by Joel Rich
Does the psak of bet din evidence the ratzon hashem or is it normative law to adjudicate in this world. Example – my friend and I agree that we will each purchase a mega millions ticket each week and if either of us win the big prize we will split it. I win – would bet din say it’s an asmachta so I get to keep it? If so, might I feel ethically bound to split it anyway or would that be wrong because HKBH wanted me to have the whole prize”? If I gave 1/2 would I still have to give maaser ksafim on the whole thing and my friend on 1/2?… (We never won 🙁 )
I recently heard a rabbi commenting on kosher in the US versus Europe. “We are so blessed in America…. companies run to us for hechsher… so we don’t buy anything without a hechsher “. I seem to remember the Rav saying that Jews have dealt with the challenge of adversity better than with the challenge of wealth. (e.g., let’s wait comfortably here for the Messiah)
- Rabbi Yitzchak Blau-How to Study Aggada (Part 4)title Later traditional authorities added additional levels of interpretation to aggada; so did later academic authorities
- Rabbi Michael Taubes-Parshas Re’eh The Halachic Status of Mitzvah Preparations (Hechsher Mitzvah) What is a status of a hechsher mitzvah and how close in the process must it be to the mitzvah to be considered a hechsher mitzvah? Is zrizin makdimin a form of hechsher mitzvah?
- הגר”א בתור אדמו”ר | הרב אליקים קרומביין | הגר”א ותלמידיו – שיעור רביעי Why did the gras’s students come up with the approach that one can’t disagree with the gra? Perhaps they changed course to battle the chassidim? What happened to the concept that each generation gets weaker? How was the gra allowed to contradict earlier authorities?
- ספרי מניין המצוות של הראשונים: מגמות חינוכיות | שיעור 3 | הרב אליקים קרומביין | בית מדרש חי Maimonides was the first to lay out his algorithm as to what’s included in the list of 613 mitzvot. He needed this as an organizational basis for the mishna tora.
- ספרי מניין המצוות של הראשונים: מגמות חינוכיות | שיעור 5 | הרב אליקים קרומביין | בית מדרש חי The Rambam’s educational goal in his count was to raise up the general publics knowledge of torah (consistent with his philosophy of connection to God through intellect/knowledge).
- מהפכת הנוסח | הרב אליקים קרומביין | הגר”א ותלמידיו – שיעור שישי How did the gra’s students deal with the challenge to his authority based on the concept that each generation gets weaker? Sometimes God sends somebody (eg Rabbi Yehuda Hanassi) for such a unique role.
- Rabbi Sholom Fishbaine,Rabbi Gideon Weitzman,Rabbi Doniel Neustadt-8/12/23 – Shiur 431 – Navigating the Halachic landscape of vacation Vacation issues including: keeping kosher on the road, (chalav yisrael, chalav overseas, pot yisrael, pot overseas)), family swimming, walking outside with your eyes open during the summer, praying at a grave (versus learning Torah as a use of that ime), and pregnant women going to a cemetery.
- Rabbi Ya’akov Trump-From the Shayla Archive: Birkas Hagomel on Skin Operations and Doing it for Others How serious of a medical procedure must have occurred to warrant a hagomel? When, and in front of whom, is it said? Do women and children say it?
- Rabbi Yitzchak Breitowitz-Various Halachos of Tzniut One must consider philosophy, law, and practice when considering tzniut issues. An important consideration is where is the sweet spot between encouraging tzniut and turning off participants.
- פרי מניין המצוות של הראשונים: מגמות חינוכיות | שיעור 6 | הרב אליקים קרומביין | בית מדרש חי The chinuch took a different educational approach to counting the mitzvot. He differentiated between mitzvot which are always, sometimes or never applicable in today’s times. He was focused educationally on the people’s learning Torah. Perhaps he hid his identity so as not to directly, personally, take on others.
- Rabbi Jonathan Ziring-Leaving the Battlefront or Homefront During War The prohibition of leaving Israel might be viewed as not to leave ever or not to abandon (i.e. it’s OK to leave for good reason.) There may be a parallel to the mitzva of who goes to war. How would this analysis apply to the home front?
- Rabbi Hershel Schachter-The Significance of the Mitzvah of Talmud Torah Students should cover more ground in learning and focus more on halachic results. Tora learning is about revealing elokut; don’t allow politics or ego to get in the way.
- Rabbi Zev Smith-Practical Halachos of Netilas Yadayim Detailed instructions for proper hand washing, including riviit, shifshush and hagba.
- נפש של מהפכן | הרב אליקים קרומביין | הגר”א ותלמידיו – שיעור שביעי Rabbi MM Shklov produced texts with the gra’s emendations as primary and the traditional text as notes so as to emphasize the primacy of the gra. In the end, the gra has been accepted as another possible text, but not necessarily the primary one
- Rabbi Ezra Cohen-To Sit or Not to Sit: The Great Kiddush Debate There are a number of practices concerning sitting versus standing for all or part of kiddush Friday night and Shabbos day. Each has sources. Probably the best thing to do is follow your family practice.
- Rabbi Ya’akov Trump-From the Shayla Archive: Giving Tzedaka from the Estate of a Patient with Dementia Advanced planning is the best policy, but there are rules in place for a trustee/administrator. Interesting question implied, did the court always have the responsibility for these individuals or was it only after the Jewish government (King) disappeared that it took on those responsibilities. If so, based on what legal concept?
- Rabbi Daniel Fridman-Mitzvat Kiddushin? An Introduction to Masechet Kiddushin Is kiddushin a mitzva or a hechsher mitzvah? It reflects an elevated status.
- Rabbi Shraga Kallus-Don’t Bananas Grow On Trees? There are a lot of complicated hilchot brachot situations and you can hear a number of them here. The best general rule is to follow the generally accepted practice.
- הגר”א כמבאר השולחן | הרב אליקים קרומביין | הגר”א ותלמידיו – שיעור שמיני The biur hagra focused on developing the sources for laws in the shulchan aruch(which was the primary text) The goal was to encourage learning from the sources to reach a legal conclusion.
- המסר הטמון בצורת הדפוס | הרב אליקים קרומביין | הגר”א ותלמידיו – שיעור תשיעי The Gra’s students decided to print the biur hagra in place of the taz around the shulchan aruch to make the point that the gra was the new primary interpreter. Popular sentiment did not accept this and the gra was eventually placed as another commentary, but not necessarily the primary one.
- חשיבות התדמית | הרב אליקים קרומביין | הגר”א ותלמידיו – שיעור עשירי Different students of the gra’s wrote introductions to the volumes of the biur hagra. His sons wrote one describing his superhuman role modeling and the need to follow him in halacha and hashkafa.
- האחדות נסדקת | הרב אליקים קרומביין | הגר”א ותלמידיו – שיעור אחד עשר R MM Shklov wanted to publish much of the gra’s works quickly but his efforts weren’t necessarily accepted. He felt that in Israel he could start a gra-like community without similar resistance.
- Rabbi Yitzchak Breitowitz-Rabbinical Authority & The 613 Mitzvot What’s the source of rabbinical authority? Where did the number 613 come from as the number of mitzvot and what does it signify? Don’t treat another person as your cheftza shel mitzvah.
- Rabbi Yosef Goldin-Parshat Shoftim- Kingship in Judaism Is monarchy God’s will from the get-go? Was israel‘s request for a king appropriately executed? if not, why not?
- ר’ חיים מוולוז’ין | הרב אליקים קרומביין | הגר”א ותלמידיו – שיעור שניים עשר R’ Chaim wrote an introduction to shnot eliyahu but after that he didn’t seem so involved in the gra’s publications. why?<
- Rabbi Shraga Kallus-The Grand Finale: Who Needs A Rov If There Is A FrumGPT (AI)? AI can’t replace the rebbi/talmid northe posek/shoel relationship.
- איגרת ייסוד ישיבת וולוז’ין | הרב אליקים קרומביין | הגר”א ותלמידיו – שיעור שלושה עשר Why did R Chaim say he wasn’t a true student of the gra when he opened his yeshiva? Perhaps to differentiate himself from other students or to reduce the possible opposition to the yeshiva? A summary of the main points of the series is also included.
- Rabbi Daniel Z. Feldman-Priorities in Tzedakah part 2 Do we focus on charity’s impact on the giver or the taker? Priorities will differ between an individual giver and a gabbai. There is no one algorithm for allocations, but there are priorities
- Rabbi Michael Taubes-Parshas Shoftim Can Chazal Declare a Mitzvah Action Invalid? Rabbinic (me – in times of smicha?) authority to countermand the torah’s commandments discussed.
- Rav Asher Weiss- מצוות מינוי שופטים Whether or not there’s a technical mitzvah to appoint judges today, it certainly is the will of God.
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