Daily Israel Report

Rabbi: Eyal Golan Affair – a Warning for Religious, Too

Rabbi of Kiryat Shmona reacts to Eyal Golan affair, says it proves the society must invest in the youth: ‘The religious are not immune.’
By Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 11/21/2013, 3:00 PM

Rabbi Tzfania Drori
Rabbi Tzfania Drori
Arutz Sheva

Rabbi Tzfania Drori, the chief rabbi of Kiryat Shmona, reacted Thursday to the news that singer Eyal Golan has been accused of having illegal sexual relations with teenage girls.

Rabbi Drori spoke to Arutz Sheva about the affair, and warned that similar things can happen to girls from religious homes.

“These girls were from a difficult background… This happens to us in religious society, too. Where children are in an unhealthy home, they can fall into trouble very quickly,” he warned.

“The teenage years [lit. “stupid years” – ed.] are very dangerous,” he continued. “A person moves beyond the innocent [childhood] world and begins building themselves. It’s a dangerous time when people shake off their parents’ authority.”

The response, he explained, must be good education – which is needed in both the secular and religious communities.

“A school, whether it is religious or not, must give its students a creative mindset that uses intellect to seek out good… This isn’t about religious youth or irreligious youth, it’s about how to work with youth – something that needs to start at a very young age and continue until age 18,” he said.

“If society does not realize that investing in youth means investing in development, in the internal drive to be better, we will end up in a bad place,” he warned. “The religious are not immune – anyone can fall if they aren’t striving for good.”

When asked if he had a message for youth, Rabbi Drori said, “If you don’t strive to move upward, you will fall down. A person who does not strive for more, falls.”

Musicians in particular can be at risk, he noted. The Rambam warned that singing and music can enflame desires, he said. “There are people who use music to achieve holiness and to develop a pure imagination,  but even so, the Rambam said that if it does not lead to holiness, the singer is drawn to [earthly] desires,” he explained.