Avodah Mailing List

Volume 23: Number 58

Mon, 19 Mar 2007

< Previous Next >
Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Message: 1
From: "Moshe Yehuda Gluck" <mgluck@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 15:26:32 -0400
Re: [Avodah] donating blood

R' Mordechai Cohen:
I have heard others matir based on the assumption that one c/ consider it
the same as hakazas dam (which the Gemara understands?to be a?health benefit
for us)

I've often wondered if donating blood or getting a blood test is like
Hakazas Dam and therefore requires Netilas Yadayim afterwards.


Go to top.

Message: 2
From: "Michael Kopinsky" <mkopinsky@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 21:47:12 +0200
Re: [Avodah] donating blood

On 3/19/07, M Cohen <mcohen@touchlogic.com> wrote:
> I have heard others matir based on the assumption that one c/ consider it
> the same as hakazas dam (which the Gemara understands to be a health benefit
> for us)
This is not the Gemara's evaluation, but that of all "scientists"/doctors
of that era.  The assumed health benefit of hakazas dam (aka
blood-letting) was because a feverish patient had an excess of red bile,
and they had to let it out by bleeding.  Many patients died from such
treatment.  ("Hmmm, his face is red, I think we should slit his
wrists...")  While donating blood may be healthy (every blood donation
organization will claim it is), it is not for the reason the gemara thinks
it's healthy.

The last time I was at a blood drive, someone put a sign on the door
quoting the SA who says (and I misquote) "Hanichnas l'hakiz dam yomar Yehi
ratzon sheyihyeh l'refuah..."  That sign was a clear illustration of the
dangers of reading SA without any knowledge of history, and did not stay
up for very long. (I think I put it in sheimos.)

Go to top.

Message: 3
From: "Moshe Yehuda Gluck" <mgluck@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 15:29:09 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Halachic who is right from "The Lost Scotch"

R' MS:
This emphasizes a trend that I think is all too common - in order to
emphasize the independence of the halacha from the normal moral order of the
surrounding society, and that therefore we are not contaminated by foreign
influences, there is an attempt to show how different "halachic" reasoning
really is - and this deliberate opposition to the general moral order is not
something we should be proud of, as at least sometimes the general moral
order does reflect halachic values.? I would not want to go to any bet din
whose members think highly of a book like this.... 

Funnily enough, a few days ago I was in the situation of making a similar
argument. Someone was saying that L'Halacha he was right, and I had to point
out to him that it didn't matter - because his being right would be Machzik
B'machlokes, and therefore his "Halachic right" didn't help any, and he was
still wrong. Unfortunately, I don't think I convinced him...


Go to top.

Message: 4
From: "Michael Kopinsky" <mkopinsky@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 21:32:54 +0200
Re: [Avodah] Halachic who is right from "The Lost Scotch"

On 3/19/07, Meir Shinnar <chidekel@gmail.com> wrote:
> WRT the specific issue - there was no ones - davidi could have sung - just
> no one wanted him to.  That wasn't ones...
This is exactly comparable to the case in the Gemara - I hired poalim to
irrigate my field, and then it rained or the river irrigated the fields
for me.  The poalim certainly could have, if they were bored, carried
water to my field from the well, but it would have served no benefit.
Oness in this context means that for unforseen reasons the work agreement
was not carried out.  It could be because the poeil got sick mid-day or a
relative of his died, or it could be because the BH"B no longer needs the
work done (such as the cases mentioned above).  The Gemara calls all of
these oness.

Go to top.

Message: 5
From: "Michael Kopinsky" <mkopinsky@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 21:51:46 +0200
Re: [Avodah] Snuff (tobacco/shmek tabak) on Pesach

On 3/19/07, A & C Walters <acwalters@bluebottle.com> wrote:
> My question is: can one be soimech on them, or not

I'm sure all the major kashrus organizations have a list of common
processes or ingredients that can be chametz.  Ask them for that list and
then email Wilson's with that list.  Specific industrial terms are
more meaningful to them than theoretical or even practical definitions.


Go to top.

Message: 6
From: Zeliglaw@aol.com
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 15:29:23 EDT
Re: [Avodah] Ikkarim redux

In a message dated 3/19/2007 3:22:38 PM Eastern Daylight Time,  
avodah-request@lists.aishdas.org writes:

2.   WRT to orthopraxy - in general, someone who makes kiddush and is  shomer
shabbat is me'id on briat haolam.   The notion of hezkat  kashrut means that
unless we have specific knowledge to the contrary,  someone who is orthoprax
has the hazaka of being orthodox - and we don't  normally check ikkarim....

The Talmud tells us that someone who recites Krias Shema without Tefilin is  
considered as if he is giving false testimony because of the connection 
between  Tefilin and Shema. While the recitation of Kiddush and Havdalah 
accomplishes the  mitzvas aseh of sanctifying Shabbos verbally at the beginning and 
departure of  Shabbos, OTOH, I know of no source wherein it is stated that reciting 
Kiddush is  considered as if one sanctifies Shabbos by refraining from 
Steve Brizel
_Zeliglaw@aol.com_ (mailto:Zeliglaw@aol.com) 

************************************** AOL now offers free email to everyone. 
 Find out more about what's free from AOL at http://www.aol.com.
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: http://lists.aishdas.org/pipermail/avodah-aishdas.org/attachments/20070319/0a83bd93/attachment-0001.htm 

Go to top.

Message: 7
From: Zeliglaw@aol.com
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 15:35:04 EDT
Re: [Avodah] Ikkarim Redux

In a message dated 3/19/2007 3:22:38 PM Eastern Daylight Time,  
avodah-request@lists.aishdas.org writes:

RSB's  point is irrelevant to the main point of the post - my point is
that in  dealing with others, we have a greater obligation with respect to
what we  (not they - we) do than what they believe

WADr, I disagree, especially, when Ikarim are part and parcel of the  
rationale for determining compliance with whether one complies with a halacha  such 
as Shemiras Shabbos (as opposed to making Kiddush), shechitah and edus and  
even fulfilling Mitzvas Krias Shema which is defined as Kabbalas Ol Malchus  
Steve Brizel

************************************** AOL now offers free email to everyone. 
 Find out more about what's free from AOL at http://www.aol.com.
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: http://lists.aishdas.org/pipermail/avodah-aishdas.org/attachments/20070319/0ffda604/attachment-0001.html 

Go to top.

Message: 8
From: torahmike@gmail.com
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 15:57:43 -0400
Re: [Avodah] microphone on shabbos

Eli Turkel <eliturkel@gmail.com> wrote:
 <<<<<<<<In his most recent weekly shiur, Rav Asher Zelig Weiss expressed
himself about electricity in almost exactly the same terms as RMB does
here: the prohibition was determined first, and then the poskim looked
around for a category to fit it into.>>>>>>>

     There is a machlokes between the CI and the MB as to why  umbrellas on
forbidden on shabbos. The MB
suggests it may be Bona or Tikkun Kli when one opens it. The CI, however,
says it is an issur derabanan of Uvdah D'Chol.
     Uvdah D'chol, is basically a halacha that, according to the CI, is
really defined by the poskim of every generation. I assume this
is what R'Weiss meant(until i see his exact words) - not that there is a
blanket rule of poskim deciding first and asking questions later.
       R' Weber, a posek of neva yaakov, says that this(uvdah d'chol) is the
reason R'Chaim Ozer never bothered trying to analyze why
electricity is assur on shabbos. He felt that Uvdah d'chol should be
sufficient, and any attempt to analyze the technical deoraysa reason
might lead to people violating the uvdah d'chol.

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: http://lists.aishdas.org/pipermail/avodah-aishdas.org/attachments/20070319/0404dd4f/attachment-0001.htm 

Go to top.

Message: 9
From: Yaakov Moser <ymoser@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 22:29:42 +0200
Re: [Avodah] Halachic who is right from "The Lost Scotch"

1) I would be interested to see the discussion in the book, but it 
appears to me that the matter here is less than clear. The following 
paragraph in the Shulchan Aruch deals, inter alia, with a case where the 
Baal HaBayit hires a worker to water the field and a river came and did 
the job - and the Baal HaBayit has to pay. I started to read up to find 
the difference, but ran out of time. I did see that some Posekim suggest 
that if the Poel started to work then that is the difference - and 
arguably that is the case here where Davidi put in time and effort to 
begin preparing.
There is a question of how much he needs to be paid - but we are already 
in a different place from the answer given.

2) I feel that there is no question that whatever the Psak, he should be 
piad Lifnim MeShurat HaDin. He was there, ready to sing - but he was 
unwanted. This is arguably similar to a case where the Baal HaBayit 
changed his mind...

Jason Moser

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: http://lists.aishdas.org/pipermail/avodah-aishdas.org/attachments/20070319/dcb3eb28/attachment.html 

Go to top.

Message: 10
From: "Jonathan Baker" <jjbaker@panix.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 18:10:05 -0400 (EDT)
[Avodah] Retzei


> The way my father explained it to me is the following: If one will
> say, "Ve-ishei Yisrael utefilatam be-ahava tikabel..." "And receive
> with love the fire-offerings of Israel and their prayers....", he has
> just said something incomprehensible. There are no fire-offerings
> these days (unfortunately). The most logical construct is, "vehashaiv
> et avodah lidvir betacha ve-ishei Yisrael" "and return the service and
> the fire-offerings of Israel to the Holy of Holies of your house".

RMSS quotes his father, but for most of us, Dad has just as much an
idiosyncratic reading as we might.


> We are davening that HQBH will "Retzei b'amcha yisrael uvisfilasam", and
> one day he will "hasheiv es ha'avodah lidvir beisecha," and THEN "v'ishei
> yisrael us'filasam b'ahava s'kabeil b'ratzon." IOW, this is a
> chronological progression

> Why do none of the meforshim on siddur say this? (Caveat- I haven't looked
> all the meforshim on this issue, but am being someich on (I think)
> Artscroll's commentary which mentions only the two pshatim that RES

More interestingly, why does Artscroll use the "chronological" inter-
pretation when it's not brought in the MB's summary? 


> There is one medaqdeq in my community who punctuates it exactly that way.

Which follows from the following evidence, since the German siddurim
I was able to find which bother to punctuate, punctuate it that way.
I'm assuming Schweiz is more or less German in minhag.

From: "Eli Turkel" <eliturkel@gmail.com>
> [period before V'ishei] is the conclusion of the Gra. I don't understand
> why most siddurim do not punctuate it this way.

I suppose it's a good thing I'm at the office; at home I would have
turned to the Baer siddur and the Eizor Eliyahu first.  Being here, 
my main source is the Mishna Brurah, and he brings several opinions 
(in his sole comment to OH 120).

First, he notes that the Mechaber is referring to a minhag which skips
the beginning of Retzei, starting from V'ishei Yisrael; said minhag
is denigrated, although perhaps not so far as the Pri Megadim would,
who said it denied the text of Hazal; still one shouldn't do it.

That custom supports grouping "V'ishei Ysrael" with Utfilatam.

He then lists three explanations:

Tur: V'ishei Ysrael Utfilatam: tefillot are in place of korbanot.
Yalkut Shimoni: Angel Michael sacrifices tzadikim on a Supernal Altar,
  so Ishei Ysrael == Anshei Ysrael, and links with Utfilatam.
Some comment: Return the fire offerings along with the Temple service.
  And accept our prayers...

Taz prefers the second, Gra prefers the third explanation.  M"B doesn't
say which he prefers.  So three sources (the old custom, YS and Tur)
support one grouping, while the Gra supports the other grouping.

If I look at it, I prefer "V'ishei ysrael utfilatam", following the
Tur's explanation, coupled with grammar: 

Return the service to Dvir Your House, and the fire-offerings of
Israel.  And receive the prayers... - doesn't make sense grammatically.  

  1) it looks like an afterthought;

  2) the service IS or at least INCLUDES the fire-offerings, esp. since we
  can't ever do bamot again, so it's a redundant afterthought. 

  3) Lack of an "et" to indicate a direct object to "Hasheiv" also argues
  against it.  In fact, that also makes it group better with "utfillatam":

     a) v'...u'  to distinguish two types of "and"; the first indicating
     "here's a similar sentiment to the last" and the second indicating 
     "this is grouped with the previous"

     b) neither of the objects of Tekabel gets an "et", while the object 
     of "hasheiv" has an "et".

If they wanted to group it together with "Divine service", leima "Hasheiv
et ha-avodah v'et ishei yisrael lidvir beitecha".

* * *

Evidence from antique siddurim (via http://jnul.huji.ac.il)

1616 Hanau: lidvir beitecha v'ishei yisrael utfilatam [period] b'ahava
tekabel...  {yet a third punctuation}

1713 Berlin: Retzei H Elokeinu b'amcha yisrael ubitfilatam.  V'hashev
ha'avodah lidvir beitecha.  V'ishei yisrael: Utfilatam mehera b'ahava
tekabel beratzon.  Utehi leratzon tamid.  Avodat Yisrael amecha:  {this
siddur advertises itself as being "corrected according to grammar"} 
Comment thereto says that "all opinions have a pause after "yisrael".

1766 Siddur Shlah: lidvir beitecha v'ishei ysrael: utfilatam

The last three sources can be found at 

        name: jon baker              web: http://www.panix.com/~jjbaker
     address: jjbaker@panix.com     blog: http://thanbook.blogspot.com

Go to top.

Message: 11
From: "Micha Berger" <micha@aishdas.org>
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 18:45:27 -0400 (EDT)
Re: [Avodah] Retzei

On Fri, March 16, 2007 12:39 pm, Elliott Shevin wrote:
: I find the latter awkward; "return the service to... and the fire-offerings?"

: Nonetheless, I have a vague recollection that this sort of construction, with
: a subject of a prepositional phrase added after the phrase ends, is used
: elsewhere in liturgy and/or Tanach, but can't recall any examples and would
: enjoy seeing one or two.

The first one in Tanakh that caught my eye:
Es hama'aor hagadol lemembheles bayom
ve'es hama'or haqaton lememsheles balaylah,
ve'es hakochavim.

"Ve'es hakochavim" seems much like "ve'ishei yisrael".

As others beat me to it, the problems is in your elipses -- "fire offerings of
Israel" doesn't parallel "service", it parallels "service in the Devir of Your

I also wonder when Retzei was written. Was it during AKG, at a time when there
was a chanukas hamizbei'ach and ishei Yisrael, but no Devir built yet? In
which case, perhaps the tefillah was originally written to be read one way
(vehasheiv as ha'avodah lidvir beisekha. Ve'ishei Yisrael usfilasam...), but
period was moved rather than changing the nusach outright.

The problem with that idea is that there would have been no reason to keep the
line "vehasheiv es ha'avodah" all the time of Bayis Sheini. The two versions
make sense in their respective epochs, but what about the time in between?

If you're interested in this kind of discussion, you might want to join Mesorah.
See <http://lists.aishdas.org/listinfo.cgi/mesorah-aishdas.org>.

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             Spirituality is like a bird: if you tighten
micha@aishdas.org        your grip on it, it chokes; slacken your grip,
http://www.aishdas.org   and it flies away.
Fax: (270) 514-1507                            - Rav Yisrael Salanter

Go to top.

Message: 12
From: "kennethgmiller@juno.com" <kennethgmiller@juno.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 22:36:47 GMT
Re: [Avodah] Halachic who is right from "The Lost Scotch"

R' Meir Shinnar wrote:
> However, independently of the specific shakla vetarya, let
> me ask - assuming one finds that in this case like the book
> - is one yotze veasita hayashar vehatov? If one finds in the
> end that Davidi gets stiffed because the kalla hired someone
> else - is that a morally neutral result that, therefore, the
> interest is in the halachic reasoning?

My first reaction was to object, and say that not everyone can spare 
the cash with which to go beyond what is absolutely required. $500 is 
a lot of money!

But then I realized that the chasan of the story DID have that money 
available, and he WAS prepared to part with it, specifically to give 
to that singer. The problem is that the singer did not do the singing 
that the money was supposed to pay for. This gave the chasan 
an "out", a technicality by which he could keep the money in his own 
pocket and not surrender it to the singer. Money which until a few 
minutes ago, he was quite happy to part with.

Suddenly, I see things differently. Suddenly, even the suggestion of 
splitting the fee seems cheap, stingy, and mean, and I see RMS's view 
much more clearly. After all, as I wrote above, $500 is a lot of 
money - and it is money which the singer was depending on, and which 
the chasan was already m'ya'esh on (had already budgeted).

(Note: It was not clear to me from the story who would actually be 
paying the singer. Please change "chasan" to "father-in-law" if and 
where appropriate.)

Akiva Miller

Go to top.

Message: 13
From: "Chana Luntz" <chana@kolsassoon.org.uk>
Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 23:34:54 -0000
Re: [Avodah] Halachic who is right from "The Lost Scotch"

RMSS writes:

> The author then writes:
> " No.
> The singer had been told by the chosson that he wanted to 
> surprise the kallah. As such, Davidi knew that the kallah 
> would not know of the plan, and therefore have no reason to 
> tell Yehoshua that there was no room for a second singer. 
> Therefore, when the real Chaim ben Zundel showed up Yehoshua 
> and Davidi were equally surprised, sufficient grounds to 
> exonerate Yehoshua from paying.  "
> He bases this, amongst other places, on the Mechaber CM 334:1 
> "Hasocher es hapoel l'hoshkos hasoteh mizeh hanahar, v'posek 
> hanahar b'chatzi hayom, im ein darko l'hafsek, oh afilu 
> sh'darko lifsok v'hapoel yodeih derech hanahar, p'seitah 
> d'poel v'ein ba'al habayis (BH"B) nosein lo klum, af al pi 
> sh'gam BH"B yodeih derech hanahar, avol im ein hapoel yodeih 
> derech v'BH"B yodeih, nosein lo s'choro k'poel boteil. HAGA - 
> v'chein b'chol oneis sh'aru l'poel, ben sh'shneiheim yodim 
> sh'derech h'oneis lavu oh sh'shneiheim einon yodin, havi 
> p'seitah d'poel, aval im BH"B yodeih v'hapoel eino yodeih, 
> havi p'seitah d'BH"B."
> What do the readers on Avodah say?

And then RMK writes:

>As the quote MSS brought from SA shows, if there was a difference in
knowledge (what's the technical economic term for that, again?) between
>BHB/chasan and the poel/singer, he would be chayav to pay him k'poeil
bateil = to compensate him for his time.  Since there was no difference
> knowledge, he does not even have to pay that.  

However it seems to me than in fact in this case, unlike the case in the
Shulchan Aruch, there was indeed a difference in knowledge.

First of all, and only being slightly cute here - at the time that this
all occurred, Yehoshua was already married to Devorah and ishto k'gufo.
Yehoshua may have been surprised by the appearance of Chaim ben Zundel,
but the Yehoshua/Devorah combination was not.

But even leaving aside the halachic change encompassed by the nissuin
that occurred a few minutes earlier (to eliminate this let's say this
happened at the engagement party rather than at the wedding), the
knowledge level of Yehoshua and Davidi vis a vis Devorah's actions
(which ultimately is what caused the "ones") does not seem to me to be
the equivalent to the knowledge level of a worker and a baal habayis
regarding the operation of a river.  The stopping of a river is an act
of G-d, - one that might be known to occur frequently or not, but that
is what it is.  But the act here (the hiring of Chaim ben Zundel) was
the act of a person, Devorah, which then led to a chain of events that
prevented Davidi from singing.  It seems to me that there is a lot of
shakel v'tariah that is needed before this equation can be so
straightforwardly made.  A more analagous case seems to me where the
baal habayis hired one worker to water the field, and another worker got
up of his own accord and did the watering himself (without knowing about
the first worker) before the first had a chance to start.

But even if one is sure that this case involves an equivalent ones to
that of the river stopping, I don't think the cases are analogous, but
rather the analogy seems to me to be with the case where the baal
habayis knows that this is the derech of the river and the worker does
not (in which case the baal habayis has to pay).  One would reasonably
hope and expect that Yehoshua would have a greater knowledge of what
Devorah was likely to do than Davidi, who presumably had never met the
girl.  The fact that what Devorah did was actually a surprise to
Yehoshua does not seem to me to change that - if the river in fact
stops, it is clearly a surprise to the baal habayis, as he would never
have hired the worker to water his field if he had indeed thought that
was going to happen, despite him having a knowledge that this river has
a tendency to behave in this way.  So it is not nevuah that the baal
habayis needs in order to require him to pay, but rather a greater
knowledge of the derech of the river.  Similarly, Yehoshua must surely
be said to have a greater knowledge of the derech of Devorah - and
certainly knowing what the songs of Chaim ben Zundel meant to the
couple, in a way that Davidi could not have known, he should not really
have been surprised that Devorah tried to do something that would
incorporate them.  The method that she used may have come as a surprise,
but anything she did might well undermine his own plans, and it seems to
me that knowing the history puts him into a position of greater
knowledge more similar to baal habayis yodea v'hapoel aino yodeih than
to baal shneihem ainon yodin.

> KT,




Avodah mailing list

End of Avodah Digest, Vol 23, Issue 58

Send Avodah mailing list submissions to

To subscribe or unsubscribe via the World Wide Web, visit
or, via email, send a message with subject or body 'help' to

You can reach the person managing the list at

When replying, please edit your Subject line so it is more specific
than "Re: Contents of Avodah digest..."

< Previous Next >