Avodah Mailing List

Volume 09 : Number 037

Wednesday, May 22 2002

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 15:30:26 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: al menas leqabeil peras


On Wed, May 22, 2002 at 11:42:51PM +1000, SBA wrote:
: I would have thought that saying tehillim is similar to davvening -
: where we also ask for many things.
: Do you consider tefilah - al menas lekabel pras?

If you daven in order to get those things, yes.

If you daven in order to ask Hashem for them, no.

Tefillah is about hisqashrus, not about getting things. Not even *about*
getting the ge'ulah. It's about asking for them, because by turning to
Him we get closer to Him. But one should consider tefillah a success if
it brought you closer -- regardless of whether you get or don't get the
things you asked for.

Yes, the difference is subtle. But we shouldn't be promoting the wrong
side of it.

Similarly, one says tehillim not in order to get a yeshu'ah, but in
order to turn to Hashem be'eis tzarah, to have a relationship with
HQBH such that you turn to Him to share your need.

And all this is not lefi RCV. In Nefesh haChaim, he says that the ideal
kavanah is that these things come for His sake. This self-interest
issue is one of the reasons he raises.

-mi


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 12:06:18 -0400
From: "Gil Student" <gil_student@hotmail.com>
Subject:
Various Aspects of Torah Learning


Various Aspects of Torah Learning
By Rabbi Hershel Schachter

http://www.torahweb.org/torah/special/2002/rsch_learning.html

Many have the mistaken notion that the mitzvah of Torah study applies
only to students of school age. The Rambam writes explicitly (Hil Chos
Talmud Torah, 1:8) that this mitzvah applies to people of all ages,
single or married, and even to one who is very old and feeble...

Many who have studied in Yeshivot in their youth are so trained in
learning Talmud in depth with all the supercommentaries, that after
leaving the Yeshiva they think that to study Gemorah without Rav Chaim
or Rav Shimon is of no value. This is not correct...

As elementary as it may seem, it must be stated that even study of the
twenty four books of the Tanach still constitute a fulfillment of the
mitzvah of Talmud Torah...

Many feel that to study "pesak halacha" constitutes a "pegimah" in ones
learning Torah lshma. Nothing can be farther from the truth...

Many only feel successful in learning when they are able to be
"mechadesh"...


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 07:37:03 -0400
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Subject:
Re: Posai'ach es yodecho u'masbi'a l'chol chai ratzon


At 01:35 AM 5/22/02 +0000, Micha Berger wrote:
>: Then the objection is "L'Kol".

>It's not "kol ratzon", it's "kol chai".

>Remember, we can't give this pasuq a peshat in which Hashem is being praised
>for something He doesn't actually do. HQBH believes that we shouldn't have
>every need or desire satisfied.

>In fact, this need to have needs is what RAYK's peshat is all about.

Let me get this straight then: We praise Hashem for giving us full measures 
of desire for material nourishment?!

YGB


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 07:21:19 -0700 (PDT)
From: "Julian Ungar M.D." <ungarsargon@yahoo.com>
Subject:
ratzon


i suggest reading ratzon as "desire" for what we desire(!) most in life
is that very desire for life.

In Izhbitz (Kotz-Lublin chassidut) and Reb Zadok, the notion of Ratzon
in Biblical hebrew is articulated as "t'shuka" this inner heart desire
for clarity (behirus) ....

"He who satisifes His living creatures with ratzon"

could thus mean the most precious gift possible, the gift of desire,
the desire to make sense of one's life and the world and the suffering
that comes along with it...

bederech efsher!

julian ungar


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 10:29:17 -0400
From: "Anonymous Chaveir" <chaveir@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Posai'ach es yodecho u'masbi'a l'chol chai ratzon


You should raise the issue in a pasuk chumash before getting to sefer
tehillim - 

Naftali seva ratzon  / u'maleh birchas Hashem  
yam v'darom yerasha.

Here the parallism (to the second half of the pasuk) clearly supports the
reading that the ratzon refers to G-d's blessing.  

Ramban reads it as such.
Rashi says it refers to fufillment of man's desires.


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 10:02:56 -0400
From: Arie Folger <afolger@ymail.yu.edu>
Subject:
Re: Posai'ach es yodecho u'masbi'a l'chol chai ratzon


RMB wrote:
> Poetry can be like that, but it makes life difficult.

Torah is not easy. I find anonymous chaveir's post most convincing as _the_ 
pshat (RYGB's lashon), even as all other pshatim were insightful lerav'hah 
demilta.

Arie Folger


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 18:42:09 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: Posai'ach es yodecho u'masbi'a l'chol chai ratzon


On Tue, May 21, 2002 at 09:24:51PM +0300, Shlomo Argamon wrote:
: While I've long been partial to the drash that what is being bequeathed
: to us is our very ratson (to pursue good), without which we'd be utterly
: lost, I think it's clearly a drash, not pshat. Pshat I'd say is that
: Hashem gives every creature what that creature wants....

And yet the opinion you're labeling derashah fits the diqduq, while the
one you consider peshat requires a missing semichut or possesive to make
it the "creature's want" ("kol chai [es] retzono") or "the want of the
creature" ("retzon kol chai").

Despite anonymous's beautiful parallel, the diqduq doesn't work as smoothly.

:                       That is, not only does G-d satisfy our desires,
: but He does so in such a way that it will be *both* what we want *and*
: what we need!

Velo hi!

Hashem doesn't give every living being what we want. He doesn't even give
every tzadiq.


On Wed, May 22, 2002 at 07:37:03AM -0400, Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer wrote:
: Let me get this straight then: We praise Hashem for giving us full measures 
: of desire for material nourishment?!

No.  I've discussed two shitos, so let me spell out each:

RSS: We are praising him for giving us desirability, by which we could get
our material nourishment.

RAYK: ... for giving us our fill of desires -- so that we can have goals
and meaning to work toward in our lives.

The one who says that it's thanks for giving us desires (RAYK) does
not take this to be about material nourishment. And the one who does
understand it to be about material nourishment (RSS) takes "ratzon" to
be desirability (for which RSS finds other examples); not our own desires.

-mi

-- 
Micha Berger                 A cheerful disposition is an inestimable treasure.
micha@aishdas.org            It preserves health, promotes convalescence,
http://www.aishdas.org       and helps us cope with adversity.
Fax: (413) 403-9905                - R' SR Hirsch, "From the Wisdom of Mishlei"


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 15:39:29 EDT
From: Yzkd@aol.com
Subject:
Re: Posai'ach es yodecho u'masbi'a l'chol chai ratzon


Just in case it wasn't mentioned, the Rokeach Teitches it that HKB"H is Zan 
Chol Chai Birtzono.

Kol Tuv, 
Yitzchok Zirkind


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 19:44:22 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: a z'man matan Torosainu thought


On Wed, May 22, 2002 at 01:29:01AM +0300, Carl and Adina Sherer wrote:
:> The seifer Oneg Y"T understands the pasuq "mei'erev ad erev tisperu
:> chamishim yom" 

: Where is this pasuk? The only "mei'erev ad erev" I recall is in the 
: context of the 9th and 10th of Tishrei. 

Perhaps it was the influence of the "when does a day start" discussion.

I totally misremembered Vayiqra 23:16, "... ad mimacharas hashabbas
hashevi'is tisperu chamishim yom ..." Meaning that the 50 days are BEFORE
the macharas hashabbos hashvi'is.

I guess you could argue "ad ve'ad bichlal" and reject this. It would
be an odd lashon; you would have to explain why the more common structure
yeilding "ubayom hachamishis" wasn't used instead.

-mi

-- 
Micha Berger                 A cheerful disposition is an inestimable treasure.
micha@aishdas.org            It preserves health, promotes convalescence,
http://www.aishdas.org       and helps us cope with adversity.
Fax: (413) 403-9905                - R' SR Hirsch, "From the Wisdom of Mishlei"


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Date: Thu, 16 May 2002 12:56:43 -0400
From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@juno.com>
Subject:
Re: Leftovers from Shavuos


On Wed, 22 May 2002 01:29:04 +0300 "Carl Sherer" <sherer@actcom.co.il> writes:
> How (if at all) does that differ from the literal interpretation of 
> the Rema?

The Rema IIRC gives the reason of shetei halechem, which means a dairy
seudah and a meat seudah, not a meat snack.

Gershon
gershon.dubin@juno.com


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 07:44:24 +0300
From: "Carl and Adina Sherer" <sherer@actcom.co.il>
Subject:
Re: Leftovers from Shavuos


On 16 May 2002 at 12:56, Gershon Dubin wrote:
>> How (if at all) does that differ from the literal interpretation of 
>> the Rema?

> The Rema IIRC gives the reason of shetei halechem, which means a dairy
> seudah and a meat seudah, not a meat snack.

As far as I can tell, the only nafka mina would be that if it's a 
meat "snack" you would not eat bread/challah with it. Agreed?

-- Carl


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 18:10:45 +0300
From: "Carl M. Sherer" <cmsherer@ssgslaw.co.il>
Subject:
Re:Re: Leftovers from Shavuos


On 22 May 2002 at 13:35, Gershon Dubin wrote:
> Agreed.  Which saves you washing, bentching, making sure you have
> lechem mishneh (is that true for the third Y"T meal?), not to mention
> the calories and appetite (not necessarily in that order).

Third Yom Tov meal? 

-- Carl


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 13:35:10 GMT
From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@juno.com>
Subject:
Re:Re: Leftovers from Shavuos


"Carl and Adina Sherer" <sherer@actcom.co.il> writes:

: As far as I can tell, the only nafka mina would be that if it's a 
: meat "snack" you would not eat bread/challah with it. Agreed?

Agreed. Which saves you washing, bentching, making sure you have
lechem mishneh (is that true for the third Y"T meal?), not to mention
the calories and appetite (not necessarily in that order).

Gershon
gershon.dubin@juno.com


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 15:31:09 GMT
From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@juno.com>
Subject:
Re:Re:Re: Leftovers from Shavuos


"Carl M. Sherer" <cmsherer@ssgslaw.co.il> writes:
: Third Yom Tov meal? 

One at night, one dairy and one meat during the day (if you don't snack)

Gershon
gershon.dubin@juno.com


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 19:46:48 +0300
From: "Carl M. Sherer" <cmsherer@ssgslaw.co.il>
Subject:
Re:Re:Re: Leftovers from Shavuos


On 22 May 2002 at 15:31, Gershon Dubin wrote:
>: Third Yom Tov meal? 

> One at night, one dairy and one meat during the day (if you don't
> snack)

According to the Rema, the one dairy and one meat during the day are 
actually one meal.

-- Carl

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


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Date: Tue, 21 May 2002 23:39:33 -0400
From: Arie Folger <afolger@ymail.yu.edu>
Subject:
Re: Waiting to daven maariv on Shavuos


RAM asked about the source for a shavu'ot min haTorah, considering that
sefirah is miderabanan.

A wild thought, for which I elicit your comments: The Torah uses the same
language for counting 50 days and for counting 50 years (up to Yovel),
yet, the first is an individual mitzvah, while the second is a mitzvah
on beit din. Why?

Disclaimer: I did not (sufficiently?) learn the relevant sugyot, and
some major, obvious mekorot may escape me.

In both cases, the Torah commands us mainly when Shavu'ot and Shmittah
come out. In fact, WRT Shmittah, Rashi makes a comment that no matter what
[e.g., when beit din forgot to count one year], Shmittah comes out on its
appointed year. Should be same for Shavu'ot (e.g. if everybody forgot to
count a certain day). Where does the counting come in? Well, the Torah
explains that, in order to figure out when Shmittah and Shavu'ot come out,
``us'' should count. Thus, as a corrolary to the mitzvah of the year/day,
there is an obligation to somehow count. 'Hazal (I use the term loosely,
think of "this is the 'hidush of TSBP") decreed that the way to fulfil
the mitzvah of counting for Shmittah is via beit din, while they also
decreed that the mitzvah of counting for Shavu'ot should be performed
individually.

Reality check: why is counting nowadays derabbanan? Well, first of all,
this is not the unanimous view.

Anyway, counting is tied to the full observance of Shavu'ot, including
the qorban, unlike other holidays where the korban plays a less important
part of the holiday.

I base this on the fact that in parshat Emor all other calendar
observances have an emphasis on it being a 'hag or miqra qodesh (heheh,
the q is appearing ;-)), even Pessa'h, as the passuk recoups after the
description of bringing the qorban with uva'hamishah 'assar yom la'hodesh
hazeh, 'hag... OTOH, WRT Shavu'ot, the passuk clearly first and foremost
connects the timing (50 days) with the min'hat bikurim. Only towards
the end of the description of Shavuot do we see uqeratem be'etzem hayom
hazeh miqra qodesh ...

Thus, the counting is mostly important for bringing the qorban, while
all other observances are incidentary; nowadays there is no qorban,
thus counting is derabbanan, while the incidentary holiday is still there.

Well, but why would counting of Shmittah and of Shavu'ot be different in
nature? Why would 'Hazal differentiate between them? Because Shmittah
counting happens rarely (once a year) and therefore has little impact
on the counters. OTOH, Shavu'ot counting happens every day, during the
period running up to zman matam Toratenu, so there is something to be
gained by personal counting. (preparation for Qabbalat haTorah)

Finally, is the requirement to count 50 days personally (and fulfil it in
this particular manner) of deOraita/HlMmS origin, or 'Hazal's perush? In
the latter case, how could sefirat haomer ever be deOraita?

Short answer: I don't know.

Long answer: we can conceive of both possibilities. Either all the details
of counting, both for Shmittin and for Shavu'ot is of Sinaitic origin,
or it is an interpretation by 'Hazal, and may have been a 'hiddush.

In the latter case, I would draw an analogy with one interpretation
in Rambam's approach to qiddushei kessef. Rambam states that QK is
midivrei sofrim, and the nosei kelim bend over backwards to explain
what Rambam means. One approach (sorry, forgot source) is that indeed
QK is derabban, however, only from the perspective of the nature of the
qinyan. However, just as in dinei mamonot a rabbinic qinyan can bring
about a biblically sanctioned ownership, so too, once 'Hazal enacted QK,
its effects became valid mideOraita.

So too, we may consider that it is 'Hazal who decided to enact the
requirement of individually counting 50 days. With this rabbinic
enactment, we fulfil the biblical commandment.

The same logic is applied in qiddush hayom on every Shabbat (and 'hag),
where there are different rabbinic requirements for qiddush (tfillat 7,
me'eyn 7, qiddush 'al hayayin) and each of them is indeed rabbinic, but
one of them is the fulfilment of the biblical obligation of qiddush hayom.

Comments?

Arie Folger
-- 
It is absurd to seek to give an account of the matter to a man 
who cannot himself give an account of anything; for insofar as
he is already like this, such a man is no better than a vegetable.
           -- Book IV of Aristotle's Metaphysics


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 15:26:13 EDT
From: Yzkd@aol.com
Subject:
Re: Kiddush


In a message dated 5/16/02 10:26:38 AM Eastern Daylight Time, 
gershon.dubin@juno.com writes:
> What is the source of a woman's chiyuv of kiddush hayom for Yom Tov?

While the Minchas Chinuch Mitzva 31 want's to connect this with the Machlokes 
end of O"C 296 WRT Havdalah The S"A Horav 271:5 makes no such distinction and 
invokes the rule WRT Kiddush of Shabbos that since they are Mchuov in the Loi 
Saseh they are Mchyov in the Asei.


Kol Tuv, 
Yitzchok Zirkind


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 15:27:52 EDT
From: Yzkd@aol.com
Subject:
Re: EIN SIMCHO ELEH BEBOSOR..


As already mentioned many times in addition to the famous Shagas Aryeh on 
this issue see the Tarkei Tshuvah Y"D 89 (19).

Kol Tuv, 
Yitzchok Zirkind


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 12:32:14 -0400
From: "Feldman, Mark" <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
Subject:
birth control


From: Carl M. Sherer [mailto:cmsherer@ssgslaw.co.il] on Areivim
> As far as I know, money is (generally) not a heter to use birth 
> control. 

Once a person has fulfilled pru urvu, shouldn't his ability (financially
and emotionally) to support a large family be relevant to whether he
may use (kosher forms of) birth control? I have gotten the impression
that some rabbanim use this as a factor in their decision to permit
birth control. Are there any tshuvos on the matter?

Kol tuv,
Moshe


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 14:40:24 EDT
From: Joelirich@aol.com
Subject:
z"l vs a"h


I was recently told by 2 Rabbis that z"l is traditionally used for men and 
a"h for women.  This seemed odd to me because in researching for a yahrtzeit 
shiur I came across the S"A Y"D 240:9 which discusses kavod after death and 
the Rama quotes the Maharil  24 "ain chiluk ben em lav bchol zeh"  .  The 
kitzur shulchan aruch(243:8)  specifically mentions zichrona lvracha.

Is this distinction the actual practice in most communities?  If so, does 
anyone know the source?

KT
Joel Rich


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 18:53:56 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: Wearing tzitzis outside one's clothes


Earlier, I said:
>: But we b'davka go and buy a four-cornered garment in order to be
>: m'kayem the mitzva...

> According to those rishonim, we don't! If you say that the single guy
> isn't yotzei, neither is the married one. Which means the minhag isn't
> about making opportunities for qiyum hamitzvah. It's about inventing
> an "ur'isem oso" of our own.

I realized something. This is exactly the kind of "ritual" that RYBS
says that yiddishkeit doesn't engage in. (If you recall, the discussion
also involved his rejecting a kiruv approach that used coming home to
a beautiful white tablecloth etc... as part of its discussion of the
beauty of Shabbos.)

Does anyone know whether he held that one is yotzei with a tallis qatan?
And if not, how this creation of non-halachic trapping is acceptible
to him?

On Mon, May 20, 2002 at 10:53:10AM +0000, D & E-H Bannett wrote:
: As has been mentioned a number of times in postings. The Ar"i said one
: should not wear them out because of yohora. All the Sefardic posekim
: follow this and state it clearly, e.g., the Hida, R' Hayyim David Halevi
: and R' Ovadia Yosef.

Let me ask a question parallel to one we discussed about tzeni'us.

Does yuhara answer to absolute or contemporary standard?

If the latter, then while it was wrong to be the first on your block
to wear tzitzis out, now that it's pretty common, what's the problem?

-mi

-- 
Micha Berger                 A cheerful disposition is an inestimable treasure.
micha@aishdas.org            It preserves health, promotes convalescence,
http://www.aishdas.org       and helps us cope with adversity.
Fax: (413) 403-9905                - R' SR Hirsch, "From the Wisdom of Mishlei"


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 15:05:10 -0400
From: "Feldman, Mark" <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
Subject:
RE: kilaei ba'alei 'hayim


From: Arie Folger [mailto:afolger@ymail.yu.edu]
> An Israeli researcher has created a naked chicken (meaning without feathers) 
> Is anyone on list familiar with how said researcher has created this useful 
> little monster?

See
http://www.haaretzdaily.com/hasen/pages/ShArt.jhtml?itemNo=167086&contrassID=1&subContrassID=5&sbSubContrassID=0&listSrc=Y
(this is in the "Breaking News" section, so the URL will be inoperable
soon; it will probably make it into Thursday's paper):

<<Cahaner crossbred normal chickens with birds already balding because
of a naturally occurring "naked neck" gene. The result is a somewhat
funny-looking, normal sized boiler chicken that carries the special
naked gene. >>

> Halakhikally, I wonder about the following:
> * is there a prohibition on kilaim for fowl? I only recall mamals
> (  everywere), trees (ditto) and plants (in Israel only).
> * assuming we figure out what method was used for creating them, does that
>   method qualify as kilaim, or not. 

I assume that there is no problem of kilayim here as the breeding was
done only with chickens, not other fowl.

Kol tuv,
Moshe


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 15:37:47 EDT
From: Yzkd@aol.com
Subject:
Re: kilaei ba'alei 'hayim


In a message dated 5/21/02 8:05:24 AM Eastern Daylight Time, 
afolger@ymail.yu.edu writes:
> Halakhikally, I wonder about the following:
> * is there a prohibition on kilaim for fowl? I only recall mamals
> (everywere), trees (ditto) and plants (in Israel only).

The Mishna B"K 54b includes fowl, and so it is brought Lhalacha Y"D 297:1

> * assuming we figure out what method was used for creating them, does that
> method qualify as kilaim, or not.

Without getting involved in what the Issur is the action or the result (even 
though there might not be Malkus), if the way it is done is by turning off a 
gene it should not be Kilayim.

WRT Kashrus of a featherless chicken see Y"D 59:2

> Good/hardy apetite?

Al T'a'am Voreiach Ein Lhisvakeiach :-)

Kol Tuv, 
Yitzchok Zirkind


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 16:07:38 -0400
From: "Feldman, Mark" <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
Subject:
RE: bitachon & nature


From: Mishpachat Freedenberg [mailto:free@actcom.co.il]
> Why should
> it not follow that even if every part of what happens to a person is
> according to Hashem's Divine Plan that Hashem would not use teva as his
> shaliach? Hashem has many shlichim - but He is still Top Management.

<snip>
> Mah Pitom?? Who on earth said that Hashem allowing nature to follow its
> "natural" course is not part of a Divine plan? IOW, how do you figure
> that a person who is injured in a terrorist attack did not merit Divine
> intervention? How do you think he got to the terror site in the first
> place? Why was he injured when the guy next to him didn't suffer a scratch
> and the guy behind him was killed? 

I was writing according Rambam's view of nature. Your perspective
reflects the view of Rabbeinu Yona and others, and is commonly accepted
in today's mussar seforim (perhaps even accepted by the entire charedi
community?) that all that happens (even to the smallest detail) is part
of the Divine plan.

For more on the two different views, see Rabbi Shalom Carmy's book on
Suffering
>http://www.aronson.com/jbookstore/cgi-bin/main/bdetail.cgi?d=3&b=741&c=J>.
Excerpt from the publisher's interview with Rabbi Carmy:

<<The inherent tension in a traditional perception of God's providence
can be approached by thinking about the mysterious nature of human
relationships. A master teacher may know, and be concerned with,
every student. It would not be much of an exaggeration to say that
nothing happens that she does not allow. Though she hews to a general
curriculum, she frequently tailors the contours of the class to the
special requirements of an individual student; but not always. Likewise,
in our most attentive, knowing, personal connections there are moments
of distance: there are times when we are left on our own because our
freedom is now paramount, and there are times when failure to intervene
indeed is a sign of aloofness and alienation. Sometimes the student,
or the intimate friend, has a good idea about the reason for the
distance. More often the situation is shrouded in varying degrees of
ambiguity. The one unclouded truth is the value of the relationship,
and the need to sustain and enhance it.

That God knows and is concerned with each one of us is a fundamental
Jewish teaching. That God, from moment to moment, manifests His concern by
intervening in the natural order is not. Some rare individuals are deemed
worthy of intimate, individual divine providence at each and every moment.
This essential tension is played out throughout Jewish thought, in Rambam
and Ramban, in R. Kook, R. Soloveitchik and R. Yosef Bloch. Prophets
and psalmists knew that God both reveals and conceals Himself. The
experience of God's aloofness and chastisement, terrifying as it may be,
the feeling of abandonment and despair-these are as much a part of the
religion of reality as our experience of His closeness and love. It is
the complex consciousness of both kinds of experience that distinguishes
confrontation with God from comforting but ultimately empty gestures. >>

Kol tuv,
Moshe


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Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 20:02:18 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: bitachon & nature


On Tue, May 21, 2002 at 03:16:25PM -0400, Feldman, Mark wrote:
: I don't think you have proof from the Ramban (though I did not see it
: inside). The Ramban and R. Bachya *al haTorah* (I think on the pasuk
: dealing with Avraham--"ki yi'dativ asher yitzeveh...") differentiate
: between hashgacha on regular people (most of the time subject to teva) and
: hashgacha on those who are on the level of "hinei ein Hashem el yirei'av."

Also discussed in the faxed Iggeres haQodesh.

I want to point out that many of us are dividing HP by frequency. Yerei'av
are subject to it more often, or in more situations.

It could also be in terms of blatancy. Which would rule out many
situations where only a neis nigleh could help, but isn't limited
to that. IOW, it's not a boolean thing, teva vs HP, and therefore the
only quantitative question is how often. It's also how much of each are
present in a given event. This is the implication of REED's bitachon +
hishtadlus formula, if bitachon's role is by causing HP.

Which is why I saw the possibility of being meyasheiv the Rambam's
statement about the set of people being fuzzy with REED's shitah. They
may disagree over whether teva is real or illusion, but the same dynamic
holds.

It's "just" that REED makes it conditional on bitachon, the Rambam
on da'as.

: So the sin of Yaakov would not necessarily be a sin for someone on a
: lesser madreigah. (IIRC, R. Bloch in Shiurei Daas takes this type of
: approach in dealing with Yosef's sin in trusting in the sar hamashkim.)

I would argue that "ein somechin al haneis" is partly definitional. The
greater bitachon, the fewer things are neis, therefore the more things
you can rely on. This was R' Chanina ben Dosa's gedulah. He saw yad
Hashem in oil burning to the point that vinager was no greater of a neis.

: I've gotten the impression that Rabbeinu Yonah in Shaarei Tshuvah does
: not take a Maimonidean approach towards nature.

And again, see the fax!

and then later that day, at 03:16:28PM -0400, RMF wrote:
:> As I argued here in the past, that too is an indirect hashgachah.
:> Onesh needn't be a slap in the face, it could be abandonment to the
:> forces one chooses to follow.

: Ain hachee namee. However, if a person who is not a kesil or rasha, but
: not a yode'a Hashem/yarei Hashem either, is subject to divine intervention
: 2% of the time and is otherwise left to nature because of his lack of
: perfection, the natural occurrence is not part of a Divine plan that is
: best for this person (in contrast to CI). IOW, if he becomes depressed
: after being hospitalized for injury in a terrorist attack (as we read
: about recently), that means that he did not merit divine intervention
: (and this is indirect hashgacha), but not that depression is the best
: thing for his soul k'lapei sh'maya.

As above: Why assume the either-or, when the Rambam tells us not to.
It's more vs less in each event.

I also have no idea where on this spectrum the Rambam puts most people
or would put the typical Avodah member. Perhaps 98% is a more realistic
example?

I don't know what to do with the depression issue, because it might be
a matter of bechirah. IOW, what he does, not what he got. But ignoring
that and just dealing with subsequent consequence of the injury in
general...

Perhaps what's best for him isn't the injury or the depression, but
the teva-ness that got him to that point. That the *risk* of injury was
"worth it" (sorry, discussing theodicy leads to emotionally repugnant
conclusions, which is why RYBS disourages it) in comparison to his
wrongly feeling that G-d is with him more than he's with G-d.

: Regarding "abandonment to the forces one chooses to follow:" I didn't
: get the impression from Rambam (or from the Ramban's cited in Dr.
: Berger's article) that a non yode'a Hashem/yarei Hashem who chooses
: to believe that everything is done according to a divine plan will
: automatically merit complete hashgacha....

This is a distinction I tried to make clear earlier in this post. (Since
I didn't have it clear before.) The Rambam says it's about yedi'ah,
REED says bitachon.

Oddly, this means that the Rambam (Moreh 3:51) speaks in terms of yedi'ah
being a mystical connection to the Source, while REED can describe things
in more rationalist terms.

:                         And it does make sense in the context of the
: proof text quoted by R. Bachya al HaTorah--"hinei ein Hashem el yirei'av"
: continues "l'miyachalim l'chasdo".)

: And if a person cannot be assured of *complete* hashgacha pratis, how
: can he choose to follow the path to believe that everything is divinely
: ordained and nothing results from nature?

You're using two definitions of nature simultaneously.

The Rambam considers teva to be a beryah, and that some people can
be subject to it instead of HP. In which case, more of one means less
of the other.

If you say that "everything is divinely ordained" then everything is HP,
and there is no "less of the other". However, one could have more or less
teva-ness, more or less compliance to the patterns that scientists study.
But still, he who isn't zocheh ends up living through events that fit
the description "teva". HP is absolute, teva is talui on the individual.

:>:             According to CI, there's no reason to be anxious
:>: whether you're going to be in the next terror attack--you either will
:>: or won't but it's not up to you (unless you purposely enter a place of
:>: sakanah--statistically, even Sbarro's isn't a makom sakanah).

:> I don't know if that's what the CI is saying. You're making his statement
:> about bitachon into one about HP. He could hold like the Rambam, and
:> yet define bitachon to include the confidence that if Hashem treats you
:> more beteva it is in your best interest.

: The way the CI expresses himself in Emunah u'Bitachon does not lead me to
: believe that he was Maimondian in his approach.  CI says that all specific
: good or bad *occurrences* (results) are part of Hashem's plan for the
: individual, rather than saying that the *process* of either being or not
: being treated b'teva is part of the Plan....

You're assuming the CI would use a different lashon for the event and
for the means of getting the event (process).

Or, to put it another way: between the event itself and the teva attribute
of the event.

A third description of basically the same idea: the event is min
haShamayim because the teva-ness of the event is.

The idea that domeim, tzomei'ach and chai are subject to HP is the shitah
of the mi'ut (until the Besht -- see the fax!). Which would seem to
imply that some beryah accounts for the teva that these events follow.
Even if the Rambam was unique in saying that this is a sliding scale
for humans and not universal.

You're assuming that the CI is choleiq with rov rishonim. Possible,
but not an assumption I feel comfortable making from a diyuq in lashon.

-mi

-- 
Micha Berger                 A cheerful disposition is an inestimable treasure.
micha@aishdas.org            It preserves health, promotes convalescence,
http://www.aishdas.org       and helps us cope with adversity.
Fax: (413) 403-9905                - R' SR Hirsch, "From the Wisdom of Mishlei"


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