Avodah Mailing List

Volume 07 : Number 052

Monday, June 4 2001

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Thu, 31 May 2001 11:31:50 -0400
From: gil.student@citicorp.com
Re: Yiud

> If she is not willing, then any action of Yiud is null and void. However, 
> Tosefos (DH: SheKen), in Kiddushin 5A states in the name of Rabbenu Tam that 
> indeed, a master may at his discretion perform Yiud forcibly upon his Hebrew 
> maidservant in that it is MeDaitah of the father who IS willing, having sold 
> her into slavery which he may forcibly do. So, at least according to RT, my 
> question remains.
Tosafos says in a few places in the beginning of Kiddushin that a girl's 
marriage can not be against her will.  However, there is a presumption that a 
father will do what is in his daughter's best interests.  Therefore, a father's 
da'as can substitute for a young girl's da'as.

Your problem is really that a father has a very large say over what happens in a
girl's life, including whom she will marry while you assume that she should have

Gil Student

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Date: Thu, 31 May 2001 11:26:43 EDT
From: Joelirich@aol.com
Re: Yiud

In a message dated Thu, 31 May 2001 11:19:00am EDT, Harry Maryles
<hmaryles@yahoo.com> writes:
>       The minor girl has no recourse whatsoever and must stay married
> to her master for the rest of her life if the master so chooses. How
> does Derachecha Darcei Noam apply here?

Without commenting on the specifics here, AIUI dracheha darkei noam is a
principle that applies only when there is no clear guidance on the issue
(similar to bror lo mitah yafeh if we're unsure of which death penalty
applies) It would not apply to contravene an otherwise "clear"(through
revelation or drashot) gilui of the ratzon hashem. Am I missing something?


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Date: Thu, 31 May 2001 17:55:37 -0400
From: "David Glasner" <DGLASNER@ftc.gov>
Re: Dor Revi'i on Sotah

To be posted soon on the Dor Revi'i website

v'im lo nitm'ah ha-ishah u-t'horah hi v'naktah v'nizr'ah zerah:  

Rashi comments:

    If she did not defile herself during her seclusion (lo nitm'ah),
    and she is untainted by any other incident (u-t'horah), then she will
    be unharmed by the waters of bitterness. Moreover she will conceive
    children, so that if she had previously borne children in pain,
    she will now give birth easily.

These are the words of R.Yishmael (Sotah 26), but R. Akiva says there
that if she was barren, she will be remembered and will conceive.
And R. Yishmael asked, then let all the barren women be suspected by
their husbands and in this way conceive children. R. Akiva offered no
reply to this question, and it appears to our master that they were both
following opinions that they maintained elsewhere, because one could
ask why, if the wife aroused her husband's suspicion, but did not defile
herself, she should be rewarded by conceiving a child. Did she not behave
immodestly by secluding herself with another man arousing contempt and
wrath aplenty. How is it that such a sinner would be rewarded? It appears
therefore that R. Akiva believes that only if the wife was unwittingly
secluded with another man against her will, would the Eternal reward
her by enabling her to give birth to sons and daughters. However, if
she secluded herself intentionally, which may not be done, the Eternal
would not reward her with children. Thus, according to R. Akiva, the
verse must be read "if she did not defile herself deliberately and she is
untainted by the prohibition of seclusion, because she secluded herself
unintentionally, then she will be unharmed by the bitter waters and the
Eternal will open up her womb so that she may give birth." However, if
she is not untainted by the prohibition of seclusion, even though she
did not defile herself, the Eternal will not reward her with offspring.

However, R. Yishmael believes that the seclusion alone was not sinful
if she knows in her soul that she would not allow another man to touch
her indecently. And R. Yishmael also conducted himself accordingly,
because the Sages taught in the text of the Mishnah that one may not
read on the Sabbath by the light of an oil-burning lamp, because one
might forget while reading and tilt the lamp to increase its light.
But R. Yishmael said, I will read and I will not tilt the lamp, because
he believes that if one knows in his soul that he will not commit
the transgression that one may rely on that knowledge. R. Yishmael
therefore interprets the word "u-t'horah hi" (she is untainted) just
as Rashi did, to mean that she is untainted by any other incident. R.
Yishmael therefore responded appropriately to R. Akiva by asking why,
if a barren woman would be rewarded by conceiving, would not all barren
women seclude themselves in order to arouse the suspicion of their
husbands in order to be able to give birth. R. Akiva, however, believes
that one may not rely on one's own knowledge that one will not commit a
transgression in a situation in which there is an increased likelihood
of committing a transgression. And see what happened to R. Yishmael who
said I will read and I will not tilt the lamp. For he read and did tilt
the lamp. There is therefore no reason to ask, let all the barren women
seclude themselves in order to arouse the suspicion of their husbands in
order that they might later be rewarded by being enabled to conceive,
because if a woman deliberately secludes herself, then she cannot be
considered untainted by the prohibition of being secluded with another
man. And Rashi explains the entire verse according to the opinion of
R. Yishmael, but according to what has been said, this is not correct
for the opinion of R. Akiva is authoritative.

David Glasner

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Date: Thu, 31 May 2001 18:39:47 -0500
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
RE: RYGB's principle

At 03:09 PM 5/31/01 -0400, Shinnar, Meir wrote:

>As the said poster, I am surprised at the misunderstanding of my post, as I
>never argued that I fully understood the CI shitta, nor that the CI ruling
>is not applicable because the socio econo historical circumstances have
>changed ( although some of us never accepted it).
>I argued that my understanding of the CI shitta implied a general approach
>to a  problem - the  employment of women outside their home and community.
>Rather than being a socio economic analysis, it was an axiological analysis
>of the value of zniut (broadly defined) in today's society.

Hmmm... Although I consider myself not bad at VIDC, this is one chilluk I 
do not get.

Maybe it is because I do not know what "axiological" means. Neither does 
Eudora. It suggests "audiological" as a substitute.

[Axiology is the field of philosophy having to do with value systems.
Students of RYBS pick up the word eventually. -mi]

>However, today, that approach seems restricted only to a particular facet -
>sherut leumi, without the more general application of that approach to other
>facets.    I therefore  wondered about the justification for such
>limitation.  Somehow, that seems a very different position than ascribed by
>RYGB to me.

Still don't see it.

>1) Psak of the sanhedrin, which hilchot mamrim deals with.  There the issue
>is specific to the power of the sanhedrin, and extending it to questioning
>every gadol would seem to require some proof.

It only requires proof if one sees it as a binding principle. I see it as 
logical extension.

>2) A psak which one has asked a posek.  There, the actual reasons may be
>       That seems directly related to the notion of asking a psak, rather
>than the general validity of the psak for others.

That seems far more irrational or super-rational than my position.

>3) Halachic discussions.  It would seem that RYGB would radically limit
>discussions in ways heretofore unknown....
>         The question I raised was not the practical psak, but the rationale
>behind it.  Given the requirements of showing proper respect, one might
>express questions even of gdolim.  When I learn (and I suspect that others
>here are also guilty) I am used to questioning rashi, rambam, and yes, even
>the CI..

Go right ahead.

>4) Even with regard to actual psak halacha, RYGB's position seems (IMHO)
>radical.  I think that the best counterproof is the discussion surrounding
>the Rambam's Mishne Torah, where he deliberately did not include his sevara.
>While we may try to reconstruct his sevara, we can never be sure that we are
>correct.  However, that does not mean that we are bound by it (although we
>clearly respect it).

Fail to see the counterproof.

>Some of RYGB's statements seem to suggest a difference between psak given ex
>cathedra and a  sevara  which is fuzzy, but I confess I don't understand the
>distinction - if we are bound to respect the explicit sevara when we don't
>understand it, why shouldn't we respect the sevara when it is only

No psak (post-Sanhedrin) is ever given ex cathedra. There is no such thing.

>5) Lastly, the very notion of a "star system" that is beyond argument to
>mere mortals is something that seems inherently against the notion eyn
>ladayan ela ma sheeynav ro'ot....
>              While we must give deference to the ba'ale hamesora, that
>doesn't eliminate our rights of inquiry.

Which is all, of course, why I would never have advocated the position that 
Dr. Shinnar ascribes to me.

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Date: Thu, 31 May 2001 20:17:53 -0500 (CDT)
From: "Shoshanah M. & Yosef G. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
RE: RYGB's principle

On Thu, 31 May 2001, Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer wrote:

> [Axiology is the field of philosophy having to do with value systems. 
> Students of RYBS pick up the word eventually. -mi]

Thank you.

I fail to see the difference, then, in kind, between positivist-historical
analysis and axiological analysis.


Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer
ygb@aishdas.org, http://www.aishdas.org/rygb

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Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 10:25:41 +0200
From: Eli Turkel <Eli.Turkel@kvab.be>

> But to say the Posek is not an authority?!

Sorry, I didnt mean that CI was not an authority.
I meant that his psak in any context is not binding on all of Israel
except for those who choose to view him as their posek.

>> RYGB seems to be saying that the fuzzier the grounds for the psak
>> the more it holds? If CI gives a reason that most poskim find
>> reasonable than one can argue however, if it sounds strange than
>> one cannot argue with it?

> I think this is exactly the point-like the famous story of R' X who sent
> a shailah to R' Y but told him not to tell him the reasons for his psak
> since he might find fault. This type of psak is more sod hashem lyereav
> or from the posek's "lev shel torah" and thus not easily subject to
> rational debate.

There is a famous such story that Rav Chaim Brisk send such a request to
Rav Yitzchok Elchanan. However, there it was clear that on the contrary he
did not want reasoning because he would then argue with the reasoning. Rav
Chaim was big enough to pasken for himself. He obviously did not want
to do so in this case.

In any case he voluntered which is much different than a gadol giving
a psak without being requested.

Eli Turkel

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Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 08:43:15 -0400
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: CI

On Wed, May 30, 2001 at 04:26:06PM -0500, RYGB wrote:
: This is not to imply that the CI's psak is *binding* because it is fuzzy, 
: rather that its very fuzziness - emanating, as it does, from an authority 
: of the CI's stature, makes it harder to challenge. A la the difference 
: between a takkanah and a drosho.

This is quite a stretch. First, we're extrapolating from beis din to
a poseik. Then, you're comparing a pesak that we don't understand to
a takanah. However, even if we understand the reason for a takanah,
the Rambam's rule applies. (Except if the takanah is made so as to be
conditional on its reason.) The difference between derashah and takanah
is /not/ based on our ability to follow its sevarah.

I also wonder about the problem of undocumented reasons. Even when we
understand a pesak of Chazal, the Gra (and, as noted here in the past,
followed lima'aseh by RAY Kook) warns us that it is likely that we only
know one reason amongst many. And therefore such reverse-engineering
can be cause for going lechumrah, but not lekulah.

Why not the same for a pesak printed in a 20th century shu"t?

Is that another place where the notion of being in a different era
comes in?

On Thu, May 31, 2001 at 03:19:35PM +0200, Eli Turkel wrote:
: Given a psak then any other posek can argue with the psak.
: Does RYSB insist that no one can use an indirect metal to hold up schach
: because CI prohibited maamid de-maamid even though most poskim disagree?

We're talking about a pesak that was accepted, or at least accepted by
this individual's kehillah. Now we're asking about overturning it. Yours
is an example of choosing between equally viable piskei halachah; or
of being lifnim mishuras hadin on the communal level to follow a less
viable pesak. Not overturning.

The parallel question would have been to explore the right of a later
posek to matir using metal to hold up sechach in a kehillah that follows
the CI.

: At this point I am completely lost. Do we paskin like Rambam because he
: was the greatest posek?
: Who makes these decisions?

To be more specific than RYGB was in his answer to this -- a particular
subset of B'nei Yisrael. Those who follow the halachic process, the
halachos about how halachos are made (including how they themselves
are modified).

In the past I had borrowed RYBS's terminology, and called this subset
Adas Yisrael. RYGB prefers different terms.

I phrase it this way because discussions on Usenet have made me aware
of Solomon Schechter's notion of Catholic Israel. This is his term
for the community of observant Jews. (The contrast between "Orthodox"
and "Catholic" in light of how those terms are used in Christianity is
interesting. Perhaps Freudian.)

In SS's notion, halachah is decided by consensus, and the population
considered for that consensus is determined by who follows halachah.
It's cyclic. Some R Jew could decide that "halachah" includes his
observance, and sure enough the consensus of the Jews who follow this
new definition agrees.

The way out of this cycle, I eventually realized, is to note that there's
a constitutional law -- a set of halachos about how to make halachos. (C
has no clearly defined set of such rules for SS to use.)

This limits the realm of consensus: it gives you a way to choose between
eilu va'eilu, but not to choose a decision that is wrong, outside the
system. Which means that the population too has a defined limit -- only
those who follow any of the divrei E-lokim Chaim allowed by the process
in his place and time.

Which is why I started by saying that the power of a pesak is the
consensus of those who follow the halachic process and who accepted
that pesak.

: I strongly disagree. There is no such thing as an authority who is
: not your rebbe or rav. No rabbi can pasken for other communities.

But no competant rav of that other community ought ignore the opinion
of a CI. So, while not binding (and thus not an authority in the
sense RET seems to be using the word) that pesak does have influence
(which is what RYGB is apparantly talking about).

: I agree with Daniel that psak in the absence of a Sanhedrin is based on
: the power of persuasion. The only exception to this rule is the psak of
: a rav for his talmidim.

Accepting a rabbi as one's rav itself requires being persuaded.

: Daniel brings down the Divrei Chaim on the other hand asserts that
: gedolim have ruach hakodesh.

However, since gedulah is a relative term, this only means that one is
comparing quantity of intellect and of ru'ach hakodesh when considering
someone else's pesak, rather than intellect alone. The dynamic is the
same, though.


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: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 12:53:52 +0300
From: "S. Goldstein" <goldstin@netvision.net.il>
Torah vs rape

The Torah certainly agrees with the questioners that rape is a heinous
crime. the question asked is what is the difference between rape and
kiddushei ktana, yibum and yiud.

First, unlike modern Western thought, a minor is treated as a second-class
citizen. Until adulthood, both rights and responsibilities are extremely
limited. A katan is not required by the Torah to perform mitzvos, he
may sin and escape punishment, he may cause financial damage and need
not pay, he may not engage in any business, he may not marry or divorce,
his vows are meaningless, etc.

Therefore, it is not such a surprise that a ktana cannot express an
opinion for or against a marriage.

Another idea foreign to current Western thought is the primacy of the
parents in the lives of the children. Yet, she can still get married
through the offices of her father. The father has the right to marry off
his daughter or to sell her into the slavery of amah ivriah. The Rambam
and Chinuch describe the laws of slavery as a tremendous benefit to the
poor. Clearly a father exercising these rights is not being physically
forced into anything.

Yibum is a third concept completely foreign to Western thought. Here the
Torah established a levirate marriage as a contingency plan in a regular
marriage. The regular (first) marriage is established based on the
free-will of the partners. The Gemara learns that if the prospective
partners seem incompatible, yibum is discouraged. So even though yibum
potentially can exist against the will of the wife, this is not a standard
situation. The Gemara discusses at length the possibility of the first
marriage being dissolved by a get to prevent a yibum situation. Also,
pertinent is the shita of Abba Shaul that if the levirate marriage is
being conducted because the parties are interested in their own physical
attraction it is strictly prohibitted.

In conclusion, all of these arrangements, even though they are foreign
to modern thought, are far from being rape.

Shlomo Goldstein

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Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 03:59:05 -0700 (PDT)
From: Harry Maryles <hmaryles@yahoo.com>
Re: How does Derachecha Darcei Noam apply here?

--- SBA <sba@blaze.net.au> wrote:
> Only this bothers you? What about the fact that a father can sell
> his 6-7 year old daughter as an Omo Ivriyo?

Yes, but selling a young girl into slavery which does not entail Yiud is
nothing more than a master buying the "working rights" of a little girl
until she is twelve. There is no abuse here. This is a far cry from Yiud.

> We obviously do not fully understand the lifestyle of 2-3000 years ago. 

No, we don't but any way you slice it, it still sounds extreme and cruel
to be able to force a lifetime marriage on a little girl against her will.

> (Better explanations welcome.)


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Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 09:42:18 +0200
From: Eli Turkel <Eli.Turkel@kvab.be>
book on Rav Soloveitchik

I would like to announce the publication of my book "Mekorot HaRav"
which is an index ordered by subject and location in Shas/Rambam to the
works of Rav Soloveitchik and his students.

The book is available from Reuven Mass in Israel for 60NIS
(45 NIS for shavua hasefer)

Eli Turkel

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Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 07:33:43 -0700 (PDT)
From: Harry Maryles <hmaryles@yahoo.com>
Re: Torah vs rape

--- "S. Goldstein" <goldstin@netvision.net.il> wrote:
> The Torah certainly agrees with the questioners that rape is a heinous
> crime.  the question asked is what is the difference between rape and
> kiddushei ktana, yibum and yiud.

> First, unlike modern Western thought, a minor is treated as a second-class
> citizen.  Until adulthood, both rights and responsibilities are extremely
> limited.  A katan is not required by the Torah to perform mitzvos, he may
> sin and escape punishment, he may cause financial damage and need not pay,
> he may not engage in any business, he may not marry or divorce, his vows are
> meaningless, etc.

> Therefore, it is not such a surprise that a ktana cannot express an opinion
> for or against a marriage.

There is a major difference between a Katan/Ketana being absolved of
responsibility of his/her actions, and being forced into a marraige
with someone she might abhor, for the rest of her life (at the whim of
her master in the case of Yiud and her husband in the case of Kedushei
Ketana). She has no recourse. This goes far beyond a question of limiting
the rights of a minor which the Torah mandates she receive in full at
adulthood automatically. The act of Kedushei Ketana strips her forever
of any rights in this rather substantive matter. This may not be rape
(then again it depends how you define rape) but it is cerainly cruel.

While it is true that in some cases it may be beneficial to one's daughter
to force her into marraige while she is a minor, I would think that there
should be at least some degree of willingness on the part of the little
girl. There are, unfortunately, all too many people in this world who
are interested in only themselves and are willing to harm even their
own children in a self serving enterprize.( Remeber the fellow who did
Kedushei Ketana on his daughter without revealing who the Chasan was so
as to gain leverage on his wife in a divorce procceding? He was roundly
condemned for doing so but I don't remember anyone disputing his right
to do it.) In the case of Yiud there is at least some opinions amongst
the Rishonim that consent is required of the minor. But in the case of
Kedushei Ketana, no such consent is required and there doesn't seem to
be any dispute about it amongst the Rishonim, to the best of my knowledge.

No one is questioning the Infinite wisdom of the Torah. All I am doing
is trying to find an understanding of it.


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Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 07:59:28 -0700 (PDT)
From: Harry Maryles <hmaryles@yahoo.com>
Re: consequences of sinning

[From Areivim. -mi]

--- Carl and Adina Sherer <sherer@actcom.co.il> wrote:
> Ain hachi nami. I think the issue is the attribution of a particular 
> disaster to a particular aveira. 

> With respect to the one in question, I understand that Rav Lau 
> made a statement last night that Judaism doesn't think that way - 
> i.e. AIUI he objected to the attribution of the specific aveira ...
> to that specific incident.

And that's as it should be. In the case of the dancers at the wedding,
most if not all of them were Tinokos Shenishbu and even if they weren't,
there is no such thing as immediate punishment for a sin... as that
would imply the re-establishment of Divine rule through Midas HaDin
instead of Midas HaRachamim. Before G-d punishes anyone he first gives
them an opportunity for Teshuva. Surely the suddeness of the building
collapse left no room for Teshuva for this act of dancing mixed. So
any punishment here that may have been meted out by HaShem Yisborach
was for past sins... not for the mixed dancing. Besides, since when is
mixed dancing a capital crime?


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Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 10:58:16 -0400
From: gil.student@citicorp.com
Re: Torah vs rape

> and being forced into a marraige with someone she might abhor, for the rest of
> her life (at the whim of her master in the case of Yiud and her husband in the
> case of Kedushei Ketana). 

In both cases it is the choice of her father.

See the Rambam in Hilchos Teshuvah 6:2 that young children are like their 
parents' property.

It is a different view of children than what we are used to.

Gil Student

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Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 12:14:23 -0400
From: "Feldman, Mark" <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
RE: mixed dancing (reward and punishment)

> From: David Glasner [mailto:DGLASNER@ftc.gov]
>> See the Dor Revi'i on v'havata l'rei'akha kamokha
>> However, when the Gentile came to Hillel, Hillel explained to him that
>> while a private individual is neither punished nor rewarded for his deeds in
>> this world, there is a reward here on earth for the actions of the entire
>> nation...

BTW a similar distinction between the individual and the klal is also used
by Dr. David Berger (and IIRC by R. Aryeh Carmell in his footnotes to vol 5
of Michtav MeEliyahu) to explain apparent stiros within the Ramban as to
whether Hashem runs the world b'derech ha'teva: Individuals (unless they are
great tzadikim) are mostly subject to teva while the klal, if it keeps the
mitzvos or chas v'shalom if it abandons the mitzvos, is subject to the
direct intervention of Hashem.

Kol tuv,

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Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 12:57:50 -0400
From: "Feldman, Mark" <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
RE: mixed dancing

From: Stein, Aryeh E. [mailto:aes@ll-f.com]
> I think R' Levy would have been better off by saying that the wedding hall
> collapse was punishment for the Jewish people's lapses in tznius - not the
> lapses of the people at the wedding, but perhaps the sins of the Jewish
> community...

The Holocaust happened to klal yisrael and therefore it is possible to say
that it is part of the scheme of reward and punishment for the klal (though
hester panim may play a role).  Is the death of 23 people and the injury of
a couple hundred definitely viewed as an event which occurred to klal
yisrael (as opposed to those specific individuals)?

Kol tuv,

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Date: Thu, 31 May 2001 13:16:20 -0400
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: mixed dancing

On Thu, May 31, 2001 at 01:06:09PM -0400, Gil Student wrote to Areivim:
: However, there can be no denying that Chazal did try to understand why 
: disasters happened.  Just think about all of the discussion over why the 
: Churban happened (they did not say the berachah before learning, Kamtza and 
: Bar Kamtza,...)....

Two differences:

1- Centuries later, they discussed it. There is a difference between
taking a lesson from a tragedy, and talking about the possible cheit to
Iyov himself. For that matter, there is a difference between Iyov doing
a cheshbon hanefesh and Elifaz saying "yennem doesn't keep tzeni'us".

2- Chazal weren't happy with any of the answers. Which is why so
many made it into Sha"s. R' Jack Love (a local adam gadol) makes a
similar point about the struggle Chazal had with the deaths of Nadav
and Avihu. They explored various chata'im, but finding a cheit doesn't
answer the problems of theodicy. And so none could really satisfy. They
weren't answering the question, they were grappling with it.

On Thu, May 31, 2001 at 02:31:11PM -0400, Gil Student wrote to Areivim:
: A rebuke is meant to teach about the transience of life.  It is also meant 
: to teach about metzius Hashem and sechar ve'onesh.  Hence the emphasis in 
: Chazal about finding a midah kenegged midah in onshim.

I spelled out my position already on Avodah. See
<http://www.aishdas.org/asp/fourSons.html> for a slightly more polished

In short: I take "sechar mitzvos behai alma leika" (and its reverse)
quite literally. Yissurim aren't given qua oneshim, although they might
also serve as such. They're calls to break you out of complacency. (See
there for a discussion of y' shel ahavah and nisyonos as well.) Which
is why "gam zu litovah".

On Thu, May 31, 2001 at 06:12:13PM -0400, Feldman, Mark wrote to Areivim:
: He told us in the Torah that we--presumably non-believers too--would suffer
: if we violated his Torah.  He did not say that the suffering would be a
: message to us to repent.  The discussion at hand is dealing with when Hashem
: punishes us in order to teach us a lesson.

Actually, HKBH doesn't mention the subject of personal suffering (in
ways other than tzora'as) at all. Communal suffering, yes -- there are
the tochachos, the 2nd paragraph in Shema, etc... Reward and punishment
in olam haba, also -- in the same part of Shema.

But Chazal, do tell us:
    sechar mitzvos behai alma leika (and presumably oneshim also)
    gam zu litova
    kol man di'avad Rachmana, litav avad

Second, one needs to not merely explain the event, but explain the
event's impact on each individual that it effected. From those who
died all the way down to someone who lives in NJ who was saddened by
the news, to some nachri for whom it was merely a distraction that
hid some other story from his attention. After all, HKBH weaves
each of those people's lives.

Perhaps one can say that the communal aspect of what happened in
Talpiot, the shared suffering of the nation, was intended as an onesh.
But explaining the communal aspect doesn't help explain the individual's
suffering. Often such national oneshim don't devolve on the particular
chote'im. There is a reason why Elifaz doesn't just point Iyov to
parashas Bechukosai.

To take it one step further... We are trying to 2nd-guess the Ribbono
shel Olam. Obviously we're going to fail. We can only use models,
simplified approximations, of how He runs the world. Any explanation
even on the level of how it touched one particular individual can't be
taken as more than that.


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: Fri, 1 Jun 2001 15:48:45 -0400
From: "Stein, Aryeh E." <aes@ll-f.com>
Re: Showering on Yom Tov

> I'm planning to give a shiur on Shavuos night on the topic of showering on
> YT....                                                 I also heard a shiur
> from RHS when I was in his shiur in which he implied (but did not say
> outright) that it should be muttar.

While this response is too late for your Shavuos shiur, I remember
listening to R' Frand's tape on this issue (Tape # 374 - "Bathing on
Shabbos and Yom Tov"). IIRC, R' Frand (similar to RHS) said that it
should be muttar, but he refrained from paskening/saying so outright.
I believe R' Frand held that, nowadays, it was undoubtedly shoveh l'chol
nefesh to shower daily.

KT and Gut Shabbos

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Date: Sun, 3 Jun 2001 03:58:34 +0400
From: "Carl and Adina Sherer" <sherer@actcom.co.il>
RE: mixed dancing (reward and punishment)

On 1 Jun 01, at 12:14, Feldman, Mark wrote:
>                                       It was to the nation as a whole that
> the Torah was addressing when it said (Leviticus 26:3): "If you will walk in
> my statutes and observe my commandments and do them." and (Leviticus 26:15)
> "and if you will spurn my statutes and your soul abhors my ordinances, so
> that you will not do all my commandments, but break my covenant." But if one
> man from the entire nation sins, every evil will not befall him and only at
> the end will G-d bring him to judgment for all his actions.

And if R"L MY child is sick, how is that a punishment to the Klal? 

-- Carl


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