pinky or other) at the sefer Torah during hagbah. The minhag Ashkenaz is to bow toward the sefer Torah then, an earlier recorded minhog mentioned in the Shulchan Aruch, a gesture of reverence and respect toward the holy Torah. But now one sees quite a few people in some places doing the easier finger pointing which lacks the type of giving of kavod to the Torah that bowing shows.

7) Hallel in Shul on Pesach night. Minhag Ashkenaz is only to say it at the seder later.

People have to be aware of this serious problem, take a stand, and refuse to go along with the adulteration of our holy Ashkenazic heritage, which happens when people accept such customs. And then אי”ה we will be hopefully be able to get the אשכנזים of ארץ ישראל to go back to their old minhogim, ולשלוח המנהגים הנכריות , and return to the ways of their ancestors before they came under foreign influences.

יה”ר שנזכה לכך בב”א, ובזכות השבת מנהגי האבות החביבים והקדושים אל הבנים נזכה ל”והשיב לב אבות על בנים ולב בנים על אבותם” בקרוב, אכי”ר

Hallel in Shul on Pesach night – Understanding the basis of the מנהג אשכנז to refrain – מדוע א”א הלל בבית הכנסת בליל הסדר בפסח לפי מסורת אשכנז

April 18, 2011

(An important post from a few years ago, improved and updated, and moved to the front page for review, as Seder night approaches)

Singular Hallel, for a singular evening, or a duplicated Hallel? 

All proper Jews say הלל, praising הקדוש ברוך הוא, on פסח night, during the סדר. This joyous recitation is one of the highlights of the evening. Some others, however, recite it a second time that night as well, in Shul. It is the latter custom, to do a double recitation of Hallel, and the stance of מנהג אשכנז toward it, that is the subject of this posting.

A few years ago, I received a booklet of circa seventy pages from מכון מורשת אשכנז on the topic of הלל בבית הכנסת בליל פסח. It was a greatly expanded version of the chapter on the subject in שרשי מנהג אשכנז חלק א (app. fifteen pages), by רבש”ה, of ten years earlier.

It is a very thorough treatment of the subject from various angles, that shows very clearly, based on ancient (as well as more  recent), classical sources, that הלל on פסח night is, according to our holy מסורה, properly recited only at home, during the seder, בשעה שמצה ומרור מנחים לפניך, and not a second time in Shul at night as well. I highly recommend it.

For those who are not clear about the issue, and don’t have access to the aforementioned booklet, I will write some words, a combination of what I saw there, mixed with some of my own thoughts.

Looking at the Sources

The practice to say Hallel in Shul, in addition to the recitation at home during the seder, is not mentioned in the גמרא. It is contained in what is referred to as מסכת סופרים, a later compilation of teachings that were deliberately excluded from the גמרא, that is not on the level of the Talmud, where it is mentioned for people who were not learned (yes, believe it or not, not everyone learned in ישיבה and כולל for many years then ;-), and could not be relied upon to say it properly on their own, at home during the seder.

The רמ”א states clearly that we don’t say it. The משנה ברורה and ערוך השלחן do so as well. Interestingly, even the שלחן ערוך הרב, authored by the first Lubavitcher Rebbe, states that ‘we do not read it in Shul in these countries’ in his code of law (though in his siddur, which was made for his Chassidim, he says to do so).

Yemenite minhag not to duplicate Hallel on seder night

Also worthy of note is that Yemenite congregations that hew to their ancient minhog, mostly those categorized as Baladi, also do not say it.

What did the GRA, the Gaon of Vilna, do?

Some claim that מנהג הגר”א is to say הלל in Shul on Pesach night. However, that is not listed as a practice of the Gaon in the well known work מעשה רב, which records his minhogim. If the Gaon would have said Hallel in Shul, in opposition to the general minhag Lita around him, it would have certainly stood out and been sufficiently noteworthy to qualify for inclusion there. That omission speaks volumes. What seems to have happened is that some of the פרושים in ארץ ישראל  got it from the local ספרדים, among other non-Ashkenaz practices such as chalaka/upsherin, saying אין כאלקינו daily, and an expanded version of יחדשהו in ראש חודש bentching, for example, as when they settled in ירושלים circa two centuries ago, they were not permitted to have their own Shul for some time by the government, and had to daven with the ספרדים in order not to stand out. The ספרדים then were dominant there, and they had to subjugate themselves to them, and try to blend in.

Gedolim who said Hallel only once on seder night, even after moving to Eretz Yisroel 

Staunch advocates of the ancient Ashkenaz tradition not to duplicate Hallel on that night who came later on to ארץ ישראל, when אשכנזים were able to practice their faith and מנהגים more freely, rejected this anachronistic, submissive stance to Sepharadic (later Sepharadic – early Sepharadic practice in Spain didn’t have it either, but that is another discussion, עיין שם) practice, and maintained the מנהג אשכנז of saying it only once, during the סדר. For example the גרי”ז, Rav Velvel Soloveichik, whose refraining from saying הלל in Shul then was well known (שו”ת תשובות והנהגות חלק ב, סימן רמ”ה, הגש”פ מועדים וזמנים, ירושלים תש”מ, עמוד נ-נא), and the דעת סופר, Rav Akiva Sofer of Pressburg.

It seems quite ironic that at the very outset of the חג הגאולה, during זמן חרותינו, the festival of freedom, when ב”ה we are free to practice our ancestral faith, some people still slavishly follow a practice that some of our brethren were compelled into doing, in opposition to their ancestral מנהג. Presumably they just don’t know what the background of the matter is.

Another big problem with it to me, on an experiential level, in addition to all the other issues, is doing the same thing twice on one night. People should rather do it once correctly. Doing it twice the same night diminishes the experience.

If one finds themselves in a place where Hallel is duplicated, how should one act? מעשה רב ממרן הגרי”ז זצ”ל

Another angle to this issue, that should be addressed, is the situation that arises at times when people whose minhog is not to say it, are davening where they do say it. Sometimes such people are cajoled (by themselves – or imagine feeling so, perhaps a figment of their imagination? – or others), and convinced into believing that they must join the recitation, with the argument that it is not proper to be פורש מן הציבור. However, in that regard, they should know that when the Brisk’er Rav, the גרי”ז, was in such a situation, he would exit, and go to another room (סדר הערוך לרמ”י וינגרטן, פרק כח, הערה 16).

להבחל”ח הגאון ר’ שמואל קמנצקי שליט”א, the Gaon Rav Shmuel Kamenetsky shlit”a, has paskened that if someone who follows Ashkenaz minhog in this is in a place where Hallel is said, he should leave unobstrusively – and furthermore, if he cannot do so, he should recite Tehillim during the Hallel – but not Hallel itself!

The trend of continually adding on new things, at the expense of the old, is not recommended. As חז”ל teach us,  כל המוסיף גורע – whoever adds, subtracts. On the other hand, the one that follows the minhog of his holy אשכנז ancestors, is הולך בעקבי צאן קדשים, and is הולך בטח, striding securely in the steps of his forefathers.

In the zechus of following the מנהגים of our holy ancestors, may we be זוכה to have a meaningful and proper יום טוב.

Rosh Chodesh bentching controversies – חילוקי דעות ומנהגים בברכת החודש

April 1, 2011

לכבוד שבת מברכים ר”ח ניסן התשע”א הבע”ל

ברכת החודש, aka Rosh Chodesh bentching, has, in the last few centuries, grown greatly in size, and been transformed from a short tefilloh into a a great and elaborate part of the davening, in many places.

The major change was made by taking a tefilloh from the gemara, תפלת רב, starting with the words יהי רצון מלפניך (from תלמוד בבלי, ברכות טז,ב, near bottom, see here), which is not related to Rosh Chodesh there, adding a few words to the beginning related to rosh chodesh, and making it the opening of that segment of the davening. Over time, it became a main focus of chazonim and chazonus, and of women who came to Shul for rosh chodesh bentching.

But not everyone has gone along with the changes. Gedolei olam like the Chasam Sofer, Noda biYehudah, and the Gaon of Vilna, opposed the incorporation of tefillas Rav there. It is not seen in the (original – later versions have been greatly altered, and even transformed from nusach Ashkenaz to Sfard, as has been done with other siddurim as well, such as siddur Chasam Sofer, a subject perhaps for later discussion) siddur that Rav Yaakov Emden issued either. They held that since we know that it is not permitted to ask for individual needs, such as פרנסה – livelihood, on Shabbos, being that תפלת רב contains many such requests, it was not appropriate for recitation then. And it was not there before, so why change things and add it, if previous generations didn’t? So the מנהג אשכנז, in places like Frankfurt a Main, the renowned bastion of ancient minhog, was not to say it. למעשה, as רבש”ה pointed out in a shiur, we see sometimes that people get very emotional during ראש חודש bentching, even to the point of crying. Especially women perhaps (if one is allowed to say that nowadays ;-). And some chazonim get into it like that as well. However, that is a big problem, since people are not supposed to cry on Shabbos! Shabbos is a time of שמחה!

רבש”ה also related interestingly that once a woman came to his Shul to daven on Shabbos mevorchim, and afterward was very scared that she would not live through the month, since they didn’t say the tefillas Rav which asks for חיים ארוכים. It didn’t occur to her that people that stick to that old nusach omitting it, have ב”ה been doing so for centuries, and, בחסדי השי”ת, continuing בחיים.

But that was not the only place where this issue arose לגבי שבת מברכים. It also manifested itself later, at the end of Rosh Chodesh bentching. After the חזן proclaims aloud when Rosh Chodesh will fall, the ציבור proceeds to say the short tefilloh of יחדשהו הקב”ה עלינו ועל כל עמו וכו. The נוסח אשכנז version of that tefilloh ends with the words לחיים ולשלום, לששון ולשמחה, לישועה ולנחמה ונאמר אמן, while a Sfard version is longer and contains בקשות for things like פרנסה, רפואה, וגשמים בעתם. As above with tefillas Rav, the latter version is viewed as more problematic by nusach Ashkenaz, due to the issue of שאלת צרכים בשבת. Therefore, people who stick carefully to nusach Ashkenaz, do not accept the longer Sfardishe nusach. This is the predominant minhog in חו”ל. In Eretz Yisroel, some people believe erroneously, that to say the longer nusach is incumbent upon them due to an alleged ‘מנהג ארץ ישראל’ (re which see here). In the famous Lederman Shul in Bnei Brak, however, they do not say it. Rav Chaim Kanievsky שליט”א explained, in the name of the Chazon Ish, that they conduct themselves that way because it is assur to be marbeh in bakoshos on Shabbos (לוח ארש מהדורת אוצרנו תשס”א, דף תר)

. א גוטען שבת און א פרייליכען חודש

Minhag Eretz Yisroel – What is it? Who is the mara de’asra in Eretz Yisroel? מיהו המרא דארעא קדישא?

March 11, 2011

Rafi, of the fine Life in Israel blog, recently reported about a very interesting case, related to a phenomenon of some Sepharadim adopting Ashkenazic practices. He mentioned the position of Chacham R. Ovadia Yosef shlit”a, that Rav Yosef Karo, aka מרן, Maran hamechaber of the שלחן ערוך, is the mara de’ara (halachic authority) in Eretz Yisroel.

I would like to share with you some thoughts that I heard in a talk by Rav Hamburger about this inyan, who discussed from a minhag Ashkenaz viewpoint, the inyan of מנהג ארץ ישראל, and also touched on the issue of מנהג ירושלים as well.

This is an edited rendering from my notes, not an exact transcription. I cannot guarantee every word, but I attempted to transmit the basic ideas properly.

I want to re-analyze what is מנהג ארץ ישראל. I am living in Eretz Yisroel over fifty years, I don’t know yet what is מנהג ארץ ישראל.

He goes on to describe a street in Bnei Brak. “… there are אפשר seven apartment houses of twelve apartments each and fifteen shuls. And each Shul is different. This is a Bukharan shul, this is a Yemenite, this is Sfardi,…this is the Kuzhmirer, this is the Spinker, and everything…” ……. two brands of Spinka…. now we’ve got three Vizhnitz in Bnei Brak….This is (a singular and unitary) מנהג ארץ ישראל?

He goes on to talk about מנהג ירושלים :

מנהג ירושלים, this is considered to be the epitome of מנהג ארץ ישראל. Rav Shlomo Zalman (Auerbach זצ”ל) told (a relation of his) that I have a kabboloh, from Rav Dovid Baharan, Rav Dovid Baharan was a poseik in Yerusholayim, az ‘oib einer vet kumen tzu eich un vet zogen dos iz minhag Yerusholayim, zolst vissen, er iz a ligener, veilst s’iz nisht doh kein מנהג ירושלים’ (there is no single [unitary] minhag Yerusholayim).

Farvos iz nit doh aza zach (Why not)? Who was the first Yerushalmi? …..דוד המלך. He conquered the place…….. His minhogim, besides saying Tehillim………I don’t know of from his minhogim a link to מנהג ירושלים.

After that, we have a more detailed account of minhog Yerusholayim, which is Talmud Yerushalmi. ..מנהג ירושלים. You can’t have much more ירושלים than the תלמוד ירושלמי. And after that, we have the Mustarbim, the old people that were left in Eretz Yisroel after the churban. You know what the Mustarbim are? I explained it yesterday to my audience. You have American Jews. You have Hungarian Jews. An Ingarishe Yid. A Deitche Yid. A Moroccaner Yid. You have, a Poylishe Yid. There was a term of ’Arabishe Yid’. An Arabishe Yid. In today’s terms it doesn’t sound politically correct……they used to call it, in (the) Middle East, in Arabic, must’arab. Musa is Moshe Rabbeinu. Moshe Rabbeinu, Musa. Abu Musa. Musa Arab. Must’arab. So these are the old Eretz Yisroel’dike Yidden, which remained after the time of the churban. But they were am horatzim. Their minhogim were taken from (elsewhere, from) the Rambam. They took everything from the רמב”ם. Later on, the Beis Yosef, after the big exile of the Spanish Jews, they had the בית יוסף coming to צפת, and we had the אריז”ל coming to Tzefas. And from now on we have two trends. Some people go by the Beis Yosef and some people go by the Arizal. Look at Rav Ovadiah Yosef. He has such a struggle. ….. He goes by the בית יוסף, the others (among Sepharadim/Eidot Hamizrach) go by the אריז”ל……

And after that came a Yid, a Frankfurt’er Yid gradeh, של”ה הקדוש, he was the Rav of Frankfurt, and, he had his own minhogim. He accepted from the Sepharadim three or four minhogim which he counts in the beginning of his sefer, his siddur Shaarei shomayim. שערי שמים is a siddur which the Shelah composed in Eretz Yisroel because ארץ ישראל is shaar hashomayim. So the סדור של”ה is an Eretz Yisroel’dike siddur, and there he has got tefillin (wearing on) chol hamoed, he has got boruch Hashem leolam amein viamein, he has all these things. It didn’t occur to him that because it’s ארץ ישראל he has to do Sfard’ishe minhogim.

So what’s מנהג ארץ ישראל so far? We have Mustarbim, Arizal, Beis Yosef, and the Shelah.

…..Shpeter zenen gekumen (later came) תלמידי הבעל שם טוב…They didn’t do any of their minhogim (going by) the Sepharadim. Efsher here and there, but generally not ….The Baal hatanya, anyway, the בעל התניא took the Arizal as his model…..The Chassidim did not accept the Sfardishe minhogim. Okay, besides a few things that fitted… the חסידים and the ספרדים are not exactly identical in minhogim. Very far from it. And later on came, after them, came תלמידי הגר”א. They (generally) did what they liked, what fit what the Gaon did. So you have all kinds of walks of life, all kinds of communities.

(In more recent years) when people of Ashkenaz origin came to Eretz Yisroel, they have been told ‘this is minhog Eretz Yisroel’. (The minhog of the) פרושים…… (But) The (Vilna) Gaon himself was never in Eretz Yisroel. Why is he the master there then? Why not the Beis Yosef? Why not the Arizal? Why not the Mustarbim? Why not the Rambam? The רמב”ם is considered מרא דארעא דישראל by many people still. The Rambam was niftar here, he was brought here. The (Vilna) Gaon never came here. So there are many question marks, what’s minhog Eretz Yisroel. And limayseh, if you walk around, in ירושלים, in בני ברק, in every town, you find all walks of life (different eidos, kehillos, shitos)

עד כאן

So basically there are different shitos about who is the מרא דארעא קדישא.