Avodah Mailing List

Volume 06 : Number 062

Monday, December 11 2000

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Fri, 8 Dec 2000 13:10:10 -0500
From: "Wolpoe, Richard" <richard_wolpoe@ibi.com>
RE: al yilbash gever

> What if all the goyim (but no amei hoaratzim) began going over Niagara falls
> in a barrel - would it be mutar for Jews?

All kidding aside, it would ONLY be ok if goyim thought it was really
safe. Think about smoking today and smoking 50 years ago. People STILL
smoke, but they are know aware of the risks. 50 Years ago the risks
were just conjecture to most people

Shalom and Regards,
Rich Wolpoe

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Date: Sat, 9 Dec 2000 22:16:06 -0500
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Lo yilbash gever

On Wed, Dec 06, 2000 at 10:24:17PM -0500, JoeliRich@aol.com wrote:
:                                                         If men in that 
: geographic location shave that hair, it's OK.  The chidushei R"AK quote 2 
: opinions in the Prisha as to whether the "men" that are polled:-) are Jews or 
: non-Jews. He mentions no sources.
: Perhaps the reason to say it's Jews is that why would we care or learn from 
: non-Jewish practice.

I would suggest even further... that perhaps the question is related to
that of whether fashions are subject to the laws of chukas hagoyim. If
they are, then we're saying that what goyim do ought not impact how a
Jew decides to keep (or not) his hair.


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Date: Fri, 8 Dec 2000 13:18:53 -0500
From: "Wolpoe, Richard" <richard_wolpoe@ibi.com>
RE: Woman and learning

> But the Chafetz Chaim only advocated teaching women the basics (and 
> perhaps the more advanced) of yiddishkeit so that they would recognize 
> that Judaism is profoundly true.

How does the "Lonely Woman of Faith" learn to recognize that Judasim is
profoundly true? How does one teach Yiddiskeit in a way to recognize
it is profoundly true? What are the implications here in practical terms?

For example, if one (man or woman) is exposed to alternate options,
would comparitve religion become a pre-requisite?

Shalom and Regards,
Rich Wolpoe

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Date: Fri, 8 Dec 2000 10:00:01 +0200
From: "S. Goldstein" <goldstin@netvision.net.il>
Re: Mitzvos in Israel?

From: Feldman, Mark <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
>But we pasken that (most/all?) mitzvos hatluyos ba'aretz today are
>m'drabanan.  If so, it hardly seems likely that the mitzvah deoraissa of
>yishuv ha'aretz should be connected to the fulfillment of mitzvos drabanan.

>Not to mention those who believe this period to be atchalta d'geulah ...

According to such logic, maybe the Ramban's mitzva is only when one can come
with most of the Jewish People.  Why move now to help a future kdushas
ha'aretz?  Surely Moshiach can take it later.  Why not gain the mitzvos
d'rabannan of today?

Some acharonim view the kdushas ha'aretz of Ezra as d'oraisa.  Lacking rov
Jews makes its effect drabannan.  Accordingly, settling areas not covered by
olei bavel would be on land lacking kdushas E"Y.  This perhaps would mean no
mitzvah of yishuv even according to the Ramban.

Shlomo Goldstein

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Date: Sat, 9 Dec 2000 21:38:35 +0000
From: sadya n targum <targum1@juno.com>
Re: Hechsher on Bubble bath

Re the comment:

> R'Eidlitz's reply:
> "since they can leave a residue, the companies make sure that they should be
> Roui Leachila Bsha'as Hadchak."

	Meila cleansers, if the reference is to cleansers of eating utensils;
but bubble bath? On what will it leave a residue? And even if it contains
actual issur achila which is ra'uy la'achilas adam, who eats it?
Of course, if it's basar b'chalv, then the last question is irrelevant,
since it's asur b'hana'ah.

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Date: Sat, 9 Dec 2000 22:27:30 -0500
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Hechsher on Bubble bath

On Thu, Dec 07, 2000 at 03:51:29PM +0200, Akiva Atwood wrote:
: Given the large safety factor with some medication, I wouldn't automatically
: assume you couldn't "safely" eat a k'zayis worth. You would have to check
: with a poison specialist.

Is ra'ui la'achilah specifically unsafe to eat, or also something people
wouldn't eat? Or, to put it another way, how unhealthy does it have to
make a person?


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Date: Fri, 8 Dec 2000 13:23:23 -0500
From: "Wolpoe, Richard" <richard_wolpoe@ibi.com>
RE: Ani Bechorcha Eisav

Micha Berger:
> Bereishis Rabba connects Leah's rama'us on their wedding night
> to that incident. The Medrash has Yaakov ask Leah why she tricked
> him by pretending to be Racheil. She replies, "Every student has a
> teacher. Didn't you pretend to be Eisav?"

AISI it is pashut that Lavan fooled Yaakov. But it was not Yaakov who
decided to fool Yitzchak; rather it was Rivka.

So Leah was meremly following HER father's orders which is analogous
to Yaakov following HIS mother's orders, and any ramaus was actually
atrtributable to the two siblings, Lavan and Rivkah.

(of course while Rivkahs' tactics mathced those of Lavan I am not implying
her kavanoss were on the same madreiga)

Shalom and Regards,
Rich Wolpoe

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Date: Sat, 9 Dec 2000 23:09:19 -0500
From: Yitzchak Hollander <ysh@mindspring.com>
Re: Parhas Vayetzei

Chaim> 1) I noticed that the word for "giving animals to drink" and "kissing"
Chaim> has the same shoresh. Am I correct in assuming that the shoresh means to
Chaim> put ones lips onto something. Any grammarians out there?

Kiss is from N SH K (hmm, what about neshek (weapon)? ), and in
vayyishaq the dagesh in the shin is for the dropped nun.

But there's no dropped nun in vayyashq (at least in my chumash), so I
don't think it's the same word.

Chaim> 2) After the dream the posuk says Yaakov woke up (Vayeketz
Chaim> Yaakov). However 2 pesukim later the posuk says "Vayashkem Yaakov"-Yaakov
Chaim> got up in the morning. I've always understood that Yaakov woke up from
Chaim> the dream in the middle of the night. If so it seems he didn't get up
Chaim> out of bed right away but got up in the morning. What was he doing after
Chaim> he woke up from his dream? How could he have gone back to sleep once he
Chaim> realized he was in a holy place? Am I missing something?

It doesn't say that he went to sleep in the same place.  It doesn't even
say that he went back to sleep.  Perhaps he moved a few feet over, but
close enough to put up the matzeva in the morning.  Or perhaps the dream
happened close enough to sunrise that he didn't need to go back to sleep.

One issue that I wonder about (semi-derech-chidud) every year in Parshat
Vayyetze is how "vayyishaq yaakov lerachel" (29:11) is explained to
schoolchildren.  While obviously this is before Ma'amad Har Sinai,
hayitachen that Yaakov Avinu would kiss someone he's not married to?


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Date: Sun, 10 Dec 2000 00:37:29 +0000
From: sadya n targum <targum1@juno.com>
Re: V'yadbeik oso

Eli Linas asks:
> In VaYetzei 31:23, it says that when Lavan pursued Yaakov, he was yadveik
> him. It seems to me that this is somewhat of an unusual choice of words.
> The only use I'm aware of this root is to cling to, to stick to, to glue
> to, etc. Why didn't the pusik use the same lashon as it does in verse 25 -
> "v'yaseig Lavan es Yaakov."? 

In Shoftim 18:22, "vayadbiku es bnai Dan", the Metzudos explains
"vayadbiku: hisigum v'hayu krovim udvukim lahem". In Shmuel I 14:22, he
explains "vayadbku: radfu l'hiskarev aleihem".  It would seem that
"vayasigu" means to catch, while "yadveik" expresses chasing after and
catching up.

The Malbim in Shmuel I 31:2, on "Vayadbku Plishtim es Shaul", says, "ki
Shaul lacham brov koach v'lachen lo kasav vayasigu".  I'm not sure why
the degree of resistance changes the verb according to the Malbim.

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Date: Sun, 10 Dec 2000 08:04:29 +0200
From: "Carl and Adina Sherer" <sherer@actcom.co.il>
Re: V'yadbeik oso

On 9 Dec 00, at 23:18, Eli Linas wrote:
> In VaYetzei 31:23, it says that when Lavan pursued Yaakov, he was yadveik
> him...                       I've looked in a lot of places, including
> Malbim (don't have access to a Hirsch), but no one comments.

Hirsch doesn't either.

-- Carl

Please daven and learn for a Refuah Shleima for our son,
Baruch Yosef ben Adina Batya among the sick of Israel.  
Thank you very much.

Carl and Adina Sherer

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Date: Sun, 10 Dec 2000 23:04:29 +0200
From: D & E-H Bannett <dbnet@barak-online.net>
T'nu kavod laTorah

A recent posting on how Yitzhak fooled Eisav and got the b'rakha starts
as follows:

<<Subject: Bracha of "Vayitein L'chah">> and continues talking of
vayitein lekha.

Of course we all know there was no such b'rakha!

Vayitein l'kha means "and he gave you" Every chumash states that the
b'rakha starts, v'yitein l'kha "and He shall give you". This error is
of the type that requires the words to be repeated correctly.

So, a bit less sloppiness, please, in quoting the Torah. Even if a bit
inaccurate, it should at least make sense so as to be in the category of
"go'arim v'ein machzirim".

Hakol, t'nu kavod laTorah,

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Date: Sat, 9 Dec 2000 23:41:59 -0500
From: "Feldman, Mark" <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
RE: Shaatnez

From: Seth <sethm37@hotmail.com>
> So my question for the list is this: a while ago, various sources said that
> anything less than 10% is a miut that one does not even have to be hoshesh
> for (I have also heard 5%, but it is the same for this issue). 

From: "Wolpoe, Richard" <richard_wolpoe@ibi.com>
> Perhaps the principle of "kol she'fshar levareir..." applies?

I thought that we concluded in our "bug" discussion that if there is less
than 10%, that means we don't have to check bugs even if efshar levareir.

I once bought a suit and didn't have to check for shaatnez before a major
interview.  I told a posek that it was American made and he let me
temporarily wear the suit for the interview and check the suit afterwards
(based on the low incidence of shaatnez).

Kol tuv,

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Date: Sun, 10 Dec 2000 08:25:00 +0200
From: "S. Goldstein" <goldstin@netvision.net.il>

Dear Reb Seth shlita

The Bartenura says the machlokes in Kelayim 9:7 regards what type of wool
and linen combination is forbidden.  Who learns this relates to the relative
probability of wool and linen being found?  According to you, why would they
mention different types of clothes as opposed to different locations of

Shlomo Goldstein

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Date: Sat, 9 Dec 2000 23:50:05 -0500
From: "Feldman, Mark" <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
RE: Woman and learning

> Unbelievable as it may seem, for thousands of years Jewish women have 
> managed to maintain their belief and faith in Hashem without having a 
> seder kavua. Certainly, saying Tehillim does the trick also....
Chaim Brown wrote:
> But recognition that that is unsustainable in our society is what led 
> the C"C to his psak in Likutei Halachos.

From: Gil.Student@citicorp.com
> But the Chafetz Chaim only advocated teaching women the basics (and 
> perhaps the more advanced) of yiddishkeit so that they would recognize 
> that Judaism is profoundly true.

> We are now talking about women who have already had that education 
> continuing their studies independently.  That is totally different.

Undoubtedly, one cannot prove that the CC would support advanced learning
for women.  However, it is clear that one cannot argue that what Jewish
women did for thousands of years is relevant.  For thousands of years, women
did not study even the basics, yet the CC advocated change.  Once it is
agreed that change is necessary, the issue is one of degree.  You yourself
cited the article by R. Meir Twersky on this point where he argued that the
difference between RYBS (who started the Talmud shiur for women at Stern
College) and CC was one of degree, rather than of kind.

Kol tuv,

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Date: Sun, 10 Dec 2000 22:11:59 +0000
From: Chana/Heather Luntz <Chana/Heather@luntz.demon.co.uk>
Re: Woman and learning

Chana Lutz wrote:
> Isn't the whole question more complicated than this?  Because while the man 
> does indeed have a chiyuv to learn and the wife doesn't, according to many
> opinions, the husband also has a chiyuv to a) be mechanech his children (once 
> they reach the age of chinuch) and b) to support and look after them (at a
> minimum up to the age of six) while the wife doesn't.

Markowitz, Chaim <CMarkowitz@scor.com> writes
>       Without getting into a discussion of whether your assumptions are
>correct (and they very well might be-I'm just not in the position to agree
>or disagree) we do have the gemara in Brochos which clearly states that
>women get their schar by letting (or encouraging) their husbands to learn.

Yes.  And we also have statements that women receive schar for learning.
Of course, it is accepted that the schar for one who is commanded and
does is greater than that for the one who is not commanded and does.
However, in neither scenario, would the woman seem to be commanded and
doing, in both she is voluntarily doing, and receiving reward for so

Question, do you think that gemorra (its in sotah as well BTW where this
general discussion is) that states that women get reward for
waiting/encouraging is davka in relation to husbands, or that eg a
babysitter also gets equivalent schar in babysitting/encouraging so as
to allow the man to learn?  How about a woman who goes out to work (eg
on Wall Street) and supports lots of kollelim?

From: Chana Luntz <luntz@demon.co.uk>
> So isn't the correct analysis that rather than him "sacrificing"
> a bit of his learning to allow her to go to a shiur (say once a week),
> she is enabling his learning five or six (or however many) of the other
> nights a week she does not go to a shiur by agreeing to stay home and
> be his shaliach in fulfulling his mitzvah of looking after his children
> thereby freeing him to perform another mitzvah of learning.

Gershon Dubin <gdubin@loebandtroper.com> writes
>       Your analysis holds even if her intent is to go shopping/night
>out with the girls every single night of the week, thereby forcing him
>to take care of the kids and not learn. Is this what you mean?

Yes, it does, and that was the point I was intending to make.

The implication from the discussion up till now was that she had an
obligation, ie chiyuv, vis a vis the kids but not vis a vis learning.
The point I was trying to make was that, to see the full background, you
need to look at the obligations vis a vis the kids as well as the
obligations vis a vis learning.  And the picture you get when you look
at that is of the man trapped in a scenario of competing obligations,
with the woman by contrast free of both sets of competing obligations.
The point being, that, halachically speaking, she is doing him a favour,
not him doing her one by "letting" her go to a shiur or whatever else
takes her fancy.

Of course, you then need to look at other considerations, the question
of the schar one receives if one does a mitzvah from which one is ptur,
for example.


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Date: Sun, 10 Dec 2000 13:29:49 EST
From: MIKE38CT@aol.com

Has anyone ever been to a wedding where two witnesses were required for the 
badekin by the m'sader kedushin?

Are there any halachic implications of the badekin needing to be witnessed by 
two kosher eidim?

Michael Feldstein
Stamford, CT

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Date: Sun, 10 Dec 2000 08:55:55 +0200
From: "S. Goldstein" <goldstin@netvision.net.il>
Intent in Get

Dear Reb Michah,

As I mentioned in my previous posting, of course a get requires intent.
Gittin 85.  Someone who says he's divorcing his wife, is divorcing his wife.
The mumar says he even is cancelling previous statements that he wanted to
invalidate this get (previously mentioned SA).  Where is he lacking in
intent?  If however he doesn't know that it's a divorce, the get is totally

Shlomo Goldstein

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Date: Sun, 10 Dec 2000 20:26:27 -0500
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Intent in Get

On Sun, Dec 10, 2000 at 08:55:55AM +0200, S. Goldstein wrote:
: As I mentioned in my previous posting, of course a get requires intent.
: Gittin 85.  Someone who says he's divorcing his wife, is divorcing his wife.

So, one last shot at explaining my problem.

A husband who doesn't believe in halachah doesn't believe that a get
is a real means of divorce. Even if he has full intent to divorce his
wife, in his mind, the legal process is the "real divorce". The get is
just something he's doing to get his ex-wife to stop bugging him about
getting one, or to accomodate his family, his Rabbi, or whatever.

As a comparison, aren't we meikil by a couple who think they are married
by a non-halachic ceremony? That bi'ah never had kavannah for kiddushin
because he thinks he's married already?

So, how can someone have kavanah for a get if he doesn't believe in
the concept of gittin?


Micha Berger                 When you come to a place of darkness,
micha@aishdas.org            you do not chase out the darkness with a broom.
http://www.aishdas.org       You light a candle.
(973) 916-0287                  - R' Yekusiel Halberstam of Klausenberg zt"l

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Date: Sun, 10 Dec 2000 22:57:17 -0600
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Urn Halacha

B"H our son's Bar Mitzva this past Shabbos was very nice. Several local and 
New York area Avodah chaverim were in attendance.

Friday night, we were running short of hot water in our urn (a larger urn 
the caterer was supposed to provide had not materialized). The caterer had 
a non-Jewish worker here. I perused the Shulchan Shlomo of RSZA and found 
that he is mattir amira l'akum d'orysa b'shinui as shvus d'shvus b'malokm 
mitzva. Of course, there is the problem of direct hano'oh from the bishul 
of a goy for you on Shabbos. So, what I did was to have her turn the hot 
water faucet on with her elbow, and spray hot water from the sink into the 
urn (the hot water is more than yad soledes bo).

BTW, on the lighter side, she used hot water for her own purposes on other 
occasions thereafter. Every time she turned on the tap, she did so with her 
elbow. Eventually this may become k'darko for her :-) .

ygb@aishdas.org      http://www.aishdas.org/rygb

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