Questions about theoretical issues about psak and general halacha concepts

learn more… | top users | synonyms (3)

5
votes
1answer
178 views

How should one decide which Halacha to follow?

There are so many different halachot and custom nowadays, I have a lot of questions on how should one decide what halacha to follow. Let's say I have an halacha question. The way I see it, I have ...
1
vote
1answer
42 views

Arising in the morning and baal t'shaktzu

Im learning about getting up in the morning and learned that one must wash their hands before anything else otherwise they will violate the prohibition of baal t'shaktzu? What is baal t'shaktzu?
2
votes
0answers
25 views

Interrupting a rabbinical mitzvah to perform a Biblical mitzvah [duplicate]

In general, one does not interrupt a mitzvah (with the exception of Torah study) in order to do another mitzvah. However, this answer, in its citation of the Ran, alludes to some complications of this ...
5
votes
0answers
56 views

What is a shevut d'shevut, and why is it permitted?

I understand there is a notion called shevut d'shevut (and the related gezeira l'gezeira), whereby, in some cases, one may violate a rabbinic prohibition if and only if this is achieved through ...
-5
votes
1answer
55 views

Is Halakhic law man-made?

I heard it is. I heard that the Torah only states what is wrong (adultery, stealing, killing, etc.), but it doesn't establish any punishment for it. So some men decided to assign stoning to the crime ...
4
votes
2answers
37 views

What is the source of the obligation to listen to the Sanhedrin once it left Jerusalem?

The source of listening to the high court typically comes from Devarim 17:8-10: If there arise a matter too hard for thee in judgment, between blood and blood, between plea and plea, and between ...
0
votes
2answers
42 views

What exactly were they (planning on) doing wrong here (yShabbat 16:1)?

אע''פ שאמרו אין קורין בכתבי הקודש אלא מן המנחה ולמעלה אבל שונין ודורשין בהן׃ צרך דבר נוטל ובודק׃ דלמא רבי ורבי חייא רבא ור' ישמעאל בי רבי יוסה היו יושבין ופושטין במגילת קינות ערב תשעה באב שחל להיות ...
-1
votes
1answer
41 views

Moshiach or gan eden [duplicate]

What is the purpose of everything, our Torah and mitzvos. Is it to go to gan Eden in olam haba or is it to bring moshiach? Whenever I ask people usually I get either answer. Can someone clarify like ...
0
votes
0answers
12 views

Can I make mikveh rainwater by condensing steam? [duplicate]

Since rain is caused by water evaporated from oceans and rivers which later condenses from clouds, can rainwater for a mikveh be synthesized by creating steam and then condensing it?
1
vote
0answers
38 views

Is this an effective means of being tested on Talmud [closed]

I'm in tenth grade and I'm concerned that the way we are tested Talmud in school is not effective. You see, we learn a small sugya of Gemara and then learn through a multitude of Rishonim and ...
2
votes
0answers
33 views

Why do we refer to Chazal as a monolithic group?

In discussions of Torah, halacha, etc., people often say, "According to Chazal..." as though all the thousands of rabbis of an 800-year period spoke with one voice. But you almost never hear people ...
1
vote
0answers
37 views

Zaken Mamrei vs. Par He'elem Davar

This past weekend I was reading through the Torah Temimah on Vayikra and a paradox occurred to me. The Zaken Mamre is specifically applied to one who is in a position of authority over a community. ...
1
vote
0answers
36 views

Tzitzis put on a borrowed garment that is later acquired. Take them off and reattach them?

From Torah Law, I need only put tzitzis on my own four-cornered garment. From Rabbinic Law, I need to attach tzitzis to a borrowed garment only after 30 consecutive days, see Oruch HaShulchan, O Ch ...
0
votes
2answers
118 views

How to Reconcile if/when the Jewish Day Was to Begin at Sunset?

Question: Are there any historical documents that detail the differences in opinions on when the "Jewish Day" began? (Perhaps between Sadducee and Pharisee/Rabbinic definitions, etc). What the ...
1
vote
0answers
59 views

Suicide to prevent Zombification

This is a serious question which deals with what is now a fictional construct, but one that has ramifications and which has been dealt with (in other situations) by halachic discussion such as this ...
2
votes
2answers
53 views

Understanding a qal vechomer in the Mishna

This is a fairly long-handled question, but it boils down to a desire to understand R' Shimon's qal vechomer in the Mishna, Negaim 10:2. Usually, for a qal vechomer to work, there needs to be a ...
7
votes
1answer
121 views

When and how was the Shulchan Aruch accepted

After the Shulchan Aruch was put together by the Beis Yosef and then following that with the glosses of the Rema, when did this sefer became "accepted" as the basis for deciding halachic matters in ...
4
votes
1answer
38 views

Why are there not metalworking avos m'lachos?

We find that the avos m'lachos (classes of forbidden activity on shabas) are based upon the labors associated with the mishkan (tabernacle) in the mishna (e.g. Shabas 11:6) and g'mara (e.g. Shabas 97)....
0
votes
0answers
47 views

Same Rabbi (Posek) for husband and wife

Does a husband a wife need to have the same Rabbi (Posek) or can they have their own Rabbi's?
3
votes
1answer
323 views

Biur Chametz and hefsek

On the evening of the day before Pesach, we search for Chametz and put aside what we find so that we may destroy it in some way the next morning. Before we start, we make the bracha "al biur chametz" (...
5
votes
3answers
186 views

Prior to the Men of the Great Assembly (and after Moses, our teacher), could halacha be decided by prophecy?

I think that I remember hearing that during the times of the Men of the Great Assembly, it was decided that prophecy would no longer be used to determine halachic rulings, i.e that before then it was ...
2
votes
1answer
113 views

When the Messiah comes, will the decisions/laws of Chazal still be in effect?

When the Messiah comes, will the various decisions and laws established by ChaZAL (i.e those after prophecy departed from Israel) still be in effect, or will the return of prophecy nullify the ...
1
vote
0answers
53 views

Machlokes Deoraisa vs Muttar - non-Jew vs Jew

If one Rav paskens somemthing is Asur Deoraisa and another Paskens totaly mutar, beshas hadechak is it better to get a non jew to do it or a jew whose rav holds its muttar? For example, if a certain ...
2
votes
1answer
77 views

An obligation to intervene?

I was posed a hypothetical question about medical ethics today. I am not looking for a psak as much as for sources on the discussion about halachic responsibility. Case 1: You are personally told by ...
-1
votes
1answer
80 views

Can a public road include an underground area below it to qualify as a Reshut Harabim?

On Shabbat, one may not carry in a Reshut Harabim. Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 81:2 says that there is an opinion that a road not having at least 600,000 people passing by it daily would not be considered ...
1
vote
2answers
144 views

Reshus Horabim Today?

The most lenient shita for a reshus horabim i have ever heard of is that 600,000 people must pass on the road EVERY day. Do any roads with daily CAPACITY for 600,000 people exist today? Do any roads ...
3
votes
2answers
39 views

Relative status of biblical and rabbinic transgressions

In the opening chapter of Sefer Tanya, the rebbe notes that failure to perform a positive biblical commandment is worse than performing a rabbinic transgression. In his words: “Even one who ...
2
votes
2answers
73 views

חזקה מעיקרה vs ספק

I am in the middle of מחלוקת with someone as to, if I originally had a חזקה and now there's a ספק to whether that status is still true, whether I maintain that original status or my status changes to ...
6
votes
2answers
66 views

Reward and punishment for indirect mitzvot and averot

If I create something with a certain purpose, and it's used for another purpose (good or bad), do I have a share in the mitzvot or averot people made with my creation? I'll give three examples to make ...
0
votes
0answers
76 views

Was Gematria taken from other cultures?

The wikipedia entry of gematria starts by stating the following: Gematria [...] is an Assyro-Babylonian-Greek system of code and numerology later adopted into Jewish culture that assigns numerical ...
4
votes
1answer
67 views

How much weight must we give to the Council of Sages opinions

As I understand it, there is no hierarchy within Judaism, per se. In fact, following a controversial decision by Rav Elyashev, he mentioned to a friend of mine that his rulings really only apply to ...
2
votes
1answer
34 views

Writing Responsa in English

I was reading the introduction to Rabbi Yehuda Henkin's book "Responsa on Contemporary Jewish Women's Issues" and he wrote something that I found interesting: Whether Halachic response should be ...
3
votes
1answer
80 views

Placing Tefillin on the floor

I've been taught since little that one can't place a pair of Tefillins on the floor, and that one must carefully avoid not dropping them. But what is considered being on the floor? For example, can I ...
4
votes
0answers
93 views

Is there a chazakah (halachic presumption) that an Eruv is down after a blizzard?

I remember, I was once at shul Friday night, and it was just starting to snow and it was predicted to be a huge blizzard. The Rabbi got up and announced that tomorrow people should work under the ...
2
votes
1answer
86 views

Can one use an Eruv if the Rabbi who built it says its down?

If a Rav Hamachsheir of an Eruv, the Rabbi who built it and supervises its use, sends out a message that he holds that the Eruv is down because of a particular reason (reason X), and should not be ...
1
vote
2answers
67 views

Homeopathic or unscientific medicine on shabbos

On shabbos there is a rabbinic prohibition against doing many medicinal things. Is the whole requirement that he is doing it for medicine and that it looks medicinal, or must it actually be ...
2
votes
0answers
24 views

How does a chiyuv due to chinuch work? [closed]

We frequently see statements in halacha like "the minor's obligation to do the mitzva is only rabbinically imposed (mid'rabanan), because it's only because of chinuch (=the obligation to educate one's ...
4
votes
2answers
46 views

Does the use Rabbi Yishmael's principles retain the de'oraiso character of the original statement?

If we use one of Rabbi Yishmael's 13 principles of interpreting the Torah to learn from a Torah law (de'oraiso), does the inferred law also have the status of a de'oraiso? (Related: Where can I find ...
3
votes
1answer
121 views

Under what circumstances can Ashkenazim rely on Sephardic poskim?

Is there any reason an Ashkenazi Jew should not hold by the psak of a Sephardi rov--or vice versa--for decisions relating to general matters (not ostensibly to do with particular minhagim)? If so, ...
5
votes
4answers
168 views

Weighing mitzvot/aveirot

I apologize for the somewhat vague question; it was difficult to write. I would welcome any specific editing suggestions. What matters in the calculation of a person's righteousness? Is it: Number ...
5
votes
2answers
127 views

If two rabbis tell you opposite things which do you listen to?

If you ask two rabbis the same question and they give you opposite answers (one says mutar the other says assur). Which do you listen to?
2
votes
2answers
97 views

If you were born one sect (Ashkenaz) but wanted to become another (Sephardi), do you have to go through conversion?

I encountered a man who found out he was Jewish with Ashkenazi lineage, but for personal reasons converted to Sephardi. Never heard of this before. I remember learning there are several halachot in ...
7
votes
2answers
134 views

What is the basis that allows Rabbis to create laws?

I understand that the Torah gives instructions to obey Judges for legal cases and questions, but what is the basis that Rabbis have for creating new laws, such as for celebrating Chanukah with a ...
4
votes
1answer
76 views

Hillel's formulation of the Golden Rule

Hillel said, "That which is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow. This is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary; go and learn it." - Babylonian Talmud, Shabbat 31a This is similar to the ...
3
votes
2answers
171 views

Immoral Halacha

In a conversation concerning the normal sensitive halachic issues, e.g. gender roles, homosexuality, etc., I recently heard a rabbi state that they found parts of halacha and the torah unethical and ...
2
votes
1answer
115 views

How does one avoid mysticism?

If someone is a strict Rationalist, and does not believe in many forms of Jewish mysticism, how does one go about avoiding it? I ask because kabbalistic mysticism has infiltrated many halakhoth and ...
4
votes
2answers
101 views

Can someone stop being supported by his father without his father's permission?

From the shulchan aruch (yora deya 240.5 end) אֲבָל חַיָּב לְכַבְּדוֹ בְּגוּפוֹ, אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁמִּתּוֹךְ כָּךְ בָּטֵל מִמְּלַאכְתּוֹ, וְיִצְטָרֵךְ לְחַזֵּר עַל הַפְּתָחִים. וְדַוְקָא דְּאִית ...
1
vote
1answer
22 views

Audio Shiurim on Halacha Theory

While there are plenty of websites that are offering audio recordings on "what the halacha is," i haven't found any that help teach you how you as an individual can learn about the halachic process to ...
4
votes
2answers
91 views

Arba Misos- 1 Mitzvah or 4?

Tosfos on Makos 2a (Kol Hazomemin) brings a Tosefta which says that if you can't give someone their destined Arba Misos (meaning the one their Aveira warranted), you can give them a different one, ...
0
votes
0answers
17 views

Status of a functional Male with hidden functional Female internal organs [duplicate]

I've found out this condition where a Male has a certain genetic condition where the primitive female organs, present in every foetus, are not absorbed and develop as "usual". A documented case in the ...