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7
votes
1answer
310 views

How is it that one is allowed to have an alarm on shabbos?

Can one leave an alarm to go off on Shabbos morning? If one can, then can it play anything, music, radio, etc?
11
votes
1answer
312 views

What Halachot apply to serving on jury duty?

Halachically, what are the responsibilities of one who is called to jury duty? What if one of the litigants is Jewish, and the halacha would find differently than civil law does in the case, are you ...
15
votes
3answers
296 views

What potential issues may arise with serving jury duty on Tisha b'Av?

I was recently summoned for jury duty and initially selected to be on the jury for a criminal trial that was expected to go through Tisha b'Av. If I were selected, what issues would I face in serving ...
12
votes
7answers
569 views

Is it required to stand during Kaddish?

I've noticed that there are varying minhagim among people whether to stand during Kaddish or not. Is there any actual halacha regarding this and whether it's required?
8
votes
1answer
92 views

Are bushes acceptable for elevations that require a maakeh, a fence?

If evergreen bushes span the entire length of a side of a porch, at about waist-height for someone on the porch, do the bushes remove the need for a railing? The difference being that a railing can be ...
20
votes
2answers
1k views

Can an ecommerce website remain open on Shabbat?

This question is more general and doesn't apply specifically to ecommerce sites even though the discussion mentions them a little. Specifically, we know we can't do business on Shabbat. So what is ...
12
votes
2answers
337 views

If you realize you're carrying on Shabbat, what's the best thing to do?

I've heard that you should put it down on a makom patur while still walking. However, a true makom patur is tall and skinny, like a post, and therefore possibly difficult to find. I've also heard ...
7
votes
1answer
268 views

What height porch requires a railing?

What are the different opinions of heights (in American or metric units) that requires a railing for the side of a porch?
7
votes
1answer
182 views

How to prevent holes when double wrapping food?

When cooking milk in a meat oven (or kosher food in a treif one) I often find that when one wraps using aluminum foil, small holes appear (probably from the heat). I was wondering if anyone knows a ...
16
votes
1answer
571 views

Why don't we bow “correctly” during tefillah anymore?

According to the Gemara (Megillah 22b), and according to the RaMBa"M (Hil. Tefillah 5:13) (and apparently R' Avraham ben HaRaMBa"M was adamant), when we pray we are supposed to bow down ON our knees (...
6
votes
2answers
246 views

Tachanun for Shacharis in the afternoon, on a day where there is no Tachanun at Mincha

If you start Shacharis Shmonei Esrei just before Chatzos, on a day where there is no Tachanun said at Mincha, and finished after Chatzos, do you say Tachanun?
3
votes
1answer
235 views

Which rabbis forbade cars 100 years ago?

"Venishmartem Meod Lenafshoseichem" I heard that there were Rabbonim about 100 years ago who forbade cars, saying that they were dangerous. Does anyone know who they were?
13
votes
3answers
937 views

When does somebody living in space (e.g. ISS) observe Shabbat?

I understand that Jewish astronauts have been advised to observe Shabbat by Cape Canaveral time, by analogy with traveling to a place that doesn't have daily sunrise/sunset where some rule you use the ...
8
votes
1answer
108 views

Honouring an older person

What sources are there for showing respect and honour to an old person who is not necessarily a talmid chochom or a parent?
5
votes
1answer
203 views

Halachos Related to Visiting the Kosel

When one is visiting the western wall, what are some specific halachos that he/she should be cognizant of? By "specific halachos" I mean halachos that only apply to the Kosel -- and not anywhere else....
9
votes
3answers
269 views

What is the Minimum Width of Tefillin Straps?

What is the minimum width of tefillin straps? For example: if one's tefillin straps partially tore, how much is required to remain for the tefillin to remain Kosher?
4
votes
2answers
213 views

Why is the right strap longer than the left strap by the Tefilin Shel Rosh?

What is the reason that the right strap is longer than the left strap by the Tefilin Shel Rosh?
5
votes
2answers
290 views

What is the proper length of the Tefilin Shel Rosh straps?

How long are the Tefilin Shel Rosh straps supposed to be? What is the minimum Shiur and what is the maximum?
5
votes
2answers
1k views

When does the prohibition against eating meat during the 9 Days start?

does the prohibition regarding eating meat start at night or in the morning? If this is unclear... On Rosh Chodesh (the night of, the night we say yala ve yavo) can we have meet for dinner? I know ...
4
votes
1answer
150 views

Keeping one or two days of Yom Tov in towns outside the biblically stipulated borders of Israel?

If you’re living in Amman, Jordan, I believe that you need to keep two days of Yom Tov. But if you’re in Eilat, you keep one day. Why?
3
votes
2answers
198 views

When a Bris is being done for a baby at the same time as his Pidyon HaBen

If a baby who is a Bechor had his Bris delayed to the 31st day, and now on the 31st day he is ready to have his Bris and it is also the day of his Pidyon HaBen - which Mitzva should be done first? Do ...
5
votes
3answers
345 views

When a Bechor's Bris is delayed beyond the day of the Pidyon HaBen

If a baby who is a Bechor had his Bris delayed beyond the 31st day - should the Pidyon HaBen be pushed off until the Bris is ready to be done? On one side you do not want to delay a Mitzva in its ...
36
votes
11answers
3k views

Why is it necessary to ask a Rabbi?

In various places on this site, including the FAQ, we have the following disclaimer: Like Wikipedia, this site makes no guarantee of validity, and does not offer professional (particularly ...
11
votes
2answers
527 views

Halachic Considerations for Women in the IDF

For a religious girl going into the IDF very soon, there are a few questions that are often asked: Especially in active units, wearing a skirt while on base can be a problem: While crawling, ...
6
votes
2answers
644 views

Why do the laws of kitniyot still apply today to Ashkenazi Jews on Passover?

How did the tradition start? Why is it still around today? What is the basis for this Halacha (הלכה)?
1
vote
1answer
237 views

What was the 'evolution' of determining who is part of the Jewish people?

Starting with Abraham and continuing till modern halacha. how has the halacha regarding who is part of the Jewish people changed? What were the causes of the change, and the reasoning, and the change ...
4
votes
4answers
486 views

Fasting on the wedding day - when getting married right before or after a fast

When a person gets married a day before Yom Kippur or a day after Tzon Gedalya - does he/she have to fast two days in a row?
4
votes
2answers
159 views

Sheva Brachos at a Bris

If a Chosson & Kallah during the first week they got married attended a Bris, should the assembled recite Sheva Brachos after Bentching?
9
votes
3answers
690 views

What evidence is required to indicate mamzer status?

It seems to me that just about every possible shadow of doubt is used to prevent halachic rulings that would classify a person as a mamzer. From my understanding after having read this paragraph on ...
10
votes
4answers
406 views

What is the best way to visualize the Churban Bais HaMikdash?

It is now thousands of years since the Churban Bais HaMikdash. Many jews feel very comfortable in their surroundings. What is the best way for a person to visiualize the great loss of the Bais ...
3
votes
2answers
555 views

Davening Maariv at Shekiya / or after Plag HaMincha - repeating Kriyas Shema

If a person prays Maariv after Plag HaMincha prior to Shekiya is there any Halachic authority that holds he is Yotzei the Mitzva of Kriyas Shema and does not have to repeat it? What if he prays right ...
1
vote
2answers
309 views

Would the internet be considered muktzeh due to Nolad (a new thing)

There is a category of muktzeh on shabbat called Nolad. Nolad means literally, something that is born on shabbat. It is interpreted in the modern era, as meaning anything which you did not have ...
2
votes
2answers
194 views

Requirments for the Document of a Jewish divorce and its messenger

Does a "get" (Jewish divorce document) need to be written on a Klaf (parchment)? And what are the halachic requirements to be a shaliach (agent) for a "get"? May a man send a woman as his shaliach (...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

May one swim on Shiva Asar B'Tamuz?

May one swim on Shiva Asar B"Tamuz? If not, why not? (sources)
5
votes
1answer
215 views

Halachically prohibited but nevertheless valid acts

The Magid Mishna on Hilchos G'zela Va'aveda 1:9 quotes the rule that מילתא דאמר רחמנא 'לא תעביד' - אי עביד לא מהני מידי Something regarding which the Torah said "don't do [it]" - if one does ...
2
votes
2answers
560 views

Can a person start swimming in the three weeks?

Someone told me that if a person did not swim prior to the three weeks, he may not start swimming during the three weeks? Is there a source for this? (sources)
6
votes
4answers
2k views

Is it okay to drive a car on the Sabbath?

The Five Books of Moses mention not stoking a fire on the Sabbath, if I remember correctly. By starting a car, I'd think I am stoking a fire. Is this okay to do for a Jew? Why or why not?
3
votes
2answers
317 views

Must I take maaser from my income nowadays?

I heard that we don't have to give maaser from our income nowadays because we are outside of Israel and without the Beit Hamikdash. Is this true?
6
votes
4answers
544 views

Kissing Tzitzis during Shema

There are those that kiss their Tzitzis during Shema at Shacharis as per Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 17:7 and the Kaf HaChaim 18 and there are those that do not. What is the source and reason for those that ...
3
votes
2answers
578 views

Which actions are prohibited even to save a life?

I know that many commandments, e.g. keeping Shabbat, not lying, etc., must be violated if doing so is necessary to save a life. For which commandments is this not true? Does it ever matter how many ...
7
votes
1answer
215 views

Amon and Moav today

The Halacha is that a Jewish woman may not marry a convert of Amon and Moav. Is there any way to know who is a descendant of Amon and Moav today?
3
votes
2answers
121 views

What qualities are necessary in a halachic wrapping?

There are occasions, e.g. a mezuza in a sometimes-unbecoming environment, in which we're required to cover a holy object with one or two wrappings to separate it from various environmental elements. ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Wearing Watches on Shabbat

What is a watch one can wear on shabbat? There are the analogue quartz watches with just one crown to adjust the time that (as far as I'm aware) most people would wear on shabbat (especially an ...
21
votes
5answers
3k views

Is practicing Yoga against Torah?

What does Halacha and Halachic Authorities have to say about the permissibility of a Jew practicing Yoga? Is it Avodah Zarah? If it is problematic, are there methods of doing it where it would be ...
5
votes
1answer
95 views

Are there any halachic issues with cut flowers grown in Israel?

Produce grown in Israel is subject to many additional agricultural laws (shemita, terumah, maaser, etc.). Thus occasionally there are alerts about bell peppers, etc. for sale in American supermarkets ...
7
votes
1answer
176 views

Halakhic problem with indirectly effecting posthumous Mormon baptism?

Would there be any halakhic problem with using LDS resources to do family history research, if you knew it would result in deceased Jews being named in posthumous baptism rituals? Or is this ...
7
votes
2answers
612 views

Minimal requirements for bedtime shema

What is the minimal required text to say for the bedtime shema? Is it sufficient to say only Hamapil and the first paragraph of shema?
5
votes
1answer
177 views

Sheva Berachot at third meal

If sheva brachot occur at a seudah shlishit which finishes after sunset, is one allowed to drink the wine even though it is prior to making havdala? If yes, who specifically would be allowed to drink ...
7
votes
1answer
360 views

Can one play darts on shabbat?

Can one play darts on shabbat? And can one then do archery on shabbat, assuming there are no words or numbers on the target, and the bows remain strung throughout shabbat?
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Why does a girl become Bat Mitzvah at 12 years old?

We learn that a Bar Mitzvah is at age 13, since it says in Bamidbar 5:6: Tell the children of Israel: When a man (אִישׁ) or woman commits any of the sins against man to act treacherously against ...