Ohr Somayach Leader in “Rehabilitation” After Assaulted for Philandering

thumbnail.jpgRabbi Furman established a “very successful” branch of Ohr Somayach (a quiescent fundamentalist outreach organization) in Johannesburg, South Africa, and was the head of Ohr Somayach Savoy until the shit hit the fan.
The Times (of South Africa) reports,

Amid a growing scandal, Rabbi Lewis Furman of Johannesburg, who was also a family counsellor and international speaker, is believed to have left South Africa for Israel where he is undergoing “rehabilitation”.
Furman — who is alleged by congregants to have been a “serial philanderer” — was forced to resign his position in South Africa and will not practise as a rabbi in this country again.

Of course, the haredi powers that be have insisted it is forbidden to talk about this scandal, and the Jewish newspapers in South Africa have so far declined to discuss this story. But…

“outraged members of the Jewish community, speaking on condition of anonymity, have accused the Rabbinate of “sweeping the matter under the carpet” and failing to be “transparent” about it.
They say Furman had a reputation as a “serial philanderer” who was caught out when he mistakenly sent an incriminating SMS to the wrong person.
Furman was apparently then confronted and assaulted by a cuckolded husband.

Still, the important things it that Rabbi Furman has the right hashkafas (philosophical and political outlooks). That’s why his tapes are still available from Ohr Somayach. Like this one on “Yetzer Hara – Friend or Foe?
Update: Failed Messiah connects the dots — South African Chief Rabbi Warren Goldstein who dismissed allegations as “unfounded speculation,” and attempted to silence discussion within the South African Jewish community (but still negotiated Furman’s exit) worked for Ohr Somayach.

11 thoughts on “Ohr Somayach Leader in “Rehabilitation” After Assaulted for Philandering

  1. Another day and another coverup of one more immoral rabbi by his corrupt colleagues. The blankets are getting awfully thick.

  2. And your point here in swiping at an entire group of Jews (based on a newspaper report) is….what exactly?

  3. Kelsey is not swiping at an entire group of Jews. As you can see the jewish community there is outraged, and rightly so. They are not the problem. I am familiar with the South African community and they help one another, are mostly in the middle of the religious spectrum, and do not typically adhere to the silly labels we in the US love to stick on people. If the allegations here are true it is a monumetal day of tragedy.

  4. > What “entire group of Jews” is Kelsey swiping at?
    Pious posturing clerics who are simultaneously serial philanderers. Why indict the whole group for the actions of one individual?

  5. Eric, What “entire group of Jews” is Kelsey swiping at?
    Well: the entire Ohr Somayach system, “fundamentalist outreach organizations”, the “haredi powers that be” (insert Manchurian Candidate music here…) and the South African rabbinate for starters.
    Again, if this is true it would be an act of gross misconduct by one man. It is not about abuse or anything else. It’s about one man who might have had a forbidden relationship with a woman. OK. Why should the South African rabbinate or anybody else be expected to give over salacious details–if they exist at all–to hungry newspapers?
    I ask again: what is the purpose of devoting an entire posting to this one newspaper article and leveraging the story to try to implicate and slam entire groups of people?

  6. Eric misquotes me as attacking “fundamentalist outreach organizations.” This is false. I said organization. Singular. Specific.

    “Again, if this is true it would be an act of gross misconduct by one man. It is not about abuse or anything else. It’s about one man who might have had a forbidden relationship with a woman”

    No. It is about cover-up, dismissal and denial by the highest ranking official rabbi of South Africa man who shares a connection to Ohr Somayach. And if this man was innocent, then not standing up publicly to the “unsubstantiated” accusations but rather, facilitating his quiet escape and promising he would not practice as a rabbi (in South Africa) was immoral and cowardly. The only normal way to understand this is that the Chief Rabbi does not, in fact, believe him to be innocent at all.

    “It is not about abuse or anything else.” I guess it depends if you (or your wife) is respectively the one being hit on or the one being fucked by a supposed religious leader, and then having your accusations dismissed and a Jewish media black out demanded. Overly sensitive souls might consider such behavior an abuse of the rabbinate, particularly when the head rabbi is connected to the institution, and not just the rabbi, being protected.

  7. DK, neither you nor I know anything about this supposed case aside from an article in a newspaper. Neither you nor I have any clue whether this involves “cover-up, dismissal and denial” by anybody about anything.
    Yet you ascribe to yourself the power to not only make a conclusive judgment about this man but also about his colleagues and associates, along with the organizations they work in (i.e. “haredi powers that be”) as well. It is clear from your writing that you wish us to draw conclusions about not only those things but also about the ideology that you assume many of these people hold. Remarkable!
    You claim “The only normal way to understand this is that the Chief Rabbi does not, in fact, believe him to be innocent at all.” I have no idea if that’s true and neither can you because none of the actual facts are available aside from the newspaper article. You are making a series of factual and moral judgments about a man, many people, and entire institutions based on nothing other than a very thin behavioral profile that doesn’t address the specifics of this case at all.
    A broader question is that even if this is true why do you feel the need to trumpet it (a male having an extramarrital affair is not exactly a new phenomenon) and to go even further by seeking to impugn the many people that this man worked with? Don’t you think you’re taking things a bit far considering that you have nothing but a single article to go on?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.