Avodah Mailing List

Volume 17 : Number 018

Sunday, April 23 2006

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Sat, 22 Apr 2006 22:04:14 +0200
From: "Yisrael Medad" <yisrael.medad@gmail.com>
Korban Pesach

Regarding Rafi Goldmeier's queries, since this entire generation of
Rabbinical personalities has rejected any pro-active position or policy
regarding anything to do with the Beit Mikdash, its service and the Har
Habayit in general, from the Chief Rabbinate on down, excluding some
from important and significant figures, some who were less effectual
when they had the clout to do something and were more outspoken when
they were on the 'outs', his questions are a bit moot.

As for leaving Jerusalem erev chag, if I am not mistaken, the custom
is *davka* to come to the Kotel to say the Amirot of the Korban Pesach
that day.

Yisrael Medad

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Date: Sat, 22 Apr 2006 21:50:28 -0400
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: A Sefer Torah Presently Located in a Reform Temple

On Fri, Apr 21, 2006 at 01:59:19PM +0200, Daniel Eidensohn wrote:
:> I am aware of the following circumstances:
:> An Orthodox Shul lent a Sefer Torah to a Reform Temple about 60 years ago.
:> attempt to retrieve it or whether its use (misuse?) (abuse?) - such as
:> being read by a female Reform Rabbi - has put its status somehow beyond
:> the pale.

: Igros Moshe YD I # 174 page 347 discusses selling a Sefer Torah to a
: non observant Conservative Shul. He permits selling a new one since it
: will be treated with respect but not one that is currently being used
: by observant Jews since the change of use is degrading. He does not
: deal with the issue of abuse.

In the days from which IM YD 1 was collected, it was highly unlikely
that a Torah reader in a C synagogue (or even an R one) would ever be
anything but a bar chiyuvah. Not much "abuse".

Today's R, where many readers are women, and many accepted as Jews aren't
Jewish al pi halakhah, is arguably a new parashah.

Gut Voch!

Micha Berger             Today is the 9th day, which is
micha@aishdas.org        1 week and 2 days in/toward the omer.
http://www.aishdas.org   Gevurah sheb'Gevurah: When is strict justice
Fax: (270) 514-1507                            most appropriate?

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Date: Sat, 22 Apr 2006 23:03:19 -0400
From: Zev Sero <zev@sero.name>
Re: V'imru Amen in shmoneh esrei

Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org> wrote:
>: Amen as an ending was used at the end of sections of prayer. Among
>: Ashkenazim, except for boneh Yerushalayim in birkat hamazon, they have
>: died out. Sefaradim have preserved some...

> I thought only for the conclusion of strings of berakhos hasemuchot
> lechavertot.


Zev Sero

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Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 03:17:35 GMT
From: "kennethgmiller@juno.com" <kennethgmiller@juno.com>
RE: preparing for the second seder

R' Simcha Coffer wrote:
> ... hachana and machshich al hatechum are different
> halachos. Machshich is assur midivrei sofrim because
> of mimtzo cheftzicha. Hachana is assur because... I
> don't remember but it's not mimtzo cheftzicha.

You're skirting what I think is the main issue: Why isn't mashchich
included in hachana?

The act of walking to the edge of the techum is something which would
not have been done except for the need to be there after Shabbos. It
is not like sleeping on Shabbos to be awake on Motzaei Shabbos, since a
nap is a normal Shabbos activity anyway, and (if one avoids stating the
reason for the nap) the only difference is mental. But although walking
is indeed a normal Shabbos activity, I'd think that a walk all the way
to the edge of the techum is unnaturally long, and easily noticable as
a maaseh hachana. Why isn't it?

Akiva Miller

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Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 00:01:00 -0400
From: Zev Sero <zev@sero.name>
Re: Seventh Day of Pesach on Friday

ephraim.stulberg@utoronto.ca wrote:
> At lunch yesterday, we were discussing what happens in Israel when
> the seventh, and final, day of Pesach is on Friday (in Galut it is
> impossible for Pesach to end on a Friday). How do they get bread for
> lechem mishneh? It seems to me that there are a number of possibilities,
> each of them problematic:
> [...]
> 2) (Re)Acquire bread from a gentile on Shabbat. There are certainly
> permissible ways of doing this, but my local supermarket is less than
> keen on the idea.

I'm not sure how the supermarket could help, even if it were keen
on the idea. But here's an idea: arrange with the goy who buys the
chametz, and who intends to sell it back after shabbat, that he gives the
sellers permission to dip into his stock and take whatever they like,
on the understanding that the final price he will be paid will include
what was taken while it was his. This is the same as eating something
while standing in queue at the supermarket, with the owner's express or
implied permission.

Indeed, I would say that this is permitted even if no explicit arrangement
has been made, since anan sahadi that the goy is not makpid. So long as
he ends up with the same amount of money in the end, why should he care
what happens to his stock? As far as he's concerned, we're welcome to dip
into it on Pesach as well. The only reason we can't eat it on Pesach is
not gezel hagoy, but that there's no "lecha" on the issur achila, so it
applies even to chametz that doesn't belong to us. Once Pesach is over,
there's no more issur achila, and if the owner is not makpid there's no
issur gezel, so we can take it even before it has been bought back.

The same would, of course, apply every year, both in EY and in Chu"l.
It is customary, at least in my experience, to announce that nobody
should eat the sold chametz until a specified time, which is well
after yomtov is over, in order to give the rav time to buy it back.
It seems to me that these announcements are incorrect, and one may eat
the chametz immediately.

Thus far for lechem mishneh. As far as kitniyot are concerned, it seems
to me that it ought to be permitted to cook them on Erev Shabbat, based on
the same ha`arama which allows us to cook ordinary food. If we pretend
that we are worried about a horde of hungry bochurim descending on us 10
minutes before candlelighting, expecting to be fed, we may as well say
that those bochurim might be Sefardim. If an Ashkenazi is permitted to
cook kitniyot on yomtov for a Sefardi (and I see no reason why it should
not be), then this should work.

Zev Sero

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Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 15:12:17 +0200
From: "reuven koss" <kmr5@zahav.net.il>
Re: Seventh Day of Pesach on Friday

From: ephraim.stulberg@utoronto.ca
> At lunch yesterday, we were discussing what happens in Israel when
> the seventh, and final, day of Pesach is on Friday ...

> 1) Eat matzo. The issues here are twofold. Firstly, there is an issue of
> quasi-bal tosif. Regarding sukkot, the gemara and S.A discuss a case of
> someone who is unable to relocate from his sukka following the last day of
> sukkot. We require him to make some sort of change in his sukka...
> As well, my sister-in-law pointed out that Sefaradim do not recite
> hamotzee on matza outside of Pesach...

> 2) (Re)Acquire bread from a gentile on Shabbat. There are certainly
> permissible ways of doing this, but my local supermarket is less than
> keen on the idea.

one- there is no bal tosif, in the beis hamikdash, they ate matzos year
round,. regarding sefaradim- why should they not make haotzi if they
are being kovea seuda, i know i will be shot down but i heard from the
local rov here who asked R'Ovadia about matziot and R' Ovadia answered
that since today it is normal to eat them, then the bracha is hamotzi.

regarding two, how is one supposed to get bread in a town or city which
is totally jewish, and a lot of people over here do not eat pas palter.

the last time it happened was a few years ago but we always ate matzos. i
was once at a sholom zochor and there were no arbis... it is an 8th
day of pesach


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Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 01:07:09 -0400
From: "S & R Coffer" <rivkyc@sympatico.ca>
RE: A Sefer Torah Presently Located in a Reform Temple

On Aprill 22, 2006, Micha Berger wrote:
> In the days from which IM YD 1 was collected, it was highly unlikely
> that a Torah reader in a C synagogue (or even an R one) would ever be
> anything but a bar chiyuvah. Not much "abuse".


I'm not sure where you are getting your information from but R temples
were always populated by michaleley Shabbos non-practicing Jews. In
fact, in some cases, the Rabbis are even atheists and in some cases
even mishkav zacharniks l'a. R Judaism, now and in the time of R' Moshe,
has always been a travesty of Yiddishkeit.

R' Moshe has many teshuvos about this. (I've translated several selections
from IM in a colloquial style leaving many Hebrew words intact)

See for instance O'C 2:50 "it seems clear to me that even were he (C or
R Rabbi) to make the appropriate bracha and not be mafsik between the
bracha and the achila, since he is a kofer baShem and His Torah like the
majority of them are, the mentioning of Hashem's name [in the bracha]
is merely a mundane utterance without any intention of associating it
to Hashem and thus it doesn't have the shem of a bracha at all...etc."

E'H 1:138 - And therefore those who have studied in C seminaries and
practice as Rabbis in their synagogues and their shita is to be mivatel
and mizalzel in many dinei Torah, which comes from a kefira in Torah
min haShamayim, they definitely have the din of an apikorus regarding
this din (pasul li'eydus) etc.

As far as a non-rabbinical Jew who is a michalel Shabbos b'farhesya,
as all of the congregants in R temples and the vast majority in C are,
R' Moshe writes as follows:

O'C 3:22 - Behold, in reference to calling up to the Torah one who
is a michalel Shabbos bi'farhesya (MSB) and one who denies the Torah
and the like, it is pashut that we should not honor wicked people even
when there is a need...However, we can differentiate in the severity,
for if he is a kofer baTorah, it is an absolute issur, for his bracha
is not considered a bracha...and amen should not be answered on his
bracha...and the same applies to a stam MSB that one can assume that he
is a kofer b'maaseh bereishis and he has the din of goy...however, if
it is known that his chilul Shabbos is merely l'tayavon (i.e. he feels
that he will lose his parnasa etc.) like for instance if he davens and
puts on tefilin, his bracha is a bracha and one should answer amen after
it...and although regarding everything else such as his shechita and his
wine there is no distinction because after all he is a MSB and thus he
is like a goy although he keeps other mitzvos, however, regarding his
bracha it is different ...etc.

Some time ago, I got into a debate with RYGB about the sugya of tinok
shenishba. He outlined several poskim that were apparently maikil in
this inyan and although I a) didn't agree with his presentation and b)
felt that the mikoros he brought down did not address the issue at hand,
I chose not to respond because his approach amounted to a limud zechus
on klal Yisroel. However, this post is specifically about R' Moshe's
shita regarding R, C, and MSB. I believe the mikoros I outlined make
his shita in these inyanim quite clear and demonstrate that R' Moshe,
even in his time, would not adopt RMB's position that "it was highly
unlikely that a Torah reader in a C synagogue (or even an R one) would
ever be anything but a bar chiyuvah. Not much "abuse". These people may
be bar cheyuva but that doesn't mitigate the abuse and in fact would seem
to intensify it. Why R' Moshe allowed the sale of a sefer torah to a C
shul is a bazundera shayla but to me it seems pashut that any R rabbi,
and many C rabbis who routinely lead the services in these shuls and
often times read the Torah too constitute an abuse of the sefer Torah.

Simcha Coffer

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Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 10:18:19
From: "Dr. Josh Backon" <backon@vms.huji.ac.il>
Re: A Sefer Torah Presently Located in a Reform Temple

R. David J Havin asked:
>An Orthodox Shul lent a Sefer Torah to a Reform Temple about 60 years ago.
>Leaving aside all questions of ownership, gift or adverse possession,
>I am interested in finding any discussion in Responsa or other Rabbinic
>literature that may touch on whether it is an Halachic imperative to
>attempt to retrieve it or whether its use (misuse?) (abuse?) - such as
>being read by a female Reform Rabbi - has put its status somehow beyond
>the pale.

Before I get to the halachic aspects, let me preface my comments by my
reaction to a recent TV documentary in Israel on a Reform summer camp in
the USA (Starlite ?? lake ?). I was shocked to see a female in shorts do
"kriyat haTorah". Sorry for the pun but after seeing this I wanted to
do real KRIYA on my shirt.

A Sefer Torah written by a gentile is hidden; that written by a Jewish
APIKORUS [according to the Rambam only one written by a MIN] is to be
burnt (see: gemara in Gittin 45b; Gilyon Meharsha YOREH DEAH 281 s"k 1
d"h apikorus, where the meaning is "anyone who doesn't believe in Torah
she'be'al peh"; Tosafot there d"h sifrei, where the meaning is a Torah
FOUND [rather than written] on the premises of a MIN; Rambam Hilchot
Tefillin 1:13; Machaneh Efraim YOREH DEAH Hilchot Sefer Torah)

BTW note that the Gilyon Meharsha YD 281 s"k 1 would say that a Torah
written by a Jew who doesn't believe in Torah she'be'al Peh would be
burnt; more intriguing is the opinion of the Tosafot Shabbat 116a d"h
sifrei minin who would think that a kosher Torah FOUND on the premises
of a Jew who doesn't believe in Torah she'be'al Peh is also burnt.


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Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 10:48:00 -0400
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: A Sefer Torah Presently Located in a Reform Temple

On Sun, Apr 23, 2006 at 01:07:09AM -0400, S & R Coffer wrote:
: On Aprill 22, 2006, Micha Berger wrote:
:> In the days from which IM YD 1 was collected, it was highly unlikely
:> that a Torah reader in a C synagogue (or even an R one) would ever be
:> anything but a bar chiyuvah. Not much "abuse".

: ?????

: I'm not sure where you are getting your information from but R temples
: were always populated by michaleley Shabbos non-practicing Jews..

I don't think you understood my point.

But still, people mechuyavim in mitzvos, including qeri'as haTorah. Back
when RMF wrote permitting selling a seifer Torah to an R Temple, it
was when the Torah was being used to allow people who were obligated to
hear leining hear it. At least, those who were hearing the ba'al qeri'ah
rather than the PA system.

Now, however, C's contemporary situation is one that includes a majority
of readers that are women, and a sizable population -- including potential
readers -- who are not Jewish lehalakhah.

So, whereas RMF may have been considering the desiratum of allowing people
who will be in the Temple either way to be yotz'im qeri'as haTorah, that's
much less of a factor now.


Micha Berger             Today is the 10th day, which is
micha@aishdas.org        1 week and 3 days in/toward the omer.
http://www.aishdas.org   Tifferes sheb'Gevurah: When does strict
Fax: (270) 514-1507                  judgment bring balance and harmony?

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Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 03:38:15 GMT
From: "Elazar M. Teitz" <remt@juno.com>
Re: Aruch Hashulchan vs. Mishna Berura

Does anyone have any evidence to support the claim that there was a
concerted effort by roshei yeshiva (or, in one version, by the Chazon
Ish and R. Aharon Kotler) post-WWII to establish the supremacy of the MB?
I started attending yeshivos g'dolos in 1950 (Telshe, Ponevez, Ner Israel)
and saw no evidence of such an effort. On the other hand, my father z"l
mentioned the ubiquity of the MB, and its wide acceptance (at least in
Lita) as a source for p'sak, even before the Chafetz Chaim's p'tirah
in 1933.

(A cute story in this regard: the CC and R. Naftoli Trop were engaged in
a discussion in the beis medrash in Radin, when a bochur came to the CC
and asked a shaila in Orach Chaim. The CC said, "Ask the rosh yeshiva,"
to which Reb Naftoli responded, "Yes, ask me. Bring a Mishna B'rurah
and we'll see what the halacha is.")


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Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 01:44:24 -0400
From: Zev Sero <zev@sero.name>
Re: Mishmeres Sholom

In Avodah vol 1 #42, on Tue, 8 Sep 1998 09:51:19 -0500, R Eliezer Appleton
<eappleto@cccis.com> wrote:
> Last night at Rabbi Shmuel Fuerst's halacha shiur, he mentioned that both
> R' Moshe and R' Ovadia Yosef speak strongly in teshuvos against the
> practice of saying selichos before midnight. However, he did mention that
> the 'Mishmeres Shalom' permits it.
> Any idea who the 'Mishmeres Shalom' was?

A search at <http://www.aishdas.org/search.cgi> did not reveal any
subsequent answer, so I assume it has gone unanswered for the past
7.5 years.

The Mishmeres Sholom was the rav of Brahin, my zeide z"l's home village,
and my zeide remembered him and often referred to him. Brahin is about
50 km north of Chernobyl, so most of the Jews there were Chernobyler
chassidim, but the rav was the brother of the Koidenover Rebbe. His
sefer is on halacha, and is quite thin.

Zev Sero

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Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 09:17:00 +0200
From: "Eli Turkel" <eliturkel@gmail.com>
mishum eivah

Moshe brought down the concept of mishum eivah as applying to chilonim.
My question is whether there is such a concept with regard to other Jews.
RSZA applies a similar concept but only with regard to the issur of
lifnei iver. His logic is that lifnei iver is to prevent another Jew
from doing a sin. If in this the process one causes him to hate one has
just replaced one sin with another. Hence, he concludes that lifneu iver
doesnt apply when it will cause hatred.

The gemara has numerous gezerot against am haaretz and doesnt seem to be
concerned with eivah. There is the famous gemara about how much R. Akiva
hated talmidei chachamim when he was an am haaretz. Presumably this was
a common feeling. Does anyone know of a heter to allow a rabbinical
prohibition in shabbat (for example) because of possible eivah from
other Jews?

kol tuv
Eli Turkel

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Date: Sat, 22 Apr 2006 21:51:27 -0700 (PDT)
From: velvel gurkow <velvelg@yahoo.com>
Compurer Sheimos

Is there any reason why not to delete Sheimos from the computer? How
about printing out a copy and burying that with the Sheimos, and then
deleting the file?

  Velvel Montrealer

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Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 10:58:09 -0400
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Compurer Sheimos

On Sat, Apr 22, 2006 at 09:51:27PM -0700, velvel gurkow wrote:
: Is there any reason why not to delete Sheimos from the computer? How
: about printing out a copy and burying that with the Sheimos, and then
: deleting the file?

Sheimos off the screen lack any tzuras ha'os.

On the screen, they are on a transitory medium. The classical case is
erasing a sheim found on the beach below the high tide line. Since it's
inherently transitory, it's mutar.

When I spoke to RDLifshitz about it, we discussed the fact that computer
screens (in those days, CRTs were the only option) are constantly
refreshed -- 50 or 60 times a second. So in a sense one is preventing
a redraw, not erasing. RML, kedarko, said the process was invisible,
and therefore not halachically significant.

And besides, the assumption doesn't hold with LCD screens.


Micha Berger             Today is the 10th day, which is
micha@aishdas.org        1 week and 3 days in/toward the omer.
http://www.aishdas.org   Tifferes sheb'Gevurah: When does strict
Fax: (270) 514-1507                  judgment bring balance and harmony?

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Date: Mon, 24 Apr 2006 01:09:12 +1000
From: "meir rabi" <meirabi@optusnet.com.au>
mevushal wines

Thanks for the responses Rabbosay, however the Q remains unanswered;
whatever the authority considers to be mevushal should allow them to
indicate that it is mevushal. Indicating that it may be treated like
mevushal sounds like they are using a different approach that has,
in the eyes of halacha, equal status to mevushal.

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Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 02:10:22 -0500
From: Chana Luntz <chana@kolsassoon.org.uk>
Bracha on Pizza (was: Mezonot Bread)

> R' Simcha Coffer wrote:
>> Because rov acharonim don't pasken like him and therefore,
>> *l'halacha*, you can't follow his shita. We had a similar 
>>discussion regarding hashkafic issues many times here on Avodah. I 
>>mentioned the CS regarding the shita of Hillel that mashiach  is not a 
>> man. His shita was rejected by most amoraim and thus, *l'halacha*,
>> it has no standing.

R' Jacob Farkas wrote:
> 2. Assuming that the  Taz is a Da'as Yahid, his P'saq,
> intentionally or otherwise has  near universal following. 
> Unlike an individual who wishes to  accept minority opinions 
> that have no Mesorah in practice (for  Qulo purposes), in this 
> case the Minhag is widespread. Pizza is  not a new food that 
> hit the market, and the test of time has seen  Yidden accept 
> this Halakha (as Taz understood it). On paper, the  text may 
> point to one possibility, but practice has and will  continue 
> to accept another.

Firstly, thank you both for giving me a fascinating last days pesach
learning subject. I was a bit short on topics, and this turned out to
be an absolute gem.

Basically, I went for a wander through the Sde Chemed bearing the
question in mind. The index references in the Sde Chemed that I then
looked at read as follows:
    "In a matter in which there is a machlokus between yachid and
    rabbim in a matter of an issur d'rabbanan and the yachid is the
    makil and the people are acustomed (nahagu ha'am) like the yachid
    do we leave them with their custom since there is to them on whom
    to rely being the yachid or if we say that since the halacha is not
    like a yachid we do not allow them remain in their custom (index
    reference to chelek daled, commencing on page 87 through to 93) and
    if there is permission in Eretz Yisroel to excomunicate on this if
    this yachid is not their Rav ma'arah d'atra there, and on this is
    further written whether the same is if the effect is to nullify a
    mitzvah d'rabbanan (p94)."

And then:
    "If there is a machlokus in one din and the yachid is makil and they
    are accustomed in a certain place to go according to his reasoning
    because he is their Rav or because the chachamim of that place it
    is according to their daas that they should remain with the custom
    even if it is an issur Torah (see there p94 and the teshuva of the
    Rivash 88, p90, 93, 106, 107.)"

And then:
    "even those who hold that for a minhag where there is a doubt [pikpuk]
    of issur d'rabbanan if there is in favour of the custom on whom to
    rely even if it is the reasoning of a yachid we do not nullify the
    minhag agree that if there is a doubt of an issur torah we do not
    leave the minhag even if the minhag has on whom to rely (there p89)."

And then - there were are whole host of index references to the statement
in the Yerushalmi that "minhag mevatel halacha" and whether this applies
only in the case of dinei mamonos or even dinei issur v'heter, and if
to issur v'heter is this only to an issur d'rabbanan or even to an issur
Torah, and whether this statement applies davka in matters of being mekil
or even in matters of being machmir which is generally discussed from
p90 to 100 plus in chelek daled - but which is only sort of on point.

Obviously the Sde Chemed would not need the number of pages he does on
this matter if this was a straightforward question.

It would seem that the starting off point is a rather inconclusive
gemora on Rosh Hashana 15b. Basically there the gemora is discussing
the question as to whether one should take ma'aser on the fruit of
trees which sprout before Tu Bishvat but which are picked after Tu
Bishvat in the previous or following year (one of the differences being
whether if between a second and third year, they go for ma'aser sheni or
ma'aser oni). The Rabbanan say that if they sprout before Tu Bishvat,
they are ma'asered as part of the previous year, while Rav Nechemya
(the daas yachid) says that this is only true for trees that have fruit
which are picked at two or more times a year, but trees like palms and
olives and carobs whose fruit are all picked at one time are ma'asered
in the year they are picked. And Rav Yochanan states that the people
were accustomed [nahagu ha'am] by carob trees like Rav Nechemya.

So far it would seem, so clear.

But then Resh Lakish objected to Rav Yochanan from a din of white figs
in shmitta where we clearly go after the sprouting even when they are
picked at one time, and Rav Yochanan was silent. So Rav Aba haCohen
asked Rav Yosi HaCohen why Rav Yochanan was silent - why didn't he
say that he was quoting according to Rav Nechemya and you [Resh Lakis]
are bringing a din from elsewhere that follows the Rabanan? So Rav Yosi
responds, because that would seem to be saying that one can uproot the
Rabbanan (ie the majority) and go according to Rav Nechemya. So why
didn't he say, I am telling you what the people are doing (ie behaving
like Rav Nechemya), and you are talking to me about issur (that is,
what the halacha actually is)? Response: Because he would have said
to him in a place of issur do we let the people remain in their custom
[ie without protesting]. But let him [rav Yochanan] say, I am talking
about taking ma'aser from carob trees which is a d'rabbanan and you are
talking about shmita d'orisa. Rather Rav Aba HaCohen wonderd on whether
Resh Lakish really asked the question, but is assured that he did indeed
ask it. Rather, he wondered as to whether Rabbi Yohanan accepted it
[the question] from Resh Lekish or not {ie, as Rashi explains was Rav
Yochanan silent because he did not know how to answer Resh Lakish or
because he felt the question was not a question as he was discussing
a d'rabbanan and Resh Lakish was referring to chumras of d'orisas).

And, of course, which reason one ultimately attributes to Rabbi Yochanan
will determine which position you take regarding the question in the
Sde Chemed. Because if you say that Rabbi Yochanan was silent because he
did not know what to answer Resh Lakish, then it would seem clear that
if we have a Yachid and a Rabbim, and the people are going according
to the lenient position of the Yachid - then we should agree with Resh
Lakish's posited objection (as articulated by Rav Yosi HaCohen) that we
should uproot such a custom. On the other hand, if in fact the reason
Rabbi Yochanan did not answer was because he felt the question was not
a really a question, because when it comes to d'rabbanans, if the people
have a yachid on whom to rely then we do not try and uproot the custom,
then we have our answer the other way.

And, surprise surprise, there seems to be differing achronic views
on the subject. While the Sde Chemed does try to bring both sides,
my impression is that he leans towards the view articulated by RSC that
we should uproot the minhag - the primary protagonist of which appears
to be the Pri Chadash. However the Zera Ya'acov goes the other way,
and it is clearly a pretty open question.

Note a few  additional matters:

+ it would seem that just about everybody agrees that if the daas
yachid is the mora d'atra of the town in which a person lives, or is
the Rav of the person in question, then one can rely on them, even if
generally they are a daas yachid. The classic case cited for this is
that in the town of Rabbi Yose HaGalili, they used to eat chicken and
milk, despite him being a daas yachid.

+ there is a whole intertwined discussion about minhag overriding halacha,
based on a statement in the Yerushalmi. While mostly, as indicated in
the Sde Chemed above, people seem to reconcile this by saying this is a
reference to dinei mamonos only, not everybody agrees to that either.
And there is quite a long discussion about a statement in the gemora
that since the minhag was to use a sandal for doing chalitza (ie a
d'orisa), even if Eliyahu Hanavi were to turn up and say that it was
incorrect to use a sandal, he would not be listened to - and whether
that demonstrated that in fact minhag overrode halacha, or it was just
because Eliyahu would be saying it by way of nevuah, not halacha.

+ there are some references that seem to suggest to me that the question
of saying brochos (or not) is different, but not long enough is spent
on this for me to be sure. There are some throw away references, for
example, to the minhag of saying Hallel on Rosh Chodesh. Of and by
itself there would not seem to be an issur in this, given the skipped
form of Hallel used, but once one takes the question of saying a
brocha over such Hallel into account, we are into the land of issurim.
Of course, this is why the general position of the Sephardim (I probably
need to be careful here, or RSB will pick me up and point out that not all
Sephardim follow this) is not to say a brocha over Rosh Chodesh Hallel -
but that seems to be based on the position that saying a brocha sheino
tzricha is an issur d'orisa. For those who hold there is at most an
issur d'rabbanan, it would seem fairly clear that here we have a case
of a minhag which thereby violates an issur d'rabbanan, but while there
were certain hints to this in the Sde Chemed pages to which I refer
above, it did not seem to me to be really dealt with (and I am kind
of putting two and two together). I would have expected more on this
as it would seem to be on point (as would all the other cases of saying
brachos over minhagim, of which I am pretty sure there is a lot to say -
and which seems to be skipped entirely from within the pieces of the Sde
Chemed I managed to look at on last days Pesach, ie the 87-100 plus a
few other paragraphs at 106, 107 etc). And there would seem to be quite
a lot else to discuss - For example take something I was looking at at
the same time due to a thread on mail-jewish, namely the discussion on
Cohanim doing birchas cohanim at mincha on a fast day at Ta'anis 26b -
which also seems to discuss questions of the custom of the people (ie to
do it) at least according to some it would seem against the Rabbanan -
(but again this would seem to relate to questions of dibbur and brachos,
which is somewhat different to the action of eg ma'asering) and this
was not, to my knowledge, referred to in the Sde Chemed piece discussing
the question at all.

Now in relation to our question though - ie saying hamotzi versus mezonos
on pizza - there is one additional major difference between the discussion
in the Sde Chemed and here. While one might intuitively think that
saying hamotzi is the machmir position, and mezonos is the makil position
(so that the Taz becomes a daas yachid who is makil, exactly as per the
Sde Chemed discussion) - in fact saying hamotzi is the makil position,
and saying mezonos is the machmir position in terms of the associated
issurim, ie of a bracha sheno tzricha. Because if one says hamotzi
when one should not, one is saying the shem Hashem by nitilas yadaim,
when not required, and then several more times during benching than
when benching after mezonos. So actually the Taz is the daas machmir,
against the position of the others who are the daas makil. I am not
sure to what extent that would alter the discussion of the Sde Chemed,
which does seem to be phrased in terms of the daas yachid being makil -
and whether or not the fact that we are talking about brochos takes us
out of the discussion all together.

There is also an additional matter that I would love discussed - although
I am slightly hesitant to bring it out, because I am not confident I
have enough knowledge of the precise position. I have been told (by
somebody reliable, but many years ago, in a totally different context,
and I am not confident I remember the geographical locations correctly)
that certain areas of Eastern Europe (I think including Lita - although
I think by this he meant Lita proper, not Lita as in in the wider
"yeshivishe velt" sense where it is sometimes used) tended, where there
was a psak, to follow the Taz, and certain other geographical areas
(Poland?) that tended to follow the Shach. Now on having a look over
pesach, I did not manage to turn up anything in writing on this, and I
am not sure I would even know where to look to find it. And I am not
that confident that I remember correctly. If however I do remember
somewhat correctly, then would the whole discussion about following
the position of one's Rav, or the Rav of one's town, apply here to
those who hail from geographical locations where the minhag was to
follow the Taz? Ie given that today we take our minhagim from what our
parents and grandparents did, rather than what town we happen to find
ourself in now - would that indeed transpose such rules to give certain
authoritative figures, beyond that of the Shulchan Aruch and the Rema
(to whom everybody knows this applies) the statues of their Rabbi, whose
daas yachid can (everybody agrees) be relied upon in such circumstances.

Anyhow, that is probably quite enough for one night. It has been a
completely fascinating diversion, and there would seem a lot more to
consider this would seem to be just the tip of the iceberg.

Shavuah tov

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