"When the soul shines, the darkest of skies radiate light" (Rabbi Kook)
Beit Harav - בית הרב
Saving Beit HaRav Kook - the Cornerstone of Religious Zionism
Your help is urgently needed. Please take a few minutes to read about Beit HaRav.
The Story of Beit HaRav
Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaCohen Kook , Israel's first Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi, created the ethos of Religious Zionism, the spiritual voice of the Zionist endeavor.
Torah giant, world renowned halakhic decisor, Kabbalist and charismatic leader, he stood out among his fellow Torah Sages in his love for Israel's secular pioneers, seeing them as part of the process of Redemption.
In 1923, at Beit HaRav, his modest home near Haneviim Street in Jerusalem, he established the flagship yeshiva of Religious Zionism, Merkaz HaRav, so that the Jewish state would fulfill the prophecy: "Torah will come forth from Zion…" - and the sound of Torah study soon echoed from Beit HaRav.
Rabbis and intellectuals, public figures and political leaders all met at Beit HaRav to consult with Rav Kook on the serious issues facing the Jewish people. He was a unifying factor among the factions of the pre-state Zionist movement, and Beit HaRav was a lighthouse of Torah study, courage and faith in the upward climb towards statehood.
Later on, the greatly expanded yeshiva moved to a large building in Kiryat Moshe, where its tens of thousands of students continue to be the main source of Religious Zionist Torah study, leadership, education and settlement in Israel.
Why your help is needed:
Beit HaRav became a site where pupils and visitors come to see the saintly leader's home, see how he lived and learn about his life.
But this cradle of religious Zionism and the cornerstone of the Merkaz HaRav Yeshiva, is now in danger unless it becomes a place of Torah study once again. It is situated on a plot of land that has become downtown Jerusalem, and is threatened by real estate interests.
The building was granted to Rabbi Kook for use by those "who continue his heritage" and therefore, in order to save it, must be an active and ongoing place of learning for what he called "the Torah of Eretz Yisrael" in addition to being the showplace of his life.
In order to save this spiritual landmark, a group of dedicated Torah scholars - all IDF reservist graduates of Merkaz HaRav Yeshiva and imbued with the spiritual strength of Rabbi Kook's Torah - led by Rabbi Avraham Sylvetsky, close student of Chief Rabbi and Rosh Yeshiva Rabbi Avraham Shapira, zts"l, have established Kollel Beit HaRav. Every evening they make their way to Haneviim Street, spending many hours lighting up the center of Jerusalem with Torah in the very Beit Medrash in which Rabbi Kook prayed, taught and learned.
They need your help to be able to continue, to grow and to reach out to their surroundings with classes, programs, lectures and especially for the planned kiruv work, so needed in the area.
Help us save Beit HaRav – help it become alive once again as a beacon for the study of Torah and its dissemination in the welcoming, loving ways of Rabbi Kook.
How to Help: Donations in US dollars are IRS tax deductible.
Checks should be made out to: Friends of Mercaz Harav Kook and sent to:
American Friends of Merkaz HaRav Kook
c/o Meyer Apfeldorf
870 East 27th St.
Brooklyn NY 11210, USA (Please write For Beit HaRav on the check)
To dedicate a shiur (lecture) and study period in honor of an occasion or in memory of a loved one, please write to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Message from the Rosh Yeshiva of Merkaz HaRav: May all who help Kollel Beit HaRav be blessed. By enabling the Torah study of the Land of Israel they are continuing Rav Kook's legacy in the center of Jerusalem and ensuring that future generations will be able to visit the cradle of Religious Zionism.
Rabbi Yaakov Shapira, Rosh Yeshiva of Merkaz HaRav, Kiryat Moshe, Jerusalemv