Avodah Mailing List

Volume 07 : Number 025

Monday, April 23 2001

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 12:20:33 -0400
From: "Feldman, Mark" <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
New kasher l'pesach grass/grain

Someone told me that the OU permits a new grass/grain from a different
region of the world (i.e., it's not one of the chamisha minim).  Any
details?  Is the OU assuming that since the grass/grain didn't exist b'zman
hageonim, it's not included in the gezeirah against rice/kitniyos?

Does anyone disagree with the OU?

Kol tuv,

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Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 13:16:58 -0400
From: David Riceman <dr@insight.att.com>
kula shopping


I'm intrigued by the number 0.001% (1 in 100,000) that RYK used,
especially since he emphasised the need for precision in a public forum.
If he means of all Jews that would be around 120. if he means only of
those capable of following RMFs prescription of learning through the
sugyos and rishonim and believing that one can be machria i'd be happy
if there were two or three.

The number is interesting because of the sugya at the beginning of
horayoth, which says that a talmid who is rauy l'horaah and who knows
that sanhewdrin are wrong is considered meizid if he follows their psak.
Clearly he is obliged whenever he thinks he knows the halacha to pasken
for himself (and of course it's assur to pasken for someone else against
the sanhedrin, so this is a source for RMF's distinction). the question
is what, in modern terms, is a talmid who is rauy l'horaah, and how
(in talmudic times) did someone know he attained that status?

The simple answer is RMF's - his teachers told him. Perhaps it's naive
to think that semicha is a version of this. in the gmara's time there
were students ordered by rank studying at the sanhedrin and everyone
knew his rank, so someone knew if he was rauy l'horaah.

Now the numbers. The gmara says that 12 million people (approximately
the same as the whole Jewish population today) appeared at the beis
HaMikdash for pesach in the times of agrippa. Allowing for infants,
the elderly, and people abroad we can probably multiply that by two.
Vast numbers of these people were killed or enslaved during churban
habayith (introduction to eicha rabba), and poverty had considerably
reduced the number of people capable of study (Rambam's hakdamah to the
Mishneh Torah). Yet IIRC the pool of students at the sanhedrin in the
times of Ben Azzai and Ben Zoma (the main characters in the gemara in
horayoth) was around 3 times the number of members of the sanhedrin.

Now RYK could argue that the proportion had changed, but not too much,
since the gemara gives the number 0.1% of those entering school, and
it is not counting girls or slaves or poor children (in a society when
a child could be required to earn his own food at age 6, and an adult
could be expected to work all day just for lunch, this would be a large
proportion of the populace). If we believe the number two or three,
that would not leave enough leeway to fill the requisite students of
the Sanhedrin, and certainly not enough for jews not living in yavneh.

So I guess my question is: is there a list of these two or three or 120
people? How many were there in Talmudic times? How is a normal person
like me to determine if someone is on the list? how busy is his phone
line? (I know this paragraph sounds sarcastic but it's not meant to be.
It's meant to point out practical problems with RYK's opinion).

David Riceman

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Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 13:27:42 -0400
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Structure Of TSBP

On Fri, Apr 20, 2001 at 11:22:38AM -0400, gil.student@citicorp.com wrote:
: Within the Mishnah we know that Rebbe did not initiate the structure.  We know 
: of a "Mishnah Rishonah" and the existence of masechtos (in Gittin 60?) that 
: pre-dated Rebbe.
: IIRC, the frum approach (as defined by RYI HaLevy in his Doros HaRishonim) is 
: that the Anshei Kenesses HaGedolah established a basic Mishnah...

We also know that R' Yehudah was continuing the work of R' Meir, who
was contrinuing the work of R' Akiva. One needn't go all the way back
to AKH to explain these "proofs".

That said, I would assert without proof that the start of mishnaic
learning was with Purim, with "kiymu vikiblu haYhudim". Many divrei
Torah connect this expression with TSBP in particular.

In addition, I am not sure that the Tur's structure was inherently new.
Mitzvos lima'aseh bizman hazeh are covered in four of the sidrei Mishnah,
plus Berachos and Menachos. The Tur just renamed those four sidarim;
mo'ed particularly needed renaming to O"Ch with the addition of hilchos


Micha Berger                 When you come to a place of darkness,
micha@aishdas.org            you do not chase out the darkness with a broom.
http://www.aishdas.org       You light a candle.
(973) 916-0287                  - R' Yekusiel Halberstam of Klausenberg zt"l

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Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 15:29:59 -0400
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Voss Iz Der Chilluk #8: MC vol. 2 p. 136

On Thu, Apr 19, 2001 at 09:09:17AM -0500, Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer wrote:
: The Rambam paskens in Nizkei Mamon 10:7...
:                                                         Since, in the case 
: of a murderer that is a Tereifah there is no death penalty, that halacha 
: pertains to the ox and its owner as well.

One can say that a rotzei'ach who is a tereifah is mei'ikkar hadin
chayav misah. What prevents beis din from killing him is that he is
already omeid lamus. You can't kill a dead man.

: The Ohr Somei'ach there asks why is this case any different than the case 
: of an ox owned by minor orphans - there too the owner is exempt from the 
: death penalty, because kettanim that murder are pattur - yet their ox, if 
: it gored a person to death, is itself then executed.

OTOH, a katan is fully patur from the death penalty.

Apparantly the gezeiras hakasuv only makes killing the shor contingent
on our ability to kill the ba'al, not contingent on whether the ba'al
would have been patur misah for doing it himself.


Micha Berger                 When you come to a place of darkness,
micha@aishdas.org            you do not chase out the darkness with a broom.
http://www.aishdas.org       You light a candle.
(973) 916-0287                  - R' Yekusiel Halberstam of Klausenberg zt"l

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Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 13:42:12 -0400
From: gil.student@citicorp.com
Re: Structure Of TSBP

Micha Berger wrote:
> That said, I would assert without proof that the start of mishnaic 
> learning was with Purim...

Which is gufa the generation of the beginning of AKHG (Mordechai, Ezra, etc.).

Gil Student

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Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 13:49:37 -0400
From: gil.student@citicorp.com
Re: Kel Melech Ne'eman (was: WPG)

Moshe Feldman wrote:
> I have always wondered: if I'm catching up to the tzibbur and get to 
> Shma just after the chazan said HEE, do I have to say KMN?

Gershon Dubin wrote:
> Similarly:   what if you start with the tzibur but don't expect to
> finish shema with them?  

Pardon the lack of citations, but it is befeirush somewhere (probably Aruch 
HaShulchan) that one should pause and listen to HEE and then continue saying 
Shema without repeating anything.  

Gil Student

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Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 13:09:35 -0400
From: "Wolpoe, Richard" <Richard_Wolpoe@ibi.com>
Rishonim - editions

From: "Feldman, Mark" <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
> Dr. Soloveitchik pointed to cases where the Maharsha and others grapple
> with unclear language in Tosfos, and the correct interpretation is obvious
> when one reads the later published Tosfos Ri
> Hazaken of Dampierre (DCS explained that the Tosfos on the daf were synopses
> of the original Tosfos, which were longer; sometimes a synopsis will skip
> some crucial words, sometimes there will be a "hashmata al yidei hadomot"= a
> line was missed in transcribing) or even the Tosfos HaRosh (which IIRC,
> contrary to common belief, is not a commentary of the Rosh but the set of
> Tosfos that he had--he made sure to obtain a very good collection).

I heard (iirc source: professor Agus) that the printers cut corners by using
"cheaper" manuscripts of Tosfos while Talmidei chahcomim - such as the Rosh
- had better, more accurate editions

Think of the Ramban in Mikraos Gdolos vs. a stand alone Mossad haRav Kook
edition.  The newer edition is just better edited, it's not like the Ramban
on Chumash in the Mikraos Gdolos was a Kitzur, it just was probably a
"cheaper" manuscript.

If you will, the biggest problem with Tosfos is not What Tosfos actually
said and/or wrote, but what WE have printed in our Shas today.

FWIW, I once corrected a dikduk error in Torsos in my Gmara.  One chaver
asked me: "who am I to correct Tosfos?"  I don't know what I said then, but
today I would say pashut: " CV I should correct Tosfos - becuase I'm sure
Tosfos knew dikduk. However, this error that I see I attribute  to later
scribes of printers"

Best Regards,
Richard Wolpoe
Richard_Wolpoe@ibi.com (at Information Builders)

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Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 12:36:39 -0400
From: "Wolpoe, Richard" <Richard_Wolpoe@ibi.com>
RE: rishonim

: Rambam is giving psak halacha in the format of a code.  That was
: revolutionary at the time, but the format stuck--witness the Shulchan Aruch.
: Meiri was just summarizing and synthesizing arguments without putting too
: much of his own opinion in--that's characteristic of many halacha books in
: the 20th century, but not much earlier than that.

Again I more or less agree but let's quibble <smile> nevertheless

1) The Rif already wrote a Defacto Kitzur Shas.

2) The idea of summarizing can be taken back {at least} to short-hand
Mishnayos that seem to encapsulate longer Tannaitic material that can be
found in such works as the Tosefta, etc.

3) The Rambam is essentially NOT giving psak Halachah.  He is completely
reformulating TSBP into a brand new structure which will enable people to
learn TSBP without any other sefer.  That is how come Chabad learns Rambam
cyclically even though it is not a sefer psak anymore except for maybe
Teimanim.  It was also a recommend "digest" of TSBP by RSY Weinberg as I
heard it from several Talmidim that to get beki'os take off two years and
learn Rambam.  Compare that to Daf Yomi which takes 7.5 years.

It is my personal opinion that the Rambam only meant to displace TB with his
sefer for Baalei Batim and that Talmidei Chachomim only would learn TB.
This is similar to what R. Yosef Karo did, he wrote the SA for ba'alei Batim
and the Bes Yosef for lamdonim.

4) And the SA did not innovate any structure afaik it was the Tur.  (I've
heard divrei Torah ion public on "How come the R. Yoseif Karo picked this
order?"  It's incredible to me to even ask that, he used the Tur's order
afaik 100%) Similarly the SA was written DAVKA as a limud that could be
chazered regularly "annualy?".  AIUI it was originally against the wishe of
the SA to have nosei keilim because it defeated his purposed of having this
as a cyclical limud (similar to Ben Ish Chai!)  AIUI, the Levush put
pressure on some Geodlim to stand up for the SA and so nosei keilim evolved.

5) Now did not the Sefer Beis Yosef summarize, Gmara, Rashi and Rishonim in
one place?  In fact there were davka objections that he was oversimlified.
The closest emulation in structure afaik is the Aruch haShulchan...

6) FWIW, the KSA resisted ANY footnotes or source quotations as defeating
his purpose.

Kol Tuv
Rich Wolpoe 

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Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 15:51:37 -0400
From: gil.student@citicorp.com
Re: Voss Iz Der Chilluk #8: MC vol. 2 p. 136

I was thinking the exact opposite of RM Berger.  A tereifah is totally mufka 
from the parsha however a katan will eventually be in the parsha.  Therefore, 
the katan is considered to be bar misah while a tereifah is not.

Similarly, a katan is considered bar keshirah for making tefillin because he 
will eventually be chayav in tefillin and is considered bar zevichah because he 
will eventually be obligated to keep kosher.  Here too, he is considered bar 
misah because he will eventually be chayav misah for such an action.  See the 
first Nishmas Adam in Yoreh Deah.

Gil Student

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Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2001 22:17:39 +0300
From: "S. Goldstein" <goldstin@netvision.net.il>
VIDC--Brisker I hope

A treifah is already considered dead.  Therefore, killing him can't happen.
So since he cannot be killed, his ox may not be killed.

A katan is not punishable.  He could however be killed.  This would be a
violation of lo tirztach.  Therefore, even though he is not punished for his
behavior, the verse linkage of owner to ox should not be a reason to exempt
the katan.

Gam baalav yumas is said on the katan.  He, like all others, is not
physically punished.

Shlomo Goldstein

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Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2001 23:17:06 -0400
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Voss Iz Der Chilluk #8: MC vol. 2 p. 136

On Fri, Apr 20, 2001 at 03:29:59PM -0400, Micha Berger wrote:
: One can say that a rotzei'ach who is a tereifah is mei'ikkar hadin
: chayav misah. What prevents beis din from killing him is that he is
: already omeid lamus. You can't kill a dead man.

I was corrected in private email (I have no idea why this isn't posted,
so I'm forwarding without aiding the ge'ulah's arrival):
: A rotzeich who is a treifa is patur because it is not eidus rauy l'hazima,
: see [Bava Kama] 84a (note the case of katan also mentioned there) and
: see the kashe of R' Akiva Eiger in the gilyon, Bais Yosef Shaul vol 3.
: for a nice correspondance between R' Belkin and R' Paretsky on this R'
: Akiva Eiger.

In either case, on can salvage my idea that emi'ikar hadin the tereifah
ought to get killed, and the issue isn't a lack of chiyuv to kill him.
(Dechuyah, not huterah.)


Micha Berger                 When you come to a place of darkness,
micha@aishdas.org            you do not chase out the darkness with a broom.
http://www.aishdas.org       You light a candle.
(973) 916-0287                  - R' Yekusiel Halberstam of Klausenberg zt"l

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Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 16:58:54 EDT
From: Joelirich@aol.com
Re: Avodah V7 #20

In a message dated 04/20/2001 8:41:49am EST, Eliyahu acgerstl@hotmail.com
> My Chavrusa has told me that the MB DOES however make use of the Meiri for 
> the purpose of Pesak.(I do not have the available citation but someone with 
> the Bar-Ilan disc should be able to assist and find it.)
mentioned 32 times - let me know if you want the cites


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Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2001 22:14 +0200
RE: rishonim

MISHNA: The MEHARTZACH (R. Zvi Hirsch Chajes) brings a few cases of early
mishnayot: "Harbeh mishnayot hayu sdurim bizman habayit" [Yoma 53];
"harbeh mishnayot ba'u eleinu mizman kadmon me'od" [Erchin 13]; also
mentions "adayin mizman knesset hagedola nisdera" [Yevamot 9].

RAMBAM:I have a sefer at home called Kuntrus Klalei haRambam by R. Yaakov
Chaim Sofer. He quotes many sources that state that the Rambam didn't
write anything in the Yad without a source from Chazal (quotes: Yad Sofer
Chelek Bet 31; Brit Yaakov 152; Knesset Chaim 87; Zera Chaim 10; Yechi
Yosef 180; Ner Yehuda 266; Zechut Yitzchak Chelek Aluf 21]. In fact, the
Rambam "ein darko l'shanot milshon hamishna v'hatalmud af lo oht achat"
[Brit Yaakov 117].

Shavua Tov

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Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2001 22:50:22 +0200
From: "Carl and Adina Sherer" <sherer@actcom.co.il>
RE: rishonim

On 20 Apr 01, at 8:59, Wolpoe, Richard wrote:
> But aisi the Me'iri was hardly the first "summarizer"; after all didn't the
> Rambam do pretty much the same thing?

True. But would you agree that the Rambam is much more important to
halacha l'maaseh than he is to understanding the Gemara? Whereas the
Meiri's other contemporaries (give or take a hundred years in either
direction) are Rishonim we use primarily to understand the Gemara and
only secondarily to derive halacha l'maaseh.

> To me it is not simply a black-and-white matter of authenticity.  We can
> KNOW the Me'iri is authentic and still consider it Halachically obscure
> (think of the Levush nowadays!) 

The Levush was reprinted here recently (complete with mekoros). 7 
volume set, very well done. If anyone is interested, you can write 
me off the list. 

-- Carl

Please daven and learn for a Refuah Shleima for our son,
Baruch Yosef ben Adina Batya among the sick of Israel.  
Thank you very much.


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Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2001 21:56:34 +0300
From: "S. Goldstein" <goldstin@netvision.net.il>
elec on YT

RMF>use of electricity on [yom tov]

> I vaguely recall hearing that the Aruch Hashulchan permitted it too.
> Anybody know the source?

RSZA in his work Meorei Aish quotes the AhS from a halachic journal
published in USA.  Presumably it does not appear elsewhere.  Achiezer, also
quoted in Meorei Aish, is quoted as saying, regarding this psak, it is not

Shlomo Goldstein

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Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2001 21:31:44 EDT
From: Zeliglaw@aol.com
Re: Cooking and Shabbos

> R. Eli Shulman told me that he was once in RHS's office when someone
> called and asked if RYBS said this. RHS replied that if RYBS said it
> then he was wrong. RHS also said as much in his Flatbush shiurim on
> hilchos bishul (tapes are available for sale as a package in Eichler's),
> i.e. that the Ran does not mean what RYBS said it does.

RHS said this in the Forest Hills shiur on Shabbos also.

                    Steve Brizel

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Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 16:00:42 -0500 (CDT)
From: "Shoshanah M. & Yosef G. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Aishdas Yom Iyun Apr. 29th and a Personal Note

On Apr. 29th, 6 Iyar, the Aishdas Society will b'ezras Hashem host a Yom
Iyun inviting the community, men and women, to join us as we explore the
topic of "Avodas Hashem". We will IY"H have three speakers, Rabbi Seth
Mandel of Queens, myself, and a third individual, we hope, a distinguished
Mara d'Asra in the greater NY area.

Rabbi Mandel will speak on "Avodas Hashem and Leshon ha'Kodesh", I will
speak on "Avodas Hashem as a Klal" and the third speaker will speak on a
similar subject.

Reb Micha Berger, coordinator of the Aishdas Scoiety, will give a
presentation as to the society's aspirations.

The Yom Iyun will most probably take place at a Shul in Kew Garden Hills,
precise location to be determined over Shabbos - we will know by Sunday.
The program will begin at 12 noon, run for approximately two hours,
concluded by Mincha.

Please let as many people as you can know about this wonderful event. More
details are available from Reb Micha at 212.357.4355.

Furthermore, I will be speaking on "Growing in Bein Adom l'Chaveiro" that
evening, at 8:15 pm, for Hakhel at the Agudah of Flatbush. Please let me
know if you would like more information. I can be reached at 773.267.6963.
I would really love to meet up with any and everybody at one of these

Have a Good Shabbos or Gut Voch, depending when you get to this note!

Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer
ygb@aishdas.org, http://www.aishdas.org/rygb

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Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2001 23:18:31 +0300
From: "S. Goldstein" <goldstin@netvision.net.il>
Shiras HaYam in Mikdash

It was posted that the Gem. RH 31a records Shiras HaYam in mikdash.  I
didn't find it.  Help please.

Shlomo Goldstein

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Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2001 22:46:27 +0300
From: "S. Goldstein" <goldstin@netvision.net.il>
fake but appealing Torah

> You cannot imbue real and basic Judaism by utilizing cheap
> sentimentalism and stressing empty ceremonies.

The Yam shel Shlomo in Bava Kama says even at the point of death one may not
falsify Torah.  This is true even to goyim, kol she kayn Jews.

Shlomo Goldstein

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Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2001 14:56:03 -0500
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Please publicize the Yom Iyun!

I remember from previous discussions that some of you have Media 
connections - if you can get the Yated, Ha'Modi'a, Jewish Press, Jewish 
Week, local papers, to run a notice - or even the ad - of next week's 
event, we would be most appreciative!

And, the ad now has gone out in the text of an e-mail, as an attachment, 
and is posted on Aishdas website - if you can print it out and post it 
wherever you think appropriate, that would be very helpful.


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Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2001 21:24:23 +0100
From: Chana/Heather Luntz <Chana/Heather@luntz.demon.co.uk>
Re: Kula shopping

Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org> writes
>What is occuring is a reluctance to pasken. Since the rules of pesak
>aren't being applied, one is left with a safeik as to what to do -- and
>therefore one ends up applying the rules of birur sefeikos instead...

>A second motivation of chumrah that I find to be a less-than-wholesome
>statement ...                                              frum Jews who
>aren't having their religious needs met. And since observance is the key
>to religiosity in yahadus, they seek more and more things to observe, so
>as to feel religious...
>to their search for redemption. When the novelty of the new hanhagah
>wears off, one has to seek a new one.

>The third problematic source of "chumros" (in this case, quotes are
>warranted) is simply yuharah. Keeping up with the Cohens.

I believe there is a fourth source of chumros - having more
time available. Chumros, in general, and especially the kind we are
discussing, take more time than kulos. If one is both working a full
working day in order to earn a parnasa and struggling to find time to
learn, taking on chumras becomes out of the question. But today, more
of our male population is not working than at any time in our history.
That provides a large pool of people with the time to think about and
take on chumros. Women are marrying later and hence again have more
time to take on chumros. And even once married, modern technology has,
to a certain extent, provided labor saving devices (such as the washing
machine, the freezer, the dishwasher and the microwave) which do operate
to free up a certain amount of time (I think this last group, however, has
been given the least "extra" time, because so often the extra time freed
up by these labor saving devices is consumed by having more surviving
children to care for or alternatively by having to bring in some of the
income needed to support the family).

Based solely on the information of who has more time available than
they ever had in the past, one might expect two groups to be those
primarily looking for and taking on new chumros, male non workers and
female unmarrieds. Where one might expect the taking on of chumros to
conflict most is where the taking on of chumros most impacts on those who
do not have the same extra time freedoms - wives of men taking on chumros,
(eg as articulated by RET regarding not eating out on pesach) - men who
can, by virtue of their work commitments, not keep up with the Cohens
in full time kollel (some of not eating out on pesach no doubt assumes
than men will be off yeshiva for a certain period before pesach to help
their wives, not trying to close that deal all of the night before), -
women who by virtue of their marital and childcare obligations cannot
keep up with their single friends (eg have the time to go to WIGs -
WIGs of course, if you leave aside all the rhetoric around it, would
seem to be a classic chumra scenario) - women who by virtue of juggling
work and home commitments cannot keep up with their friends who merely
have home commitments, etc

And of course, the type of chumra that is being adopted will reflect
the where the additional time availability manifests itself. One would
not expect chumros in choshen mishpat if the vast majority of those with
more time on their hands do not spend significant portions of their time
in any form of business environment. It will manifest itself in the home
if more people with time availability are spending more time in the home
than they would have in previous generations (or for that matter out of
the home, if the converse occurs).



Chana/Heather Luntz

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Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2001 17:38:13 EDT
From: Joelirich@aol.com
Re: Kula shopping

In a message dated 04/22/2001 5:13:51pm EDT,
Chana/Heather@luntz.demon.co.uk writes:
> I believe there is a fourth source of chumros - having more
> time available.

As usual, very insightful. Perhaps we can expand your point to a more
general source of chumras - having more resources available. For those
with more material resources might we see something like buying only
range bred chickens because of tzar baalei chayim?


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Date: Mon, 23 Apr 2001 11:06:47 -0400
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Kula shopping

On Sun, Apr 22, 2001 at 09:24:23PM +0100, Chana/Heather Luntz wrote:
: I believe there is a fourth source of chumros - having more
: time available. Chumros, in general, and especially the kind we are
: discussing, take more time than kulos...

Let's generalize this and say resources in general. Chumros that involve
the gavrah require more time, but those that involve a cheftzah merely
cost more money. Going to the kosher grocer and picking up only shemurah
matzah doesn't take more time. It costs more, and requires a better shemurah
matzah distribution system making them more available.


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Date: Mon, 23 Apr 2001 10:56:18 -0400
From: "Wolpoe, Richard" <Richard_Wolpoe@ibi.com>

From: Wolpoe, Richard [mailto:Richard_Wolpoe@ibi.com]
> But aisi the Me'iri was hardly the first "summarizer"; after all didn't the
> Rambam do pretty much the same thing?

From: "Feldman, Mark" <MFeldman@CM-P.COM>
> Rambam is giving psak halacha in the format of a code. 

> That was revolutionary at the time, but the format stuck--witness the
> Shulchan Aruch.

It's been a while since I've seen the Rambam's hakdamah... 
and I want to say that I have been guilty of some gross oversimplifications
on this list myself <smile>... Nevertheless, the Rambam's yad was not just a
summary of psak.  It is more properly a textbook a primer of TSBP.  See

How do I know this?  The Rambam's own Teshuvos often go on tangents not at
all implied in his code.  Plus the Rambam - unlike the Tur - does not stick
to Halachah lema'ase.

The Rambam was essentially summarizing TSBP - similar to what Rebbe did in
the Mishna.  Of course yeshivos have used the Rambam's choices to create
magnificent lamdus structures based on sepculating as how to retrofit the
Rambam back to Shas.

AISI, the Rambam was originally designed to be used in much the same way
Chabad uses it, as a periodic limud.  How do I know this?  Because that is
how R. Y Karo designed the SA and how the Ben Ish Hai is designed.  Of
course, the latter 2 seforim are indeed psak Halachah and this reflects back
to the Rambam's Yad, too. Nevertheless, I do not see the Yad, nor most
codes, in the same light as most people do.  Paskening Halachah requires
more than a code, it requires touching on many inter-connected sugyos.  In
that sense, the proper way to pasken is to either look-up existing Teshuvos
or perhaps like R. M. Feinstein, to start the process of analysis from
"scratch".  Consulting Codes is quite popular, but aisi a bit

In summary here is  how I would describe the primary functions of the
following texts:
Mishna:  Rebbe's definitive collection of TSBP case law standardized for
universal educational purposes.
Mishneh Torah: Rambam's definitive Summary of TSBP.  IOW you can learn
Tanach and Mishneh Torah and you have adequately covered both TSB Chsav ans
TSB Peh.
Tur: Summary of Halachah lema'ase with various authoritative opinions.
SA:  Summary of Beis Yosesph's opinions designed to be completed
KSA: Summary of Halachah as per R. Shlomoh Ganzfried with indications of
when to consult Halachic authorities embedded in the text. {AISI, the
admonition to consult Poskim was implicit in all of the above texts since
their prime function was pedagogical anyway.}

As a Summary, the Me'iri was more focused upon the text than upon
conclusions, but the process is similar to others and therefore not entirely

Kol Tuv,
Richard Wolpoe

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Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2001 21:14:10 -0400
From: "Gil Student" <gil_student@hotmail.com>
Re: rishonim

I just stumbled on this which is relevant to the recovery of rishonim from 
kisvei yad.  The Shach says the following at the end of Yoreh Deah 242 in 
his "kitzur behanhagas horaos issur veheter" par. 8:

Whenever the words of the earlier authorities are written and are famous, 
and the later deciders disagree with them, we follow the later ones.  
However, if we sometimes find a responsum from a great authority that was 
never remembered in a book and others disagree with him, we do not have to 
follow the later authorities because it is possible that they did not know 
the words of this great authority and if they had known they would have 
retracted their opinions...

Gil Student

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