Relations with non-Jews, and laws regarding them.

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10
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3answers
8k 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
1answer
131 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 ...
8
votes
1answer
162 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 ...
8
votes
3answers
249 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
420 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
308 views

Is it acceptable to make someone feel uncomfortable because they have inadvertently done something that you consider undesirable?

Background This question was inspired by the comments (now deleted) under another question. My sister in Williamsburg Brooklyn noticed that Orthodox male strangers were glaring at her for unknown ...
7
votes
1answer
314 views

Where does the Tiferes Yisroel discuss Edward Jenner and smallpox?

I've heard repeatedly that the Tiferes Yisroel describes Dr. Edward Jenner as a righteous gentile for developing the smallpox inoculation -- where is that quote, please?
7
votes
1answer
504 views

“How long is a Jewish wedding?”

If someone who's not familiar with Jewish customs is invited to a Jewish wedding and comes to you to ask how long to plan to be there, how do you respond? It's easy enough to say "It can vary a great ...
7
votes
1answer
323 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. It's a big house on a quiet residential street; the house has been converted into a youth hostel. There's a male-only dorm room; ...
7
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5answers
723 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
237 views

Can a non-Jewish person participate in a bris?

My best friend is Jewish, and I have been involved in most of the most important events in his life. I was the best man at his wedding, I celebrated Hanukkah with his family, and I am the "godfather" ...
6
votes
0answers
141 views

Can one trust gentile sources for trope systems?

Learning the trope systems for specific Sephardic or Mizrahi communities isn't the most easy since many of the melodies have mixed in together (creating something like the Yerushalmi), or just a lack ...
6
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0answers
62 views

Giving to a “mission” collection

In some religions, people accept upon themselves some kind of "mission" to do whatever act to help others. In many cases, it involves collections to send to the poor, or to 3rd world countries. The ...
6
votes
1answer
473 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
54 views

Teaching Machshava and Hashkafa to Non-Jews

I know there is a prohibition against teaching Oral Torah to Non-Jews, but what about Machshava and Hashkafa? Sometime Non-Jews ask questions and the answer relates to either Hashkafa/Machshava. Is it ...
5
votes
1answer
98 views

Government subsidies or tzedoko

it is preferable not to take charity from non-Jews (maybe only if it is not in private) Source Yore daiya 254 In a case of need (someone needs money for housing and/or food), which is more ...
5
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0answers
94 views

Should you ask a stranger in your shul if he is Jewish?

We've had a few questions similar to this one that deal with assuming that you have a minyan, when in fact you don't. Shuls are, generally, open to anyone. We usually assume that when a stranger ...
5
votes
2answers
132 views

Why “בְּנֵי עַמּוֹן”?

Genesis 19:37–38 (JPS): וַתֵּלֶד הַבְּכִירָה בֵּן וַתִּקְרָא שְׁמוֹ מוֹאָב הוּא אֲבִי מוֹאָב עַד הַיּוֹם. וְהַצְּעִירָה גַם הִוא יָלְדָה בֵּן וַתִּקְרָא שְׁמוֹ בֶּן עַמִּי הוּא אֲבִי בְנֵי ...
5
votes
1answer
115 views

Bat mitzvah gift from non-Jew

Would it be offensive for my daughter to give her friend a Star of David necklace for her Bat Mitzvah? We are not Jewish but my daughter wants to recognize her friend in a meaningful way. Thank you.
5
votes
1answer
200 views

Can a Jew name a child after a (deceased) non-Jew (non-relative)?

Can a Jew name a child after a (deceased) non-Jew (non-relative)? Is there any prohibition against it?
5
votes
0answers
104 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
1answer
126 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
948 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
5answers
622 views

In What Sense Non Jews Should Obey/Disobey Torah?

There are 2 opinions. In some cases I've heard that God reward anyone that obey Torah. Also, I think I read somewhere in exodus that anyone living in Israel, be it foreigners or not, must not work ...
5
votes
5answers
331 views

Why do we read Yona on Yom Kippur?

Why do we read Yona of all things on Yom Kippur? There are better tales of teshuvah that are more relevant to klall yisroel; why was this sefer, which deals exclusively with non-Jews doing teshuva, ...
5
votes
1answer
450 views

Does God discriminate between Jewish and non-Jewish people?

I often wonder if God has a different attitude towards people who are not Jews. Why Jews are consisdered to be most favored nation? Does that mean that all other people are inferior to Jews? Wouldn't ...
5
votes
1answer
478 views

Mamzer from non-Jew

If a Jewess married to a Jew has a child from a non-Jew is that child a mamzer? Is there agreement amongst the poskim about this?
5
votes
2answers
201 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
156 views

Non-Orthodox converts and Olam Ha-Ba

Would a Gentile who converted through a non-orthodox movement be judged as a Gentile or a Jew in Olam Ha-Ba? In regards to the judgement, would his/her action of converting and living a "Jewish" ...
4
votes
5answers
349 views

What happened to the mitzvah to love the stranger?

This commandment is repeated at least three times in the Torah--in Leviticus 19, Deuteronomy 10, Exodus 22, and Leviticus 25. Leviticus 19:33-34 say: "When a stranger resides with you in your ...
4
votes
2answers
696 views

Can I use a Mikvah if I am not Jewish?

Although I was baptised as a Christian, I feel a strong sense of connection to Judaism and would like to use the Mikvah. I understand that some people believe there is no point/need because I am not ...
4
votes
1answer
114 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
150 views

Who do B'nei Noach turn to for psak?

My understanding is that there are a few organized groups of non-Jews who strive to follow the Noahide laws. Just like Jews, B'nei Noach might have situations where the correct action to take is ...
4
votes
3answers
311 views

Does amirah L'akum apply to robots?

Can you ask/instruct a robot on shabbos to perform melacha on your behalf? Would this fall under the same category as amirah l'akum?
4
votes
4answers
786 views

Are Jews racist against non-Jews? [closed]

Are Jews racist against non-Jews?
3
votes
1answer
103 views

Buying from non-Jews, or selling to non-Jews, within three days of their holidays

Yoreh De'ah 148:1 says, in part: שְׁלשָׁה יָמִים לִפְנֵי חַגָּם שֶׁל גּוֹיִים עוֹבְדֵי אֱלִילִים אָסוּר לִקַּח מֵהֶם וְלִמְכֹּר לָהֶם דָּבָר הַמִּתְקַיֵּם. וּמֻתָּר לִמְכֹּר לָהֶם דָּבָר שֶׁאֵינוֹ ...
3
votes
1answer
106 views

Can a gentile volunteer to perform prohibited actions on behalf of a Jew on Shabbat?

My mom grew up in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and then moved to Long Island, and in both places, she was quite happy to serve as a Shabbos Goy (gentile who does things for Jews on the Sabbath that would ...
3
votes
1answer
113 views

Has Judaism succeeded or failed at being a light unto the nations? [closed]

In Isaiah 42:6 we read I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and have taken hold of thy hand, and kept thee, and set thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the nations I have ...
3
votes
1answer
212 views

Why is asking a non-Jew to turn on electric lights considered amira l'nochri?

Given that practically all poskim accept R' Shlomo Zalmen's view that electricity is d'rabbanan over the Chazon ish, I would think that a Jew could simply ask a non-Jew to turn on/off lights on ...
3
votes
0answers
184 views

Non-Jew who takes a Jewish name

Let's say someone goes through an invalid conversion, and now they incorrectly think they are Jewish. They pick a Jewish name for themselves, and they are called up to the Torah by that name and use ...
3
votes
0answers
155 views

Tune for Avinu Malkeinu has non-Jewish source?

Some synagogues do not sing the last stanza of Avinu Malkeinu to this tune out of belief that it has a non-Jewish, possibly Christian, source. Is this tune in fact not Jewish? Note: even if the tune ...
3
votes
4answers
225 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
389 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?
3
votes
2answers
249 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?
3
votes
2answers
933 views

Halachic law about inviting a Jew for dinner by a Gentile

I know that Observant Jews are commanded by law to eat Kashrut or kosher, so can I as a Gentile invite my Jewish friend for dinner, for example at a marriage or engagement party? What food items ...
3
votes
3answers
403 views

Did Chazal know about China and the Chinese? and from which of Noach's sons do they hail?

The silk road from the Far East to Asia probably operated from about 200 B.C.E although it was not a direct trading route but worked in stages; so there was no direct contact from say China to ...
3
votes
3answers
168 views

Why offer the Nations mitzvos from the Torah that are already in the Noahide Laws?

When Hashem went around offering the Torah to the other nations each asked what is written therein to each nation He told them of the commandment representing their weak point or vice, hence they ...
2
votes
0answers
119 views

When a chain store advertises a “Holiday” or “End of Year” sale, may I buy their product?

My question is related to this one. The linked question focuses on the phrasing in the ad of referring to "Christmas", so it seems obvious that they are referring to a specific holiday. My question ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Can a Jewish woman sing in front of a non-Jewish man?

Suppose I am a Jewish woman. Suppose I am in a taxi (or similar semiprivate place) with a male cab driver who I am quite sure is not Jewish. May I sing in front of him? Hypothesis: That since the ...
2
votes
2answers
439 views

Can a Jew have a non-Jewish “bashert” or vice-versa?

Follow-up to "Do non-jews have soul mates?": Can a Jew have a non-Jewish "bashert" (Divinely designated soul-mate) or vice-versa?