Avodah Mailing List

Volume 26: Number 246

Mon, 07 Dec 2009

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Message: 1
From: T6...@aol.com
Date: Sun, 6 Dec 2009 16:10:29 EST
Re: [Avodah] Project Proposal - Rewrite Chovos Hal'vavos

From:  Daniel Eidensohn _yadmo...@012.net.il_ (mailto:yadmo...@012.net.il) 

>  Wasn't this originally written in Arabic? If so, then I have wondered 
>  from time to time how accurate the translation into Hebrew is.  Has  
> anyone recently translated this work from the original Arabic? Would  
> not it make sense to have a rewrite based on the original work as  
> opposed to the Hebrew translation?  [--RYL]
It was  translated by Rav Kapach in 5761

From what language did R' Kapach translate it -- from ibn Tibon's  old 
Hebrew translation, or from Arabic?  From the context it seems you  are saying 
that R' Kapach translated it from the original Arabic, but you did  not make 
that clear.

--Toby Katz


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Message: 2
From: Daniel Eidensohn <yadmo...@012.net.il>
Date: Mon, 07 Dec 2009 00:47:10 +0200
Re: [Avodah] Project Proposal - Rewrite Chovos Hal'vavos

T6...@aol.com wrote:
> >>>>>
> From what language did R' Kapach translate it -- from ibn Tibon's 
> old Hebrew translation, or from Arabic?  From the context it seems you 
> are saying that R' Kapach translated it from the original Arabic, but 
> you did not make that clear.
> The original Arabic. 
> His edition has both the original Arabic - in Hebrew letters and the 
> Hebrew translation

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Message: 3
From: rabbirichwol...@gmail.com
Date: Sun, 6 Dec 2009 23:06:51 +0000
[Avodah] Seeking Source for Quote from R Eliezer

In Chofetz Chaim Daily companion P. 259 R. Eliezer Hagadol is quoted
advising his son:
"Do not sit with groups that talk about the faults of others..."

Where can this be found?
Is this an aggadita in Bavli? Or Pirkei R Eliezer?

Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

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Message: 4
From: Arie Folger <arie.fol...@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 6 Dec 2009 22:50:36 +0100
Re: [Avodah] Kosher

RDIsrael replied to my post:
> Not sure what the 'S' stands for.

S in SYLOR means "see."

> I just wanted to add one important (IMO) modification to the above: if
> you have a Rav, he should be the one you are asking these shailos to.
> Of course, any Rav worthy of being relied on will know when he doesn't
> have the expertise on a particular shaila, and he will either check with
> appropriate experts or refer the questioner to them.  And at a certain
> point a person may realize that for question X, his LOR will prefer him
> to simply ask R' Ploni instead.  But a person should not be finding a
> kashrus expert as a substitute or to go around his LOR, and the LOR
> should be the one making the final decision on what is an appropriate
> standard for the community.  I assume/hope you didn't intend to suggest
> otherwise.

Thanks for stressing this. No, I am actually on record telling people
that there is no substitute for having one's own rav, which usually
should not be someone with whom one entertains a long distance
relationship, but rather someone local (again, if possible).

What I wrote about is more of a prediction. Eventually, if one's LOR
isn't in the kashrus field, he'll have to direct you to an expert who
is up to date. This is not an issue of knowing halakhah, but of
knowing the facts. (and then, of course, of knowing the halakhah to
analyze the facts).
Arie Folger,
Latest blog posts on http://ariefolger.wordpress.com/
* UK Commander Challenges Goldstone Report
* On the Stereotypical Jew
* Wieso ?ruhte? G?tt?
* Wir sind f?r die Evolution!

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Message: 5
From: Michael Kopinsky <mkopin...@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 6 Dec 2009 18:12:16 -0500
Re: [Avodah] Auspicious times in Halocho

On Tue, Dec 1, 2009 at 4:57 PM, Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org> wrote:

> Similarly here... The gemara speaks about prospicious times for prayer.
> Does it laudibly speak of anyone utilizing them? (Other than Bil'am
> knowing the moment of Hashem's anger [Berakhos 7a], which is obviously
> no raayah, and davening kesaqin which is about zerizim maqdimin, not
> timing for metaphysical effectiveness.)

Who says davening at hanetz is only about zerizim makdimin?
Brachos 9b:
Amar R' Yochanan: Vasikin hayu gomrim osah im hanetz hachama k'dei
sheyismoch geulah l'tfilla v'nimtza mispaleil bayom. Amar R. Zeira: Mei
krah: "Yira'ucha im shemes v'lifnei yareiach dor dorim."

Lest you say that the pasuk is only brought to support a halacha whose
"real" reason is zerizin makdimin, I'll point you to Brachos 29b, where R'
Chiya bar Abba in the name of R' Yochanan advocates davening as the sun as
about to set, citing the same pasuk. In that case, and by extension on 9b as
well, Yira'ucha im shemesh is not about zerizin makdimin, but about davening
as the sun is rising/setting.

Many halachos about davening are phrased in the gemara as "auspicious"
things. 7b: Kol hakoveia makom l'filaso oyvim noflim tachtav. Those few
dafim (especially around 5 and 6 but really the entire first perek) are
replete with examples of, "do such-and-such, because whoever does
such-and-such, his tefillos are answered."

On Mon, Nov 30, 2009 at 10:45 PM, Ben Waxman <ben1...@zahav.net.il> wrote:

> If they add up to 24/7, then they are basically meaningless.

See Brachos 6b: v'amar R' Chelbo amar R' huna: L'oleim yehei adam zahir
b'tfilas mincha sheharei Eliyahu lo ne'enah ela b'tfilas mincha,
sh'ne'emar... R' Yochanan amar, af b'tefillas arvis... Rav Nachman bar
Yitzchak amar: af tefillas shacharis...

Note that this is not just descriptive, but prescriptive. "Yehei zahir." The
fact that the gemara cites 3 pesukim telling us to be zahir with each of
these tefillos means that there is something special about each of those
times. Yes, ultimately there would no navka mina if the gemara had said,
"L'olam yehei zahir b'chol tefilosav", but that's not what it did.

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Message: 6
From: Arie Folger <arie.fol...@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 6 Dec 2009 23:01:43 +0100
Re: [Avodah] Old style Hallel

R'Gilad Field wrote:
> In addition if you look up the source of the Ramabam , which according to
> the Magid Mishnah is Midrash Tehillim, there Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi is
> basically saying he never looks in Aggadic sources, but he did this one
> time -- and he regrets it! (the Or Samayach points out that the Yershalmi
> in the beginning of the 16th perek in shabbos, and others point out the
> 16th perek of maseches sofrim) which stregthens the question as to why
> Rambam included this mnemonic.

Agav ur'hei, that statement of R'Yehoshu'a ben Levi is difficult and
needs to be contrasted with other pronouncements of his. See teshuvot
haRadvaz 4:232, where he says that R' Yehoshu'ah BL was not against
Aggadeta, but against 'Eyn Ya'aqov type of aggadic compilations,
according to Radvaz because RYBL feared people would learn the
aggadeta kifshuta, and not with its depth. Thus, RYBL felt it was
actually prohibited to transmit aggadeta in writing, its
permissibility only came later.
Arie Folger,
Latest blog posts on http://ariefolger.wordpress.com/
* UK Commander Challenges Goldstone Report
* On the Stereotypical Jew
* Wieso ?ruhte? G?tt?
* Wir sind f?r die Evolution!

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Message: 7
From: Michael Kopinsky <mkopin...@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 6 Dec 2009 15:24:59 -0500
Re: [Avodah] Old style Hallel

Sorry to all the digest-readers for all the Hebrew in this post. I
couldn't see any other way to write this.

2009/12/6 Gilad Field <gila...@gmail.com>
> Has anybody come across any interesting explanations of this Rambam? I
> know there is a chasam sofer (Sukkah, 38a) that does try to explain -
> but I really don't understand what he is saying:

If your difficulty is with the mechanics of what he's saying, I've tried to
explain much of it below. I am still baffled on what he means with all this,
and on some points of the technical stuff as well.

> ???? ????? ?????'. ?' ???"? ?"? ???' ????? ??"? ????? ?????? ????' ????
> ??' ???? ?????? ?? ???? ???? ?"? ???' ??????

> ?? ??? ?????' ????

Gematria of Hallel = 65 = gematria of A-d-n-y.

> ?????' ?????' ????'

Gematria of Halleluyah = 86 = gematria of E-lohim.

> ???? ????? ????? ?' ????"? ????"? ??"? ?????? ???? ??? ???
> ?????' ??"? ??????

Adn-y E-lohim = the two heis of YH-VH (???) which are called Yesod Leah
Rachel (???)
Leah Rachel = 36+238=274

> ??????? ?? ???? ??? ?????? ??"? ???? ??"? ???? ??"?

65 + 86 + 123 = 274

> ?"? ????? ???? ????? ?????? ??? ??"?

When Aaron died, the pasuk says (Bamidbar 21:1) ????? ?????? ??? *???*...
So we see the connection between the death of Aharon and the number 274.

> ?????? ??"? ???? ????:

Not sure what this part is saying.


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Message: 8
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Date: Sun, 6 Dec 2009 20:17:05 -0500
Re: [Avodah] shidduch statistics

On Fri, Dec 04, 2009 at 11:09:51AM +0200, Saul Mashbaum wrote:
: This is the basis of the Talmudic principle that the mitzva of haggada on
: leil haseder
: requires "matchil b'gnut u'mesayyem b'shvach". The "gnut" shows that the
: exodus was from
: an intolerable situation, a genuine geula. Lacking this, our emotional
: response
: to the exodus experience would not be nearly as intense.

I suggested on Aspaqlaria recently (in a thought sparked by this
discussion) that this might be why birkhas gevurah is all about HQBH
saving someone -- Mechayeh meisim, Someikh nofelim, Rofei Cholim, Matir
asurim. If it weren't for such moments of yeshu'ah, we wouldn't notice
His Gevurah.

(The Gra makes a different connection, which I mention in Ashirah
Lashem. Gevurah is the strength to stand fast, and thus HQBH's Gevurah
is about His giving us the room to get into messes then then require a
yeshu'ah. This is how the expansion of the third term in "haKeil haGadol
haGibor vehaNora" is "Qonei hakol" -- which the Gra translates "Repairer
of the universe.)

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             Man can aspire to spiritual-moral greatness
mi...@aishdas.org        which is seldom fully achieved and easily lost
http://www.aishdas.org   again. Fullfillment lies not in a final goal,
Fax: (270) 514-1507      but in an eternal striving for perfection. -RSRH

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Message: 9
From: Yisrael Dubitsky <yidubit...@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 7 Dec 2009 11:49:11 +0200
Re: [Avodah] Project Proposal - Rewrite Chovos Hal'vavos

"It was translated by Rav Kapach in 5761"

Just to be technical, Rav Kafih (d. 2000) first published his translation in

and Zifroni's edition of Ibn Tibbon's translation (with changes etc) came
out in 1928?
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Message: 10
From: "Chana Luntz" <Ch...@Kolsassoon.org.uk>
Date: Mon, 7 Dec 2009 10:13:43 -0000
Re: [Avodah] Just How hot is Yad Soledes Bo anyway?

RRW writes:

> My chavrusa is a chemist and I entreated him to share some of his
> experimental data....
> Years ago he played with cooking at the lower extremes of YSB and he
> was able to actually complete some cooking, albeit it did take a long


> Now for some details of his hands on experiments.
> Beef:
> > Depends on what you are cooking: I was cooking beef at 131F/55C, but
> > you can go down to 51C safely if the meat is fresh.


With all due respect to you chemist colleague's expertise, it seems to me
that all this is, in terms of the halachic debate, not that relevant.  Yad
Soledet Bo is defined in the gemora as being the point at which a baby's
tummy scalds (or however you want to define that phrase).  Given that
experimenting in babies is not an option, we have various halachic arguments
as to what that temperature may be, but determining when something cooks
chemically is not one of them.

Proof of this would seem to come in the form of kli sheni and kli shlishi.
Your chemist friend could no doubt obtain much swifter cooking effects from
a kli sheni and kli shlishi, but again that does not matter -even though in
many cases these have higher temperatures that something deemed a kli

The one in common use is to point out that the knife used for shchita is
deemed cold (ie does not need to be treated as though it was cooked by the
blood of the animal it schechted), even though it is in contact with the
body temperature of an animal (43 degrees or so, although others have
pointed out that if you had a sick animal, their temperature can be higher,
just as a human's can, and we still deem the knife cold.  I have seen
figures of 45 degrees at least on that basis).  Not everybody  accepts that
argument.  The Yalkut Yosef that I referred to previously brings an argument
that the fact that a knife is deemed cold when involved in shechting is a
halacha like kli sheni not cooking is a halacha, despite the fact that the
contents of a kli sheni can be well above anybody's definition of yad
soledet bo.  Just as you cannot derive what yad soledet bo is from the
temperature capable of being achieved in a kli sheni, so you cannot derive
yad soledet bo from the temperature that a shechita knife is in contact

I personally am not totally convinced by the argument in the Yalkut Yosef.
It seems to me that the default position should be that we ought to be able
to learn yad soledet bo out, unless we are specifically made aware that this
is not a situation we can learn it from.  Kli sheni is such a situation, it
is always made very clear that it is an independent test of cooking (or non
cooking) that works in parallel to the definitions vis a vis a kli rishon.
As far as I am aware, the case of a schechita knife is not specified as
having its own rules - and hence why, if contact with a heat sources at yad
soledet bo cooks, then why is the blood of an animal not considered a heat
source?  On the other hand, I suppose, given that understanding vis a vis
the sun, which after all is clearly, physically a heat source, maybe you
just say the same thing for the blood of an animal.

On the other hand, where the Ben Ish Chai got his test seems a bit of a
mystery.  The Yalkut  Yosef quotes the Ktzot Hachoshen and making this very
point, that this is not mentioned in the poskim prior to the Ben Ish Chai
(who is after all, very late).  The Yalkut Yosef does say that he has found
some friends for the Ben Ish Chaim, quoting for example the Minchas Shai.
Still, I checked the Ben Ish Chai over Shabbas, and he gives absolutely no
detail as to where he gets his test from.  He quote the bit about the baby's
tummy, then quotes the Drisha (well I only know it is the Drisha because the
Yalkut Yosef told me) that you cannot therefore use a finger to work it out,
and then just states that the general rule is in our hand, if it is too hot
to drink or eat it is yad soledes, otherwise it is not.  Is this some sort
of minhag?

On the other hand, if one was considered able to use modern technological
methods, it seems IMHO that what we could genuinely use modern technological
methods for is to determine when a baby's tummy scalds.  After all, we now
do indeed have a body of medical literature built up about the temperatures
that are dangerous for small children (mostly due to coffee and tea
accidents, I believe).  While you no doubt could have an argument about what
the state is that Chazal were referring to regarding a baby's tummy, surely
what we classify as a burn must fit within that, and so anything that is
deemed to cause a first degree burn surely that would fit within the

After all, it seems to me, that the gemora could very well have said, if
that is what it meant, that the temperature of yad soledet bo was the
temperature that was too hot to eat or drink.  It did not, it gave the test
as being in terms of a baby's tummy.  I note there appears to be an
independent test in the Yerushalmi, but I am not sure it adds anything (and
if it disagrees with the Bavli, then surely we would pasken like the Bavli).

On the other hand, when I put this to my husband, he said that he could not
believe that the Ben Ish Chai did not know that a baby would suffer severe
burns if subject to heat well below the threshold that he set, and it is
clear from the Yalkut Yosef that Rav Ovadiah is certainly aware of this, so
obviously he does not deem it important, preferring to rely on the Ben Ish
Chai (which really means that this is the psak for the vast vast majority of
Sephardim).  On the other hand, he really does not go into detail as to why
he does not deem it important, and just relies on the Ben Ish Chai, which
given the facts seems very odd.

I also note that when I went looking for the Rav Moshe that RMB quoted,
while he gives the range of temperature quoted, he does not give any reasons
for the temperature range he has given.

All of which is a little frustrating, because I really don't understand why
they get to where they are (except for the shchita test, which does make
sense to me - and which, it seems to me, is probably not that far from the
figure we would arrive at if we used a modern medical test).




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Message: 11
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Date: Mon, 7 Dec 2009 06:09:21 -0500
Re: [Avodah] Project Proposal - Rewrite Chovos Hal'vavos

I think RRW's point wasn't about language and translation.

A more fundamental problem is translating Chovos haLevavos from a
medieval philosophical context to a more modern one.

And I don't just mean shaar haYichud.

Tir'u baTov!

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Message: 12
From: "kennethgmil...@juno.com" <kennethgmil...@juno.com>
Date: Mon, 7 Dec 2009 13:42:21 GMT
Re: [Avodah] Kashrus

I'd like to begin with a history lesson. When I was at YU in the 1970s,
both Hershey's chocolates and Kellogg's cereals were sold in the cafeteria,
despite not having any formal hashgacha. I cannot testify who actually ate
them, but the fact that they were sold their says a lot about how well
their kashrus was accepted.

A while back, someone sent in a post which explains many things to me about
that situation. I don't know who it was, because I have searched for that
post and I have been unable to find. It may have been listmember R' Rich
Wolpoe, because he has written many similar things in the past couple of

Whoever it was, he used the phrases "American model" and "European model",
where the phrase "American model" describes a situation where supervision
is actively given to the factory, and "European model" describes a
situation where there is no formal supervision, but only an analysis of the
manufacturing after-the-fact. In the American model, he explained, the
company pays a fee to the supervisor, putting the two in a very close
relationship identity-wise, while in the European model no such
relationship exists. The result is that many actions taken by a factory end
up as "b'dieved okay" in the European model, while the exact same action
would be called "ain mevatlin issur l'chatchila" in the American model.

This explanation clarified many many things to me. I believe that the
entire world followed the European model prior to the 20th century. During
the 20th century, the United States frum community developed this new
concept of hashgachah. It began in the early 20th century with certain
categories of food, and it grew to include other categories of food.
Milestones were passed in the 1980s when Hershey's and Kellogg's got formal
hashgacha, and I think the next hurdle will be canned and frozen
vegetables. The next generation will not understand why we considered it
acceptable to buy these products without a formal hechsher. (Actually, from
recent posts it is clear that we are going through this currently.) The
next generation after them, perhaps, will wonder why *we* did not insist on
a hechsher sure for the glaze on our fresh apples and other fruit.

Many people feel that the practices of the previous generations were
unjustifiably lenient. Did *they* feel that way at *that* time? I happen to
have a time machine on my shelf. Let's take a look:

I will quote now from a pamphlet entitled "The Foods We Eat", by Rabbi
Yosef Wikler, now publisher of Kashrus Magazine, previously titled The
Kashrus Newsletter. This pamphlet, copyright 1981, contains several
articles which he had previously published. I quote from the article titled
"Kellogg Corn Flakes", originally published February 15, 1980. I'd really
like to quote the entire article, but because of copyright issues, I will
just give some selected excerpts.

"Kellogg Corn Flakes is a familiar cereal in many Orthodox homes, even
though it has no rabbi or organization attesting to its kashrus. Actually,
most every Orthodox person eats Kellogg Corn Flakes. Do you eat food from a
take-out store? [begin italics] Almost Every Take Out Store Uses Kellogg
Corn Flakes. [end italics] They are used as Kellogg Corn Flakes crumbs. ...
In most cases the heimishe take-out stores do use this product...

"Why do we eat this product without a hechsher?

"Firstly, let me say that no one should feel obligated to trust any food without a hechsher.

"However, a number of cereals and other products enjoy the trust of the
Orthodox community. This is no accident. Some reliable kashrus experts have
examined these products and found them to be acceptable. In some cases,
because of the great need that the Orthodox community has for certain
products, these food products are regularly examined. This is in effect
almost a free supervision. ...

"Should we rely on Kellogg?

"This question was raised recently by a well-known authority on kashrus.
Those kashrus organizations who investigated Kellogg and found certain
products to be acceptable have done accurate research. But, how can we be
certain that Kellogg will continue to produce kosher corn flakes? ...

"Shall we assume that if they decide to change ingredients in one of the
"acceptable" cereals in order to save some money, Kellogg will place a
large advertisement in the Jewish papers in order to notify us all. Far
from it. The Kellogg company right now has no one to answer to since nobody
certifies their kashrus.

"There are literally dozens of other corn flake cereals and hundreds of
other cereals being sold that have rabbinical supervision. Why should
anyone feel it necessary to rely upon the statements of companies that no
animal derivatives are used. Years ago when few products that supervision
people felt the need to rely on such statements. There are still many
products that people feel lost without. But Kellogg Corn Flakes - will no
other brand do? ..."

An update to this article appeared in the Purim 1982 issue of The Kashrus Newsletter, making several interesting points:

"Rabbi Senter of the Chaf K says he attempts to avoid using Kellogg cereals
at the hotels under the Chaf K supervision." (I can't help wondering about
the implications of the word "attempts".)

That issue included a reprint of the Recommended Cereals list of the Vaad
Hakashrus of Baltimore, which included a Kellogg's Corn Flakes and other
Kellogg's cereals. "When we inquired how information was obtained for its
list, the Vaad Hakashrus of Baltimore responded as follows: The cereal list
which we have prepared is based upon information which we have received
from reliable sources who have inspected the plants or who are
knowledgeable of the process and/or ingredients."

Finally, at the bottom of page 6: "FLASH - Kellogg's has applied for
supervision by the V.H. - Vaad Harabonim of Boston. Watch The Kashrus
Newsletter for further information." A short while later Kellogg's did
receive VH supervision, and is still supervised by them today. I can't help
but suspect that these articles contributed to that.

One could still argue: Do such products need supervision or not? Is it a chumrah to insist on a hechsher? Or is it a kulah to eat such food without a hechsher?

Here's a more modern example, with a quote which you can look up yourself
easily. Can one eat/drink the Slurpees from a non-supervised 7-Eleven
store? Please read the very nuanced article by Rabbi Sholem Fishbane,
Kashruth Administrator of Chicago's cRc, at http://www.crcweb

You can also read what the OU says in an article titled "Drinking Coffee on
the Road", In the Dec. 2008 issue of "The Daf HaKashrus", which is not
intended for the general public, but is subtitled "A monthly newsletter for
the OU Rabbinic Field Representative". The article is online at http://www
.oukosher.org/index.php/common/article/1378519. A PDF of the whole
newsletter is at http://pro

THE CONCLUSION I REACH from these articles is that there is not one answer.
The multiple answers are very situation-based. I often compare it to the
many things which have changed in America because of the Americans With
Disabilities Act. This law has made many changes in the way public
buildings - including shuls - are built, requiring them to be accessible to
people in wheelchairs, and many other accommodations. People who have grown
up with this law, which is now almost 20 years old, perceive such
accessibility to be a birthright. I am not disagreeing. But 50 years ago,
to insist on a wheelchair ramp for every school, shul, and bus, would have
been laughable.

SO TOO IN KASHRUS. In some situations, we can easily do without a product
if we are not satisfied with its kashrus. In other situations, it's not so
easy. I recall an ArtScroll biography about some person (I don't remember
who) and his role as one of the few genuinely frum U.S. servicemen during
World War II. It mentions how careful he was with kashrus, and it mentioned
of the name of the breakfast cereal which he ate then. It did *not* mention
which hashgacha that cereal had, and I've always presumed (rightly or
wrongly) that there were many manufactured products which even the frummest
of that generation ate, based on the ingredients and other information. But
we have advanced, B"H, and we would no more eat a breakfast cereal without
a hechsher, than we would build a shul which the elderly find it impossible
to climb into.

R' Samuel Svarc wrote:
> Kashrus is different then a lot of 'issurim' in that it
> has 'timtum halev'. ... It is ... excuse the expression,
> foolish to gamble your neshoma [timtum] over a piece of
> food.

I don't dispute a word of that. But I'll note that you used the word
"gamble", and indeed, it is a gamble. We don't really know whether or not
this food really contains any tarfus. It is quite possible that there is
nothing wrong with this food at all. But it is, admittedly, a gamble.

In any gamble, one that weighs the possible risks against the possible
rewards. The article above about coffee, for example, was very clear that
if one is driving and feels tired, is more dangerous to continue driving
that way, and less dangerous to drink coffee which might have some very
minor kashrus problems, real though they might be.

Personally, I do not understand why the take-out stores felt a need to use
Kellogg's Corn Flakes when they had no hashgacha, when Post Corn Flakes had
already been under the OK for many years. Perhaps Post Corn Flakes were
unavailable as crumbs. That might make a very big difference to a take-out
store, but to a hotel serving breakfast? Maybe I am underestimating the
cachet of the "Kellogg's" brand name. (The "New Coke" debacle had not yet
occurred when those articles were written.)

R' Rich Wolpoe wrote:
> When you buy uncertified products, there may be an entire
> slew of "bittuls" that may be genuinely relied upon.
> But when one certifies a product, lechatchilah's take over
> [EG ein mevatlin afilu issur derabbanan lechatchila]
> R Schwab used to say: "I'm a lechatchila Jew". IOW WRT
> kashrus he would not allow any kind of bedi'avads at the
> outset.

That's a great soundbite, but when you get into specifics it turns very fuzzy.

In a given situation, one posek will say, "This procedure satisfies 80% of
the acharonim. We can clearly rely on it l'chatchila." And another posek
will say, "We'll rely on that b'dieved, but l'chatchilah, we'll use this
other procedure, which is only slightly more difficult, and satisfies 95%
of the acharonim."

Is the former unjustifiably lenient? Is the latter ridiculously strict? I dunno.

Akiva Miller

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Message: 13
From: rabbirichwol...@gmail.com
Date: Mon, 7 Dec 2009 19:00:55 +0000
Re: [Avodah] Just How hot is Yad Soledes Bo anyway?

Re:  Rn Chana's post

FWIW My chemist chavrusa now has semicha

We weren't measuring YSB directly. We were measuring what is the
threshold temperature that cooking-bishul takes place. So I see
retropsectively that I mis-titled the subject line. Sorry for any

Should have said "at what temp can Bishul take place" [sans salt or
vinegar etc.]

Under the proper conditions - and given sufficient time - 40 Celsius
will cook

Note that since the 4th dimension here is time, it will NEVER cook
significanly in a kli sheini that is only 40C! [Maybe at most kdei'
klippah.] The only pragmatic way to get 40C to cook is on a renewable
source of heat.

Point? A simmering pot at 40C is cooking and would need to be kashered
via hag'alah with minimally the same circumstances [kvol'o kach polto
as per SA]
NB RAF has some sheetos in Roshonim that are achmir

Issues of bishul for shabbos are mostly a different genre here because
we are primarily discussing hag'ala and perhaps bishul bassar bechalav
in this thread. [See below re: bishul achar bishul]

EG if 40C CAN cook, on Shabbos you would have an issur d'orraiso
immediately even if it was not a shiur - because of hatzi shiur asra torah

Re: the damage be'diavad of milk simmer @ 40C for a short time - the
damage may be negligible, and so its hag'alah to restore it to being
parve may also be correspondingly negligible.

And re: Shabbos, too, ein bishul achar bishul must mean it has reached
a threshold of bishur [EG maachal ben drosai] but more probably mevushal
kol tzorko

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Message: 14
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Date: Mon, 7 Dec 2009 14:28:23 -0500
Re: [Avodah] Just How hot is Yad Soledes Bo anyway?

On Mon, Dec 07, 2009 at 07:00:55PM +0000, rabbirichwol...@gmail.com wrote:
: Re:  Rn Chana's post
: We weren't measuring YSB directly. We were measuring what is the
: threshold temperature that cooking-bishul takes place. So I see
: retropsectively that I mis-titled the subject line. Sorry for any
: confusion!

I think one of RnCL's points was that it's unclear that yad soledes bo
is linked to actual bishul. As we see from things like keli sheini and
beyond issues, sometimes derekh bishul is a bigger issue than whether
bishul can actually take place.

If that wasn't her intent when writing:
> With all due respect to you chemist colleague's expertise, it seems toe
> that all this is, in terms of the halachic debate, not that relevant.
> Proof of this would seem to come in the form of kli sheni and kli hlishi.
> Your chemist friend could no doubt obtain much swifter cooking effects from
> a kli sheni and kli shlishi, but again that does not matter...
then let me put the idea on the table now.

Continuing RnCL's post:
> The one in common use is to point out that the knife used for shchita is
> deemed cold (ie does not need to be treated as though it was cooked by the
> blood of the animal it schechted), even though it is in contact with the
> body temperature of an animal (43 degrees or so, although others have

But for how long? Does the actually knife heat up? (I would think that
if it does, pressure and friction might have more to do with it.)

As for measuring YSB experimentally, R' CO Chait tried this with us when
he was my rebbe in HS. We went down to the lab, took out bunsen burners
and thermometets, divided up into lab partners.

Our answers end up wildly different if you put your hand into hot water
vs if you put your hand into water and slowly heated it up.

(See <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boiling_frog>, which begins:
    The boiling frog story is a widespread anecdote describing a frog
    slowly being boiled alive. The premise is that if a frog is placed
    in boiling water, it will jump out, but if it is placed in cold
    water that is slowly heated, it will not perceive the danger and
    will be cooked to death. The story is often used as a metaphor for
    the inability of people to react to significant changes that occur
    gradually.[1] According to contemporary biologists the premise
    of the story is not literally true; an actual frog submerged and
    gradually heated will jump out.[2][3] However, 19th century research
    experiments appear to corroborate one underlying premise; that a
    submerged frog will stay still when heated, but only as long as the
    heating is gradual enough.[4]

Lemaaseh, the frog will jump out before dying, but at a far higher temp.
Just like our hands.)

That said, for those who put their finger in at 5 deg intervals rather
than doing it gradually, automatic recoil was in a very narrow range of
temps. I'm not sure what it was. Vague inkling it was 135degF, but don't
put too much stock in that. (Recall, this memory is from the 1979-1980
school year, and its reliability should be assessed based on that.)

My mom, who has been cooking and occasionally burning her hands for
decades, has a much higher tolerance than I do -- never mind than I did
back when my skin was softer.

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             Here is the test to find whether your mission
mi...@aishdas.org        on Earth is finished:
http://www.aishdas.org   if you're alive, it isn't.
Fax: (270) 514-1507                        - Richard Bach


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