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 ...

learn more… | top users | synonyms (5)

6
votes
3answers
201 views

How is one allowed to live in Israel?

When Yehoshua came to Israel, he conquered it and divided it among the Jews. This land belongs to them and their descendants. When the Jews were exiled many years later and came back (by the 2nd Beis ...
0
votes
1answer
100 views

Early bird discounts and ribbis

Are early-bird discounts ribbis? For example, "buy before March 1, 10% off", or "tickets $12 in advance, $15 at the door" Inspired by http://myparnasa.com/collecting-interest-ribbis/
1
vote
0answers
65 views

Attending networking events under false pretenses

I've recently seen some events advertised for specific groups or for people who fit a certain description, and it got me wondering, would it be alright, from a Jewish perspective (Halachic, Hashkafic, ...
1
vote
0answers
86 views

Turn yourself in for a capital offense?

This question assumes that one should accept his punishment after being convicted of a capital offense. Should one turn himself in to (Jewish) authorities after committing an offense for which he ...
8
votes
1answer
93 views

Should someone who is falsely convicted by a relgious court attempt to avoid the death penalty?

This question discusses whether one may attempt to escape the death penalty imposed by a Beis Din for a capital offense. The answer to this question seemed to be that the person should not try to ...
8
votes
1answer
102 views

What defines “on this earth” from a halachic standpoint?

Rabbi Ben-Zion Firrer asked whether Torah Law must be observed in space, since Deuteronomy 12:1 says one should follow the Commandments "all of the days which you are alive on this earth." What ...
6
votes
4answers
212 views

Is it a mitzvah to escape the death penalty from a secular court?

This question addresses whether it is a mitzvah to attempt to escape the death penalty if it is imposed by a Jewish court. The answer to this question seemed to be that it is not a mitzvah to attempt ...
5
votes
0answers
61 views

Pidyon Shevuyim - when does it apply?

Does the Mitzva of Pidyon Shevuyim apply in a case where one is being held in prison for having committed a crime or only where a innocent person was captured for ransom? If it does apply to cases ...
7
votes
2answers
470 views

May a woman look at a man for pleasure?

It's ossur for a man to look at a woman for pleasure. Even to look at her small finger with the intention of having pleasure from it (See EH"E Siman 21 Sif 1.) Is there any prohibition for a woman to ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Is it appropriate for a Gentile to attend and/or participate in a Seder?

The context: last year, I saw this sign that announced the time and place that a Jewish Seder (probably Yom Kippur) would happen. I was definitely curious and considered going and at least observing ...
8
votes
1answer
188 views

Do Jews have an obligation to support the effort to free Jonathan Pollard?

I am not entirely clear on all of the particulars of the mitzvah of pidyon shivuyim - redeeming Jewish captives. Nor am I positive that someone jailed by a democratic goverment for breaking secular ...
5
votes
2answers
167 views

How to salt a chicken at home?

I'm Sara Gittel from the Shtetl and I just got back to my home with my freshly shechted chicken that I had brought to our local Shochet. I seem to have forgotten though how to salt it. Can please you ...
4
votes
1answer
117 views

Were condemned prisoners drugged prior to execution?

According to this unsubstantiated Wikipedia entry, criminals condemned to death by Beith Din were drugged and rendered senseless prior to being executed. Is this factually correct (either ...
4
votes
1answer
34 views

Southern Birkas Ha'ilanos

I've seen Saying Mashiv HaRuach in the Southern Hemisphere. Similarly, is Birkas Ha'ilanos (ברכת האילנות) said in Tishrei in the southern hemisphere? That's when the trees bloom.
6
votes
3answers
157 views

Meat right after Milk… make a new bracha?

Suppose someone is planning on having some dairy food just before a meat meal. May the person make a bracha to cover the entire dairy/meat meal, or must he finish his dairy, make a bracha achrona, and ...
6
votes
2answers
169 views

Does it matter through whom you sell your chometz?

I have seen online forms and received emails from many far-flung places offering to sell my chometz for me. I also have a competent Rabbi in my local shul who is willing to do it. No two of these ...
2
votes
1answer
145 views

Resuscitation of Aged Nursing Home Patients

Recently, there was a story about an 87-year-old woman who suffered a heart attack in a nursing home. The nursing home called 911 and the dispatcher begged the nurse to do CPR on the patient until the ...
5
votes
0answers
90 views

Is it ever permissible to break Shabbos in order to relieve someone of suffering?

Is it ever permissible to break Shabbos in order to relieve someone (a human or an animal) of suffering? I am talking about excruciating suffering, not merely discomfort, and I am not talking about ...
3
votes
1answer
212 views

Is it permissible to be mechalel Shabbos to save the life of an animal or pet?

Is it permissible to be mechalel Shabbos to save the life of an animal, such as a family pet? Could minchag, chumras, and/or purely Rabbinical prohibitions be relaxed in such a situation, and to what ...
7
votes
1answer
141 views

Is it permitted to use a thermochromic cup on Shabbos?

A novelty cup, see for example here, appears black when cold. When hot liquid is poured into it, the black changes to white and the previously concealed writing (underneath, so to speak) becomes ...
0
votes
1answer
178 views

Who is a Jew according the Tanach?

Does the Tanach give guidelines to Identify who is a Jew and who is not?
4
votes
1answer
229 views

Kayak or canoe on Shabbos?

Is it permissible to canoe or kayak on Shabbos for pleasure if a non-Jew puts the boat into the water and takes it out?
1
vote
1answer
103 views

What Bracha do we say on bread baked with evaporated mei peiros?

If one bakes bread made out of flour and pure fruit juice, it becomes pas haba bekisnin and the bracha is (at times) mezonos. What if one distilled fruit juice (to produce water) and baked bread out ...
14
votes
0answers
456 views

Can I make a mikvah using artificial rain?

If I have a mikva which needs filling, and there is no rain, can I use the following mechanism - I have a Mikva in a closed room. On top of this Mikva, there is a cooling system (let's say that this ...
5
votes
1answer
157 views

Is practical Kabbalah forbidden today?

Is it forbidden to practice "practical" kabbalah (kabbalah maasit) today? If so, why? If it is forbidden to practice is it also forbidden to study?
4
votes
1answer
225 views

Can my non-Jewish co-worker bring me coffee from the corner cafe?

Assuming coffee is Kosher, would it be alright if my non-Jewish co-worker brings me coffee on a trip to the corner cafe? May I assume that the co-worker indeed purchased a Kosher item and has not ...
0
votes
0answers
34 views

brit-milah for dead infant [duplicate]

Recent tragedy in NY, young haredi couple killed in auto accident. Wife pregnant with baby boy. Doctors delivered the baby but, tragically, he also didn't survive. Before burial, a brit milah was ...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

Wearing pieces from two different sets of tefillin

Tefillin are usually thought of as coming in sets, one for the hand (shel yad) and one for the head (shel rosh). But is there any reason two sets can't be mixed and matched? May one wear tefillin ...
2
votes
1answer
205 views

Tefillin with chipped paint

Is there a problem with wearing tefillin whose paint has started to chip off? Would such a situation require one to get the tefillin repainted? Can someone still be yotzei by tefillin whose paint is ...
2
votes
2answers
288 views

Is it allowed to make paintings of living creatures?

Among the Ten Commandments is: Thou shalt not make unto thee a graven image, nor any manner of likeness, of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the ...
2
votes
3answers
513 views

What Does Halacha Say About Women Wearing Veils?

I read here about certain Jewish sects prescribing face veil. Is there, in fact, a rule requiring or encouraging covering the faces of women in presence of unrelated men? If so, what is the source for ...
4
votes
1answer
41 views

Doing something in one breath

I am looking to make a list of halachot/minhagim that involve doing something in 1 breath so I can see if I can draw any connections between them. So far, I have 3 things: the shevarim-tru'ah (or at ...
2
votes
0answers
73 views

Borders of obligation when witnessing a robbery [closed]

Today I watched while a man walked into a pastry shop, took a large box of cookies and put it into his bag. He then walked out of the store and away, disregarding my stink eye on him. If I were to ...
7
votes
3answers
269 views

Why can't a mixed gender meal of 3 form a zimun?

In a group of two women and one man (or one woman and two men), why can they not have a zimun together? Is it because of different levels of obligation in bentching? If so, why is a woman ...
5
votes
2answers
140 views

Must one give maaser from virtual money?

If a person achieves a gain or a payment of a currency that that is purely virtual and does not have any physical counterpart (ie it is not associated with a financial institution) must one give ...
5
votes
1answer
55 views

Do reward tokens qualify halachically as money?

I give my children special slips of paper as a reward for good behavior (a "token economy"). They can collect these slips of paper and use them to "buy" rewards such as toys, treats, or fun ...
2
votes
0answers
133 views

What if a Goel HaDam (Blood Redeemer) accidentally kills his kinsman's accidental murderer - inside the latter's 'Ir Miklat (City of Refuge)?

Another question asks what happens if a someone accidentally kills someone else inside an 'Ir Miklat (City of Refuge) in which the victim and/or his family live, and whether he needs to move to ...
2
votes
2answers
186 views

What is the appropriate method for transporting a Torah scroll?

Is there a best practice for transporting a Torah scroll from one building, or one city, to another?
8
votes
1answer
206 views

What if Someone Accidentally Killed Someone in an Ir Miklat (City of Refuge)?

If someone kills a someone else through gross negligence in an Ir Miklat in which the victim and/or his relatives live, must he leave and seek refuge in another Ir Miklat? After all, surely the victim ...
4
votes
0answers
42 views

Davar Ha'avad on Chol HaMoed — Loss coming later

It says in SA OC Siman 537 that one is allowed to do a malacha on chol hamoed if it's a "davar ha'aved". That is to say if the person doesn't do the malacha now it will come to a loss ("hefsed".) ...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

Naming an orphan

In light of the recent story in the news of a baby born an orphan. :( Who names him (and performs the bris)? I assume the grandparents, but is there any tradition of which side has priority? (I am ...
3
votes
1answer
234 views

Can a born-Jew who converted out of Judaism be buried in an Orthodox Jewish cemetery?

We've discussed previously that halacha prohibits the burial of non-Jews in the same cemetery as Jews. But what about born-Jews who converted out? What about Jews who were simply atheists?
-3
votes
1answer
134 views

Who is a gentile? [closed]

What makes one gentile and what makes one Jew according to preferably Tanach , not restricting authoritative rabbanic sources.
7
votes
2answers
508 views

What to do with the Cross on the Chess King?

Many (perhaps most) Chess sets come with a King piece that has a cross on the top of it. Is there any problem with owning or using such a chess set? Should one break off the cross?
2
votes
1answer
306 views

What level of obligation is of kriat shema al hamita?

What is the level of obligation for krias shema al hamita (the recitation of Shema before going to bed)? Is it a mitzvah deoraisa, mitzvah derabanan, is it a minhag avoseinu byadeinu? Maybe it's ...
5
votes
2answers
254 views

My father-in-law was a Cohen. Are my children Cohanim?

I seem to recall that Kehuna passes from father to son. Does it pass through the mother as well? My father-in-law was a Cohen. That makes my wife Bat-Cohen, but what does it make my children? ...
3
votes
1answer
105 views

Can one use a year-round warming tray for Pesach? How?

Year-round, pans of food and foil-wrapped food are placed on an electric warming tray; the foods within are not kosher for Passover. What's the easiest way to permissibly use the tray for Passover? ...
4
votes
1answer
255 views

Have poskim written about partnership minyanim?

Are there any contemporary responsa regarding partnership minyanim, such as Shira Hadasha and Darkei Noam? Various rabbis have written against it (e.g., R. Student, R. Rothstein, R. Firmer) and it ...
3
votes
2answers
138 views

Asking a shaila where disclosure of classified information might be necessary

Orthodox Jews have taken on more and more responsible government positions and have been trusted with clearances to see highly sensitive classified materials. Many years ago I had such a job. It ...
3
votes
0answers
47 views

Should I only make one Berachah, or should I make one on each different food?

When I was in "Pirchei" boys' youth groups as a child, at snack time I was taught to make a "Mezonos" on my cake, "Shehakol" on my drink, and "Haetz" on my sliced fruit. Then, at the end, the group ...