Avodah Mailing List

Volume 26: Number 127

Sun, 05 Jul 2009

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Message: 1
From: Ben Waxman <ben1...@zahav.net.il>
Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 09:30:30 +0300
Re: [Avodah] Baruch Hu Uvaruch Shemo

In Ma'aseh HaRav, it says that the Gra was against saying BHBS for a 
technical reason, that the shaliakh tzibbur doesn't wait for people to say 
it, people do say it, and then they miss saying amen.

----- Original Message ----- >
> No, you're correct. I was repeating the claim that the Gra never said
> barukh Hu ubarukh Shemo (do I capitalize the "S"?) even with the vav
> hachibbur.
> Tir'u baTov!
> -Micha

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Message: 2
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 11:36:45 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Psulei edus invalidating the whole group

On Thu, Jun 25, 2009 at 09:15:53AM -0400, Zev Sero wrote:
: Does this apply only to people who could be in the geder of edus, if
: only they weren't relatives, cardsharps, or whatever?   In other words,
: if women are included among the witnesses, can we say that they don't
: invalidate the male witnesses, because they're not even potentially
: kosher, so they're as if they weren't there?

Something I don't get, although this has more to do with the thread
about R' Chaim and pesaq...

There is a Brisker "zach" not to say Vayekhulu after "shemoneh esrei"
alone, as it's a form of eidus, and eidus requires 2. For similar
reasons to standing for Vayechulu when making qiddush -- although
there we don't have someone else say it along.

Nu, so one time I see a father repeating Vayekhulu 2 serve as a 2nd for
a son who fell behind the minyan. I pointed out the irony of it, since
there wouldn't be eidus there way either.

Besides, why wouldn't eid echad suffice, anyway? It's not a matter of
oneshim or mamunus.

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             A pious Jew is not one who worries about his fellow
mi...@aishdas.org        man's soul and his own stomach; a pious Jew worries
http://www.aishdas.org   about his own soul and his fellow man's stomach.
Fax: (270) 514-1507                       - Rav Yisrael Salanter

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Message: 3
From: Michael Makovi <mikewindd...@gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 19:32:35 +0300
Re: [Avodah] R Tzadok-TSBP

I quoted RSRH:
> - Rav Hirsch, "Religion Allied to Progress": "The more the Jew is a Jew,
> the more universalist will his views and aspirations be, the less
> aloof... will he be from anything that is noble and good, true and
> upright, in art or science, in culture or education..."

R' Samuel Svarc replied:
> But what is the yardstick to measure it with?
> ...
> The perversion of truth, of taking a single quote out of context are
> awe inspiring. Contrast to another RSRH quote and tell me if he argues
> with RMF: "But the Torah and all its teachings must always... be the
> yardstick by which we measure all the results obtained by other
> spheres of learning. Only that which is in accordance with the truths
> of the Torah can remain true for us..." Vayikrah 18:4-5

My reply:
Everything you say about yardsticks is already present in the quote I
brought of RSRH. Rav Hirsch said:
> in art or science, in culture or education...

L'apukei that which is not "noble and good, true and upright". The
benchmark? The Torah.

But RMF says
> "My entire world view stems only from knowledge of Torah without
> any mixture of outside ideas (yediot hitsoniyyot), whose judgment is
> truth whether it is strict or lenient. Arguments derived from foreign
> outlooks or false opinions of the heart are nothing. . ."

Rav Hirsch accepts "anything that is noble and good, true and uprigth
in art or science, in culture or education"; as long as the Torah
approves, one may accept that secular knowledge. But for RMF, such
secular knowledge is almost ipso facto to be rejected, and it never
even has a chance to be tested against the Torah. Or, perhaps their
yardsticks are different; RSRH and RMF perhaps have different
conceptions of the Torah, and so even though both posit the Torah as
the benchmark, RMF's Torah-benchmark is far more critical of secular
knowledge than is RSRH's.

Similarly, R' Uziel says that we are not complete without secular
knowledge, but that secular knowledge does not affect our essence,
which is holiness ( = Torah, I presume). I see RSRH as being far more
similar to Rabbis Uziel and Halevy than to RMF. Indeed, most (AFAIK)
regard RSRH as having resurrected the pre-Expulsion Spanish
weltanschauung; remember that Rabbis Uziel and Halevy were Turkish
Sephardim with roots in Spain.


> You're joshing us, right? In all of O there are no rabbis that respect
> the President?

I'm sure there are, but I've never met them. I've simply never had the
opportunity to actually meet very many Orthodox Jews, rabbis or
otherwise. It isn't through lack of trying.

Michael Makovi

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Message: 4
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 13:27:52 -0400
Re: [Avodah] R Tzadok-TSBP

On Fri, Jun 26, 2009 at 7:02pm IDT, Michael Makovi wrote:
: Professor Shapiro, ibid., does note at length that Rabbi Haim
: Soloveitchik was reticent to pasken, directing people to the dayan of
: Volozhin for practical questions. Rabbi Haim was sure that his
: hiddushim were true and correct, but he couldn't bring himself to
: practically rule that way, against the SA in favor of a novel ruling
: of the Rambam's or a novel reading of the Gemara. Faced with the
: conflict, he simply chose not to pasken anything.

This is 180deg off from the evidence.

There was once an agunah question that arose in Brisk, a question arose
on a get where the ex-husband already fled the area. R' Chaim asked
R' Simcha Selig Reguer (the dayan) to write out the question to send it
to R' Yichaq Elchanan, and to request from RIES that he telegram back a
one word answer. R' Chaim expressed fear that if RIES gave his sevara,
he would be able to argue both sides, and thus never be happy with the
conclusion. However, if he is simply given the poseiq hador's decision,
he would have no problem.

(See RARR's "The Rav", 6.02, who also points to R' Shelomo Yoseif
Zevin's Ishim veShitot, pp 58-59.)

IOW, it isn't that R' Chaim didn't trust his lomdus enough to pasqen from
it, but that he trusted his lomdus's ability to explain a machloqes so
far that he couldn't see any way to choose one shitah over another.

As I said, 180deg from RMShapiro's conclusion.

: My justification of academic study of Torah is simple: if it is
: objectively true, then surely, it must have an effect on halakhah. If
: it is objectively false, then obviously, it should have no effect,
: since it is false anyway. When people say that academic findings are
: true but are outside the halakhic process, I simply cannot comprehend
: this....

Halakhah isn't the determination of truth, it's the determination,
interpretation and legislation of law. Data is an important factor, but
it's only a factor. And someone can be authoritative as law even if
we would no longer agree with the original motivation.

On Sun, Jun 28, 2009 at 1:54pm EDT, R David Riceman wrote:
:>Perhaps this is why I'm so interested in the effects of hashkafa on
:>pesika - saving einam yehudim on Shabbat, Rabbis Uziel and Haim David
:>Halevi, etc.

: This puts the cart before the horse.  Psak influences hashkafa rather 
: than hashkafa influencing psak.

This is RSRH's critique of Wissenschaft, that it took theories about
how Judaism ought to be and redefined Judaism to fit the theory. Alchemy
style -- fitting the date to the theory rather than the other way around.

However, it's not entirely one-directional. To continue the mashal,
we assume a well-established theory holds in cases we didn't yet
test. If someone asked me how fast a pebble fell when he dropped it,
I will assume it was roughly moving 9.8 m/sec after the first second,
twice that after the second, etc...

Where the halachic process doesn't give us a clear answer, what do we
do? There is a trend toward "choseish leshitas ha-" or "baal nefesh
yachmir". There are also those who apply the rules of safeiq to this
safeiq in the din.

However, using aggadita / Telzher "fahr vos" lomdus to break the tie is
also very common. (This being my nimshal. We can't get an experimental
answer, so we follow the theory.)

And we even question the "experimental data" when the theory is
sufficiently entrenched. The question is how far that goes. Chassidim
were able to find room for things like clapping and dancing on Shabbos,
not sitting in the Sukkah on SA, etc... The misnagdim considered that
beyond the limits of din, "alchemy" terretory.

However, R' Moshe Soloveitchik sat for havdalah out of a "fahr vos"
sevara that havdalah closes the set initiated in qiddush (which is said
sitting). R' Chaim and the aforementioned notion that Vayekhulu is a
kind of eidus.

(BTW, I forgot to give the punchline that tied that reply to the post.
If Vayekhulu is eidus, and a father-and-son pair can invalidate the
whole kat, then you should be careful not to attend the same Friday
night minyan as any immediate family members.)

On Mon, Jun 29, 2009 at 3:07am EDT, R Samuel Svarc wrote:
: Totally off the mark. The real reason is that to have 'sugyos' in Shas
: contradict each other is no evil in your eyes. Tosfos gives the most
: straight forward ways to resolve these seeming contradictions, a real
: straight shooter. If you would accept the reality, that Shas is a
: seamless whole (by and large - we are talking in generalities), you
: would have no issue with Tosfos.

Because of the earlier discussion as to whether the primary distinction
between academic study and talmud Torah is that the former is a quest for
unity or detatchment vs internalization, I was thinking about it further.

I think that someone looking to internalize will perforce end up trying
to unify. Each new datum encountered has to be incorporated into a single
worldview, lifestyle, value system and emotional schema -- in short, me.

We therefore have philosophical reasons to tend toward finding unity
across ideas, and Tosafos-style reconciliation (or Brisk-style finding
the exact point where the common theme reaches diverse variants).

On Mon, Jun 29, 2009 at 3:55pm EDT, R Samuel Svarc wrote:
: So, yes, RSRH (and RMF - remember Shira al Hayam, Shiras Devorah,
: etc.) holds that there exists nobility in music (to use but one
: example). But what is the yardstick to measure it with?

Or in poetry. Shirah al haYam was definitely sung, but "shirah" refers
to the lyrics, and can refer to poetry even without a tune, no? In which
case, the nobility could well be in the words, not the music.

: Don't lump RSRH with the others. They don't hold his views.

To put it broader: MO traces more from Hildesheimer's than RSRH. And is
doubly true of the Academic Orthodoxy subtype.

RSRH didn't have positive things to say about Wissenschaft even knowing of
the varient followed by R' Dovid Zvi Hoffman, whose first job was teaching
at RSRH's Realschule, and eventually becoming rector at Hildesheimer's.

On Mon, Jun 29, 2009 at 8:45am EDT, Rich, R Joel wrote:
: I would argue that R' Boruch Ber's statement , if taken at face value,
: is inconsistent with Brisker (and broader) traditional talmud torah.

Brisker derekh is actually newer than frum variants of Wissenschaft.
And, given the Rambam's description in his letters to Luneil of how
to answer questions on his Yad, no less traditional. There are more
precedents for RDZH among the Spharadi rishonim than the mesorah offers
for RCBrisker. Brisk is to my mind more talmud Torah, but I can't argue
it's more traditional.

: It wouldn't shock me at all if an academic better understood the local
: conditions (what one ate, where one lived) and how that informed on what
: issues an amora spoke on and how they were dealt with. Of course , that
: doesn't mean we rely on them for psak but I still think their input can
: be of value.

Total tangent, but there is another advantage to knowing the amoraim on
that level. I can't remember who said what until I have some sense of
the people I'm referring to. The way I relate to words requires having
some meaning to attach the word to, so that it's not just a set of
(familiar) sounds.

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             You are where your thoughts are.
mi...@aishdas.org                - Ramban, Igeres Hakodesh, Ch. 5
Fax: (270) 514-1507

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Message: 5
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 13:58:22 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Rambam on Metaphors

On Tue, Jun 16, 2009 at 06:40:22PM +0000, rabbirichwol...@gmail.com wrote:
: Given: It is clear that the Rambam holds that every anthopomorphic
: reference to HKBH is metaphorical

"Idiomatic" may be more accurate than "metaphorical".

: Therefore couldn't the Rambam apply this to "ayin tachas ayin" too?

I wondered why "ayin tachas ayin" being mamunus is a derashah, and not
peshat in an idiomatic pasuq. As I wrote as far back as v2n55 (17 Nov
1998), <http://www.aishdas.org/avodah/vol02/v02n055.shtml#15>:
> I'm not as sure the literal meaning is "an eye in place of an eye".
> That would be "bimkom". I couldn't find a single case where "tachas"
> means "in place of". However, "tachas" is used elsewhere to mean
> "payment". So it then becomes "an eye's payment for an eye".

> In this case, the halachic understanding fits the word usage better.

Here's my latest formulation... derashah = idiom.

Or to be more specific, when it comes to halakhah, we have exact rules
of derashah to tell us what's idiomatic and what isn't. Halakhah is a
rule system, and even the idioms are constrained by rules.

And so a gezeirah shavah showing us that "tachas" in other locations
refers to payment, or that an "eidah" is a group of at least 10, are
actually idicators that the term is an idiom.

(Just as a kelal uperat is a writing idiom, etc...)

I this half-baked idea has any merit, I would answer RRW's question by
saying that "ayin tachas ayin" IS "metaphorical", where the derashah
spells out the terms of the metaphor.

Tir'u baTov!

PS (administative mind-wandering): I just realized when writing the date
on that post that the decade mark for Avodah came and went unnoticed
over a year ago. Avodah and Beis Tefila merged, giving us the list we
know now, on 17 Jul 1998, ie 26 Tammuz 5758. 4002 days.

3502 digests, 53,991 emails (an average of 13.5 per day, 16 per day of
chol here in chu"l). Scary to think how many man-hours that means. Hope
it has been a qiyum of talmud and harbatzas Torah.

Micha Berger             "The most prevalent illness of our generation is
mi...@aishdas.org        excessive anxiety....  Emunah decreases anxiety:
http://www.aishdas.org   'The Almighty is my source of salvation;  I will
Fax: (270) 514-1507      trust and not be afraid.'" (Isa 12) -Shalhevesya

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Message: 6
From: David Riceman <drice...@att.net>
Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 13:48:58 -0400
Re: [Avodah] R Tzadok-TSBP

Micha Berger wrote:
> (BTW, I forgot to give the punchline that tied that reply to the post.
> If Vayekhulu is eidus, and a father-and-son pair can invalidate the
> whole kat, then you should be careful not to attend the same Friday
> night minyan as any immediate family members.)
Or the same meal!

David Riceman

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Message: 7
From: Jonathan Dickson <Jonathan.Dick...@blplaw.com>
Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 16:27:09 +0100
[Avodah] validity of ketubahs if .....

I think the comments regarding "signing" the ketuba are a bit of a red
herring. The chatan accepts the obligations of the ketuba when he makes a
kinyan on it, and then hands it to his kalla, bifnei eidim. I suspect (but
no source for this) that the only point of having eidim sign the ketuba is
so they can be traced later if necessary.

After all, if I make a verbal commitment to you in front of eidim, no
written document is necessary to enforce that commitment (under either
English or Jewish law) - you would just bring those eidim to court/bet din
and their testimony would be enough to establish my obligation.



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Message: 8
From: rabbirichwol...@gmail.com
Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 15:25:36 +0000
Re: [Avodah] Baruch Hu Uvaruch Shemo

> Look also at the progression of
>     sheAmar veHayah haOlam
>     Omeir ve'Oseh -- we introduce "asiyah", which people do too
>     Gozeir umQayeim -- now, the statement isn't itself the action, He
>              descrees and fulfils that decree
>     Meracheim al haaretz
>     Meracheim al habrios -- less cosmic than the previous
>     Meshaleim sechar tov lirei'av -- and in the previous line it was
>              everyone

> It could well be that the problem is in the connective, without which
> "barukh shemo" could be considered a rephrase of "barukh Hu".

Hang on for the ride :-)

Hertz's point:
Each phrase (Not just what we have)
Triggered a baruch hu
And the next phrase a baruch shemo.
Iow alternating responses

H - Hazzan
Q - Qehal

H: Baruch she'amar...
Q: Baruch hu
H: Baruch omeir...
Q: Baruch shemo


My point from piyyut is that sometimes we have a 3-pronged response

H: A..
Q: Omrim qadosh
H: B...
Q: Omrim Baruch
Then an interweave
H: C...
Q: Qadosh uVaruch

Now go back and retrofit the same type of interweave into say Baruch
she'amar and you would get:

Q: Baruch hu
Q: Baruch shemo
Q: Baruch hu uvaruch shemo

Point: the response is likely very old (say Gaonic)


> (technical)
 [hagaha RRW: practical]
> reason, that the shaliakh tzibbur doesn't wait for people to say
> it, people do say it, and then they miss saying amen.
> Ben

Amein! :-) this is my experience in most shuls where the shatz does not
pause long enough.

I usually pick and choose. If the shatz pauses I say bhuvsh otherwise
I don't

Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

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Message: 9
From: rabbirichwol...@gmail.com
Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 19:23:47 +0000
Re: [Avodah] validity of ketubahs if .....

>"After all, if I make a verbal commitment to you in front of eidim, no
>written document is necessary to enforce that commitment (under either
>English or Jewish law) - you would just bring those eidim to court/bet
>din and their testimony would be enough to establish my obligation.

IIRC verbal commitments do not tofeis lekuchos or meshabeid karka"os,
but dated written shtaros do.

Then again kesubbos have special diinim as a tnai BD anyway

Maybe a Yadin Yadin can comment.

Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

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Message: 10
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 16:29:11 -0400
Re: [Avodah] rational?

On Fri, Jun 12, 2009 at 10:54:31AM -0700, saul newman wrote:
: There is a lot of confusion about the term "rationalism." What is a 
: rationalist? The differences between rationalists and non-rationalists
: fall into three categories:

: A) Denial of Pnimius HaTorah

The most fundamental question:
Denial in its reality, or denial that it has relevence, or denial that
its relevence is necessary to know in order to get on with life?

As I already noted, the concept of "penimius haTorah" is fuzzy, and I
showed how to of mesorah's greatest rationalists also held of much that
we call penimius hatorah.

I would instead speak of mystics vs rationalists, maximalists vs

A mystic is someone who gets his religious energy from being in touch
with the great mysteries. He is therefore willing and ready to accept
every maamar chazal at face value because the more amazing it is, the
more it feeds his religiosity.

The rationalist, OTOH, likes his world to make sense. He wants things
to connect back to first principles.

Both sides believe there is only a single truth. So then what do you do
when reason and mesorah contradict?

A mystic would be thrilled with seeing how G-d is so far beyond his
comprehension, *appeal to authority* and dismiss his incomprehension as
part of the mystery. If mesorah and reason contradict, the problem must
be in my philosophy/science/logic. He therefore tends toward a maximalist
approach. (Even on non-metaphysical questions, such as belief that Rivka
gave Eliezer and his camels water when only 3 yrs old.)

The rationalist would choose an *appeal to reason*, and therefore would
presume that any misunderstanding can't be in the structure he built
from first principles, and it must be the mesorah which he misunderstood.

These two *tendencies* (not absolutes!) are what I see as dividing the
two camps.

M went a little too far to most people's likings with the rational
approach. Too many maamarei chazal were recast in light of what Aristo
made look self-evident. And so, there was a tendency toward maximalism,
which meant having an authority on metaphysics to appeal to. Thus the
Maimonidian Controversy led to a vacuum which motivated publishing
the Zohar.

Until this point in the history of Qabbalah, I would argue that there
was no real dichotomy of camps. As per my comments about how close the
Rambam gets to discussing atzilus and how the earliest rishon to discuss
sephiros was Rav Saadia. On the other side of the alleged divide, the
mequbal knew he was speaking the same language of form and matter, and
forms being shadows of higher forms as Plato did, and in fact he even
knew why -- Plato got it from us. They weren't anti-philosophy.

The maximalist unsurprisingly drew from Plato, who had more givens
explaining more of the gap between man and heaven. Which in turn meant
that less were second- and third-order implications of basic truths,
complications that would be hard to explain.

Then the version of metaphysics we today call Qabbalah gets identified
with Sod to the extent that the Rambam's claim that his philosophy is the
Sod of Pardeis reads very alien to us. And yet he has the same notions
of levels of mal'akhim that the qabbalah

But the Zohar too, while giving the maximalist more incontravertible
claims to work with, was heavily rationalist. Where the Ari stood,
whether his work was metaphoric for states of spiritual awareness /
revalation through history (Ramchal), discussing irreducible metaphysical
ontologies (Leshem), hainu hakh (R' Chaim Volozhiner and baal haTanya)
is an unresolved question. Without which, we really can't tell if his
intent was rationalist or to provide mystical ecstacy.

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             The purely righteous do not complain about evil,
mi...@aishdas.org        but add justice, don't complain about heresy,
http://www.aishdas.org   but add faith, don't complain about ignorance,
Fax: (270) 514-1507      but add wisdom.     - R AY Kook, Arpilei Tohar

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Message: 11
From: Cantor Wolberg <cantorwolb...@cox.net>
Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 17:17:59 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Baruch Hu Uvaruch Shemo

Rav Eliyahu Lopian would repeat the following amazing thought in the  
name of R' Simcha Zissel Broide, the Alter of Kelm, one of the prime  
students of R' Yisroel Salanter;
  It would be worthy for Hashem to create the entire universe and  
cause it to exist for 6000 years just so that one Jew would say  
"Boruch Hu U'voruch Shemo" one time!
  However, 1000 "Boruch Hu U'voruch Shemo's" is not equal to one  
  Nevertheless, 1000 Amein's is not equal to one "Amein Yehei Shemei  
  Yet, 1000 "Amein Yehei Shemei Rabbah's" is not equal to one single  
word of Torah learnt by one Jew!
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Message: 12
From: Yitzhak Grossman <cele...@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 1 Jul 2009 12:48:13 -0400
Re: [Avodah] validity of ketubahs if .....

On Tue, 30 Jun 2009 16:27:09 +0100
Jonathan Dickson <Jonathan.Dick...@blplaw.com> wrote:

> I think the comments regarding "signing" the ketuba are a bit of a red
> herring. The chatan accepts the obligations of the ketuba when he
> makes a kinyan on it, and then hands it to his kalla, bifnei eidim. I
> suspect (but no source for this) that the only point of having eidim
> sign the ketuba is so they can be traced later if necessary.

There is actually a major dispute among the Poskim whether a written
kesuvah is required in the event of a kinyan having been executed in
the presence of witnesses (see SA EH 66:1).  We are stringent and
require, at least le'hat'hilah and shelo be'sha'as he'dehak, a written
kesuvah, which must be Halachically valid.

> After all, if I make a verbal commitment to you in front of eidim, no
> written document is necessary to enforce that commitment (under either
> English or Jewish law) - you would just bring those eidim to court/bet
> din and their testimony would be enough to establish my obligation.

True, but not necessarily to the point.  In fact, the kesuvah is
obligatory even without any kinyan or written kesuvah, as it is a tenai
Beis Din (Mishnah Kesuvos 51a), but we still require kinyan or a
document, to ensure semichas da'as of the woman (see Kesuvos 7a Rav Ami
shari le'mival, 56b R. Meir omer kal ha'pohes, Tosfos s.v. ein osin,
s.v. aval, and 82b tanya nami hachi).

Bein Din Ledin - http://bdl.freehostia.com
A discussion of Hoshen Mishpat, Even Ha'Ezer and other matters

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Message: 13
From: Ira Tick <itick1...@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 1 Jul 2009 17:32:59 -0500
Re: [Avodah] rational?

It seems clear to me that while some discussions of metaphysics and
mysticism clearly attempt, through metaphor or direct description, to
explain spiritual or physical phenomenon in the world of objects and
actions, the real divide between rationalism and mysticism can be dispensed
with as follows:

1) Admitting, as MB does, that mysticism is a state of mind that relishes in
the mystery of events that do not follow strict rules (or are simply
irreducible), but doesn't dismiss or deny the right of the curious mind to
attempt to understand and explain those events.  Clearly, their exists for
any society and for each individual a balance between the value of
experiences of wonder and experiences of keen insight.

2) Explaining mystery not as an alternate method of explaining or
approaching events, but as a means of relating to intangible truths which
have no urgent need for explanation or relationship to the objective
description of events or processes.  For example, chomer and tzura can be
explained as relating to ideas present in the Platonic philosophy of
forms--which Plato believed to be real ontological entities and Aristotle
explained away as a priori constructs in the mind--but instead as a way of
viewing and appreciating the dichotomy between raw material and finished
form, or between given resource and ideal end, or between reality as it is
and the value or meaning we provide it in context, etc.

To further illustrate this meaning of mysticism, I will quote, as I'm fond
of doing, that very spiritually attuned person, Mr. Lincoln:

"The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot
grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will
yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will
be, by the better angels of our nature."

The use of "mystic" here, and the physical metaphors of "stretching,"
"swell," and "touch" arte not meant to convey some attribution of credit for
human memory to the infathomable nature of Divine wisdom, nor are they meant
to be explanations--rational or otherwise--for the phenomenon of memory and
its significance, but rather a means of creatively expressing emotional
experiences of yearning that are entwined with the meaningful experience of
memory.  No conflict whatsoever here with physics, psychology, religion, or
neuroscience, just beautiful poetic words that evoke a deeper appreciation
and experience of common humanity.  Oh, and by the way, the words are the
chomer, and the poetry the tzurah, or is it that the battelfields and
patriot graves are the chomer and the memories and angels of our nature are
the tzura?  You decide.
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Message: 14
From: Doron Beckerman <beck...@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 5 Jul 2009 11:25:50 +0300
[Avodah] Rabbi Akiva erred in identifying Bar Kochba as

Who says that he erred?

Some of the prominent people:
1) Meiri, Beis Habechira, intro to Avos s.v. Velu Hem Hanikraim
2) Abarbanel, Yeshuos Meshicho 2:4
3) The Arizal - Shaar Hagilgulim by R' Chaim Vital preface, letter 36; 38
4) Maharsha Chidushei Agados Sanhedrin 93b, s.v. Bar Koziva
5) R' Yaakov Sasportas, Tzitzas Noveil Tzvi (multiple times)
6) The Chavos Yair, Tziyunim Misefer Yair Nesiv
7) The Chacham Tzvi (quoted by R' Yaakov Emden, Toras Haknaos)
8) R' Yehonasan Eibshutz - Yearos Dvash section one drush 13
9) The Dubno Maggid - Ohel Yaakov Vayelech
10) The Malbim - Daniel 11:34
11) R' Chaim Palagi - Kol Hachaim Erech Hasagah
12) R' Tzadok - Or Zarua Latzadik Letter 5, s.v. V'hinei
13) R' Tzvi Kalisher - Drishat Tzion
14) The Ohr Sameach - Meshech chochmah Devorim 8:10
15) R' Chaim Soloveitchik - quoted by R' Yechezkel Abramsky, Kovetz Kol
Hatorah Nissan 5758
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