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Rabbi Alt merited to learn under the tutelage of R’ Mordechai Friedlander ztz”l for close to five years. He received Semicha from R’ Zalman Nechemia Goldberg ztz”l. Rabbi Alt has written on numerous topics for various websites and publications and is the author of the books, Fascinating Insights and Incredible Insights. His writings inspire people across the spectrum of Jewish observance to live with the vibrancy and beauty of Torah. He lives with his wife and family in a suburb of Yerushalayim where he studies, writes, and teaches. The author is passionate about teaching Jews of all levels of observance.
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Dogmatic about his Dog
A Torah scholar, R’ Yitzchak, that was involved in kiruv that resides in Eretz Yisrael would travel to various cities and try to bring secular Jews closer to Hashem. One day while he was driving, he heard people screaming. Confounded, he brings his car to a halt where he discovers that he drove over a dog, killing it. It was the dog owner, Yosef, that was screaming at him. R’ Yitzchak apologized profusely, telling Yosef that it was unintentional. He then told Yosef, “I am willing to pay the value of the dog and I’ll even give you extra money for all the distress.”
Yosef was astounded, as such behavior was an anomaly. The response and offer of R’ Yitzchak was a Kidush Hashem. Yosef declined R’ Yitzchak’s monetary offer and he exchanged phone numbers with him. R’ Yitzchak began to learn with Yosef and little by little he made an impact on him and his family.
One day Yosef proposed an offer. He told R’ Yitzchak that he has a big basement and him and his wife wanted to donate this basement to be sort of a Beis Midrash where R’ Yitzchak would give a shiur that people would attend. However, the family wanted to put a plaque with the words l’zichron Igor, as a remembrance to their dog Igor, who was the cause of all this.
The question posed to a posek if it was appropriate to dedicate and call the Beis Midrash after a dog. After researching the topic by looking up the relevant sources, the posek deliberated and came to a conclusive ruling: Since the will of the family is to observe Torah and mitzvos and to this end they are willing to dedicate this Beis Midrash, it is ok to acquiesce to their request to name it after their dog.