Avodah Mailing List

Volume 16 : Number 010

Thursday, October 27 2005

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Mon, 24 Oct 2005 12:02:05 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Micha Berger" <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: colors

Rn TK <T613K@aol.com> wrote:
>> From RSRH, "Collected Writings" (Volume III page.  126):
>> We find only three terms to encompass the colors of the  spectrum:
>> adom for red, yaroq for yellow and green, and  techeiles for blue
>> and violet....

> Amazingly apropos reference, how did you find it so fast or how did you  know
> about it?  AFAIK there is no concordance for the writings of  Hirsch!

I had the quote on tap from
<http://www.aishdas.org/mesukim/5764/shelach.pdf>, and develop
the ideas in <http://www.aishdas.org/mesukim/5764/chukas.pdf> and

It also figures significantly in my manuscript. In it, I will try to
show that the Maharal's understanding of Torah, Avodah, and Gemilus
Chassadim, the Gra's understanding of nefesh, ru'ach and neshamah, and
Hirsch's understanding of the meanings of red-green-blue and 6-7-8 are a
common model of the human condition. (Even though the Maharal and RSRH
have different understandings of Nara"n than the Gra's, they still use
the same triad in a different context.)

Thus, not only does RSRH show that blue and eight (including the 70th,
Israel's, qorban on Shemini Atzeres, mei'inyana deyoma) is involved
with mitzvos that have to do with qedushah, and red with tum'ah (parah
adumah), but there are many, many other mitzvos that gain meaning when
viewed from this context. Everything from the keilim in the miqdash
(three with crowns, three without) to Rabban Gamliel's pesach (avodah),
matzah (Torah), maror (chesed; "imo anochi betzarah").



Micha Berger             When you come to a place of darkness,
micha@aishdas.org        you don't chase out the darkness with a broom.
http://www.aishdas.org   You light a candle.
Fax: (270) 514-1507        - R' Yekusiel Halberstam of Klausenberg zt"l

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Date: Mon, 24 Oct 2005 10:58:53 -0400
From: "Russell Levy" <russlevy@gmail.com>
RE: colors in the gemara

[R Simon Montagu:]
>> Are there other exceptions or problems? Was "kachol" used as "blue"
>> in gemara times?

> I'm fairly sure that "kachol" was coined by Eliezer Ben Yehuda

It was used as blue just as much as tcheles or zahav were used (I think
sukkah 51a or somewhere around there, and somewhere around kiddushin 12a
that sheisha is the same colour as kuchlah) -- it seems it may be antimony
(which I don't know anything about, but supposedly is blue-white. But
it also seems to be a different colour from techeles.

Rashi uses the word kachol a few times IIRC, but it's hard to tell if
he's referring to the colour or to eye shadow that is that colour.

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Date: Mon, 24 Oct 2005 08:52:03 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Micha Berger" <micha@aishdas.org>
RE: Lulavim

RDK <DovGoldie@cs.com> wrote:
> There is a machlokes rishonim whether a change in market value (shaar) is
> considered a "matana mu-etes" or not. The tzad that it is seems to be based
> on the notion that market fluctuations are normal, and can be expected. If
> lulavim have never been held up in Egypt before, I don't know that it could
> be considered as such.

What's interesting about shenei sha'arim as a matanah mu'etes is that
the size of the matanah is measured in a percentage of price. An actual
matanah would be measured in absolute dollars/sheqel/zuz. For example,
if the deal were for commercial real estate, a change in sha'ar of a
mere 0.25% could come to many years' salary for most of us. Mu'etes?

Perhaps, once we allow context to define "mu'etes", we could use the
market to define it. A matanah mu'etes is something most people would
be mocheil. So, could we say that any change in sha'ar which does not
cause a measurable change in demand is "mu'etes"? This definition not
only includes the total price of the object, but also the elasticity of
demand -- a major chiddush, and not one to be taken seriously merely on
my own peleitzos. Lulavim, for example, have very little elasticity --
few people would go back to the days of relying on the shul's 4 minim.

Another issue: We rely on the time of qinyan for defining Mi shepara. And
lehalkhah, qinyan occurs at the time that the merchandise changes hands.
However, lehalakhah, forms of qinyan accepted by civil law are also

Is this qinyan cheftzah, i.e. getting ba'alus, only, or also for qinyan
achrayus (e.g. the qinyan sudar used to appoint a sheliach for mechiras
chameitz)? By sevara, I would think both, as the problem is posed as a
more extreme version of mechusrei AMANA, and we have the whole question
of whether devarim yeish bahem mechusrei amana (in which case we would
say that not every mechusar amana is cursed with a Mi shepara).

In the juristictions I know of, accepting funds causes an achrayus to
sell the object. (This is why many mail-order and web stores don't
clear the funds until they're ready to ship.) However, there is no
particular cheftzah involved, it's a chiyuv gavra to provide the cheftzeh
specified. So, today and in such areas, would the person be subject to
Mi shepara -- or would it be geneivah?


PS on the subject of qinyan achrayus: I would argue that qiddushin is a
qinyan achrayus, not qinyan cheftzah. After all, the same qinyan is chal
whether the qiddushin is done with a perutah or a multi-thousand-dollar
ring. No question of onaas mamon.

Micha Berger             When you come to a place of darkness,
micha@aishdas.org        you don't chase out the darkness with a broom.
http://www.aishdas.org   You light a candle.
Fax: (270) 514-1507        - R' Yekusiel Halberstam of Klausenberg zt"l

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Date: Mon, 24 Oct 2005 14:39:21 -0400
From: MPoppers@kayescholer.com
Re: colors in the gemara

In Avodah V16 #8, RAM wrote:
> It seems to me that #3 of this list is pretty close to the gemara's
> situation, provided that we stipulate "zahav" and "techeles" to be the
> names of *substances* rather than of colors.
> Are there other exceptions or problems? Was "kachol" used as "blue"
> in gemara times?

and Micha quoted b'shaim RSRH:
> We find only three terms to encompass the colors of the spectrum:
> adom for red, yaroq for yellow and green, and techeiles for blue
> and violet....

What do you do (and, he asked semi-rhetorically, as i'y'H' he'll soon
check :-), what does RSRH do) with "sai'ar _tzahov_" (3-13:30 ff.)?

Chag Someach to all from
Michael Poppers * Elizabeth, NJ, USA

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Date: Wed, 26 Oct 2005 23:31:29 -0400
From: "Moshe Y. Gluck" <mslatfatf@access4less.net>
Ikarei Hashkafah

The following is an article I've been meaning to write for a long time. I
think that something like this should be taught in every Yeshiva and Bais
Ya'akov. It wasn't taught to me or to the few women I asked. I write it
now as our Wiki is picking up steam, to open it up for public comment, to
perfect it for publication in the Wiki. It is based on my understanding of
the Ramchal in Derech Hashem and Mesillas Yesharim, and bits and pieces
that I've picked up. I realize that these are devarim ha'omdim b'rumo
shel olam, and I hope I haven't made any mistakes! However, if I have,
I hope they will be rectified here.

I have a very busy few months coming up, what with Yeshiva, work and my
wife's illness (Sheva bas Tamar, l'refuah sheleima b'soch sha'ar cholei
Yisroel). Besides that, when the usual suspects <g> start rolling out the
Maharal's and the Rav Dessler's (not to mention the Moreh Nevuchim's and
Ramban's) I will definitely be above my pay grade. So, I may drop out of
active discussion, but the bottom line is that I hope that this will be
a catalyst for AYH, and eventually will be published. I send it both to
Areivim and Avodah for maximum exposure to the different clientele. Unless
someone thinks otherwise, I assume that comments should be on Avodah.


Ikarei Hshkafah:

Before this world existed, G-d, a being we have no comprehension of,
was unable to bestow anything to anyone, as there was no one to receive
anything from Him. G-d, by His nature is a giving being, and therefore
He decided to create a being able to accept His beneficence. Therefore,
He created Man (Adam), to be the recipient of this goodness.

However, in His wisdom he felt that it was inappropriate for anyone
to receive something that he did not toil for. Therefore, he decided
that man must have free will to make the choice to do G-d's desire -
or not. If Man would make the choice to do G-d's wish, then the entire
universe would reach its ultimate goal, and Man would be able to accept
G-d's beneficence forevermore, with no limitations.

G-d created the universe as a temporary stopping point for Man, as the
place where this choice would be made. This was necessary, because G-d's
beneficence is incompatible with free choice - for one who can experience
the goodness of G-d cannot choose to do other than his will. Therefore,
our universe - where G-d's beneficence can't be recognized - was the
place for Man's choice, while G-d created a second world (a World-to-Come)
to be the place of Man's ultimate reward.

Adam made the wrong choice. G-d, in his mercy, decided to extend the scope
of the world and to give Adam's (and Eve's) descendents the opportunity
to rectify Adam's misdeed. However, his error was so great that it was
not possible that it be rectified in one generation - and indeed, we are
still working to rectify it today. The choices we make decide our own
fate in the World-to-Come, and influence the cosmic fate of the universe.

We are faced with a dilemma: How do we know if the choices we make are
the choices we should be making? G-d provided for this by giving us
a document providing a master plan for our choices, and by giving us
a tradition as to how to interpret this document. The document is the
Torah, and the tradition is the oral learning of the greatest Torah
Scholars of each generation.

The conclusions we can draw from this are that Man's complete purpose
in this world is to be a recipient of G-d's goodness. That is, to enjoy
the pleasures of the World-to-Come. A condition to enable this is that
Man make the proper choices in our world, so that it be appropriate for
him to receive reward. The Torah and accompanying oral tradition teach
us the proper choice.

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Date: Thu, 27 Oct 2005 01:06:39 -0400
From: "Moshe & Ilana Sober" <sober@pathcom.com>
rabbinic misconduct

RAB, on arvm 16:34, raises the case of a prominent Rav who is known to
behave inappropriately with women who come to him for advice, and the
problem that these women are quite reluctant to reveal his identity.

This reminds me of I Shumel 2:2-27. Rashi and Radak say that "yishkavun"
is k'mashma'o, although they also cite the midrash that bnei Eli did
not actually have relations with the women who came to bring korbanos,
but only delayed their return to their husbands.

If b'nei Eli did actually take advantage of these women and had relations
with them, some interesting questions arise. Eli had heard of this - from
whom? If he had reliable information that his sons were raping and/or
seducing married women - chiyuv mitah, yehareg v'al ya'avor, producing
mamzerim - why did he consider some rather gentle words of mussar
"lo tovah hashmuah asher anochi shomea maavirim am H'" sufficient? "Lo
tovah" is a bit of an understatement here, no? Especially since his sons
didn't listen.

Of course God rebukes Eli - "... vat'chabad et banecha mimeni..." (2:29)
and punishes him severely for his failure to protect the people from
his sons' abuse.

Relevant to our case because it shows that (1) big rabbis can commit
very serious aveiros and (2) the system doesn't always work to prevent
this - their own father was basically a tzadik, and the kohen gadol,
and yet he did not do anything effective to prevent this abuse.

 - Ilana

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Date: Thu, 27 Oct 2005 08:31:48 -0400
From: "Rich, Joel" <JRich@Segalco.com>
Kohain gadol

I've always assumed that in bayit sheini the kohain gadol no longer died if
he entered the kodesh kadoshim while being imperfect or they would've died
each year.  Anyone have any mesora on this?

Joel Rich

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