Responsa

Chalitzah Within Three Months

by R. Gidon Rothstein 18 Sivan: R. Ovadya Yosef on Chalitzah Within Three Months When Necessary [Click here for the audio version]. People do not always accommodate as we would hope. Shu”t Yabi’a Omer 8; Even HaEzer 28, which was written in late 1975, refers to a court decision R. Ovadya Yosef joined on 18 Sivan 5723 (1963). A rabbinical judge in Haifa was faced with a widow whose ...

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Novelty in Halachah

by R. Gidon Rothstein 11 Sivan: R. Hayyim David Halevy on Novelty in Halachah [Click here for the audio version.] During the week before I came to summarize Shu”t Aseh Lecha Rav 6;54 in writing, a rabbi contacted me about an article I wrote years ago, which he had only just come across. We exchanged ideas about some details of the topic, cordially, and ...

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Baby Delivered with Forceps

by R. Gidon Rothstein 26 Iyyar: R. Ovadya Yosef on Pidyon HaBen for a Baby Delivered with Forceps Doctors sometimes use forceps to deliver a baby without the more invasive caesarean, when the mother’s efforts alone are not working. Shu”t Yabi’a Omer 9; Yoreh De’ah 26, dated 26 Iyyar 5729 (1969) responds to R. Baruch Rakover, who wondered whether such a baby could count as a bechor, a ...

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The Primus Stove

by R. Gidon Rothstein 19 Iyyar: R. Ovadya Hedaya and R. Kook on the Primus Stove [Click for the audio] R. Ovadya Hedayah was a renowned Torah scholar in Jerusalem of the mid-20thcentury. Shu”t Yaskil Avdi 2; Kuntres Acharon Orach Chayyim 7, records his correspondence with a R. Chanina HaKohen of Djerba, about using a Primus stove on holidays (when cooking is allowed; briefly, the Primus has a ...

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Minchah After Sunset

by R. Gidon Rothstein 12 Iyyar: The Klausenberger Rebbe on Minchah After Sunset [Click here for the audio]. Hasidut, the movement that started with the Ba’al Shem Tov in the mid-1700s, adopted many practices that raised halachic eyebrows. That included a looser regard for zemanei tefillah, the readiness of Hasidim to pray at times that seemed too late, in the name of having proper kavvanah, proper intent and attention, ...

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Karaite Converts

by R. Gidon Rothstein (Rabbi Rothstein will be co-chairing a Yom Iyun on the Teachings of Rav Aharon Lichtenstein at Lincoln Square Synagogue, Sunday April 29, 9:30am-12:30pm. Keynote address by Rabbi Dr. Ari Berman. Speakers include Dr. Tovah Lichtenstein and Rav Mosheh Lichtenstein.) 5 Iyyar: R. Uzziel on Rejecting and Accepting Karaite Converts [Click for the audio version]. It’s not easy ...

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Yissachar/Zevulun Relationships

by R. Gidon Rothstein 28 Nisan: Tzitz Eliezer on Yissachar/Zevulun Relationships [Click for the audio version.] A repeat element of responsa we’ve studied has been that respondents reply to an author who had sent novellae of his own. The polite response was for the other Torah scholar to share some ideas of his own on the topic. Shu”t Tzitz Eliezer ...

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Lone Respondent for the Sixth of Pesach

by R. Gidon Rothstein 20 Nisan: Khalfon Moshe HaKohen, Lone Respondent for the Sixth of Pesach [Click for the audio version]. Much as I’ve tried to randomize this series, I cannot pretend to have succeeded totally. Shu”t Sho’el ve-Nish’al by R. Khalfon Moshe HaKohen of Djerba, has responsa for just about every day of the calendar, so I could fill almost an entire ...

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When Prohibitions Are Created

by R. Gidon Rothstein 14 Nisan: R. Shlomo Zalman Auerbach on When Prohibitions Are Created You’d think Erev Pesach would be a busy time, and the Bar-Ilan Responsa Project says you’re right. The only teshuva I found dated to the fourteenth of Nisan is Minchat Shlomo Tinyana 66, written in 5751 (1991) by an eighty-year-old R. Shlomo Zalman Auerbach (RSZA). More surprising, it’s not on a Pesach ...

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