Posts

Garbage Disposal on Shabbat

by R. Daniel Mann Question: My neighborhood’s garbage is collected on Shabbat. Isn’t it a problem having a non-Jew do melacha for me on Shabbat? What would the basis for leniency be, if there is any? Answer: We will start with your assumption – that melacha is involved. The workers carry 4 amot in a public domain and into a ...

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Audio Roundup 2017:1

by Joel Rich Consider the following assertion: HKB”H sets the world in motion based on specific “rules of nature.” He allows those rules of nature to interact with our free will choices. In certain situations he chooses to intervene in a manner that cannot be proven or predicted in order to produce a specific result. Each of us is ultimately ...

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Avraham Finding Hashem and Spreading the Word

by R. Gidon Rothstein Aggada Becomes Halachah: Avraham Finding Hashem and Spreading the Word As I mentioned last time, this series examines places where Rambam lets Aggadah or Midrash—meaning, sections of Talmudic literature not obviously meant as prescriptive or focused on halachah—nonetheless shape his presentation of Torah law. Because I am not nearly the expert in Rambam I would wish, ...

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Translating God

by R. Gil Student A long tradition exists of criticizing translators. The nuance of one language is often difficult to discern much less to transfer to a different tongue. Commentary, conventional wisdom has it, is inherent in translation. Judaism has a quasi-official translation of the Pentateuch, and it isn’t Artscroll. It is Targum Onkelos, the ancient Aramaic translation attributed to ...

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Continuing Realities

by R. Gidon Rothstein RH Tevet: R. Yitzchak Elchanan Spektor on Continuing Realities The first way to read Ein Yitzchak 1;Orach Chayyim 1, from Rosh Chodesh Tevet of 5639 (1878) is as a responsum by R. Yitzchak Elchanan Spektor about how to make sure a Torah scroll is valid. A closer look shows it’s much more about thehalachic presumption known ...

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Chazan Before a Yahrtzeit

by R. Daniel Mann Question: How important is it for someone to be chazan on the Shabbat before a yahrtzeit? Is it is just for parents, or also grandparents/in laws? Some people in my [the rabbi] shul feel that people use it as an excuse to “grab the amud.” Answer: Although many shuls have this issue, the best solution differs ...

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Answering A Priest’s Blessing

It is not uncommon for a Christian neighbor or friend to offer a blessing to a Jew or to anyone else. Often, these blessings colorfully invoke biblical themes in meaningful ways. Freestyle blessings are part of Christian culture. How should a Jew respond to these blessings? Obviously, a blessing offered in the spirit of friendship should be received in the ...

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Audio Roundup

by Joel Rich Could someone please find a plaintive yom kippur piyut and set it to Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah? I’d appreciate it. ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ From R’ Aviner (me interesting source-I’d go with a clear and logical mind –R’YBS) Q: Should one seek a Rabbi’s advice in financial matters? A: No. He does not understand this area more ...

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