I had a discussion a few days ago with someone from the iWorship listserve about how I think ArtScroll is pretty far to the right of most Modern Orthodox Jews. I told him that I think Koren is a much more moderate siddur and that it’s catching on because it is more in line with how more MO Jews think.
I just got the new Expanded ArtScroll Siddur Wasserman Edition. They go on and on about how the typesetting is more modern that old one. I find it just as obnoxious and crammed as the original. I got it because it has some new material in it to supplement the good ol’ stuff and it’s got a new introduction and overview section–and I go nuts for those things.
Anyway, I was just starting to digest it today when I discovered a case in point about the rightward lean of ArtScroll: pages and pages of prayer for holy places in Israel. I know that no one is with me on the Western Wall as idolatry issue, but this includes special prayers to be said at the Wall, Rachel’s tomb, the Cave of the Machpelah and Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai’s tomb.
I don’t think prayer at the graves of the holy dead is mainstream. Unless I’m just fooling myself here. Which is possible. But seriously. Idolatry. I’m just saying.