Avodah Mailing List

Volume 25: Number 109

Tue, 25 Mar 2008

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Message: 1
From: Arie Folger <afolger@aishdas.org>
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2008 19:21:50 +0100
Re: [Avodah] R' Marc Angel Redux

Some poster (can't recall who) suggested that perhaps bedi'avad even the 
conversions done by people who are clearly not qualified (for example, C 
ra'bbais) should be accepted as a giyur done by a beit din shel hedyotot.

In response, it should be stated that while there indeed exists such a kind of 
giyur, there are qualifications even for sitting on a beit din shel hedyotot, 
namely, the dayanim hedyotot need to be kosher as witnesses and by extension 
as hedyot judges. this disqualifies heretics, whether intentional ones or 
unintentional ones, as well as generally all tinokot shenishbu that do not 
keep Shabbat. Obviously, this also excludes individuals with very long beards 
that have no qualms getting involved in monetary improprieties. It also 
disqualifies intermarried hedyotot.

For a source, please see Shut Yabi'a Omer VIII, Even ha'Ezer 12:9.

Kol tuv,
Arie Folger

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Message: 2
From: Daniel Eidensohn <yadmoshe@012.net.il>
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2008 23:36:56 +0200
Re: [Avodah] R' Angel & Geirus Redux

Michael Makovi wrote:
>>  > Well, as I said, I've seen numerous statements that a nonreligious Jew
>>  > today is a tinok she'nishba/shogeg, and bears no guilt for what he
>>  > does, b'klal. I am having trouble remembering exactly where I have
>>  > seen this (too many places; it's like asking where I read that pork is
>>  > treif), but I know Einayim Lirot (English translation from Urim: Eyes
>>  > to See) has a chapter on this.
>>  > Mikha'el Makovi
To reiterate. You are claiming that the individual members of  
Reform/Conservative have 1) the halachic status of  tinok shenishba and 
that consequently they bear  no guilt at for their actions which violate 
the Torah. However the correct use of the term tinok shenishba (Shabbos 
68a) is concerning one who is totally ignorant of being Jewish and of 
anything about Torah. Once they receive some knowledge they are 
responsible for not finding out more. It is questionable whether  they 
are still tinok shenishba after this point. From our perspective the 
issue is primarily whether we can aid them to do teshuva and whether 
they are a threat to our communities. They are not given a free pass 
that exempts them from mitzvos. Their rabbinical leadership is even more 
liable because they are much more aware  of their deviation from 
traditional Torah observance. It is also true that it is not always 
helpful to have direct confrontations - but that is a question of 
politics and sociology.

You provide 3 citations to support your contention

1) Dr.  Richard Joel - his statement is not about tinok shenishba nor 
does he refer to guilt. Not relevant

2) You cite an approbation of R' Zalman Nechemia Goldberg. Says nothing 
about tinok shenishba or guilt. Not relevant

3) You menton R' Kasher - without quoting what  he actually said - that 
non-religious Jews have the status of tinok shenishba. Also don't see 
the relevance. Does he say that therefore they bear  no guilt for their 

These are not serious citations.

I have cited the Rambam, Rav Moshe Feinstein, Rav Henkin and the Ginas 
Veradim and yet you have not produced a single posek who disagrees. At 
this point you said you are only not sure whether the Chazon Ish is 
understood as consistent with the others and is thus describing a tactic 
to get them to do teshuva - even though they are sinners.

Let me add a few more sources  that  clearly indicate the uneducated 
masses  bear guilt for sinning. I have more if these are not  adequate 
including the Radvaz, R' Ovadia Yosef, R'  Wosner, Tzitz  Eliezar.

*Igros Moshe (**Orech Chaim 4:91.6): **Question: *Is it permissible to 
make a minyan  in a room  of a Conservative synagogue which does not 
conduct themselves according to the halacha? *Answer*: There is a basic 
distinction that needs to be made. Concerning the Conservative 
synagogues it is not permitted  to make a minyan even in a different 
room since it is well known that they are a group who reject a number of 
laws of the Torah. The gemora (Avoda Zara 17a) says that one must stay 
far away from heretics, heresy and idolatry. Therefore even heretics 
for  one issue of the Torah are considered rejecters of the Torah as is 
stated in the Rambam(Hilchos Teshuva 3:8) and they have the full status 
of heretics as  is  stated in Hilchos Teshuva (3:6). Even though they 
are inadvertent heretics and are like tinok shenishba (captive children 
amongst non?Jews) because they have been raised that way by their 
parents and  their surroundings. They therefore aren?t punished by 
Heaven and they aren't punished by being lowered into a pit and not 
taken out which is mentioned in the Rambam (Hilchos Rotzeach 4:10) as is 
stated in the Rambam (Hilchos Mamrim 3:3). Nevertheless they are 
heretics and it is necessary to stay away from them as is stated in 
Avoda Zara (17a). This that the Rambam (Hilchos Mamrim 3:3) concludes by 
saying that these descendants of the original heretics who are tinok 
shenishba should be brought back to proper religious observance and they 
are to be drawn to this with peaceful words until they return to the 
correct practice of Torah is not relevant in their gathering places 
i.e., their synagogues which is not a place of repentance and not every 
person is appropriate for this. In contrast those Orthodox synagogues 
which are not run properly e.g., they don?t have a proper mechitza or 
they use a microphone are not ? G?d forbid ? rejecters of these mitzvos. 
They simply don?t treat  them with proper seriousness even  though they 
essentially believe in all the mitzvos of the Torah  and  just over time 
came to incorrectly treat these prohibited things as something 
permitted. They are essentially good Jews and on occasion their 
non-observance of some mitzvos is totally inadvertent. Concerning the 
Orthodox Jews who are lax in their observance there is no requirement to 
keep away from them. Consequently it is permitted to make a separate 
minyan in a different room of their synagogue. That is permitted only if 
it is done in a manner that no one would suspect that they are praying 
in the  main sanctuary. For example if it has been publicized already or 
even before becoming well known if there is a separate entrance. 
Concerning whether it is appropriate to rebuke this latter group ? if 
there is a reasonable possibility they will listen then they should be 
rebuked but if not it is better that they sin inadvertently.

*Binyan Tzion - New (#23): This is a theoretical halachic view which is 
not meant to be for actual practice? *Regarding Jewish sinners of our 
time, I am not sure what their halachic status is since due to our many 
sins the disease has spread so much that  the majority of them view 
Shabbos desecration to be permitted. Perhaps they have the halachic 
status of those who think what they are doing is entirely permitted 
(omer mutar) which is only close to being a deliberate sinner. There are 
some of them who pray on Shabbos and make Kiddush but afterwards they 
violate Shabbos by doing work prohibited by both the Torah and the 
Rabbis. The fact is that one who transgresses the laws of Shabbos is 
considered as a heretic because by rejecting Shabbos he is rejection 
Creation and the Creator. However this person is acknowledging Shabbos, 
Creation and the Creator through his prayers and making Kiddush. 
Furthermore their children who come after them - who have never known or 
even heard about the laws of Shabbos ? are identical  to the Tzadokim 
who are not considered heretics even though they profane Shabbos because 
they are simple imitating the actions of their parents [and not because 
they are willfully transgressing Shabbos]. Thus they are considered like 
tinok shenishba (children who were captured by and raised amongst 
non?Jews). This is mentioned in simon 385 and also the Mabit (1:37) 
writes, ?It is also possible that even concerning the Tzadokim who do 
not normally live amongst Jews and therefore don?t know the basic 
aspects of the religion and are not disrespectful against the rabbis of 
the generation ? are also not considered as violating the laws 
deliberately.? Many of the sinners  of the present generation are 
similar to them and are even better than them.  And this that R? 
Shimshon was strict with the Karaites to consider their wine as 
non?Jewish wine was not because they violated the holidays [because they 
had a different calendar] which is comparable to violating Shabbos. 
Rather he was stringent with them because they rejected fundamental 
principles of Judaism such a the way of doing circumcision and they 
didn?t accept the laws of divorce and marriage ? which caused  their 
children to be mamzerim. However concerning these fundamentals, the 
majority of sinners in our day have not transgressed them. Consequently 
in my humble opinion those who wish to treat the touching of wine by 
these modern sinners as prohibited stam wine  - they should be blessed. 
However even those who are lenient in this matter have authorities to 
justify their actions - as long as it has not been determined that these 
transgressors actually know about the laws of Shabbos and are arrogantly 
violating Shabbos in the presence of 10 Jews. If that is true than it is 
definite that they are full heretics and the wine they touch is prohibited.

*Yabiya Omer(3:21):*Greater than this we find concerning the Karaites of 
modern times who are considered tinok shenishba amongst the non?Jews. 
Nevertheless if they are warned about their transgressions but they 
don?t want to return to observing the Oral Torah they are to be killed. 
This is stated in the Mishna LeMelech (Hilchos Malve v?loveh 5:2) in the 
name of the Mabit and the Radvaz. This is also the view of Maharam ben 
Chaviv in Kol Gadol (#27). Nevertheless they are invalid to serve as 
witnesses as  is stated in the Maharksh (#33). And this is surely true 
concerning those non?observant Jews who are found amongst us and they 
see that the religious woman cover their har and wear modest clothing. 
Therefore it is certain that after they have been warned and cautioned 
regarding religious observance they are considered as deliberately 
transgressing the Torah. And even R? Akiva Eiger who permits those who 
shave with a razor to be witnesses because they don?t think that shaving 
is prohibited ? that is only where they have not been warned against the 
practise. However if they were informed that they are not valid 
witnesses because of shaving it is clear from his teshuva  that they are 
invalid witnesses. ? And  surely where the beis din warns her and 
instructs here that an action is completely prohibited ? if she 
transgresses what she was warned about she is divorced and doesn?t 
receive her kesubah because she is viewed as deliberately sinning and 
there is no greater religious transgression than this.


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Message: 3
From: Cantor Wolberg <cantorwolberg@cox.net>
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2008 19:55:36 -0400
[Avodah] Sheva Brochos

Someone wrote:
There is no such thing as three days of sheva brochos.

Not true. Check Kesuvos 7b. If he's an alma and she's an almana, you  
have one day of brochos.
If she's an almana (and he isn't) some hold the simcha is only three  
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Message: 4
From: Cantor Wolberg <cantorwolberg@cox.net>
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2008 20:25:15 -0400
[Avodah] Parshas Parah

There is a machlokes amongst the Poskim whether the reading of Parshas  
Parah is a Torah obligation today.
To be mindful of the opinion that it is Min Hatorah, one should   
concentrate at the reading to be yotze this Mitzvah.
According to all opinions, women are not obligated in this mitzvah.     
Shulchan Aruch w/Mishnah Brurah 685:7, Moadim U'zmanim 2:168

I would guess that women are not m'chuyav because they didn't  
participate in the cheit of the egel hazahav.  And disagreements?

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Message: 5
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2008 21:05:10 -0400
[Avodah] Tinok sheNishba today

On Thu, Mar 20, 2008 at 03:28pm IST, R Michael Makovi wrote (on the
thread "R' Angel & Geirus Redux"):
: Well, as I said, I've seen numerous statements that a nonreligious Jew
: today is a tinok she'nishba/shogeg, and bears no guilt for what he
: does, b'klal...

I have as well. However, the fact that many repeat something doesn't
make it real. C.f. RSBA's ever-growing list of phantom maamarei chazal.

However, something hit me on the bus-ride home from work...

Teshuvos discuss the knowledge of Torah. Sermons discuss culpability
for not choosing Torah.

As I wrote recently, someone who learns Torah in a context where Torah
miSinai is treated as a myth isn't going to gain much emunah from that
knowledge. Even worse, he has much to unlearn.

So, perhaps they are two distinct things. What I've been alling TsN
would qualify as oneis. Whereas a true TsN is ignorant - a variant of

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             In the days of our sages, man didn't sin unless
micha@aishdas.org        he was overcome with a spirit of foolishness.
http://www.aishdas.org   Today, we don't do a mitzvah unless we receive
Fax: (270) 514-1507      a spirit of purity.      - Rabbi Israel Salanter

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Message: 6
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2008 14:39:15 -0400
Re: [Avodah] schechtworthy

On Mon, Mar 24, '08 @ 10:36pm PDT, I wrote:
> The phrase "poreitz geder" is biblical, although I think RDR means
> deOraisa. Koheles 10:8: "veporeitz geder yishkanu nachash". So, even if
> derabbanan, it's described as death-worthy.

> But here we're not talking about issur; LAD, it's something simpler.
> Somoene who proved himself capable of resisting positive social pressure
> in one sin simply can't be presumed not to cut corners in other ways.

Half of my thesis, which was based on a post by RnCL from last year, is
that a poreitz geder is defined in terms of violating the local locale's
pesaq. Thus, we have to be talking about issur, even if it's only assur in
the eyes of some -- assuming that "some" include the local rav/rabbanim.

What I was trying to say is that peritzas geder itself is not an issur.
Shelomo haMelekh writes harshly against it -- thus the concept is
"biblical" for those of us who want to be pendantic over RDR's choice
of words. But peritzas geder isn't assur deOraisa -- which is what I
think RDR intended to talk about.

Is it assur deRabbanan to violate minhag hamaqom, in particular when
using the word "minhag" to refer to local pesaq? I don't know. When I
wrote "we're not talking about issur", I assumed not.

The other half of my thesis, for which I still owe RnCL documentation,
is that even someone who violated no issurim, technically, since he
is capable of that level of contrarianism as to be worthy of death by
snakebite, we can't assume he'll conform WRT hilkhos shechitah.

However, even without documentation, we already cited a number of cases
where this was almost followed lemaaseh:

1- RSZ's case of the the shaving German in a Lubavitch kehillah.
The LR justified his use of another pesaq only because it was his point
of origin. Implied is that if an L chasid had chosen to use a shaver,
his shechitah wouldn't be good. Notice here it's a divergence in pesaq.

2- I started to bring the case of the Litvisher shocheit in Hungary whose
wife didn't cover her hair. Here the pesaq is consistent, however, in
Litta this was a commonplace violation, and not peritzas geder. Again,
the Maharshag allowed the use of this shocheit, butr only on technical
grounds. He wasn't a poreitz geder, his wife was. (And who ever said
Jewish husbands are controlling?)

Tir'u baTov!

PS: With thanks to RDR, who had to put up with getting his post rejected
for replying to something I didn't mean to say. I figured it was better
to clarify than to have people reply to his (very logical) misunderstood
version. Moderator's perk, I guess. Or maybe just an abuse of my power.

Micha Berger             Nearly all men can stand adversity,
micha@aishdas.org        but if you want to test a man's character,
http://www.aishdas.org   give him power.
Fax: (270) 514-1507                      -Abraham Lincoln

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Message: 7
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2008 20:51:50 -0400
Re: [Avodah] schechtworthy

RDR pointed out off-list that I've run away with a theory not actually
in the original teshuvah. Although I'm not as sure as he that the theory
isn't correct. So...

Just a reminder, from the two sentences quoted from a newsletter,
all we know is that the teshuvah is written with the perspective that
television is assur. We have no idea that the Shevet haLevi thought
that TV is assur lekhol hadei'os and the fellow is simply an avaryan,
or -- as RSZ suggested -- that he was aware of and acknowledged a shitah
lehaqeil, but it's irrelevent for our purposes since the shocheit would
be a poretiz geder anyway.


Micha Berger             "'When Adar enters, we increase our joy'
micha@aishdas.org         'Joy is nothing but Torah.'
http://www.aishdas.org    'And whoever does more, he is praiseworthy.'"
Fax: (270) 514-1507                     - Rav Dovid Lifshitz zt"l

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Message: 8
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2008 22:34:50 -0400
[Avodah] National vs Individual

On Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 02:18:18PM +0200, Michael Makovi wrote:
: Some time ago, we had a thread on to what extent Jewish identity is
: communal/national versus individual. I chose to place the individual
: lower than many others did, but I think everyone can agree, however,
: that national identity is a very important component, regardless of
: where it lies on the gradient.

My position was actually that both are true. I repeated RYBS's thesis
in "Community" that there is a basic dialectic: Community exists to
insure that the individuals within it have their needs met. However,
it is equally true that the individual's highest calling is to serve
the community.

It is equally true that a community is a set of individuals, and that an
individual could be viewed as part of a community. It's a question of
which is viewed as primary and which is derived. And both perspectives
are true. I used the buzzwords of "mamlekhes kohanim -- a kingdom of
individual priests" and "goy qadosh - a nation that is holy as a unit".

I suggested that this was the difference between the beris at Har Sinai,
which was between HQBH and a set of individuals determined to work for a
common cause, and the beris at Arvos Moav, between Hashem and the nation
as a corporate entity, obligating the people to serve their parts in
the greater whole.

: Hashem created us as davka not a nation, not a mass of individuals -
: "am zu yatzarti li". Any individual can be a holy tzadik. But to
: create an entire nation that as one united whole that is tzodek, that
: is an entirely different matter. And even if one does not want to go
: with Rav Kook and REB on the nation, one can just as well go with Rav
: Hirsch on the kehilla...

And yet, as I just posted, RSRH's kehillah was a group of individuals
who worked to ennoble themselves. The kehillah was defined as the
derived value.

: The Lubavitcher Rebbe said a person who loves G-d but not the Jewish
: people, his love will not last. But one who loves the Jewish people
: but not G-d - nurture his love for his people and it will grow to
: encompass G-d too.
: And of course, with Rut, "your people will be my people" came before
: "your G-d will be my G-d"...

For that matter, the doxology of Shema isn't "H' E-lokeinu H' echad"
but "_Shema_Yisrael_ HEH"E".

But the question isn't A vs B but which is the primary value and which
is the derived one -- or perhaps both.

On Sun, Mar 23, 2008 at 10:45pm EDT, R Richard Wolpoe wrote:
: Psycho-thearapy was supposed to help people be more socialyl functional
: human beings. At times it emphasizees a narcisstic self-reflection
: Mussar -or at least basd mussar - falls preyto the same problem

Bad anything can fall pray to a problem. The quesstion is whether it is
a pitfall inherent in the system.

Pyschothrapy doesn't start with a predefined ideal; rather, it aspires
to enable people to reach their own desired ends.

Mussar, however, aims people at a particular perspective on the Torah's
ideal. One informed by RYS stories that tell you not to daven on YK to
the exclusion of helping the davener next to you. That attending to a
baby left with an overly young babysitter outranks Kol Nidrei, even if
everyone is safe. That one's own safety is of no matter if others have
cholera and need nursing. That one does not wash with more than the
minimum of water if the water has to be brought uphill by a servant
girl, or to eat a slow and leisurly meal if a woman has to wait for
you to finish before going home for her Shabbos meal. That one of the
central chumros in matzah is care for the almanos who have to make them.
Not to cheat the gov't out of its postal fees, etc...

IOW, Mussar is about tiqun hamidos, but the person who is shaleim is
one with true yir'as Hashem and places the gashmiyus of anothers in a
central role in his own ruchnius.

It is thus less prone to such ills than some other derakhim.

: The Torah was given to effect  a mamleches kohanim and Goy Kaddosh by HKBH's
: own words and I am locked into an argument that Torah is about
: self-prefection, an attidue probably first seriously considered by  RY
: Salnter or his followers.

I vehemently disagree. Moshe asks "Mah tov umah H' doreish mimekha". His
answer is not to part of of a national whole. Nor is Mikhah's answer to
the same question. And Chavaquq came and established it all on "vetzadiq
be'emunaso yichyeh" -- speaking quite eloquently to the lonely man
of faith.

According to the Rambam, mitzvos exist to provide da'as of HQBH. RSG in
Emunos veDei'os and Rihal in the Kuzari write that mitzvos were given as a
means to refine the soul. Similar to Rabbeinu Yonah, who describe them as
the means to spiritual health. The the Ran and the Ikarrim (his talmid),
speak about mitzvos enabling the soul to connect to the Divine Good.
The Besh"t's model of deveiqus is pretty much the same, but in more
modern Qabbalistic terms. The Ramchal defines mitzvos as preparing on
ereev Shabbos so that one is capable of receiving the Divine Good --
in olam hava. R' Chaim Volozhiner also signs onto the "perfect the soul"
model, to the extent that the avos were able to deduce all the mitzvos by
feeling the imperfections in their own souls and deducing what was needed.
RSRH speaks in nearly mussar terms, however his ish shaleim is phrased
in terms of TIDE, not the language of middos.

I actually can't think of anyone who defines mitzvos other than in terms
of some form of self perfection. I think that's sufficient to dispute the
claim that it's some invention of RYS's. But moreso, I can't think of a
maqor for defining the function of mitzvos in national terms.

Even leshonos that play down the value of mitzvos outside EY... First,
they speak in terms of EY, not nationhood. They do not speak of Bavel at
a time when most Jews were there; and they do speak of a person who lived
in the middle of nowhere in EY at a time when few people did. But more to
the point, they aren't necessarily saying the role is about nationhood;
avira de'aretz machkim is but one quote supporting the notion that EY
is of value on an individual level.

:                                                    The klal is a ubiquitous
: theme in Yekke hashkafa in genral and in Hirsch in Particualr [see 19
: letters!] but since it is not "politically correct" in America and in the
: mussar movement to consider the peoplehood over the individual so it gets
: white-washed

RSRH's kelal is a derived value. In Horeb, mitzvos teach truths that
allow a person to develop his godliness. TIDE ennobles *the self*.

You write as though the mussar movement is alive and well and has any
serious impact on contemporary thought. Halevai! However, I would agree
that the US's stress on autonomy and the self-made man will play down
concepts of nationalism.

I recently had a Russian Jewish co worker who explained that this is why
baseball is such an American sport. It gives each player his turn in the
spotlight and a chance to succeed as an individual. (He then continued
with an analysis of football and US history; the line of scrimmage and
the westward move of the national border throughout the 19th cent...)

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             It is harder to eat the day before Yom Kippur
micha@aishdas.org        with the proper intent than to fast on Yom
http://www.aishdas.org   Kippur with that intent.
Fax: (270) 514-1507                       - Rabbi Israel Salanter

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             It is a glorious thing to be indifferent to
micha@aishdas.org        suffering, but only to one's own suffering.
http://www.aishdas.org                 -Robert Lynd, writer (1879-1949)
Fax: (270) 514-1507

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Message: 9
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2008 22:50:33 -0400
[Avodah] Niskatnu haDoros

On Sun, Mar 23, '08 at 2:48am UMT, kennethgmiller@juno.com wrote (on
the subject "R' Angel & Geirus Redux"):
: As we distance ourselves from our roots, we're losing a great deal
: of sensitivity. We try to compensate for this loss of of subjective
: discernment by increasing our objective rules, but it pales in comparison.

: RMB's comment that "And thus, it's not calamitous." was intended to be
: comforting. But it is a cold comfort. But, I suppose, that's galus for ya.

I didn't intend to give nechamah. Nor is it related to galus. Nisqatnu
hadoros dates back to Moshe's petirah, and the need for Osniel to codify
rules for all the dinim lost with his passing.

My point was more to tie the change in halachic process with the change
in Jew. The loss of Jewish values is tragic, not the codification.

Contrary to RMShinnar's perception of my position, I do believe halakhah
could have evolved otherwise. Some may recall my speculation about
Issacerism, a parallel to Judaism named for another sheivet associated
with talmud Torah, that might have existed if the sheivet Yissachar
would have been around to return in Ezra's day. An implementation of the
beris that evolved so differently than ours that even though they
both implemenet beris Sinai, they might do so so differently, they
aren't recognizable as the same religion.

What I wrote is that given the loss of feel, the codification was
inevitable. Not good or bad in itself, just a natural consequence.

If someone tries to reopen questions because they consider the
codification an ossification that runs against the health of halakhah,
they have to start by restoring the Jews who were capable of playing with
those higher stakes, of being the giants on whose shoulders we stand.

And, to look at the same thing from a very different angle... If someone
could find a throwback, someone with the mesiras nefesh of R' Yehudah's
generaion who lived among R' Papa and Abyei (to cite the people who coined
"nisaqtnu hadoros), we would call that a BG gadol mimenu bechokhmah

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger                 Life is complex.
micha@aishdas.org                Decisions are complex.
http://www.aishdas.org               The Torah is complex.
Fax: (270) 514-1507                                - R' Binyamin Hecht

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Message: 10
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2008 23:05:01 -0400
[Avodah] Eis laasos

On Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 02:27:39PM +0200, Michael Makovi wrote:
: Or maybe, one individual missing the shofar is not enough. Maybe an
: eit la'asot lashem requires the *tzibur* to miss the shofar. Maybe eit
: la'asot lashem applies davka for a catastrophe involving the masses -
: perhaps it is not the individual's loss of contact with Hashem that is
: key, but either the tzibur's or the multitude of individuals'.

Eis la'asos Lashem is for Hashem, not the individual or the tzibur. It
requires a potential calamity so great that the entire historical
enterprise is in jepordy. Writing the mishnah was a good idea because
otherwise the TSBP may have been lost for all of humanity.

However, in the case of not hearing a shofar if the only opportunity is
in a synagogue with no mechitzah, I think RYBS's argument would be that
not hearing the shofar is the /more/ preservational decision.

Which is akin to my observation that the Rambam uses eis laasos to
describe gezeiros to protect on issur deOraisa by telling people to
neglect an asei besheiv ve'al ta'aseh. (Eg not blowing Shofar on Shabbos.)

But in terms of qum va'asei, we have all of four examples, and all appear
to be cases where one could argue the entire enterprise at stake.

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             "The most prevalent illness of our generation is
micha@aishdas.org        excessive anxiety....  Emunah decreases anxiety:
http://www.aishdas.org   'The Almighty is my source of salvation;  I will
Fax: (270) 514-1507      trust and not be afraid.'" (Isa 12) -Shalhevesya


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