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Volume 10 : Number 061

Tuesday, November 19 2002

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Mon, 18 Nov 2002 11:51:58 -0500
From: "Gil Student" <gil@aishdas.org>
Re: Astrology

Let me see if I understand the debate here. We all agree that Rambam
(among others) held that Chazal in general did not believe in astrology.
We all agree that Ramban (among others) held that Chazal in general
believed in astrology. The only question is whether Rambam was incorrect
in his analysis. Some say that he was incorrect and that Ramban was
correct in claiming that Chazal believed in astrology.

Do I understand this debate properly? Are we actually debating whether
Rambam was correct?

Personally, I would prefer not to go head-to-head with either Rambam
or Ramban.

Gil Student

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Date: Mon, 18 Nov 2002 19:07:45 +0200
From: "Daniel Eidensohn" <yadmoshe@012.net.il>
Re: Re: Astrology Mareh Mekomos

Regarding R' Saadiya Gaon's attitude to astrology. As noted in my
previous postingR' Kafih insists that he rejects it and that this is
the possible basis for Chovas HaLevavos rejecting astrology also. As
I pointed out the missing text that R' Kafih presents does not support
his assertions regarding Chovas HaLevavos. His assertions regarding R'
Saadiya Gaon are not convincing either.

The following seems to undermine his assertion.

1) RSG was the first to write a commentary on Sefer Yetzira. Prof A
Altman in his article on astrology in Encyclopedia Judaica takes this
as evidence that RSG was a believer in astrology. He also states that
in the medieval period nobody but the Rambam rejected astrology.

R' Aryeh Kaplan says the following in his writings on Sefer Yetzira.

" Further support linking Abraham to the Sefer Yetzirah is found in the
Talmudic teaching that "Abraham had a great astrology in his heart,
and all the kings of the east and west arose early at his door. Sfer
Yetzirah is one of the **primary ancient astrological texts**,and it is
possible that it incorporates Abraham's astrological teachings. The fact
that this astrology was said to be "in his heart" might also indicate
that it involved various meditative techniques, as was indeed the case
with ancient astrology and is also suggested by Sefer Yetzirah. There is
evidence that these mysteries were also taught to Abraham by Shem, along
with the mystery of the calendar. When G-d revealed himself to Abraham
one of the first tings that He taught him was not to be overdependent
on astrological predictions."

Nowhere in his commentary to Sefer Yetzira does RSG make a negative
statement about astrology - despite ample opportunity.

Regarding R' Kafih's assertion that the evidence for the rejection of
astrology is found in RSG's commentary on Iyuv. The following is taken
from the Yale Judaica Series translation of this commentary by Prof
L. Goodman [Chapter 39 p393]. Prof. I Twersky was one of the editors of
the series.

"Nature, in the case of animals is called their character or constitution.
Other things are said to have natures in the general sense, as the
natures and effects of the stars, of which He says, Dost thou bind the
sweet influences of the Pleiades? (Chapter 38:31). by this last He means
that among the stars there are those whose nature it is to warm and
those whose nature it is to cool. The cooling ones water the fruit and
make it succulent; that is why He refers to their sweet influence. The
warming ones ripen the fruit and sustain its growth; that is why He
refers to their drawstrings (38:31). But these actions of the stars
are not the most regarded. We tend to make much only of the claims of
astrologers about the effects determined by conjunctions, declinations,
oppositions, and the like. In reality these are suppositions with no
ground in evidence beyond the claim itself. The heating and cooling,
moistening and drying effects of the heavenly bodies by contrast are
undeniable - the warmth of the sun and coolness of the moon, for example
which are apprehended by the sense and evident to observation. "

He clearly is not rejecting the influence of the stars. I also
don't see this as a rejection of the validity of astrology. It
just seems to be saying that the reality of the heating
and cooling effects of the stars is directly ascertained by
the human senses while the science of astrology is based upon
conjecture which is tentatively accepted as is most of science. See
for article in Scientific American on the tentative nature of science.

In sum, the Rambam stands in sharp contrast to everyone else in his
unequivocal rejection of astrology - not just because it is prohibited
in the Torah, not just because G-d can change it, not because it isn't a
perfect science - but because it is utter nonsense. R' Kafih's assertions
regarding both Chovas HaLevavos and RSG seem to be more wishful thinking
that valid readings.

                                        Daniel Eidensohn

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Date: Mon, 18 Nov 2002 15:09:27 -0500
From: "David Riceman" <driceman@worldnet.att.net>
Re: Astrology

>>> See Ramban Shichchath HaAsin al Sefer haMitvoth #8 (Tamim Tihyeh ...).
>>> Admittedely it has to be understood in the context of the Ramban's
>>> denial of the existence of physical law, but it can certainly be taken
>>> as a rejection of astrology.

>> Ramban (Toras HaShem Temima): The word tamim means whole or complete. In
>> other words everyone should be entirely with G?d and not devote anything to
>> the stars or constellations or to demons. Thus we see at the beginning of
>> the parsha (Devarim 18:9) when you come to the land which G-d has given to
>> you - you should not learn to do .because it won't be necessary since there
>> will be prophets who tell the future - while the non Jews know the future
>> from diviners and magicians.

Here's the citation I meant:
"We should not consult astrologers or others, and, in any case, should
not expect their predictions to come true, but should respond to their
predictions by saying "hakol biy'dei shamayim", for He changes the
celestial order as He desires ..."

Admittedly he goes on to attribute plausibility to their presictions
for non-Jews.

David Riceman

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Date: Tue, 19 Nov 2002 10:10:10 -0500
From: Maylocks1@aol.com
Re: Astrology

Things are getted heated, so I think I will abandon these debates, but
let me leave you with this. R. Saadiah Gaon also had a negative view
regarding astrology -- see his perush to Job ch. 39 p. 194-195.

             Marc Shapiro

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Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 01:58:01 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Astrology

On Sun, Nov 17, 2002 at 09:11:40AM +0200, Akiva Atwood wrote:
:> For example, had R' Yitzchaq mei'Akko (a da'as yachid from someone
:> rarely quoted) not found reasons from within Torah and mesorah to
:> justify dating the world at 15billion years, would we be able to
:> impose the very same idea only because of scientific data -- with
:> no basis within mesorah? Or the TY's dual creation theory?

: Why not? After all, the Torah isn't a Natural History textbook?

No, but... The Torah is still emes. If it makes an implication
that is physical, I would think it obvious that the physics is
good physics.

Since aggadita has no pesaq process, any of the conclusions
derivable from what was given at Sinai might be the one that
best jibes with the physics. Even if it's a yachid like RYmA
on the age of the universe.

If they all agree on some point, IOW, had it been true that there
is nothing in TSBP to indicate an old universe, how could a
ma'amin have believed otherwise? It's one thing to say the Torah
isn't aimed at explaining natural history, another to say it
makes false claims on the subject.

If mesorah, TSBP, makes a statement about physics, rather than
chazal using physics to explain some nequdah, I assume it's emes.
(Yes, that's a blurry and debatable line -- determining what is
from mesorah, and what is added to explain mesorah.)

Another nequdah: if there is no indication in TSBP that something
is anything but a historical claim, can we say otherwise? Isn't
pure allegory rare enough to be implied to be absent unless
the mesorah explicitly gives reason to believe otherwise?

: And Medicine? would you rule out medical theory/treatments that aren't
: found in the Torah?

Note the difference, I'm speaking of contradicting, not taking a
position where the Torah (including TSBP) is silent.


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.
Fax: (413) 403-9905             - R' Yekusiel Halberstam of Klausenberg zt"l

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Date: Mon, 18 Nov 2002 13:14:08 -0500
From: David Riceman <dr@insight.att.com>
Re: Atzas gedolim and the Ramban

"Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" wrote:
> I cannot understand why you cannot consider
> that profound knowledge of Torah is granted to those who have toiled
> mightily in it, infusing their minds with kedushah (ruach ha'kodesh) giving
> them more profound insight (emes) - which causes everything they say to be
> enhanced - which is why, of course, afilu sichas chullin shel talmidei
> chachamim tzricha talmud.

I was addressing the Ramban's opinion. Here's my opinion, since you
express interest:

If you look in Kether Rosh, by an anonymous talmid of R. Chaim Volozhin
(there are different versions published under different titles), you'll
see that he asked his rebbe whether he should be miyirei hahoraah.
R. Chaim replied that that apllied only in doroth harishonim, but
nowadays, when the acharonim have published extensive discussion,
someone who's baki in one specialty may pasken in that specialty.

My guess is that "the acharonim" means the Beith Yosef, and the argument
is as follows: in the good old days in order to pasken you needed to
know all of chazal and a good deal of rishonim, so that you could be
sure you had all the relevant information available to make a decision.
The Beith Yosef gathered that information into one place for you, making
it possible, in these decadent times, for anyone who really understands
the relevant sugyos to pasken, without needing to know gantz shas.

Now the Beith Yosef is a wonderful book, but there is a sense in which
it is limited. There is, for example, no siman on whether you should
have attended college, or many myriad of other questions of advice that
one needs to navigate the modern world. People like us might venture an
ignorant opinion, but only someone who can pull together all the relevant
sources in chazal can give a serious, scholarly answer. That's why it's
useful to ask advice of gedolim.

Some comments:

1. The reason I'm skeptical that the Ramban (or any rishon) would
discuss this is that, while you may not have needed to know gantz shas
to pasken before the dissemination of the Beis Yosef, you did need to
know 3 sedarim + Berachos, Chullin, and Niddah, which is a lot closer
than most rabbanim get nowadays. So I wouldn't expect this subject to
come up until the Beis Yosef became popular.

2. This implies that an eitzah can be expressed like a tshuva, with
mareh m'komos and logical arguments. We've argued before about whether
tshuvos are more authoritative with or without sources and reasoning,
but l'didi, that with is more authoritative, the same applies to eitzos.

3. Since you're particularly interested in ruach hakodesh in this
context, see the gemara in Brachos "afilu echad sheyoshev v'osek
batorah ...." So advice based on knowledge of Torah is accompanied
by the Shechinah (since I don't know percisely what wither you or the
gemara mean, I don't know if they're referring to the same process).

4. The Ramban denies that prophecy flows through the intellect (is
that what you mean by "mind" - can you translate into medieval Hebrew?),
so the mechanism you propose cannot be what he means.

David Riceman

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Date: Mon, 18 Nov 2002 13:59:13 -0500
From: "Shinnar, Meir" <Meir.Shinnar@rwjuh.edu>
RE: Shittat harambam

This has been an education about some modern ideas, athough it has shed
little light on the rambam.

At 10:53 PM 11/13/02 -0500, Jonathan Baker wrote:
>OK, out of curiosity, I looked.  It does seem to support RAF's position.
>I quote from the end of the chapter (Friedlaender):

RYGB wrote
: Look again, from the *beginning* - he rejects Aristotle on the basis of 
: pesukim in Navi and - were Aristotle to have proof he would regard the 
: pesukim in Bereishis as metaphor - but he cannot because of the Nevi'im.

Again, a unique and novel way of understanding the rambam. The rambam
rejects Aristotle because Aristotelian causality would make all divine
intervention and miracles impossible - but is willing to accept the
possibility of a Platonic interpretation of eternity - the rejection
is precisely because there is no logical proof of the second opinion a
la Plato, rather than from neviim. If there was, he would be willing to
reinterprete, even though there is no mesora.

(re check what he says in chapter 23 - velo titeh midaat hiddush haolam
ela bemofet, veze bilti nimza bateva - the issue is the lack of proof
from nature to the opposing position)

RMB wrote
} But, as RYGB beat me to it, the Rambam is pretty clearly stating that
} he would only consider allegorizing pesuqim IF it were consistant with
} mesorah. Not introduce a new concept into Torah to solely satisfy a
} scientific constraint. That would be giving greater ne'emanus to
} scientific method and contemporary theory than to Torah.

Where does the rambam ever state that? He states the exact opposite.
The criteria for reinterpretation is whether the opposite from pshat
has been proven by a mofet - convincing for proof (read 2:25 about why
he rejects the second (Platonic) approach)

The rejection of Aristotle is not that it is against the pshat of some
psukim or some mesora, but that it requires a fundamental reinterpretation
of all of the Torah, rather than merely maaseh breshit.

GIven the depth of problems caused by the Aristotelian approach, he says
that therefore one needs absolute proof - which, as he argues in several
chapters, is lacking.

Thus, if you look at ch 24, he brings down that Aristotle's proofs are
based on "maamarim sippuriyim" - and our torah is better than their
stories - not that our torah is better than their science - a statement
that is not found anywhere in the rambam.

At 10:18 AM 11/14/02 -0500, Shinnar, Meir wrote:
>My original stance (and I believe almost all of the people here..)was that
>the rambam's position on astrology was derived not from hazal, but from
>reason (broadly understood).  Given the rambam's belief  that hazal were
>great philosophers, he understood hazal as sharing and believing in this

Which you, and RMJF, believe to be the Rambam's distortion and erroneous
interpreatation of Chazal, culminating in an incorrect psak in Hil. AZ
Chap. 11 (after all these notes back and forth, I still have not seen
any of my correspondents attack this point!!!).

I am not aware that anyone thought that there was an incorrect psak,
and most of us have thought (and think) your learning of AZ chapter 11 to
be utterly irrelevant to the discussion. There are two separate issues:

1) Is astrology assur? and what is the basis of the issur?

Rambam learns that it is assur, based on meonen - clearly one reading
of the gmara (and I think other rishonim concur with its being assur -
the question of how far going the issur is (I recall that the ramban
permits some forms of astrology but not others))

2) Is astrology false? The rambam suggests a svara that anything that is
forbidden is false - astrology, kishuf, etc. This svara is consistent
with the rambam's general shitta on taame hamitzvot, but does not seem
to be shared by any other rishon, gaon, or member of hazal - and this
svara is the basis of the issue.

However, this is not a halachic issue, as the rambam views those who think
differently as fools, but doesn't consider such thought to be assur.
Therefore, the whole discussion is not on the halachic realm, but on
the hashkafic. Furthermore, there is no source prior to the rambam
(perhaps hovot halevavot from Marc SHapiro - I don't have those editions,
and don't know how extensive his rejection of astrology and witchcraft
is) which held that, and (almost?) no one after him or before him held
by that svara.

The rashba's and gra's rejection of the rambam is not based that this
is one svara from hazal that they paskened differently - they held that
the svara itself is inconsistent with all of hazal

(By the way, initially you insisted that the rambam's position is
completely based on mesorah - but then change and say that he was Yachid
bdoro and mimoshe ad moshe - which is it?)

(me -old)
>Few people (I can't think of anyone here) denied that the rambam
>believed that hazal denied astrology - the question was the basis of
>the belief - whether he came to that belief through hazal and mesora,
>or through the use of reason. No proof has been given for the former,
>although citations have been given (cited as irrelevant by RYGB) that
>the rambam would understand and reinterprete many maamre hazal against
>their simple pshatto make them consistent with the demands of reason.

: I have explained under separate cover how what is explainable elsewhere is 
: not explainable here - as this relates to core issues of Hashgacha and 
: interaction with the Beri'ah.

You have asserted that issues that relate to core issues of hashgacha
and interaction with the beria have different rules. I am sure that you
sincerely believe that, but the rambam nowhere makes that distinction,
and indeed, seems to use his allegorical interpretations - so my question
remains - outside of this being a core belief for you, where do we have
evidence for this position?

One of the most extensive discussions of the role of allegory is found
in the Meiri, who was responding to the criticism from abba mari and the
rashba to the radical Aristotelians - I will bring citations, but (IIRC)
nowhere is the differentiation that you make ever made, and the extent of
allegorizations apply, IIRC, to everything that contradicts reason, unless
it is explicitly clear that miracles are involved (will b"n bring source)

} Second, I find the idea simply shocking! What, Judaism has no permanent
} statement on anything but halachah? (Which, being a process, isn't
} static either!) I would wonder if entertaining this thought would
} have been possible had Brisker derekh not been so demographically
} successful. (Brisk, in the sense that one almost only studies halachic
} processs -- even down to having no tools for learning aggadita --
} and says that halachah isn't established on anything but halachah.)

} There is no process of pesaq for aggadita, no yachid verabim, no
} power of precedent. But don't Jewish beliefs have to come from
} Judaism?

} For example, had R' Yitzchaq mei'Akko (a da'as yachid from someone
} rarely quoted) not found reasons from within Torah and mesorah to
} justify dating the world at 15billion years, would we be able to
} impose the very same idea only because of scientific data -- with
} no basis within mesorah? Or the TY's dual creation theory?

There are two different types of statements - one that reflects values,
others that reflect an understanding of the metziut (which includes
hashem's relationship to the world). There are certain core issues
relating to the fact taht there is such a relationship, and that the tora
reflects that relationship (roughly the 13 ikkarim), but the demand that
all our knowledge of facts (rather than values and laws) comes from the
torah is not a universal one - it is quite clearly not the rambam's -
as above - and that you find it shocking reflects a particular bias.
Personally, I view such a demand as a fundamental misunderstanding of
the role and nature of tora, which actually demeans the role of tora.
To cite RY Lebowitz (whose position is far more radical than mine,
but has been misrepresented - this is quite a pithy summary) lo yarad
hashem al har sinai lelamed et bne yisrael astrophysica.

Meir Shinnar

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Date: Mon, 18 Nov 2002 14:46:16 -0500 (EST)
From: "Jonathan Baker" <jjbaker@panix.com>
shitat haRambam

> At 10:53 PM 11/13/02 -0500, Jonathan Baker wrote:

>>OK, out of curiosity, I looked.  It does seem to support RAF's position.
>>I quote from the end of the chapter (Friedlaender):
> Look again, from the *beginning* - he rejects Aristotle on the basis of 
> pesukim in Navi and - were Aristotle to have proof he would regard the 
> pesukim in Bereishis as metaphor - but he cannot because of the Nevi'im.

You're reading him exactly backwards. I admit the translation is a bit
confusing, but it is exactly the opposite of what you say, although
I can see how you might read it your way. I bring the text from the
seforimonline.org version of Friedlaender.

: WE do not reject the Eternity of the Universe, because certain
: passages in Scripture confirm the Creation; for such passages are
: not more numerous than those in which God is represented as a
: corporeal being; nor is it impossible or difficult to find for them a
: suitable interpretation. 

This is the sentence that is confusing you.

Let me rephrase it:

The fact that certain passages in Scripture confirm creation is not
sufficient proof by which to reject the Eternity of the Universe.
For there are at least as many passages in which God is represented as
a corporeal being [whose allegorical nature we have demonstrated in the
First Section]; nor is it impossible or difficult to find a suitable
allegorization for them.

It's a little clearer in Hebrew, but the whole paragraph is rather opaque,
since I don't know a lot of his philosophical Hebrew:
: Da ki ein b'rihhateinu min hama'amar b'kidmut ha'olam mipnei
: haketuvim asher ba'u batorah bihyot ha'olam mechudash...

Know that our flight from the statement of the Eternity of the
Universe is not because of verses brought from the Torah about
the creation of the Universe...

:                            We might have explained them in the same
: manner as we did in respect to the Incorporeality of God. We
: should perhaps have had an easier task in showing that the
: Scriptural passages referred to are in harmony with the theory of
: the Eternity of the Universe if we accepted the latter, than we had
: in explaining the anthropomorphisms in the Bible when we
: rejected the idea that God is corporeal. 

We could just as easily have allegorized the verses which refer to
Creation as we allegorized the verses about a corporeal God.

:                                          For two reasons, however,
: we have not done so, and have not accepted the Eternity of the
: Universe. 

First reason:

:           First, the Incorporeality of God has been demonstrated
: by proof: those passages in the Bible, which in their literal sense
: contain statements that can be refuted by proof, must and can be
: interpreted otherwise. But the Eternity of the Universe has not
: been proved; a mere argument in favour of a certain theory is not
: sufficient reason for rejecting the literal meaning of a Biblical text,
: and explaining it figuratively, when the opposite theory can be
: supported by an equally good argument.

Metaphysical/logical proof of a concept suffices to override literal
readings of a passage. There are such proofs of the incorporeality
of God. But Aristotle has not provided such proofs for the Eternity
of the Universe.

Second reason:

: Secondly, our belief in the Incorporeality of God is not contrary to
: any of the fundamental principles of our religion: it is not contrary
: to the words of any prophet. Only ignorant people believe that it is
: contrary to the teaching of Scripture: but we have shown that this
: is not the case: on the contrary, Scripture teaches the
: Incorporeality of God. 

So far so good.

:                        If we were to accept the Eternity of the
: Universe as taught by Aristotle, that everything in the Universe is
: the result of fixed laws, that Nature does not change, and that there
: is nothing supernatural, we should necessarily be in opposition to
: the foundation of our religion, we should disbelieve all miracles
: and signs, and certainly reject all hopes and fears derived from
: Scripture, unless the miracles are also explained figuratively. The
: Allegorists amongst the Mohammedans have done this, and have
: thereby arrived at absurd conclusions. 

Accepting the Eternity of the Universe would necessitate allegorizing
a lot more of Scripture, and disbelief in miracles, Revelation, etc.

:                                        If, however, we accepted the
: Eternity of the Universe in accordance with the second of the
: theories which we have expounded above (ch. xxiii.), and
: assumed, with Plato, that the heavens are likewise transient, we
: should not be in opposition to the fundamental principles of our
: religion: this theory would not imply the rejection of miracles, but,
: on the contrary, would admit them as possible. The Scriptural text
: might have been explained accordingly, and many expressions
: might have been found in the Bible and in other writings that
: would confirm and support this theory. 

If we had to accept the Eternity of the Universe, there is already a
theory, attributed to Plato, which allows for Revelation and miracles in
an eternal Universe; so we wouldn't have any great trouble alleogorizing
Scripture to fit an Eternal Universe theory.

:                                        But there is no necessity
: for this expedient, so long as the theory has not been proved. As
: there is no proof sufficient to convince us, this theory need not be
: taken into consideration, nor the other one: we take the text of the
: Bible literally, and say that it teaches us a truth which we cannot
: prove: and the miracles are evidence for the correctness of our
: view.

But the Eternity of the Universe has NOT been proved, so there is no
necessity to allegorize. But it's good to know that we could, if we
had to, in such a way that Judaism wouldn't disappear.

Skipping much of the next paragraph, I bring the conclusion:

: Owing to the absence of all proof, we reject the theory of
: the Eternity of the Universe: and it is for this very reason that the
: noblest minds spent and will spend their days in research. For if
: the Creation had been demonstrated by proof, even if only
: according to the Platonic hypothesis, all arguments of the
: philosophers against us would be of no avail. If, on the other hand,
: Aristotle had a proof for his theory, the whole teaching of
: Scripture would be rejected, and we should be forced to other
: opinions. I have thus shown that all depends on this question. Note
: it.

There is no way around it: for Rambam, philosophical proof has the
power to override literal readings of Scripture, and to necessitate
allegorization of Scripture. Philosophical proof supports the
incorporeality of God, and therefore it was logically necessary to
allegorize those verses which refer to a corporeal God. There is no
philosophical proof of the Eternity of the Universe, so we don't need
to allegorize those verses which refer to a Creation which began at a
point in time. But if there were such a proof, WE WOULD HAVE NO CHOICE

   - jon baker    jjbaker@panix.com     <http://www.panix.com/~jjbaker> -

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Date: Mon, 18 Nov 2002 21:03:26 -0500
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Re: Rambam - Moreh

RDR wrote a post today that I find myself in agreement with. Kachenu

As to 2:25, shteit b'feirush (your translation - BTW, your translation
of the preceding few lines is not correct):

At 02:51 PM 11/17/02 +0000, Eli Turkel wrote:
>Aristotle's theory that nature can never change contradicts the
>essence of Judaism and all miracles and all the promises of the
>torah. Unless we explain that all miracles are also allegorical.

He actually says much more than that:

"It contradicts the Torah from its origin, definitively denies all the
miracles, and cancels all the hopes which the Torah promise and all
those that it employed to frighten..."

Thus Aristotle, bona fide kadmus, is rejected on the basis of Torah.

Now, Plato, who really doesn't hold of eternity, does not contradict
the Torah's destinies. So there he rejects this pseudo-kadmus becasue
once you have rejected bona fide kadmus - on the basis of pesukim and
our mesorah - there is no reason to accept some half baked kadmus,
even though it is not outright kefirah in HKB"H's Creation.

What does this prove?

>Even with regard to the statement that G-d has no body - Rambam
>reinterpreted pesukim based on his own logic. He does not claim that
>this is based on a masoretic tradition. In fact others attacked him on
>this issue because they felt that chazal did not agree with him

You mean the Rambam made up his own theological principle and then
declared it as an ikkar of Judaism?!

Kol Tuv,
ygb@aishdas.org      http://www.aishdas.org/rygb

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Date: Mon, 18 Nov 2002 18:21:50 GMT
From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@juno.com>
ve'eid ya'aleh min ha'arez

I need to explain this pasuk, whether it is part of the rain cycle,
if not what it is, without recourse to midrashim such as those brought
by Rashi, for an unaffiliated person.

Any ideas?


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Date: Mon, 18 Nov 2002 19:09:28 -0500
From: "Feldman, Mark" <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
Living in Yerushalayim

R Yaakov Ellis wrote the following on Areivim:
> Last mishna in Ketuvot: "...hakol ma'alin l'Yerushalayim v'ein hakol
> motzi'in, echad anashim v'echad nashim...", and the gemara there (110b).
> Also see SA, EH 86:4. Isn't the direct implication of this halacha (A
> husband/wife can force their spouse to move to Yerushalayim) indicative
> of the extra ma'alah of living there? (Isn't this the same reason that
> a husband/wife can force their spouse to move from chutz l'aretz to EY -
> because EY has a higher ma'alah of living there)?

1. Is the additional kedusha only in the Old City, or even if samuch
v'nireh (compare laws of mukaf choma)?

2. Why do we find that people who make aliyah don't necessarily choose
to live in Yerushalayim (other than cost)?

Kol tuv,

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Date: Tue, 19 Nov 2002 11:37:07 +1100
From: "SBA" <sba@iprimus.com.au>

From: "Ira L. Jacobson" <laser@ieee.org>
> At or about 19:09, 14/11/02 -0600, Avodah's email stated:
>>My son mentioned that someone told him about the
>>minhag of reading it Yisaschar the first time, and Yisachar every other
>>time, a minhag of which I have heard, but for which I do not recall a
>>source. Anyone?

> Lu`ah Davar be`Ito lists the following minhagim:

Just to add to the confusion...

The famous sefer [by Rav Hersh Meilech or Zvi Elimelech for you
perfectionists - Shapiro zt'l is known as Bnei Yissoschor whilst the
late Belzer Rebbe's father was known as Rav Yisochor Dov zt'l - as is
his grandson - todays BR.


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Date: Tue, 19 Nov 2002 07:10:19 +0200
From: "Ira L. Jacobson" <laser@ieee.org>
Re: Yisochor-Yisoschor

At 11:37 19/11/02 +1100, SBA wrote:
>Just to add to the confusion...
>The famous sefer [by Rav Hersh Meilech or Zvi Elimelech
>for you perfectionists - Shapiro zt'l  is known as Bnei Yissoschor
>  whilst the late Belzer Rebbe's father was known as
>Rav Yisochor Dov zt'l - as is his grandson - todays BR.

And further to this thread, my son-in-law's grandfather, Harav Yisakhar
Tamar ZT"L of Tel-Aviv, author of the Alei Tamar on the Yerushalmi,
spelled his name with a single "sin." And pronounced it accordingly.


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