Relations with non-Jews, and laws regarding them.

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228 views

Only my grandfather was Jewish. Can I pray at home in my grandfather's tallit?

I'm a "patrilinear" Jew, only my grandfather was really jewish for halakhà. I'm proud of my jewish heritage and I follow many jewish traditions (like Kasheruth, Pesach, Yom Kippur...) From 2007 I ...
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2answers
1k views

Is it appropriate for a Gentile to attend and/or participate in a Seder?

The context: last year, I saw this sign that announced the time and place that a Jewish Seder (probably Yom Kippur) would happen. I was definitely curious and considered going and at least observing ...
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1answer
104 views

Non-Jewish maid at Seder table

I had heard that non-Jews are not allowed to join the Seder. If someone has a non-Jewish worker who would be offended by being excluded from the Seder, can she be invited out of "darchei Shalom"? Does ...
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0answers
92 views

eBay Judaica auctions

I occasionally check eBay for assorted items; this is typically for the science half of my life, but I sometimes find Judaica which probably should not be sold there. For example, I know that in the ...
6
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1answer
154 views

What if the non-Jew to whom I have sold my chometz converts?

What would be the net effect if the non-Jewish person to whom I have sold my chometz for Pesach converts to Judaism over Pesach?
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3answers
799 views

Is there any problem with thanking a non-Jew by saying “God bless you?”

If your neighbor/coworker/etc. is a religious non-Jew and they do you a favor, is there a problem to say "thank you, God bless you?", assuming you think they'd appreciate hearing that?
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3answers
294 views

December 25 Greetings

Is it permitted say any of the following to a Christian colleague: 1) Merry Christmas 2) Happy Xmas 3) Happy Holidays I am specifically referring to initiating a greeting not responding to such a ...
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2answers
132 views

What's the reason for conquering the different nations in Joshua?

The first book of the prophets, Yehoshua, begins with God commanding Joshua to battle the various nations in Israel. Did these nations do any evil to the Jews prior? Or, was this simply the will of ...
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3answers
83 views

Torah among the nations

Some secular books have a hefty amount of wisdom that we find in our Torah sources. For example, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People has a lot of almost verbatim lessons from Pirkei Avos, although ...
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2answers
280 views

Is praising non-Jews actually prohibited?

The gemara Avodah Zara (20) explains that praising a non-Jew is a violation of "lo sechaneim", and this is quoted in the Rambam (Hil. Avodah Zara 10:6) and the Shulchan Aruch (Y"D 151, and Shach s.k. ...
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1answer
133 views

Matanos L'evyonim to a non-Jew

I live in an area where b"H it is difficult to find Jewish poor. Can matanos l'evyonim be given to non-Jews, or must at least 2 of the poor people be Jewish?
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3answers
114 views

Giving shaloch manos to minor or non-Jew

I have a friend who is planning on converting to Judaism but is not yet Jewish. I know it would mean a lot to him to receive mishloach manos. I would like to know if a person is yotzeh the mitzvah of ...
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2answers
449 views

Did the Romans really argue that all they'd done was so Jews could study Torah?

Okay so I saw something really weird, apparently the Romans and the Persians said "and all of these we did only so that the Jewish People should be able to engage in Torah" in reference to all of the ...
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0answers
50 views

Is property belonging to a human god considered tashmishei avoda zara?

If a non-Jew who is worshipped as a god wants to bring a korban, can we accept it? Normally non-Jews can bring any sacrifices to our God which they want and are not limited to the Temple Mount while ...
4
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1answer
102 views

Why aren't non-Jews buried near Jews or wicked people near good?

A colleague at work asked me why Jews are not buried alongside Non-Jews. He understood why we don't eat with them, but thought those differences should not extend in death and pointed at the ...
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2answers
299 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?
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2answers
284 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 ...
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1answer
129 views

Why was Naaman afflicted with tzaraas specifically?

In Kings II 5:1 we are told that Naaman the general of Aram was afflicted with tzaraas. I have seen several explanations which outline something he did wrong, the punishment for which was tzaraas. ...
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3answers
147 views

Does kavod ha'brios apply to non-Jews?

I would like to know if the idea of kavod ha'brios applies to non-Jews as well. Related to this question.
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3answers
322 views

If a person isn't sure he is Jewish, does he have to keep Mitzvot?

Let's say that a person has a reason to think his mother might be Jewish (there is some evidence, but only a little), and it is likely that the person will never be able to know for sure. In such a ...
3
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1answer
153 views

Having Oneg Shabbos with a non-Jew?

I've heard some frum families not allowing non-Jews at the shabbos table for the Friday night meal, because oneg shabbos is specifically for Jews. Is there a source for this in any writings?
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1answer
427 views

Should someone tell a Jewish doctor about a tattoo of G-d's name?

Background: I am not Jewish. I have a tattoo containing G-d's name. I have been in the process of removing this tattoo using laser treatment. There seems to be some disagreement on whether or not ...
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0answers
91 views

May one host irreligious guests on yom tov?

Although it is permissible to cook on Yom Tov, this heter is limited to cooking for other Jews. Because of this prohibition, Chazal were concerned that if one had non Jews as guests, he would cook ...
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1answer
120 views

Can a non-Jew perform a kiddush/chillul Hashem?

If a non-Jew does an act which would be considered a kiddush Hashem or chillul Hashem if done by a Jew, does it have the same status?
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1answer
118 views

Washing hands after touching a gentile corpse

Does one need to wash hands after touching a gentile corpse just as after a Jewish one?
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1answer
135 views

How is it permissible for a Jewish slave to marry a Canaanite slavewoman?

In Shemot, chapter 21 verse 4, we learn that a master can give his Jewish slave a Canaanite slavewoman to bear the master slave children: If his master gives him a wife, and she bears him sons or ...
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1answer
368 views

What is a ger toshav?

I read in the Book of Isaiah (Is. 56:1-8), about the foreigner joining Hashem. I asked my Rabbi briefly about this passage. He explained that the passage is probably neither about a gerut conversion ...
4
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1answer
89 views

The Prophets from Job Primarily Addressed Gentiles?

Bava Bathra 15b (original text here) says that there were seven prophets that primarily prophesied for gentiles, including Job and his four friends. Is the Talmud saying that the book of Job speaks ...
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2answers
171 views

Why give gentiles an evil prophet?

Rashi in Bamidbar 22:5 addresses Bilam's being a prophet: "Why did the Holy One rest his Divine Presence upon a wicked gentile? So that the nations of the world should not have an excuse [as to why ...
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1answer
82 views

Is there still prophecy among the gentiles?

I would like to know if there is currently, or has every been since the times of Bilaam a genuine prophet among the gentile nations. Meaning, someone who was not Jewish and whose prophecy was only for ...
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0answers
205 views

Are sex change operations prohibited for non-Jews?

In very specific situations some halachic decisors have permitted sex change operations, such as for infants born with some types of genital anomalies. However, the consensus seems to be that they ...
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0answers
67 views

What calendar-dependent laws must non-Jews follow?

While the calendar is vastly important in Judaism, it seems like it is barely applicable to non-Jews. The "big seven" Noahide laws seem to be perenially applicable; they dictate general rules for life ...
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1answer
115 views

Can one say kaddish for a gentile?

We are inclined to say kaddish on the yahrzeit of a very dear friend who was not Jewish, just as we would for a relative. Is there a reason not to? I am also interested to hear reasons why this is a ...
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5answers
984 views

Nittle Nacht Meaning

What is Nittle Nacht? What does the name mean? What is its significance? Which Halachic authorities speak about it, and what do they say? What is the actual date for it? How is it effected this ...
2
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1answer
161 views

Does Lo Techanem apply to online Q&A sites?

Regarding the issur of Lo Techanem, does this apply to giving answers to online Q&A sites such as Stack Overflow, where most likely the questioner is not Jewish?
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2answers
153 views

Poti-phera's Title/Job Description

Genesis 41:45 JPS And Pharaoh called Joseph's name Zaphenath-paneah; and he gave him to wife Asenath the daughter of Poti-phera priest of On. And Joseph went out over the land of Egypt. ...
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2answers
440 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 ...
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0answers
63 views

What are Geonim's definitions of Attiphath Yishma'elim?

I would like to specifically know what the definitions of attiphath yishma'elim were among the Geonim. The opinions of the Rishonim on the subject seem to be convoluted (i.e. no one really knew what ...
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4answers
184 views

Ben Noach Stealing less then a Perutah

The Medrash Rabbah בראשית ל''א ס''ק ה says that what the people of the Dor Hamabul did in order not to have to be punished by their courts is to steal less that a Prutah (minimal Monetary Value) which ...
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3answers
2k views

How does someone not know they're Jewish?

In this answer, someone said they got offended when people wore crosses, especially if they didn't know they were Jewish. I'm just wondering how someone can not know what religion they follow?
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5answers
134 views

Why aren't some the daily brachot made only once in a lifetime?

some of the daily blessings such as thanking God for not making me a non-Jew or (in my case) a woman seem to be things which one would only make a blessing for once in a lifetime. Why are they made ...
4
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2answers
264 views

Is a male considered Jewish if his dad is Jewish and his mom is not jewish but the dad had his male child have a brit-millah

I have uncles and cousins who married non-Jewish women but had their boys have brit-millah when they were babies. Are they considered Jewish under orthodox Judaism?
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0answers
55 views

Greeks' gas lamps

I once heard that there is a source that says the Greeks invented gas lamps or some sort of street lights which enabled the Jews to roam the streets at night and not be with their families. The plan ...
5
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1answer
135 views

Aristotle eating Aiver Min HaChai

I heard there is a Rambam that mentions that Aristotle ate Aiver Min HaChai. I am looking for both the source in the Rambam and any earlier sources that could have been the basis for this.
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3answers
1k views

Why shouldn't Gentiles keep Shabbat?

I know little about Judaism and it's a first time question, so please forgive any mistakes. According to this question non-Jews are forbidden from keeping Shabbat. What is the reasoning behind this? ...
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6answers
3k views

Is it a discouraged or an unacceptable practice for a Gentile to keep the Sabbath?

According to Jewish Law and tradition, is it acceptable, discouraged or totally unacceptable for a Gentile to keep the Sabbath according to the regulations spelled out in the Torah and the Talmud and ...
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2answers
865 views

Can Gentile light a Shabbat Candle and do the Prayers?

I am a gentile, however I am seriously considering to convert. I would like to do some of the Shabbat traditions just to get a feel of the celebration (can you call it that?) like light the candle and ...
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0answers
49 views

Having a non-Jew do malacha for a katan on Yom Tov

On Shabbos a katan (child) gets the din of "choleh shain bo sacana" (a sick person who is not in risk of loosing their life) in regards to their "needs". See OC Siman 276 And Siman 328. And for a ...
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0answers
115 views

What is the Lubavitcher Rebbe's position on gentiles in the Land of Israel

The Rebbe, as is well known, held that it was assur to give away any parts of Eretz Yisrael. But I've never heard what his position on the gentiles living there was. If Judea and Samaria were to be ...
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2answers
150 views

What food product was the Birkei Yosef discussing when he said Bishul Akum didn't apply?

If my non-Jewish neighbor cooks some rice and brings it to my house, I'm not allowed to eat it because of Bishul Akum (even if I know his ingredients and equipment are 100% vegan and grape-free). Too ...