by Joel Rich
Is the debate between LWO (for lack of a better term) and Orthodoxy which is not LWO concerning how to deal with mishkav zachor couples more rooted in traditional sources or in western liberalisms focus on the care/harm axis vs. the tradition and sanctity axes.
So as long as we’re talking about those axes and how much of our hosts society’s priorities have we taken on, might I ask the same question concerning “how much is enough?” or defining needs vs. wants as individuals and as communities? I think we may have more of a priorities “crisis” than a lack of resources crisis.
- Rabbi Nosson Rich-Mishna Berura Yomi: Hilchos Pesach 463-1 and 464-1
Various food concoctions with flour—what’s the deal on Pesach?
- Rabbi Yosef Bronstein-Tension or Harmony in Avodas Hashem: The Approaches of Rav Soloveitchik and the Lubavitcher Rebbe
Very nice presentation of the approaches of R’YBS (dialectic) and Lubavitcher Rebbi (holistic) to the multiple priorities that HKB”H places on us. (Me – 1. It’s much easier to say only one thing really counts (e.g., Talmud Torah), I just wish I believed it, 2. I’m not sure the two approaches are really that different—certainly R’YBS saw that all the priorities are subsets of the ratzon hashem and certainly the Lubavitcher understood that mindfulness can’t mean not taking other priorities into account (and reevaluating them from time to time).
- Rabbi Shay Schachter-Changing From Nusach Ashkenaz to Nusach Sefard
Nice insight from R’YBS on why someone who skips minyan is considered a bad neighbor (analogy – symphony missing an instrument). General advice – don’t stick out; don’t change minhagim.
- Rabbi Shimshon Nadel-Chumra in Jewish Law & Life
Money quote—it used to be Rabbis struggled to find solutions, now they struggle to find problems. It’s a delicate balance between going the extra mile and yuhara (egotism).
- Rabbi Yehoshua Grunstein-Which Way should I Face?
Which way (and why) to turn for lcha dodi (west or doors)? A number of positions examined (pun intended).
- Rabbi Avraham Gordimer-Halachos of Cheese and Milk – Pre-Shavuos Shiur
What supervision is required (and when) for akum and chalav yisrael cheese? Can the manufacturer simply be Jewish, or must a Jew watch the process or must he be involved in the manufacture? Then some discussion on defining hard cheese for purposes of waiting between milk and meat followed by thoughts on eating dairy on Shavuot.
- Rabbi Assaf Bednarsh-Hilchot Aveilut 16 (סי׳ שצא:ב–שצג:ג)
In depth mourning rules including: attendance at smachot (a function of the type of gathering, the relationship, and the activity [talk or food or dance]), remarriage during mourning, changing one’s seats during the mourning period and leaving the house of mourning to attend minyan.
- Chazaq Event-Community Overdose Prevention Education
Community meeting to discuss addiction in the orthodox community.
- Rabbi Yoni Levin-Davening on the Roadl: Standing on a Plane and Davening While Driving
If one is travelling and can’t stop, how and when can/should one dispense with physical prayer requirements? (e.g., standing)
- Rabbi Yisroel Reisman-Parashat Va’eira
The punishment for a sin is that we become sinners; we create our own world (me – intrinsic vs. extrinsic rewards)
- Rabbi Evan Hoffman-The Attitude of Rav Moshe Feinstein towards the Non-Orthodox
This Shiur reviews R’Moshe’s positions relating to non-orthodox Jews. Issues include marriages (and divorces) which were officiated at by other than orthodox clergy, teaching in non-orthodox Talmud Torah’s, renting space to non-orthodox institutions and having weddings at non-orthodox institutions.
- Rabbi Aryeh Lebowitz-The Aron Kodesh Part 2
Can an aron kodesh be repurposed for other holy uses? Can you put anything other than sifrei torah in an aron kodesh? What’s the deal with aravot on top of the aron? Can you have more than one aron in a room?
- Rabbi Ari Cutler-Mitzvah of Talmud Torah and Women
Review of all the usual sources concerning women’s learning (forbidden, permissible, and/or required) plus opinions on practical applications today.
- Rabbi Jonathan Ziring-Helping Clients Make Better Decisions (or Why Richard Thaler Won the Nobel Prize)
Examples of application of behavioral economics in Chazal and practical applications today (be kovea itim!)
- Rabbi Assaf Bednarsh-Hilchot Aveilut 17 (סי׳ שצד:א–שצט:א)
Mourning topics including: how much to mourn/feel one’s own mortality, delayed mourning starts rules, how sure one must be that death occurred, what elements of mourning are Torah vs. Rabbinic, and the interaction of regalim (holy days) with mourning.
- Rabbi Mordechai Torczyner-Celebrating 70, Topic 5b: The Aliyah of Ethiopian Jewry
A brief history of the state of Israel’s view of Ethiopian Jewry.
- Rabbi Aryeh Lebowitz-Ten Minute Halacha – Paroches of an Aron Kodesh
Is the parochet to remind us of the mikdash (where its purpose is tzniut) or beautification of the aron? (and why we might care).
- Rabbi Moshe Sokoloff-What Can One Read On Shabbos- Part 2
Conclusion of shiur rationalizing reading newspapers and books on Shabbat (why it’s not an issue of shtarei hedyotot [or concern of coming to that point]). Maybe it’s because of enjoyment or new information you might need.
- Rabbi Daniel Stein-Heating Liquids on Shabbos
Heating liquids on Shabbat differs from cooking solids, perhaps because cooking means making food edible, for liquids it’s just reheating. This Shiur explores heating (and reheating) liquids—is there a bishul after bishul? On what level? A number of specific applications discussed.
- Rabbi Ezra Schwartz-Life in The Heights X: Non – Observant Roommates and Kashruth
How do you handle eating at an apartment where one of the tenants does not have a chezkat kashrut? It’s not easy, perhaps the frum roommate can act as a mashgiach (Yotzeih Vnichnas).
- Rabbi Hershel Schachter-Berachos #115 54a – Birchot Hodaah, Morah Mikdash, Et Laasot LHashem, She’asa Li Ness Bmakom Hazeh
Topics covered include: morah mikdash (awe of the Temple), kavod beit knesset (honor of the synagogue), eit laasot (emergency measures), writing B”H and making a bracha where a miracle took place.
- Rabbi Aryeh Lebowitz-From The Rabbi’s Desk – Am I Jewish?, Plastic Wrap
What to do in the case of a ger katan(minor who converts) who said at his bar mitzvah that he accepted the mitzvot but really didn’t mean it? (It’s OK in the end.)
What to do when a distributor suspects his supplier is shorting the eventual customer? (unclear here where the leidat hasafeik (source of doubt) was).
- Rabbi Reuven Brand-A Holocaust Halachic Dilemma
How did the Rabbis deal with triage when asked about giving over lists of people or specific individuals to the Nazis?
- Rabbi Michael Taubes-Parshas Beha’alosecha Waiting Between Meat and Dairy When in Doubt About the Time
This Shiur reviews the halachic sources for waiting between meat and milk as well as practical applications.
- Rabbi Yehoshua Hartman,with Rabbi Nochum Greenwald,Rabbi Yitzchok Feldheim ,Rabbi Shulem Greenstein-5/26/18 The Great 250 Year Machlokes about Torah Lishma
How much do Misnagedim (e.g., Nefesh Hachayim) and Chassidim (e.g., Besht) disagree? Do we seek to peel back our reality or just deal with halachic reality?
- Mrs. Michal Horowitz-Awe & Reverence for Tefilla and Beis Knesses… Do We Have It?
Prayer is about a continual relationship with HKB”H. We need to be sincere in our prayer (public and private).
- Rabbi Mordechai Torczyner-Celebrating 70, Topic 6: Fallout of the Disengagement
This presentation begins with a history of the “disengagement” and then reflects on the impact on the religious Zionist community.
- Rabbi Yonah Gross-The Need For Semicha Today – Shulchan Aruch Shiur – Laws of Rabbinic Authority #5 – YD242:14
Is smicha today a quality control function (granted to an individual in all halachic areas, or only in specific ones?), or simply permission to give psak in proximity to one’s Rebbi?
- Rabbi Mordechai Torczyner-Muktzeh: Newspapers, Part 2
While newspapers delivered on Shabbat may not have muktzeh or nolad or tchum issues, it’s hard to get around the amira l’akum issue (to the deliverer).
- Rabbi Ari Kahn-הנון ההפוך בהלכה
Lessons from the inverted Nun’s concerning the kashrut of scribal additions to the sefer torah.
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