Avodah Mailing List

Volume 38: Number 95

Fri, 13 Nov 2020

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Message: 1
From: Rich, Joel
Date: Wed, 11 Nov 2020 07:37:13 +0000
[Avodah] yishtadel (Try?)

Rabbi Y. Sacks notes that the targum for "vayeavek" (as in "vayeavek Ish
Ito")[struggle] is vishtadel[try] I see that other meforshim there focus on
the intensity of the struggle. Worth keeping in mind when thinking of
Yishtadel to daven with a minyan (ongoing, intense effort?) [the other
places this term appears in S"A are Shabbat preparations and finding the
right wife]
Joel Rich

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Message: 2
From: Akiva Miller
Date: Wed, 11 Nov 2020 08:11:57 -0500
Re: [Avodah] Is there a mitzvah to wear tzitzis at night?

According to how the OU explained the position of Rosh and Rabenu Tam: If
daytime clothes must always have tzitzis (even at night) and nighttime
clothes never need tzitzis (even during the day), then tzitzis seems to be
very similar to mezuzah. In both cases, a whole list of technical criteria
will determine whether or not the object needs this thing attached to it.

In the case of tzitzis, the garment needs to have four corners, and be a
daytime garment, and several other things, and if it meets all the criteria
then it needs tzitzis. But if it fails any of those tests then it is exempt.

In the case of mezuza, the doorway needs to have a post on the right side,
and be a permanent dwelling, and several other things, and if it meets all
the criteria then it needs a mezuza. But if it fails any of those tests
then it is exempt.

So, according to Rosh and Rabenu Tam, Tzitzis should be no different from
Mezuza as regards Zman Grama. I find this surprising because in actual
practice we do exempt women from tzitzis. And not merely from the
requirement to wear tzitzis, but even to the point of allowing them to wear
four-cornered garments that lack tzitzis.

Which part did I get wrong?

Akiva Miller
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Message: 3
From: Prof. L. Levine
Date: Wed, 11 Nov 2020 13:56:47 +0000
[Avodah] May one wear a tallis at night? Also, if one took

From today's OU Kosher Halacha Yomis

Q. May one wear a tallis at night? Also, if one took off a tallis katan at night, can it be put it back on?

A. The Rema writes that if one put on a tallis at night, a beracha is not
recited, because there is a dispute whether the mitzvah applies at night.
The Mishnah Berurah (18:4) cites the Bach who writes that when wearing a
tallis gadol (the tallis worn for davening) in the late afternoon, such as
on Tisha B?av, it should be removed before nightfall. Otherwise, it might
appear that the person intends to fulfill the mitzvah of tzitzis at night.
Why will it matter if people have that impression? Teshuvos Ish Matzliach
(1:15) explains that if one intends to fulfill the mitzvah at night it
would be a violation of Bal Tosif (adding to a mitzvah) according to the
Rambam who maintains there is no mitzvah at night. If one follows this
explanation, it would appear that it is not permissible to put on a tallis
katan (the small talis) at night after it was removed. Although one who is
wearing a tallis katan need not remove it in the evening, that is because
it is common to wear the tallis katan th
 e entire day and not bother to change. However, putting a tallis katan back on at night indicates a desire to perform the mitzvah.

Rav Moshe Feinstein (Igeros Moshe YD 2:137) offers a different explanation
of the Bach. He writes that if one wears a tallis at night, it will give
the impression that a beracha must be said. According to Rav Moshe, this
concern would not apply to a tallis katan that was removed and then put
back on (since a bracha is not recited on a tallis katan that is put back
on during the day). Rav Moshe concludes that although there is no issur to
put a tallis katan back on at night, it is unnecessary, and it would be
preferable to not do so.

The Bach points out that on Yom Kippur the minhag is to wear a tallis
during Ma?ariv because we wear a tallis on Yom Kippur to resemble the
angels, and not to fulfill the mitzvah of tzitzis. It is also true that a
shaliach tzibur may wear a talis at night, since this is done for the honor
of the tzibbur, and not for the mitzvah of tzitzis.

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Message: 4
From: Prof. L. Levine
Date: Wed, 11 Nov 2020 14:24:27 +0000
[Avodah] The Significance of Avraham Avinu?s Performance of

From https://seforimblog.com/2020/11/the-significance-of-avraham-avinus-performance-of-the-mitzvot/

This supposition that man can achieve perfection through belief in Jesus of
Nazareth, as well as the belief that Jesus of Nazareth became a prophet[12]
lacking the necessary Halachic requirements, is an intentional distortion
and outright rejection of the fundamentals of the Torah, as explained
above. Their main proof from the Torah: the statement that Avraham was
righteous, and the statement ?All the families of the earth shall bless
themselves by you? Bereshit 12:3), were used as examples of one who lived
before Matan Torah, and yet had the ability to achieve spiritual
completeness without the performance of the mitzvot. In a direct refutation
of these distortions, the Talmud states emphatically: Avraham performed and
fulfilled all the mitzvot in the Torah, which include the Written Torah and
the Oral Torah. The Talmud brings a proof for this assertion from the
verse: ??? ??? ??? ????? ???? ?????? ?????? ????? ????? ? [Because Avraham
obeyed My voice and observed My mishmarti, My c
 ommandments, My decrees, and My Torah] (Bereshit 26:5). The achievement of
 completeness and perfection of Avraham Avinu would not have been possible
 without the performance of the same mitzvot given at Matan Torah. Since
 before Matan Torah the only obligation for man was the fulfillment of the
 seven Noahide commandments, Avraham?s knowledge of the complete Torah and
 the mitzvot could only have been realized through prophecy, as explained
 and defined by the Rishonim.[13] The Talmud specifically references
 Avraham because the proof offered for this antinomic argument only
 mentions Avraham, and does not mention Yitzchak or Yaakov. It is probable
 that this issue was a prevalent theological debate of that era.14
 Therefore, besides being a testimony of Avraham?s religious devotion and
 adherence to the mitzvot, the Talmud?s statement as to Avraham?s
 fulfillment of the entire Torah was a theological declaration as to the
 necessity of Matan Torah and the function of the mitzvot. And, consequ
 ently to categorically dismiss and deny what contemporary and current detractors of the Torah were and are teaching.

See the above URL for the entire article.  YL
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Message: 5
From: Isaac Balbin
Date: Thu, 12 Nov 2020 16:20:40 +1100
Re: [Avodah] Crown Heights Rav's Psak On Voting In Church

> On Fri, Nov 06, 2020 at 01:32:58PM +0000, Prof. L. Levine forwarded to
> Areivim from
> <https://www.theyeshivaworld.com/news/headlines-breaking-stories/1916361>: 
>> Residents of Crown Heights are facing a halachic issue on Tuesday as
>> their voting booth station is in a local church...

>> Rav Yosef Braun, the Rav of Crown Heights, paskened this week that voting
>> in a church is only permissible when the actual voting booth is in a room
>> that does not serve as the prayer room since it is then apparent to all
>> that the purpose of entering the room is not for prayer. Furthermore,
>> it is only permissible if there is no other option.

Indeed. That brought back memories of when I was allocated a lecture
theatre for my lectures at the back of a church. The entrance was
through the front door and via the Church. I advised the University
that I would not lecture there unless there was a back entrance, and
they opened up such an entrance for me. The Church was prominent and
in the Central Business District and I certainly didn?t want to be seen
going through the front door given that most would not be aware that the
Church had a hall at the back which they were renting to the University
for commercial reasons.

"The student of Torah is like the amnesia victim who tries to reconstruct
from fragments the beautiful world he once experienced. By learning Torah,
man returns to his own self." - Rav Yosef Dov HaLevi Soloveitchik

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Message: 6
From: Micha Berger
Date: Thu, 12 Nov 2020 13:03:15 -0500
Re: [Avodah] Is there a mitzvah to wear tzitzis at night?

On Wed, Nov 11, 2020 at 08:11:57AM -0500, Akiva Miller via Avodah wrote:
> In the case of tzitzis, the garment needs to have four corners, and be a
> daytime garment, and several other things, and if it meets all the criteria
> then it needs tzitzis. But if it fails any of those tests then it is exempt.

As I said on the 9th in response to RYL posting about an OU email on
the subject (same email? same series?)... I HIGHLY recommend seeing the
AhS's discussion of the machloqes. OC 18:1-8

If you missed my post of then, it's at

In se'if 1, he cites the Rosh (reish Hil' Tzitzis) that the fact the
clothing is determined by time is enough to qualify as hazeman gerama.

(I would also recommend joining AhS Yomi. We're about to begin
Oz veHadar's vol II, so it's a good time to get started. See
http://aishdas.org/ahs-yomi for a schedule and other tools (including
RYGB's daily shiur, for those who need / want one), and there is
a Facebook group if you want to be in contact with others on the
program. It's an average of 1,100 words a day, which comes to 15-20 min
for most people. RYGB's YouTube shiurim usually come in at just above 20.
You get to be someone who is meshaneh halakhos bekhol yom AND have some
intellectual "fun" of learning halakhah-as-process rather than as a list
of rulings.)

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger                 Never must we think that the Jewish element
http://www.aishdas.org/asp   in us could exist without the human element
Author: Widen Your Tent      or vice versa.
- https://amzn.to/2JRxnDF                   - Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch

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Message: 7
From: Micha Berger
Date: Thu, 12 Nov 2020 13:08:05 -0500
Re: [Avodah] chochma on hold:

On Tue, Oct 20, 2020 at 11:02:20PM +0000, Rich, Joel via Avodah wrote:
> From a book review:
> > You will not find here comparative analyses of the various approaches:
> > "Torah Only" versus "Torah im Derech Eretz" versus "Torah Umadda."...

KMTT podcast just sent out some talks given at Gush by R/Dr/Lord Jonathan
Sacks on the topic of how to find holiness after the gap year for those
returning to college.

His model is that one goes to university to learn what is univeral --
chokhmah bagoyim taamin.

You got to yeshiva and learn after yeshiva to internalize the Torah that
is particular to the human being.

The only way to perfect creation, to bring ge'ulah to the world, is by
fusing both. Similarly, you need rabbanim who not only know a lot of
Torah, but know how to bring that Torah to day-to-day life. And so one's
job in university is to learn the world with an eye to figuring out how
to enfuse it with Torah.

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger                 Live as if you were living already for the
http://www.aishdas.org/asp   second time and as if you had acted the first
Author: Widen Your Tent      time as wrongly as you are about to act now!
- https://amzn.to/2JRxnDF          - Victor Frankl, Man's search for Meaning

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Message: 8
From: Sholom Simon
Date: Fri, 13 Nov 2020 09:13:58 -0500
Re: [Avodah] simple eruv question

Just an FYI: on Eruvin 94, R Rosner made the following comment in his daf
yomi shiur:

What is the lomdus of pi tikra?  Some rishonim say it is just a fancy form
of gud achis; they put them together, even though the gemara doesn't put
them together.  Others say, they are different, that maybe it's just a din
of havdalah.  Meaning: you're not creating any type of structure by pi
tikra, you're just creating enough to be mavdil the reshuyos, which would
not be good enough, e.g., for a sukkah, where you need walls

(Somewhat uncharacteristically, he didn't actually name any of the rishonim
or give sources for that statement.  That might have been because it was
right at the very end of the shiur and he was running out of time -- or
that he just wanted to slip in some general comments before moving on).

Good shabbos!

-- Sholom

On Sun, Oct 25, 2020 at 1:51 PM Micha Berger <mi...@aishdas.org> wrote:

> On Sat, Oct 24, 2020 at 10:04:12PM -0400, Sholom Simon wrote:
> > Take a bridge that goes over a local road.  Can we say that the side of
> the
> > bridge (presuming it is straight) forms a mechitza, and we extend
> downward
> > via gud achis?  Or do we say pi tiqra because we treat the bridge like a
> > roof?  (I think you are explaining this, but I don't fully get it).
> Assuming the bridge has some kind of support running along the side to
> invoke gud achis, I would think both are in play. But you don't need that
> support to qualify as a mechitzah, since pi tiqra would would on its own.
> Tir'u baTov!
> -Micha
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