December 3, 2018
A few young men from the Haredi Yeshiva Tiferet Ha'Talmud on Mount Scopus in Jerusalem, under the leadership of Rabbi Brachiahu Shinkar, decided to wear tzitzis (fringes) with techelet (azure thread) and were suspended from the yeshiva, Kikar Hashabbat reported Sunday.
The Torah commands the use of a pale blue or azure thread among the white tassel threads. The techelet was also used to paint part of the tabernacle and also as a component of some of the priestly garments. The use of techelet for dyeing the fringes of the tzitzit ceased as early as the Geonic period (6th to 11th centuries), as were the traditions related to the making of the techelet. In the late 19th century, several attempts were made to reconstruct the original techelet color, and together with these attempts began a polemic with questions about which is the blue crustacean used to make the techelet paint, and whether it is possible to revive the use of techelet in the tzitzit.
The yeshiva students began studying the laws of tzitzit and decided to switch to techelet, and some of them even began wearing the tzitzis with the techelet outside their shirts. The yeshiva leadership did not view this favorably, and suggested there is a tradition in the yeshiva world of how a student must dress. Some of the students were suspended for a few days.
The Mashgiach (supervisor), Rabbi Shlomo Peli, told Kikar Hashabbat that the yeshiva leaders are absolutely opposed to wearing these tzitzis.