Avodah: Volume 6, Number 115

Monday, January 29 2001

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
  1. Chas V'sholom
  2. Re: RHS vs RSZA & societal changes
  3. Hawaiian date line
  4. Re: Standing with feet apart
  5. Heicha kedusha
  6. Re: Hawaiian date line
  7. Har Habayit
  8. RE: Har Habayit
  9. Re: Har Habayit
  10. Daf Yomi Question
  11. chumash question, one week late
  12. Request for Sources
  13. Re: RHS vs RSZA & societal changes
  14. Re: hefsed mrubah
  15. Re: Dor Revi'i and TSBP
  16. Administrivia -- a request for mechilah (was Re: Har Habayit)

Date: Sun, 28 Jan 2001 08:26:16 -0800
From: "Michael Frankel" <mechyfran...@zdnetonebox.com>
Subject:
Chas V'sholom


RYGB writes:
> Those who have opined that RSZA did not, c"v, understand the nature
> of fluorescent lights, should be me'ayein in the SSK 32:67 and fn 170,
> and in RSZA's addenda (vol. 3) p. 54.

this is a curious formulation, at least to me. i do not wish to argue
whether RSZA did or did not grasp the essential physics of the fluorescent
light (i do not know one way or the other). it is rather RYGB's "chas
v'sholom" which is intriguing as it suggests he precludes even entertaining
the possibility that such could be the case. do you believe that an odom
godol/poseiq cannot possibly have erred in his t'fisoh of the physical
m'tzius underlying a p'saq?

Mechy Frankel				H: (301) 593-3949
mechyfran...@zdnetonebox.com		W: (703) 588-7424
michael.fran...@osd.mil


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Date: Sat, 27 Jan 2001 19:42:05 +0200
From: "S. Goldstein" <golds...@netvision.net.il>
Subject:
Re: RHS vs RSZA & societal changes


RMosheFeldman wrote>
>Even your last statement is debatable.  If someone lives in an area where
>there are no frum Jews, he will not think that eating in the street (e.g.,
>eating a candy bar while waiting for the bus) shows a lack of proper derech
>eretz.  Why distinguish between psul eidus (where you are willing to
>acknowledge societal change) and proper derech eretz?

I only meant if RSZA said it still applies today, perhaps it's limited.
Proper derech eretz, perhaps, is absolute and not dependent on society.

Shlomo Goldstein


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Date: Sun, 28 Jan 2001 08:16:55 -0800
From: "Michael Frankel" <mechyfran...@zdnetonebox.com>
Subject:
Hawaiian date line


Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer wrote [to Areivim]:
> Not that anybody asks me, but I would pasken on the issue straight
> Chazon  Ish, and rule that they keep Shabbos on Saturday l'kulla and
> l'chumra.

Gil Student:
> When I used to daven in R. Feivel Cohen's shul, one Shabbos he announced
> to the kahal that it is assur for anyone to do melacha in Hawaii on
> Friday (in addition to Shabbos) unless they are talmidim of the Chazon
> Ish.

<noahrothst...@mindspring.com> Subject: Re: dateline sfaikos
> Very interesting. I'm a little surprised that he said 'assur'. Was
> the Chazon Ish a Daas Yachid? I had thought the opposite, that rov poskim
> hold that Sat. is Shabbos in HI.

Much of the discussion of hawaiian shabbos is puzzling since it seems to
cast the possibility of keeping shabbos on the "usual" day -- saturday
-- as dependent on acceptance of the CI's shitoh. but in fact, the only
"problematic" landmasses where the jewish day can be off by one (according
to a bewildering variety of shitos) are those between the longitude 90 deg
east of jerusalem (in the sea of japan) and the recognized international
date line (roughly 180 deg from greenwich but zagging a lot). however
hawaii lies east of the international date line as well as east of almost
every jewish date line shitoh, so shabbos is saturday there not just
according to CI, but according to practically everybody. Thus there is
no particular need to accept the CI for "traditional" hawaiian shabbosim
while doing so, per RYGB, may lead to other difficulties.

that said, R. F. Cohen's chashoshos, as reported in above posting, re
hawaii are certainly reasonable since some (though not much) precedent in
the acharonim exists that places hawaii over the line when flying from the
us mainland. -- these shitos (R. Tokachinsky/Hayomom, R. Slonimski and
R. Sh'muel Mohliver quoted in Divrei Chakhomim, R. Henkin in Hapardes )
basically take the date line at 180 deg from jeruslam but differ about
bending it here and there to avoid passing through land. but his reported
fomulation is quite puzzling when it limits the "heter" to hold shabbos
on saturday to students of CI. Indeed the suggestion that one do so --
as RYGB seems to prefer -- brings with it a host of other problems,
not in hawaii, but elsewhere, where following CI will put you outside
the majority consensus. this will surface in japan (not shanghai as
suggested by one poster) where the CI's shitoh (90 deg east of Jerusalem
-- basically in the sea separating japan from the chinese mainland
with adjustment to hug the shore line of the mainland to the north and
australia to the south) would have you holding shabbos on sunday. as
the CI directed -- against the consensus of all the other g'dolim who
attended the famous meeting in jerusalem during WWII called to advise the
jewish internees on the japanese mainland. Since RYGB wishes to pasken
like CI bein l'quloh bein l'chumroh, i'm wondering what he will do the
next time he passes a weekend in japan, as the CI was quite adamant that
the sort of compromise shitoh -- to refrain from m'lochoh on two days --
was inappropriate and any japanese saturday should be treated as a full
yom chol for all purposes -- no wussy compromises.

BTW a good place to have chashoshos is australia. (glad i passed up
the last two meetings i was invited to there). there you can either be
a CI guy (or gal) with the date line bending around the shore line but
basically keeping you in the asian zone -- which suggests a potential
new bin to, helpfully, properly categorize the precise halochic state
of your australian neighbors -- those who are maqpid not to go to mixed
swimming only on sundays when a dip in the ocean could put them over the
line -- a kind of tartei l'rei'usoh leading to beach avoidance. or the
"straight" 90 deg shitoh which cuts through western australia, or the
"straight" 114 deg shitoh which cuts between the longitudes of sydney
and melbourne. whew.

Anyone interested in an encylopedic compendium of all the shitos on this
subject along with the full text of all the relevant monographs, t'shuvos,
articles, qunt'rosim, maps, etc. would be advised to acquire the volume
"shitos qav hata'arich b'kadur ho'oretz" (926 pp) by y'hudoh aryeh leib
blum (never heard of him otherwise). i don't know its availability,
but it does come with the author's address and phone numbers in america
and israel which i'd be happy to supply off line.

Mechy Frankel				H: (301) 593-3949
mechyfran...@zdnetonebox.com		W: (703) 588-7424
michael.fran...@osd.mil


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Date: Sun, 28 Jan 2001 20:36:09 -0000
From: "Seth Mandel" <seth...@hotmail.com>
Subject:
Re: Standing with feet apart


[NOTE: I apologize for length. For those not interested in this lengthy
argument, please just read the paragraph marked below.]

Before I respond in detail, I would say that something in my posting
got your dander up. It appears that you thought that I was saying that
everyone should adopt RYBS's position on a certain subject. If you read
my post carefully, you will see that I never said that. I don't think
anybody has ever claimed that all people should become followers of RYBS,
and no talmid hokhom has ever claimed that about anyone. As R. Micha says,
HQB'H created people differently, and different people find different
d'rokhim more appealing. No one derekh is The Right Way.

If you look at what I was responding to, it was this: R. Micha: <There
is a Brisker chumrah to stand with feet together for all of chazaras
hashatz.>

I intended to show, and did show, that this is not just a chumrah of
Brisk, but implicit in the Rambam. I also said that <First of all,
the ReMo' himself in OH 124:4 says "and some say that the entire
congregation should stand" during hazoras hashatz. The MB in s'k 20
quotes... the reason "k'ilu mitpall'lim b'atzman damya v'khen haya minhag
haqadmonim." It is clear that that would mean that everyone should stand
just as if he were davening himself, i.e. with feet together and facing
east.> I intended to show that others, besides the Rambam, have held
this position. NOT that every one has. L'ma'aseh, I can name for you
several sefaradi and Teimani minyanim in E'Y that practise this and
claim that that was the way their ancestors practised, and I can name
some other g'dolim, not Briske, in E'Y and outside, that have practised
this. But I never claimed anywhere in my post that I (or anyone else)
held that this a position mandatory for everyone.

R. Shlomo Goldstein: <Not so clear to me. Why didn't PMG or MB or AH or
Remo or Darkei Moshe say so?>

The MB was explaining the ReMo' who says to stand. So how do you interpret
"k'ilu mitpall'lim b'atzman"? Let him say "stand so you should have
better kavvono," or "stand because of its hashivus," not that the reason
is you are supposed to act as if you yourself were davening. "As if you
are davening yourself" implies that you behave as if you were davening:
standing, facing mizrah, feet together, etc.

SG: <Why didn't the Rambam say so? [You wrote:] "Just like those who
don't know how to daven stand with their feet together, so do those who
have davened." Where does the Rambam say either half?>

The Rambam says black on white that the halokho is the same for everyone
during hazoras hashatz, whether they have davened already or whether they
are she'einu baqi, they all stand. To my mind, that implies they stand the
same way. So you will argue that he didn't mean everything, he just meant
standing upright. After all, in Chapter 5 he lists things separately: "
'amidah; nokhah haMiqdash; tiqqun hagguf; tiqqun hamalbush; etc." But
that is clearly not the case. The t'shuva that I quoted specifically
shows that the Rambam held that everyone should face mizrah during
hazoras haShatz. So the Rambam must be using 'omdin in 9:3 to include
the other halokhos of how you stand. According to you, why should anyone
stand facing east?

SM: <t'fillas hatzibbur works precisely because one mouth is saying the
prayers for a minyan, and a minyan... represents klal Yisroel. So klal
Yisroel is saying its t'fillo, with one mouth saying it for all. I think
that the Rambam holds that that is precisely why someone who is not baqi
can only be yotzei this way, and not by listening to someone else daven
his own t'filla...>

SG: <Great idea. Accordingly, neither the baqi nor the aino baki should
have to keep their feet together because now not individuals, but klal
yisroel is davenning! But this is all hypothesis.>

Now I am bewildered. Do you not agree that someone who is not baqi should
stand while the Shatz is motzi him? I thought everyone agreed that the
Shatz just says the words for the einu baqi, but the einu baqi still must
stand, facing east, feet together, properly attired, etc. Since that is
the case, all I am adding is that according to the Rambam everyone should
stand this way, because they all must take part in t'fillas haTzibbur.

SM: <But why would a person just stand, with feet not together and not
facing mizrah? I think it is common precisely because most people in
Ashkenaz in recent generations used to sit, and now it is considered a
"yeshiveshe humro" to stand. So those who stand feel they are being
mahmir on themselves, and not doing it me'iqqar hadin.>

SG: <Why make one rosh yeshiva's chumro a question against everyone
else?> I never said that everyone in the world must hold like the Rambam
or be a Brisker (this was R. Hayyim's position, not RYBS's), and I fail
to see why you think I did. I said that people feel it is a humro.

SG: <From your quote it seems RYBS did NOT find it an integral part of
chazaras hashatz!>

I don't know where you find that in what I wrote: I said only that RYBS
considered standing me'iqqar haddin.

<Please look at siman 95 where SA speaks about feet together. Note sif 4.
For KEDUSHA one should put feet together. Please note that PMG or MB
or AH or Remo or Darkei Moshe do not say that anyway feet are together
for all of chazaras hashatz! See Beis Yosef that it is the chidush of
the Trumas HaDeshen to have feet together for kedusha. The Tur does not
mention this. It seems the Tur, BY, Trumas HaDeshen and acharonim who
all learned the Rambam did not learn like you.>

Nor did I have any intention of arguing that all rishonim must be
"Rambamers."

I was arguing that a careful reading of the Rambam shows that this was his
position. The very fact that the ReMo' feels the need to add in siman 124
that everyone should stand shows that many (most?) people were sitting.
After all, where did the mehabber say that you should sit? I think it
is precisely because when the mehabber quotes the Trumas haDeshen in
siman 125, the ReMo' felt that the implication was you should sit for
the rest of hazoras haShatz, because feet together means standing,
feet apart means sitting.

But I am not arguing that there is any proof from the ReMo. I hold there
is not clear proof from him either way, just like there is no clear proof
from other rishonim that everyone should stand during hazoras haShatz. I
have chosen to quote the places where it seems to me there is proof:
the MB's explanation of the ReMo, and the Rambam. As far as "It seems
the Tur, BY, Trumas HaDeshen and acharonim who all learned the Rambam
did not learn like you," I think that has an incorrect premise. None
of them quotes the Rambam. Do you mean to say that they all must quote
the Rambam and follow his shitta whenever he says something that they
would disagree with? There are many examples where the Rambam clearly
states something different than the Rosh or the Tur, and the Tur, the
BY, and other aharonim do not mention that. Just look at the example of
neros hanukka that we discussed here a while ago: it is clear from the
Rambam that the ba'al haBayis lights all the candles himself, all 80 on
the last night using his example. The Tur, BY and others only discuss
the Rambam's shitta about the number of candles, not who lights. They
didn't go into that.

SG: <If many Jews stand with feet apart, they are probably correct.>
Maybe, if they know the reason why they are standing. Maybe not, if they
are just following what they believe to be "the yeshivishe minhag." Do you
not agree that many Jews sit and talk during the hazoro, as the PM says?
Are they right? They are just doing what they saw everyone else doing
when they grew up.

SG: <Why must they be wrong if they learn in yeshivos?>

You should ask m'hila for implying that I said this. Who would ever say
such a thing? Please read my post and show me where I implied such a
thing. What I did imply is that some things people in yeshivos do because
they hold there is a halakhic inyan in doing it, and they will tell you
what it is; and some things they do because it is the yeshivishe minhag
(remember the discussion about white shirts and black hats). I have
no quarrel with them trying to imitate everyone else; if everyone else
stands, let them stand, too. But I am saying that if asked, they will tell
you it is a humra, not me'iqqar hadin, not the shitta of the Rambam. The
more learned ones may quote the MB and the PM that "ba'avonoseinu harabbim
everyone sits and talks," implying you should stand. When asked why
stand, they will give an answer like yours, <My svoro is that standing
helps focus and connection to the chazaras hashatz.>

I have no quarrel with such a s'voro. I just don't think that that is
what the Rambam or the MB implies, and I think that that is not a halokho,
just a "hekhe timtza," a good advice.

There are two other pieces of support for the Rambam's position that I
did not mention the first time 'round:

1) In Mishna Bikkurim 3:7 it states that hazal established a taqqono
so people who did not know what to say would not be embarrassed. The
Rambam in Hil. Avelus 4:1 says that they established something similar
in takhrikhin, so as not to embarrass people that couldn't afford fancy
shrouds.

[This is also the place where the Rambam condemns conspicuous consumption
such as expensive weddings, bar mitzvas, and funerals: see 4:2, that
it is 1) unrefined ("gassus ruah"); 2) bal tashhis; and 3) ma'ase goyim
(the latter probably only by funerals).]

It appears that the Rambam holds hazal wanted to accomplish something
similar in t'filla, not to embarrass she'einu baqi. Not only does he
say that everyone stands the same during the hazoro, he also says (9:2),
"umi she'einu yodea' l'hitpallel 'omed v'shoteq 'ad sheyitpallel sh'liah
tzibbur b'lahash 'im sh'ar ha'am." He certainly does not have the din
of 'omed bit'filla. It appears to me the reason is that the Rambam is
emphasizing that in outward signs, everything is the same for she'einu
baqi and a baqi, and thus the she'einu baqi is not embarrassed.

2) By dukhaning, the g'moro says that the kohanim are 'oqer raglayim
during R'tze. It seems a very strange lashon to use, unless they were
standing with their feet together.

Finally, I think that it is very commendable to stand during hazoras
haShatz, whether feet together or feet apart, if it aids one in listening
to hazoras haShatz. I think that the bigger problem is people talking,
rattling pushkes, or plain not listening. That is why I think it is so
ridiculous to see someone standing engrossed in a g'moro. You are counted
as one of the minyan for hazoras haShatz whether you are standing or
sitting, or even standing on your head, as long as you are listening. I
only wished to add that according to the Rambam you accomplish something
by standing with your feet together facing mizrah, while standing with
your feet apart does not appear to be a halakhic inyan but rather a
hekhe timtza to aid in concentration.

K't,
Seth Mandel


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Date: Sun, 28 Jan 2001 17:44:15 -0500 (EST)
From: jjba...@panix.com
Subject:
Heicha kedusha


From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
> I was taught this notion as tzvei dinim: 1- helping the ignorant;
> 2- the community's tefillah.
 
> The power of the chazan to daven on behalf of someone who can't is,
> in RSM's view a consequence of it being the tzibbur's tefillah.
 
So how does all this fit with the variants I've come across?

1) Lechatchila H"K Ashkenaz: in, e.g., a late-running Mincha minyan,
the sha"tz starts, says through Hakel Hakadosh, then the rest of the
tzibur starts from H' sfatai tiftach while the sha"tz continues with
the atah chonen.

2) Lehatchilah H"K Sefarad: in, e.g., musaf.  The congregation says
milah b'milah with the sha"tz through kedusha, then continues to the
end.  This is also done if someone comes in late to a minyan, he can
say his private amidah on the second pass, milah bemilah with the
sha"tz, then "go like the wind" through the rest of it so he can answer
Modim with the tzibur when the sha"tz gets up to it.

3) Bedieved I: there was no minyan, person 10 comes in, the other 9
are hanging around, somebody gets up to shmone esreh, and starts, and
says aloud through kedushah.

4) Bedieved II: there was a minyan, but someone didn't get there in 
time even for the 2nd pass (as above in (2)).  he then says aloud through
kedushah after the rest of the group has finished.  (Lubavitchers seem to
like this one).


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Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2001 09:18:25 -0500
From: Gil.Stud...@citicorp.com
Subject:
Re: Hawaiian date line


There was also an RJJ Journal article on this topic by R. David Pahmer (based 
largely on R. Hershel Schachter's shiurim).

Gil Student


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Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2001 13:02:17 -0500
From: "Shinnar, Meir" <Meir.Shin...@rwjuh.edu>
Subject:
Har Habayit


With regard to the discussion of the har habayit, let me suggest another
perspective.

RYBS differentiated between two different aspects of our relationship to am
yisrael, put at different times under somewhat different names (with some
difference in connotation) - the notion of brit avot and brit sinai, or the
notion of am and edah.  He mentioned that in Germany, one of the rabbanim
told him that he had no connection with the non dati Polish Jews, because he
focused purely on brit sinai - our halachic obligations. 

This repudiation of the national element of Judaism and of the notion of
brit avot is formulated (very articulately) by R Breuer (although I don't
know whether  R Breuer would have agreed with this unnamed German rav). RYGB
has written about R Breuer and in defense of the German tradition.  Indeed,
according to RYGB it is precisely the fact that the har habayit has purely
"leumi" significance means that ownership does not have "dati" significance.
This is the heart of the issue.

Har habayit is one of the supreme symbols of brit avot - of our relatedness
to the past and to am yisrael, even removed from other specific halachic
categories.  I think that this is what R Amital is saying in his speech, and
apparently R Sonnenfeld (according to the stories cited).  For them, the
paramount leumi significance means that it has dati signficance - brit avot
is also a halachic (and religious) category.

What is also clear from the discussion that to RYGB, har habayit lacks the
emotional significance that it does to others on the group - after all, it
is a place with mosques which we can not visit.  The emotional significance
of symbols is not something that is usefully debated (after the basic facts
behind the symbol are explained, and all participants here are aware of
these facts), but I think   that RYGB's position on the emotional
significance of har habayit to the observant (and nonobsevant) communities
is a minority.  

The  discussion about its lack of significance therefore suggests that
current litvak (and yekke) education can produce a major talmid hakahm like
RYGB, for whom the entire notion of national heritage and symbols has no
resonance or practical implications.  Al ele ani bokhiya..

Meir Shinnar


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Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2001 14:42:21 -0500
From: "Wolpoe, Richard" <richard_wol...@ibi.com>
Subject:
RE: Har Habayit


Shinnar, Meir
> With regard to the discussion of the har habayit, let me suggest another
> perspective.
<snip>
> What is also clear from the discussion that to RYGB, har habayit lacks the
> emotional significance that it does to others on the group - after all, it
> is a place with mosques which we can not visit.  The emotional significance
> of symbols is not something that is usefully debated...

> The  discussion about its lack of significance therefore suggests that
> current litvak (and yekke) education can produce a major talmid hakahm like
> RYGB, for whom the entire notion of national heritage and symbols has no
> resonance or practical implications.  Al ele ani bokhiya..

The cerebrealization of Judaism in general has been damaging to our
sensitivity, to our emotions. Hirsch balanced the intellecutal with a
passion for using Mitzvos as a way of connecting with G-d as well as a
method for elevating one's soul, etc.

Some of the {frequently unintentional} remarks about nusach, tefillah,
piyyut, melody etc. reflect a very narrow "left-brained" focus which can
really desensitize people to having a national identity us as a people.
We can talk about hilchos tefillah but can we still cry out from our
hearts (shifchi kamayim libeich)?

Hassidism is one response, I suppose that Shlomoh Carlebach had issues
with his cool Litvisher training at Lakewood.

For me, being a Ba'al Tefillah and relating to Judaism via nusach and
music has allowed me to balance my intellectual side with a more emotional
aprroach. But how many Yeshiva bachurim think of Yosselle Rosenblatt as
a hero on par with a Chofetz Chaim? I'll bet not many.


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Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2001 14:52:32 -0500
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: Har Habayit


On Mon, Jan 29, 2001 at 02:42:21PM -0500, Wolpoe, Richard wrote:
: For me, being a Ba'al Tefillah and relating to Judaism via nusach and
: music has allowed me to balance my intellectual side with a more emotional
: aprroach. But how many Yeshiva bachurim think of Yosselle Rosenblatt as
: a hero on par with a Chofetz Chaim? I'll bet not many.

I wouldn't consider the CC, or any ba'al mussar, as my paragon of
cerebralism. I would have asked how many Yeshiva bochrim see R' Yisrael
Salanter (emotional approach) on par with R' Chaim Brisker (cerebral). The
answer yields a result indicating that we're much closer to the
shvil hazahav.

(Another flaw in your comparison is that few of my generation and
those younger than me are moved by traditional chazanus. We therefore
can not relate 1st-hand to C' Y. Rozenblatt as a force to move someone
religiously.)

-mi


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Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2001 10:43:54 -0500
From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.du...@juno.com>
Subject:
Daf Yomi Question


The minhag of prompting the kohanim word by word does not seem to have
been done in the time of the Gemara,  according to my understanding of
today's daf.  When did it start?

Gershon
gershon.du...@juno.com


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Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2001 10:45:26 -0500
From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.du...@juno.com>
Subject:
chumash question, one week late


The posuk describes Elisheva bas Aminadav achos Nachshon, to teach you to
investigate the kallah's brother. The very next posuk appears to negate
this, as Elazar took mibnos Putiel,  which according to one meaning is
mibnos Yisro shepitem agalos la'avodah zara.  Comments?

Gershon
gershon.du...@juno.com


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Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2001 13:14:17 -0500
From: "Wolpoe, Richard" <richard_wol...@ibi.com>
Subject:
Request for Sources


Can anyone point me to sources explaining the 
      "tzav letzav kav lekav"
verses in lats week's Haftarah, in particular anything al pi drash or sod?

Shalom and Regards,
Richard Wolpoe
Richard_Wol...@ibi.com (at work)
Richard_Wol...@alumnimail.yu.edu


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Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2001 09:38:27 -0500
From: "Feldman, Mark" <MFeld...@CM-P.COM>
Subject:
Re: RHS vs RSZA & societal changes


RMosheFeldman wrote>
>Even your last statement is debatable.  If someone lives in an area where
>there are no frum Jews, he will not think that eating in the street (e.g.,
>eating a candy bar while waiting for the bus) shows a lack of proper derech
>eretz.  Why distinguish between psul eidus (where you are willing to
>acknowledge societal change) and proper derech eretz?

Shlomo Goldstein <golds...@netvision.net.il>:
: I only meant if RSZA said it still applies today, perhaps it's limited.
: Proper derech eretz, perhaps, is absolute and not dependent on society.

But you still haven't explained why that should be.

Kol tuv,
Moshe


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Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2001 09:41:31 -0500
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: hefsed mrubah


On Thu, Jan 25, 2001 at 09:26:26AM -0500, David Riceman wrote:
: Now reread the Rama's introduction. He says he follows the principle of
: "halacha k'bathrai", not the majority...

An interesting contrast to the SA. The question that came to my mind is
whether we can generalize from this observation, and if so -- in what way?

Admirers of Ta Shma and Agus might argue that this is an Ashkenaz / Sepahard
difference. Ashkenaz, having no single text describing our mesorah as well
as the Bavli does for Sepharad, got use to relying on what is rather than
polling texts.

OTOH, fans of Dr Haym Soloveitchik could point to some rupture that was
putting the Sepharad of the Beis Yosef into a reconstruction period, and
therefore the mechabeir took a more textual approach. Ashkenaz, being
more stable in the Rama's day, relied on basra'i and what was nahug.

-mi

-- 
Micha Berger                 When you come to a place of darkness,
mi...@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: Mon, 29 Jan 2001 12:06:44 -0500
From: "David Glasner" <DGLAS...@ftc.gov>
Subject:
Re: Dor Revi'i and TSBP


Micha Berger wrote (6:110):
>: minhog Yisroel k'din not k'takana or k'g'zeirah.  Sanhedrin rules.

> But I'm not talking about whether or not minhag Yisrael created the takanah,
> but rather whether there is a minhag Yisrael not to reopen earlier piskei
> halachah even when halachically allowed. IOW, apparantly poskim have a minhag
> not to use all the power at their disposal.

And I'm saying you can't compare how individual poskim are noheig to
pasken with the conduct of a Sanhedrin. The Sanhedrin of R. Yehoshua and
R. Eliezer could have refrained from using the power at their disposal
and acceded to the Divine Will and paskened according to R. Eliezer
as they were instructed to do. But they were defiant and paskened as
they saw fit, and the RShO understood. You can' t tell me that a minhog
Yisroel is more sacrosanct than the r'tzon ha-Shem. (Actually, you can,
but I will never believe you.)

>:> Second, I think that takanos include the rest of dinim diRabbanan, because
>:> the taxonomy in Seifer haMitzvos only has the two catagories. According
>:> to the Rambam, every diRabbanan is either a din or a gezeirah.

>: Well, to revert to halakhah l'ma'asseh, even you will acknowledge, I
>: think, that poskim today have some leeway in revisiting dinei d'rabban
>: that were paskened one way in an earlier generation...

> Yes, but only "some". And not if the generation is early enough that we
> assume gadol mimenu bichachmah. With a few exceptions who some would follow
> despite the disagreement with those of an earlier era.

I seem to be unable to formulate clearly the distinction that I have
in mind here, so let me tell a story which was once told to me in the
name of the Rav. When he was a small child, the Rav was in Brisk at
the home of his grandfather on the night of Shemini Atzeres. Because
of inclement weather, they were unable to make kiddush in the sukoh or
to go to sleep in the sukoh. But in the middle of the night, they were
awoken by R. Chaim himself, who having observed that the precipitation
had stopped, was waking everyone to spend the rest of the night in
the sukoh. The Brisker Rebbetzin was none too happy at this turn of
events, and protested to R. Chaim that there was no obligation to go
to sleep in the sukoh even on sukot once one had permissibly gone to
sleep inside the house because of inclement weather. R. Chaim responded
that G'ra said that the obligation to go back into the sukah is more
stringent on the night of Shemini Atzeres than on Sukos itself k'dai
l'hotzi mi-libom shel tz'doikim who say that there is no obligation of
sukoh on Shemini Atzeres. But the Brisker Rebbetzin was not through.
She immediately shot back at R. Chaim. And since when do you always
pasken llike the G'ra? Didn't you just read Koheles on Shabbos from a
chumish and without a brokho even though the G'ra says to read from
a klaf with a brokho [or maybe it was the other way around, I don't
remember who holds what]. R. Chaim smiled and shook his head and said,
I'm sorry you don't understand. To read koheles from a klaf with a brocho
was a p'sak of the G'ra. As a ba'al horo'oh, I am entitled to reach a
different conclusion from the G'ra and pasken accordingly l'halakhah.
But to go back into the sukoh on the night of Shemini Atzeres wasn't
a p'sak of the G'ra, it was an akshonus of the G'ra. I have no right
to disagree with an akshonus of the G'ra. When telling the story, the
Rav concluded by saying that he didn't think that his grandmother was
persuaded by R. Chaim's reasoning. But I do agree with it and that is
the spirit in which I interpret the distinction between Mamrim 2:1 and
2:2-3, though I am unable to formulate the distinction operationally.

>:                                                             So there
>: are obviously gray areas where we know (or think we know) that the din
>: d'rabbanan can change despite the rather categorical words of the Rambam.

> Now it's my turn to be confused. The KM puts piskei halachah into
> 2:1. That means that lima'aseh, we can change a p'sak in a din even if
> we can't overturn the din ligamrei. We can reinterpret the law but we
> can't repeal it.

Well, it can at least be changed by interpreting the g'zeirah so narrowly that
its domain of application is effectively eliminated as Hazal did with the 
halalakhah of ben soreir u-moreh.  A Sanhedrin could do at least that under 
Mamrim 2:2-3.  I'm also saying that the set of g'zeirot, takanot and s'yagim
that are subject to the minyan and hokhma restrictions of Mamrim 2:2-3
is itself an issue that requires more analysis than you seem to think.

> The power the poseik of today assumes now in relation to earlier poskim
> fits 2:1 -- it still parallels that of one Sanhedrin in relation to
> earlier ones.

Not quite.  The whole point of the Keseph Mishnah is that it doesn't seem
to work like that, and the question is why.  That brings us back full 
circle to the hakdamah of the Dor Revi'i and the various alternative 
explanations that have been mentioned.

>: And some people, as you know, reject such revisions, for example all
>: those who reject the "kula" of R. Moshe Feinstein on non-Jewish milk.

> First, we don't know if we hold like the Rambam lima'aseh. 

To speak of holding like the Rambam lima'aseh is a misuse of terms.
Hilkhot Mamrim is not halakhah l'ma'aseh it is hilkh'ta d'm'shih'ta.  The
Keseph Mishnah is asking what is the relationship between the ideal
p'sak as rendered by the Rambam and the actual practice of 
halakhah l'ma'aseh.

>:> Haven't we discussed this before -- albeit not from this angle? RYBS
>:> would say that they couldn't. Apparantly the Gra and R' Kook would say
>:> that it could only override such a p'sak lehachmir...

>: No, no, no.  They were all talking about how individual morei ho-ra'ah may
>: pasken, not about what a Sanhedrin could do.

> But Hil Mamrim has no halachah lima'aseh whatsoever without assuming that
> the authority of one derives from the other.

Again I say: Mamrim is not halakhah l'ma'aseh.  The question is how do we
explain the difference between halakhah l'ma'aseh and the p'sak of the 
Rambam.  See the Dor Revi'i.

David Glasner
dglas...@ftc.gov


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Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2001 17:00:26 -0500
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Administrivia -- a request for mechilah (was Re: Har Habayit)


On Mon, Jan 29, 2001 at 01:02:17PM -0500, Shinnar, Meir wrote:
: What is also clear from the discussion that to RYGB, har habayit lacks the
: emotional significance that it does to others on the group...
: The  discussion about its lack of significance therefore suggests that
: current litvak (and yekke) education can produce a major talmid hakahm like
: RYGB, for whom the entire notion of national heritage and symbols has no
: resonance or practical implications.  Al ele ani bokhiya..

I have to ask mechilah from RYGB publicly for letting this slip past me.

The top 2/3 of the post was about RYBS, the siginificance of har Habayis
and (to me, at least) might explain R' Amital's distinction -- that
something could be about HKBH and yet not be "religious": because it's
about kedushas ha'am, not kedushas ha'eidah.

So, I didn't sufficiently read the rest of the post before approving it.

In the future, when you disagree with someone to the extent that you
think it's pathetic -- and what is pathos if not "bokhiyah" -- you ought
to be assuming you didn't fully understand. Such a gross underestimation
and gross mischaracterization of another chaveir is uncalled for.

Vehara'ayah, of all of the Rabbonim I deal with regularly, RYGB is among
the *least* cerebral (totally unlike the "kalter litvak" stereotype) and
someone who is committed in AishDas's mission to increase for hislahavus
and hargashah.

I suggest RMS and others read or reread RYGB's articles in
<http://www.aishdas.org/rygb>. His attachment to Mussar, Telzh, ha'Olim,
R' Isaac Breuer, and R' AY Kaplan are rife with dealing with yahadus on
an emotional level, while not ignoring his cerebrum.

-mi

-- 
Micha Berger                 When you come to a place of darkness,
mi...@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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