Former Chief Ashkenazic Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau said, Monday, that it was not the way of Judaism and the Torah to set one's self on fire, as in the case of financially-troubled Moshe Silman at a social-justice demonstration in Tel Aviv, Saturday evening. Interviewed on Kol Berama radio, Rabbi Lau, who currently serves as Tel Aviv's chief rabbi, said, "What happened on Saturday night is a tragic, terrible and shocking form of violence. May G-d protect and save whoever would make the story of Moses Silman their banner and symbol."
The rabbi made it clear, "The ends don't justify the means. This is a most terrible and spoiled path, that a person hurts himself. This is violence." He concluded, "I am not judging his actions but they are not to be seen as an example." Silman was reported near death, Monday morning.