Questions connected to laws that were instituted by the Rabbis (not Biblical).

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Explanation of Mishna in Shabbat

The Mishna in Shabbat (1: 7) states that: בֵּית שַׁמַּאי אוֹמְרִים, אֵין מוֹכְרִין לַנָּכְרִי וְאֵין טוֹעֲנִין עִמּוֹ וְאֵין מַגְבִּיהִין עָלָיו, אֶלָּא כְּדֵי שֶׁיַּגִּיעַ לְמָקוֹם קָרוֹב. וּבֵית ...
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3answers
230 views

Doesn't gezera affect the Torah?

I was reading a book about Judaism and I noticed that there is a concept called "Gezera" or "Takana", which means an amendment in Jewish law. According to this book, gezera can occur when the ...
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0answers
91 views

Understanding how halacha & mitzvot are derived

Since this isn't getting a lot of traction maybe I should approach the question differently. I know that mitzvot can be divided into two basic categories, d'rabbanan and d'oriata. Of the mitzvot ...
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1answer
70 views

Rabbinical violations that are punishable by death?

Are there any rabbinical violations that carry the punishment of kareit (or other death penalty)? I'm wondering because of this answer--which suggests that the prohibition on relations with a ...
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0answers
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Why did the Rabbis make a decree for Yovel?

Rambam (Hilchos Tefila 2:8) says that בד"א ביום צום של כל שנה ושנה אבל ביום צום של שנת היובל מתפלל תפלת המוספים תשע ברכות כמו שהתפלל במוסף ראש השנה והם אותן הברכות עצמן לא פחות ולא יותר ואין ...
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2answers
58 views

Seven Mitzvos D'Rabanan

I heard there are 620 letters in the Aseres Hadibros which corresponds to the 613 Mitzvos of the Torah and 7 Mitzvos D'Rabanan. What are the Seven Mitzvos D'Rabanan - שבע מצוות דרבנן? Is there a easy ...
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3answers
122 views

Torah Study Of Rabbinic Laws

Does one fulfill the Biblical precept to study Torah while studying Rabbinic precepts? R. Mordechai of Vilna writes that one does not. Are there disputants? Please answer with exact sources or ...
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5answers
2k views

Should a non-Orthodox Jew wear tzitzit or not?

It seems obvious to me that in general it’s better to keep more mitzvot rather than fewer, but wearing tzitzit seems like a special case. I’ve asked rabbis in my community about this, but I want to ...
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1answer
130 views

Precedent for Forbidding Conversion

The Syrian community has a Takkanah in place which bars conversion. In addition to forbidding conversion under their own auspices, they also "Never accept a convert or a child born of a convert", as ...
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1answer
84 views

Pikuach Nefesh and different levels of Halacha

Here's a theoretical: if someone has to save a life and has two equally easy options, both of which violate halacha, one d'oraita and one d'rabbanan. Should he choose the d'oraita or the d'rabbanan?
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1answer
69 views

Why don't we wear tefillin on Yom Tov sheni?

In Hilkhoth Tefillin 4:10, the Rambam states the basic and well-known halakhah that "...shabbathoth wi-yamim tovim enan zeman tefillin..." (Translation: "Shabbat and Yom Tov are not times for ...
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1answer
136 views

Why is Shmita only Rabbinic nowadays?

I was reading up on Heter Iska and it said that Shmita and Shmitat Kesafim are only Rabbinic today. Why do the Biblical laws no longer apply?
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1answer
68 views

Understanding the difference between shevus and gezeirah

I know that, in general, there is a difference in strictness between the two categories of protective measures, but am having difficulty in explaining the difference between the two.
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1answer
1k views

Are there jews not following the rabbinic laws?

Trying to learn about Judaism more I have been reading this StackExchange for the past few months. As a non-Jew using the correct terminology is a bit hard, so please do feel more than free to edit ...
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1answer
122 views

Translation of 'Takana'

What would a fitting colloquially accepted translation of the word takana be? Assuming we are dealing of course with a rabbinic decree and so as to convey the intent as apposed to 'gzeira', 'syag', ...
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1answer
291 views

Why don't Rabbinic fasts end by Ben Hashmashot?

There's a doubt in the Gemara when the new day starts, at sunset or at three stars (Ok, and there's Rabbi Yossi's opinion). When it comes to Shabbos (or any other biblical time), we have to be strict ...
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1answer
105 views

Why are we bound to rabbinic laws?

I know that one of the reasons given for our being limited by miderobonon laws is explained in Masechet Shevuot, 39a which says as follows (lifted from dafyomi.co.il) i. "Asher Yeshno Po ...
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0answers
36 views

why does one make a brachah on a rabbinicaly ordained mitzvah? [duplicate]

why does one make a brachah on a rabbinicaly ordained mitzvah in the same manner as other mitzvas? for example chanukah candles... "Blessed are You, Lord our G-d, King of the universe, who has ...
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1answer
53 views

Medicines v. Spices on Shabbos

Medicines are forbidden on shabbos for the non-critically ill because in the old days, they had to be ground with a pestle beforehand. Must not spices also be ground? How come spices are not also ...
2
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1answer
84 views

The levels in kashrut

If a piece of a biblically forbidden food (such as a piece of pork), falls into a bowl of meat. We all know the rule, it's batul bshishim. How about a piece of food which is only rabbinically ...
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1answer
103 views

What is Ezra's Immersion / טבילת עזרא

What is Ezra's Immersion / טבילת עזרא and: Why was it canceled? How was it canceled?
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0answers
81 views

Is a triple shvus allowed?

Is there a concept of shvus dishvus with an added shvus making it a rabbinic prohibition 3 times removed. For example if it's yom tov sheini, and the action is rabbinic such as Nolad (turning on a ...
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1answer
112 views

Rabbinical suppport for reducing noise at weddings

There is a verse in Devarim (Deut) - Don't recall exact location that says "Watch your lives very carefully". From here we learn that we must do what we can to preserve our health. So, I'm wondering ...
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2answers
56 views

Nazir: shaving on the start of the vow

I read that a nazir would shave his hair just prior to taking the vow because of a decree of the sages. Is it true? What is the source for this information?
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2answers
123 views

Why do we make blessings on mitzvot d'rabbanan at the second seder?

As far as I know mitzvot such as eating marror or saying hallel at the Pesach seder are only rabbinic (the marror was biblical previously but I am told that is no longer so). If this is the case and ...
2
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1answer
67 views

May one violate a derabonon to preform a Bris

May one violate a rabbinic prohibition (such as carrying a knife in a Karmilis on Shabbos) in order to perform a Bris Milah? (A Karmilis is a domain which a person can't carry stuff into or from a ...
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1answer
45 views

Halachic categorization of safek dioraisa…

Is the dictum of safek dioraisa l'chumrah (and its inverse safek d'rabanan l'kulah) a principle from the Torah, or a din d'rabanan? How does this change how we react in these sefeikah situations?
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2answers
161 views

What is the punishment for Patur Aval Issur?

If one does something on Shabbos, say, that is patur aval issur (like an act of destruction) what is the punishment? I know that Beis Din (court) does nothing, but are there any sources for what the ...
2
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1answer
171 views

Anti-libertarian-ism in Chazal

Most of the halachos of Choshen Mishpat have to do with one person's responsibilities viz-a-viz another person's rights. However, there is at least one halacha of which I am aware where Chazal told ...
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2answers
456 views

How was Tevilas Ezra effective in limiting conjugal relations?

Many go to mikve (perform ritual immersion) every morning. One reason for this is voluntary continuation of a cancelled decree, Tevilas Ezra, meant to limit conjugal relations by requiring immersion ...
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2answers
69 views

Biblical versus rabbinic transgressions

Does the distinction between biblical versus rabbinic transgressions have implications or consequences today? In the past, the punishment for them was different I believe.
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1answer
94 views

The Abolition of Vidui Ma'aser

Deuteronomy 26:12-15 details a confession that must be recited on the final yontef of Pesach, both on the fourth and on the seventh years of the agricultural cycle, at such a time as there is a temple ...
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0answers
76 views

Why make the Kohen burning the Para Aduma rabbinically impure?

The Gemara says that we make the Kohen burning the Para Aduma (the red heifer) impure and then dip him in the Mikva. The reason given is that there is an argument between the Rabbis and the Sadducees ...
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1answer
593 views

Was chicken originally considered pareve? If so, when and why was this changed?

I heard that chicken was originally considered pareve in the Bible, because it is a type of fowl (i.e. like fish it is pareve, as it is not 'meat'), and that only later was it changed to be meat ...
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2answers
154 views

Who Commanded Us, and For What?

Whenever a Jew performs an activity that is mandated by the Torah, s/he recites the blessing that acknowledges God, "אשר קדשנו במצוותיו" (who sanctified us with his commandments), and who commanded us ...
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0answers
249 views

To what extent is homosexuality forbidden among non-Jews?

All homosexual behavior is forbidden among Jews, but some actions are clearly Torah prohibitions (e.g. mishkav zachar), while some might be Rabbinic in nature (e.g. lesbian relations). Are all of ...
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1answer
326 views

Why does the “Dorff teshuva” of the Conservative movement say that homosexual relations are a *rabbinic* prohibition?

In a teshuva issued by the Conservative Movement entitled Rituals and Documents of Marriage and Divorce for Same-Sex Couples by Rabbis Elliot Dorff, Daniel Nevins and Avram Reisner, it is claimed in a ...
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1answer
107 views

Why is there no decree against bathing in Chamei Teverya?

Gemara Shabbos says that originally one was allowed to bathe on Shabbos in pre-heated bath-houses. However, (in short) due to the fact that the bath-house directors would violate Shabbos (by heating ...
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1answer
108 views

Are Kol Ishah and seeing a woman's exposed hair rabbinic prohibitions according to the Shulhan 'Aruch?

According to the Shulhan 'Aruch (Even Ha'Ezer 21:1), it is: ואסור לשמוע קול ערוה או לראות שערה. והמתכוין לאחד מאלו הדברים, מכין אותו מכת מרדות. ואלו הדברים אסורים גם בחייבי לאוין.‏ Forbidden ...
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0answers
71 views

Can “Three D'Rabbanans be 'motzei' ”Two D'Rabbanans"

We know that when there is a case of someone that is obligated to perform a mitzvah m'drabbanan (and in fact there are 2 d'rabbanans together) they can't be "motzei" someone in the mitzvah who only ...
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1answer
145 views

Davar charif cut with meat knife — why not ossur?

The SA in YD Siman 97 Sif 1 (the makor is a braisa in Pesachim Daf 30) says that one should not knead together a dough with milk, lest someone come to eat it together with meat. If one did knead them ...
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1answer
136 views

Sofek d'rabbanan by tevillah of an isha

Normally we say "sofek d'rabbanan l'kulo" and will be lenient in a case of a doubt that is only an issur d'rabbanan. I have heard that there are poskim who say this doesn't apply in the case when ...
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1answer
55 views

Proof from Mishneh that Hilchos Chol HaMoed is M'd'rabbanan

If one looks into the Tur and Beis Yosef at the beginning of Hilchos Chol HaMoed in Simana 630 you will find a big maklokes rishonim if malacha on Chol HaMoed is an issur d'oraisa, d'rabbanan, or ...
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0answers
106 views

Who should observe Isru Chag?

I have been trying to understand Isru Chag. While there is a source in tehillim for the words and the gemara derives a notion of extra celebration, there seems to be little about the scope of the day. ...
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2answers
191 views

How did Chazal know they were right about “who is a Jew”?

My question is predicated on the assumption that Jews were created by God as fundamentally different from non-Jews. (I am referring, for example, to the idea that Jews have a special type of soul. And ...
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2answers
72 views

“Lo Plog” in Shas

In a case of a gezera or any other issur that might not apply to a particular person (for whatever reason) we often still say it does because of a "lo plog". In order that we shouldn't make ...
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3answers
289 views

Arguments for Rabbinical Law

My friend does not practice Rabbinical Laws unless he fully agrees with the reasoning. He's totally fine with direct Torah Laws however. I'm running out of arguments to convince him. Any ideas?
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2answers
126 views

Skin of chicken like chicken meat itself?

In terms of dinei baser b'chalav and other nafka minas for if something is considered baser or not what does the status of the skin on top of chicken have (the skin that is cooked together and often ...
8
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1answer
160 views

Has anyone declared a time of oppression regarding the four Temple fasts?

The Sha'ar haTziyun (OC 550 sk 9) speculates if in his day (~1900 CE) there was enough oppression of the Jews to warrant declaring the fasts of 10 Tevet, 17 Tammuz and 3 Tishrei into full fledged ...
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2answers
633 views

Can a gentile break shabbos only on a Rabbinic level?

A non-Jew is forbidden from observing Shabbos. When someone is in the process of converting, we advise them to keep the entire Shabbos besides for doing one forbidden activity. A common practice is to ...