Avodah Mailing List

Volume 38: Number 80

Thu, 01 Oct 2020

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Message: 1
From: elazar teitz
Date: Sun, 27 Sep 2020 16:32:06 -0400
Re: [Avodah] What will be with Simchas Torah

The comment was made, "Is this "completion of the Torah" necessarily
referring to the public laining in shul each Shabbos morning? Can it
possibly refer just as well to our private learning of the parshios, such
as those who learned the parsha each week by reading it themselves from a
chumash while the shuls were closed?
Granted that such learning was not an actual chiyuv, . . ."

It isn't? See OC 385:1.

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Message: 2
From: Prof. L. Levine
Date: Tue, 29 Sep 2020 12:08:16 +0000
[Avodah] Is an Esrog Muktza on Shabbos

From today's OU kosher Halacha Yomis

Q. This year, the first day of Sukkos is Shabbos, and there is no mitzvah of lulav and esrog. Can I show my neighbor my beautiful esrog, or is it muktza?

Q. Shulchan Aruch (OC 658:2) writes that a lulav is muktzah on Shabbos.
Since there is no mitzvah of lulav and esrog on Shabbos, a lulav serves no
purpose, and it is mukztah like other tree branches. However, an esrog may
be moved, since it has a function; one may smell the fruit. (There is a
dispute if the beracha on fragrances is recited when smelling an esrog on
Sukkos, since the primary function of an esrog on Sukkos is for the mitzvah
of lulav and esrog and not for fragrance. To avoid the uncertainty of
reciting a beracha, the Shulchan Aruch recommends not smelling an esrog on
Sukkos. Nonetheless the Mishnah Berurah (658:5) writes there is no
restriction to smell an esrog on Shabbos and recite a beracha, because
there is no mitzvah on that day.) Since, it has a function, it is not
muktza, and it may be moved for any purpose. However, Rav Shlomo Zalman
Auerbach zt?l (Shmiras Shabbos K?Hilchaso 22: note 62) writes that today,
since people are protective of their esrogim and will n
 ot pass them around to be smelled, they are categorized as ?muktza machmas
 chisaron kis? (expensive or delicate items that are generally stored in a
 safe location), which may not be moved for any reason on Shabbos. The
 Aruch Hashulchan (OC 308:17) appears to rule this way as well.

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Message: 3
From: Akiva Miller
Date: Wed, 30 Sep 2020 06:05:03 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Announcing Geshem

I have long been bothered by why we cannot start or stop Mashiv Haruach
Umorid Hagashem/geshem without a formal announcement , yet no announcements
at all are required for starting and stopping any of the other changes to
our tefilos.

This past spring, in Avodah 38:24, I quoted a teshuva from Rav Hershel
Schachter, where he tackled this question. (It is titled "Piskei Corona #9:
Hallel on Pesach Night and Tefillas Tal". "Our Rav" refers to Rav JB
Soloveitchik z"l; the parentheses are Rav Schachter's.)

> There is a big difference between She'eila (V'sen Tal Umatar
> Livracha) and Hazkara (Mashiv Haruach). See what I wrote in
> the name of our Rav in MiPeninei HaRav (section Tefila, number
> 5), that changing the descriptions of Hashem (from Mashiv
> Haruach to Morid Hatal) requires Reshus Hatzibur, and an
> individual is not allowed to make changes on his own.

But I still don't understand what makes Mashiv Haruach so unusual.
According to Rav Schachter's logic, shouldn't we also need Reshus Hatzibur
to change the description of Hashem between HaKeil HaKadosh and HaMelech

Moreover, why is this Reshus Hatzibur required *every* *single* *time* that
we start or stop Mashiv Haruach? Why isn't it sufficient that Chazal
ordained that we start it every year on Shmini Atzeres, and stop it every
year on Pesach?

I once questioned how our Yom Tovim have any d'Oraisa status at all: If
there's no Beis Din to declare that a certain day was Rosh Chodesh Tishrei,
then where does Yom Kippur's status come from? The answer I got (Eliyahu
Kitov, The Book of Our Heritage, v 1 pg 230) was that Hillel's beis din was
mekadesh in *advance* all future Roshei Chadashim that would be calculated
according to his rules. According to this reasoning, the required Reshus
Hatzibur doesn't have to come from the gabbai or the chazan. It comes from
Chazal, who ordained this schedule of changes to the Amidah, so when the
calendar says to make a change, my requirement to do so comes
automatically, whether I'm in shul or not, just like for all the other

Akiva Miller
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Message: 4
From: Rich, Joel
Date: Wed, 30 Sep 2020 19:02:34 +0000
[Avodah] fear of death

Sheldon Solomon is a social psychologist at Skidmore College. He earned his
B.A. from Franklin and Marshall College and his doctoral degree from the
University of Kansas. He is best known for developing terror management
theory, along with Jeff Greenberg and Tom Pyszczynski which is concerned
with how humans deal with their own sense of mortality
Sheldon Solomon - "I feel like there's a real sense in which doing these
studies and writing books and lecturing has been my way of avoiding
directly confronting my anxieties by turning it (me - fear of death) into
an intellectual exercise" [Me - sounds like it could've been said by

Is this a common approach in orthodox circles

Gmar tov
Joel rich

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Message: 5
From: Prof. L. Levine
Date: Wed, 30 Sep 2020 13:10:27 +0000
[Avodah] A Question for Today's Times

From today's OU Kosher Halacha Yomis

Q. May one fulfill the mitzvah of picking up their lulav and esrog while wearing gloves?

A. Shulchan Aruch (OC 651:7) writes that if a person wrapped a cloth around
their hand and picked up the lulav, some say one has not fulfilled the
mitzvah. This is because the cloth is a chatzitza (barrier) between the
hand and the lulav. The Mishnah Berurah (651:33) writes that the same
applies if one is wearing gloves. He also explains that the reason Shulchan
Aruch writes ?some say?, is because this is a matter of dispute among
Rishonim. The opinion of the Ran is that if one wrapped their hands with
cloth or put on gloves, the cloth is viewed as an extension of one?s hand,
and as such, it is not a barrier. Therefore, if one did pick up the lulav
while wearing gloves, the lulav should be lifted again to fulfill the
mitzvah in accordance with those who view the glove as a chatziza. However,
a new beracha would not be said because the mitzvah was already fulfilled
according to the Ran. One who must wear gloves in shul should recite the
berachos and shake the lulav at home before comi
 ng to shul.

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Message: 6
From: Micha Berger
Date: Thu, 1 Oct 2020 16:32:40 -0400
Re: [Avodah] fear of death

On Wed, Sep 30, 2020 at 07:02:34PM +0000, Rich, Joel via Avodah wrote:
> Sheldon Solomon - "I feel like there's a real sense in which doing
> these studies and writing books and lecturing has been my way of avoiding
> directly confronting my anxieties by turning it (me - fear of death)
> into an intellectual exercise" [Me - sounds like it could've been said
> by R'Chaim]

> Is this a common approach in orthodox circles

I prefer the dialog version of the Mesilas Yesharim, even though the
chapter version that is more widely available was the Ramchal's final

In the dialog version, the ideas are framed as a discussion by two
friends who meet after a very long absence -- the Chakham and the
Chassid. The Chakham shares my habit of not dealing with the emotions
or applicability of ideas by analyzing them to depth in the abstact.
It's much easier to analyze what yir'ah means in relation to pachad
and eimah, or yir'as hacheit vs yir'as haromemus vs yir'as ha'onesh,
or whether there is a difference in connotation between yir'as Shamayim
and yir'as Hashem. Much easier than it is to spend time actually trying
to become more of a yarei Shamayim.

And I think I am far from alone in falling into that trap.

Is that related enough to what you're asking for our opinions about?

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger                 Our greatest fear is not that we're inadequate,
http://www.aishdas.org/asp   Our greatest fear is that we're powerful
Author: Widen Your Tent      beyond measure
- https://amzn.to/2JRxnDF                      - Anonymous

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Message: 7
From: Micha Berger
Date: Thu, 1 Oct 2020 16:57:19 -0400
Re: [Avodah] What Will be with Simchas Torah?

On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 11:37:44PM +0100, Chana Luntz via Avodah wrote:
> I suppose the reason it seems to me obvious that mishum simcha, means the
> simcha of Yom Tov, is because:
> a) when the poskim say something is meshum simcha in the context of yom tov,
> they mean the mitzvah of simcha ...

This is the crux of our difference in understanding. You're using a general
rule about "mishum simchah" in texts about hilkhos YT.

I'm using the se'if's first mention of simchah, or at least "semeichin",
as the context by which I understood all further mentions of simchah.

> b) I have not seen (and don't expect to see) a distinction made between an
> avel doing hakafos with the lulav, and an avel doing hakafos on simchas
> Torah.  But if they have completely different bases, then that discussion
> would need to be had.

OTOH, if simchas YT were the reason for all of the minhagim of Simchas
Torah, why aren't we dancing with the Torah on all chagim? Or at least
on Zeman Matan Toraseinu?

You see hakafos with the lulav as mishum simchah to begin with? "Anah H'
hoshia na?" I think I just don't understand what you're trying to say.

> So I suppose it seems to me obvious that all the heterim the Rema refers to
> cannot be because of the simcha of the siyum, especially as the heterim were
> in place before the siyum was necessarily happening, historically, which
> again seems to suggest that the one does not cause the other.

Huh? The universality of finishing veZos haBerakhah on Shemini Atzeres,
Yom Tov sheini if you're in chu"l was WELL before minhagim about hakafos
with the Torah, never mind hakafos at night, giving all the men aliyos,
and then also the older boys, hakafos at night, leining at night (where

Again, I must not be understanding what you're trying to say.

> I do see that in fact the Aruch HaShulchan seems to support you, as in Orech
> Chaim siman 669 si'if 2 he says in the middle of the piece:  "And also we
> are accustomed that two are called up together and bless, and even though it
> is not correct in any event because of the joy of the siyum they do so ." -
> whereas I would have thought he should say the joy of Yom Tov.  So the Aruch
> HaShulchan would seem to be supporting your position.

Possibly the source of my first impression, via AhS Yomi.

> > You're assuming the Rama changes topics without telling us.
> Not really.  Given that mishum simcha in the context of a Yom Tov is
> logically understood to mean simchas yom tov...

Whenever people talk about "the ground", they mean on planet earth. Pretty
solid general rule.

But if someone starts a paragraph by saying "When Neal Armstrong left
footprints on the ground of the moon..." What would you assume "the ground"
refers to in the rest of the paragraph?

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger                 We are great, and our foibles are great,
http://www.aishdas.org/asp   and therefore our troubles are great --
Author: Widen Your Tent      but our consolations will also be great.
- https://amzn.to/2JRxnDF                      - Rabbi AY Kook


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