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Volume 35: Number 13

Fri, 27 Jan 2017

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Message: 1
From: Professor L. Levine
Date: Fri, 27 Jan 2017 15:03:55 +0000
[Avodah] Going to a Hotel for Shabbos/Yomtov

The following is from


[I believe that one must be subscribed to this list to view it,  so I am reproducing the entire post. YL]

Going to a Hotel for Shabbos/Yomtov

The following is a summation of an article published a few weeks ago by
Chief Sephardi Rabbi of Tzfat Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu Shlita. For those
unfamiliar with the rav, in addition to being a Chief Rabbi, he is active
in kashrus in Israel and familiar with many aspects of kashrus. He is also
a member of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel Rabbinical Council. I urge those
who can navigate the Hebrew to do so.

[The Hebrew document is at  http://tinyurl.com/jcq3xwr]

Those who cannot, the English overview is in sufficient details to get the
message across ? going away for Shabbos entails far more than asking ?do
you use gush katif greens and what shechita meat and poultry are used?.

From Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu Shlita:

Being a guest in a hotel on Shabbos

I point out that while many aspects of this article are applicable in any hotel, some items are only germane if one is in a hotel in Israel.

Kashrus of the Hotel

Prior to making a reservation in a hotel in Israel or abroad, one must
check a number of important things. Hence, it is wise to phone the hotel
prior to booking and telling the person the conversation is being recorded
and if it is later learned that some of the information given is not
factually correct, he may file a lawsuit against the hotel.

To achieve the correct level of kashrus one must inquire if the utensils
are toiveled (ritual immersion in a mikve). While there are heterim for
this [using utensils in a hotel that were not toiveled], this represents a
hotel that is not diligent in kashrus observance, but rather a venue in
which kashrus is not of paramount importance for bottom line, to toivel all
the utensils is a chore that can be accomplished in a single day. A hotel
that is not serious about its religious guests will be less than serious
here too for it shows an unwillingness to make this effort in return for
the hefty profits it makes.

One must check if the cooking is bishul yisrael or that of a non-Jew. If
they are lenient regarding ?bishul akum?, then the overall kashrus is in
doubt. The presence of many non-Jews in the kitchen without a Jewish
presence results in many other kashrus problems as well.

One must ascertain if the greens are the special ?gush katif? [insect free]
type or do they make due with using regular vegetables that are washed and
inspected by a mashgiach. The savings to a hotel that does not buy regular
vegetables is zero as compared to the profit and the benefit to better
kashrus is immeasurable. A hotel that does not take the needs of its
religious clients seriously is not one that one should visit.

The culture of those who sin

Another issue that must be verified prior to one?s arrival is the level of
tznius (modesty) for some hotels are located on the shore and some have a
pool in the center, before the eyes of all, and this is unacceptable. Even
if the kashrus is ?mehadrin?, remaining in such a hotel is an aveira (sin).

There are also hotels that do not maintain a Shabbos atmosphere and may
host ?cultural events? on Shabbos, utilizing main areas of the hotel,
leaving guests with no escape. They play music and the desecration of
Shabbos atmosphere prevails.

To light a light for Shabbos

Shabbos candles must be lit in the room one eats or sleeps, but safety
regulations do not permit this. One must not violate the safety
regulations. Hotels will permit women to light candles at the entrance to a
dining room. One must be aware that according to the Shulchan Aruch (for
Sephardim), only the first woman lighting there may do so with a bracha.
(??? ???? ?) Other opinions permit otherwise (Rema/for Ashkenazim) and one
must remember, if in doubt, one may not recite a bracha.

The correct way to comply with the Shulchan Aruch would be to light two
battery-powered lights and make a bracha in one?s room and while we are not
accustomed to this, my father and teacher Maran HaGaon HaRav Mordechai
Eliyahu ZT?L ruled this way as is the ruling of the book Shmiras Shabbos
Kehilchasah (??? ?"?, ???? ? ?????? ?? ?').

I stress one must use a battery powered light for electricity is reliant on
electricity that is renewed with each millisecond and one may not rely on
this to make a bracha but the power from a battery does permit making a
bracha for this is comparable to a light derived from oil. Hence, anyone
and everyone must prepare fitting battery-operated flashlights that are
worthy for use to light Shabbos candles in a hotel. If the wife?s custom is
to light additional candles, even when not at home, then he must prepare
the correct number of flashlights for her. (LED lights are fine too, and
one does not have to have specifically a flashlight for the point is the
light and tranquility and not the flame). (???? ???? ??: ??"? ??????? ??)

Doors, sensors & warning devices

Another item that demands checking in advance is electric doors,
particularly outside of Israel. There are hotels around the world with
magnetic card locks to rooms without the option of a manual key bypass. In
many hotels, electricity and climate control will also turn off and on when
one leaves and enters a room. There are hotels with an electric main
entrance without a manual alternative. One may not spend Shabbos in such
hotels unless special arrangements have been made to accommodate Shabbos.

Most hotels in Israel offer a manual key bypass that is acceptable for
Shabbos. One must ascertain if one may receive a key instead of an
electronic lock before booking a Shabbos.

If you ordered a room in a hotel and forgot to ask, and find yourself
without a Shabbos key, one may use tape to keep the tongue of a lock inside
and close the door, permitting one to enter and leave without a magnetic
card. In this case, one must be certain to place all valuables in a safe in
the room.

In the Diaspora, one has to inquire regarding an eruv for most places
around the world do not have one and one cannot carry a room key. In such a
case, one must give the key in at the desk. One may carry a key inside the
hotel for halachically, a hotel is viewed as one large house.

Using a non-Jew to open one?s room

If one is stuck and it is Shabbos, there are those who permit using a
non-Jew by hinting to have him open the door for us but this is far from a
l?chatchila situation. One may not instruct a non-Jew to do forbidden work
for us on Shabbos, even something that is a Rabbinical prohibition and not
Biblical unless there is a matter of illness (??"? ???? ???? ??? ? ????
?"?). If a non-Jew enters on his own to clean for example, one may then
enter after him.

Using a non-Jew to open the main entrance

This heter may also be used regarding the main entrance of a hotel if the
door only opens when one activates a sensor, but only as explained by the
Minchas Yitzchak above ? that one is stuck and has no other options. One
MAY NOT rely on this heter if one decided to book for Shabbos knowing the

If a non-Jew does it for himself ? It is permitted

In order to truly understand the Minchas Yitzchak, one must familiarize
oneself with the regulations governing a non-Jew doing a forbidden act for
a Jews on Shabbos.

????, ??? ??:?:  ??????? ??????????? ??? ?????? ????????????? ???????? ??????????; ????? ?????????? ?????????? ??????.

?????? ????? ??????????? ???????????, ???????? ???????? ??????????; ?????
?????????? ?????????? ??????. ?????? ????? ??????? ?????? ???? ??????
???????? ??????????; ????? ?????????? ?????????? ??????. ?????? ?????
??????????? ???????????, ???????? ???????? ??????????; ????? ??????????
?????????? ??????. ?????? ????? ??????? ?????? ???? ?????? ????????
??????????; ????? ?????????? ?????????? ??????.

???????? ????????? ??????????? ??????????, ???????? ??????? ???????????, ???????? ????? ??????? ?????? ????, ????????? ???? ?????? ??????????? ?????????????.

[If on Shabbat] a gentile lights a candle a Jew may use its light; but if
[he lit it] on behalf of the Jew it is prohibited [to use it]. [If a
gentile] filled [a vessel with] water to give to his cattle to drink a Jew
may give his cattle to drink after him [from that vessel]; but if [the
gentile filled the water] on behalf of the Jew it is prohibited [to use
it]. [If] a gentile makes a ramp to descend [from a ship], a Jew may
descend [thereon] after him; but if [the gentile made it] on behalf of the
Jew it is prohibited [to use it].

It once happened that Rabban Gamliel and the Elders were arriving on a ship
and a gentile made a ramp to descend [from the ship] whereupon Rabban
Gamliel and the Elders descended using it.

Rabbi Eliyahu then quotes the Talmud, Shabbos 122a.

?"? ???? ????? ????? ????? ????? ????? ??? ????? ????? ???? ???? ??? ??????
????? ???? ????? ????? ??? ????? ????? ???? ??"? ???? ????? ??? ????? ????
???? ????? ?? ???? ??? ??? ????? ????? ??? ????? ?? ??? ????? ???? ??? ??
?? ??? ????? ???? ????? ?? ???? ????? ??? ????? ??? ?? ??"? ???? ????? ???
????? ???? ?? ??? ?????? ????? ??? ??? ???? ??? ????? ??? ??? ??? ?????
???? ????? ?? ???? ?? ???? ?????? ??? ??? ??? ?????? ????? ???? ?????? ????
??? ?? ???? ????? ????? ??? ?? ?? ??? ??? ?????? ?????? ???? ????? ????? ??
???? ?????? ???? ?? ??? ????? ???? ????? ?? ??? ?? ??? ????? ????? ????
????? ???? ??? ?? ????? ????? ????? ????? ?"? ?? ????? ?????? ?? ??? ?????
???? ?????? ????? ?? ??? ????? ???? ???? ?? ???? ???? ??? ??? ?? ?????

?? ???,? ????  ????? ????? ????? ????? ????? ??? ???? ???? ??? ???? ????
????? ???? ???????? ????? ????? ???? ???? ?????? ??? ??? ??? ??? ?????
?????? ??? ?????? ???????? ???? ????? ??? ????:

Elevator or the stairs

There was a case involving Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu ZT?L in which he was
staying in a hotel in the United States, on the 15th floor. A number of
important people were with him on Shabbos in the hotel. When he entered the
hotel his escorts headed towards the elevators. The rav asked ?Who will
push the button?? They explained there is a non-Jew operating it and he
will ask ?what floor please?.

Rav Eliyahu responded ?This is exactly what halacha prohibits!? He referred
to a non-Jew doing a prohibited act specifically for a Jew. (??"? ???) In
the case of the elevator, clearly, the non-Jew does this for us, the Jew,
even if he comes up to. The rabbi walked the 15 flights and this led to the
others following.

The case of the elevator is not comparable [to the case involving Shmuel in
the Talmud quoted above] since in this case, the non-Jew has nothing to do
on the 15th floor. If the non-Jew has reason to travel up to the 15th
floor, there are authorities who permit it. (????? ???"? ???? ??????) He
would permit accompanying the non-Jew for some buildings are high and not
everyone can walk and the other option is being compelled to remain in
one?s apartment the entire Shabbos but this is in case of ?great need?.

A non-Jew who goes up [on the elevator for himself]

The Shu?t Chelkat Yaakov (??"? ???? ????)(???? ???? ???? ??"?) disputes the
leniency given above by Rav Uziel, equating it with getting into a vehicle
on Shabbos that is driven by a non-Jew. Rabbi Eliyahu then quotes the Rema
who prohibits remaining on a train driven by a non-Jews on Shabbos (????
?"? ???? ?"?).

Shabbos elevators and escalators

Probing if one may use an elevator on Shabbos leads us to discuss
escalators as well. There are those who permit using them, explaining the
stairs open and close automatically without human intervention. Others
prohibit it because the escalator calculates the load and if there are
three motors and only a few people on it, only one motor may be operating.
The addition of others may result in additional motors beginning to work.
Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu would not use escalators, but he would also not
rule to prohibit it.

He feels one gets on an escalator without doing anything and one cannot
know if another motor will be activated, hence, if there is a matter of an
elderly or sick person, there is what to rely upon for leniency.

A non-Jew writing it down

Assuming the person standing at the entrance to the dining room on Shabbos
is a non-Jew, may we tell him a room number to permit him to check it off?
This is done to keep those who are not entitled out of the dining room. In
fact, this is a case of a non-Jew doing a prohibited action based on what
we say.

There are those who are lenient, explaining the non-Jew is not writing for
us but for the hotel. This is comparable to a non-Jew fixing a vehicle at a
set on price, not by the hour. If repairs are carried out on Shabbos we are
not responsible for he is doing this for himself. However, if he is paid by
the hours, we cannot permit it.

Rabbi Eliyahu gives additional explanations.

Activating the mechanisms by opening and closing the door

In an effort to save money, many hotels have installed devices that
activate and turn off heat, air conditioning, lights and more when one
enters and leaves one?s room. One must check to determine if this can be
shut off for Shabbos. One must check abroad, especially if one is joining a
tour geared for Israelis towards determining which hotel is suitable.

P?sik Reisha ? Rabbinical prohibitions

The automatic activation of a system is considered as if we directly did
the act, as is the case with opening a refrigerator door that results in
turning on a light. There are various opinions regarding a Rabbinical
violation in which we do not benefit from the resulting violation. This
applies to most systems and most poskim prohibit this unless it is a matter
of danger. If one sees a snake or scorpion he may kill them even if not
chasing them to prevent harm to others (??"? ??"?). The Mishna Brura
explains this is because they may harm others and this is a case the act is
not wanted, meaning we do not benefit from killing them but we kill them to
prevent harm to others.

A heter for P?sik Reisha to avoid a dangerous situation

It is permitted to pass venues with surveillance cameras and a pedestrian
does not intend to activate it by passing. Therefore, they permit to pass a
magnetic detector which inspects persons at public places in the event they
are carrying a gun or knife.

However, this heter does not apply to an electric hotel entrance and as per
the Mishna Brura and this also prohibits using automatic faucets and
urinals on Shabbos. This prohibition would apply to entering one?s room
when doing so activates different systems. If one is absolutely stuck
without any alternative, one should ask a non-Jew to enter the room before
him. This is because activating the air conditioning and lights by entering
is a ?P?sik Reisha? that results from his actions and permitted.

Using hot water on Shabbos

One must not use hot water in a hotel room on Shabbos and inform his family
as well. In most hotels the hot water boilers are working to accommodate
the non-Jews and therefore, using hot water will result in heating cold
water on Shabbos. ?

These are some of the issues one must address before one makes reservations in a hotel on Shabbos.

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Message: 2
From: Zev Sero
Date: Fri, 27 Jan 2017 10:10:30 -0500
Re: [Avodah] Mesorah?

On 27/01/17 00:48, Rich, Joel via Avodah wrote:
> In Shiurim L?zecher Aba Mori Z?L, R?YBS posits (see page 230) that in a
> difference of opinion concerning a Halacha Moshe Misinai, if one side
> has a kabbalah (tradition) and the other doesn?t, the decision is always
> in favor of the side with the tradition. [Me ? assumption being a
> tradition must be correct and not a transmission error?] Whey then would
> we not apply the same logic with a Gzeira Shava (unless you assume there
> was not one where there was a clear tradition of which cases were
> related with which words?)?

Perhaps it's like the kashrus of birds, i.e. perhaps there was a time 
when people were allowed to make their own gezeros shavos, so even if 
you received one from your rebbe, perhaps it derives not from Moshe but 
from someone who made it up himself, and who may have been wrong.

Zev Sero                May 2017, with its *nine* days of Chanukah,
z...@sero.name           be a brilliant year for us all

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Message: 3
From: Micha Berger
Date: Fri, 27 Jan 2017 10:48:17 -0500
[Avodah] Aliyah according to the Arukh haShulchan

I know the AhS isn't the final word in halakhah for most people, so just
take this as a data point.

In the newer editions of AhS, Hil' Nedarim, YD 288:128-133 discusses
hataras nedarim when it's a neder/shavu'ah to do a mitzvah, contrasting a
mitzvah chiyuvis, a mitzvah qiyumis. A shavu'ah not to do something sinful
(eg mesacheiq bequbiyos) which isn't actually assur cannot be annulled.
Nor can a neder/shevu'ah to fulfill a chiyuv, as the only motivation
would be to wheedle out of a chiyuv.

But one may be matir a vow to make aliyah.

According to se'if 132, the PT (s"q 28) quotes the Rashba that this
is because aliyah laaretz is a hekshsher mitzvah. But had made a neder
ladur baaretz, he could not anul it.

The AhS find this implausible -- after all the person making the oath
la'alos obviously is thinking about ladur, and nedarim are belashon benei
adam. (Acc. to the AhS by default, only if the neder/shavu'ah was made
using a turn of phrase one finds in Tanakhand not common speech is it
belashon miqra.)

He instead favors the Mordechai who explains the din based on the idea
that dirah ba'aretz is a mitzvah qiyumis, and therefore has the same
din as a pledge to tzedaqah.


Micha Berger                 Time flies...
mi...@aishdas.org                    ... but you're the pilot.
http://www.aishdas.org                       - R' Zelig Pliskin
Fax: (270) 514-1507

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Message: 4
From: Cantor Wolberg
Date: Fri, 27 Jan 2017 12:25:42 -0500
[Avodah] Tz'nius and Clothing

Prof Levine provided some great sources regarding 
tz?nius and clothing for women and men.
What struck me as fascinating is the etymology of 
the word BEGED, clothing. The same word can also
mean treacherous, faithless, etc. 
I think only one who understands tz?nius and clothing
can see the connection. If the BEGED one wears is 
inappropriate, then that person is acting in a faithless,
treacherous, disloyal manner.
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Message: 5
From: Micha Berger
Date: Fri, 27 Jan 2017 12:44:50 -0500
Re: [Avodah] Tz'nius and Clothing

On Fri, Jan 27, 2017 at 12:25:42PM -0500, Cantor Wolberg via Avodah wrote:
: What struck me as fascinating is the etymology of 
: the word BEGED, clothing. The same word can also
: mean treacherous, faithless, etc. 
: I think only one who understands tz'nius and clothing
: can see the connection. If the BEGED one wears is 
: inappropriate, then that person is acting in a faithless,
: treacherous, disloyal manner.

There are three terms in Tanakh for clothing -- kesus, beged and levush.
Although levush doesn't appear as a noun until Mordechai wears
Achashveirosh's clothing.

I thought of kesus in terms of tzeni'us, and beged in terms of uniform.
Eg kohanim get bigdei kehunah. Adam and Chava cover themselves up, but
Hashem makes them kusanos or -- which we know from kehunah is a form of

Achashveirosh wears levush, because the uniform doesn't help much. It's
just "drapery".

I used this notion to explain the two times Hashem commands tzitzis:
we put tzitzis (sprouts - growth) on the corners of our begadim, but
gedilim (ropes? something "bigger" than strings, cords, binding with
chulios, kerikhos and qeshrim) go on a kesus. Perhaps, using RYBS-speak,
we could say that a kesus is an article of retreat, and a beged is worn
to advance. (As I posted here in 2010.)



Micha Berger             Nearly all men can stand adversity,
mi...@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: 6
From: Micha Berger
Date: Fri, 27 Jan 2017 13:50:21 -0500
[Avodah] Minhag haMakom and the Aruch haShulchan

The AhS has some nice qunterusin buried in YD.

He has a mini Sheiv Shemaatesa buried in YD 110:104-end, although in
a couple of places you need to check back to earlier se'ifim. The
se'ifim even have a second numbering restarting with 1.

And yeish/ein bereirah can be found in a tangent off nedarim (swearing
off an item whose identity isn't defined yet): YD 226:22-end.

With an interesting machloqes rishonim about bereirah being about
kavanah/amirah being required but impossible, whether it's like
trying to buy a davar shelo ba le'olam, etc...

In YD 228, the AhS veers off a discussion of nedarim which were made
al da'as rabbim to distinguish them from communal taqanos. So you
get in 228:103 (or so, it's topic drift with no clear line) - 127 a
discussion of such taqanos.

Two data points that may be of interest to the chevrah:

Se'if 114: A community makes a gezeira larabim or a siyag laTorah,
and them some of the benei ha'ir go to live in another city with no
intent to go back -- mikol maqom chayavim linhog ha'issur gam besham,
de'aqarqafta degavrei munach ha'isur.

Se'if 221 cites SA s' 35 that a shevu'a can't bind those not born yet,
but issurim and qelalos can. Moshe's shevu'a is different because
it was HQBH's idea. And Yehoshua's issur of ever rebuilding Yerichos
is with the same kind of exception, or a qelalah.

It seems to me like the ground-work for carrying on minhagim of
the Old Country even after early 20th cent dislocations.


Micha Berger             Weeds are flowers too
mi...@aishdas.org        once you get to know them.
http://www.aishdas.org          - Eeyore ("Winnie-the-Pooh" by AA Milne)
Fax: (270) 514-1507

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Message: 7
From: Micha Berger
Date: Fri, 27 Jan 2017 14:24:47 -0500
[Avodah] Copyright Law and Aruch haShulchan

AhS YD 225:2 (still in Hilkhos Nedarim, not available in the classical
edition) says that he saw the PT ask on the Rambam's intro to Moreh
Nevuchim, how he can be mashbia beElokai Yisbarakh... Well, to quote
Fraedlander's version:

    I adjure any reader of my book, in the name of the Most High, not
    to add any explanation even to a single word: nor to explain to
    another any portion of it except such passages as have been fully
    treated of by previous theological authorities: he must not teach
    others anything that he has learnt from my work alone, and that has
    not been hitherto discussed by any of our authorities. ...

So the question raised os: How can the Rambam be mashbia others without
their saying "amein" or the like?

RYME adds that the intro to Seifer haMaor similarly has a line being
mashbia any publishers or copyists from copying the work without the

So the answer is that of course someone can make an issurim on his
own item.

VeTalmud Chakham le'olam Torasam shelahem hi, af acharei mosam.

Not like physical property, which you don't own after you die. "Upashut


Micha Berger             One doesn't learn mussar to be a tzaddik,
mi...@aishdas.org        but to become a tzaddik.
http://www.aishdas.org                         - Rav Yisrael Salanter
Fax: (270) 514-1507


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