NOTE: Like Wikipedia, this site makes no guarantee of validity, and does not offer professional (particularly rabbinic) advice. Treat information from this site like it came from a crowd of your friends. // Jewish law. Specifically, the legal process beginning with the written Torah and continuing ...

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1answer
226 views

who is liable in kol isha and tzneiz situations?

If a women starts singing in a room with men, despite knowing they observe kol isha, is she liable for her voice being heard or are the men that hear liable? If a women dresses non-tzneiz in front of ...
3
votes
1answer
93 views

Putting the head down for Tachanun with a non-cloth covering

Inspired by this question. The answer there says that you should use "a cloth and not merely one's hand, because a person's own flesh can't be considering a covering for itself." What is the status ...
6
votes
1answer
82 views

Simchas torah and drinking

I have seen that is prohibited to daven while drunk (Drinking during davening). How does chabad justify so much drinking on simchas torah while davening? I have seen shul sanctioned drinking to the ...
1
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1answer
28 views

Is there a problem with two people lighting a double chanukiah?

Is there a problem with two people lighting from a chanukiah that has two Shamashes and 16 candles? Say, Shamash, 8 candles, Shamash, 8 candles, all on one structure?
1
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1answer
35 views

What may a menorah look like?

I'm designing a menorah to build for next Channukah. Are there anything about the Law on how a menorah should look, other than that it holds 9 candles? Must it exactly resemble the traditional ...
9
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1answer
353 views

Mentioning Yeshu's name?

Is there a source for not verbally (or in writing, for that matter) mentioning the name of Yeshu (the father of Christianity)? If there is such a source, what exactly is forbidden to say? Is it only ...
5
votes
1answer
61 views

Homebrewer then converts; are there leniencies that allow him to drink the beer he made?

Suppose a gentile is a homebrewer who later converts to Judaism. Fermentation and aging can be long-running processes, so even if he knew to anticipate the problem and ceased homebrewing activities ...
2
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4answers
112 views

Sefardic and Ashkenazic main halacha book for Even Haezer, Yoreh Deah and Choshen Mishpat?

Besides the Mishna Berurah (Orach Chaim) for ashkenazim and the Kaf Hahaim (Orah Chaim and parts of Yoreh Deah) for Sefardim, what is used to complete the scope of Shulchan Aruch ?
3
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2answers
394 views

On Shabbat, if one can't sleep, may one consume valerian tea? Valerian root powder? Other non-prescription remedies?

Occasionally, on Shabbat, I've had trouble sleeping. The Doctors Book of Home Remedies (Rodale Inc., 2010) includes a section about insomnia, which includes a long list of home remedies. Please note ...
22
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3answers
4k views

Questions about Polygamy in Jewish Law and Culture

I've recently been looking into polygamy (having more than 1 wife), and had a few cultural questions. Was polygamy accepted at the time of David and Solomon? Were there any laws about it? Was ...
-1
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1answer
40 views

Tefillin right before sunset [closed]

If one misses laying tefillin during shakrit, and realizes 5 minutes before sunset that he needs to lay them (particularly for two sets) then he lays Rashi before sunset. How should he proceed after ...
3
votes
1answer
67 views

Can one buy a slave nowadays?

Assuming that there's no legal issues (like the slave doesn't mind, or doesn't know that he can run away), can one buy a slave nowadays in America to have the laws of an Eved Kenaani?
5
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0answers
38 views

How big can a chanukia get?

I recently saw this story about students at YU who lit up their dorm windows to turn the entire building into a giant chanukia (just the form, not a real one). That inspired a question: Exactly how ...
4
votes
1answer
93 views

Can you omit wearing a yarmulka for a job interview?

When going to a job interview, if a person suspects for whatever reason, that he may be unfairly discriminated against if he wears a yarmulka, is he allowed to omit wearing it? Would this be ...
3
votes
1answer
352 views

Chanuka candles if missed the night

If someone, not on purpose, did not light chanuka candles at night, should he light during the day? With or without a brocho?
30
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9answers
2k 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
69 views

Notched 2x4 for maamid?

Let's assume that there is a lechatchila to not use metal object that are mekabel tumah (susceptible to tumah) for something that supports the s'chach ("maamid"), which can be avoided by using ...
1
vote
1answer
164 views

May I temporarily enslave myself, to avoid missing a positive time-bound commandment?

If I know I will be unable to do a positive time-bound commandment, may I sell myself to another Jew until the obligation passes?
8
votes
2answers
145 views

If a convert goes off the derekh, must he go to the mikvah again after he repents?

A female convert I know, who had stopped observing mitzvos for a few years, but then sought to return to the fold, was led to believe by someone that she would have to go again to the mikvah to ...
6
votes
2answers
205 views

Is it true that it is 'Hiddur Mitzvah' to have the Hanukkah lights stay lit for longer?

Does it make a difference if the Hanukkah lights are lit for an hour or an hour and a half? Is it more of a 'Hiddur Mitzvah'?
9
votes
1answer
230 views

What constitutes a shinui?

I was recently taught the concept of a shinui to be "something done in a way that is unusual compared to the norm in one's area of residence", with respect to the permissibility of actions done on ...
8
votes
1answer
167 views

Slavery in halacha today

Are all/any the halachos of slavery still in effect today? For example: If a destitute Jewish person stole and did not have the money to repay, could a modern beis did sell him/her as a slave? If a ...
5
votes
1answer
113 views

The Sciatic Nerve and Fat of Kosher Fowl

I have learned that the sciatic nerve must be removed from land animals to render the meat kosher. But what about fowl? Does the sciatic nerve need to be removed from chicken or turkey? Why or why ...
11
votes
4answers
615 views

Why do we say Shelo Asani Goy?

In Birchas HaShachar we thank God for not making us gentiles by saying "shelo asni goi". Why do we use the negative formation instead of thanking God for making us Jews by saying "she-asani Yehudi" ...
3
votes
1answer
38 views

Can you use a stolen menorah?

Has a person fulfilled the obligation of lighting Chanukah candles if he uses a stolen menorah but owns the candles, match etc.?
24
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3answers
2k views

What are the sources for women to wear/ not wear pants?

I have heard that the argument is beged ish / kli gever, and I have heard people say that even if that was once a real reason for it it doesn't apply today for various reasons. I understand that the ...
4
votes
2answers
142 views

Why can men wear pants if pants are immodest?

I have a question from another post here. If pants are considered to be immodest garments in general, aside from the issue of them being a male garment, why are they permissible for men to wear? Are ...
3
votes
1answer
48 views

If I said the blessings over already lit candles, have I fulfilled my hannukah mitzvah?

On the first night of Hannukah, I got home from work after dinner, and my wife had lit the candles and said the blessings with the kids. I said all three blessings over the already lit candles. In ...
1
vote
2answers
189 views

Torture in Jewish Law Used Against the Enemy

Does Halacha allow Jews to commit physical or psychological torture against their enemies when necessary (e.g. in a time of war, to get vital information from them, etc.) and to what extent is it ...
5
votes
0answers
31 views

Looking for a particular idea from Reb Yonason Eibshitz

I recall reading a quote from Reb Yonason Eibshitz concerning a judge on a beis din of 23 faced with a strange situation. The defendant seems to the judge to be guilty of murder, but this judge is the ...
4
votes
2answers
190 views

When Eidim Zomemim are found guilty who do they pay if it was a monetary case?

When Eidim Zomemim are found guilty who do they pay if it was a monetary case? I can think of reasons to say it's the initial accused, the court, or the person who was said to have been owed the ...
3
votes
2answers
57 views

Why can't someone who can read check the Sefer Torah?

In this question, i talk about if a Sefer Torah might have a misformed letter, a child who can recognize letters but not read is brought to say what letter it is. If everything surrounding is covered ...
5
votes
1answer
640 views

Being a houseguest in a non-frum or non-Jewish home

I'm Jewish, so I have to keep many laws in mind. Kashrut, tefillin, yichud, kol isha, and more. When staying as a houseguest in a non-frum or non-Jewish home, what are some of the issues I might ...
7
votes
1answer
83 views

How to light when getting married on a night of Chanuka

A friend of mine is getting married on one of the nights of Chanuka this year. I do know that he has been in contact with his rabbi about this, but since I'm not sure what he said, I'll post this ...
5
votes
2answers
47 views

What happens if a sefer torah might have a mistake?

If a sefer torah has a definite mistake, it cannot be used, and the reading must be done again from a kosher torah. (SA OC 143:4) But what if it only might have a mistake? For example, if it's ...
6
votes
1answer
57 views

Aiding what you consider sin but he doesn't

There is an action. Let's call it "hoobling". Some pos'kim say hoobling is permitted and others say it's forbidden. (Note: not "say one should ideally be strict". They say it's forbidden.) Suppose ...
8
votes
4answers
767 views

Mail Delivery on Shabbos

Can you take in the mail on Shabbos?
-1
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1answer
44 views

Should we say Leelou Nishmat ou Leelou Nishmata for a deceased woman? [closed]

Should we say Leelou Nishmat or Leelou Nishmata for a deceased woman? I heard a Rabbi saying Leelou Nishmata but it seems quite uncommon. What should we say?
0
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0answers
30 views

Is it permitted to face a Chanukiah when davenning?

Rabbi Yitzchok in the Gemoro Bovo Basro 25b advises אמר רבי יצחק הרוצה שיחכים ידרים ושיעשיר יצפין וסימניך שלחן בצפון ומנורה בדרום Someone who wants to become wise should turn to the south (when ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

jewish in secret or martyrdom? [duplicate]

If I live in a extreme Islamic country that would most likely kill me for being jewish and moving is not an option, is it unacceptable for me to practice in secret? or should I confess my faith and be ...
3
votes
0answers
82 views

Being m'ziah (sweating) individual body parts on Shabbos

If one looks into the Tur Beis Yosef (and Shulchan Aruch) in Orach Chaim 326, you will find the halachos of bathing on Shabbos. The Beis Yosef there points to the gemorah where it outlines the list of ...
8
votes
3answers
264 views

What can be done with my annoying smoke detector on Shabbos?

When your smoke detectors battery is dying, it chirps every 30 seconds to remind you to change it. I am in middle of my Friday night meal when this began. May I move the smoke detector to a area where ...
2
votes
0answers
71 views

Is a triple shvus allowed?

Is there a concept of shvus dishvus with an added shvus making it a rabbinic prohibition 3 times removed. For example if it's yom tov sheini, and the action is rabbinic such as Nolad (turning on a ...
0
votes
0answers
54 views

What are the halachos of חולה שאין בו סכנה on Shabbos?

Ok, so I had my wisdom teeth pulled out yesterday, and besides the pain it's very hard for me to eat regular food. Unfortunately we do not have a gentile to do melachah for me as far as mashing up ...
3
votes
1answer
226 views

Drinking medicine with a straw on shabbas

I saw on Revach.net questions about drinking with a straw and it mentioned that the Mahrsham held that drinking medicine from a straw might be considered a shinui and permitted on shabbas. Does anyone ...
1
vote
2answers
181 views

Electronic cigarettes on Yom Tov

Let's say someone quits smoking, and that person smokes electronics cigarettes. So regarding yom tov (chag), the only prohibition I can think of is Nolad every time you activate the heating element ...
1
vote
1answer
60 views

Answering “Amen” etc after putting on tefillin shel rosh?

For a sefardi that only says one beracha on tefillin, can "Amen" and "Amen - yehe scheme raba..." be answered immediately after putting on the shel rosh but before tying the shel yad around the ...
0
votes
1answer
138 views

Watering Synthetic Grass on Shabbat?

Is there a problem of watering synthetic grass on Shabbat- If the synthetic grass has gaps or "holes" whereby the water can leak through to the earth underneath it? What if the earth underneath ...
1
vote
2answers
45 views

Can we use nail-clippers to shave?

According to this article by Tzomet, it is forbidden for Jewish males to shave their beards with a razor; however, most electric shavers (with the possible exception of "lift and cut" shavers) are ...
7
votes
1answer
70 views

Pikuach Nefesh and different levels of Halacha

Here's a theoretical: if someone has to save a life and has two equally easy options, both of which violate halacha, one d'oraita and one d'rabbanan. Should he choose the d'oraita or the d'rabbanan?