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Volume 10 : Number 134

Thursday, March 27 2003

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Mon, 28 Oct 2002 21:03:36 -0500
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Subject:
RE:atzas gdolim


Here we go round...

At 06:19 PM 10/28/02 -0500, Shinnar, Meir wrote:
>No, here you misunderstand me.  I am not denying a theology, nor claiming
>just a religion of halacha.  I am merely saying that what the theology says
>is not quite as pashut -   quite a different view. (setting up straw men is
>apparently quite popular on both sides...:-))

Do, then tell - where it theology to be found, if not in Chazal?!

>The original issue is that you required a pshat understanding of a
>particular maamar hazal, and insisted that reinterpretation is limited to
>particular items - ma'asim - rather than a general approach to aggadta.  It
>is this narrow approach that I don't think can be supported.

I am still waiting for the proof fahkert.

>RYGB
>"Proven by proofs" means those found in the Nevi'im and Chazal! (Who,
>the Rambam held, were, of course, of keen philosophical capactiy and
>wisdom.) See the letter to Marseilles p. 21 (LE ed.), Hil. akum perek
>1 and perek 11.
>
>Me
>from where do you get the first part? Clearly the rambam held the second
>part (no question). However, the proofs the rambam brings are based on
>reason, not on imre hazal or the neviim, even though he viewed them as
>having "keen philosophical capactiy and wisdom"

Nope - the sources I cite in the Rambam are based, explicitly, on Nach and 
Chazal. Sorry. You could look them up.

Of course the Rambam cites logic as being in line with Chazal!

>One doesn't reject divrei chazal - one tries to understand what they
>really meant, which is not necessarily the pshat, even if it is not
>allegorical (this is, of course, a major hilluk between the rambam and
>rav sherira gaon, but that is another issue). Believing that chachamim
>have some innate connection to the heavens is (to some of us) as much
>an emuna tefela as red bands..(and of potentially far greater harm)

Really...

>I have not denied aggada as bereft of stature and authority, merely the
>pshat of aggada - quite a different thing.   Furthermore, I am not claiming
>that everything needs to be proven by reason - merely that it not be
>irrational - and you suggest that means I should reject some of the ikkarim
>- suggesting that you don't believe they stand up to the light of reason.

So what proves what?! I am still avidly awaiting your system's explication!

Since you like ending with quotes:

Im Rishonim k'malacxhim, anu k'bnei adam; v'im Rishonim k'bnei adam, anu 
k'chamorim; v'lo k'chamoro d'R' Pinchas ben Yair.

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


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Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2003 20:36:19 -0500 (EST)
From: Shalom Carmy <carmy@ymail.yu.edu>
Subject:
NOT BEING A NUDNIK BEFORE G-D


> There is a related theme - Not bothering G-d with our personal requests.
> This seems to have been a major theme of the Magid of Mezerich but
> Rav Chaim Voloshner Ruach Chaim 3:2 has a similar point of view. We
> are only to be concerned with the suffering of the Shechina - not our
> petty complaints.

1. The Rav's understanding of halakhic Tefilla is that G-d does welcome
our "petty" requests. That is the implication of the nusah of prayer
that we recite.

2. In my article, when I speak of being a nudnik it is NOT because the
potential nudnik is bothering G-d with trivialities (how can bringing
a korban hattat be considered a triviality?) but because the pasuk,
the Gemara and the Rambam in Moreh Nevukhim imply that approaching
G-d should not be a casual routine matter. If it's a matter of routine
(whether because it is compelled because of sin or for any other reason)
one is a nudnik. If one approaches G-d as a privilege, then one is
welcome before Him, however trivial the subject of the entreaty.


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Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2003 21:08:55 -0500
From: "sba@iprimus.com.au" <sba@iprimus.com.au>
Subject:
RE: CY/ChC


From: Stuart Klagsbrun <SKlagsbrun@agtnet.com> 
> Here's another version: In RDF's home they drink ChY but are not makpid
> on other dairy products including baked goods.

Is this the same R. Feinstein who was said - some time ago on Areivim -
to DAVKA buy ChC - when the other magidei Shiur in his yeshiva drink
CY? Or is this his brother? Or are we stam being 'motzi laaz' on these
2 choshuva RYs?

As I have mentioned many times before - afilu im tirtza loymar that RMF
was mattir ChC lekatchila,(which according to some of his tshuvos is lo
mahsma kein,) that may be for milk which some may say is an important
nutritional food. But I doubt if any of his psokim mentions ice cream,
chocolate and other foods which one can very well live without..

SBA 
(who, even without ChC nasheray, is about 20 kilos overweight...)


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Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 02:27:04 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: Fish


On Sun, Mar 23, 2003 at 06:46:34PM -0500, Mlevinmd@aol.com wrote:
: I now had a chance to check Ohr Hachaim on the posuk in Breishis Aleph -
: "v'yirdu b'dgas hayam" where he says it a little different. He says
: that tsadikkim are mgulgol into fish because they do not need to go
: through tsaar shechita. Also he seems to say that there is a hierarchy -
: first to fish, less worthy to birds, thereafter to b'heima based on the
: sequence of that posuk.

Makes sense, it fits a progression. The greatest zechus is to return as
something that only requires asifah; the 2nd is one that requires 1 siman,
and the third -- 2 simanim.

-mi


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Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 02:34:16 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: gilgul


: The Ari also originally formulated the idea that one is not a gilgul of
: just one neshamah, but one's neshamah is a gilgul of a multitude of other
: neshamot, akin to a genetic blueprint.... Every (human?) being has then its
: own unique configuration, a soul which never again enters another human
: body (but I am not sure about animal bodies) in the exact same makeup."

There is an aspect of the neshamah that distinguishes us from animals --
the ru'ach memallela.

Clearly -- and this goes to the heart of our original conversation --
the animal that's a gilgul that includes this nitzotz would be a unique
exceptional case.

It would seem therefore that the same configuration entering an animal
body would require an exception as well.

-mi

-- 
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: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 02:30:15 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: hora'as sh'oah --


On Sun, Mar 16, 2003 at 06:46:53PM -0500, Joelirich@aol.com wrote:
: I think we discussed this once before - AIUI this assumes that in each
: generation there is an affirmative decision by the leaders of that
: generation that the conditions that caused the original horraah continue
: (ie it is not a permanent akirah since a oraat shaah by definition can't
: be permanent)

Note what this implies:

Not only is Eliahu beHar haKarmel being used as a precedent for other
nevi'im, for soferim, and for musmachei Mosheh, but this says much more.

Even after the Sanhderin and the current lack of semichah, even after
Ravina veR' Ashi sof hora'ah, we can make a hora'as sha'ah over and
over...

Since we generally take "sof hora'ah" less-than-literally, I can't find
it a ra'ayah against -- but this seems like a HUGE chiddush to me.

-mi

-- 
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: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 02:37:56 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: Zecher and zeicher


On Mon, Mar 24, 2003 at 12:45:00PM -0500, RabbiRichWolpoe@aol.com wrote:
:> I think some posters are beginning to forget that R' Hayyim Volozhiner
:> also wrote, in his letter printed as an introduction/haskama to Ma'aseh
:> Rav, that M"R was wrong because R' Hayyim clearly heard the Gra say
:> zeikher. Perhaps he changed his mind in his old age.

...
: & FWIW LFAD, even if the Gra had a safeik re: Zecher vs. Zeicher,
: I doubt it was more than a lamdusher sh'eila and that the GRA himself
: never intended it to be lained twice l'ma'aseh .

The safeiq was not the Gra's -- it was between his talmidim. The way I
heard it, the source for leining both is to be yotzei both lefi MR and
RCV.

In any case, these talmidim did NOT treat it as a pure lomdisher question.
Note RCV used the Gaon's actions *lema'aseh* to prove his point!

(I realize this brings to question a deep-held belief of yours about
the halachic chiddushim of the Gra and of Brisk in general.)

-mi

-- 
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: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 01:19:41 EST
From: T613K@aol.com
Subject:
Re: Disclosure of sources mandated?


From: Phyllostac@aol.com
> The gemara (IIRC) says that if someone is being given kovod as if he was
> boki in two mesechtos, but, in reality, was only boki in one, he should
> correct the people's misimpression and tell them that he is only boki
> in one.
> 
> I see some people at times make postings containing many mareh mekomos.
> 
> ...
> My question is - if a person reels off a lengthy list of mareh mekomos
> or shows impressive knowledge - but in reality it is not from his head -
> rather from something like a Bar-Ilan database - should they be advised /
> required to state to people that they are really not such big beki'im -
> rather just users of some good software ?

If the person is giving a shiur or writing an article for publication,
full disclosure is called for. If he is posting to the internet, I don't
think such high standards are required. I realize Avodah is archived,
but it still possesses the basic ephemerality of the internet. Sort of
like call-in radio shows, anyone can say anything. It is up to the
reader, or listener, to investigate further. No one earns a reputation
as a talmid chacham, or a scholar in any field, based solely on what he
writes in cyberspace.

Toby Katz


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Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 01:24:25 EST
From: T613K@aol.com
Subject:
Re: Humility


From: Eli Turkel <turkel@post.tau.ac.il>
> What bothers me is that given these criteria (especially #6) how
> does any posek get the nerve to decide he is qualified to be a posek?
> Given a question his answer should be "please go to a real posek since
> I am not qualified"

You are not defining the word "humility" correctly. It doesn't mean
doubting your own competence in an area in which you know you are
competent.

It does mean treating other people with respect and deference, and also
knowing your own limitations. To give an analogy, a doctor who exhibited
humility would not be one who refused to make a diagnosis or prescribe
treatment; rather, it would be a doctor who treated his patients in a
humane and courteous manner, and also one who was willing to consult
other doctors when in doubt.

Toby Katz


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Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 12:35:41 +0300
From: "Danny Schoemann" <dannyschoemann@hotmail.com>
Subject:
Re: who is a posek


Reb Eli Turkel asked:
>What bothers me is that given these criteria (especially #6) how
>does any posek get the nerve to decide he is qualified to be a posek.
>Given a question his answer should be "please go to a real posek since
>I am not qualified"

IIRC Humility means being aware of how "great" (gifted / strong / pretty /
learned, etc.) one is, and realizing that it's a divine gift.
A posek would therefore be aware that he knows the halocho better than
most people alive, and yet realize that:
   (1) it's due to divine assistance in his learning and/or memory and
   (2) that being human he could err -- especially if he doesn't pay full
       attention to the psak on hand.

- Danny, who doesn't know much about psak or humility. :-)


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Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 08:43:56 +0200
From: "Carl and Adina Sherer" <sherer@actcom.co.il>
Subject:
Re: earliest mincha


On 14 Mar 2003 at 2:50, Daniel Eidensohn wrote:
> Concerning the issue of when chatzos is the following was stated on
> Rabbi Blumencrantz's Pesach Bulletin
...
>     a) 12 hours after midday (This is the majority opinion).
>     [According to Rabbi Feinstein, ztl , and the Aruch Hashulchan who
>     are of the opinion that midday is always constant, i.e. 12:00 PM
>     -midnight would then be 12:00 AM...

Doesn't that have to be adjusted for daylight savings time? 

-- Carl

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


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Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 12:57:33 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: earliest mincha


On Wed, Mar 26, 2003 at 08:43:56AM +0200, Carl and Adina Sherer wrote:
: >     a) 12 hours after midday (This is the majority opinion).
: >     [According to Rabbi Feinstein, ztl , and the Aruch Hashulchan who
: >     are of the opinion that midday is always constant, i.e. 12:00 PM
: >     -midnight would then be 12:00 AM. According to those authorities
: >     whose opinion is that midday is variant, Chatzos this year
: >     (5762-2002) would be at 12:02 am. This is so because midday on
: >     Erev Pesach, is 12:02 PM.

: Doesn't that have to be adjusted for daylight savings time? 

... and from standard time to local time -- IOW, adjusting for the fact
that you're not in the middle of the time zone. That's the very inyan
under discussion!

There are 24 time zones. Greenwich England is at 0deg longitude (by
definition) and is the middle of a time zone. So, all time zones are
15deg wide, centered about a number divisible by 15. As a time zone
represents 1 hr, there is 4 minutes time correction for every degree
longitude you're off from the center.

To get your local chatzos lefi R' Moshe:
1- Take your longitude.
2- Get the remainder after dividing by 15.
3- Multiple by the result by four (converting deg longitude to minutes
   of time)
4a- If the remainder is less than 60:
	add that number of minutes to 12:00.
5b- Otherwise:
	add that number of minutes to 11:00.

6- Add for daylight savings time, if applicable.
7- In some locations the time zone is artificially bent to give unity
within a country's borders. In which case, you may also have to tweak
this formula by an hour.

-mi

-- 
Micha Berger                 I slept and dreamt that life was joy.
micha@aishdas.org            I awoke and found that life was duty.
http://www.aishdas.org       I worked and, behold -- duty is joy.
Fax: (413) 403-9905                            -  Rabinranath Tagore


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Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 14:49:55 +0100
From: Arie Folger <afolger@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: Eiruvin


I wrote:
>> BTW, a bridge does not count as a tzurat hapessach, as per RMF contra
>> Rav Kasher, and a ThP does not termintae a real reshut harabbim (atu
>> rabbim umevatlei me'hitzah).

RMLevin commented:
> As I understand it, the question is whethe passage of cars, where
> people do not stop and get out, can be considered "Ati rabbim umvatli
> mchitsata".

RM Klein apparently claims so, but I have great trouble finding much
credit to this idea, and I am in good company ;-). Do you think that
'Hazal would have said that pedestrians can be mevatel a me'hitzah,
but donkey riders not?

Arie Folger
-- 
If an important person, out of humility, does not want to rely on [the Law, as 
applicable to his case], let him behave as an ascetic. However, permission 
was not granted to record this in a book, to rule this way for the future 
generations, and to be stringent out of one's own accord, unless he shall 
bring clear proofs from the Talmud [to support his argument].
	paraphrase of Rabbi Asher ben Ye'hiel, as quoted by Rabby Yoel
	Sirkis, Ba'h, Yoreh De'ah 187:9, s.v. Umah shekatav.


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Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 09:50:51 -0500
From: Mlevinmd@aol.com
Subject:
Re: Standing for Parshas Zakhor


I asked a friend from whom I first heard of this minhag about a source
of the minhag to stand for a mitsva.

He responded: "Ayin Misnha Bikurim 3:3".

If I find more I will send it to you.

M. Levin


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Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 14:42:24 -0500
From: "Gil Student" <gil@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Tinok She-Nishbah


I've been considering the apparent stirah between what the Rambam
writes in hilchos mamrim 3:3 about the children of Karaites and what
he writes in Moreh Nevuchim at the end of 1:31 (I found the Friedlander
translation on the web so I copied the passage below). In hilchos mamrim
he writes that the children of Karaites were raised on their mistake
and therefore are "ke-anus" while in MN he seems to explicitly reject
that argument. The only person I've seen to deal with this is Menachem
Kellner who distinguishes between the first five ikkarim, i.e. about G-d,
for which there is no excuse and the last 8 ikkarim for which there is
an excuse. (Gerald Blidstein in his recent peirush on Hilchos Mamrim
struggles with it but has no answer)

 I think that, perhaps, we can explain the stirah if we focus on the
following sentence from MN: "There is no excuse whatever for those who,
being unable to think for themselves, do not accept [the doctrine of
the incorporeality of God] from the true philosophers." The hamon am
are obligated to follow their chachamim. Someone who breaks off from
Judaism is rejecting his own chachamim and is therefore liable. However,
someone raised in Karaism is following his own chachamim and is not
liable. This still leaves open those Karaites who are intellectually
capable of arriving at the truth on their own. According to the Rambam
in MN they are liable while according to the Rambam in hilchos mamrim
they are not. But that could possibly be explained that they lack the
proper training to arrive at the truth and are, therefore, not able to
think for themselves.

This seems somewhat forced so I ask whether anyone has anything on
the subject. Any mareh mekomos or original thoughts of your own?

Gil Student

Moreh Nevuchim 1:31 (Friedlander translation)
"If you think that there is an excuse for those who believe in the
corporeality of God on the ground of their training, their ignorance
or their defective comprehension, you must make the same concession to
the worshippers of idols: their worship is due to ignorance, or to early
training," they continue in the custom of their fathers." (T.B. Hullin,
13a) You will perhaps say that the literal interpretation of the Bible
causes men to fall into that doubt, but you must know that idolaters were
likewise brought to their belief by false imaginations and ideas. There is
no excuse whatever for those who, being unable to think for themselves,
do not accept [the doctrine of the incorporeality of God] from the true
philosophers. I do not consider those men as infidels who are unable to
prove the incorporeality, but I hold those to be so who do not believe it,
especially when they see that Onkelos and Jonathan avoid [in reference
to God] expressions implying corporeality as much as possible."


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Date: Wed, 26 Mar 2003 21:45:10 +0200
From: "reuven koss" <kmr5@zahav.net.il>
Subject:
Standing for Laining


On 25 Mar 2003 at 12:47, RabbiRichWolpoe@aol.com wrote:
> I have no RAYA to this, BUT we can show that there is a minhg to stand
> DAVKA at the haftora of Shavuos which is the ma'aseh merkava.=20

From: "Carl M. Sherer" <cmsherer@fandz.com>
> I have never heard of such a minhag. How widespread is it? If you're
> going to stand for that Haftorah, why not also for the Haftorah of
> Parshas Yisro?

The minhag to stand fo maseh merkava is brought down in the mishna
berura on hil. shavuos (the end of hil. pesach)


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Date: Thu, 27 Mar 2003 12:13:15 +0200
From: Saul Stokar <dp22414@elbit.co.il>
Subject:
Standing for mitzvot


A number of people have recently mentioned sources for the requirment
to stand when performing various mitzvot. I would like to point
out a very interesing discussion on this subject in Shlomo Buber's
introduction to his edition of the Psikta D'Rav Cahana. For those you
do not have access to this source or who are unfamiliar with it, I have
provided a translation below. In his introduction, Buber points out the
distinction between three separate works, viz. Psikta D'Rav Cahana,
Psikta Rabbati and Psikta Zutrata, written in different periods, by
different authors/editors. He notes that this distinction was not always
recognized by scholars throughtout the ages. He writes (my translation
from Hebrew, square brackets are my interpolation):

In the printed version of Shibaley Haleket, "Succa", sec. 188 and in
Tanya Rabbati, "Etrog", end of section 85 he [viz. the author] writes:
"The author of Lekach Tov explains the source for blessing the Lulav
while standing as the similarity [of the word] "unto yourselves" (lachem)
here and in the counting of the Omer - it is written here [Lulav] "Take
for yourselves" and it says there [Omer] "Count for yourselves", and
the counting of the Omer must be performed standing, as it is written
"when you put the sickle to the corn [kama]" - read not, kama [corn]
but koma [upright]." [Buber continues:]
I have found this exegesis in Psikta Zutrata, "Emor", page 29, side 3.
[i.e. Buber is proving that the Psikta Zutrata is sometimes referred to as
"Lekach Tov"]. In Shibolei Haleket (manuscript), "Laws of Circumcision",
section 4 (in the printed versions the laws of circumcision are missing)
and in Tanya Rabbati, "Laws of Circumcision", end of section 94, they
wrote: "one must recite the blessing on the circumcision while standing,
and this is also written by Rabbenu Tuvia, that we derive [this law]
from the counting of the Omer, etc.". Similarly, Ittur, vol 2, page 34
side 3 states: "Rabbenu Tuvia states that the blessing [on the Tzitzit"]
must be reciting while standing, since it is written "They shall be for
yourselves for Tzitzit" and we expound on the similarity of the word "for
yourselvdes", as it is written "you shall count for yourselves". Just as
the counting [of the Omer] must be performed standing, so the wrapping of
the Tzitzit. And from whence do we know there [i.e. that the Omer must
be counted while standing]? As it is written "bakama" ". I found [the
source for this] in Psikta Zutrata, "Shlach", page 3 [or 50?], side 4,
where he also mentions the parallel law I quoted earlier from Shibolei
Haleket concerning circumcision. He conclude from this that they indeed
referred to [the work] that is now referred to as Psikta Zutrata.

It bears noting that in the commentary of the Rosh (Rabbenu Asher) to
the end of T.B. Pesachim (section 41) it is written: "when we say the
blessing [for the counting of the Omer], we should recite it standing,
DT"R "[when you put the sickle to] the corn, commence to count" - read
not, "bakama" [corn] but instead "bekoma" [upright]. The gaon Rav Yehuda
Bachrach [author of Nimukei HaGriv on the Rosh] glosses there:

"I cannot find this anywhere in Shas, with all due respect to the author
of Be'er HaGola to Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim 489,4 who references "the
braita of kama-koma". The Keseph Mishne to Hil. T'midim Umusafim, 3,23
states: "one must count standing etc. Ri Ibn Giyyat states that there is
a tradition to this effect, and the Rabbis based themselves [asmechuha
rabbanan] on the term "kama" re-interpreted as "koma". Therefore
[concludes HaGRIV], it appears that the text originally read "the Rabbis
based themselves" ("desamchuha rabbanan") as an abbreviation (DS"R)
and the printers did not recognize the abbreviation and changed it
to DT"R [which was then identified as "detanu rabbanan" - the Rabbi's
taught]. I noticed that even the Beit Yoseph on O.H. 489, as well as
the Taz (subsection 2) cite the words of the Rosh as: DT"R bakama."

The gaon Rav Z.H. Chajes [Mahartz Chayut] in this work "Imrei Bina"
states: "if you check Birkai Yoseph, section 5, you will find that
the source of this exegesis [i.e. bakama-bekoma] is the Psikta of R'
Tuvia. Similarly, I have found in Resp. Hametzaref, Vol II, section 188
that when he was asked about the matter Maharam Kunitz disagreed with
the conclusion of the GRIV, explaining that the exegesis is found in
the Psekita, as quoted in Birkai Yoseph, and it is well known that the
Psikta was written by Chazal - indeed the Keseph Mishne cites the Psikta
as the source of many laws quoted by the Rambam, so it was correct for
the Rosh to the use the phrase DT"R regarding this law i.e. "as the Rabbis
taught" and the text [of the Rosh] should not be emended at all." However,
[concludes Buber], Mahram Kunitz confused the Psikta Zutrata [which is
indeed the source of the above law] with the Psikta of Rav Cahana. He
[Mahram Kunitz] did not know that the Psikta of R' Tuvai [i.e. Zutrata]
is not identical with the ancient Psikta [i.e. Psikta D'Rav Cahana],
as R' Tuvia was a late authority ["acharon"} who collected [sources]
from Midrashim, Tamud Bavli as well as Geonic sources, and who lived in
the year 4856 [1096 ACE], and regarding whom one cannot use the phrase
DT"R. In addition to the Birchei Yoseph cited by Maratz Hayut and Maharam
Kunitz who recognized the source of the law as Psikta Zutrata, with all
due respect they were unaware of the other sources I [i.e. Buber] cited,
such as Ittur, Shibolei Haleket and Tanya, all of whom cite the source
as Lekach Tov, i.e. the very same author [viz. R' Tuvia].

In addition to all these [sources] I have found a responsum of Rav Hai
Gaon (Shaarei Teshuva, section 79) which states: "as to your question
whether we have a source for [the requirement] that all blessings be
recited while standing, he [viz. R. Hai] responded that that is certainly
the case, as it is written "He stood and blessed the entire congregation
of Israel" and so is [the tradition] of our forebearers, that the source
for [the requirement] that all blessings be recited while standing is
[the verse] "And he stood and blessed ..". And [the requirement that]
the counting of the Omer [be performed] while standing as well, [is] the
verse where it is written "when you put the sickle to the corn" - why is
it written "to the corn" [bakama]? To teach us that it [counting] should
be performed while standing and in an upright position" (end of quote from
Rav Hai). In Rokeach, section 319 he cites: "I came across a volume of
French customs [where it was written] that the source for reciting the
blessing of the Omer standing is the verse "when you put the sickle to
the corn" - read not corn [kama] but koma [upright]" (end of quite from
Rokeach). In the work Orchot Chaim of R. Aharon HaCohen of Lunel (Laws
of Tzitzit, section 28) is also cites this [exegesis], as he writes:
"Some say that the blessing for the Omer, Tzitzit, Lulav, Megilla and
Shofar should be recited while standing, and all are learned from the
geziara shava etc. it is written kama and we explicate koma." (end of
quote from O.H.). Rashi in is work Pardes Major, Laws of Rosh Hashana,
page 42 side 2, wrote: "there are those who have a tradition [degamri]
of a gezaira shava "unto yourselves"-"unto yourselves" ["lachem-lachem"]
from the Omer, and indeed for any mitzva where the phrase "unto yourselves
("lachem")" is used, the mitzva should be performed while standing, but
this is incorrect". [Buber speculates that] perhaps he [i.e. Rashi] was
referring to R' Tuvia who was a contemporary of Rashi, of blessed memory.

(Recall that the above are not my own words, but a translation of Buber's
words).

Saul Stokar


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Date: Thu, 27 Mar 2003 09:38:27 -0500
From: David Riceman <dr@insight.att.com>
Subject:
Re: Tinok She-Nishbah


Gil Student wrote:
> I've been considering the apparent stirah between what the Rambam
> writes in hilchos mamrim 3:3 about the children of Karaites and what
> he writes in Moreh Nevuchim at the end of 1:31 (I found the Friedlander
> translation on the web so I copied the passage below). In hilchos mamrim
> he writes that the children of Karaites were raised on their mistake
> and therefore are "ke-anus" while in MN he seems to explicitly reject
> that argument.

I think this is a straightforward example of two dinim. In Hilchos
Mamrim he's talking about our obligations to karaim (in particular,
does moridim v'lo maalim apply), and in the MN he's discussing whether
God will find them culpable in Olam HaEmes.

David Riceman


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Date: Thu, 27 Mar 2003 11:10:22 -0500
From: Mlevinmd@aol.com
Subject:
Re: Stirah in rambam


> I've been considering the apparent stirah between what the Rambam
> writes in hilchos mamrim 3:3 about the children of Karaites and what
> he writes in Moreh Nevuchim at the end of 1:31 (I found the Friedlander
> translation on the web so I copied the passage below). In hilchos mamrim
> he writes that the children of Karaites were raised on their mistake
> and therefore are "ke-anus" while in MN he seems to explicitly reject
> that argument. The only person I've seen to deal with this is Menachem
> Kellner who distinguishes between the first five ikkarim, i.e. about G-d,
> for which there is no excuse and the last 8 ikkarim for which there is
> an excuse. (Gerald Blidstein in his recent peirush on Hilchos Mamrim
> struggles with it but has no answer)

In fact, Karaites were ahead of Rabbinites in their acceptance of the
unity of G-d, incorporeality and other Ikkarim. The only Ikkar that
they did not accept exactly as the Rambam formulated it is the one on
Sinaitic origin of the Torah and only because the Rambam included Torah
Sheabaal Peh. In fact, eventually they acepted R. Saadia Gaon's argument
that there was an oral tradition given with the Chumash but denied that
it was identical with that of the Rabbanites. (In fact, the Rambam has
a stange lashon when he writes about this. He first states that the
mitzvos that we perform are identical, such as suka, tsitsis and then
he says that the halachos are the same ones given in Sinai).

So I agree with Kellner that Rambam may have accepted some Ikkarim as
principal and others as more secondary. It is also relevant that the
principal of Sinaitic origin of the Torah cannot be derived form pure
reasoning- so how can we consign Karaites to perdition for following
their, albeit more recent, tradition.

M. Levin


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Date: Thu, 27 Mar 2003 15:30:00 GMT
From: Eli Turkel <turkel@post.tau.ac.il>
Subject:
shitat Brisk


a continuation of the article by Eliyakim Krumbein

He considers original shitat Brisk was only concerned with answering 
questions (stirot) or also with more fundamental questions.

It is clear that both RAL and RYBS consider shittat Brisk as 
addressing fundamental questions. However, it is less clear whether 
this is their interpreation due to their own extensions or it is 
inherent in the works of RCS and RYZS.
BTW he mentions in passing that RYZS in particular did not think much 
of the Torah of other talmidim of RCS and insisted that only the 
family were really qualified to continued the work.

A major point stressed here but I have seen in other works is that 
both RCS and RYZS stressed the "how" question and downplayed the 
"why" question. My reading of RYBS (especially as seen in Noraot 
HaRav) is that he was much more interested in the why question than 
his father, uncle and grandfather. I personally attribute this to his 
philosophy background. RAL in his sefer on kodashin begins with a 
discussion of principles which never occurs in the older seforim of 
Brisk.

In particular Krumbein discusses that in the original publication of
Chiddushei R. Chaim there is little beyong a discussion of questions 
and relevant answers. Once having answered the question RCS is 
finished and never uses his principles to further explore the issue.
He interprests statements of the GRIZ to imply that when everything 
is clear there is no purpose in seeking reasons. In contrast he 
brings a discussion by RAL on "lishma - zevachim". RAL makes clear 
that logic is important independent of specific proofs.

Wachtfogel in his book on the Brisker Derech also only considers how 
to answer questions and never advances anything more fundamental.
He gives 3 fundamental steps
1. stripping the problem to its fundamentals
2. Set up a Chaikrah
3, Answer the contradiction

example:
Rambam paskens that someone who has chametz on Pesach gets makot
problem: chametz is a lav hanitak le-aseh (tashbitu) and so does not 
have makot

2. chakirah: does tashbitu say that one needs to destroy chametz or 
else that he should not have chametz in his possesion

3. RCS proves the second alternative is correct. Hence, chametz is 
not "nitak le-aseh" since tashbitu is a prohibition and not a 
positive action.

No hint that the same derech can answer more fundamental questions.

By distinction RYBS discusses the necessity of declaring a fast on 
the minchah immediately before the fast. RYBS asks "why!" is it 
necessary for it to be at Minchah and the previous Shacharit or 
Maariv?
Similarly in other shiurim he asks why indeed why can't one drink 
even water before kiddush (again I personally have many more examples 
from Noraot haRav).

The result is that RYBS in frequently less interested in the wording 
of the text then RCS was. At times the simple meaning is obvious but 
RYBS insists on turning it into a major principle.
example:
(Berachot 49b) in Tosaphot (Amar) (is there something beyond 10 
people?)
R. Yose haGlili agrees in a bet knesset, so why does he argue in 
berchat hamazon and not in shul - because ina shul people walk in and 
out however in berchot hamazon everyone is seated together and so it 
is feasible to discuss a group of 100 or 10,000.
RYBS - in a shul there is nothing to bring them together (mesaref).
However, for birchat hamazon the meal combines them since hasevah 
combines.
From tosaphot it seems there is no fundamental difference between a 
shul and a meal except that physically in a shul people leave in the 
middle. RYBS turns this to a basic philosophic difference between a 
shul and meal.
However, the important point is that all this was done without trying 
to answer any questions.

Another example: Machloket Bet Shamai and Bet Hillel wither the 
Berachah on wine ot the day is first,
RYBS insists that the basic disagreement is whether the berachah of 
wine is a birchat nehenim (then the blessing over the day is first)
or is the berachah over wine a basic ingredient of kiddush.
Again, this explanation is not in response to any question or 
contradiction. However, a bigger question on RYBS is that the gemara 
(berachot 51b) brings reasons for the arguement between bet hillel 
and bet shammai and doesn't mention this one!
Obviously one can try and fir TYBS with the explanations in the 
gemara. However, the basic question is why introduce a new 
explanation when the simple interpretation of the gemara seems to be 
fine.

More generally when RCS introduces a chiddush he examines carefully 
if it fits into the words of the gemara/Rambam. However, for RYBS the 
question was more of an excuse to introduce the answer and he doesn't 
look back
(more examples which we shall skip)

Interesting statistic: Tefillah occupies less than 1% of the content 
of Chiddushei R. Chaim and similarly for RYZS. For RYBS it is a 
substantial portion of his Torah.

Interestingly in his early years RYBS stressed kodashim (see Iggerot 
haGrid) and only later did he stress tefillah as a topic of Brisker 
Torah.

Hence, Krumbein concludes that based on the works of RCS and RYZS 
they were primarily interested in answering specific questions. In 
explaining the what and not the why or fundamental explanations not 
in response to contradictions. It was RYBS and others that extended 
this shittah to more fundamental issues

Ei Turkel,  turkel@post.tau.ac.il on 03/27/2003
Department of Mathematics, Tel Aviv University
  


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