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Q: How would you define the word "charedi" (as in the group of people) and what makes one part or not part of this particular group?

A: The word "chareidi" literally means "someone who fears [G-d]". It is a derivation of the term "Edah Hachredis", a Rabbinic council (Rabbanus) created in 1920 in Eretz Yisroel by Rav Yosef Chaim Sonenfeld and Rav Yitzchok Yeruchem Diskin ZTL, because they opposed the newly established (Zionist) Rabbanut of Yerushalayim and Eretz Yisroel (of which Rav Kook had just accepted the position of Chief Ashkenazi Rabbi).

The term was used to describe those who oppose Zionism and modernism. It began in Eretz Yisroel and slowly became used world wide.

There are really no requirements or official qualifications to be a "chareidi". It not really an official movement or philosophy per se. It’s more a description of those who follow the default version of Judaism the way it was practiced for centuries, without the additives of Zionism or Modern Orthodoxy.

The term "Chareidim" only came into existence when and because Zionism and modernism did, as a description of those who rejected all the newfangled labels and philosophies and remained loyal to the Orthodoxy that had no label & was practiced before those "isms" or any labels were created.

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