Avodah Mailing List

Volume 15 : Number 068

Wednesday, August 10 2005

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 09:18:51 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Micha Berger" <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: TIDE Redux

Yosef Gavriel & Shoshanah M. Bechhofer wrote:
> Rabbi Mayer Schiller has written a very important essay on TIDE. For the
> most part, we are in agreement, except for two points. The essay can be
> found in PDF at: <http://www.aishdas.org/avodah/faxes/TIDE.pdf>

I "took home" two points:

1- I was particularly taken by the following (taken from pg 20-21):
    Lehavdil, there are Mennonites today who have left their own ghetto
    without weakening their faith. They serve mankind as peacemakers
    and bringers of kindness throughout the world. They may be found in
    the hills of the Balkans and the streets of Belfast and, yes, in the
    improverished hovels of Gaza City and Hebron trying to bring peace
    and love to all while ministering to the gashmiyus needs of those
    suffering. Is that not a noble image for an am Hashem? Imagine, just
    for a moment, if we could be performing those tasks for all, while
    articulating and defending traditional morality in the public square.

That, to Rav Hirsch, was how we were to respond to the fall of the ghetto
walls. Derekh Eretz not only in what we take from the world at large,
but what we give back to it.

2- I never before considered the implications of emracing both Austritt
and RSRH's humanism. There's a border here that needs more exploring.

This is also a potential difference between TIDE and TuM. TuM's more
academicly oriented "mada" leads one to ivory towers, not grass roots


Micha Berger             Zion will be redeemed through justice,
micha@aishdas.org        and her returnees will come in righteousness.
Fax: (270) 514-1507

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Date: Mon, 8 Aug 2005 22:47:40 -0400
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Har Habayit

On Sat, Aug 06, 2005 at 11:01:35PM +0200, Yisrael Medad wrote:
: and to jump forward, Rav Yehiel Michel Tuchachinsky wrote, in his
: monumental Ir HaKodesh v'haMikdash, Sec. 5, p. 80: that in this pre-Ben
: Davidic period, we will be able to build synagogues on the Har Habayit,
: once we have the permission of the authorities [and he was writing during
: the pre-state period] as the area is quite large - 250 cubits to the
: south are free all along the east-west axis of 500 cubits.

In contrast to RYBS, who recommended that if you really want to put a
kvitl into the kotel (not that he saw the point), to do it using a pen.
That kedushas Har haBayis extended ad ve'ad bikhlal to the walls.

Even within 1,500 feet of the southern corner.

My original post was about how -- until sometime in the 1990s -- more
people were oseir. RSGoren's opinion was considered that of an avante
gard da'as yachid. I was commenting on a sociological shift, not that
the halakhah was violated with a new pesaq created from a vaccum.


Micha Berger             Zion will be redeemed through justice,
micha@aishdas.org        and her returnees will come in righteousness.
Fax: (270) 514-1507      

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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 09:48:16 -0400
From: "Markowitz, Chaim" <cmarkowitz@scor.com>
Killing Spiders

> As a result, we  try not to kill spiders - a lesson in hakoras hatov.

I don't know if this is what you meant by not killing spiders, but Rav
Moshe has a teshuva in which he says one should get rid of insects and
bees in a manner which is not achzariyus. In other words even though
there is no tzar ba'alei chaim to kill the insects, it is preferable to
remove them without killing them.

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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 10:35:11 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Micha Berger" <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: [Areivim] Lo TeXhoneim -- decision by Rabbanut Rashit

R Harry Maryles wrote on the thread "Lo TeXhoneim -- decision by Rabbanut
> There are many places in Shas where Tanaaim argue about whether a Non-Jew
> can make a Kinyan in Israel in order to remove one's obligations of
> Maaser. Both the Yerushalmi and the Bavli discuss it.

Just to be clear on something I think RHM takes as a given, there are
two issues. (1) If one may, IOW issur veheter. (2) If one *can*, is
there a challos to the qinyan?

Then there's the question of whether we can split the qinyan into two:
baalus and sovereignty -- which ties into something I just wrote (I don't
know in which order I'll approve the two discusions) on the thread about
hefqeir. Not all purchases are about change in baalus.


Micha Berger             Zion will be redeemed through justice,
micha@aishdas.org        and her returnees will come in righteousness.
Fax: (270) 514-1507

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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 08:56:18 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Micha Berger" <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: chaverim

Rich, Joel wrote:
> On a well known blog there was discussion of a post mashiach world
> including chaverim and amei haaretz. Does anyone know how this actually
> worked in the past? ...

I don't know about the past. I was jarred by the idea it would exist
in the future. With everyone sitting under their fig trees or by their
grape vines learning Torah, who would be an am ha'aretz?


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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 09:29:05 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Micha Berger" <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: hefker

R Zvi Lampel wrote:
>> I've heard 2 understandings of hefker... The seemingly more common
>> approach is that... it is now truly ownerless...The other approach is
>> my being mafkir it just makes it available for you to take ownership
>> but until you do, it's still mine.... Has anyone heard this 2nd approach.

> I haven't (FWIW). But off the cuff, according to the second approach, how
> would be making my chometz hefker help me on Pesach, if it's still mine?

Bal yira'eh bal yimatzei is altogether a strange subject. One doesn't
really have baalus on chameitz on Pesach, since there is nothing
he can do with it. The impact of this point on dinei yerushah
was the subject of a VIDC challenge (#7, the question is posed at
<http://www.aishdas.org/avodah/vol07/v07n015.shtml#12> and the discussion
summarized at <http://www.aishdas.org/avodah/vol07/v07n020.shtml#15>). If
the issue isn't baalus, your question doesn't apply.


Micha Berger             Zion will be redeemed through justice,
micha@aishdas.org        and her returnees will come in righteousness.
Fax: (270) 514-1507

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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 14:34:22 -0400
From: "David Riceman" <driceman@worldnet.att.net>
Re: Torah shebaal peh

From: "Rich, Joel" <JRich@Segalco.com>
> on a tape shiur I once heard it was quoted in the name of R' Sternbuch
> that when moshiach comes we will revert to oral transmission of tsbp.
> The current written texts will be of historical interest. I'm not sure
> what that meant or if it was an accurate report. Any ideas/sources?

See the introduction to the Dor Revii (which RDG kindly sent me in
translation since I don't have access to a copy of the original).
Any Sanhedrin can overrule drashos from psukim of previous Sanhedrins.
The DR [don't be confused by acronyms - I'm not referring to myself
with the definite article!] argues that the codification of the Mishna
froze that process. Presumably once the Sanhedrin is restored that
process will continue, and a substantial part of Shas will be only of
historical interest.

David Riceman 

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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 11:46:53 -0400
From: "Rich, Joel" <JRich@Segalco.com>
RE: Torah shebaal peh

Rich, Joel wrote:
> on a tape shiur I once heard it was quoted in the name of R' Sternbuch 
> that when moshiach comes we will revert to oral transmission of tsbp.
> The current written texts will be of historical interest. I'm not sure 
> what that meant or if it was an accurate report. Any ideas/sources?

> This fluidity would force one back to the pretextual model. Although with
> the internet, maybe not! The internet gives real fluidity and impermanent
> fora for the written word.

Sorry-I was specifically asking about "The current written texts will
be of historical interest"  vs. perhaps gnizah?

Joel Rich

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Date: Tue, 09 Aug 2005 20:49:03 -0400
From: "JosephMosseri" <joseph.mosseri@verizon.net>
Tishah Beab on Saturday night

A Brief Synopsis of the Laws and Customs of Tish'ah BeAb that begins on
Saturday Night

The final meal before the fast is called Se'oudah HaMafseqet. Generally we
are only allowed to eat one cooked food at this meal, usually rice and
lentils or a hard boiled egg and a piece of bread. Since this year this meal
will be on Shabbat itself, we are not to display any of these mourning signs
at all. One is to eat a complete meal at the dining room table and we are
even permitted to eat meat and drink wine and even make the meal large and
festive similar to the feast that King Solomon would have when he reigned.

As we know, we are not permitted to wear leather shoes on Tish'ah BeAb. What
are we to do since Shabbat ends and Tish'ah BeAb begins?
Generally we would change footwear at sunset but because of Shabbat we wait
and do not remove our leather shoes until after Set HaKokhabim (the stars
come out). At that point we remove our leather shoes and put on non-leather
shoes and we change into non-Shabbat clothing. At that point Shabbat is
definitely over and you can even drive to kenis to pray arbit and read
and qinot.

We do not make regular habdalah on Saturday night. We just say Atah
Honantanou in the Amidah. Then after the Amidah we just light the candle and
say the Berakhah of Bore Meore HaEsh. We do not say Hagefen, we do not say
Besamim, we do not say Hamabdil.
On Sunday night when the fast is over then we take a cup of wine and say
Bore Feri HaGefen and Hamabdil, but no Besamim.

Those people who are permitted to eat on Tish'ah BeAb (such as a woman who
has given birth within 30 days of the fast) must make habdalah on a cup of
wine before eating.

The following time table is accurate for Brooklyn,NY and for Deal,NJ:

Saturday Night Sunset is at 7:56PM therefore most synagogues will be having
Minhah at about 2 hours before sunset.

Since Sunset is at 7:56 and most people will want time to change and drive
to Kenis after Shabbat, most places will begin Arbit at around 8:45PM. Arbit
generally lasts a maximum of 1 & 1/2 hours.

Sunday morning Shahrit...check local times.

Sunday Minhah 7:10PM, usually 45 minutes before sunset because of Sefer
Torah, Haftarah, and Pesouqe Nehamah.

Fast ends at about 20 minutes after sunset but to play it safe let's say

TiZKou LiR-oT BeNeHaMaT SioN BeQaRoB!!!

Joseph Mosseri
I am not a Rabbi or a Poseq.
I am just interested in discussing Halakhot & Minhagim, laws and customs.
I invite your insights, comments, criticisms, etc..
Please let me know if you would like me to forward the same to my list.
If you would like to be removed from this list or know of someone who would
benefit from it just let me know by including, first name, last name, &
Joseph Mosseri

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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 09:03:57 -0700 (PDT)
From: Harry Maryles <hmaryles@yahoo.com>
Re: praying to intermediaries

SBA <sba@sba2.com> wrote:
> See KSA 128:13 re being mispallel at kivrei tzaddikim on Erev RH.

> "...umarbim tachanunim le'orer es hatzadikim hakedoshim...
> sheyamlitzu tov baadenu beyom hadim.
> vegam machmas shehu mokom kevuras hatzadikim...hu kadosh vetohor,
> vehatefila mekubeles shom beyoser bihyoso al admas kodesh. 
> veyaaseh HKBH chesed bizechus  hatzadikim.

Please! This isn't davening to Maisim. This is praying in the vicinity
of Kever Tzadikim in order to utilize their Zechusim to work in our favor.

The problem with these kinds of practices is that people tend to get
confused and end up davening to the Meis itself! This approaches AZ IMHO
and mimics very closely what Catholics do when they pray to saints,
or even Jesus. It is... oh so easy for the unsophisticated Jew with
limited Chinuch or worse to think they are davening to a dead Rebbe
to help them! How many Chasidim go to the Kever of a Rebbe and think
they are Davening to that Rebbe? I realize that probably most realize
that they are asking the Neshamas HaMeis to be a Mailitz Yosher, but
even that concept is misunderstood, IMHO, and there are probably some
...perhaps many... Chasidim who pray directly to the dead "Rebbe".

I can't believe this practice wasn't Assur'd years ago, in spite of what
the KSA said. The slippery slope is way too slippery.


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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 17:46:36 +0300
From: "D&E-H Bannett" <dbnet@zahav.net.il>
Re: harry potter and kishuf

R Micha: The Gra assurs directing one's requests at the meis.

R' SBA: And who doesn't???

At funerals they don't always request the meis to be a melitz yosher.

But, at every funeral I have attended in Israel in the last 56 years,
the chevra kadisha representative speaks to the meis and informs him
or her that all their actions in the preparations and burial were in
accordance with established custom.

So far, I have never heard the meis reply.


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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 18:18:22 +0200
From: "Simone and Earl Maser" <semaser@commvia.com>
Fw: Re: haschalas gemara -- hefker

Rich, Joel" < JRich@Segalco.com wrote:
> I've heard 2 understandings of hefker... The seemingly more common
> approach is that... it is now truly ownerless...The other approach is
> my being mafkir it just makes it available for you to take ownership
> but until you do, it's still mine.... Has anyone heard this 2nd approach.
> If so, any philosophical basis/mkorot for the different approaches?

Avraham Weidberg added:
> Perhaps you mean the shitta of R' Yosi who, according to one
> explanation,holds that hefker is like matana. See TB Nedarim 43a.

 -- for mekorot see artscroll eilu metzios page 21a3 (note 2,student's
edition) and insights to the daf (dafyomi) on the abovementioned Nedarim
43a. "Philosophically" a core problem might be the extent to which the
declaration of hefker can be considered a "neder".

Regarding R. Lampel's remark on making chamets hefker just before Pesach,
the declaration (neder?) ends with the words "it shall be rendered null
and be hefker as dust of the earth" i.e. first nullified and then not
just hefker -- but of no value whatsoever to anyone.

kol tuv
yitschak Maser
Montpellier, France

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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 19:07:32 -0400
From: "Zvi Lampel" <hlampel@thejnet.com>
Re: Is the World Good?

In response to R. Meir Shinnar's simply brilliant response as to
>: Where is there is source at all in Torah that considers this world
>: good? (8 Aug 2005)

> What about vayar elokim et kol asher asa vehine tov meod....

R. Micha Berger responded:
> [The sound you hear in the background is your moderator thunking his
> head in frustration for missing what should have been obvious.

No need to thunk, since the whole chapter is possibly allegorical anyway,
and may merely be a "necessary but not really true" belief. (Although
since this posuk would chronolgically belong after the creation of the
eitz hadaas, one cannot claim that it isn't talking about "good and evil"

(The above was sarcasm.)

More seriously, I was perplexed by the oriiginal question, since it was
a response to a post--
> ("One possibility is that we consider the good of the world to outweigh
> the bad because our survey of the world has demonstrated this to be
> the case. According to the Rambam, the preponderance of the good is
> questioned only by the ignorant populace... ")

 --that was referring to the Rambam in Moreh Nevuchim which is citing
this very posuk for the point he is making.

My impression is that "good" means it is good in its beautiful
maifestation of Hashem's complex wisdom, and its ultimate justice and
kindness. Once this is recognized, then one sees that wherever in Tanach
Hashem or the world is praised (particularly as in Tehillim) the fact of
the world's goodness is implied. As far as the fact that evil does exist
in this world--to whatever ration to good, and however Hashem can let
even that be, as explained by Rambam and Ramchal--Ramchal (for instance
in Derech Tevunos) explains that in the long run it is all good.

[Email #2. -mi]

Sun, 31 Jul 2005 "brent" <fallingstar613@hotmail.com> posted:
> Where is there is source at all in Torah that considers this world good?
> It is called, "Emek HaBachah" (Valley of Tears), "Olam HaChoshech"
> (World of Darkness) and other such terms.

As far as "Olam HaChoshech" is concerned, Rav Avigdor Miller ztvk"l
often emphasized that "darkness" does not refer to gloom, but to the
ignorance of many to the Light of Truth by those who view the world in
a superficial way. Mesillas Yesharim treats it this way. (I'll have to
examine what "Emek HaBachah" is all about.)

	Zvi Lampel

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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 16:27:59 GMT
From: "Elazar M. Teitz" <remt@juno.com>
Re: lo sassur

R' Brent Kaufman wrote <<< ... "yorucha" is only in regards to the
"shaila" that arises for which you will go to that place and seek their
hora'ah. It doesn't imply that they can create decrees unrelated to the
question that brought you there.>>

<I was taught that too. When I asked the source for new decrees, I was
told that it is from Vayikra 18:30, "ushmartem es mishmarti".>

RBK's comment was that simple pshat in the pasuk refers to the answer to
a specific question. However, as far as TSBP is concerned, we _do_ learn
the authority for takanos from lo sassur, as the g'mara says in Shabbos
23a as justification for saying "v'tzivanu" for ner Chanuka. (There is,
however, a second opinion in that g'mara that derives it from "z'keinecha,
v'yomru lach.")


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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 16:42:46 EDT
From: Mlevinmd@aol.com
Lo Sassur

> The objection that you quote is a standard Karaite objection. It has
> been dealt with by R. David Nieto in Matteh Dan, Part 1. Basically
> he uses this verse to show that they ahve to conceded that Rabbinic
> interpretations have status of Torah at least in some cases. Once this
> is conceded, other arguments carry the day.

Wait, that's not an arguement. The verse says that they have the
authority to judicize a controversy that is raised and that judicial
ruling is authoritative. That's all. That's as far as their status extends
(acc. to the pshat of the pasuk).

You can't say that since the pasuk gives them a little authority, we can
just take that little bit of authority and extend it to other areas as
they see fit. I just dont' see the logic of that.

The point is that we have a meaning that is in dispute. Since it must be
conceded that the verse establishes in principle that some body has the
authority to establish Torah Law, the interpretation that claims that
it is Chazal is much more probable that if it is not established. Then
the opponent must defend why he restricts the principle and on what basis.

M. Levin

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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 15:33:50 -0500 (CDT)
From: afolger@aishdas.org
Re: shu't besamim rosh

Reb Yitzchok Zlochower wrote: <<In this connection, since the authorship
of the Zohar is also in question, it would be of interest to learn
whether R' Moshe de Leon actually claimed that he found an ancient
manuscript that stemmed from Tanaitic times. If so, then the argument
of the critics that the errors in history, geography, and language to be
found in the Zohar is, indeed, evidence that it is a forgery and should
detract from its halachic significance.>>

 From the oft quoted manuscript of Rav Yits'haq demin Akko we learn that
Rav Mosheh de Leon did claim to have (an) ancient manuscript(s). However,
nobody seriously disputes that the Zohar does contain a large amount of
older material, although it is unclear how old that material is. However,
from philological and content analysis, it is also evident that RMiShTdL
has done a lot of editing, embelishing and added much material of his own.

Now, even though there is much new material in the Zohar, experts have
noted that there are fewer 'hiddushim, and therefore, we can easily
maintain that even as we might be convinced of RMdL's authorship of
the Zohar, the Zohar still remains an important, monumental work and
those inclined kabbalistically should contend with the work despite
the controversy.

Essentially, this is what Rav Ya'aqov Emden wrote when explaining that
it pains him to publish about the authorship of the Zohar, as people
will think he disparages the Zohar. It is an important work, just not
composed by RaShBY.

There is considerable academic dispute as to the date of the oldest
material in the Zohar, the Merkavah sections. It may indeed come from the
time of the Tannaim, although that does not mean that the stories of the
'Havraye is from that period. After all, one set of reasons to dispute
the antiquity of the Zohar are the difficulties with those stories.

Rav Ya'aqov Emden's statement on the matter really was level headed. The
Zohar is no Besamim Rosh.

Kol tuv,
Arie Folger

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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 16:51:22 -0400
From: "Rich, Joel" <JRich@Segalco.com>
Darchei shalom / eivah

Both these concepts are employed by the gemara for both Jews and
Non-Jews. Is anyone aware of any discussion of the source of these
halachik concepts? (it seems the gemara as far as I can tell takes them
as a given.) Is there any difference in their force?

Joel Rich

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Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 22:41:19 -0400
From: "Zvi Lampel" <hlampel@thejnet.com>
Re: lo sassur (Avodah V15 #67)

Mon, 8 Aug 2005 R. Akiva Miller <kennethgmiller@juno.com> posted:
> When I asked the source for new decrees, I was
> told that it is from Vayikra 18:30, "ushmartem es mishmarti". Torah
> Temimah 82 there would seem to support this, but only for protective
> siyagim. Authority for brand-new takanos comes from elsewhere, I suppose.

Finding, or defending the scriptural source given by the rishonim, for
the fact is valuable, but it's worthwhile to note that Moshe Rabbeynu
himself issued both gezayros and takkonos (Shabbos 30a), as well as did
Yehoshua, Pinchas, Dovid HaMelech, Shlomo HaMelech and the Nevi'im.

Zvi Lampel

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Date: Wed, 10 Aug 2005 00:27:19 -0400
From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@juno.com>
Shiurim on Tisha Be'Av

I heard tonight for the second time, someone being advised to eat pachos
pachos mikeshiur on Tisha Be'Av. I was under the impression that this
was limited to Yom Kippur. Am I wrong? Sources?


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Date: Wed, 10 Aug 2005 14:17:51 +0200
From: Yisrael Medad <yisrael.medad@gmail.com>
Releasing Possession of Portions of Eretz-Yisrael

Former Chief Rabbi Shapira Issues Ruling Against Expulsion 
18:12 Aug 09, '05 / 4 Av 5765
By Ezra HaLevi and Yishai Fleisher

In response to requests from students, and public confusion on the status
of the Disengagement Plan according to Jewish Law, former Chief Rabbi
Avraham Shapira has issued a ruling.

Rabbi Shapira, former Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi of the State of Israel and
the head of the Merkaz HaRav yeshiva, has written a complete Halakhic
responsa (legal ruling) regarding "the expulsion of Jews from Gush Katif,
in order to hand a part of the land to non-Jews."

The Jewish legal ruling reads as follows:

Paragraph after lengthy paragraph on the way of the Torah in these
important matter can be written, but at this time I will give you as
an answer the brief, practical, halakhic verdict - so that the house
of Israel will know the way of the Torah and go in the way of its

A) According to Torah law, it is completely forbidden to give land in
Israel to a non-Jew, due to the prohibition of Lo Techanem ('Do not
give them a foothold in the Land') and due to the nullification of
the commandment to settle the Land of Israel that is incumbent upon
every individual of Israel. This prohibition applies to every Jew,
soldier and civilian alike. An order to take part in the evacuation of
Jews from their homes in order to give over the land to non-Jews is an
order that is against the religion of our holy Torah and forbidden to
fulfill. Every order that is contrary to Jewish law and compels one to
violate the words of the Torah holds no validity, is forbidden to fulfill
and no person has the authority to deliver it. About such instances the
Rambam (Maimonides) wrote, "It goes without saying that if an order of
the king nullifies a commandment, then it is not listened to (Laws of
Kings)." Anyone who violates this prohibition will not be exonerated,
not in this world and not in the world to come.

B) In general the prohibition of handing land over to non-Jews includes
helping those engaged in the transgression. Therefore, one must not
participate in blocking the entrances to Gush Katif or assist, in any
other manner, the expulsion of Jews from their homes. Similarly, it is
upon every soldier called for reserve duty to refrain from showing up
if his service is designated to enable other soldiers to take part in
the transgression.

C) A soldier or police officer that harms the holy items of Israel and,
G-d forbid, destroys heavenly articles and holy accoutrements such as
Torah scrolls, phylacteries, mezuzas - whether it is done within the
context of the evacuation transgression or not - he is desecrating the
holy of Israel and violates the command Lo ta'asun ken l'HaShem Elokeichem
(Do not treat G-dly things as we are commanded to treat idolatry).

D) One who destroys an object in a synagogue, he is like someone who
destroys a stone in the Sanctuary [of the Holy Temple]. (Mordechai,
chapter Bnei Ha'Ir, in the Magen Avraham, 152:6). There is an absolute
prohibition for every soldier and every policeman to take part in the
destruction of a synagogue and a study hall. And within that prohibition
is the prohibition of destroying vessels belonging to the synagogue, for
they are like the synagogue itself (Biur Halachah, siman 152). Woe to him
and woe to the soul of a soldier or policeman who takes part in this sin.

E) A soldier or policeman who damages the property of the residents
of the region is committing robbery. There is no "Law of the Kingdom"
[the concept in Jewish law which gives deference to the actions of a king
even over certain ethical values]. In this case rather, the "violent
theft of a kingdom," is contrary to Torah law. (Shach, Choshen Mishpat
73:39) It is the right of every person to defend his property from harm
or damage that are done through acts that are contrary to Torah law.

F) It is incumbent upon every Jew to do all he can to stop
transgression. Moreover, every single Jew is required to protest. Of
course, it is not allowed to use violent means against soldiers of the
Israel Defense Forces, or the Israeli police.

G) Only great sages of the generation whose decisions are widely accepted
in Israel are allowed to adjudicate difficult questions in all parts of
the Torah, and are allowed to render such decisions that affect all of
Israel. All those who have not reached this level should abstain from
rendering decisions on these issues. If he does render decisions on this
matter, the Rambam has already called him (Laws of Talmud Torah, chapter
5:4), "An evil person, a fool, and haughty," and it is furthermore said
about him, "Many corpses she has made to fall, etc." and it says about
him "and many are its dead." These are the small students which have
not studied Torah sufficiently; and they wish to aggrandize themselves
before the ignoramuses and the people of their city; and they leap and
sit at the head to instruct Israel; and it is they who increase conflict;
and they are the destroyers of the world who put out the light of Torah
and who ruin the vineyard of the G-d of Legions. It is about them that
Solomon has said in his wisdom, "Small foxes have taken hold of us,
small foxes destroying the vineyards."

H) Those who follow the rulings of rabbis who have not reached the
level of rendering decisions in these matters (as was addressed above),
are not categorized as inadvertent transgressors, and they too will be
judged. (See Pitchei Teshuva, Even haEzer 17:140 and Yoreah Deah 99:5,
in the name of the Tzemach Tzedek haKadmon)

I) From the straits, in the 'days between the straits' [the three weeks
of increasing mourning culminating with the 9th of Av], G-d will hear
the voice of His nation, and will answer us bountifully, and out of
suffering and tribulation He will find for us salvation and well-being
and He will take away the shame of His nation from the whole earth,
because G-d has spoken.

Rabbi Avraham Kahane Shapira 

Rabbi Shapira also sent a sharply-worded letter to IDF Chief Rabbi
Brig.-Gen. Yisrael Weiss, regarding the latter's ruling bidding soldiers
to fulfill military orders connected with the expulsion of Jews from
Gush Katif and northern Shomron. Rabbi Shapira wrote, "If, as you claim,
you are my student, I request of you, please listen to my opinion,
and do not rule contrary to what I rule. And if you are not my student,
please do not use my name to fulfill your missions."

Yisrael Medad
Mobile Post Efraim 44830

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Date: Wed, 10 Aug 2005 12:53:07 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Micha Berger" <micha@aishdas.org>
A 9 beAv thought from Yashar's Open Access Project

Yashar Books' Open Access Project's (see <http://www.yasharbooks.com> or
contact RGS for details) most entry (by R' YH Henkin) that I think would
interest the chevrah and merit further discussion.

"Why Was the Second Temple Destroyed?"
RGS's summary:
> What types of communal ills led to the destruction of the holy Temples in
> Jerusalem? Rabbi Yehuda Herzl Henkin explores this topic and offers his own
> unique approach to the subject.


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