Audio Roundup CXLV

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

by Joel Rich

From a recent WSJ article:This latest case in Kansas takes matters a step further, requiring that the state make explicit accommodations for Witnesses to follow their beliefs with regard to health care. “I love life,” Ms. Stinemetz told the Kansas City Star when she filed the suit. “But when it comes to obeying our creator, I am going to obey my creator before I do anything else, because he gave us our life. You’ve got to follow his laws.” And maybe change some of man’s laws while you’re at it.

I couldn’t help but think of the recent Traditon article on multiculturalism – I’m all for religious freedom but when do you have the right to observe your religion on my dime?


Beyond the Dikdukei Soferim – A Powerful Free Tool for DIY Talmudic Text Research – a guest post by Leor Jacobi

A powerful resource for Talmudic research is now available freely on-line. The latest version of Eidei Nusah. This site contains the text of almost all manuscripts of the Talmud Bavli. Previous versions were available on CD-ROM. Many geniza fragments have been added to this version. Some actual images of Talmud and Mishna manuscripts are also available.
All I can say is Wow, I wish this were more mainstream in the beit medrash


For my main question this week, see the first shiur review below:

  • Rabbi Hershel Schachter – Techeiles Revisited – Can a Lost Mitvah be Rediscovered

    If we only knew what the 1st R’YBS really held about the need for a mesorah (tradition) – was it that “once was lost (but now I’m) [can be] found; or is it “if the (glove)[fish] does not fit, you cannot (convict)[make it into tcheilet].
    R’YSE thought the latter, so the source couldn’t be the fish (which was well known throughout the ages) but could be something else (murex).
    Proofs of new tcheilet plus R’HS position must wear from at least doubt and better to wear no tzitzit rather than plain white.
    Then R’Abraham Twerski on overwhelming evidence, that R’YSE didn’t take a position on this issue due to financial impact and then some mussar on seeing tzitzit vs. seeing other things (e.g. internet porn). [me – I don’t get the R’YSE thing – wouldn’t the community be better off not being “baalei nefesh” and drinking chalav ha companies and using the savings to fulfill a torah mitzvah of tzitzit??]

  • Rabbi Hershel Schachter -Parsha Shiur – Emor 5771

    Discusses mitzvah of chinuch – duraita or drabanan, Dad vs. Mom, before and after Bar Mitzvah.
    What about direct abetting (e.g. feed non-kosher food)? Is this prohibition related to chinuch? What about for one who will never have mitzvot (e.g. shoteh)?
    V’Kidashto – related to first aliyah – is it duraita or drabanan? If no other Kohain, do you give the first aliyah to a Kohain Katan?
    Zonah assurah l’kohain – in current culture need to ask about some folks past history (dai l’chakimah b’rmiza).
    Does the Kohain Gadol mourn or is he exempt due to his need for simcha (joy) as being lfnei hashem? Is being left handed a blemish? This and lots more!

  • Rabbi Hershel Schachter -Advanced Technology and Halacha

    R’HS takes on the deterministic (we’re all pre-programmed) scientists. We believe in a soul reflective of HKB”H and free will. Some interesting topics, not fully fleshed out, including the halachic standing/implications of thoughts, drug therapy trade offs (not the kind that makes you think you’re more creative) and programmers responsibility for future actions carried out based on their programs.

  • Rabbi Avi Billet -Praying For the Ill

    What is the definition of a choleh (person who is ill)? When is it appropriate to say a “misheberach” for someone? How long do you say it for? When is it considered in vain? Why not just pray? What should you pray for in “end of life” (or possible ones) situation? Why say tehillim? Which ones?
    General thrust (or maybe I’m projecting) – Life is not about searching for the right “segulah”, it’s about our relationship with HKB”H.

  • Rav Chanoch Waxman-Parshat Pinchas – Of Zealotry and Idolatry

    Medrash that Moshe was not originally ok with Pinchas’s killing of Zimri – was it just because of due process issues (l’havdil would the Navy Seals have been legally justified in killing an unarmed, unresisting Bin Ladin?) or was it more?
    An interesting analysis based on the parallels between Eliyahu post har carmel and moshe. After the message to Eliyahu of “Kol dmamah dakah” (the small still voice) – it’s not in the zealousness, it’s in the soft small voice, Eliyahu continues to cling to the zealous approach and therefore can’t continue his prophecy. Moshe, after the nikrat hatzur (HKB”H passes by him) understands 13 middot (e.g. mercy) – not zealousness. Thus Moshe was “anti-zealous”.
    So why did HKB”H approve of Pinchas zealousness?
    Moshe himself was zealous earlier in his life when needed, now it was Pinchas turn.

  • Rabbi Yonason Sacks-Pre Health Vaad- Pikuach Nefesh

    Worthwhile for 1st lines – although I think it goes far beyond medical careers – picking a career entails thought plus preparation since often in the heat of battle, there’s no time to ask halachic questions.
    Then a detailed review of the underpinning of halachic issues involved in pikuach nefesh (life threatening) including dchuyah, hutrah, shvut d’shvut, gzeirah, drabannan and mlacha.

  • Rabbi Dr. Jeffrey Woolf -‘God Inspired the Kings to Expel the Jews’: The Galut Mentality in Halakhah and Hashkafah

    Some in pre-inquisition Spain felt Spain was their homeland. Wrong! Keep this in mind today and come home while you can. (ouch!)

  • Mrs. Rebecca Skaist -Friendship: A Torah Perspective

    Not the TV show! Importance of friends in your avodat hashem and how to make friends. (There’s more to it than “Hello, my name is Joel. Would you be my friend?”)

  • Rabbi Yosef Zvi Rimon -She’ailot veTshuvot regarding the war in Gaza and Rabbinic leadership

    Questions from the Gaza war including:
    1) can you take your tfillin with you on Shabbat
    2) prayer in a tank with no disposal facilities
    3) teaching with powerpoint on Shabbat
    Some inspirational stories. Message on approach – A Rav must be a patient incrementalist.

  • Rabbi Moshe Taragin -Kiddush Hashem and Making a stand in the name of God

    Chananya et al, Rabbi Akiva – as role models for self sacrifice – it’s not about reward, it’s about the ratzon Hashem.

  • Rabbi Dani Rapp – Birthdays in Halacha

    Celebrating birthdays – yes, no or maybe (milestones)
    Me – “Nothing is good nor bad – only thinking makes it so/hakol holchin acher hapeh” (non-googled/BICD cites anyone?).
    Me – English or hebrew birthday – perhaps depends on how you define mazal?

  • Rabbi Azarya Berzon -Introduction to Mesechta Makkot

    A very introductory shiur to mesechet Maakot – basic definitions.

  • Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik-The Rebellion of Korach

    R’Steve Brizel’s favorite (IIRC) R’YBS shiur. Korach’s rebellion was different in that in the prior ones Moshe faced were generated by the physical needs of the masses. Korach’s was premeditated based on prior grievances with Aaron’s (and Moshe) appointment, Mraglim gave him an excuse.
    His claim was Moshe was a usurper – since the whole community was holy. This is true, there is a communal holiness but there’s also an individual one based on many things including personal commitment.
    If you look at the arguments Korach raised you’ll see it was a “common sense” rebellion. Torah, however, has its own scientific/conceptual rules (as does any discipline) which must be followed.
    IMHO this point is often exaggerated as simple logic doesn’t apply to halacha, I think this interpretation is incorrect if it leads to “halacha is magic” thinking (i.e. only those who know the secret handshake can understand it).

  • Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik – K i Tisa

    An analysis of “Vayichal” as a lesson in the tshuva process.

  • Rabbi Mordechai I. Willig -Yom Ha’atzmaut

    R’Willig reviews miscellaneous issues concerning the return to Zion and how we relate to the state, primarily based on R’HS (and R’YBS).

  • Rabbi Aryeh Lebowitz -Ten Minute Halacha – The Israeli Flag – Magen Dovid

    How do we related to the flag of the state? R’YBS on the symbolism of the flag for the sacrifices made to establish the state.
    Then an attempt to explain the significance of the Magein David (all interesting, but are they true?).

  • Rabbi Steven Weil -Infusing Our Lives With Integrity

    Doing Tzedek/Mishpat (“the right thing”) is our calling card! Discussion of a number of bein adam l’chaveiro (intrapersonal) examples – gneivat data (deceptive practices), IP, Kashrut certification for dishonest business (oh, oh – isn’t that not an Orthodox issue, next we’ll hear tikkun olam is important:-)), pshara (compromise), bar metzra (neighbor’s right of 1st refusal)…
    Then explaining why “we are family” isn’t [negative] discrimination.

  • Rabbi Aryeh Lebowitz -Ten Minute Halacha – Saying Hallel on Yom Ha’atzma’ut

    Hallel on yom haatzmaut – no “safe” choice – depends on your read of history, miracles, Yom Tov, first stirrings of redemption and salvation (short and long term).
    While saying hallel or not is not necessarily reflective of one’s Zionism (me – but may have a strong r2), hakarat hatov (recognition of good) to HKB”H for the shivat tzion seems a minimum. [me – sometimes you just have to say “I was wrong”].

  • About Joel Rich

    Joel Rich is a frequent local lecturer on various Torah topics in West Orange, NJ and supports his Torah listening habits by working as a consulting actuary.

    12 comments

    1. “I’m all for religious freedom but” Yissurei ha galut al regel achat? מתאים לפרשת בחקותי

    2. Shalom Rosenfeld

      So is RHS now telling people to wear techeilet? Does he?

      ****************************************************************

      Hakol holech achar hapeh – (first time I’ve heard “no Googling or Bar-Ilaning”; though you said BICD, and now it’s available as a web service …); Gemara about dreams; is it in … Brachos?
      ********************************************************************

      “IMHO this point is often exaggerated as simple logic doesn’t apply to halacha, I think this interpretation is incorrect if it leads to “halacha is magic” thinking (i.e. only those who know the secret handshake can understand it). ”

      RH”S makes this point a lot too. “R’ Chaim Brisker said besides the 13 Methods by which the Torah is Expounded, there’s a 14th: basic logic.”

    3. R’SR,
      Yes he does wear tcheilet.
      KT

    4. Shalom Rosenfeld

      Huh, didn’t realize/notice that.

      How recently did he switch over? (I assume both talis katan and gadol?)

    5. R’SR,
      Don’t know but I believe it’s a while.
      KT

    6. Rav Schachter was one of the first. He actually ordered it before they began producing it

    7. RHS said recently that it is better not to wear a talit at all than to wear arba canfot without techeilet. As far as I know he is the only posek who has gone that far.

    8. ” I’m all for religious freedom but when do you have the right to observe your religion on my dime”

      a logical argument against allowing deductions for gifts to houses of worship-why should the government pay money to any house of worship-by allowing a tax deduction they effectively are paying through the tax expenditure. Mathematically the same as the government matching ones contribution with lets say a 1/4 match could be higher depending on tax bracket.

    9. R’ Mycroft,
      Ein hachi nami – or for any charitable contribution (secular as well)
      KT

    10. “R’ Mycroft,
      Ein hachi nami – or for any charitable contribution (secular as well)
      KT”
      Agreed

    11. “Rabbi Dr. Jeffrey Woolf -’God Inspired the Kings to Expel the Jews’: The Galut Mentality in Halakhah and Hashkafah
      Some in pre-inquisition Spain felt Spain was their homeland. Wrong! Keep this in mind today and come home while you can. (ouch!) ”

      Wasn’t the longest consecutive major Jewish presence in a country that in Iraq or Iran?

    12. “IMHO this point is often exaggerated as simple logic doesn’t apply to halacha,”
      Agreed
      “I think this interpretation is incorrect if it leads to “halacha is magic” thinking (i.e. only those who know the secret handshake can understand it). ”

      Agreed

    Leave a Reply

    Subscribe to our Weekly Newsletter


    The latest weekly digest is also available by clicking here.

    Subscribe to our Daily Newsletter

    Archives

    Categories

    %d bloggers like this: