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6
votes
1answer
130 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?
2
votes
2answers
647 views

Are psilocybin mushrooms permitted/prohibited/advocated in Jewish law or tradition?

What does Jewish law or tradition have to say about magic mushrooms? Or in general, about any hallucinogen. Is it forbidden to consume psilocybin mushrooms or other hallucinogens? Is it advocated? ...
1
vote
0answers
99 views

How to bury old s'farim

Suppose I have a printed Chumash with Rashi, or the like, which is worn out to the point of inutility, and I wish to discard it. My understanding (based in part on sources I supply below) is that I ...
2
votes
1answer
133 views

The order of the wording of the Ben Sorrer U'Moreh source Mishnah

In Mishna 1 of of the Eighth Perek of Masechet Sanhedrin it states that we know the ages in which the halachot of ben sorrer u'moreh apply from the fact that the Torah says "ben" (boy) and not "ish" ...
2
votes
2answers
72 views

Two manos of meat

The Rambam says that one can give "two portions (manos) of meat" as mishloach manos. The Aruch Hashulchan 695:14 explains the Rambam should read "two types (minim) of meat": וברור הדבר דצריך לשלוח ...
2
votes
1answer
174 views

Bracha Achrona with a little pasta and a lot of rice

Suppose someone makes a borei minei mezonos bracha on pasta (whose bracha achrona is al hamichya), and exempts rice (whose bracha achrona is borei nefashos) that he is planning on eating as well. If ...
6
votes
3answers
509 views

Can a prophet add to or change the Torah?

Is it possible for a prophet to add to the Torah, or change any of it? Can a prophet say that God has told him that certain parts no longer apply or are wrong? How do we know?
4
votes
0answers
74 views

Geographic size of an Eruv

Inspired by Is Juneau, Alaska -- surrounded by natural barriers -- a natural eruv Is there a maximum square mile or square kilometer area that may be enclosed by an Eruv? (sources)
6
votes
0answers
84 views

Is Juneau, Alaska — surrounded by natural barriers — a natural eruv

I recently visited Juneau, Alaska. It is a small city of 35,000. The city limits are quite large, however -- 3,225 square miles -- but much of this area is separated from downtown Juneau on Douglas ...
4
votes
0answers
187 views

Do other Chasidic communities follow Shulchan Aruch HaRav?

The Maggid of Mezeritch told the Baal HaTanya to put together a Shulchan Aruch for Chasidim. The result is the Shulchan Aruch HaRav, which is used as a final authority for halacha in Chabad ...
3
votes
1answer
84 views

Can I sit for “Kabbolas Shabbos” within 4 amos of someone saying the mincha Amidah?

Tefillo Kehilchoso (ch. 11, fn. 284) and Shulchan Oruch (102:1) quote Tosephos Brochos 31b to say that one may sit beside someone praying the amidah if one is involved in prayer activity. He asserts ...
-12
votes
3answers
741 views

Did the Rambam say it's OK for a Jew to convert to Islam? [closed]

I read that the Rambam considered a Jew who converts to Islam NOT to be an Apikorus(אפיקורוס)\heretic or an ovdei avodah zarah, as opposed to a convert to Christianity who he considered to be heretic ...
3
votes
0answers
102 views

Strike chest in “S'lach lanu” on Shabas?

Suppose someone is praying maariv, shacharis, or mincha on Shabas, starts the weekday amida's blessings, and then realizes, amid those weekday blessings, that he should be saying the amida of Shabas. ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

Jews allowed to pray and join Muslim congregation in Mosques and Experiences

I had read somewhere in Maimonidian literature that Jews are allowed to pray in Mosques. Is it even allowed for them to Join the Muslim congregation and pray the Salat for they worship the same God ...
5
votes
1answer
132 views

Mezuzah on rental property

If you own a home that you rent out, are you obligated to place a Mezuzah (or Mezuzoth) on that property? What if the property is attached to your home, such as a basement apartment or add-on suite?
3
votes
1answer
71 views

Can you use the bimah as a shortcut?

I read online that one cannot take a shortcut from one area of the shul to another if it cuts through the area of the bimah. The pertinent line is: Just as the Mizbeiach was elevated, our Bimah, ...
5
votes
3answers
287 views

How to get drunk on Purim and still pray?

There is a halachic problem, as has been discussed previously, with praying while being drunk. If someone gets drunk on Purim, how does he manage to fulfill the mitzvah to pray three times a day? ...
1
vote
1answer
326 views

What is the ruling of adultery in Torah or Tanach

What is the punishment for adultery meted out in the Torah or Tanach? Is that punishment still being practiced in Israel? And how are the charges of adultery proved before meting out punishment? ...
3
votes
2answers
438 views

What is the absolute minimum length for peyos?

I have often heard that 1/4th of an inch is the minimum length of the hairs in the peyos area. For example, that is mentioned in an answer to a previous question: How to advise your barber My ...
7
votes
3answers
264 views

Which comes first, borei nefashot, or me'en shalosh?

Which berachah acharonah should one say first: borei nefashot, or me'en shalosh? (Please cite your sources.)
1
vote
1answer
134 views

Which US half-dollar coin should be used for Zecher Machatzis Hashekel?

It is customary on Taanis Esther to give a coin (or three coins each) valued at half the local currency's standard unit to tzedakah in commemoration of the mitzvah of Machatzis Hashekel (Rema 694:1). ...
3
votes
1answer
586 views

When are you allowed to touch your (newly married) wife?

At what point is a man allowed to touch a woman that he has just married. Can they touch after he has placed the ring on her finger and said "harei at..." before the 7 blessings are completed? Are ...
5
votes
1answer
198 views

Is it Asur to wear apparel with the Versace symbol on it?

The Versace symbol is a Medusa which stems from Greek mythology. Is there a problem with wearing their apparel with this symbol? Additionally since it Asur to learn Greek mythology (see Shulhan Aruch ...
8
votes
2answers
165 views

Obligation of community to support those who study Torah?

Is the community obligated to support financially those who study Torah all day long? Is one allowed to request such support from the community based on his choice to study full-day and not make a ...
9
votes
3answers
278 views

Permissibility of images of celestial bodies

There is precedent in halachah that one may not create images of celestial bodies such as the moon and stars; see here for background. This is derived in the Gemara from the pasuk "Do not make [images ...
9
votes
5answers
274 views

What's a floor?

There are certain laws pertaining to a floor. For example, if a Sefer Torah is dropped on the floor, one is supposed to do some sort of atonement (eg., most famously, fasting for 40 days). What is ...
6
votes
0answers
106 views

Thinking about Purim Torah in the bathroom

It is not permitted to think about Torah in the bathroom regularly, but what about Purim Torah, which is certainly not real Torah study, but still often refers to actual Torah? One might think that ...
3
votes
1answer
116 views

What are the parameters of Kiddush ha-shem?

Kiddush Hashem, the sanctification of the name of God, is often associated with choosing death rather than violating a core tenet of Judaism (this is known as dying "al kiddush Hashem"). However, more ...
1
vote
1answer
51 views

Source in the Aruch HaShulchan to not motzi (exempt) others with after-bracha on mezonot foods

The Aruch HaShulchan has an opinion on whether one person can motzi (exempt) a crowd with a bracha acharona (after-bracha) on mezonot foods. It is along the lines of it is better not to have one ...
7
votes
2answers
304 views

Do the laws of forgiveness apply equally to Jews forgiving non-Jews?

In the prayer introducing the bedtime shema we say we forgive everyone for everything, even in previous incarnations (gilgulim), and then say, "every Jew." I'm not sure I'm understanding it correctly, ...
3
votes
1answer
260 views

How does one own and operate a hotel on Shabbat?

Assume we're talking about a hotel that is open every day of the year. How does someone own and operate a hotel while still keeping the laws of Shabbat? Are there sources that discuss this? An ...
5
votes
1answer
203 views

Magazine not delivered - what are they responsible for?

If someone has a subscription to a Jewish weekly or magazine or newspaper (for example: Mishpacha, Binah, Ami, Jewish Press, Yated, Hamodia, etc.) and they are supposed to deliver on a specific day of ...
6
votes
3answers
399 views

Does a poor person have to give Maaser?

If someone can't finish the month financially, and has to borrow or take gifts in order to feed his family, does he still have to give Maaser from his salary?
3
votes
0answers
135 views

How to respond to a non-Jew who asks to shovel your snow on shabbos?

If a non-Jew asks if he may shovel your snow on shabbos what is the proper halachic response? Does it make a difference if he is asking to do this for pay (not previously arranged before shabbos)?
2
votes
0answers
265 views

Can I tuck tzitzit into the fabric square corners?

These are Neatzit, a tzitzit undershirt. In dealing with a child who fidgets and therefore picks at the tzitzit, such that at the end of the day, they are entirely undone, can I tuck the tzitzit ...
4
votes
1answer
81 views

How sharp a corner for Tzitzit?

A piece of clothing requires Tzitzit to be placed on it if it has four corners. The Sifrei (234) states: כסותך, פרט לטגא ולתובלא ולתיבלטירים לתקרקים לבורסים לבורדסים לפי שאינם מרובעים:‏ "Thy ...
10
votes
2answers
848 views

Origin of myth about the hole in the sheet?

There is a widespread myth (as far as I know it is a myth) that orthodox Jews must have marital relations through a hole in a sheet. What is the origin of this myth and does it have any actual basis ...
5
votes
0answers
66 views

How does deep snow affect carrying on Shabbos?

Thinking about the snow in Boston and the discussion at Shabbos 5a, if there was more than 10 tefakim (handbredths) of snow on the ground, would a reshus hayachad (private domain) extend from the soil ...
10
votes
1answer
302 views

Mandatory evacuation on Shabbat: what can and can't you do?

A major storm hit New England starting this past Friday. While people knew this was coming and precautions were already in place, apparently (according to a news article I read tonight) some areas ...
2
votes
0answers
90 views

What is the proper way to wrap a tallis?

Before donning a tallis one is supposed to wrap himself in it and make a blessing. I have seen many different ways of performing this wrapping. What is the correct way to wrap yourself in a tallis?
7
votes
2answers
277 views

Solar Powered Wrist-Watch on Shabbos

Is one allowed to go out with a solar powered watch on Shabbos (where they know the watch is in a situation where they will surely benefit from the power produced through the sun?) What could be the ...
1
vote
1answer
83 views

Waiting to reveal Kosher issue in order to get to the root of the problem

Suppose a Mashgiach realizes that a store is selling Treif meat, however is unsure as to the source of the problem. If he announces immediately that this store is selling something not Kosher he may ...
6
votes
0answers
110 views

Significance of the Kohen's hand gestures?

What is the significance of the shapes (windows?) created by the kohen during birkas cohanim? This question and the ensuant answers detail at least 3 opinions of the gesture, I would really appreciate ...
4
votes
1answer
161 views

May a Jew be a professional boxer?

Are there any halachic problems with a Jew being a professional boxer?
2
votes
2answers
334 views

Urgency of resuming relations after niddah

What is the urgency of a husband and wife resuming relations after the niddah period? Where is the line drawn between conflicts that warrant pushing off relations, and those that do not warrant it? ...
4
votes
1answer
144 views

Postmortem organ donation in halacha

I know we generally accord respect to our dead, which includes not mangling their bodies. On the other hand, obviously saving lives is more important than, well, almost anything, including respect for ...
9
votes
5answers
2k views

Is Extra virgin olive oil kosher by default?

I was given extra virgin olive oil as a gift from Italy (picture below), and I wanted to see if that type of olive oil is treated like fruits and vegetables, or does it needs to have certification on ...
3
votes
1answer
170 views

adoption and qualifying for being “officially” considered Jewish

My wife and I (no known Jewish heritage) are adopting an infant child. The child's birth-mother was herself adopted and raised as a Jew by Jewish parents. We do not know of any Jewish heritage ...
12
votes
3answers
536 views

Bitcoin and Halakha

What are the halakhot that apply to bitcoin? Is it halakhickly money? What even is the halakhic definition of money? Can bitcoin transactions be made over shabbat? That sort of thing.
7
votes
3answers
588 views

If my home is on fire on Shabbos or Yom Tov, what can I do?

G-d forbid, but let's say that my house catches fire either on Shabbos or a Yom Tov. Can I call 911 or must I find a non-Jewish neighbor to call? We have an eruv. Can I take my car keys, cell phone ...