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13
votes
3answers
1k views

Does a Jewish grandmother (mother's side) really get one accepted as a Jew?

My grandmother (mother's side) is 100% Jewish and even living in Israel. As far as I know, that makes, me a Jew, too. But it feels a little bit strange to say that I am Jewish just because my ...
10
votes
3answers
208 views

Accepting parents' minhagim

Since the Conservative movement tends to take most of its minhagim from the German tradition due to its German roots, most Conservative Jews in America tend to practice the German customs (such as ...
2
votes
1answer
35 views

Tracing your Jewish roots [closed]

How do you find out about family Jewish history if you only have a Jewish grandfathers name and place of birth but no date of birth?
1
vote
1answer
77 views

Can a non-Kashrus observant Jew cook for a Kashrus-observant Jew?

Can a Jew who understands the laws of Kashrut but is not personally observant cook for a Kosher-observant Jew? For example, can a Jewish but non-observant parent cook for his Orthodox child? Presume ...
7
votes
1answer
64 views

Saying loshon hara to a spouse or close relative

Are there any relationships within which loshon hara is permitted? I guess I mean loshon hara that is said for a purpose--but perhaps not purposes which would meet the strict halachic criteria for ...
8
votes
1answer
337 views

Can a convert mourn for their Jewish parents?

Consider someone who was born to a Jewish father and non-Jewish mother who then converted to Judaism with his mother. It seems pashut from the Shulchan Aruch that one who converts is considered a ...
18
votes
1answer
389 views

Is a convert obliged to honor his parents?

Is a convert obliged to honor his parents? I understand that a convert loses all halakhic relationship to his parents upon being "reborn." Therefore, does the mitzvah of kibud av va'eim still apply?
3
votes
1answer
66 views

Eating in a non-kosher household [duplicate]

I am a converted Jew (mother is not Jewish, father is) who has recently began keeping Kosher. My mother is an excellent cook, and I greatly enjoyed eating what she made growing up. I still would like ...
5
votes
1answer
70 views

Are two children from different mothers but the same gentile father considered sibilings?

Two children that have the same father but different mothers are forbidden to have relations on grounds of incest. If their father is a gentile (and they have different Jewish mothers), it is not ...
5
votes
0answers
73 views

Is the mourning for a late relative dependent on the state of their relationship before death?

Are the halochos (laws) about observing mourning rituals for a relative (e.g., shiva, shloshim, etc.), affected in any way by the state of the relationship between the mourner and deceased before his ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

How to explain to friends/family that one will not attend an intermarriage

Suppose a friend or family member becomes engaged to a non-Jew. For the sake of this question, also assume that a trusted rabbi has been consulted and he has ruled (after considering any relevant ...
5
votes
2answers
780 views

At what age does negiah start applying for non-immediate family?

Wikipedia's article "Negiah" begins: The term negiah (Hebrew: נגיעה‎), literally "touch," is the concept in Halakha that forbids or restricts physical contact with a member of the opposite sex ...
3
votes
1answer
24 views

Why does Rashi offer completely different explanation of אחות נביות and אחות נחשון?

In Bereishit 28:9, Rashi uses the words "אחות נביות" ("the sister of Nevayot") to calculate how old Yishmael, Eisav, and Yaakov were at the time, and a bunch of other dates. However, in Shemot 6:23, ...
3
votes
2answers
380 views

Why am I told specifically not to uncover my father's nakedness?

I was flipping through Yevamos and saw that it said that the Torah does not explicitly state that one is prohibited from having relations with his daughter. I checked out the relevant passage in the ...
22
votes
2answers
2k views
6
votes
1answer
245 views

Who was the mother of Avraham's daughter?

According to one opinion in the Gemarah (Bava Basra 16b, also 141a), when it says Avraham was blessed with everything (Bereishit 24:1) it means that he had a daughter. Who was her mother?
1
vote
1answer
103 views

Lot's Daughters

Why did Lot's daughters have relations with their father?
-3
votes
1answer
86 views

Jewish source for “blood and money don't mix”?

There is a teaching (example 1, example 2) which states that "blood and money don't mix" (i.e. that family or friends should not do business together). Is there a Jewish source for this teaching?
9
votes
3answers
1k views

How to keep kosher in a non-observant household

Many Baalei Teshuvah (returnees to Judaism) confront various conflicts regarding their interactions with non-observant family and friends. A big one, which has not been discussed here (AFAIK), is ...
2
votes
1answer
95 views

Is it appropriate to sing Aishet Chayel for a childless woman?

I have seen a tradition that has husbands using Proverbs 31 ("Aishet Chayel") to bless their wives, with children rising up and going to the mother and kissing her. This text even has reference to ...
4
votes
1answer
167 views

What was Rav's relationship to R' Hiyyah?

In Mo'ed Katan (Bab. 20a) the Gemara relates a story about how Rav learned of the death of his parents from a conversation with R' Hiyyah. The Gemara tells us their relationship, and it's pretty ...
0
votes
1answer
56 views

Is a kohen's grandson a kohen?

My father was a kohen. Is my son, his grandson, a kohen? There are no other grandchildren in our family.
3
votes
1answer
208 views

Which kind of relations are considered incestuous in Judaism?

Specifically what kind of relationships are defined as incestuous in Judaism? I am guessing that it is forbidden to marry one's parents/children or siblings but what about other relations like first ...
10
votes
1answer
267 views

BT emailing non-observant family on Friday afternoon

A given person is Shabbat-observant; his/her immediate and extended family is not. May this individual write an email to his/her family (who live in Israel) when it is before Shabbat (where s/he ...
25
votes
4answers
5k views

Are children adopted by Jews Jewish?

I was adopted around the time I was three months old by my parents who are both Jewish. I do not know what religion my biological mother was, in fact I have very little detail about her at all. I was ...
1
vote
1answer
141 views

Giving a child the same name as a living distant relative

The Ashkenazi custom is not to give one's child a name shared by another living close relative. How close is too close? Can you give a child a name possessed by his/her (living) cousin? Second cousin? ...
4
votes
2answers
242 views

Converts, kibbud av v'eim, and non-Jewish holidays

A convert is required to honor his parents. This does not apply when fulfilling their requests violates halacha. I suspect that many parents of converts, who are not knowledgable in halacha and ...
3
votes
1answer
175 views

How was Dovid a descendant of Miriam?

It says in Sota 11b that the houses which were given to Yocheved and Miriam are interpreted as kingship, and the gemarah says that Dovid comes from Miriam. I'd like to know how that is possible given ...
2
votes
1answer
59 views

Why wasn't Boaz nicer to Naomi and Rus?

When Naomi and Rus return to Beis Lechem they are living in abject poverty. Rus goes and collects in Boaz's field. When Boaz finds out, instead of inviting these women to live in his home, or ...
1
vote
0answers
45 views

Who was Naomi's mother?

I would like to know the genealogy of Naomi the mother in law of Rus. Specifically, who was her mother?
5
votes
2answers
219 views

Does a ger (convert) say Yizkor?

A convert's biological parents are not their parents in a halachic sense. In some senses the converting beis din is "responsible" for the convert in the way of parents. In name, at least, the ger's ...
4
votes
4answers
337 views

Family Event at non-kosher resturant

One of my family members is having a family event at a non-kosher restaurant. I want to be there because it is a very important occasion and I don't want to insult my family. However, I know that in ...
3
votes
3answers
148 views

mi shebeirach for yourself when calling a relative up for an aliyah

I have been looking at the halachot for a son who is the gabbai and who calls his father up for an aliyah here and I know that there was a question about it, but my question is about after the aliyah. ...
0
votes
2answers
144 views

Is someone Jewish if descended from a long period of non-observant Jewish ancestry? [duplicate]

If someone has verifiably non-observant or non-Jewish ancestry(their mother and her mother etc for several generations were practicing Christians) but a DNA test shows matrilineal jewish DNA, are they ...
5
votes
2answers
187 views

When did R' 'Akiva see his children?

R' 'Akiva famously spent 12 years away from his wife learning Torah, returning home just in time to to overhear her tell someone she'd be happy if he spent another 12 years away learning Torah; at ...
5
votes
2answers
246 views

The stoning of Achan's family

Deuteronomy 24:16 says “The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers; every man shall be put to death for his own sin." Why then ...
5
votes
1answer
360 views

Are children whose mother converted after bearing them Jewish?

If a Jewish man and non-Jewish wife have a child, and the mother completes her Orthodox conversion to Judaism after the child is born, must the child also convert to be considered Jewish, if they were ...
9
votes
2answers
455 views

Mordecai: Esther's uncle?

The m'gila says clearly that Ester was "bas dodo", which seems to mean she was the daughter of Mord'chay's uncle, i.e., his first cousin. The targum renders this as "b'ras achvoy". Does that mean "his ...
4
votes
2answers
189 views

Is a person obligated to purchase life insurance?

I have, unfortunately, heard about quite a few stories of fathers/husbands who were in kolel full time and then suddenly passed away leaving the family at best with very little savings and at worst ...
15
votes
5answers
676 views

Prayer for Illness - Why use the mothers name?

Why when someone is sick do we say his mothers name not his father's?
7
votes
2answers
234 views

Why is Haman called an Agagite and not an Amalekite?

In Megillas Esther 3:1 Haman is called the Agagite which I always assumed meant he was a descendant of Agag the king of the Amalekite in 1 Shmuel 15:8. His lineage is confirmed in Megillah 13a as ...
4
votes
2answers
117 views

Kaddish yatom: what if a parent really *is* wicked?

I understand that a soul may be judged for a full 12 months after death but that we (generally) only say kaddish yatom for a parent for 11 months because the longest period is for the worst sinners ...
4
votes
2answers
365 views

Does death in immediate family require a delay in child's wedding?

I need some misconceptions straightened out about Jewish mourning. I've heard some say the death of someone in the immediate family of a betrothed must delay the wedding for anywhere between 30 days ...
3
votes
2answers
125 views

Speaking to a deceased person

Is it permissible when visiting the grave of a deceased family member to "speak" to them as if they are there. To tell them how much they miss them, they love them. In general to express feelings, ...
12
votes
5answers
1k views

Leniencies for someone keeping Kosher in a non-Kosher home

My family is not frum, but they do not eat non-kosher meat at home, although they do eat other not-certified-kosher products, including cheese. They don't mix meat and milk, but they do wash meat and ...
9
votes
2answers
152 views

Do the parents of a convert merit in the afterlife for their child's decision?

When my child was little, she wanted to know whether my parents, who are not Jewish, would go to Heaven. I explained to her that the righteous of all nations have a place in the world to come. But ...
3
votes
1answer
83 views

Naming a baby after a living non-relative

As an Ashkenazi Jew, can I name my child after someone who is alive if they are not a relative or are you not supposed to name a child after the living, regardless of your relationship with them or ...
6
votes
1answer
160 views

Why did Samson's parents not see the incident with the lion?

It says in sefer Shoftim (14,5-6) "And Shimshon and his father and mother went down to Timnas, and they came until the vineyards of Timnas, and behold, a young lion roared towards him. And there ...
3
votes
2answers
291 views

Is it a popular notion that a Jew should “have at least three children…”?

I have heard it said, "Every Jew must have at least three children (though more is preferable). Two to replace the parents when they die, and at least one more to make up for those lost in the ...
14
votes
10answers
495 views

Yaakov Marrying Two Sisters

According to those that say the Avos kept the Torah beforehand (here), how was Yaakov allowed to marry two sisters? (Yes, I'm aware that there are many answers)