Avodah Mailing List

Volume 04 : Number 163

Monday, December 6 1999

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Fri, 3 Dec 1999 11:38:50 +0200
From: "Mrs. Gila Atwood" <gatwood@netvision.net.il>

I'm sure more charedi families would send their boys to Marava IF it was
more affordable and more well known in the charedi world. It is simply
beyond the budget of most large Israeli families. (Not all charedim follow
Rav Eliashiv, though I'm sure even if it became more accessible to us, there
would be the same kind of controversy that rages over Du Parc for girls).
The very fact that there is a charedi sector of Machon Lev attests to the
desirability of this kind of education.   Mrs. G. Atwood

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Date: Sun, 05 Dec 1999 01:27:46 +0000
From: David Herskovic <david@arctic1.demon.co.uk>
problem kids

I think the problem with troubled teens can be found even here on

While the 'problem' of Yoatsot generated an enormous amount of posts the
problem of teens leaving the fold has been relatively muted. It is the
same with all chareidi journals giving headline coverage to matters such
as half a dozen non-jews emigrating from the former Soviet Union while
tucking away social issues eating away at their midst in cryptic
articles in the middle pages lest the 'enemy' gets to know about it.

Teens leaving the fold are an inevitable consequence of a)the growth in
numbers of the chareidi population and b)the ever increasing extremism,
insularity and self imposed isolation of the community.

If the roshei yeshives, rebbes, gedoylim can be relied on for anything
it is that as usual they will identify the wrong problems and suggest
the wrong solutions.

So we get the notices and posters couched in histrionic clichs signed
by the great and the good who will not for a moment consider that the
chareidi system is simply not suitable for everyone.

Only this morning was there an appeal in my shtibel by some asken and
mekhanekh who emphasised how even in some of the best households there
is a permanent tishe bov as a result of a youngster going 'off' and how
'warm' yingerlat can reverse the trend.

So there you have it. The problem is the grief of the parents but not
the plight of the youngster while the solution is so simple it makes you
kick yourself you didn't think of it first.

It's probably my cynicism that made me suggest that if the only the
akhey yosef would have gone out collecting upon observing their brother
turning into something of a dandy they would have profited far more than
by selling him.

Dovid Herskovic

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Date: Sat, 4 Dec 1999 22:19:49 -0600
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Re: problem kids

You were right about only one thing in your post, R' Dovid, your cynicism.
No MO journal or periodical that I have ever seen has devoted the amount of
relentless soul-searching and self-critique to the problem of children in
our midst that the JO has just devoted, with great mussar haskell for myself
and all other parents. And this, from a segement of society often critiqued
for unwillingness to confront its problems (an issue dealt with in the JO
spread as well).

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

----- Original Message -----
From: David Herskovic <david@arctic1.demon.co.uk>
To: Avodah <avodah@aishdas.org>
Sent: Saturday, December 04, 1999 7:27 PM
Subject: problem kids

> It's probably my cynicism that made me suggest that if the only the
> akhey yosef would have gone out collecting upon observing their brother
> turning into something of a dandy they would have profited far more than
> by selling him.
> Dovid Herskovic

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Date: Sun, 5 Dec 1999 08:58:44 +0200
From: "Akiva Atwood" <atwood@netvision.net.il>
RE: agunahs in baltimore

> But to the real point.  I'm not familiar with Ms Ragen's work
> but from her
> tone it's clear she has an axe to grind.

She does. As is obvious from the article, she is a vocal proponent of the
"If the Rabbis *really* wanted to they could solve the aguna problem --
since they don't, obviously they don't want to" school of feminism.


Akiva Atwood
POB 27515
Jerusalem, Israel 91274

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Date: Sun, 5 Dec 1999 12:20:03 +0200
From: Menachem Burack <Mburack@emiltd.com>
RE: Avodah V4 #161

By seeking out, I mean - they don't have a house in which they can
light, that have not yet "bumped into" a lit menorah - should they go
look for one? As Tos. points out that there are no other birkas haroeh
by mitzvos and being that this birkas haroeh is in the place of a chiyuv
(as Tos writes in Sukka) maybe they should actively find a lit menorah
and make a "she'asa nisim" 

> 	If they see the ner,  they should certainly make the 
> brocho.   As far as
>  SEEKING out,  rather than saying the brocho if they happen 
> to see a ner
> Chanuka,  do we ever find a mitzvah to seek out a birchas haro'eh?
> Gershon

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Date: Sun, 5 Dec 1999 06:13:35 -0600
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Birkas Ha'Ro'eh

The Rogatchover holds that ba'zman ha'zeh one does not make birkas ha'ro'eh
(k'medumeh li a chiddush gadol) because there are two gedarim in the neiros:
1. The Mitzva; 2. Pirsum Ha'Nes. He holds that "me'she'as sakono" = the time
of "botlo Megillas Ta'anis" and that at that point the geder of pirsum
ha'nes of Chanuka fell by the wayside just as the rest of the celebrations
of nissim in MT did. Therefore, there is no more a chiyuv l'hadlik b'pesach
ha'bayis, nor the corresponding birkas ha'ro'eh. Just saw this yesteday
cited in the "Kelalei Ha'Torah V'Ha'Mitzva".

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

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Date: Sun, 5 Dec 1999 14:19:27 +0200
From: "Mrs. Gila Atwood" <gatwood@netvision.net.il>
Re: Re[2]: Brave New World or Retroactive Fatherhood - & motherhood

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: <richard_wolpoe@ibi.com>
To: <avodah@aishdas.org>; <avodah@aishdas.org>
Sent: Thursday, December 02, 1999 11:24 PM
Subject: Re[2]: Brave New World or Retroactive Fatherhood

> FWIW the case of Yibum might be different . NO daas is required in the
case of
> Yibum
> Dislcaimer I don't know if what Lot did pre-Matan Torah was consistutes an
> YIBUM or not
> Rich Wolpoe
> ______________________________ Reply Separator
> Being alive might be a requirement for paternity, but why should
> intention be required? See Bereshis 19:33,35. Lot was unaware of his
> daughters' actions, yet he is considered the father of Amon and Moav, is
> he not?
> Akiva Miller
IMHO in these issues we have to distinguish between "act" and "identity".
"act" - giluy arayos requires intention & derech hateva.
Identity of offspring is a different issue.  I understand that most gedolim
do not permit IVF by donor sperm, but few of them hold that this is gilui
arayos and results in mamzerus. It would be a major interference in family
If a woman succeeds in having a child via IVF from the deceased husband (lo
aleynu!)-  yibum and chalitza may not be necessary. Why would it not be
legitimate to define the father simply genetically? (the individual- not his
clone or identical twin brother)

(btw that three day survival ONLY works in a hospitable medium, otherwise
the die off is pretty fast.)

We run into another big problem when we get to egg donor vs. surrogate
motherhood.  Who should be the father?  If motherhood is determined by
parturition, what happens in the case of surrogate motherhood? Should the
woman carrying the foetus have to sign a shtar to renounce motherhood? Would
that even be effective?  In the case of egg donor, who should the father be-
the husband of the egg donor or the husband of the woman carrying the
foetus? Probably the latter, but does anyone know the latest responsa?    G.

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Date: Sun, 5 Dec 1999 05:01:09 -0800 (PST)
From: harry maryles <hmaryles@yahoo.com>
Re: Israeli seminary expenses

--- Jerry Schachter <schachte@netvision.net.il> wrote:
> Shlomo Godick <shlomog@mehish.co.il> wrote:
> >American programs) is in excess of $10,000. per
> year,
> >with absolutely no discounts or scholarships
> >available.
> Ein hachi nami!!!
> This is an *American* expense, which Israelis don't
> have.
> Yaakov Schachter (proud Israeli father of 6 girls
> blah"r)

Well, I guess that settles it.  We should all move to
Israel and than all of us can have "Free" tuition for
our daughters.  :)


Do You Yahoo!?
Thousands of Stores.  Millions of Products.  All in one place.
Yahoo! Shopping: http://shopping.yahoo.com

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Date: Sun, 5 Dec 1999 15:47:12 +0200
From: "Akiva Atwood" <atwood@netvision.net.il>
RE: Israeli seminary expenses

> Well, I guess that settles it.  We should all move to
> Israel and than all of us can have "Free" tuition for
> our daughters.  :)
> HM

It's not *free* -- it's just much less than the *american* price.


Akiva Atwood                 
POB 27515
Jerusalem, Israel 91274  

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Date: Sun, 5 Dec 1999 11:38:37 EST
From: C1A1Brown@aol.com
achsimai, Chanukah issues

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 1.  The Mordechai subscribes to shitas Rashi that if you intend to light at 
home or have someone lighting for you at home ther eis no birchas haroeh.  I 
do not see how you can claim that birchas haroeh is an independent chiyuv - 
if so, although you may fufill the hadlaka later or through someone else, why 
are you not obligated in birchas haroeh now?  The problem is that the 
Mordechai quotes the R"I that when people went to the yerid (holiday 
shopping?) they had their wife light at home and lit anyway in the goy's 
house.  If birchas harieh is not a seperate din, and they fufill the hadlakah 
otherwise, what was accomplished through the lighting?  For lack of a better 
answer, perhaps it was just a zecher l'nes,(see the Bigdei Yesha, also the  
Mordechai doesn't say explicitely that the travellers said birchas haroeh).  
As Gershon Dubin already wrote, even if you treat birchas haroeh as a 
seperate obligation (which perhaps would fit better acc. to the Rishonim who 
hold to say birchas haroeh even if you will do a hadlakah later), it is a 
kiyum mitzva - there is no proof to suggest that it is a chovah to go out of 
your way to see neiros Chanukah.

As for ther Ran, all the Ran writes is that ner Chanukah is not a chovas 
hadar like mezuzah.  That doesn't mean the homeless are obligated - after 
all, a guest isn't homeless, but a guest wouldn't be obligated in mezuzah.  
All it means is that the permanent residence that chovas hadar requires may 
not be necessary.

Re: mishtatef b'prtutah: b'pashtus you become metzuraf to the household.  I 
thought perhaps yesh lachkor if that means the hadlakas BH'B would pater your 
chiyuv or perhaps you are now considered yourself a madlik, perhaps the 
underlying lomdus of the mach. Ran (reish Pesachim) and Yerushalmi as to 
whether the beracha is l'hadlik or al hadlakah, i.e. whether you are the 
mekayem mitzva or it is done through shlichus.

Two other questions that bothered me: why is there no din of tadir kodem that 
would obligate you to daven mincha on Friday before hadlakas ner Chanukah?  
Secondly: if hiddur applies only to the cheftza shel mitzva, shouldn;t that 
mean hiddur is in the candles/oil, not the menorah?  


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From: "Brown, Charles.F" <charlesf.brown@gs.com>
To: "'c1a1brown@aol.com'" <c1a1brown@aol.com>
Subject: FW: Avodah V4 #160
Date: Thu, 2 Dec 1999 16:13:53 -0500 
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> -----Original Message-----
> From: Brown, Charles.F 
> Sent: Thursday, December 02, 1999 3:56 PM
> To:   'Markowitz, Chaim'
> Subject:  RE: Avodah V4 #160
> I am not subscribed to avodah here, but nonetheless maybe you can clarify
> some things...Also thanks for the he'ora re: the zman hadlakah.  Maybe
> there is a special kiyum in lighting when people/wife are home bec. of ish
> u'beiso.  
>   >>>The Mordechai has a shittah that in the case where someone is
> among Goyim and he will not see Ner Chanukah at all,even if his wife is
> lighting for him at home, he  would still have to light to fullfill the
> aspect of "Roeh es Haneiros". However, the Rambam doesn't bring the
> halachah of Birchas Haroeh at all and it would seem the Rambam would argue
> on the Mordechai. <<<<
>   If I remember correctly, there is a machlokes Rishonim if you have
> to say the birchas haro'eh when someone is lighting for you at home.
> There is a secondary machlokes achronim if you would have to say the
> beracha when you will be lighting yourself later at home.  The Rambam's
> shita is unique in that he doesn't cite the birchas haroeh at all.
>   >>>The Rambam would still hold if you have no wife at home you still
> have to light. The Ran explains that the chiddush of "achsenai" is that we
> don't say ner chanukah is like the chiyuv of mezuzah-that if you have no
> house you have no chiyuv. Mashma that even though an achsenai is
> "homeless" and not viewed as having a house he still has a chiyuv. You
> might be able to say that the Ran is  a "Chovas Hagavrah " person, but I'm
> not sure this is so. As a possible hesber to the Ran (& Rambam) you could
> say that even though m'ikar hadin it is a chovas bayis, nevertheless the
> chachamim created a secondary chiyuv when someone doesn't have a house.
> <<<
>   I don't understand what you want - Why create this secondary chiyuv
> when you don't have a compelling reason to do so?  What difficulty
> requires hesber? I have to look at the Ran when I get home, but I would
> have said simply, that these are two different halachos.  Mezuzah requires
> more than simple residence in a house, v'ha'raya, a guest in someone's
> house is never obligated in mezuzah.  Neiros Chanukah may still require
> residence, but not of a permanent nature the way mezuzah does.  That
> doesn't have anything to do with the issue of gavra/cheftza - mezuzah can
> be a chovas hagavra but it is chal only b'tnai that you have a house.  
>   >>> On the same topic, I am trying to figure out what the "Mishtatef
> B'Prutah" accomplishes for an Achsenai. If you hold it's chovas gavrah so
> why couldn't he be yotzei through shomei k'oneh (assuming that shomea
> k'oneh would work in this case). If it's chovas ahbayis-does the prutah
> give him a din as part of the bayis? A 3rd possibility is that it works
> like ner shabbos but then the question is how does it work by ner shabbos.
>   How will shomeah k'oneh help you on a ma'aseh mitzva?  And hadlakah
> is a mitzva that is not nitfas in shlichus, see the discussion in poskim
> as to whether the bracha is al hadlakah or l'hadlik.  The simple pshat is
> that the perutah makes you part of the household - why say anything
> different?  I haven't seen the avodah digest, but the whole question of
> seeking out a menorah for birchas haroeh is strange - it is a birchas
> hashevach.  Mah nishtana this birchas hashevach from any other where there
> is no chiyuv to seek out a way to make the beracha. 
>   Date: Wed, 1 Dec 1999 21:34:30 +0200
>   From: "Burack" <mburack@emiltd.com>
>   Subject: Homeless on Channuka
>   The Gemara in Shabbos stipulates that the chiyuv of ner Channuka is
> "ner ish
>   u'bayso."  How literally do we define "bayso?"  For example, Rashi
>   understands it to mean "household,"  whereas Tos., in Sukkah 46a
> (d"h
>   Haroeh), takes it more literally.  Tos asks why is there a birkas
> haroeh by
>   Chanuka and no other mitzvah?  Tos (in his second answer) responds
> that some
>   people don't have homes to fulfill the mitzvah. The nafka minah
> would be the
>   homeless population.
>   Based upon this assumption, do the homeless have a chiyuv to seek
> out a lit
>   menorah and make a birkas haroeh? Any ideas?


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Date: Sun, 5 Dec 1999 14:58:10 +0200
From: "Shoshana L. Boublil" <toramada@netvision.net.il>
Re:Re: agunahs in baltimore

First, I have changed ISPs and my new e-mail is:

-----Original Message-----
From: Avodah <owner-avodah@aishdas.org>
To: avodah-digest@aishdas.org <avodah-digest@aishdas.org>
Date:  04  1999 18:06
Subject: Avodah V4 #162

>Date: Thu, 2 Dec 1999 16:22:35 -0500
>From: j e rosenbaum <jerosenb@hcs.harvard.edu>
>Subject: Re: agunahs in baltimore

I just read the article and while I have no knowledge how accurate the tale
is, the legal issues are wrong at times.  Unfortunately, I've heard the same
mistaken views from other sources (my husband is also an expert in family
law here in Israel) so I'm not too suprised.

The first important issue is that according to many opinions if a wife
leaves home b/c of abuse -- she does not loose her Ketubah.  On top of that
she has the right to sue for reparations.

Another issue is that there is a difference between the dry letter of the
law and judgements rendered in a Beit Din.  Women should seek competent
legal advise from practitioners and not rely on advise based on stam din.
A great rabbi in Lybia when asked what he would pasken in a specific case
refused to answer.  He said that the only way to know was to present the
case in a Beit Din, and then with Hashem's assistance a Psak is given.

While it is difficult to prove abuse, it is not impossible and local rabbis
faced with such questions should consult with experienced people prior to
advising the women in their community.  BTW, many times women are told what
to do -- and do the opposite b/c "their neighbour" did it differently (or
some other Eitzas giver) and the woman finds herself worse off than she

Unfortunately, the claim that Batei Din don't give sufficient child support
is many times true.  One of the problems being how to decide on the sum.
Many times it is made according to how much the father earns.  Rav Dichovsky
of the Beit Din HaRAbbani HaGadol ruled, OTOH, in at least one case, that a
father should go out to work and support his kids -- even though the ketuba
said that he does not have to support so he could sit and learn.  But, each
case is decided on it's own merits, so we can't really compare.

I can only hope that women will not be abused and left to starve.  I'm sure
many are doing much to prevent such situations.

Shoshana L. Boublil, Israel

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