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Can you say shechechiyanu on something you might return?

Say you bought a nice suit. Can you say shechechiyanu on it if there's a possibility that you might return it. If you already did say shechichiyanu on it, are you allowed to return it?
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73 views

Does anyone allow one to get married the night after Pesach Sheni?

Rivivos Efraim Volume 2 page 266 in discussing whether one may eat roasted meat on the evening after Pesach Sheni concludes as follows. ופוק חזי מאי עמא דבר, שעושים חתונות מפוארות באותו לילה ...
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Are there communities that follow the Rambam?

At one point, many Sefardic communities followed the Mishneh Torah. As time went on, it seems that the sefardim accepted the Beit Yosef. Besides for Yemenites, were there any communities that, until ...
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33 views

Badikas Chamatz in courtyards of cities today

Shulchan Aruch HaRav says: קרקעית החצר אין צריך בדיקה לפי שעורבין ושאר עופות מצויין שם והם אוכלים כל חמץ שנופל ואפילו אם ידוע לו שיש שם בחצר ודאי חמץ אין צריך ליטלו משם בשעת בדיקת ליל י"ד ואפילו ...
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64 views

Can you take and post pictures of people online without their permission?

Realizing that there is some concern with having one's picture taken in the first place; according to those who allow pictures of people to be taken, is there any halachic reason which would prevent ...
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52 views

List of Halachot LiMosheh MiSinai

Is there a comprehensive list of things in the Talmud that are "halachot limosheh misinai"- laws that were passed down from Moshe through the generations? An example of such is tefilin needing to be ...
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53 views

How long can יוצא ונכנס be?

In regards to kosher supervision, what is the largest single gap that a mashgiach can leave the premise and still be considered practicing יוצא ונכנס?
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58 views

Heter to decorate the shul in a humorous way in Adar?

I am bias here, I was raised to treat a beit k'neset (shul) with utmost respect; not to use the sanctuary as a shortcut, avoid mundane discussions there etc. I now live in a community which festively ...
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41 views

Designating an item before shabbos for others- Snow Cones!

If I designate an item before Shabbos for an acceptable purpose, it can become not muktza for me. Can another person, who I did not have in mind when I made my initial declaration the use that item? ...
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230 views

Are sex change operations prohibited for non-Jews?

In very specific situations some halachic decisors have permitted sex change operations, such as for infants born with some types of genital anomalies. However, the consensus seems to be that they ...
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128 views

Are gold (or silver) jewelry charms considered avodah zarah?

Many years ago, I started to buy small gold charms specifically with Jewish symbols for my mother who added them to a necklace, much like gold charm bracelets circa 50 years ago. Among them were tiny ...
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87 views

Why is there seemingly such a disconnect between the Geonim and the Rishonim?

It seems that there was a disconnect or upheaval of some kind between the times of the Geonim and the times of the Rishonim and the hakhamim that these two eras contained. Shittoth regarding tefila, ...
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43 views

Can a store owner avoid hashavas avaidah?

If a Jewish person owns a store where the majority of patrons are Jewish (let's say a pizza store) can he post a sign which says all lost items will be discarded after 30 days, or something similar, ...
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92 views

Slide Rule on Shabbos/Yom Tov

May a slide rule (mechanical device before calculators) can be used on Shabbos for Gemara calculations?
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115 views

Referring to Gentile Priest as “Father”

Is it permissible to either refer to or address a gentile priest as "Father XXXXXXXXX"? What alternatives might there be?
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70 views

Are adjoining Sukkoth ok?

Is there any reason* neighbors could not build adjoining Sukkoth? What I mean is, suppose there were four** row houses, which shared an open patio/courtyard with four** row houses behind them, and ...
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58 views

Bracha change on Tevilas Keilim

Yoreh Deah 120:3 one who Toivels a vessel should make the Bracha "Al Tevilas Keli". However if one Toivels two or more vessels they should make the Bracha "Al Tevilas Keilim". Aruch HaShulchan Yoreh ...
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Minor placing the Parshios of the Tefilin into the Batim

Orach Chaim 39:2 - Biur Halacha seems to say that a minor can not do any part of making of the Tefilin. However a reading of the Mishna Berura 10 seems to say that a minor can work on producing the ...
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114 views

Listening to Recorded Music *Privately* During the 3 Weeks

Do any of the poskim who rule that recorded music is assur during Sefirah/3 weeks distinguish between listening to recorded music in a public setting and listening to recorded music by oneself in ...
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62 views

Can an Israeli work in public on second-day yomtov if there are non-observant Jews around?

Shulchan Aruch says an Israeli Jew who is just visiting non-Israel should not work in public on the second day of Yomtov so long as he is in "yishuv" (and commentaries explain "yishuv yisrael") -- a ...
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Washing oneself on Erev Shabbos with hot water

The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chaim 260) writes that there is a mitzvah to wash one's body on Erev Shabbos with hot water, as seen in Tractate Shabbos 25b. The Biur Halacha writes that one can argue about ...
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119 views

After-death care of a non-Jewish relative

If a Jew has been entrusted with the after-death care of a non-Jewish relative, what should be done? Specifically, if the non-Jewish relative requested to be cremated after death, can or should a Jew ...
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43 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".) ...
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160 views

Opened “please-take!” food items in a non-Jewish workplace

Is it alright to consume unsupervised food items at work that are open and available to anyone, assuming the items were initially known to be Kosher1 and there's no evidence of tampering? Items that ...
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226 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 ...
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121 views

Scheduling a USPS Pickup for Shabbos

So it turns out that the USPS has a feature where you can ask them to come and pickup a package. So you go online to their site, enter your information, choose a date for the pickup, and tell them ...
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136 views

Writing HaShem's actual name in English

Is it permissible to write out HaShem's actual name (the "Tetragrammaton") in English (or any other, non-Semitic, language)? Does it make a difference how you spell it, ie., whether you write it in ...
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69 views

Are you yotzei by lighting candles through a grama?

Does one fulfill the mitzvah of lighting candles (sabbath or chanukah) if done by a grama (indirect action)? Example
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64 views

How were the “seven good men of the city” appointed?

How were the “seven good men of the city” שבעה טובי העיר appointed? Was there an election and if so who could be candidates?
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What if the Gabbai Tzedakah runs away?

Suppose a Gabbai Tzedakah passes our good friend Reuven while making his collection rounds. Reuven reaches into his pocket for his wallet and removes the money he wants to donate. By the time Reuven ...
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Frozen clothes during the Nine Days

Recently, some have advocated freezing clothing, particularly blue jeans, instead of washing them to conserve water. Assuming this works to some extent, can it be done during the Nine Days? Can I ...
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134 views

Kevias Ittim Vs. the General Mitzva of Talmud Torah

The basic mitzva of learning Torah can be fulfilled minimally with Kerias Shema. This comes from a Gemara in Menachos (99b) which goes through several conflicting interpretations of the verse in ...
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an adult's responding to a child's sneeze with a blessing, or vice versa

The halacha states (Mishnah Brurah 230: 7) that one should respond to a sneeze with a blessing and the person who sneezed and was blessed should return with a blessing in kind. this is not done if you ...
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562 views

Using a non-kosher toaster oven

What is the permissible way to use a non-kosher toaster oven? My thought process was that, when cooking milk in a meat oven, the covering of the dish and the rack makes it acceptable. Would covering ...
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118 views

Trash as Chometz

Is the trash in my trash cans that must stay on my property during Passover still considered under my ownership?
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34 views

Are there any responsa that encourage or require maintaining health insurance?

Are there any responsa in the literature that either encourage or require people to maintain health insurance, perhaps as a fulfillment of the obligation to guard one's health, or in line with any ...
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52 views

Is there Ribis in America?

Rav Moshe Feinstein, z"l, is lenient with regard to allowing the loaning of money to a corporation because he maintains that the prohibition of ribis (usury) only applies where there is a shibud haguf ...
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Not passing up a mitzvah: putting away laundry at a parent's behest: closest pile first?

My kid asked: I know there's a general rule of en maavirin al hamtizvos, we don't pass over a mitzva. For example, in mishnayos Yoma, the kohanim don't pass over the nearest blood basin to put ...
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Making a kinyan on hefker items on Shabbat

Is it possible to take possession (make a kinyan) of items which are hefker (ownerless) on Shabbat? I know that business transactions are prohibited, but i'm unsure whether this applies to any ...
3
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43 views

Can someone blaspheme to save their life?

As is well known, one is to die rather than murder a Jew, perform adultery and the like, or worship an idol (Sanhedrin 74a). Is blasphemy (i.e. denying one's dedication to the Torah) permissible to ...
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Tu Bishvat Seder Permissibility

Given that this answer notes that the particular ritual of the Tu Bishvat Seder is likely Sabbatean in origin (although the practice of eating fruit in general on Tu Bishvat dates from the 16th ...
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56 views

Can an induction hob be kashered on Pesach?

Induction cooking involves an alternating magnetic field in a coil underneath a smooth glass/pyrex surface. This alternating field induces eddy currents in an iron pot placed on the hob. In turn, ...
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why kiddushin and nisu'in are done in the same day (no big space)

Why are kiddushin and nisu'in done on the same day, with no big space in between? I understand from the mishna: מסכת כתובות ה,ב = נותנים לבתולה שנים עשר חודש משיתבע לה הבעל, לפרנס את עצמה; כשם ...
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What if two communities had two different Shabbat days?

Imagine this: One community, A, keeps Shabbat on what we identify as Saturday. However, another community, B, for whatever reason, actually keeps Shabbat on what we identify as Sunday. These two ...
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Is “recycling” Mishloach Manot halachically acceptable?

Inevitably, this happens to me almost every year. I give mishloa'ch manot to Shmer'l. Shmer'l take some of my mishloa'ch manot and gives it to Chatzkel. Chatzkel, not knowing that the huge ...
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“Sending” mishloach manot by serving them

The obligation on Purim is to "send" 2 foods to another person. The Mishna Brurah (Hilchot Megillah 695:4) says that one may exchange se'udah food with a neighbor and is yotzei (21) even if (and I ...
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72 views

Is it ok to Text After Kriyat Shema al Hamita?

Is it okay to text after saying kriyat shema al hamita? You're not supposed to talk afterward, as it says: Tremble and sin not. Reflect in your hearts while on your beds, and be utterly silent. ...
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38 views

Is it better to skip Asher Yotzar, or to say it without washing?

Ideally, one would always do ritual handwashing (netilas yadayim) and say Asher Yotzar after going to the bathroom. (Source: Shulchan Aruch OC 4:18 for handwashing; here for asher yatzar) However, in ...
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Davening behind someone who doesn't wait for me to finish

If I have davened behind someone who davens faster than me, and he has consistently taken his three steps without waiting for me to finish (which he should not do), and seemingly does not mind taking ...
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How do we know that non-hechshered food is not kilayim or kilay hakerem?

"Kilayim" and "kilay hakerem" are two classes of prohibitions on eating from "mixed" fields (in which more than one type of crop is planted.) "Kilayim," as I understand it, specifically refers to the ...