Avodah Mailing List

Volume 12 : Number 070

Monday, January 5 2004

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Sun, 4 Jan 2004 03:04:20 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Pronouncing Het (and other letters)

As I see it, the question is the value to asign a minhag that arose from
a common lack of ability. Ashkenaz doesn't have certain sounds in our
havarah. Notably, none of them exist in the languages of the countries
in which we dwelled. How significant, then, is their omission?

One example that we know was a late dropping is the `ayin, which turned
into a nun in Yiddish in a couple of cases. Or so says my friend Yanky.
So we know the sound is part of our mesorah, and since dropped.

Is continuing such a minhag by someone who /can/ make the sound a case
of dan es ha'efshar memi she'i efshar?

Particularly /dh/, which is familiar to any able-mouthed English speaker.

Gut Voch!

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Date: Sat, 3 Jan 2004 21:58:13 -0500
From: "Moshe & Ilana Sober" <sober@pathcom.com>
halachic convictions

The Ran (Drashot HaRan, #11, mainly the beginning) has an interesting
approach to the problem. I will try to summarize it here, although I am
sure to miss a lot of the nuances.

1) Every nation requires a system of law - otherwise, people would
swallow each other alive.

2) The laws of the Torah are Divine, inherently true and just, and
bring shefa Eloki upon the society that lives by them. They have both
a "chok" aspect (they are inherently good, true, and beneficial even
when the rationale is not evident) and a practical aspect (maintaning
a law-abiding society).

3) The laws of the Torah are not always sufficient to maintain law and
order. If no one could be punished except according to the requirements
of eidim, hasra'ah, etc, we would be overrun by criminals with no fear
of punishment. Therefore, the Torah commands us to appoint a melech,
who has the power to judge without hasra'ah. The Beis Din & Sanhedrin
are the PRIMARY system of justice, which is (a) inherently true and (b)
creates a good, just, law-abiding society. The king is at the head of
a supplementary justice system which can be called on as required to
maintain law and order. For example, the king can convict and execute
criminals when the halachic requirements for evidence can't be fulfilled.

4) Since the king has the power to override certain mitzvot in the Torah,
there are special provisions to ensure that he has proper yirat shamayim,
e.g. his own sefer Torah, l'vilti rum l'vavo.

My apologies if I got anything wrong here, please feel free to correct.

Shavua tov,

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Date: Sun, 4 Jan 2004 02:57:34 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Ramban and geography

On Thu, Jan 01, 2004 at 03:02:05PM +0200, Eli Turkel wrote:
: I am completely confused. According to the Gemara the border between
: Binyamin and Tehudah is Jerusalem with most of the Bet Hamikdash being
: in Binyamin. I assume that means that north of Jerusalem is Binyamin
: and south is Yehuda. Hence, Kever Rachel near Bethlehem is still in
: Yehuda...

: I did not understand what the Ramban meant by the kever being near Bet El.

: Since, this is all based on his personal observations it can not be
: attributed to mistakes about where these locations are.

Which Beis Lechem? You later mention your awareness of the "northern
theory." One of the things proponents of that theory note is that there
were numerous cities with suffient warehouses of food to be called
"Beis Lechem".

For the very reasons you raise, the Ramban could be construed as proof
that in his day, the one known as THE "Beis Lechem" was not the one we
think of today.

Gut Voch!

Micha Berger             The mind is a wonderful organ
micha@aishdas.org        for justifying decisions
http://www.aishdas.org   the heart already reached.
Fax: (413) 403-9905      

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Date: Sun, 04 Jan 2004 10:22:56 +0200
From: "Carl and Adina Sherer" <sherer@actcom.co.il>
Re: Ramban and geography

On 4 Jan 2004 at 2:57, Micha Berger wrote:
> For the very reasons you raise, the Ramban could be construed as proof
> that in his day, the one known as THE "Beis Lechem" was not the one we
> think of today.

Then how do you understand the Ramban at the end of Sefer Dvarim 
(after the Peirush) where he accepts Rashi's view on the location of 
Kever Rachel? 

-- 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: Sun, 4 Jan 2004 09:17:02 -0500
From: "David Riceman" <driceman@worldnet.att.net>
Re: Ramban/Shechinah

From: "Yosef Gavriel & Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <rygb@aishdas.org>
> Always thought like the Rambam that Shechinah is a kavod nivra.

That's actually Saadyah's opinion.  The Rambam tolerates it halfheartedly at

David Riceman

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Date: Sun, 04 Jan 2004 09:35:18 -0500
From: "Yosef Gavriel & Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <rygb@aishdas.org>
Re: Ramban/Shechinah

At 09:17 AM 1/4/2004, David Riceman wrote:
>That's actually Saadyah's opinion.  The Rambam tolerates it halfheartedly at

Why then does the Ramban, who should know these things, attribute it to
the Rambam?


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Date: Sun, 4 Jan 2004 09:43:10 -0500
From: "David Riceman" <driceman@worldnet.att.net>
Re: Mrs Katz's dilemma

From: "Seth Mandel" <sm@aishdas.org>
> it is forbidden to make use of a talmid chochom, presumably because
> of the honor due to his Torah, not because he may or may not hold any
> official position.

I'm unfamiliar with this prohibition (though Rebbitzin Katz mentioned
it near the beginning of this thread). Can you cite a source so that
I can look it up?

David Riceman

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Date: Sun, 04 Jan 2004 07:43:42 +0200
From: Akiva Atwood <akiva@atwood.co.il>
RE: FW: FW: Tzaar Baalei Chayim and Kashrus

>: "No reason?" So why do Chazal allow one to be mevatel a kli on Shabbos
>: to rescue an animal in distress? Or to milk a cow on Shabbos to relieve
>: her distress? Just to teach "middos tovos?"

> Why not? Isn't the teaching of middos tovos central to Yahadus?

Yes -- but to be mechalel Shabbos *just* to teach a midda tov?


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Date: Sun, 4 Jan 2004 15:22:18 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: FW: FW: Tzaar Baalei Chayim and Kashrus

On Sun, Jan 04, 2004 at 07:43:42AM +0200, Akiva Atwood wrote:
:> Why not? Isn't the teaching of middos tovos central to Yahadus?

: Yes -- but to be mechalel Shabbos *just* to teach a midda tov?

On my own say-so, no. But I would have no problem believing that chazal
chose an issur de'oraisa over their own concept of melachah she'einah
tzerichah legufah. Even if the shoresh of the issur is "*just*" to teach
a middah.

Now about that "*just*"... The Gra writes, "Shoresh haAvodah -- Sheviras
haMiddos". If it can be the underlying cause of all of avodas H', why
not Shabbos?


Micha Berger             When you come to a place of darkness,
micha@aishdas.org        you don't 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: Sun, 4 Jan 2004 15:49:46 +0000
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Differences, if any, between Jews and Goyim/Gentiles

R' Steven Brizel <Zeliglaw@aol.com> wrote:
:> There is a well known Gemara in AZ wherein HaShem offered the Torah to all
:> of the nations of the world who rejected it for various reasons. We all
:> know the answer of Klal Yisrael. If there are such inherent differences
:> between Jews and Gentiles, why did HaShem offer the nations of the
:> world the Torah in the first instance ?

: IOW, HaShem engaged in a sham process and knew all along that the nations
: of the world would not accept it? A sort of massive process of elimination
: ala a multiple choice test? How does Bchirah Chafshis and Naaseh vNishma
: work according to this logic?

But what does that have to do about our particular case? Every single
nisayon is equally pointless from the perspective of the One who knows
the future, the One who is Bochein kelayos valeiv. Nisyonos are to force
the person to excercise the middah and to be aware of where they stand.

At yetzi'as Mitzrayim, the mal'achim were perplexed. "Halalu ovdei AZ,
vehalalu ovdei AZ". Apparently there was no qualitative difference that
they could perceive.

Although RYHutner, in Pachad Yitzchoq, writes about two kinds of neis.
Some are a breach of teva for the sake of accomplishing some necessary
end. Others are a change in teva caused by changes in the worlds above
ours. His example of the latter is qeri'as Yam Suf. The Yam Suf split
because the reality it embodied changed. There was a qualitative change
in the nature of Benei Yisrael that caused the split.

This would argue that if there is a qualitative difference in the
individual Jew, it happened after yetzi'as Mitzrayim anyway.

As for bechirah, if every human is betzelem E-lokim, then definitionally
every human has bechirah. The power of bechirah is the tzelem.

But what about hashgachah peratis? Klal Yisrael has no mal'ach, it is
overseen by HQBH biKhvodo ube'Atzmo. It's notable that R' Aharon Kotler
holds that only Klal Yisrael are subject to HP based on this distinction.
In fact, that all of history plays out for the sake of its effect on
us. If his grandson disagrees, it would be worth noting.

BTW, I'm not sure he's including /every/ member, or if it's like "Kol
Yisrael yeish lahem cheileq li'olam haba" followed by a list of members
of the people who lost the title Yisrael for this purpose.

Contrast this to RSRH's notion that the human ideal is the ben Noach, 
and that Yahadus "only" exists because that ideal can't be acheived
without a mamlekhes kohanim anchoring it. (This shtims with his notion
of DE and the role of local culture.)


Micha Berger             When you come to a place of darkness,
micha@aishdas.org        you don't 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: Sun, 4 Jan 2004 09:58:37 -0600 (CST)
From: "Gil Student" <gil@aishdas.org>
Re: Some historical thoughts re Chanuka

I wrote:
>And the Sadducees? Boethusians? Jewish-Christians?
>Talmudic literature is full of references to them,
>most of them unflattering.

It was pointed out to me offlist:
>Correct me if my history is faulty, but the ones you
>mentioned were kofrim of one kind or another, with no
>chelek la'olam habba, while the Hellenists were run-of-
>the-mill ba'alei aveirah; hence the distinction in their
>treatment, according to this shittah.

I think the Hellenists were, generally speaking, ovdei avodah zarah in
order to curry favor with the "Greeks".

RG Blidstein's words are: "One [possibility] is that Hellenism is so
heinous an option that the talmudic tradition cannot admit that it in fact
proved attractive to a significant group of Jews."

I would think that this would apply equally to Hellenism as it does to

The suggestion from RYBS that it was some geder of shemiras ha-lashon not
to speak ill of Jews, I am still not sure why it applies more to resha'im
than epikorsim. Maybe the references to Sadduccees etc. were more factual
than judgemental; they speak more of their halachic positions than their
sins. This might be true in the Mishnah but the Gemara has some pretty bad
stories about Minim.

Gil Student

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Date: Sun, 4 Jan 2004 20:44:13 -0500
From: "David Riceman" <driceman@worldnet.att.net>
Re: Mrs Katz's dilemma

From: "Chana Luntz" <chana@KolSassoon.net>
> However, this whole din is one of kavod.

No, it's one of kedusha; the source is "v'kidashto". Several of us have
made analogies to kavod (I myself made an anology to kavod hamelech,
which is really a din in eima). Obviously I thought the analogy I made
justified, but any such analogy requires independent justification.

> On that
> basis, might it not be argued, just as you have said above, that because
> his wife's honour is his own, his honour is his wife's?

An eishes kohen does get kedusha by marriage; she may, for example,
eat trumah. Her kedusha, however, is not her husband's (she may not,
for example, perform avodah).

David Riceman

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Date: Mon, 5 Jan 2004 00:17:22 -0500
From: "Moshe & Ilana Sober" <sober@pathcom.com>
Mrs. Cohen

"Asur l'hishtamesh bakohen" - how are we defining "mishtamesh"? The
examples I saw in my cursory review of the sources were waiting at
table and pouring water over hands (Yerushalmi & Mordechai cited in
Aruch HaShulchan OC 128:66-67). Normally, this type of service conveys
servility or subordination - the opposite of the type of kavod one should
show to a kohen.

When a husband serves his wife at the table, or pours water over her
hands, he is conveying affection, not servility. That's why they do not
serve each other in this way when she is niddah (YD 195:10-12). (See Aruch
Hachulchan who says explicitly that this is reciprocal.) So presumably
a kohen could do these things for his wife (when she is tehorah).

Unfortunately for Mrs. Cohen, however, the same sources in YD seem to
strengthen the idea that slightly more strenuous types of housework
(preparing food, arranging mattresses, etc) are in fact derech sherut,
and presumably not appropriate for Mr. Cohen without mechilah.

I still have a few questions about the definition of "mishtamesh":

1) Does this apply to general household tasks, or only where one person
specifically serves another? (Taking out the garbage or washing the
dishes are general housework; making her bed or ironing her clothes are
specifically serving her.)

2) I hate to say this, but I'm not sure where in the sources we have a
paradigm of marriage where the wife/husband relationship is analogous
to master/servant, in that order. (Feel free to enlighten me.) So why
should a husband performing general household duties be perceived as
serving his wife (even if the wife IS perceived as serving her husband)?

3) Could the problem lie in the way Mrs. Cohen makes her request? As
long as she does not speak to her husband as she would to a servant,
can she ask him to take care of a household task? (If I were wearing my
kallah-teacher hat, I would say that anything one spouse does for the
other, or requests from the other, should be in the spirit of affection
and respect....)

4) How subjective is the concept of "shimush"? Let's take the example of
driving a person somewhere in a car. Which of the following are shimush?:
a) A chauffeur
b) A cabdriver
c) A parent driving carpool
d) Two co-workers carpooling
e) A driver picking up an ordinary hitch-hiker
f) A driver picking up a talmid chacham

To use an example which has already been cited here: If there are many
cockroaches, and Mr. Cohen the exterminator must be summoned, may I
request that he get rid of them? Can I call Mr. Cohen the landlord and
ask him to fix a leak? How exactly does this differ from asking Mr. Cohen
the husband to step on a cockroach?

People are always doing things for other people, but this is not always
"mishtamesh." Does anyone have a clear definition of "shimush" which
can be applied here?

- Ilana

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Date: Mon, 05 Jan 2004 10:27:43 -0500
From: Mlevinmd@aol.com

> Did the Ramban on Shechinah (46:1) - shiur that normally lasts 45m went
> 1hr overtime! Finally understood that the Tanya means "chelek eloka
> me'ma'al mamash" literally. Always thought like the Rambam that Shechinah
> is a kavod nivra, but I see Ramban strenuously objects (nafka mina to
> daven to Shechinah), and holds Shechinah is not separated from HKB"H,
> that Pnei Hashem is Shechinah, and it can be seen and much more. Needs
> more reflection!

This issue has a long history. Some early Mekubbolim compare it with a
flame which always remains connected even as it extends.

Sheckhina is Malchus. BYTW, R. Saadia Gaon in Emunos VDeos was the
first to suggest that Divine is present within the corporeal world. I
remember it being quoted as the source for the Besht's ideas on this
question. Once you separate it, it can become a separate divinity -
which is what happened in the theology of Avraham Miguel Cardoza, a
Sabbatean sympathizer and fellow traveler and after with other Sabbateans
and Jacob Frank. It is not normative Judaism. Cardozo worshipped the
shekhina. They ended up by having a trinity that included tiferes,
malchus and the Source.

A biography and selections of Cardozo was published by David J. Halperin -

I may be wrong but it seems to me that the same issue is again in the
center of discussion whether a human being can be filled by Divinity but
remain connected so that one who worships him, does not commit the sin
of avodah zarah for he worships the divine within. Such an explanation
has been offered by some fringe radicals in our time but, fortunately,
disavowed by the leaders of the group. This relates to the whole issue of
incarnation, which literally means spirit within flesh (to my knowledge
the only one who accepted this possibility as ligitimate is R. Bachya in
the beginning of Vayeira). The pity is that such ideas have long been read
out of Judaism but still every once in a while resurface and are accepted
but those ignorant of the intellectual history of this whole issue.

My apologies for what may be a disturbing post but I wanted to give
wider scope to RYGB comment above.

M. Levin

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Date: Mon, 05 Jan 2004 19:36:22 +0200
From: Daniel Eidensohn <yadmoshe@012.net.il>
Final redemption requires a suffering tzadik?

I found this in R' Aryeh Kaplan's transation of Derech HaShem. He did not
provide any source for the statement in the second part of the paragraph -
any suggestions?

Ramchal(Derech HaShem 2:3:8):Those who cause others to partake in the
World to Come will definitely be the foremost in that Community. They
will be the leaders, while those who enter by virtue of their
association with them will be beholden and dependent on them. In order
for this to be possible, all men were originally bound to each other, as
our sages teach us, „All Israel are responsible for one another." 32 As
a result of this, each individual is bound to everyone else, and no man
is counted separately. God's attribute of good is the stronger, however,
and if the guilt for sin is shared by others, this must certainly be
true of the merit associated with good deeds. As a result of this
principle, suffering and pain may be imposed on a Tzadik (righteous
person) as an atonement for his entire generation.33 This Tzadik must
then accept this suffering with love for the benefit of his generation,
just as he accepts the suffering imposed upon him for his own sake. In
doing so, he benefits his generation by atoning for it, and at the same
time is himself elevated to a very great degree. For a Tzadik such as
this is made into one of the leaders in the Community of the Future
World, as discussed earlier. All this involves a Tzadik who is stricken
because his generation is about to be annihilated, and would be
destroyed if not for his suffering. In atoning for them through his
suffering, this Tzadik saves them in this world and greatly benefits
them in the Warld to Come. Within this same category, however, there is
a class that is even higher than this. There is suffering that comes to
a Tzadik who is even greater and more highly perfected than the ones
discussed above. This suffering comes to provide the help necessary to
bring about the chain of events leading to mankind's ultimate
perfection. According to the original plan, the sequence of worldly
events required that man undergo at least some suffering before both he
and the world could attain perfection. This was required by the very
fact that one of the basic concepts of man's predicament was that God
should hold back His Light and hide His presence, as discussed
earlier.34 This became all the more necessary as a result of the
corruption and spiritual damage caused by man's many sins, which held
the good back even more and caused God's presence to become all the more
hidden. The world and everything in it are therefore in a degraded evil
state, and require that God's unfathomable wisdom bring about numerous
chains of events to achieve their rectification.

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Date: Mon, 05 Jan 2004 12:26:07 -0500
From: Mlevinmd@aol.com
Re: Differences, if any, between Jews and goyim

[Rn Toby Katz:]
> 3. Many Jews are not particularly good people, some are unethical and
> some are downright criminals. Nevertheless as a broad predictor the
> rule of "rachmanim bayshanim gomlei chasadim" remains remarkably true
> across the spectrum of Jews, including those who are least Jewishly
> knowledgeable or observant. And goyim who share these quissentially
> Jewish midos often find themselves powerfully attracted to Jews. To join
> them, or to marry them.

I would suggest the following moshol.

When diamonds are first mined and taken out of the ground, they are dirty,
rough and otehrwise indistinguishable from other pebles that surround
them. With proper care and polishing , however, they can reach the state
that is not possible for those pebbles to acquire.

The nimshal is that bnei yisroel have the capacity for spiritual
achievement that is in-potencia but not developed. "When will my
actions reach the actions of Avraham, Yitshak and Yakov?" There is,
takeh, no difference between pebbles, as long as they remain soiled and
rough. That is what we often see around us. However, with proper care,
they can shine whereas the others cannot. That we see only occasionally.

Of course, we have to realize how high the bar for the differences to
become apparent. Think of the Chofets Chaim etc.

M. Levin

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Date: Mon, 5 Jan 2004 08:58:48 +0200
From: Eli Turkel <turkel@post.tau.ac.il>

R. Herschel Schacter spoke in our shul last night and I asked him 
about Chanuka. He reconfirmed that according to his opinion if the 
husband is not coming home that night then he has to light his own 
candles whereever he is. I specifically asked about whether a soldier 
in the field could rely on his wife/parents and he said no. He 
admitted that it was not the generally accepted opinion.

One thing he said in the shiur (on when thing are mutar on shabbat) 
was hotly debated and I couldn't dind anyone who agreed with him.

Recently there was a blizzard in NY on a friday and many people could 
not make it home for shabbat. RHS personally 2 hours to get to 
Einstein from his home in Washington Hts when the 20 minute drive 
turned out being stuck in traffic.
He mentioned that many other people were on the way to Monsey or 
Lakewood and had more serious problems.

His psak was that someone in that situation had an additional 25 
minutes of bein hashamiashot after shkiah to continue in the bus.
After that time nly if there were small children in the bus and the 
driver was not Jewish could they continue. Otherwise it was required 
to get out and walk.

Everyone else felt that to leave a bus on the NJ turnpike or the road 
up to Monsey without carrying any money or identification in a 
blizzard on a friday night was pikuach nefesh. No hotel would accept 
such people and even for a healthy adult to be out all night in such 
circumstances is unacceptable.

Prof. Eli Turkel,  turkel@post.tau.ac.il on 05/01/2004
Department of Mathematics, Tel Aviv University

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Date: Mon, 5 Jan 2004 11:40:31 +0200
From: Eli Turkel <turkel@post.tau.ac.il>
RYBS conference

I attended about half the recent conference in the VanLeer Institute in
Jerusalem on Rav Soloveitchik.

They said that the video proceedings would be on their (or Edah) web site
in about 1-2 weeks. They are also planning on a book of the proceedings
but that will take a while. They may also have some preliminary material
on their website.

It is too much to summarize many hours of talks and so I will only include
a few remarks of general interest from various speakers. Most of the
speakers were academics.

1. There was a discussion of what is bechirah chofshit - the view
was presented that this is not complete freedom, man has various
physical and psychological constraints. Thus, most of us are not
capable of murder. Also an angel is not a robot and also has bechirah
chofshit. However, because of his spiritual level he always chooses
good. RYBS indicates that man has the ability to completely change
himself it is not clear if Rambam also agrees. Discussion of chapter 7
and chapter 10 in Hilchot Teshuva which RYBS describes as a different
type of teshuva not everyone agrees.

2. Most important Jewish philosophers in US of recent times were Heschel
and RYBS. Both talked about tefillah and Chagim/Shabbat.

3. Session on dialogue with catholic church. There was an interested
gentile there who did his PhD thesis on RYBS and confrontation. He
indicated he was most interested in RYBS because he represented authentic
Judaism rather than Conservative or Reform Jews. He pointed out much in
common between Jews and Jesuits including persecution for their views.

Eugene Korn argued that RYBS was not against dialogue but set
conditions. He furthered felt that because of changes in the last 40
years there is much more in common now between Judaism and Catholocism
especially reaction to fundamentalism. Many (not all) in the church have
given up on conversion of Jews. Also within the 40 years the church has
recognized the state of Israel which RYBS noted they refused for many
years more on ideological grounds rather than pragmatic grounds. In
private conservations later he felt that in fact rught wing protestants
were a much greater danger in spite (or maybe because) of their support
of Israel. One person indicated that when the settlers receive money from
RW protestants they know very well why the contributions are coming and
make that clear they know the background.

4. Another speaker showed close relationships between the philosophy of
RYBS and that of Bromer and other students of Hermann Cohen. So while
arguing against diagolue with the church RYBS felt there was no problem
in using the philosophy of religious Xtian philosophers.

The speaker took out of the YU library a book by Bromer. The last one
who had taken the book out was RAL in 1957!

5. R. Chaim Zimmerman once remarked that anyone who is still religious
after 1 year of college is either a genius or an idiot. A genius that
he refuted the arguments or an idiot for not listening.

As a child Rambam was not close to his father because his father though he
was not very bright. Recently a number of RW talmidim have been trying to
push down the level of Chiddush in RYBS. It is possible that he himself
did not realize how different he was from other Briskers.

6. There was a discussion for the reasons that in spite of his litvishe
background that RYBS told so many personal stories about himself. As
remarked he would tell things to 1000 people in Lmaport auditorium
that he would not mention at home. One theory was that he did this
for educational purposes. RYBS writes that he transmits his knowledge
to his students but not his feelings to Yiddishkeit. This was his way
of transmitting feelings. Others felt that the stories had a deeper
rationale than just education.

7. There was much talk of post-modernism and what RYBS reaction would
be. It was never defined but it was clear that much of post-modernism
deals with pluralism and relativism. The concept that my religion or
viewpoint is good for me while you may have a legitimate alternative.
This goes beyond mere tolerance for other views based on the common good.

Also RYBS downplayed history and historical influences on halachah
(though one speaker attempted to temper that view of RYBS). Hence, if
one of the challenges to the O Jew in a university is the historical
challenges there was a debate if RYBS has any relevance to such a student.

8. The final talks were given by R. Greenberg (video conference) and Tova
Lichtenstein. R. Greenberg again stressed the need for pluralism and
strongly objected to the attempts in Israel to block the conservative
and reform movements. He claimed based on R. Soloveitchik's openness
to talks with Conservative rabbis that RYBS would back his approach. In
any case the opposition to conservative/reform causes a chillul Hashem.

Tova in her talk stressed that her father was mainly an educator who
was proud of his Judaism and strongly objected to those that tried to
hide their beliefs within the home. If not for RYBS many/most of MO Jews
today would be in the conservative camp.

In the discussion period R. Chaim Waxman challenged R. Greenberg mainly
based on RYBS's psak that it is better to not hear shofar rather than
hear it in a conservative shul. R. Greenberg answered that he thought that
psak itself was horrible and he was using the spirit of RYBS rather than
a specific psak. Furthermore, it was the job of a talmid to go beyond
and extend his rebbe's views.

Tova in her response very strongly disagreed with R. Greenberg. She
stressed that her father would never agree to any pluralism. Dealing
respectfully - yes but not acceptance of non-orthodox viewpoints as
legitimate. She was aked why as a daughter she did not say anything about
family life - for example did her father learn with her. She responded
that as RYBS's daughter her father would expect her to talk about his
accomplishments and not there personal relationship.

I understood there was a lively debate the evening before with R.
Sherlo but I will have to wait for the internet videos for that.

kol tuv,
Eli Turkel
Department of Mathematics, Tel Aviv University

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Date: Mon, 5 Jan 2004 09:16:14 -0500
From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@juno.com>
10 Teves doche Shabbos

I've heard it said that if 10 Teves could come out on Shabbos it would
be doche Shabbos.

Is this true, what are the sources and explanation? If not, whence
this idea?


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Date: Mon, January 5, 2004 10:40 am
From: Joelirich@aol.com
Secular Law in the Torah State

[Forwaded from Areivim. Title mine. -mi]

In a message dated 1/5/2004 10:07:59 AM EST, micha@aishdas.org writes:
> I believe that's why Sanhedrin lokin shelo kedin and they
> maintained a kippah. They had the power to punish even when there
> was no chiyuv to punish.

Interesting question is how and when did the Sanhedrin get this
power and  how, if at all, did it coordinate with the melech's power
to maintain social  order? The Maharatz chiyut writes about the
powers but it's never been clear to me  how they interacted.

Joel Rich

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