As the year has progressed, we are at the point when, as individuals and as a group, we’ve pretty much settled into a routine. We have our learning projects, and know what we need to do for our classes. This past weekend, our comfortable yeshiva habits were upended, to make way for the sudden influx of over sixty other fellows from past summers. Those of us involved with the yeshiva will sometimes joke about the “Hadar Bubble,” and how isolated we sometimes feel from the wider world. This weekend I sat in a roomful of people who converged on Manhattan from across the US and beyond, each of whom had dedicated one summer to Torah study, and spread their experiences throughout the world. We shared Torah, compared our different versions of the same private jokes, and debated which summer had it rougher. If I may be so alliterative, it was a weekend of reverence and of revelry.
In his closing remarks, Rav Shai reminded us that the biggest form of heresy is to see the world as it is, and in response shrug your shoulders and say “well, that’s just how things are.” Hadarniks came together this weekend to remind each other that together we are working to create something big. The bubble popped.