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5
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3answers
510 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 (20th anniversary edition) (Rodale, 2010) includes a section about insomnia, which includes a long list of home ...
2
votes
1answer
47 views

What is the difference in definition for 3 terms used regarding “leavened” (chametz)?

The Torah uses 3 terms that all appear to mean "leavened food" (from English definitions that I could find): חמץ and שאור are mentioned in Exodus 12:15: שִׁבְעַ֤ת יָמִים֙ מַצּ֣וֹת תֹּאכֵ֔לוּ אַ֚ךְ ...
5
votes
2answers
184 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?
3
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0answers
40 views

Throwing out bagged bread vs. feeding to ducks?

There is a prohibition of throwing out bread in larger quantities than a k'zayit (olive-size) if it is still fit for human consumption (see Orach Chayim 180:3; Regarding if it is no longer fit for ...
2
votes
1answer
85 views

Violating a cancelable oath?

If someone made an oath "I'm not going to eat bread for thirty days" and wants to "cancel" it, he goes to three people and tells them "I didn't know that it would be so hard". They say "OK, it's ...
0
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1answer
66 views

Correcting a Rebbe who is learning during חזרת הש"ץ

Is it better to tell my Rebbe that he can't learn during חזרת הש"ץ or is it better to respect him.
3
votes
1answer
70 views

When it is stated that one is forbidden to pray or render halachic decisions while drunk, does this include other drugs like marijuana?

The Shulchan Aruch in Yoreh De'ah 242:13 says one is forbidden to render halachic decisions when drunk (Shichur), does this include other "intoxicants" such as marijuana, etc.? Also, in Orach Chaim ...
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0answers
33 views

Does burial of shmita produce count as disposal or rotting?

Say I mistakenly bought a bag of Israeli produce during shmita, which besides having trumos and ma'aser issues, was likely harvested during shmita. Considering this, I would like to discard these ...
1
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0answers
36 views

Earliest moment for interrupted wedding to be considered binding?

A Jewish marriage takes place but the ceremony is, Hashem forbid, interrupted by a terrorist's bullet. One of the couple dies. How far must the ceremony have gone for the bereaved to be considered a ...
1
vote
2answers
187 views

Does repentance remove effects of prior sexual assault?

Within the Laws of marriage in the Religious world, if someone was to be sexually abused or assaulted, however has done and experience properly the 5 stages of appropriate and acceptable Teshuvah does ...
2
votes
1answer
99 views

Rambam, Shkiah, and Tzet HaKokhavim

In the dispute between the Geonim and Rabbenu Tam over the definition of nightfall, I have seen the Rambam claimed by either side - each claiming that in the Mishneh Torah he held like them. My ...
7
votes
1answer
66 views

Should the same laining procedure be followed for errors outside the aliyah as the ones during the aliyah?

According to Shulchan Aruch O.C. 143:4 (Mechaber), if someone finds a mistake in the Torah durng the aliyah he is reading, he should stop, take out another Torah, finish the aliyah, and have the oleh ...
3
votes
1answer
78 views

Poisoning my own food?

I live in an apartment with roommates, I'm trying to determine who is stealing my food. I use the word stealing because each of us had have our own separate and color-coded cabinets, and I also label ...
5
votes
2answers
248 views

Mezuzah on deck door

The mezuzah is supposed to be placed on the right side of the entrance when going into the house. Yet I have seen a number of people who place the mezuzah of their door going to the deck in the back ...
0
votes
1answer
103 views

Is it considered “marit ayin” if boys and girls stroll together on Shabbat?

I have heard of a number of yeshivot that have a strict rule regarding boys and girls being with each other. Their rule is "simple" - outside of your own family members, it should be never for any ...
3
votes
1answer
45 views

Can a shaliach assemble your mishloach manot for you?

I know that a shaliach (messenger) can deliver your mishloach manot. But can the shaliach also assemble it for you (under instruction for what to put in), and you'll still fulfill the mitzvah? Here, ...
8
votes
1answer
107 views

Liability of substitute

If someone has an appointment, and arranges for a babysitter to come to watch his/her children while he/she goes to the appointment, and the babysitter doesn't show up, so the parent misses the ...
7
votes
1answer
129 views

Hefsek in being yotzei besamim in havdallah

This past motzei Shabbos, in the Shul where I davened, there were a number of young men who were lining up to be included in the communal havdallah done at the end of Maariv. The person making ...
5
votes
3answers
193 views

Which way to face when davening at the Kotel

It seems that at the Kotel, the general practice is to daven directly facing the wall. (Speaking from experience.) However, i thought we were supposed to face the kodesh hakodashim, which has a ...
2
votes
1answer
36 views

IF many poor people ask at once, must one give tzedaka to each one

The Sefer Hamitzvot (chafetz chaim) writes: "whoever sees a poor person asking [for tzedaka] and ignores him and does not give him tzedaka - he transgresses this biblical commandment..." ...
0
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2answers
20 views

Source for saying a bracha rishona after eating?

I've heard that there are those who hold that saying a bracha rishona (ie the bracha usually said before eating) after you have eaten a food is effectual. Where might I find a source that says that? ...
3
votes
1answer
206 views

Water left unopened

According to this article from the Kof-K one is obligated in covering water bottles, but we dont practice today as snakes are not common, but what if i lived in a desert like city, like Phoenix ...
0
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2answers
60 views

Sounding the Shofar during the Omer?

Can someone blow a Shofar during the Omer at times when playing instruments is prohibited (i.e. after Passover and before Lag b'Omer, according the predominant custom)?
1
vote
1answer
15 views

Opposite vs. closer regarding the amah-by-amah

The gemara in Bava Batra 60b records a takkana d'rabanan (Rabbinic enactment) to leave a square cubit unfinished in one's house in commemoration of the destruction of the Temple (codified in the ...
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votes
2answers
1k views

Music on lag baomer

Are you allowed to listen to music the night of lag baomer or do you have to wait untill the day?
4
votes
1answer
104 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
73 views

Buying pasul arba minim or non-arba minim for your small child

The Shulchan Aruch in siman 657 says that a child which knows how to shake the lulav properly, his father is obligated to buy a lulav for him (because of chinuch). The Beur Halacha d"h keday ...
7
votes
3answers
493 views

Does electronic cigarette juice require a hechsher?

Does electronic cigarette "juice" need to be kosher (require a hechsher)? Does it matter what flavor the juice is?
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vote
0answers
57 views

Can one rely on a gentile's uncertain food description regarding brachot?

Let's say you have a dish in front of you but you're not certain what its ingredients are. You ask a Gentile who is familiar, and he says, "I've seen something like this before and it's usually made ...
3
votes
0answers
59 views

Halachically, do Israeli citizens own their land?

According to Israeli law, the government owns nearly all of the land, except for some privately owned land from Mandatory periods. Citizens get to rent it from the government. This is commonly known ...
10
votes
3answers
246 views

If a gentile undergoes a non-orthodox conversion, and proceeds to keep the Sabbath, is he sinning?

Firstly, I am an ignorant gentile and am new to contributing to Stack Exchange, so I apologise in advance for any mistakes or missteps. It is my understanding that a gentile who keeps certain ...
4
votes
2answers
148 views

Studying the Written Torah in English

In terms of fulfilling the Mitzvah of Talmud Torah, when studying the Written Torah, must one learn the translation in tandem with the Hebrew words? Or is it sufficient to understand the meaning, ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

Shaving on Friday when Lag Ba'omer falls out on a Sunday

This year (2011) Lag Ba'omer falls out on a Sunday. I've heard from a few people that the halacha is that you can shave (and take a haircut) on the Friday beforehand l'kavod Shabbos. Are there any ...
3
votes
2answers
91 views

Speaking lashon hara about someone who does not mind

Is it permitted to say negative things about someone when the person spoken about says that he does not mind and does not care if people speak negatively about him?
4
votes
1answer
394 views

Eating a fish underwater

Maseches Chullin 27b that fish do not need shechita but they do need asifa (gathering). Does that mean that it is assur to eat a fish underwater (it's dead -to exclude bal tishaktzu problem) without ...
1
vote
0answers
30 views

Dyo lesafrut - mutar beficha or not

I came across a thread today on the International Sta"m Forum. In the comments, some of the sofrim who frequent the site were debating whether sofer's ink, or dyo, need be mutar beficha (permitted to ...
5
votes
1answer
114 views

Electronic card readers to enter buildings on Shabbat?

As a student, I've noticed that practically all of the dormitories in my university require residents to tap their student cards to a sensor before they are allowed to enter their building. (Moreover, ...
1
vote
2answers
53 views

Do Strawberries acquired from a supermarket require washing to be kosher?

This question comes from someone who's interested in preparing and selling food items with strawberries as a main ingredient. In a scenario where many strawberries are being used at once, would each ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Is whisky matured in a sherry cask Kosher?

Is whisky matured in a sherry cask Kosher? I know there is a Machlokes about this. Who holds what?
8
votes
1answer
119 views

Binding answers for Halachic questions

I recall learning that one is not allowed to "venue shop" by asking a series of rabbis for a practical halachic ruling and following the opinion you like. I was taught that one should ask and be bound ...
0
votes
2answers
153 views

Would a violated woman be allowed to remain married to her Cohen husband?

As a continuation from my last question, Would looking away help a Cohen stay Married to his wife?, would a raped woman be allowed to live with her Cohen husband? Would there be room to allow them to ...
4
votes
3answers
160 views

Study of Written Law Without Comprehension

What are the earliest sources that confirm or contradict the assertion that recitation of Torah Shebiksav fulfills the obligation to study Torah even without understanding of the words? Preferred: ...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

Words of Torah Must Be Enunciated

Several Acharonim (e.g. Pnei Yeshoshua to Brachos 15b) write that words of Torah must be enunciated during study. Which Rishonim agree to this view. (I am asking specifically about those who hold ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Davening on Plane Zmanim

How do you know when to daven Shachris on a plane?
3
votes
1answer
91 views

Where is “no Tachanun” on Pessach Sheni documented? [duplicate]

In almost every Siddur I have checked - as well as all the Luach's around, it says not to say Tachnun on Pessach Sheini - 14 Iyar. Yet I cannot find a source for it, nor in Shulchan Aruch neither in ...
3
votes
1answer
81 views

Rules Regarding Sewing a Talit for my Bar Mitzvah son

I want to sew a Talit for my Bar Mitzvah son. Please help me with the rules/Mitzvah. I need to understand the do's and don'ts of making a talit. I heard you can't have shaatnaz in the talit, but many ...
1
vote
0answers
41 views

Roasting unsalted meat

What are the customs in the process of making meat edible by removing the blood through roasting? Specifically after the roasting do I need to wash the meat to eat it (not to cook it afterwards)? ...
5
votes
1answer
57 views

What do we do when chalitza is impossible?

The Mishna at the end of the 14th perek of יבמות gives a few examples where יבום is required and חליצה cannot be done. For example, if there are two brothers, one a חירש (deaf-mute) and one a פיקח ...
2
votes
1answer
41 views

Is Exodus 20:4 a command about icons or idols?

When The Lord says, "Do not make for yourself an image," does he mean an image for the purpose of worship, that is an idol, or any image whatsoever, such as the depiction of a narrative or a ...
1
vote
0answers
43 views

Words of Torah Need Not Be Enunciated

Ritva (commentary to Brachos 15b) writes that Torah need not be enunciated out loud during study. Which other Rishonim espouse this view? I am not asking regarding side issues such as verbal ...