Avodah Mailing List

Volume 04 : Number 122

Monday, November 8 1999

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 17:59:30 EST
From: Pawshas@aol.com
Kol Kevodah vs. Hatzneia Leches

I wrote, regarding "Kol Kevodah":
> >Why isn't it an extension of "veHatzneia Leches Im Elokecha," of acting in 
>  >"demure" (I despise that word, but it's the closest I can find in 
>  >manner, in general?

To which Chana Luntz responded:  
>  Because we derive halachic implications from this eg:
[Halachic ramifications of "Kol Kevodah" clipped]
>  Each of which applications are not applied to men, despite them also
>  fitting within the obligations of vehatzenia leches.

This is why I termed it an "extension" of "Hatzneia Leches." The underlying 
principle is the same, but "Kol Kevodah" adds a point which applies 
specifically to women.

To expand:

Hatzneia Leches implies that a person's relationship with HaShem should be a 
personal one (Rashi Michah 3:8); it says little about one's general behavior, 
and it says nothing about the spotlight. See Succah 49, which makes this very 
clear with its examples of Hachnasas Kallah and Hotzaas haMeis as Mitzvos 
which should be performed with Hatzneia Leches. As the Gemara points out, 
these are very much "spotlight Mitzvos." Hatzneia Leches only demands a 
personal, private relationship with HaShem.

Kol Kevodah, on the other hand, places an emphasis on actually being away 
from the sight of others (Rashi Tehillim 45:14, and others there). This does 
not necessarily refer to being indoors, but it does mean staying out of the 
spotlight, as a general course of behavior (see Avodah Zarah 18a, Rashi there 
sv Dikdekah - it is clear that the problem is not with being in public, it is 
with being in the spotlight).

Is this clearer?

Mordechai Torczyner
HaMakor! http://www.aishdas.org/hamakor Mareh Mekomos Reference Library
WEBSHAS! http://www.aishdas.org/webshas Indexing the Talmud, Daf by Daf
Congregation Ohave Shalom, Pawtucket, RI http://members.tripod.com/~ohave

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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 15:03:09 -0800 (PST)
From: harry maryles <hmaryles@yahoo.com>
Re: cholam=choilem=cheilem=chaulem=melo-foom

--- Yzkd@aol.com wrote:
> I always thought that the reason we say three times
> Kodosh is to be Yotzei 
> Kol Hadeios Kodoish Kodeish and Kodosh :-)
> Kol Tuv
> Yitzchok Zirkind

You left out "Kodauwsh"  (chaulem - Yekke) :)

I haven't really been following this thread but it
seems Pashut to me that the most correct
pronounciation of the Cholem is the American Havarah -

"Oy" would be "Cholem - Yud"
"Ey" would be "Tzeray"
"Ow" would be "Cholam - Shuruk" 



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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 17:49:55 -0500
From: richard_wolpoe@ibi.com
Rational Kabbalists

he Maharal might be my number 1, did I omit him?

Rational - it's hard to define.
Here are some snynonyms:

Comfortable with scientific type methods

Those who follow Star-Trek will see that Mr. Spock completely subjuages his 
emotions to logic yet he also engages in "Vulcan" mysticism.

by irrational mystics I refer to those who use mysticism as "magic"  Utter a few
choice phrases, create a kamea, etc.  

A ratioanl mystic would send a sick person to a doctor unless he was acutely 
aware of a definite spiritual root of a given disease.

An irrational mystic might cure the disease by magic (eg fixing a mezuzo).

There is overlap of course.

Mysticism as I define it is the attempt by humans to bridge the gap to G-d.  
your persona nad psyche will predispose you as to HOW you create that bridge.

If you are a highly acutalized rational person, you will seek that bridge as a 
transcendental aporach to G-dliness....

If you are a highly emotional peronsal you might seek it out of sense of void or
spiritual deprivation.

If you are an unhealhty person, you might seek a bridge to G-d as a form of 
escpate from this world as opposed to seeking G-d from a position of strenght 
you come from a position of weekness.

Arbo'o nichnesu lefardes.  As we see, certain weaknesses may have disposed 3 out
of 4 to terminate their quest "abnormally" (akin to a computer abend)

R. Akivo was ok.

When RSBY tells us to abandon pasnosso and let hashem do it for us, that is 

When R. Kook allows a ha''arom to allow the land to be worked udring shmitto it 
is THIS wordly.  R. Kook was a mystic but he did not invoke a series of Ovinu 
Malkeinu's to rain Mon from teh shomayim to obviate the need for pasonoss during

The Vilna Gaon didn't call down mal'ochim from shamoyaim to teach him a blatt 
Gemoro (maybe a dvar kabbolo perhaps).

Rational Kabbalists are comfortable with the worlds of science and the 
tangential gashmiyus world and transcend it.  Irrational kabbalists deny this 
world as much as possible, and seek to avoid it.

Sound familiar?  yes, rational kabbolists are another form of syntheisis, 
synthesis of this world and the next world.  It's about harmonizing the worlds 
instead of seeing them in conflict.  

Rich Wolpoe

______________________________ Reply Separator _________________________________
Subject: Rational Kabbalists 
Author:  <avodah@aishdas.org> at tcpgate
Date:    11/8/1999 5:14 PM

Any reason why the Maharal wouldn't be on that list?

Also, what do we mean by "rational"? As opposed to experiential (e.g. 
Chassidus)? Mystical? I assume I can rule out the intent being 


Micha Berger (973) 916-0287          MMG"H for  8-Nov-99: Levi, Toldos 
micha@aishdas.org                                         A"H 
http://www.aishdas.org                                    Pisachim 65b 
For a mitzvah is a lamp, and the Torah its light.         

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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 15:20:46 -0800 (PST)
From: harry maryles <hmaryles@yahoo.com>
Re: brain Death

--- Saul J Weinreb <sweinr1@uic.edu> wrote:
> i don't claim to be an expert in brain death, but as
> far as i can remember
> from my lectures in medical school, a flat EEG is
> not, and never was, one
> of the criteria
> for determining brain death.  there are many
> criteria that are necessary
> to prove that one is brain dead, i.e. that all of
> his brain functions have
> completely ceased.
> A physician must demonstrate that all brain stem
> functions and reflexes
> are absent,

I must admit that after reading Shaul's explanation of
brain death, that it seems to give support to R.
Tendler's position.  As I understand it, the only
problem Halachicly is that Chazal themselves did not
use brain death as their definition.  They used
indicators that were available to them then.  So that
is what prevents us from using a seemingly superior
determinant.  Apparently, R. Tendler seems to feel
that if Chazal would have had modern day techniques
for determing death, they would have certainly defined
death as brain death.



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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 15:38:39 -0800 (PST)
From: harry maryles <hmaryles@yahoo.com>
Re: Friendly fundamentalists

--- Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org> wrote:

> Well... I don't know about Graham. As I implied
> earlier he's a key player
> in j4j -- which doesn't prey upon sincere Jews, but
> only for tactical reasons.
> (You can get a dozen underaffiliated Jews for the
> same effort.)
> J4J is a product of Graham's "Project '73", a
> program launched in 1973 to
> convert Jews.

I don't think BG subscribes to these views any longer.
1973 was 25 years ago. and the thinking of Evangelists
has substantially changed since then.

Once again, just to be clear: I am NOT advocating
inviting them over for shabbos cholent.  I am only
advocating joining forces with them politically for
purposes of mutual interst.



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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 18:55:11 EST
From: Yzkd@aol.com
Re: cholam=choilem=cheilem=chaulem=melo-foom

In a message dated 11/8/99 6:03:44 PM Eastern Standard Time, 
hmaryles@yahoo.com writes:

> You left out "Kodauwsh"  (chaulem - Yekke) :)

Actualy I was waiting for this comment :) 
However A yekke wouldn't try to be Yotze Kol Hadeios as it has to be perfect 

Kol Tuv

Yitzchok Zirkind

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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 19:16:12 EST
From: C1A1Brown@aol.com
Tanya - Tzavaat Rivash and the Paradox of Chassidus

>>>Tzavaat haRivash says something similar in paragraph 2-3: "God wishes to
be served in all possible ways. This means the following: ... For God wishes 
to be
served in all possible ways, sometiems in one manner and sometimes in
another. That is why it happened that you had to go on a journey or talk to
people, i.e., in order that you serve Him in that alternate way." However,
the Tanya says almost the opposite, substantiating S-U's idea..., .Here 
below, however, it is only while it is engaged in Torah . study or in the 
performance of a mizvah. For if he engages afterwards in anything else, he 
becomes separated, <<<

I think one need not create a contadiction here.  In Tzavoas HaRivash #5 he
cautions "lo yistakel klal b'inyanei olam hazeh v'lo yachshov bahem klal rak
yistadel b'chol inyanim k'dei l'hafrid es atzmo me'ha-gashmiyus..." (see my
posting in avodah # 116).  This despite espousing the doctrine of ha'alat
hanitzotzot found even in "eitzim v'avanim..." (#141).  Tanya is not
referring to divrei reshus but to devarim betielim, worthless pursuits,
consistant with #5 in Rivash.

>>>(YGB)But, even if not, there is already, of course, ambivalence in Chazal
and the Rishonim towards Chochmo Yevonis. And, in Chassidus, it seems that
the mental process requires a special approach not necessarily congruent
with that employed with the other chushim. So, the parameters are neither
necessarily "made up", nor, on the other hand, need they, from the Chassidic
perspective, be consistent. <<<

So what indeed are the parameters?  And if they need not be consistant how
do we evaluate when and where to apply them?  

R' Chanina's supernatural burning of the vinegar is cited as proof to man's 
ability to divorce himself from the intellectually mundane of this-world, yet 
at the same time R' Chanina's lifestyle of eating only a kav charuvin every 
week is rejected in deference to engaging in physical eating and drinking of 
this-worldliness to elevate it.  

I don;t see how you can have it both ways.

I would also suggest that the writings of the Ishbitzer and the like need to 
be taken with a grain of salt - the concept of being a shomer Torah u'mitzvot 
while co-existing in the secular world would be as conceivable to an 18th 
century Chassidic Rebbe as being shomer TUM and living on Mars, esp. when one 
considers that the divide between Williamsburg and Wall Street as far greater 
than that between non-Chassidic Judaism and the secular world.  Chassidic 
opposition to engaging the secular world is probably born out of sociological 
and practical boundries more than out of ideological doctrine.  


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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 20:56:15 -0600
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Re: Re: Was Rambam and Asceticism, now Torah uMadda

Not *all* Limudei Kodesh. Just those areas of Chassidus that are not from
the Rebbes of Chabad.

Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer
Cong. Bais Tefila, 3555 W. Peterson Ave., Chicago, IL 60659
http://www.aishdas.org/baistefila    ygb@aishdas.org

----- Original Message -----
From: harry maryles <hmaryles@yahoo.com>
To: <avodah@aishdas.org>

> This flies in the face of the oft attributed aspect of
> Chasidus in general and Chabad Chasidus in particular
> that it is Emunah Pshutah that is the higher form of
> Emunah (as opposed to Emunah MiDaas) and therefore,
> Chasidus discourages ANY type of, serious learning
> even Limudei Kodesh, as a P'gam in one's Emunah
> P'shuta.
> HM
> =====
> __________________________________________________
> Do You Yahoo!?
> Bid and sell for free at http://auctions.yahoo.com

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Date: Mon, 08 Nov 1999 22:13:39 -0600
From: Saul Weinreb <sweinr1@uic.edu>
Brain Death

Reb HM asked
"It was always my understanding (as a lay person)that
Brain death and Coma are two seperate things.  In a
Coma, an individual CAN still have brain function. 
Brain Death means absolutely no brain function,
whatsoever.  The two are not equal.  Is this a correct

A brief definition, in layman's terms would be quite

According to the accepted medical definition, a persistant vegetative state
and and brain death are determined by the criteria I quote below (as quoted
from Rowland: Merritt's Textbook of Neurology, 9th ed., Copyright  1995)
These criteria mean that during a vegetative state, many of the functions
of the brain are still working, only on a certain level, which varies from
patient to patient, they are in a "coma."  However, in brain death, all
functions of the brain have ceased, i.e. it is a piece of non-functioning
tissue.  As stated by several of our list members, there are no known cases
of people coming to life after a diagnosis of brain death.  I hope this was
brief enough, if you are interested iin more specifics, see the criteria
below, otherwise - ignore them. I know that some of them contain medical
terminology, but I think that you can get the idea even if you don't fully
understand the concepts.

Persistant Vegetative State
1.  No evidence of awareness of self or surroundings.Reflex or spontaneous
eye opening may occur.
2. No communication between examiner and patient, auditory or written, that
is meaningful and consistent. Target stimuli not usually followed visually,
but sometimes visual tracking present. No emotional response to verbal
3. No comprehensible speech or mouthing of words. 
4. Smiling, frowning, or crying inconsistently related to any apparent
5. Sleep-wake cycles present. 
6. Brain stem and spinal reflexes variable, e.g., preservation of sucking,
rooting, chewing, swallowing, pupillary reactivity to light, oculocephalic
responses, and grasp or tendon reflexes. 
7. No voluntary movements or behavior, no matter how rudimentary; no motor
activity suggesting learned behavior; no mimicry. Withdrawal or posturing
can occur with noxious stimuli.
8. Usually intact blood pressure control and cardiorespiratory function.
Incontinence of bladder and bowel.

Brain Death

1. Coma, unresponsive to stimuli above foramen magnum. 
2. Apnea off ventilator (with oxygenation) for a duration sufficient to
produce hypercarbic respiratory drive (usually 10 to 20 minutes to achieve
P co2 of 50 to 60 mm Hg). 
3. Absence of cephalic reflexes, including pupillary, oculocephalic,
oculovestibular (caloric), corneal, gag, sucking, swallowing, and
extensor posturing. Purely spinal reflexes may be present,
including tendon reflexes, plantar responses, and limb flexion to
noxious stimuli. 
4. Body temperature above 34 C. 
5. Systemic circulation may be intact. 
6. Diagnosis known to be structural disease or irreversible metabolic
disturbance; absence of drug intoxication, including ethanol,
sedatives, potentially anesthetizing agents, or paralyzing drugs. 
7. In adults with known structural cause and without involvement of
drugs or ethanol, at least 6 hours of absent brain function; for
others, including those with anoxic-ischemic brain damage, at least
24 hours' observation plus negative drug screen. 
8. Diagnosis of brain death inappropriate in infants younger than 7
days of age. Observation of at least 48 hours for infants aged 7
days to 2 months, at least 24 hours for those aged 2 months to 1
year, and at least 12 hours for those aged 1 to 5 years (24 hours if
anoxic-ischemic brain damage). For older children, adult criteria
9. Optional confirmatory studies include: EEG isolectric for 30 minutes at
maximal gain. Absent brain stem evoked responses. Absent cerebral
circulation demonstrated by radiographic, radioisotope, or magnetic
resonance angiography.

Shaul Weinreb

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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 22:26:33 -0500
From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@juno.com>
Source for Beged Ivri

Comes straight from the Rambam Idolatry Chapter 11
It is to differentiate us from Goyim to be distant from 
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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 22:14:05 -0500
From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@juno.com>
What Sefardim do that Ashkenazim don't

Sammy asks if 'Do you want to start'

Actually I've noticed Sefardim are more makpid on
100 blessings a day (In fact I noticed this when I
was by Sammy's simchat bayit but at other places 

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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 22:28:56 -0500
From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@juno.com>
Majority rules

In addition to the Chazon ish, there was an interesting
interlude between Chaiim Brown and myself on the email
group Avodah Exile (fond memories)--the basic point was
that the Laws of Sanherin clearly state that it is the majority
of REASONS/ARGUMENTS not people that rules (So it
is not politics but logical arguments)
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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 22:44:22 -0500
From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@juno.com>
Thank God For Goyim

HM writes
The only time Lubavitch allows a secular program is if
it the only way they can establish a school.
Thank God then, for creating the chariot of history and 
forcing us to live with Goyim who make laws that 
require us to earn a descent living and not live as schnorrers

Russell Hendel; http://www.shamash.org/rashi/
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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 19:49:09 -0500
From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@juno.com>
Re: Yoatzos, once again


On Mon, 8 Nov 1999 09:07:00 -0500 Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@juno.com>
> From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@juno.com
> <<First, I am flattered you quote me.>>
> 	Don't be;  I quoted you to show the inconsistency of your 
> position.

No NO...you  showed its consistency (See below). You are like a student
who trusts his teacher when he sees an inconsistency and asks for 
guidance. I am deeply flattered.

> <<Let me put it another way....If you can't hold women competent to 
> know
> distinctions then you can't even hold them competent to ask a 
> sheeila>>
> 	You are equating being able to ANSWER a shaila to being able 
> to POSE one.  This is patently incorrect.

---used within 24 hours
---absorbing material
---1/60 th ratio
---used for food, taste, preserve
then you really don't have to ask the question (think about it). 

In fact no one ever asks a shaiila. Rather the rav and person enter
dialog to try and clarify the question--"was it cold", "was it hot"...
In other words asking a shaiila is nothing other than learning
HOW to ask it. Once you learn HOW to ask it you know how
to pasken.


> Gershon

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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 19:56:52 -0500
From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@juno.com>
Re: Re[2]: Request not to Crack Jokes about G-d

There is actually a GMARAH similar to what you say.
HILLEL when going to take a bath would tell his students
that he is going to wash the KINGS statue.

At any rate MAKING FUN of Jews is certainly Assur anyway
(because of Onaah)

On a conceptual level however I have a possible Kulah (again if
the kulah is accepted CRACKING JOKES ABOUT PEOPLE IS

The Kulah is that making Jokes about people has a dual interpretation
--jokes about people AND
--jokes about God
Hence it is not exclusively about God.

But making jokes about God is EXCLUSIVELY about God

Hence it is NICCAR (Recognizable)

The clincher is that we compare God to a king. A king might kill
somebody who insulted him. But if you insulted someone like him
(charicature) even though your goal was to insult him you might
get away with it.


On Mon, 8 Nov 1999 10:27:03 -0500 <richard_wolpoe@ibi.com> writes:
> What about jokes about Tzelem Elokim?
> Isn't making a joke about a Jew a toldo of making fun of Hashem as 
> it is wrtten 
> Bonim Atme Lashem?
> Rich Wolpoe 
> ______________________________ Reply Separator 
> _________________________________
> Subject: Re: Request not to Crack Jokes about G-d 
> 1) there is a general mitzvah to RESPECT GOD.
> 2) Any violation of this mitzvah would be an ISSUR ASAY
> 3) Although the SA does not give a LIST of what shouldn't be done 
> clearly 
> at the
> very least anything you would not do before a King, or CEO or 
> American 
> President in Public
> you shouldn't do before God (Note I am making the prohibition 
> dependent 
> on your assessment
> of what you would not do).
> About the above I am sure. About what is to follow I would have to 
> say it 
> is speculative (But
> I still think it has legitimacy)
> It seems to me that cracking Jokes about God is a Toladah of GIDUF 
> in 
> that it has the same form
> but not the same intensity. I would argue that any TOLADAH of an 
> issur 
> mithah must be
> rabinically prohibited (as a syag). But I do not have further proof
> Russell

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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 22:37:17 -0500
From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@juno.com>
Sanhedrin LeAthid Lavo

What I said

No Sanhedrin can just "repeal" Rishonim. THey have to 
- ---be greater in number
- ---greater in wisdom
- ---have a good reason (eg an error in a rishon) 
- ---not do it too often

The last stipulation is important

applies to Mashiach also
The only catch is that Mashiach sanhenrin will
be bigger in number than the other sanhedrins

BUT...that is only one of the 4 stipulations
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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 23:06:13 -0500
From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@juno.com>
Charedi College going

HG writes
 With a few exceptions, most **MALE**
hareidi secular education does not go beyond the equivalent of a 6-7th
grade level.
Someone at Shabbath Lunch mentioned that a Yeshiva MCHON LEV
is experimenting with half a day Limud and half a day technical learning
and that this is successful and attended by even Charedis

Anyone know anything more about this
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Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999 22:05:55 -0500
From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@juno.com>
Doing mitzvoth for social pressures

But Carl, the most of the mitzvoth I can think of
are done in public and with social pressures eg

--davening (in a minyan)
--giving donations (and getting plaques/ads)
--benching (mezuman)
--giving charity to shnorers (your example)
--treating our parents nicely (they talk about it)
--and yes don't we all gossip about how we got
this ethrog and so and so got this ethrog

Finally since this started with a gmarrah in 
bracoth let me add a midrash rabbah

>>If Reuven had known that the Tnach
>>would write up how he tried to save 
>>Joseph he would have run and acted 
>>more intensely

So we see that positive mitzvoth ARE
affected by social pressures

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