by Joel Rich
Question: Why do we blow shofar in the middle of Kadish Shalem rather than before or after (me â€“ maybe itâ€™s to emphasize the interconnectedness of tfila and teruah?)
Why is it a mitzvah to speak lashon hara in the sukkah? Teishvu Kâ€™ein Taduru (Hat tip â€“ Râ€™H Schachter)
Mishna in Bikkurim discusses standing for those who are bringing bikkurim. Is this an archetype for all those who are doing mitzvot or a unique and limited (e.g. here a tzibbur does the mitzvah) case.
Standing for Chatan (and Kallah?) based on this (me â€“ is marriage a mitzvah or a hecksher mitzvah?) or Chatan domeh lâ€™melechâ€¦. Some possible explanations, none of which truly fit the data IMHO. (But I did not say it was chukat hagoyim, nor did I say that about the wedding ring (for females), white wedding dresses or maypole dances).
OU Q&A â€“ Râ€™HS in an outstanding summary of Pat Yisrael and bishul akum issues. Particular focus on details including when commercial (Pat Palter) is acceptable (and when really not). Technical analysis of prohibitions and practical implications.
Some interesting insights on intermarriage, the fact that the Yerushalmi never states the concept of Adam Chashuv Shani and Râ€™Mosheâ€™s approach to when a gzeirah may be assumed not to apply to new circumstances (e.g. perhaps production of mass quantities for consumption â€“ any conehead fans out there?)
Analysis of what, if any, intent is required to doing mitzvot. Is â€œstamâ€ (not specific) intention enough? Can you have intention not to fulfill (and does it workJ)? What about conditional intention? Lchatchila or bdieved?
Various understandings analyzed and explained.
Why was idol worship so popular? People want easy, shallow answers or they want to do things they know they shouldnâ€™t or they practice Sheilaism (he didnâ€™t use this term â€“ based on â€œSheilaâ€ deciding whatâ€™s in and whatâ€™s out for herself).
Some thoughts on â€œeasyâ€ externalities and intermediaries even within orthodoxy!
List of Rosh Hashana simanim (positive omens) with reasons (sometimes multiple) for each. Implications for blessings and Yhi Ratzonâ€™s as well.
Or Sameach â€“ when torah uses singular, itâ€™s (often) referring to community (tzibbur). Implications of this, and concept of Tzibbur in general, for educational facilities, charity, chesed, torah reading and other requirements of a community.
Q&A on education issues: 1) Rebbi/student relationship â€“ dialectic (my word) between drawing close and keeping respectful distance; 2) His preference for single sex schools taking into account other factors; 3) High schools should focus more on commitment/philosophy â€“ too many kids come to Israel just looking to â€œput in their timeâ€ (me â€“ view Eretz Yisrael Yeshivot as a â€œfinishing schoolâ€ before they go back to their â€œreal livesâ€).
Great closing remarks on not pontificating.
Describing a new approach to his future Q&Aâ€™s (more text based). Then a few Q&A: 1) how do actions in this world impact the next (e.g. Yizkor); 2) asking mechilla; 3) changing standards of justice.
Discussion of Râ€™YBS approach on the two pesukim (Yom Truah, Zichron Truah) to the maaseh (act of the mitzvah) and the kiyum (accomplishment of the mitzvah). Also discussion of the tie of the shofar blasts to the brachot of mussaf, as well as the importance of simcha (joy) on Rosh Hashana. Focus on the repentance of the tzibbur (community).
Find a mitzvah that speaks to you and specialize in it. This requires work, self awareness, honesty, independence and perseverance.
Interesting analysis of the personalities of the progenitors of the shvatim (tribes) and how this was shown in the text for them and their descendants (focus on leadership of Reuvain, Yehuda and Yosef). Literary analysis anyone?
Accepting HKBâ€H as King means to surrender intellectually and emotionally to keep his command.
Msilat Yesharim on what we need to do â€“ love and fear HKBâ€H and go in his path â€“ in those men and women are equal but have separate roles.
When can Travelers do without a sukkah? Issues discussed include psek bmitzvah, yishuv eretz Yisrael, simcha. Lesson of combining the physical and the mental.
Shvil hazahav (golden mean) was in midot (ethical characteristics?) but in avodat hashem h e was â€œextremeâ€ in that t rue avodat hashem requires a preoccupation (with doing the ratzon hashem) â€“ [me – in the words of Râ€™YBS â€“ must have a latent awareness of the will of HKBâ€H at all times] Interesting-not a lot quoted from the Moreh (not that I understand it)
A biography of Râ€™Aron Soloveitchik â€“ his history and lessons including:
* his physical struggles
* his approachability (and thus influence)
* approach to State of Israel (& politics)
* link to the Mesorah
* sensitivity to all human beings.
Great clip of Râ€™YBSâ€™s â€œsymphony of generationsâ€™ (all coming into his shiur room)