Conservative and Orthodox Halacha


Generally speaking, what is the difference in halachic methodology between orthodox rabbis (like Joseph Soloveitchik or Mordechai Eliyahu) and conservative rabbis like Saul Lieberman and Elliot Dorff for how they make responsa?



  1. The differences are remarkably simple. Orthodox Judaism does not veer away from the Halacha at any point. The only method used in defining Halacha is the Torah, itself. The minute a person issues rulings that are not based entirely on the sanctity and the methodology of explaining the Torah, whatever rulings are being issued are not Halachically valid. The moment that foreign elements are added into the methodology, everything that emanates from it is no longer pure and authentic.

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