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Volume 25: Number 246

Mon, 07 Jul 2008

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Message: 1
From: "Rich, Joel" <JRich@sibson.com>
Date: Mon, 7 Jul 2008 11:53:11 -0400
[Avodah] bar mitzvah - duraita or derabbanan

re: our earlier discussion on  bar mitzvah - duraita or derabbanan -see
nazir 29b especially Rashi D"H vr' yosi brebi yehudah who ties the
duraita position to the drasha on shimon vlevi that I mentioned.
Joel Rich
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Message: 2
From: "Russell Levy" <russlevy@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 7 Jul 2008 19:22:18 +0300
Re: [Avodah] Lechem Mishnah

Beitza 2b which according to rashi learns out v'hichinu for both, as well as
Tosafos there d"h v'haya b'yom hashishi, with his answer being that the
midrashim are cholek if man fell or not.

On Mon, Jul 7, 2008 at 4:38 PM, Rich, Joel <JRich@sibson.com> wrote:

>  Any sources as to whether 2 pieces of man fell on erev yom tov as well as
> erev shabbat?
> KT
> Joel Rich
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Message: 3
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Date: Mon, 7 Jul 2008 14:03:29 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Halachic Texts: More Background

On Fri, Jul 04, 2008 at 12:07:46AM -0400, Richard Wolpoe wrote:
:> Give me a rigorous definition of "new enough" that allows for ther Rambam
:> and not the Gra.

: I already did!. Shulchan Aruch Choshen Mishpat 25 wherein the mechabeir
: insisted that to'eh bidvar mishneh included posqim...

But that does NOT exclude the Gra. The Gra, each and every time he rules
against minhag, has a reason to say that the minhag was based on a ta'us
bidevar mishnah. He didn't overturn accepted pesaq just because he had a
batter sevara, it was only when he felt that the accepted pesaq was wrong.

- Making baqashos after benching (the "harachaman"s) on Shabbos
- Having MORE portions instead of fewer for the sake of lechem oni (an
  oxymoron, no? particularly since mishneh lechem on YT is itself iffy)
- Adding a proof from Zecharia at the end of a Aleinu, attributed to
  Yehoshua bin Nun (implies a rejection of that mesorah)

: Also see Heramann Stracks' quote that the "MAIN TASK" for posqim today is to
: read the codes and trace them back to the Talmud.  IOW, the Talmud isnow
: jsut  background for the p'saq, not the foreground.  I posit this morphed
: from the early Rishonim to the end of Rishonim and I can actually quote you
: sources to this effect.

One could attribute this to today's poseiq not being a throwback. Thus,
he has neither lesser wisdom nor precedent to confine him.

:> The Gra argued that he only changed pesaqim that were against halakhah
:> (as he understood it) in favor of those that are not.

: Guess what? so does every body else. I argue that bachurim not wearing a
: Tallis Gadol  is against p'saq, and the Darchei Moshe, Ba'er Heitev, and the
: Mishna Brura concur. As well as all Sepharadim and all yekkes.  It is
: interesting that the Ga overtunred many Ashkenazic models in favor of
: Sephardic alternatives but never pushed for Tallis Gadol - at least AFAIK

If it were assur to daven without a tallis gadol, then it would fit
the Gra's model to overturn Ashkenazi norm. It's not against halakhah
because tallis is a reshus. Same argument we had WRT tefillin on ch"m.
There is no actual issur against missing a day of tefillin. Both are
"merely" mechzei kemeshaqeir.

:> and probably a product of the collapse of the ghetto's culture
:> during his times.

: Nah.  Gra dies 1797, Napoleon invades Russian Emptire in  1812 The ghettoes
: only BEGAN collapsing 15 years after Gra's passing.

: Gra knew his pesakkim were private.  He never even tried to popularize
: them.  Those who reached back to the GRA to create a new Halachic norm
: really wer quite radical to abandon Minhag Avos.

These two paragraphs largely cancel. By shifting "blame" of making the
Gra's rulings common practice to his students, you move the time that
this happened to after the fall of the ghetto. But I didn't mean it
literally. Chassidus started because the old mores just weren't enough
to hold people in anymore. The ghetto was porous enough that simply
relying on norm wasn't working.

: Let's face it, If any one else said about Halachah what the Gra said.[ you
: fill in the blanks]

That's not the question. The question is whether what the Gra said still
within the eilu va'eilu of halakhah.

On Thu, Jul 03, 2008 at 09:04:00PM +0000, kennethgmiller@juno.com wrote:
: ... I would like to suggest that anyone unfamiliar with the word
: "mimetic" should go out of their way to read "Rupture And Reconstruction:
: The Transformation Of Contemporary Orthodoxy" by R' Haym Soloveitchik,
: I find it to be an excellent history of the transformation of halachic
: Judaism from being based on what we learned from out ancestors, to one
: based on what we learn from printed texts. The word "ghetto" appears in
: that article exactly once, and I think it might be debatable whether or
: not he supports RMB's post. Tze ul'mad.

He does not.

I wrote about why I disagree with R"D HS before on list, and blogged
about it as well.

Particularly given his name, I find it particularly ironic. How can
someone named for R' Chaim Brisker think that mimeticism held sway in 19th
cent Litta, only to collapse during the war years and the population shift
away from Eastern Europe? What about all the changes in practice brought
on by Chassidus, talmidei haGra, and the chumros of his own namesake?

RD HS writes about two poles: mimeticism and textualism, minhag avos and
sevara. I posited a third pole -- derekh. The initial response to the
break in status quo in the 18th cent, well before RD HS's rupture, was the
establishment of movements. (Nebich some of those movements left Yahadus,
but that's not our topic.) Having distinct pesaqim that are justified
by the Ism of the movement unifies its population. Aside from simply
making sense -- it's easier to follow halakhah with a modicum of kavanah
if the ideal driving your lifestyle and your pesaq are consistent. And
so SA haRav isn't always halakhah as pasqened before Chassidus.

Yes, mimeticism finally collapsed when Eastern Europe did. But as RD HS
himself notes, the MB was wreitten BEFORE that collapse, and is repleat
with cases of choosing the pesaq with the stronger textual argument
over normal practice. Mimeticism was no longer dominant well before
then. What really fell was that derekh-based idealism. When we stopped
losing children in excitement to competing Isms, we also lost the need
to tie our pesaqim to derekh.

Then, textualism alone was left.

(BTW, textualism includes the historical rov poseqim. Mimeticism is what
most people do, not what argument most intelligensia accept.)

On Sun, Jul 06, 2008 at 08:46:17PM -0400, Richard Wolpoe wrote:
: RYBS once showed that eino ra'uy l'achilas kelev is not a LAB experiment
: [with a black lab or a chocolate lab] but it is the estiamte of what the
: POSEIK sees as eino Ra'uy.

This may be a manifestation of the Brisker notion that only halakhah
can serve as a basis for halakhah. An opinion which made the Briskers
early textualists, since derekh based pesaq had no interest to them.
IOW, you don't check with a dog for the same reason you don't check the
identify of a chilazon with an archeologist or checking the identity of
"orez" as the word was used by the gemara.

But that would make it a difficult argument to get non-Briskers to

: I willconcede that Halcha is NOT an exact science, but that is imho NTO an
: excuse for TOTAL subjectivity. There must be a way to have object criteria.
: Why?
:    1. We ahve a concept of To'eh bidvar Hamishah
:    2. We have the concept of an errant Sanhedrin

Again, a weighting scheme would be a middle ground between "TOTAL
subjectivity" and objective determinism. Something that allows people to
weigh different concerns differently, which we see in practice is true
of noted poseqim, and yet gives limits to what is possible halakhah,
and what is not.

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             Never must we think that the Jewish element
micha@aishdas.org        in us could exist without the human element
http://www.aishdas.org   or vice versa.
Fax: (270) 514-1507                     - Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch

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Message: 4
From: "Moshe Y. Gluck" <mgluck@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 7 Jul 2008 13:34:40 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Your brother's a Mumar; here's the solution!

> > (It doesn't say that Avrohom loved Sorah at
> > all, but that's  a different story.)
R'n TK:
> > She is the only one of the Imahos about whom it specifically says that
> > husband wept when she died.
R' YG:
> But note that none of the Imahos are described as loving their husbands.

Are any women in Tanach described as loving their husbands?


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Message: 5
From: JoshHoff@aol.com
Date: Mon, 7 Jul 2008 13:41:49 EDT
[Avodah] LechemMishneh

In a message dated 7/7/2008 11:13:58 A.M. Eastern Daylight Time,  
avodah-request@lists.aishdas.org writes:

Any  sources as to whether 2 pieces of man fell on erev yom tov as well
as erev  shabbat?

See Tosafos Beitzah 2b, 'vehaya,' 2 opinions from diff. midrashim ,and see  
Nefesh Chayah from R. Reuven Margolios, Orach Chaim, 529,  3.

**************Gas prices getting you down? Search AOL Autos for 
fuel-efficient used cars.      (http://autos.aol.com/used?ncid=aolaut00050000000007)
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Message: 6
From: "Yaacov Shulman" <yacovdavid@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 7 Jul 2008 20:55:19 +0300
Re: [Avodah] Cohen Gadol, Pubescent Girl & Rav Kook


I appreciate the many comments made regarding the cohen gadol and the
pubescent girl.

I was thinking, tangentially but not irrelevantly, about some differences
between what one might call a traditional or patriarchal society and today's
western society, which Robert Bly has more-or-less famously called a
"sibling" society, in terms of what are considered acceptable or
unacceptable marriages and sexual relationships.

Regarding sexual activity between young adolescents, in modern society that
is generally not seen as problematical.  But if the two fourteen year olds
who are involved in such activity wanted to get married, that would be seen
as taboo, and if their parents were urging them to do so, they might get
arrested, or their children might be taken from them.

Of course, this is the exact opposite of a Torah approach as it appears in
the Gemara.  Perhaps this is because modern society has no problem with
sexual activity between equals but frowns on a relationship that it would
assume is being imposed on the couple.

Also: modern society has no problem with homosexual relationships but
polygamy is a great taboo.  Again, this may be because the first is seen as
being among equals, whereas polygamy implies that the man is in charge and
his wives are subordinate to him.

However, this doesn't touch on the heart of my question regarding the cohen
gadol and pubescent girl.  In brief, such an activity is illegal in modern
western societies, and, if I am not mistaken, is known as "statutory rape."

On the one hand, I am open to hearing about a society of a vastly different
structure than ours, in which marriage has a very different meaning than
ours has--i.e., in which the husband is a father-figure mentor as much as,
or more than, a friend and lover.

On the other hand ... Many years ago I had a conversation with someone who,
it turned out, was a sexual predator (on boys). I mentioned that I had been
listening to a radio talk show on which people told of how pedophiles had
traumatized them. This pedophile replied, "You only hear of the people who
complain. You don't hear from the people who benefited from such

This is not what I want to sound like--and to me, this is what that quote in
the name of R. Dovid Pelcovitz sounds like (i.e., that in other societies
children engage in a variety of sexual behavior, including bizarre
aberrations, and it doesn't harm them).

The cohen gadol is the emblem of the Jewish people in a sense. How, I ask
conceptually, can he be obligated to have marital relations with a 12 year
old girl (assuming he is widowed)? How is it that we do not see a discussion
that touches upon the context of darkei noam?

Micha Berger responded pithily,

Because there is no other way to accomodate the chiyuv deOraisa as
> understood.

My guess is that unless we live in a very different society after the
moshiach comes that this halachah will be worked around and not implemented
as it stands. For instance, a widowed cohen gadol might be obligated to step
down (just as a yavam generally is obligated to do chalitzah and not
yibum--the exact opposite of the original ideal and mandate).

I had originally thought of this answer but didn't like it, because it
seemed so inelegant as a solution. But the fact is that many halachos are
inelegant but working solutions to challenging circumstances. This seems to
be the mechanism whereby we maintain the halachic and spiritual-kabbalistic
integrity of the Torah while we adapt it to changing circumstances,
including societal change (not necessarily improvement, just change).
Yaacov David Shulman
Translator; Editor; Ghostwriter
Specializing in Torah and literary texts
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Message: 7
From: "Joshua Meisner" <jmeisner@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 7 Jul 2008 14:20:56 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Your brother's a Mumar; here's the solution!

On Mon, Jul 7, 2008 at 1:34 PM, Moshe Y. Gluck <mgluck@gmail.com> wrote:
> Are any women in Tanach described as loving their husbands?

Michal bas Shaul, although technically it was before she married him (Sh"A
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Message: 8
From: "Moshe Y. Gluck" <mgluck@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 7 Jul 2008 14:21:01 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Did Tziporah say Lashon Hara?

R' YG:
> Well, the Halachah there is that while a woman may object to her husband
> taking a job that would result in the diminution of her Onah, there's
> an explicit exception for a Tayal becoming a Talmid Hacham, so one
> could argue that a would be prophet has a similar dispensation.  On the
> other hand, see Pis'hei Teshuvah (75:2 - 3).

And see also Maharitz Chiyus on Berachos 27b.


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Message: 9
From: David Riceman <driceman@att.net>
Date: Mon, 07 Jul 2008 14:34:06 -0400
Re: [Avodah] Halachic Texts: More Background

Richard Wolpoe wrote:
> But I am persisting on  insisting that he made them optional because 
> the Talmud was STILL new enough to go back to it. After the Rishonim 
> were over, that was no longer the case.
Rav Ashi died around 425.  That leaves almost 800 years before the 
Rambam, and there were fewer than 400 years between the Rambam and the 
Shulhan Aruch.  We know that the Rambam was willing to ignore the 
interpolations of the Rabbanan Savorai (see Rabbi Benedict's book 
"HaRambam l'lo stiyah min haTalmud" pp. 163-167).

I think you're confused because so many of pre-Maimonidean commentaries 
are either lost or available only in fragmentary form.

David Riceman

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Message: 10
From: Zev Sero <zev@sero.name>
Date: Mon, 07 Jul 2008 16:15:13 -0400
Re: [Avodah] T'uM

Micha Berger wrote:

> Or in this case, since doing business with an LLC means consciously
> taking on that risk, I as an LLC owner have no duty, not even to another
> ben Yisrael, to minimize or cushion that risk.

At whose expense?  I have no right to do so at the expense of my
existing creditors. (If they are not BY, perhaps I do have the *right*
to cheat them by giving the BY a secret advantage, running the risk
of getting caught, and perhaps this would be a wonderful thing to do,
and if I get caught perhaps I can consider the trouble I get in to be
suffering for a mitzvah; but I don't see how I can ever be *expected*
to do so.)

Or do you mean that Avi was right to keep quiet about his problems,
but should now have a moral obligation to make M&B good out of his
own pocket, despite his having taken explicit steps precisely to
protect himself from exactly this risk?

> Such an attitude would basically eliminate the reach of QYTD (Qedoshim
> tihyu, ve'asisa haYashar vehaTov, vehalakhta bidrakhav) style mitzvos
> from Choshein Mishpat.

Would it be QYTD for M&B to accept this money, if Avi were to offer it?
Why is it more right for the money to be in their pocket than in his?

> In contrast to Rav's pesaq that Rava bar R' Huna had to not only return
> the porters' cloaks and pay them even though they were to blame for the
> breakage of the barrels they were to carry. RbRH got no hana'ah from
> the job and still was expected to pay! Nu, his lifnim mishuras hadin
> is going to be on a different madreiga than mine, but still, to say I
> have no duties beyond the terms of the agreement (explicit or implied)
> is beyond my ken.

I confess that I have never understood that story, but even there,
would the result have been the same if RbrH had anticipated this
possibility, and had made an explicit tnai with the porters that they
would be responsible for breakages, and that they wouldn't be paid
unless they delivered the barrels whole?  Was there nothing at all
he could have done to shield himself from this loss?  How is that
just?  And what is the result of such an attitude?  That any sane
person will refrain from employing porters at all, unless absolutely
necessary!  It would surprise me if those particular porters ever
found another job, once this story became known.  I know I would never
employ them.

Zev Sero               Something has gone seriously awry with this Court's
zev@sero.name          interpretation of the Constitution.
                                                  - Clarence Thomas


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