Avodah Mailing List

Volume 25: Number 133

Mon, 14 Apr 2008

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Message: 1
From: "Michael Makovi" <mikewinddale@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 11 Apr 2008 18:39:53 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Jews at war [was: R' Angel & Geirus Redux]

> No posek that I've ever heard of ruled that Jews who are citizens of a given
> country must make an independent judgement as to whether their country is
> fighting a just cause before agreeing to be drafted, or must allow
> themselves to be imprisoned or executed as draft dodgers if they are
> unconvinced of their country's justice.  The Chofetz Chaim wrote a sefer for
> Jewish soldiers drafted into whatever army -- it's called Machane Yisrael --
> and afaik it does not say that a Jew must be a draft dodger if he thinks his
> country is wrong.  (OTOH it goes without saying that any Jew who could get
> out of serving in the Russian or Polish army would get out of it -- because
> these armies were rife with anti-Semitism and forced shmad.)

> --Toby Katz

I suppose the logic makes sense, that if drafting is mandatory and you
cannot (safely) dodge, then there's nothing you can do and nothing you
are required to do.

But OTOH, why is there no issue of sacrificing your own life rather
than murder?

Mikha'el Makovi

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Message: 2
From: "Richard Wolpoe" <rabbirichwolpoe@gmail.com>
Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2008 21:41:31 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Is it ossur to have fun?

On Mon, Apr 7, 2008 at 2:46 PM, Jonathan Baker <jjbaker@panix.com> wrote:
> From: "Richard Wolpoe" <rabbirichwolpoe@gmail.com>
>> On Fri, Apr 4, 2008 at 2:47 PM, Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org> wrote:

>> > Music for the sake of music is more problematic. Not in and of itself;
>> > you're "speaking" with a fan of Baroque and Rhennaisance music, as
> well
>> > as some of New Age (if it isn't too muzak-y) and lately (I guess I'm
>> > getting older) some forms of Klezmer and Jazz. - Micha

>> I am really puzzled by any issur of listening to music that 'soothes the
>> soul" even during aveilus.   AISI, the issur of music during aveilus is the
>> kind of music that inspires one to get up and dance.   The kind of music
>> [say the Goldberg variations] which were meant to help soothe an insomniac
>> is to me just like taking a form of "spiritual" medication. It's not for
>> enjoyment but for relaxation.

>> I must confess legabi Sefirah the Aruch Hshulcan sees this as the opposite.
>> If dancing music is assur, instrumental music all the more so!  WADR, I

>> I have heard besheim RYBS that only music that caused one to get up and
>> dance [lich'ora even if one did not actually dance!] was the kind of music
>> that is assur.

> Hm.  I wonder if part of the difference is the social aspect?
>        name: jon baker

RYBS makes the issue one of simcha meireiu's. This is a big chidush/shinuy
from the gmara which construes this as simply reciprocal meals [see
elu mgalchin]

> That is, before recorded music, if you wanted to listen to music,
> you had to go someplace where musicians were playing: in the shuk
> for money, at a wedding, at a concert (if our Acharonim went to
> public concerts, as some are reputed to have been aficionadi of
> the opera).  All those occasions have a social-lebedig aspect.

My read is simple. If the music is an aspect of partying [such as with
a s'udas eirusin] i COULD be problematic

OTOH if it is simply for relaxation it is not for "joy" and therefore OK

I discussed this hilluk with Rabbi E. Kanarfogel today at lucnh

   1. He was not sure how the Rav got simha meirius as a Halchic norm
   into aveilus from the Gmara
   2. He thought my hilluk made sense [albet I am not saying he endorsed
      it for p'sak]
   3. He would stil follow th Rav's take of private vs. public listening
   4. Therefore R Kanarfoelg would have a probme attending a live Bach
      concert I see no concern - but if someone brought a guitar for
      kumsitz we would both have problems

Kol Tuv / Best Regards,
see: http://nishmablog.blogspot.com/

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Message: 3
From: "Richard Wolpoe" <rabbirichwolpoe@gmail.com>
Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2008 21:49:55 -0400
[Avodah] Saying L'dor vadorWas Skipping Korbanos

On Tue, Apr 8, 2008 at 1:51 PM, Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org> wrote:
> Also, when saying the third berakhah with the chazan, I take that to
> mean that if he closes birkhas qedushah with "Ledor vaDor", I should
> too.

People THINK that ledor vador is a speical nusach for hazaras hashatz
and therefore hae a possible issue of following the shatz whilst saying
the amidah together wtih him

the reality [99%] is that ledor vador is simply ANOTHER nuasach of
v'ta kaddosh that by conventions is usually said only by the hazzan. So
it would no be usurpin the Sthatz's role to say the alternatie nsuahc
anymoore than it would be to say sim shalom instead of Shalom rav at a
nusach sefard minyan. It is merely an alterante nusach issue

Ashkenazim tend to incorporate botth vrersoins at differing times
Sepaard tends to conflate e.g.:
   1. saying BOTH BishlmechaAND b'rov oz vshalmo [which are laternates]
   2. Saying BOTH teflillas kol peh AND amcha yisreol berachmim which
      are laternates

If ashkenaz had the 2 readings they would probably sya 1 at shacharis
another at mincha at arvis etc.

Kol Tuv / Best Regards,
see: http://nishmablog.blogspot.com/

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Message: 4
From: "Eli Turkel" <eliturkel@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 10:56:06 +0300
[Avodah] air holes

> If there is an airspace (chalal) in the matza, the airspace does not
> contribute to the shiur kezayis, and he must mash it (to measure it
> properly

According to tis if one eats an olive then it is not kezayit (ignore
changes in shiurim) since one needs to smash the olive (it is preety
At least eggs seem to be less smashable.

Eli Turkel

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Message: 5
From: "kennethgmiller@juno.com" <kennethgmiller@juno.com>
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 18:19:45 GMT
Re: [Avodah] air holes

In the thread "size of a kezayit", I quoted the MB as writing:
> If there is an airspace (chalal) in the matza, the airspace
> does not contribute to the shiur kezayis, and he must mash
> it (to measure it properly

R' Eli Turkel comments:
> According to tis if one eats an olive then it is not kezayit
> (ignore changes in shiurim) since one needs to smash the
> olive (it is preety squeeshy). At least eggs seem to be less
> smashable.

I think that RET is confusing items which are soft and pliable, with
items which are porous and compressible. If you take an olive, and cut the
sides off so that you are left with a cube one centimeter on each side,
then you have one cubic centimeter of olive. That is, the cube is 100%
olive fruit, and an olive does indeed measure one full kezayit. But if
you take a piece of bread or matza (such as in the MB's example), and
cut a 1 cc cube of it, what you have is mostly bread, but some air also,
so that you have *less than* 1 cc of bread.

Or maybe I misunderstood RET's post.

Akiva Miller

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Message: 6
From: "Richard Wolpoe" <rabbirichwolpoe@gmail.com>
Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2008 22:54:43 -0400
Re: [Avodah] K'zayis as weight not volume?

On Fri, Apr 11, 2008 at 8:07 AM, R Davidovich <raphaeldavidovich@gmail.com>
> I recently read a teshuva by R'Ovadia Yosef (Yechaveh Daat 1: 16) that
> gives the measurement for the k'zayis as a weight, not volume.

See YD re: bittul beshishim.
Is it by weight or by voulme?

Kol Tuv / Best Regards,
see: http://nishmablog.blogspot.com/

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Message: 7
From: D&E-H Bannett <dbnet@zahav.net.il>
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 18:03:41 +0300
Re: [Avodah] Kazayyit size

As I have left the lurking state by my comment on Sefira, I have the
urge to add something on the latest round of kazayyit sizes.

I wrote some years ago on the list about the measurements made by R'
Avi Greenfield on the sizes on a circle of hand matza of 1.8 mm thickness

Mishna Brura:             60 cc    20.5 cm diameter
Shiurin shel Torah:       50 cc    19 cm dia
Chazon Ish (in Kuntres)   33 cc    15 cm dia
R' Chayyim Na'eh          27 cc    14 cm dia
Chazon Ish at his seder   17 cc    11 cm dia
(l'fi R' Ch. Kanievsky)
R' Chayyim Benish         7.5 cc   7.4 cm dia
R' Chayyim Volzhiner      3   cc   4.7 cm dia

This subject, also, was covered on list in the past and should be in
the archives.


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Message: 8
From: "Richard Wolpoe" <rabbirichwolpoe@gmail.com>
Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2008 23:32:57 -0400
Re: [Avodah] sports and leisure

On Fri, Apr 11, 2008 at 9:12 AM, Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org> wrote:
> I don't think there are three categories: mitzvah, reshus, aveirah.
> Rather "reshus" is a spectrum between mitzvah and aveirah in which
> things are more or less advisable.

Gut Gezogt!

Tangentially this is how I construe such re: Milchemes Reshus, never
totally optional just not imminently required [discleaimer this is based
upon Rashi in Humash not upon the Gemara itself]

See Tosafos re: Arvis as Reshus. It matches this concept very well.

One of my rebbes in yeshiva opposed softball because there was a lot
of sitting around when one's team is at bat, at least basketball and
handball etc. one was constantly exercising. IOW, if one needs to get
a work out, do it with a minimum of bittul zman. Makes sense to me OTOH,
for those who were too out of shape for basketball softball might have
been the optimum

Kol Tuv / Best Regards,
see: http://nishmablog.blogspot.com/

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Message: 9
From: "Richard Wolpoe" <rabbirichwolpoe@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 16:44:35 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Sholom Aleichem [was: Tinok Shenishba]

On Fri, Apr 11, 2008 at 1:30 PM, <T613K@aol.com> wrote:
> In Avodah Digest, Vol 25, Issue 108 dated 3/25/2008 Arie Folger
> afolger@aishdas.org writes:
> When we say, "Borchuni lesholom, malachei hasholom" we are NOT davening to
> the angels!

It seems that many conflate making a request from a Mal'ach with PRAYING
to a mal'ach

This is a gray matter. if the mal'ach has ZERO bechira why even request
from a mal'ach?

There are those who say that a mal'ach HAS bechira but merely lacks
a yetzer horo. Then reuests [as opposed to prayers] are reasonable.
If a mal'ach is a machine it is silly.

Imagine plugging in a vacuum cleaner and askig it to suck up some dirt.
silly. There is no bechira. The correct request would be to HKBH,
may my vacuum do its job well

This is simlar to machnisei Rachamim. No one is PRAYI(NG to them rather
there is a request that they perform their job well on our behalf. This
itself is a subject of controversy.

Example if I am e-mailing you it is silly to request that
cyberspace/internet/world-wide-web speed my message to you, since after
all it has no bechira.

OTOH I might utter a request of our esteemed moderator that he permit
my message to go through to you!

Kol Tuv / Best Regards,
see: http://nishmablog.blogspot.com/

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Message: 10
From: "Richard Wolpoe" <rabbirichwolpoe@gmail.com>
Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2008 23:25:34 -0400
[Avodah] [NishmaBlog] Hasiba, the Raaviya, and a Potential

Given the Raaviya takes a very Liberal view re: Hasiba [Reclining]. He
declines to recline because after all in our day and age, we do not
formally dine on cushions on the floor! This position is well and good
- but is it a a truly Orthodox position to do away with a time-honored
Halachah in the Talmud merely due to changed external circumstances?

The Bavli gives very demanding parameters, lean to the right not the
left, lest one choke etc. Hasiba is very formal and very specific. How
did the Raaviya ignore this? Was he acting like a proto-Liberal Rabbi?

A Sea change occurred to me last year. Whilst slugging along with the
Bavlis 10th chapter of Pesachim [arvei pesachim] I took a short-cut
detour and I did the much more compact Yerushalmi instead. There it was -
Lo and Behold:

Q; Why must one do hasiba at the seder?
A: Lest one eat STANDING UP like a servant!

Could this alternate Talmudic source have coincided with the Raaviya's
Today I dined my 2nd S'eudah With Rabbi Dr. Kanarfgoel, a PhD in Jewish
Medieval history. I mention this idea and he did not respond specifically
but in general he noted that the Raaviya was the FIRST Ashkenazic source
to have a complete Yersushalmi at his disposal and he used it widely!

On a completely different topic, we have manuscripts in the Rambam's own
handwriting. At times he crosses out a Halachah and replaces it with the
alternate read in the Yerushalmi. Teh Rambam USUALLY is very RIF-centric,
but at times he follows Yerushalmi, probably AFTER considering the RIF
first as the likely Halachah [as above]


What does this portent in the future? As Artscroll Shottenstein is
publishing a user friendly Yerushalmi, people may see many concepts in
a brand new light. Granted that MOST commentaries attempt to get the
Yerushalmi to jibe with the Bavli, nevertheless, there will be brand new
insights garnished from sources perhaps more ancient than the Bavli. Will
this bring about a Sea change not only in how people view the Talmud,
but will it impact pesak -as it apparently did for the R'a'aviyah and
the Rambam?

Posted By Rabbi Richard Wolpoe to
4/12/2008 11:18:00 PM

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Message: 11
From: "Richard Wolpoe" <rabbirichwolpoe@gmail.com>
Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2008 22:52:43 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Is having a good time ossur

On Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 5:35 PM, Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org> wrote:
> I also feel he shoehorned things that didn't really match, which is why
> I will open with a request that one of RYBS's chassidim field this one.

> But obviously he didn't give a shiur on the subject without lengthy
> background. Rashei peraqim: RYBS defines aveilus as only coming in three
> flavors:

>    1. shiv'ah,
>    2. sheloshim,
>    3. ad shanah.

> And thus, miqtzas aveilus would
> be a term for the least level. Same as his model for the differences
> between bein hametzarim, the 9 days, and 9 beAv itself.

Prolbme with is a MINHAG not halachah. As such waht was acceptecd IS
wahgt was accepted. Such shoehorning is imposing a structure that does
not belong.

The accepatnce as a MINHAG is a flavor of NEDER. In fact when you
surrender a MINHAG you need hattaras nedarim. In the land of neder the
historical fact of WHAT neder was taken trumps any sevara of what that
neder of aveilus SHOULD have looked like.

It's like saying If I make a private pre-nup with my wife it MUST conform
to structures and stricutres in maseches kesusbbos. this is IMHO a
silly imposition

Not to mention that most of the stictures in elu megalchin are cconstrued
by ashkenazim as local minhag to begin with! When's the last time you
have seen one bare their shoulder doing aveilus!

And on this matter both Tur and Kitzur echo the same model despite about
550 years between them!

It's nice for the Rav to define ONLY 3 options from a menu but WAS ANY
Rishon or Acharon aware of this stricture?

Frankly I do NOT buy the entire methodology of coming up with a brand
new structure and super-imposing it retroactively OTOH if fyou have
early sources to at least demonstrate that it USEd to be that way once
upon a time that is different.

For example See Doniel Godlschmidt on mah nistana showing most rishonim
saw this as the leader's part NOT the kid's questions. it is to be said
ONLY the in basence of a question from a child. That is restoring a
structure leyashno.

I fail to see the Rav doing that here. If he is, plz show me the sources.
[At least wtih 2 matzos instead of 3 that CAN be shown to be the
Rif/Rambam model]
Kol Tuv / Best Regards,
see: http://nishmablog.blogspot.com/

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Message: 12
From: "Richard Wolpoe" <rabbirichwolpoe@gmail.com>
Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2008 23:49:32 -0400
Re: [Avodah] R' Berkovits = Conservative halacha??

On Tue, Apr 8, 2008 at 2:45 PM, Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org> wrote:
> On Wed, Apr 02, 2008 at 11:39:57PM -0400, Richard Wolpoe wrote:
> : It is quite clear to me that [aftere reading the bio of Rabbiner Hirsch]that
> : RSR Hirsch would NOT buy any sort of cognitive dissonance and I would
> : venture the GRA [and perhaps Rambam] would never accomodate this dichotomy
> : between theory and practice...

> I don't know. Didn't the Gra tell his talmidim to follow minhag avos
> and not change practice based on his shitos? E.g. didn't they say Barukh
> H' leOlam in his shul? (Of course, once he was niftar, things
> changed...)

Gut Gezogt. The Gra and RYBS [aiui] both told people NOT to change minhag
avos based upon their understandings of Halachah.

Nevertheless, their understanding of Halacha seemed to follow more
fundamentalistic texts than mimetics, and in the Gra's case he often
overlooked Ashkenazic texts in favor of a better Talmudic read [e.g. 2
vs 3 matzos in which the Bei'ur hagra dismisses the Rosh based upon the
Gmara, although the Rosh's requirement of 3 matzos is quite defensible

You rarely see RYBS take out a Kitzur and say the altenativee POV has
a solid basis, whilst the Siddur Tehilas Hshme DOES say so re: RBaruch
hshem L'olam

Permit me to illustrate. R. Maruice Lamm says [Jewish Way in Death and
Mourning] there is NO good reason to wait a year for hakamas matzeiva.
I do not know his sources but sounds like RYBS type of framing.
While Yekkes do NOT wait a year, many DO have a minhag to wait and
the Kitzur [amongst many] offer this option. The sevara is obvious,
for during the year the kids mourn a matzeiva is not a necessary reminder.

IOW, the statement SOUNDS like the common mimetic practice is
nonsense. What might have been better to say, that it is not absoultely
necessary to wait a year because this Minhag is hardly universal.

Many of the statements quoted by Hassidim of the GRA or RYBS come off
this way - imho. That if you do not see it their way, your viewpoint is
flawed somehow. It does not feel like an eilu v'eilu approach.

Since the GRA/RYBS published little we are always stuck with quotes from
potential zealots who possibly have omitted a softer more even-handed

When I was a teen, an NCSY'er from Boston led Shabbos Minhah and said
Sim Shalom in the Hazaras hashtaz - because the Rav said to do so -
even though it was NOT th minhag of that shul. Somehow, I doubt f a
kid came from West Hartford to Boston would have knowingly imposed HIS
minhag on a shul there.

The Rema- aisi -is less absolute. he might see this is the minhag and
don't change it, but he does not say [or insinuate] that the alternative
is somehow flawed.

Kol Tuv / Best Regards,
see: http://nishmablog.blogspot.com/

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Message: 13
From: "Richard Wolpoe" <rabbirichwolpoe@gmail.com>
Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2008 23:59:53 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Denying that Chazal are Oral Torah is Kefira?

2008/4/6 Daniel Eidensohn <yadmoshe@012.net.il>:
> The non?Jew then went to Hillel who
> accepted him as a convert.

IIRC the same story in Avos derabbi Nassan with a Girsa that omits the
phrase that Hillel a accepted him as a convert. Iimplying he merely
started learning with him on the raod to conversion


   1. do we HAVE the correct Girsa in the Bavli?
   2. Would the CI hold thatRuach hakdoesh also applies to flaky/suspect

For further iyyun see the different girsa in the Midrash Rabba re:
ma'asei Yadai to'vimn bayam...

Kol Tuv / Best Regards,
see: http://nishmablog.blogspot.com/

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Message: 14
From: T613K@aol.com
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 03:44:11 EDT
Re: [Avodah] RAYK and the end of chol

R'n SB wrote:
:  Can anyone honestly say, after seeing Israel export fruit and vegetables to  
: the world, when comparing the situation here to what it was 120 years  ago - 
: when it was a land of swamps and desert, that something hasn't  changed?

and in Avodah Digest, Vol 25, Issue 116 dated 3/31/2008 RMB  wrote::
> (Tangent: Obviously, Agudists can. Anti-Zionists will agree  something
> changed, but they will say it's the introduction of a nisayon.  But the
> neutral non-Zionist can say that it's not a fundamental  change.)

I don't agree that this is a fair statement of what Agudists believe.
I consider myself an Agudist and, like most Agudists, I believe that
something HAS changed in Eretz Yisrael. And no, the flowering of
flowers, of fruits, of vegetables, and of yeshivos and kollelim is NOT
just "the introduction of a nisayon."

Rather, we do live in a time when we can hear the footsteps of
Moshiach approaching, and we do live in a time where we can see many the
fulfillment of many ancient prophecies, the beginning of kibbutz galuyos
and the first stirrings of the Ge'ulah. When you see Yerushalayim
built up and full of Yidden, when you see the desert turning green and
the farms producing bountiful harvests, it would be very difficult for
a Torah Jew not to see that miracles are happening before our eyes.

What happened was that there was "something in the air" and the Zionists
picked up a whiff of it and ran with it -- in the wrong direction.
Away from Torah, rather than back to Torah.

Those secular Jews who participated in the physical work of rebuilding
Eretz Yisrael no doubt have a huge zechus and will have great schar
for it. At the same time, those secular Jews who tried to eradicate
Torah -- especially the rabidly anti-religious socialist Ashkenazi elite
-- will have to answer for all the evil that they have done.

As for Religious Zionists -- they have been and are a very mixed bag,
as some of them have aided and abetted some of the worst activities of
the secular Zionists, while others are talmidei chachamim and tzaddikim,
among the most idealistic and admirable Jews of our time.

My father once said to me (I have mentioned this before) that there was
nothing wrong with Mizrachi that wouldn't be corrected by Torah learning,
that whatever was wrong with Mizrachi -- laxity in mitzvos, or in tznius
-- stemmed from amaratzus and a lack of Torah knowledge, and that when
they began to seriously learn Torah, these faults would be corrected.
Many years later he reminded me of that conversation and said, "Do you
see the talmidim of Mercaz Harav, how careful they are with halacha,
how medakdek bemitzvos, how their wives are so tzniusdik? It's just
what I said, they are talmidei chachamim and their Torah observance
is impeccable." I'm not saying that he agreed with DL ideology, but
he certainly considered them to be part of the Torah camp.

Today even many of the DL are anti-Zionist by the standards of yesterday's
"Zionism." They no longer worship the army and the government, after
Oslo and Gaza.

To see that something wondrous has been happening in Eretz Yisrael over
the past century, and to see simultaneously that there is something
rotten about the present government, is not a contradiction at all.
It was always a mistake to conflate Zionism with ahavas Eretz Yisrael.

The Zionist enterprise has been ohr vechoshech mishtamshim be'irbuvyeh
(like so much human activity!). Yes, there is a nisayon involved in
the return to E'Y -- many nisyonos -- but the flowering of Jewish life
is not "just" a nisayon. It is also a Divine gift. It is a sign that
the Jewish people has not been abandoned and forgotten after all these
centuries of galus, it is a Divine smile, a hint and a promise that
the Geulah is coming.

--Toby  Katz

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Message: 15
From: T613K@aol.com
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 08:09:51 EDT
Re: [Avodah] Raziel Hamalach [was: Is a Mezuza a Segula]

In Avodah Digest, Vol 25, Issue 119 dated 4/1/2008 
From: "Danny Schoemann" _doniels@gmail.com_ (mailto:doniels@gmail.com) 
> I read  something in last weeks [Hebrew] Mishpacha (pp 44) by Rav
> Yaakov Posen  related to an old thread.

> He mentions that when his late father was  deathly ill they went to
> every Rov and "Baba" they could find, in order to  get brochos.

> One Tzadik told them to put a Sefer Raziel Hamalach and a  Mezuza in
> the patient's pocket. Once he was on his deathbed they put these  items
> on his pillow....

> ....He ends off by saying that we can learn  from here that (regarding
> various segulos) the concept of "it can't hurt" is  not always true.

This is the second time that I've seen the sefer Raziel Hamalach
mentioned in A/A. The other time was recently on Areivim re a discussion
about the mass printing of Tanya's, where someone mentioned that Raziel
Hamalach is also mass printed. I would have said that I never heard
of it or saw it, but then in my Pesach cleaning I came across a tiny
little sefer, Raziel Hamalach, printed in such small letters that my
middle-aged eyes can't read it. It must have gotten into my kitchen
drawer /somehow/ though I have no memory of it. What I am asking now
may be an alef-bais question to the erudite denizens of A/A but --
what the heck IS this sefer? What's it about, who wrote it, who is
Raziel Hamalach?

--Toby  Katz

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Message: 16
From: Daniel Israel <dmi1@hushmail.com>
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 01:01:00 -0600
Re: [Avodah] Halakhos of a US Governor

Micha Berger wrote:
> I am recalling a shiur given on the topic by my LOR back when R' Prof
> Yisrael Auman won the nobel prize and would be dining at a meal
> attended by King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden.

I heard that Agnon did indeed make the bracha when he received the prize.
I don't know if that was based on a specific psak.

Daniel M. Israel

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Message: 17
From: "SBA" <sba@sba2.com>
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 17:09:29 +1000
[Avodah] [Areivim] Chinese repression in Tibet - al pi Torah?

From: "SBA" <sba@sba2.com>
> I was wondering, if the Dalai Lama 'style' Buddhism is considered Avodah
> Zara may we say, that halachically, the Chinese government's decades-long
> efforts in repressing and obliterating that religion in Tibet should
> be considered a Mitzva of akiras AZ and ensuring that the population
> (or at least their future generations) will not continue to transgress
> against one of the 7 mitzvos bnei Noach?

There have been comments made that communism = atheism thus ver zogt
that it is any better than the Tibetan AZ?

OTOH, atheism is lechoreh, 'shev-v'al-taaseh', while AZ is a 'kum-asei'-
which is far more serious.

In the Aseres Hadibros there is a mitzvas asei of "Onoychi Hashem
Elokecho' and a mitzvas lo saseh of "Lo yihyeh lecho elohim acherim".
Presumably one would get s'char for at least keeping the 2nd.

Wouldn't it be the same regarding the 7 mitvos BN? 
Do they have a chiyuv to believe in Hashem - or rather only not to worship

And if it is so, then the Chinese ARE doing the right thing...

Yelamdenu Raboseinu...


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Message: 18
From: Arie Folger <afolger@aishdas.org>
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 09:12:51 +0200
Re: [Avodah] Sholom Aleichem [was: Tinok Shenishba]

RTK wrote:
> When we say, "Borchuni lesholom, malachei hasholom" we are NOT davening to
> ? the angels!
> When the man comes home from shul and his house looks nice and his wife and
>   kids look nice and the table is set and the food smells good, he sings
> Sholom Aleichem and says to the malachim, "Borchuni lesholom" -- "do your
> part, fulfill the promise of a bracha that my home will always be this
>  way."
> I would also like to say that those individuals who mentioned that they
>  sing Sholom Aleichem but don't sing the third stanza are implicitly
> criticizing the behavior of thousands of rabbanom and roshei yeshiva who
> are gedolim meihem.

So you say. There are halakhic authorities that disagree. AFAIR, in
Chaim Berlin, yevorkhuni leshalom was substituted for the usual text,
because apparently Maharal had a problem with it. Now I never saw that
Maharal and don't even know whether the song is old enough for this
account to be true, but the minhag of saying yevorkhuni does exist.

BTW, others, such as some Sefardim and Bobover 'Hassiedim, skip the
last stanza or change tzeitkhem to betzeitkhem, so as not to chase the
angels out.

Kind regards,
Arie Folger

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Message: 19
From: T613K@aol.com
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 04:02:53 EDT
Re: [Avodah] Sholom Aleichem [was: Tinok Shenishba]

In response to something I wrote:
> I would also like to say that those individuals who mentioned that  they
>  sing Sholom Aleichem but don't sing the third stanza are  implicitly
> criticizing the behavior of thousands of rabbanom and roshei  yeshiva who
> are gedolim meihem.

R' Arie Folger wrote:  
> So you say. There are halakhic authorities that disagree. AFAIR, in
> Chaim Berlin, yevorkhuni leshalom was substituted for the usual text,
> because apparently Maharal had a problem with it.

Someone else wrote to me:
> Incidentally it was the Gaon who is cited as the source of the
> custom of saying only two stanzas of Shalom Aleichem. He thought it
> obligatory to criticize his predecessors when he thought they were wrong.
> See Rabbi Zevin's book Ishim V'Sheetos p. 18, where he cites Tshuvos
> Hut HaMeshulash #9 and completes the quotation which was censored in
> the original.

I therefore withdraw my comment about the arrogance of people who skip
the third stanza of Sholom Aleichem. I mistakenly thought that they
do it on the basis of their own understanding and did not realize that
they were following earlier authorities.

But I still think that "Borchuni lesholom" is not davening to the angels
but just saying, "I did my part, now you do yours. My Shabbos table
is set, you are supposed to give me a bracha now."

If someone has a problem with that, maybe they also have a problem with
the medrash that says the malachim give the person a bracha. I'd like
to ask the Gaon that very question. Or ask Yakov Avinu why he demanded
a bracha from the angel who wrestled with him.

--Toby  Katz

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Message: 20
From: "Doron Beckerman" <beck072@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 17:56:32 +0300
Re: [Avodah] rare Pesach

Anyone know how often Erev Pesach falls on Shabbos in a Shanah Meuberet
which is a Shemitta year?

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Message: 21
From: D&E-H Bannett <dbnet@zahav.net.il>
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2008 17:19:22 +0300
Re: [Avodah] Is having a good time ossur

Re: <<If you read Rishonim and  omit Acharonim the  issurim
on Sefirah seem limited to:     1. Taspores       2.
nissu'in      3. some kind of mleacha [shabasos tihyena]>>

Others added that the aveilut appears only in the geonim. is interesting
to note what the geonim said.

Natronai Gaon says only that one does not marry from Pesach to
'Atzeret. (That's the entire sefira. There is no discount that makes it
a net ban of only 33 days.)

Hai Gaon adds an additional issur: One does not do m'lakha from sunset
until Shacharit. (And that is the entire night!)

And these are the only limitations they mention. With all the chumrot
that have been added over the generations, one wonders why one of
the originals was reduced from 49 to 33 days and the other has been
completely forgotten. I've seen attmpts to explain this loss of an
issur by conjecturing that R' Hai meant that one shouldn't do m'lakha
until after counting the omer! Do they think that R' Hai didn't know
how to write what he meant and when he wrote "until morning" he meant
something altogether different?

BTW, this was discussed on list in the past and should be in the archives.



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