I want to commend Rabbi Shammai Englemayer on his December 23 column entitled “A Matter of Substance.” It seems to me that Rabbi Englemayer has it exactly right when he writes, “stop falling back on ritual as the end all of Torah observance and start paying attention to the totality of Torah.”

A perfect case in point is the December 30 Jewish Standard article on the charedi violence in Beit Shemesh. I cannot understand the thought process of those involved and of those who condone their actions. One would think that we, of all people, would have learned that extremism and violence are not our way and are a dangerous precedent.