Relations with non-Jews, and laws regarding them.

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9
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3answers
252 views

Seven Mitzvot of Benei Noach without Na'aseh veNishma

Why are Benei Noach obligated in their Seven Mitzvot if they never said Na'aseh veNishma?
7
votes
4answers
2k views

Is Halal Meat Kosher?

Muslims slaughter a Cow by saying "Bismillah, Allahu Akbar" meaning : "In the name of Allah , Allah is Great"" and follow the Zabiha (shechita) procedure to make it Halal. Some salient point of the ...
6
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2answers
169 views

Shakespeare in Classic Jewish Sources

Does anyone know of any references to Shakespeare, translations of his works, or anything related to Shakespeare in classic Rabbinic sources?
5
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3answers
147 views

Rabbinic prohibitions among Noachide laws

Are there Rabbinic prohibitions on non-Jews in the context of the 7 Noachide laws? e.g., would they have gezeirot like yichud or negia in order to prevent ariyot?
3
votes
1answer
346 views

In a non-Jewish youth hostel, is it problematic to stay in a mixed-gender dorm instead of a male-only one?

I'm male. Say I stay in a non-Jewish youth hostel dorm room which is mixed-gender instead of male-only. Might I encounter yichud problems? Might I encounter any other halachic problems? What's your ...
22
votes
5answers
701 views

How to respond to “but he does”

I mentioned to my coworker that I can't eat Domino's pizza, not even without meat, as it's not kosher. He pointed out in response that a fellow coworker of ours, whom I'll call Josh, and who is ...
13
votes
3answers
658 views

Was Judaism ever a proselytizing religion?

It is often asserted that up until the time of Constantine or so, Judaism was an actively proselytizing religion. This can be contrasted with the common practice today of rejecting potential converts ...
13
votes
6answers
592 views

Being a light to the nations - what does it mean?

I'm working on this as my project for a yeshiva program, and I'd like some input What does the concept actually mean? It's only mentioned briefly in most of our scripture and commentary. Are there ...
10
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3answers
518 views

Non-Jew's marriage obligation

Does a non-Jew have an obligation to get married like the Jew does?
9
votes
2answers
192 views

Lifnei 'Iver and your maybe-Jewish co-worker

I work in an office in which someone working down the hall is disabled. She has a Jewish sounding last name and talks to me about her family's practices in regard to being members of a Reform temple ...
9
votes
4answers
291 views

December greeting responses

How do you respond when greeted, during the Winter "holiday season" by a non-Jewish acquaintance with each of the following? Happy Chanuka (in proximity to Chanuka) Happy Chanuka (not in proximity ...
8
votes
1answer
326 views

Is abortion of a gentile child of a Jewish father permissible?

If a Jewish man were to father a child with a gentile would they be allowed to consider an abortion or would that be disallowed in the Halachic literature ?
8
votes
3answers
343 views

Best practices for praying in public with talit and tefilin

I just learned that a flight out of New York was diverted because a flight attendant saw a passenger putting on tefilin and freaked out, thinking that he was strapping on bombs. So, do you have any ...
7
votes
2answers
321 views

May a Jew Trick or Treat?

What would the halachic issues be (if any) regarding a Jew who wants to trick-or-treat on October 31st?
7
votes
3answers
154 views

Yeshivat Sheim v'Eiver

Assuming that our patriarchs Abraham Isaac and Jacob spent time learning in the House of Study of Sheim v'Eiver, the descendents of Noach, what were they learning? The seven commandments of the ...
7
votes
2answers
392 views

Why Do Converts Change Their Names?

Rabbi Avigdor Miller said that it used to be that gerim (converts) and baalei teshuvah (repentants) who had been given non-Jewish names did not change their names when they became part of the Jewish ...
6
votes
1answer
153 views

Honorific for a non-Jew

My question is somewhat simple: is there an honorific for particularly righteous, deceased non-Jews? Related: is זכרונו לברכה ever used for non-Jews? I don't recall ever having seen this. EDIT: I ...
6
votes
2answers
260 views

May one say kaddish for a non-Jew?

I have read that Jews recited kaddish on behalf of Abraham Lincoln after he was assassinated. What is the halachic basis for this and has kaddish ever been said en-masse on behalf of other non-Jews?
5
votes
4answers
523 views

are homosexual relations forbidden by God? Why?

To my understanding, Bible says that God does not like homosexual relations. But why? Why did God punish and destroy inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah? They were not Jewish and were not given the laws ...
4
votes
4answers
123 views

English books for better understanding of Jewish thought?

I consider myself a "Christian" (as in a "follower of 'Christ'"), and I am interested in learning more about Judaism, so that I can better understand the Jewish roots of Christianity. I've gotten ...
2
votes
2answers
880 views

Attending a relative's non-Jewish wedding in a non-Jewish place of worship?

Could somebody attend his non-Jewish relatives' wedding ceremony if they are held, let's say, in a church or a Buddhist temple?
1
vote
0answers
86 views

Sharing Mi Yodeya questions on Facebook

Underneath questions on Stack Exchange sites there is a "share" link which allows one to share the question one is viewing on Facebook, Google+, or Twitter. Is it permitted to use this feature on Mi ...
0
votes
2answers
65 views
+50

Ben Noah and his obligations regarding vows

A hypothetical case: Ben Noah in the process of giyur. Stood before the Beis Din and was asked question 'Will you follow the mitzvot as fully as a goy can up until the end of the process of giyur and ...
14
votes
3answers
1k views

What should I be aware of when using the term “Jew”?

As a gentile who finds himself writing about Judaism in the ancient world, I've found myself reluctant to use the word "Jew". I tend to use phrases like "Jewish people" and "Hebrew" when it makes ...
12
votes
3answers
224 views

Praying in “multifaith spaces” in airports and other institutions

In airports and hospitals and such, you can often find "multifaith spaces". Is it permitted to pray in them? These "interfaith prayer chapels" are not churches: they're completely neutral rooms and ...
12
votes
2answers
242 views

How should non-Jews observe Rosh HaShanah?

The second mishnah in Rosh HaShanah says that "all the people of the world" are judged on Rosh HaShanah. How should non-Jews observe the Day of Judgment?
10
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3answers
304 views

Referring to Non-Jews

What's the most diplomatic and politically correct way to refer to non-Jews. Both in conversation, and in terms of this site?
10
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3answers
265 views

Publicly Teaching Halacha

I was looking at this site and was a little bit surprised at this statement: It is therefore forbidden for Jews to teach non-Jews Halachah Is this true? (See a related question on the Meta).
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3answers
5k views

“How long is a Jewish funeral?”

A non-Jewish co-worker who was invited to a Jewish funeral asked me how long they typically are. I told her that, thank God, I hadn't been to many, but my understanding is that they probably vary a ...
9
votes
2answers
377 views

Gentile living with a Jewish flatmate

I've been talking with someone about possibly moving in to a room in her house later in the year. Her kitchen is kosher and her house is shomer Shabbos, but since I'm used to spending Shabbos in ...
9
votes
1answer
99 views

Can non-Jews utilize the princple of bittul berov?

The concept of bittul berov means that in certain cases, if some non-kosher food gets mixed up in as much kosher food of the same type such that nobody knows which piece is the non-kosher part, the ...
9
votes
2answers
332 views

May a man wear a wedding band?

Is there any halachic reason that a man may not wear a wedding band (ring)? Possible reasons to forbid it would include beged isha and chukas hagoyim.
9
votes
2answers
576 views

Can a Mezuzah be given to a respectable and trustworthy non-Jew?

Would it be permissible to give a Mezuzah to a non-Jew if he is honorable and can reasonably be trusted to treat it with great care such as a dignitary or a collector of cultural artifacts?
8
votes
2answers
171 views

Were the eirev rav Jewish?

Were the eirev rav Jewish? If they were in fact Jewish why are they described by the term eirev rav instead of just referring to them as we would any other Jew? If they were not Jewish why were they ...
8
votes
2answers
320 views

How are we to understand Malchi-Tzedek, non-Jewish priest of God?

Malchi-Tzedek is a gentile priest who worships God. I initially read this as just saying God is not exclusive (it says somewhere in Nevi'im that God also has covenants with other peoples), but today ...
7
votes
1answer
142 views

What is the point of the prophecy of Nachum?

The prophecy of the navi Nachum seems to be entirely related to the eventual destruction of the city of Ninveh. Why does the fate of Ninveh need to be recorded for the Jews for all time? If, for ...
7
votes
5answers
499 views

malacha from child

is one allowed to ask a child to do a malacha of shabbos? does your answer also apply to a non-Jew?
6
votes
1answer
892 views

I want to be a Jew, but I'm born as a Muslim

I'm from Algeria, but I'm now living in France. I was born as a Muslim, but since I was 13, I realized that Islam wasn't for me. Since two years, I'm now looking for a new religion, and from what I've ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

First trip to the synagogue! Tips and advice please!

I am preparing for my first trip to a synagogue after the High Holy Days. My first visit will be to a Modern Orthodox Synagogue. I have interacted with the Rabbi by email and we will be meeting ...
6
votes
1answer
395 views

Is wine left in a bottle poured by non-Jews really permitted*?

I could be wrong, but my reading of the Nosei Keilim (Y"D 125:1) indicates to me that if a non-Jew pours a bottle of wine, the remaining wine is totally fine, or at least ok if there is some loss ...
5
votes
0answers
50 views

Welcoming non-Jewish guests

Is there a mitzvah of welcoming guests who are non-Jews? I know Avraham welcomed non-Jews into his home, but that could be different for several reasons: There was no formal mitzvah and he was just ...
5
votes
4answers
219 views

Is there an aversion to having Gentiles in the synagoge and why?

I've noticed that in some communities being a non-Jew in the synagogue seems to be discouraged. In response to a request to visit I've heard responses as direct as "we don't have a conversion program ...
5
votes
2answers
249 views

Not interlacing fingers in prayer

I have heard from an unauthoritative source that one should not interlace his fingers while praying, because, l'havdil, Christians do. Is there any authoritative source for the claim that it's ...
5
votes
1answer
95 views

the Laws of Noah--how are the nations to know them

If the laws of Noah are the laws for the nations and they are handed down by Jewish oral tradition, how are the nations to know them?
5
votes
1answer
524 views

Can a non-Jew recite the Shema?

Can a non-Jew recite the Shema and other Jewish prayers? Is there any one which is off limits to non-Jews? Thanks.
5
votes
2answers
284 views

Can a Ben-Noach practice another religion?

Could a Ben-Noach actively practice a religion other than Judaism as long as it isn't considered avoda zara? Suppose, for example, he was born Muslim. Could he continue to actively follow Islam and ...
5
votes
1answer
200 views

Imagine a non-Jewish hostel has a male and a female dorm. Does yichud allow me to sleep in the male dorm?

I'm male. Imagine I arrive at a youth hostel where I'm the only Jew. There's a male-only dorm room; down the hallway, there's also a female-only dorm room. Assume that all the doors are unlocked. ...
5
votes
3answers
252 views

Of Rats and Hemorrhoids

The Plishtim or Philistines captured the Ahron Kodesh from the Jews (Shmuel I Chapter 5), then they returned it with a gift of golden rats and hemorrhoids as that was what they were punished with for ...
5
votes
2answers
143 views

Are these Latin/Greek translations of Hebrew terms useful?

If you use the following Latin or Greek translations of Hebrew terms in conversation with secular people, do they tend to know what you're talking about? If so, in what contexts - a university ...
5
votes
3answers
398 views

Why did Hashem offer the Torah to all the other nations?

Why did Hashem bother to ask all the other nations if they wanted to get the Torah when He knew they'd say no? (See Midrash Sifri, Deuteronomy 343) (I already know Hashem is beyond time)