Avodah Mailing List

Volume 35: Number 133

Sat, 25 Nov 2017

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Message: 1
From: Professor L. Levine
Date: Tue, 21 Nov 2017 14:25:15 +0000
[Avodah] Notes on RSRH's Philosopy of Judaism

Please see the pdf file at


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Message: 2
From: Micha Berger
Date: Tue, 21 Nov 2017 08:54:15 -0500
Re: [Avodah] T'hay

On Sat, Nov 18, 2017 at 10:23:18PM -0500, Akiva Miller via Avodah wrote:
: There is a word spelled tav-heh-aleph, pronounced "t'hay". Is this
: word Hebrew or Aramaic?

Sidenote, just to complicate things. Assuming that when someone with the
last name "Miller" speaks of what he finds "in my siddur" is looking in
an Ashkenazi one...

RSM found in manuscripts that earlier Ashkenazi siddurim honed much
closer to leshon Chazal than we do. The example I usually cite is
"vesein chleqeinu beSorasakh, sab'einu mituvakh..." as Sepharadim have it.

Your siddur probably consistently has "Sha'atah", not "she'atah".
This is a "correction" to the form that appears in seifer Sofetim.

One holdover is "Modim anachnu Lakh", instead of "Lekha"... but then
followed by "Sha'atah".

It appears to be largely the work of one person, R' Shelomo Zalman Hanau
(Katz), author of the Binyan Shalomo. He then compiles a siddur, Shaarei
Tefillah. R' Yaaqov Emden's Lueach Eresh is a rebuttal of the Razah's
grammatical theories, and kedarko beqodesh, he doesn't pull punches.
For example, the Binyan Shelomo was printed with a hasqamah from R'
Tzvi Ashkenazi; RYE wrote that his father's hasqamah was forged.

The Alter Rebbe, in composing Nusach haAri, was heavily influenced by
the Razah's theory of diqduq.

And slowly other Ashkenazim switched from leshon Chazal to leshon Tanakh.
Even RZBaer and the Yekkes.

So, with a siddur that is partially in one version of Hebrew and partially
in another, who knows how any word settled on one set of diqduq rules
or the other.

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             "I hear, then I forget; I see, then I remember;
mi...@aishdas.org        I do, then I understand." - Confucius
http://www.aishdas.org   "Hearing doesn't compare to seeing." - Mechilta
Fax: (270) 514-1507      "We will do and we will listen." - Israelites

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Message: 3
From: Rabbi Meir G. Rabi
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 2017 10:38:02 +1100
[Avodah] Kosher meat must have all traces of blood removed

I am happy to amend to
Before cooking, Kosher meat must have all traces of blood removed


Meir G. Rabi

0423 207 837
+61 423 207 837
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Message: 4
From: Prof. Levine
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 2017 09:20:47 -0500
[Avodah] Sedra Toldos - Balance, When Parents Favour One

At 10:52 AM 11/21/2017, R Micha Berger wrote:

>Perhaps this is the whole point of the Torah's not saying why Rivqa
>preferred Yaaqov. Yitzchaq's additional love of Esav was teluyah bedavar,
>and that fact impacted Eisav's choices. Rivqa love Yaaqov, full stop,
>not for some reason.

I suggest you read RSRH's essay

 From Jacob and Esau (Collected Writings VII)

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Message: 5
From: Rich, Joel
Date: Thu, 23 Nov 2017 05:54:08 +0000
[Avodah] sefer torah's path

From R' Aviner: Bringing the Torah to People to Kiss
Q: Is it permissible to bring the Sefer Torah in the Shul towards people who want to kiss it?
A: No. This is a disgrace to the Sefer Torah. They should approach the Sefer Torah. Piskei Teshuvot 134:6.

I have been to more than a few shuls that particularly on Shabbat take the
long road - any ideas on who they are relying on? (not to mention those who
lower the sefer torah so the kids can kiss it too)

Joel Rich

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Message: 6
From: Marty Bluke
Date: Sat, 25 Nov 2017 22:27:38 +0200
[Avodah] How can R' Yochanan and Resh Lakish argue about the

The Gemara in Makos(14b) has a dispute between R' Yochanan and Resh Lakish
which revolves around a gezera shava. R' Yochanan has the gezera shava and
Resh Lakish does not, Rashi explains that Resh Lakish did not get this
gezera shava from his rebbeim.

This seems very difficult because the gemara in Bava Metzia (84a) describes
how Resh Lakish was the head of a group of bandits and R' Yochanan
persuaded hm to learn Torah and was clearly Rabo Muvhak. In fact, they were
so close that after Resh Lakish's death, R' Yochanan lost his mind and
died. Given this, how can it be that R' Yochanan had a gezera shava and
Resh Lakish didn't because lo kiblu merabo, R' Yochanan was his Rebbe so
why wouldn't R' Yochanan have taught him this gezera shava? R' Yochanan
clearly had a kabbala on this gezera shava so why wouldn't his talmid
muvhak Resh Lakish have gotten this kabbala from his rebbe? The answer
can't be that Resh Lakish argued on this because gezera shava's are a
kabbala from your rebbe, period.
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Message: 7
From: Professor L. Levine
Date: Thu, 23 Nov 2017 23:55:59 +0000
[Avodah] More on Yaakov, sheep and the rods

The following is from RSRH's commentary on Bereishis  30:37

Ya'akov then took for himself rods of fresh aspen and hazelnut and chestnut trees, and peeled
white streaks in them by uncovering the white on the rods.

After all this, Ya'akov's initiative with the rods would have been fully
justified, even had it constituted a tried and tested expedient - a supposition
that surely will not be borne out by experiment.
From the continuation of the story we know that Lavan altered the
terms of the agreement ten times (see below, 31:7), setting new conditions
regarding the form of the speckles and spots. It is difficult to
assume that, because of a general action such as setting up the rods in
the sight of the sheep, the sheep would bring forth young that were
this time speckled, the next time spotted, and the next time marked on
the feet. Ya'akov's success can be attributed only to a special intervention
of Divine providence - as attested to by Ya'akov himself. The expedient
of the rods was only an extremely weak substitute for the breeding
animals Lavan had wrongfully removed. Nevertheless, Ya'akov did not
refrain from seeking the aid of this expedient; since ain somchin al haness (see
Pesachim 64b), he was obligated to do his part.
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