Avodah Mailing List

Volume 04 : Number 155

Friday, November 26 1999

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Wed, 24 Nov 1999 22:15:29 -0600
From: sweinr1 <sweinr1@uic.edu>
hadassim at kiddush

R' david riceman asks, "Does anyone smell hadassim
during kiddush nowadays?"
Yes.  This minhag still exists in many Chassidic circles, I have seen it by 
several rebbes - if I am not mistaken I have seen it by the Bostoner Rebbe 
shlita.  I think it still exists by some sefardim as well, matbe some of our 
sephardic listmembers could fill us in on this?
Shaul Weinreb

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Date: Wed, 24 Nov 1999 23:49:49 EST
From: DFinchPC@aol.com
Re: Hasidei Ashkenaz and Ba'alei HaTosafot

In a message dated 11/24/99 5:06:17 PM US Central Standard Time, 
MFeldman@CM-P.COM writes:

<< I finally got my hands on Dr. Haym Soloveitchik's article, "Three Themes in
 Sefer Hasidim."

Please let the rest of us know where we can get a copy of this article. 

David Finch

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Date: Wed, 24 Nov 1999 22:53:16 -0600
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Re: Hasidei Ashkenaz and Ba'alei HaTosafot

Sorry, mostly gibberish to me, but where is the mockery?

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

----- Original Message -----
From: Feldman, Mark <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
To: Avodah (E-mail) <avodah@aishdas.org>
Sent: Wednesday, November 24, 1999 5:05 PM
Subject: Hasidei Ashkenaz and Ba'alei HaTosafot

> I finally got my hands on Dr. Haym Soloveitchik's article, "Three Themes
> Sefer Hasidim."
> Here are some excerpts (connected to our recent discussion re Hasidei
> Ashkenaz and Ba'alei HaTosafot):
> p. 339:
> <<...German Hasidism grew up alongside of a Halakhah triumphant.  And it
> against the backdrop of the tosafist movement that the Haside Ashkenaz
> be viewed.>>
> p.346
> <<It is in a good measure as a corrective to the growing intellectualism
> the time that the movement of the Haside Ashkenaz arose.>>
> p.348-350
> <<From a reading of the Rokeah [by R. Eleazar of Worms] one would never
> suspect that an intellectual revolution was sweeping through the schools
> Ashkenaz.  It is a work in the tradition of the Sifrut debe Rashi and has
> little connection with the world of the Tosafists.  This is not a
> consequence of brevity or practical purpose, as is sometimes suggested.
> Semak is no less a brief popular handbook. . . . R. Eleazar's work,
> in no way reflects those of Raban, R. Ephraim, or Rabyah, nor does it seek
> in any way to sum up their acheivements. . . .  To the author of the
> the Talmud still means one thing, and it is this straightforward meaning,
> together witht he traditions of the Rhineland and the rulings of its
> that constitutes his Halakhic world.. . . [T]his would indicate that
> alongside the great creative centers of Mainz, Bonn, and Regensburg there
> existed a conservative circle, which while in no way opposed to
> dialectic--indeed it could even break a dialectical lance if need
> really assimilated the achievements of the new pilpul or made them part of
> its Halakhic Anschauung. . . .  The Haside Ashkenaz, I suggest, arose from
> group that still lived in a world of simple rather than multiple
> . . .
> >From the days of Rabbenu Tam and R. Isaac of Dampierre, a French wave
> upon the shores of the Rhineland, and in the second quarter of the
> thirteenth century  it succeeds in inundating it.  R. Meir of Rothenburg
> in his thought and rulings no more German than French, and the same holds
> for R. Mordecai ben Hillel.  As for R. Asher (Rosh), who would know of the
> achievements of Raban and Rabyah if he took his instruction from the Piske
> Ha-Rosh?  There is far more of Spain and Provence in that work than there
> of his German homeland. . . .  Germany as a distinct Halakhic culture
> to exist somewhere around the year 1230, and the lament of R. Eleazar of
> Worms in his Sefer Ha-Hokmah that he has no one to whom to transmit his
> esoteric traditions is only part of a wider phenomenon.  R. Judah He-Hasid
> and R. Eleazar of Worms lived out their days watching the decline and fall
> of Ashkenaz. . . .
> Anyone reared upon the Tosafot of Dampierre would find the world of the
> Rokeah woefully inadequate.  But challenge Dampierre and Rabyah the
> could not. . . .  The sucess of the dialectic, however, was destroying the
> very world that the Hasidic leadership represented. . .>>
> Kol tuv,
> Moshe

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Date: Thu, 25 Nov 1999 00:05:13 EST
From: DFinchPC@aol.com
Re: Quantum Mechanics (was: We are pixels in G-d's imagination)

In a message dated 11/24/99 9:53:27 PM US Central Standard Time, 
kennethgmiller@juno.com writes:

<< Einstein disagreed with quantum theory. He is quoted as saying that "G-d
 does not play dice." >>

I remember the Einstein quote. I am uncomfortable, however, with the thought 
that Einstein "disagreed with quantum theory." Didn't he in large part 
predict it? Does the uncertainty principle of wave mechanics really suggest 
that HaShem is playing dice, (i.e., dealing out chance and pure randomness), 
or does it merely suggest that HaShem's power to manipulate the universe in 
unpredictable ways is consistent with the behavior of matter and energy as we 
understand it?

David Finch

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Date: Thu, 25 Nov 1999 17:10:12 +0200 (IST)
From: Jerry Schachter <schachte@netvision.net.il>

Another example was the burning of "mugmar" at religious rites and other
ceremonious occassions. At the end of a ritual, the besamim would sprinkled
over hot coals to fill the room with (easily seen) smoke, and everyone would
make the beracha on it. This would serve a signal that the show is over;
hence the modern Hebrew saying "leVarech Al haMugmar".

The minhag Ar"i is to say the beracha during the evening kiddush; and I've
seen some rebbes make the bracha also at seuda shelishis (followed by a
beracha on wine).

I'm not familiar with the particulars of the Sephardic minhag, but I've seen
many occassions where hadassim or rose oil would be passed around at
semachos and ceremonies for everyone to make the beracha.

And we mustn't forget the present-day custom of passing around snuff tobacco
in shul which, I've been told, is an ancient minhag arising from the need to
complete the 100 berachos for the day.

Chassidim attach kabalisitic tikunim to the physical body deriving
intangible pleasure from plant life.

Yaakov Schachter

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Date: Thu, 25 Nov 1999 10:33:12 EST
From: C1A1Brown@aol.com

>>>With quantum physics, things *tend* to follow the laws of
 nature as we understand them, but exceptions will occasionally happen,
 and *without* violating those laws. This, I suggest, I how Hashgacha
 Pratis manifests itself within the physical world....But it is also possible 
--- extremely
 unlikely but still possible --- that the particles which make up the
 water might spontaneously rearrange themselves to become blood. This
 might even happen in one spigot of the barrel, but not the other, where
 the water remains water.<<<

Thsi is factually inaccurate.  The indeterminism you refer to manifests 
itself only on the infitesimally small level of quantum mechanics - quantum 
theory does NOT suggest that the laws of classical mechanics might 
spontaneously cease to function.  Hashgacha and bechira allow for just that.  

The other issues you raise, e.g. free choice and determinism, have been 
resolved to a degree by many 'soft determinists'.  Your solution of allowing 
the soul to interface with quantum worlds only begs the question of how 
exactly a non-physical entity can impact on the physical world, which seems 
to me to be at least as strong a kashe as antything the determinists face.

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Date: Thu, 25 Nov 1999 11:48:20 -0600
From: Steve Katz <katzco@sprintmail.com>

I thought this might be of interest to our esteemed list members.
kol tuv

A Voice from Hebron
by Gary M. Cooperberg
Signs of Redemption
November 25, 1999

    Last week I had the pleasure of hosting over forty "Christian
from the United States on a visit to Hebron.  The group arrived on
Wednesday evening and left on Friday morning giving them a full day for
an in-depth visit to Kiryat Arba and Hebron.  The phenomenon of
Christians becoming increasingly interested in examining the Biblical
process of Zionist redemption, aside from raising eyebrows, is actually
an indication of the furtherance of that process.  Indeed, such
expressions of support for the Zionist process on the part of Gentiles
is fulfillment of Biblical prophesy.

    Having recently returned from a speaking tour in the states, during
which I came into contact with several such groups, I am more convinced
than ever that the Redemption is moving ever more swiftly to its
climax.  While there have been examples of Christians supporting the
concept of Jewish return to the Land of Israel at least one hundred
years ago, today the number of such Gentiles is rapidly increasing.
Clearly, by observing the reality of the reborn Jewish State and the
ingathering of the exiles thereto, any Bible scholar can recognize
genuine fulfillment of Biblical prophesy.

    On Wednesday evening two men from this Christian group, Andy and
approached me and asked if it would be possible for them to accompany me

to the Cave of Machpelah the following morning.  They knew that I pray
there every morning just before dawn.  It was a most unusual request,
and, I could tell that it was made in reverent sincerity.  They were
ready when I arrived at 5:20 in the morning and both donned Kipot in
respect.  When we got into the building and joined the minyan, the two
men sat quietly in silent meditation.  Toward the end of prayers a few
of the locals became aware of the fact that non-Jews had joined our
minyan.  One fellow even came over to me suggesting that this was not
proper.  Just at this point I noted a sentence in my prayer book. "And
all the goyim that He made came to pray to Him and give honor to His
Name".  I showed it to my friend and he was taken aback.  His best
response was to suggest that this sentence was referring to time of
redemption.  I smiled at him and suggested that perhaps that is why this

is happening now.

    Of course all of these things are open to debate, but no one can
that unusual things are happening and that the Jewish State is central
to it all.  That alone is an amazing phenomenon. In this age of Jet
planes and internet why should anyone care about or even notice the tiny

State of Israel?  What do we have that makes us so important as to be
constantly on the front pages of all the newspapers in the world?  Why
is every major world power so concerned about "peace" in our little
corner of the world when there are conflagrations in so many other
places?  Clearly this is all beyond logic and nature.  It is all further

verification of the Divine nature of the resurrection of Israel in her
ancient homeland and the ongoing process of Zionist redemption.

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Date: Thu, 25 Nov 1999 22:41:30 +0200
From: "Mrs. Gila Atwood" <gatwood@netvision.net.il>
Re: paper plates

Mrs. Gila Atwood
We are pixels in G-d's imagination.
You are welcome to browse my website at:
a little Torah, nature, humour, environmental concerns and memoirs.

----- Original Message -----
From: Sammy Ominsky <sambo@charm.net>
To: <avodah@aishdas.org>
Sent: Tuesday, November 23, 1999 4:30 PM
Subject: Re: paper plates

> harry maryles wrote:
> > By this logic It seems that the financially prudent
> > thing to do is to move to Israel.
> For some it may be. I just had 2 job offers in Israel, both at higher
> salaries than I make here in the states.
> Your comment about dirot is misleading also. If you *must* live in
> Jerusalem or B'nei Brak, yes, you're going to pay premium. But there are
> other places to live as well. Beitar and Efrat both have available housing
> (and I do mean HOUSE, not apartment) for prices comparable to my house in
> Baltimore. Admittedly, they're not walking distance to the Kotel, but we
> have to strike a balance somewhere.

True-  but turns out MORE difficult for families-  vehicle expenses,  trips
in to clinics and dentists, daily transport to schools, and less choice of
schooling,  commuting for parnasa, choice of parnasa etc etc.  We know
families who've tried it and moved back to the city, though their personal
space was sacrificed, worked out better for education and opportunities.
We'd consider it when all the children leave home...

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Date: Fri, 26 Nov 1999 00:22:08 +0200
From: "Mrs. Gila Atwood" <gatwood@netvision.net.il>
Re: Non-Yechi wedding/Nach

From: Alan Davidson <perzvi@hotmail.com>
To: <avodah@aishdas.org>
Sent: Thursday, November 25, 1999 12:55 AM
Subject: Non-Yechi wedding/Nach

> Really Harry, you went to a Lubavitch wedding where they didn't say
Yechi --
> next you are going to tell me that there are folks withouts beards or
> kippot who will only drink cholov Isroel Milk.

Chassidot!   :-)

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Date: Fri, 26 Nov 1999 00:18:59 +0200
From: "Mrs. Gila Atwood" <gatwood@netvision.net.il>
Re: living in Israel

The examples you point out
> are not a proof that Israeli residents are restrainig
> their purchases any more than it is a proof that they
> are limited in their expenditures by the very economic
> conditions that are extant.
> HM
There's definitely truth in this.  There is, of course, a great deal of
individual variation.  There are those who are trying to maintain some
degree of pre-immigration lifestyle or ape a lifestyle they never had. Many
of these people are running into debt and/or working excessively long hours
at several jobs. There are also many who have come to terms with a more
modest lifestyle and strive to live within means. Some of these are also in
debt and/or working hard, but the pressure and demands are lower-  of course
many factors apply to each situation. If a person goes around with an
attitude that "I must have two vacations abroad and eat meat every day of
the week"  they're going to find it very hard to make it here unless they
have the good fortune to have a plush job-  relatively rare.  It can take
many years or a large dose of idealism to make the adjustment, and it
doesn't help to be surrounded by people who's major aspiration is to adjust
in the opposite direction :-)
In terms of semachot-  there's also the issue of setting a precedent.  If we
make a lavish Bar Mitzvah or Chasene for the oldest child, a younger child
will feel it if you only have money for a much smaller affair in later
years- .  We can tell them "lo tachmod" etc,  but we should try to avoid the
possibility of putting them in a makom nisayon.

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Date: Thu, 25 Nov 1999 19:18:09 -0500 (EST)
From: micha@aishdas.org (Micha Berger)
Re: Kol Kevudah

Forwarded message:
From Mitch.Berger@kbcfp.com  Thu Nov 25 13:36:14 1999
Message-Id: <199911251836.NAA19138@dvqa1.nyc.kbcfp.com>
Subject: Re: Kol Kevudah
To: micha@aishdas.org (Me Berger)
Date: Thu, 25 Nov 1999 13:36:09 -0500 (EST)
From: micha@aishdas.org (Micha Berger)
Organization: The AishDas Society
X-Mailer: ELM [version 2.4 PL24]
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

I need to follow my own advice more often. I took a week reviewing the sources,
and realize I misrepresented RSRH's view on gender roles.

First, his translation of Tehillim 45:14 is "But the king's daughter is all
glorious within, more than the golden borders of her raiment." As Michael
Poppers pointed out, this better fits the hyphenation of "kol-kevudah"
as well as the use of "kevudah" not "kevudas". The commentary reads:
    "But", the singer adds with infinite tact and delicacy, "though the
    princess may appear glorious and splendid in public, she reveals her
    true glory in quiet, more private circles, and the splendid qualities
    she shows there are much greater than the exquisite beauty of the gold
    borders which shine at the hem of her garment." Penimah "within," is
    always used to designate an inner recess as opposed to the outer chambers.

What my better capture RSRH's position is his comments on "p'ru urvu umil'u
es ha'aretz *vikvishuha*" in Judaism Eternal, ch 11 (The Jewish Woman).
Vikvshuha is read malei, but written chaseir. IOW, while it is read as though
both should participate in conquering the world, it's written "vikivshah",
that only one of them should.
    [T]he command to "subdue", and with it to procure the means nexessary for
    marriage and for founding a household, is addressed only to the male sex,
    to whose function it belongs to compel the earth through labour to serve
    the needs of man. Hence the command to marry and found a household has
    absolute force only for the mail sex. Since, however, these commands are
    after all addressed to both sexes, it is obvious that for the performance
    of man's task of building up the world the Law-giver rechoned on the
    harmonious and equal co-operation of both sexes. Further, by excusing
    the famile sex from the hard labour of subdoing and mastering the earth,
    [H]e left it free to be devoted to the higher and more humanistic task
    of employing the products of man's labour for the ethical purposes of
    building up a house and family, that is to say, in the service of his
    true vocation and his welfare as a human being.

Going back to the subject of "inside" vs. "outside". It is not, as I said
earlier, home vs community. It is community in service of its members,
vs the expansion of the community's domain, reach, and standard of living.

For this reason, he writes, male is called tachar, memory, standard-bearer of
history, whlie female is called nekeivah, that which receives a vocation. It
is in this sense of negeivah, along with gever as a figure of kibbus
(Eizehu gibor? Hakoveish es yitzro) that he understands Yirmiyahu's comment
"ki vara H' chadashah ba'aretz, nekeivah tisoveiv gever" (31:21). Man does
nothing but provide a foundation, the means; woman's job is to provide the
ends. "And there is a danger that he may completely lost himself in this
struggle, that in striving to acquire his means he will lose sight of his
real vocation... This is an error which can almost be regarded as the key
to all the mistakes made in history. It is then the woman who leads him back
to what is truly human in him."

I think this correction clears up all of our questions but one. But it
does suggest that even the single, childless woman -- or one who has already
raised her children, can work on "penimah", on keeping society serving the
people within it.


Micha Berger (973) 916-0287          MMG"H for 25-Nov-99: Chamishi, Vayishlach
micha@aishdas.org                                         A"H 
http://www.aishdas.org                                    Pisachim 74a
For a mitzvah is a lamp, and the Torah its light.         

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Date: Fri, 26 Nov 1999 10:26:52 -0500 (EST)
From: micha@aishdas.org (Micha Berger)
Re: Mitzvos Ma'asiyos

Rich Wolpoe <richard_wolpoe@ibi.com> writes in v4n152:
: Isn't this indeed congruent with Hakol bidei shomayim chutz miyiras shomayim?

"This" being my assertion, based on Nefesh haChaim 1:6 that:
:>               metaphysical effects are caused by the change in people, not
:> by the deed itself.

How is it any different than physical causality in this regard? Or, to put it
another way "hakol biydei Shamayim chutz mitzinim upachim".


Micha Berger (973) 916-0287          MMG"H for 26-Nov-99: Shishi, Vayishlach
micha@aishdas.org                                         A"H 
http://www.aishdas.org                                    Pisachim 74b
For a mitzvah is a lamp, and the Torah its light.         Haftorah

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