Avodah Mailing List

Volume 25: Number 255

Fri, 11 Jul 2008

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Message: 1
From: "Rabbi Y. H. Henkin" <henkin@012.net.il>
Date: Sat, 12 Jul 2008 16:55:10 +0300
Re: [Avodah] mixed singing

[Micha, quoting my notes: -mi]
"The SE offers as a possible source: Megillah 23a forbids giving women
aliyos because of kavod hatzibur, not qol ishah."

See Sefer haMeorot to Berachot 45a and Rabbeinu Manoach to Hilchot
Berachot 5:7; both write that women may not read the Torah because of
kevod hatzibbur "but there is no pritzuta." Cited in my Understanding
Tzniut, p. 74, and see Bnei Banim 4:8 "Kol Isha beNiggun Taamei haMikra"
which I wrote to the Nishmat Avraham.

Yehuda Henkin 

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Message: 2
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Date: Fri, 11 Jul 2008 11:42:41 -0400
Re: [Avodah] public bet din

On Fri, Jul 11, 2008 at 12:17:08AM -0400, Richard Wolpoe wrote:
: On Thu, Jul 10, 2008 at 6:01 PM, Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org> wrote:
: > On Thu, Jul 10, 2008 at 02:54:49PM -0700, Eli Turkel wrote:
: > : I am not aware of any plave that says that monetary bet din procedures
: > : are closed to non-participants...

: > Me neither. What about LH -- attendees who don't need to know about the
: > baal din's unreliability will learn LH. Or worse, motzi sheim ra if
: > someone isn't around to hear the person was found to be dealing honestly,
: > and just heard the accusations.

: IF one person accuses in Mamaonos it is ussually enough to require sa
: shavua, so it is NOT motzi sheim ra

I don't follow.

David walks into the court, hears Re'uvein accuse Shim'on of dishonestly
ripping him off. Listening to the case he forms an opinion, and he happens
to believe Re'uvein's side of the story. Shim'on takes a shavu'ah --
so now David believes that Shim'on did a second aveirah.

If Shim'on is innocent, the person accepted MSR.
If he's guilty but the man in the gallery would never be doing business
with Shim'on, it's LH.

Either way, isn't there a high probability that allowing an audience
into a BD for CM would raise shemiras halashon problems?

How does the shvu'ah avoid that?

: OTOH dinei kalkus/missa a sinlge witness is guilty of LH motzi sheim ra fro
: coming w/o another. Masham the problem is the witnes not the laudience.

... or that they didn't have audiences, and therefore no one even
existed in order to have a problem.


Micha Berger             "The worst thing that can happen to a
micha@aishdas.org        person is to remain asleep and untamed."
http://www.aishdas.org          - Rabbi Simcha Zissel Ziv, Alter of Kelm
Fax: (270) 514-1507

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Message: 3
From: T613K@aol.com
Date: Fri, 11 Jul 2008 12:05:45 EDT
Re: [Avodah] TIDE and Austritt

In a message dated 7/11/2008, rabbirichwolpoe@gmail.com writes:


below]  The Red Sox come to Yankee  Stadium, does any Yankee Fan have

any desire to  Ausrtitt   the hated enemy by not letting him to play in   the
very Holy of Holies that is Yankee Stadium!   << [--RRW]
This is a particularly ill-chosen analogy since it does imply that O  and C 
are just two different home teams, eilu ve'elu.  How about having  Yankee 
Stadium host a game between the Yankees and the Nuclear Weapons  Engineers of Iran? 
 That would be a better analogy. [TK]

>>So R & C jews are as evil as Iranians  Islamo-Fasicists.
that puts a different spin on the Holocaust. This implies  that mostly 
resh'a'im got killed and we should be celebrating not  mourning

this is a good reason to show how Austritt  demonizes fellow Jews. It's a 
GREAT  illustration.<<


It's unfortunate that you don't read Areivim  because I have addressed this 
very point literally dozens of times.  I  believe that I have addressed it on 
Avodah as well but will try again  anyway.  Namely, there is a HUGE difference 
between the average C/R layman  and the R/C leadership.  Almost all of the 
laity are tinokos shenishbu and  by now, that is also true of many of their 
rabbis -- young women who have grown  up in almost total ignorance of Judaism.
The people of Iran are not the leaders of Iran.  I am astonished that  this 
distinction is so hard for you to grasp.

I grew up in a household that was dedicated to kiruv and in which non-frum  
Jews were regular guests.  I've been married for 30 years to a kiruv  
professional and throughout all those years, again, non-frum Jews have been  regular 
guests in our home.  My father zt'l would never have walked  into a C or T 
temple, would never have shared a platform with "fellow rabbis"  and "colleagues" 
in any public forum and would never shake the hands of their  rabbis in public. 
 But he was kind and hospitable to thousands  of  non-frum Jews.  How on 
earth do you suppose anyone can do kiruv if they  hate non-frum Jews and won't 
even talk to them?
You have to understand that it is WE who give C/R rabbis smicha,  by shaking 
hands with them and by acknowledging them as colleagues in public  fora -- 
such as  Federation meetings, Yom Hashoa programs, Israel Day  parades and the 
like.  In the eyes of their own congregants, the  legitimacy and authority of 
their own rabbis is always slightly suspect, but  when an Orthodox rabbi 
publicly shakes the hand of their rabbi and calls him  "colleague," by that act he 
ordains the C/R rabbi.  
It doesn't matter that you don't personally think so -- you don't think you  
are granting the guy legitimacy in your own mind.  I can tell you from  
first-hand experience that it IS so -- that C and R laymen look to see what we O  
do.  It doesn't take a lot of O rabbis to break ranks.  You only need  the 
occasional one here and there, and that is enough to extinguish in the eyes  of the 
C/R laity the clear knowledge that C and R are NOT-JUDAISM.  One  rotten 
apple spoils the barrel.  This confusion does not exist with regard  to "Jews for 
Jesus" or "Messianic Judaism" because there, the entire Orthodox  rabbinate 
speaks with one voice and no one breaks ranks.
You keep defining austritt with reference to 19th c Frankfurt, where bitter  
battles were fought between Hirsch's kehilla and the gemeinde Orthodox.   And 
btw  the latter would have had no shuls, no schools, no kosher food and  no 
mikva if not for Hirsch's establishment of austritt -- which gave the  Gemeinde 
leverage against the R reshaim they had previously lacked.   The Gemeinde 
attitude was "OK your tactics worked, they will agree to give  us what we want, we 
don't need austritt anymore, we won, let's  surrender." Great principle.  As 
if the R couldn't stop up the mikva  again the minute the O laid down their 
But that fight is OVER.  It's over.
If you don't like the very word "austritt" because it dredges up painful  
memories for you -- fine.  Come up with another word.  We -- TIDE, RW  Jews -- 
believe in a policy of NON-RECOGNITION of C and R.  Give that  policy another 
name, please, or I will just keep on calling it austritt.   You've been warned. 

--Toby Katz

President Reagan talked with the Soviets while pushing ahead  with the 
deployment of Cruise and Pershing missiles in Europe. He spoke softly ?  after 
getting himself a bigger stick.  --Mark Steyn

**************Get the scoop on last night's hottest shows and the live music 
scene in your area - Check out TourTracker.com!      
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Message: 4
From: Gershon Seif <gershonseif@yahoo.com>
Date: Fri, 11 Jul 2008 09:21:20 -0700 (PDT)
Re: [Avodah] TIDE and Austritt

I just read through RMB's long and thoughtful post on TIDE and Austritt.

I'm sure many of you are aware that this very question is the subject of a
number of articles written over the years. I wonder if some of this isn't
just chazora of what has already been argued.

I have been slowly going through Hirsch's peirush on chumash for some time.
Unless we are to say that Hirsch was spinning his peirush to fit what he
felt was the right course of action politically (which is something I'm not
inclined to say) studying the storyline of the Torah seems to be all about
the relationship of TIDE with Austritt.

>>> Granted, in the peirush Hirsch's wasn't discussing the
>>> separation from other Jewish groups though. He was talking
>>> about separation from other streams of humanity - in order to
>>> set an example for them. So take what I present just as food
>>> for thought and not a proof. But still, I think the parallels
>>> are there if you think about them. So I use the term Austritt
>>> below loosely to highlight the notion of separation.

First there's the universal plan for Man. (the hope for no need for Austritt since Mankind is all on the same page)
When Man fails and society declines, Avrohom Avinu emerges.

He is told "lech l'cha." Austritt. He must remove himself from his
surroundings in order to become what he must become. At the same time he is
to call out in the name of Hashem. - As A"A arrives in C'naan, he goes to
the hills, avoiding the cities (more Austritt emphasised by Hirsch)

Later Hirsch writes that Yitzchok needed to learn that he was wrong for settling (vayeishev) in Grar. He should have stayed there only a transitory "Vayagar." 

Yitzchok (after he was sent out of town and after arguing over the wells)
at that point Yitzchok left  on his own to the next location, this time
getting it right and going there b'lashon "vayagar." From that point
onward, things were much better for him. >>> Yitzchok had learned
the importance of Austritt.

Klal Yirsrael is live apart in Mitzrayim, Is to live apart in Ertez Yisrael.....

And all the while, just like A"A who is Av Hamon Goyim, with the role of helping the world come to its end goal, remaining apart.

Is it far fetched to say that Hirsch's Austritt and his understanding of
Klal Yisroel in relation to the umos ha'olom were parts of the smae
concept? I don't think so.

>>>I think Hirsch's insistence on separating his Kehilla from the
>>>WR etc. wasn't the Austritt he was really trying to make
>>>happen. That was a bitter and unfortunate result of "stuff that
>>>happened." He stuck to his guns because of the other Austritt
>>>from the Graetz's and the Geigers. He felt without a clean
>>>separation from R & C, Orthodosy's mission would be
>>>diluted. That was all a side fight that was a distraction from
>>>the real fight. I have a hunch that was RNB's understanding

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Message: 5
From: T613K@aol.com
Date: Fri, 11 Jul 2008 12:25:25 EDT
Re: [Avodah] TIDE and Austritt

In a message dated 7/11/2008, rabbirichwolpoe@gmail.com writes:

TK:  You have also alluded in the past to particular policy  battles fought 
between Breuer's and YU.  While my sympathies are mainly  with Breuer's, I have 
not seen in practice, and certainly not in my father's  life, a blanket 
rejection of YU outside of that localized community  tension.

RRW:  When I was at Ner Israel I heard all  kinds of negative comments re: YU 
and RYBS was never quoted as a  gadol

TK:  The RW world had serious differences of opinion  with RYBS.  He chose to 
go his own way.  If you were at my house you  would also hear negative things 
about YU and positive things as well.  To  reiterate what I said, I have not 
seen in practice a *blanket* rejection of  YU.  My father, for example, would 
not enter a C or R temple but WOULD  enter a shul with a YU rabbi.  Would even 
shake the man's hand, and if  he was a boyhood friend and classmate, he might 
even embrace the man!  Oh  yes, now I remember -- he had smicha from YU 
himself!  And he even worked  there for two years (two separate years in different 
decades)!  This would  seem to give him some standing to criticize what he 
didn't like there as well as  to praise what he did like.  Oh I just remembered 
something else -- my  father had dozens of close personal friends who were YU 
musmachim!  Fancy  that.


You define austritt as the shunning of fellow-Orthodox  Jews and rabbis.  I 
don't define it that way.  It doesn't matter how  it was  historically defined 
in Frankfurt or even in KAJ (where recently YU  rabbis have even been spotted 
on the dais at public events).

RRW:  >>Meetings  at secular events [NOT AT A SEDER] with  non-O clergy does 
not confer legitimacy. This is an old battle and is  obsolete. It only confers 
de facto reality no more than their being a shul  president or to non-Jewish 
Clergy.  Fro example at Soviet Jewry Rallies  non-Jewish clergy spoke and so 
did non-O Rabbis. Does not mean that we can  ride to shul the next shabos.<<

TK:  Such meetings DO confer legitimacy and give C and R Jews  "permission" 
to take their own rabbis seriously.  It is not WE Orthodox  Jews who are in 
danger of being misled and who might therefore ride to shul next  Shabbos -- it 
is our C and R brethren who are in danger.    They totally do believe that if 
the "rabbi" says you can drive on Shabbos  -- then you can.  They totally do 
NOT understand that they are doing  something against the halacha -- the C Jews 
believe that their poskim PERMIT  driving on Shabbos.  It is not at all clear 
in their eyes that their rabbis  are no rabbis -- and that is OUR fault.  We 
Orthodox Jews have shirked our  responsibility to our brethren, to our fellow 
Jews who are being sold patent  medicine by charlatans.


--Toby Katz

President Reagan talked with the Soviets while pushing ahead  with the 
deployment of Cruise and Pershing missiles in Europe. He spoke softly ?  after 
getting himself a bigger stick.  --Mark Steyn

**************Get the scoop on last night's hottest shows and the live music 
scene in your area - Check out TourTracker.com!      
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Message: 6
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Date: Fri, 11 Jul 2008 14:16:47 -0400
Re: [Avodah] T'uM

To look at the cases already raised:
Qiddushin and qinyan in general require shaveh kesef. I don't think the
question of defining money applies to them directly. Except that...

1- Hilkhos Shabbos requires knowing when masa umatan occured
2- Mi shepara distinguishes between payment with kesef the thing

We also raised:
3- Mitzvos that are defined in sheqalim, such as pidyon haben and
   machatzis hasheqel.

On Wed, Jul 09, 2008 at 12:10:13AM -0400, Richard Wolpoe wrote:
: So how did Golden Acres get around the issue of Muktzeh with scrip? What
: about  those rabbis who instituted this procedure?  Waht did they gain?

I'm not sure. I don't even know if my rav would agree with the pesaq.

On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 13:28:24 -0400, R Zev Sero <zev@sero.name> wrote:
>                                  From RRW's description it sounds like
> we are talking about actual scrip, not tokens, i.e. it could be exchanged
> for *anything*, both in the canteen and in private transactions between
> people; the examples he gave were "extra wine" and "a baby sitter".

I am not sure if RZS realized that "paying for babysitting" meant paying
Golden Acres for an employee's labor. Presumably she isn't working for
commission on Shabbos, so her pay for the night is the same if she is
needed to watch someone or not.

So it would seem that the only difference between scrip and money is that
GA scrip is only accepted by two parties: Golden Acres in exchange for
goods or services, and the customer, if he asks for a refund on motza"sh.

What would happen if the customers made a secondary market for them?
There already is such a thing going on with Yeshiva Ketana of Passaic
"Chessed Dollars" (scrip accepted by numerous stores in Passaic, Brooklyn
and Monsey which supports YKP and whichever schools subcontract under
them to sell scrip for their institution).

The question here is not "what is money" as much as "when did the qinyan
occur"? The same question exists if scrip were kesef or scrip were
barter with a shaveh kesef. Without hereing the rationale of GA's rabbi
(or the one who set up the Homowak's tea room) I would think, like RZS,
that until both items to be exchanged are defined, there is no qinyan,
and the qinyan would be on Shabbos.

Back to RRW's post, he asks:
: When is shava kessef kessef?

I would have asked the reverse: When is kessef, kessef?

On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 13:16:42 (EDT) RZS responded to a post from RRW:
>> Fiat money, like life insruance is an astraction.

> No more than silver-as-money was an abstraction in Chazal's time and
> through most of history.

It wasn't so much an abstraction as a standardization. For small business,
you trusted the coinage and didn't bother weighing each one.

How far can you drift from kesef in the sense of silver and still be
talking about what chazal were talking about? I don't know if Chazal
ever dealt with the homonimity of kesef, that it means both silver and
money. The split between the two meanings came later.

At the time Chazal wrote about mi shepara, coinage had its inherent
value. A sheqel was a sheqel's weight of silver. If it wasn't in coin
form, it had the same value. If a coin were shaved, it was worth less.
How is payment with such a coin "payment" and not "barter"? Is the silver
(kesef) any different than trading pelts?

Why would mi shepara apply to the silver rather than the cloth you bought
for it? What makes the silver "money"?

I think the answer is simpler than that... It's not that silver is
money, it's that the norm for doing business is that people treat the
deal closed when the silver changes hands.

Then they introduced money that is more like stock -- proof of ownership
of something of value. But by the later days of the gold backed dollar,
the US didn't actually provide a means of getting to Fort Knox and
putting in a claim for the gold. So even at that point, it wasn't too
different than today's fiat money.

I do not understand the discussion of fiat money as shetar chov. A shetar
chov means that the bearer of the shetar can come to me for goods or
services. Here, the goods and services are not obtained from the author
of the bill. Not that I disagree with the position. I fail to see the
similarity taken for granted to understand the suggestion.

If you wanted to buy a beautiful piece of artwork, does it not have value
beyond that of the paint and canvas? What if you didn't like the artwork,
and only bought it because you know someone else would, and they would
pay you a profit for it. Now, what if you didn't know that someone else,
and were only betting that such people exist? Doesn't that opportunity
constitute the inherent value of the picture? I would argue that fiat
money has inherent value in the same way -- the value of betting that
someone would take it off your hands for something or some service you
(or after 120, your yorshim) do want. Chazal recognized the value of
a business opportunity. In the case of legal tender, it's not a very
risky bet.

I would consider that more abstract than the money actually be made
of silver of that value, but that's neither here nor there; a possible
debate over the meanings of the word "abstract".

I think the only time we can't rely on the value of the bill because
of the opportunity it grants me is in my last subject, mitzvos that are
defined in sheqalim.

Last, if the mitzvah calls for a sheqel, then something equal in value
to a sheqel weight of silver may be shaveh eksef, but it's not the
cheftzah shel mitzvah.

To summarize:

1- Qinyan doesn't care whether or not you're using money, so for things
like hilkhos Shabbos, the question isn't whether scrip is money, but
whether one can make a qinyan before Shabbos without knowing until
Shabbos what he's making the qinyan on.

2- Mi shepara does distinguish between money and the goods being bought,
but that may just be social norms. The norm in business is that the
deal is closed when the money changed hands. If the goods changed hands
without the money, it's not violating expectations as badly.

3- The value of fiat money is arguably inherent, simply in that you now
have something someone will give you objects for. The value of an object
is often far more than the value of what it's made of. And often more
even than combination of parts and labor.

4- Sheqel can be defined as a cheftzah shel mitzvah, in which case kesef
must be silver. Machatzis hasheqel (possibly) is by definition a certain
amount of silver.


Micha Berger             Nearly all men can stand adversity,
micha@aishdas.org        but if you want to test a man's character,
http://www.aishdas.org   give him power.
Fax: (270) 514-1507                      -Abraham Lincoln

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Message: 7
From: Zev Sero <zev@sero.name>
Date: Fri, 11 Jul 2008 14:01:27 -0400
Re: [Avodah] money and halakhah

Richard Wolpoe wrote:

> As I posted today's kitzur [145] rejects banknotes for pidyon habein, 
> but aiui excepts shava kessef.  You can do the hair splits.

Pidyon haben is different than kiddushin.  In Pidyon haben, you're
not giving the money to the kohen but to HKBH.  The kohen is zoche
mishulchan gavoah.  So the question is whether HKBH, who is not a
subject of the issuing authority, and nor is He a tagar, will accept

> Remember if I tear up a shtar chov I do NOT tear up the Chov, only the 
> Evidence of a Chov. The Chov is still there and the only damage is that 
> I destoyed a document that makes things convenient.

Whereas if you destroy a $20 note, what happens?  It's gone.  There
*is* no "chov", there never was one.

Zev Sero               Something has gone seriously awry with this Court's
zev@sero.name          interpretation of the Constitution.
                                                  - Clarence Thomas


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