Avodah Mailing List

Volume 30: Number 55

Sun, 03 Jun 2012

< Previous Next >
Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Message: 1
From: "Elazar M. Teitz" <r...@juno.com>
Date: Sun, 3 Jun 2012 06:00:43 GMT
Re: [Avodah] Would Ruth's conversion be rejected today?

    . To my citation of the Mishna in Yevamos 24b that "Hanitan . . . al hanochris
 v'nisgaira, harei zeh lo yichnos,"  RZev Sero responded:

<That's "hanit`an".  If he marries her then he will confirm the rumours.
But ma`asim bechol yom that someone who is not just nit`an but vadai
bo`el aramis marries her when she converts.  The chiluk seems to me that
where he was publicly married to her there's no cheshad to dispel; it's
confirmed public knowledge and there's no point in trying to evade it.
(I'd even suggest that a nit`an can marry her if he's willing to publicly
acknowledge and renounce his avera.)>

     However, the Beis Yosef in EH, end of siman 11, quotes the Nimukei
     Yosef  that the din of lo yichnos applies not only to rumors, but even
     if is a known fact that they cohabited; his source is an explicit
     Tosefta (Perek 4, Halacha 5), which reads "haba al hanochris," rather
     than "hanitan."  The Beis Shmuel cites it as well, in s.k. 17.  No
     differing opinion is cited.


Go to top.

Message: 2
From: Ben Waxman <ben1...@zahav.net.il>
Date: Sun, 03 Jun 2012 18:53:12 +0300
[Avodah] Rav Melamed's position on Giyus

Rav Melemad's name has come up from time to time as a proof that even DL
rabbis accept the idea that Talmud Torah (TT) overrides giyus.  Since he
wrote an article in this week's B'Sheva on the subject, I thought it
appropriate to summarize what he wrote. In short, while he does accept
that in today's world TT can serve as a reason to defer serving in the
Zahal, he view is much more nuanced than what I just wrote.

1) Ikkar Hadin, everyone has to serve, period.
2) No, there is no patur for people learning and Rav Melamed cites that
students of Yehoshua and David left their studies and fought. (Note: He
doesn't mention at all the "patur" of Shevet Levi; mashma that he
doesn't believe that such a patur exists).
3) The Gemara in BB stating that talmidei chachamim don't have to pay
for shmira is dealing with theft, not hazalat nefashot. (Note: given the
way that hundreds of thousands of people, , including yeshiva boys and
rabbanim, fled the north during Lebanon 2 I doubt that anyone believes
that gemara).
4) TT is the most important mitzvah of all and there is a need to find a
way to have people learning and growing in Torah.
5) If there is enough manpower to fill the army's needs, than yeshiva
students should continue learning (if there isn't enough, like in
Milchemet Hashichrur, than they have to fight).  The dichui for learning
is on condition that said students give respect to soldiers.
6) TT only defers service in Tzahal, it doesn't give a patur. And the
deferral lasts only as long as the student is growing and advancing,
7) There is enough manpower today to meet the army's needs.
8) The general avoidance of the Chareidim to serve, while possibly
tolerable from a defense standpoint, is a disaster from a national
standpoint (as is the secular refusal to do mitzvot),
9) Ein lanu (note: I don't know who he is including in the lanu) any
disagreement with the Chareidi world in regards to the need to defer
(again defer) army service for yeshiva students who are going to be
rabbanim and educators.  However, if someone wants to be a teacher, a
dichui of several years is enough, while someone wanting to be a rav
should get a longer dichui.  However it is clear that most people
registered in Chareidi yeshivot don't fall into those categories. Some
of these guys learn well, some barely learn. Those who learn well should
go into something like Hesder, those who don't learn well should do the
full three years.
10) In his last paragraphs, Rav Melamed takes off his gloves.  The real
reason why guys who don't have a future as teachers or rabbanim stay out
of the army is simply because it is much comfortable to not go in (no
worries about dieing in wars and all that). Plus, serving in the army
exposes students to an environment which could cause them to lower their
moral levels or leave the religion entirely.

So while I have problems with some of his points, it is clear that Rav
Melamed does not in any way support the general deferment given to
anyone learning in yeshiva, and certainly not the deferment given to
anyone merely signed up in yeshiva. It would be interesting to know if
there are students in his yeshiva that he advised to stop learning and
go serve.

Go to top.

Message: 3
From: "Simi Peters" <famil...@actcom.net.il>
Date: Sun, 3 Jun 2012 20:39:07 +0300
[Avodah] "yibum" in Bereshit, Rut, and Devarim

The Malbim has a nice analysis of this in his perush laTorah on Sefer Devarim.  He distinguishes between the three cases.  Worth learning through.

Kol tuv,
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.aishdas.org/pipermail/avod

Go to top.

Message: 4
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Date: Sun, 3 Jun 2012 14:16:28 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Would Ruth's conversion be rejected today?

RRW's recent blog post
had me wondering....

What if Orpah and Rus are child brides, who were giyoros qetanos and
therefore qabbalas ol mitzvos would be years later?

Tir'u baTov!

Go to top.

Message: 5
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Date: Sun, 3 Jun 2012 14:28:20 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Bene Israel of India

On Thu, May 31, 2012 at 01:31:53AM +0000, kennethgmil...@juno.com wrote:
: I have long wondered this very question, especially in regard to
: the Jews of Ethiopia, but also in regard to the Bene Israel and all
: similar groups.

: The egalitarian in me winces when I smell a presumption that the Mesorah
: of these other groups is pasul...

There are points of assymetry, though:

1- Population does matter -- acharei rabim and all that.

2- We are the children of those who had the last Sanhedrin. We are
following a development based on a later snapshot of the halakhah as
binding on everyone.

3- We are relying on their mesorah to even say they're Israelites, and
there is a real rei'usa to make it a valid question. I think there is
a circularity to relying on their mesorah to say they're Israelites, and
relying on they're being Israelites to give weight to their mesorah.

4- We're talking about people who lost the original Hebrew Tanakh in
any form, as well as most mitzvos. (In the case of the Bene Israel,
at the time the Baghdadim fled to India, in the case of the Ethiopians,
until integration into Israei society.) I don't see how we can compare
mesoros, given that theirs have such large provable holes.

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             Never must we think that the Jewish element
mi...@aishdas.org        in us could exist without the human element
http://www.aishdas.org   or vice versa.
Fax: (270) 514-1507                     - Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch

Go to top.

Message: 6
From: "Prof. Levine" <llev...@stevens.edu>
Date: Sun, 03 Jun 2012 14:00:38 -0400
[Avodah] If there is no Torah there is no Derekh-Eretz, and

The following is from Mordechai Breuer's The TIDE of RSRH.

There is no doubt
concerning Hirsch's sincere hope that his system would spread
to wherever Jews were striving to raise their children to live a
Torah life and as long as there was a conflict between Torah
education and the spirit of the time. He had declared on many
occasions that he saw in Torah-im-Derekh-Eretz the only salvation
for the future of the nation. Upon his arrival in Moravia,
where he held the office of Chief Rabbi, he never ceased his
striving in the spirit of his conception, and his failure in this
respect was one of the main reasons for his resigning that post.
In a circular which he sent to the communities before his departure,
he explicitly warned them:

"Neither should you lend your ears to those that alienate themselves
from life and science, believing that Judaism must fear
them as its worst enemies. They are mistaken in believing that
Judaism and all that is holy to it can only be saved by shutting
off the sanctuary of Israel within its four walls and by locking the
door against any gust of the fresh wind of life, or any beam of
the light of science. Listen only to the voice of our Sages (who
said): If there is no Torah there is no Derekh-Eretz, and if there
is no Derekh-Eretz, there is no Torah."

If anyone is interested in reading this pamphlet,  please let me know 
and I will send you a link to it. YL

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.aishdas.org/pipermail/avod

Go to top.

Message: 7
From: Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org>
Date: Sun, 3 Jun 2012 10:06:48 -0400
[Avodah] Scholarship, Mesorah, and the Misisng nun of Ashrei

On Thu, May 31, 2012 at 03:18:34PM -0700, Daniel M. Israel wrote to Areivim:
: [C]onsider for example, the Ashrei. It is an acrostic, but "missing" the
: line starting with "nun." The "most likely" explanation, favored AFAIK
: by secular scholars, is that the line existed and was dropped at some
: point due to a scribal error. IIRC, this explanation got further support
: when a variant text was found (in the Dead Sea Scrolls, perhaps?) that
: did have a line for "nun." 

: Of course, the major meforshim say that
: David HaMelech left that line out deliberately. And even the variant
: text could be explained by reveresing the reasoning: perhaps a scribe
: noticing the "missing" line took it upon himself to compose one. The
: point is, even if you conclude that the first explanation, the one of
: the historians, makes more sense, that doesn't mean that it is right....

The Septuagint has a nun line, but it looks like a translation of a
sentence starting "ne'eman". And there is the scroll RDMI refers to, 11PQs-a
where we have something that could well be what the LXX translated,
but it is almost exactly like the tzadi line: Ne'eman Hashem bekhol
ma'asav... It's not overly convincing; we don't need to assume a creative
scribe filling in a hole. It's more likely a copiest who expected the
line to be there accidentally mistranscribed, producing a whole new
tradition for sectarians to use.

RGS posts a quote from R' Prof Sholom Carmy
    How seriously can one take this interpretation at the peshat (simple
    meaning) level? Is it likely that the author of a twenty-two-line
    poem would deliberately breach the poetic form of the composition in
    order to make a subtle point that is likely to be lost on the casual
    reader? Is R. Yohanan not reading an idea into the text that has no
    purchase on the text?

    This issue was far from my mind the day I read W.H. Auden's
    "Atlantis." The poem, comprising seven twelve-line stanzas, which
    exhibit a complicated pattern of rhyme and meter, describes the
    effort and resourcefulness required to reach the mythical islan
    of Atlantis. The voyage culminates in a scene where the traveler,
    having overcome many ordeals, collapses: "With all Atlantis shining/
    Below you yet you cannot/ Descend." At this precise point in the
    poem, the rigid pattern is violated: line 7 of stanza 6 does not
    exist. The explanation seems obvious: the poet's "failure" to fully
    satisfy the complicated technical feat he has undertaken parallels
    the failure of the poem's protagonist to consummate his journey. The
    intertwining of form and content in the work of a twentieth-century
    master craftsman renders more persuasive the notion of a similar
    phenomenon in the psalm.

: I will leave aside the question of
: whether one could side with the historians in this particular case and
: still fall withing the realm of the mesorah. There are many more similar
: examples to be found, I just picked one that is particularly
: straightforward. Fundementally the job of the secualar historian and the
: Torah Jew differ here, the former is obliged to put forward the most
: reasonable explanation of the evidence, while we have a different
: obligation. 

Tir'u baTov!

PS: Extra credit to anyone who recognizes this signature quote!

Micha Berger                     .S.
mi...@aishdas.org             .S. A .S.
http://www.aishdas.org         X  M  Y
Fax: (270) 514-1507

Go to top.

Message: 8
From: Zev Sero <z...@sero.name>
Date: Sun, 03 Jun 2012 18:34:06 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Would Ruth's conversion be rejected today?

On 3/06/2012 2:00 AM, Elazar M. Teitz wrote:
>  However, the Beis Yosef in EH, end of siman 11, quotes the Nimukei
>  Yosef  that the din of lo yichnos applies not only to rumors, but
>  even if is a known fact that they cohabited; his source is an
>  explicit Tosefta (Perek 4, Halacha 5), which reads "haba al
>  hanochris," rather than "hanitan."  The Beis Shmuel cites it as well,
>  in s.k. 17.  No differing opinion is cited.

1. See Chochmas Shlomo al asar.  He gives a lot of references to other
places in which he explained it at length, but I have not followed
them up.  But I was mechaven to what he says here.

2. Re the BY quoting the Nimukei Yosef, I haven't yet looked it up, but
a general note: I have reason to believe, based on a completely unrelated
instance, that the BY did not have access to the NY, and his quotes are
either second-hand or remembered from a time when he did have access.
Was it in print in his day?

Zev Sero        "Natural resources are not finite in any meaningful
z...@sero.name    economic sense, mind-boggling though this assertion
                  may be. The stocks of them are not fixed but rather
                 are expanding through human ingenuity."
                                            - Julian Simon

Go to top.

Message: 9
From: Harvey Benton <harvw...@yahoo.com>
Date: Sun, 3 Jun 2012 14:48:31 -0700 (PDT)
[Avodah] yaarog v' al.....how many? and why?

medicine and halacha......
i read that 

the rambam holds certain
groups (sadducees??/apikorsim,) etc, 

to be chayav mitah??
ami i misquoting, or is that his 

shita, and why? since it is not one? of the
3 yaareg v' al yaavors.....
i recall Micha mentioned a few others
?like chilul Hashem......


----- Forwarded Message -----
From: jcr <j.wei...@j-c-r.org>
To: Undisclosed-Recipi...@yahoo.com 
Sent: Thursday, May 31, 2012 1:47 PM
Subject: Fw:

Dear Friend,
????? Attached please find 
our latest update and bulletin. I hope you find it informative and 
?Warmest personal wishes,
?Yaakov Weiner
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.aishdas.org/pipermail/avodah-ai
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: Drasha Mispatim bulletin 13.doc
Type: application/msword
Size: 91136 bytes
Desc: not available
URL: <http://lists.aishdas.org/pipermail/avodah-ai


Avodah mailing list

End of Avodah Digest, Vol 30, Issue 55

Send Avodah mailing list submissions to

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

You can reach the person managing the list at

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

< Previous Next >