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1answer
31 views

Non-lishmah parchment

I was learning the first two chapters of Rambam's Hilchot Megillah v'Chanukah before minchah last Shabbat. In one of the halachot of Ch. 2:9 the Rambam discusses that megillot need not be written on ...
3
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2answers
44 views

What were the Rambam's sources?

In the introduction to the Mishneh Torah, the Rambam indicates that his compilation of the entire Oral Torah is derived from a few key Jewish texts: ואין צריך לומר הגמרא עצמה הבבלית והירושלמית ...
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2answers
113 views

Does the existence of insurance affect end-of-life Halacha?

Consider the following case: A baby is born with severe congenital defects. The doctors say that if nothing is done to address them, the baby will die within days. They also say that there's a series ...
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0answers
24 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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1answer
31 views

Can one Shave the hair on his neck during Sefira?

During sfira (and the 3 weeks), I find that my neck gets extremely uncomfortable and itchy from not shaving (and not very presentable). Is it permissible to "clean up" or even out my beard by shaving ...
2
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2answers
126 views

Shabbat afternoon, when lounging on the couch, is it OK to wear sweatpants?

"Your Shabbat activities shall not be like your weekday activities". From this we learn that we should dress differently on Shabbat. Say you finished the meal and want to sit and read by the couch. ...
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2answers
33 views

Saying Hamapil after Alos Hashachar

If one was up all night and went to sleep after Alos Hashachar does one still say Hamapil?
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1answer
42 views

Is it a problem to eat animal leftovers

Is it true that there is a Jewish custom not to eat after animals (even if not mius issue (ie the person eating does not know)) ie if a rat ate a peace of a fruit I can't just cut off that part and ...
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4answers
85 views

Does a b'chor need to fast if he didn't partake in food from the siyum?

If a b'chor attended (or made) a siyum on taanis bechoros but did not partake of any food does he need to fast?
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2answers
48 views

Can you make chometz ink on Pesach?

My cousin would like to know about the permissibility of making ink on Pesach. The ink recipe includes flour, fruit juice, vinegar, and a little water. According to my cousin, it's not ראוי לאכילת ...
2
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1answer
30 views

Kidushin with food from someone else's banquet

I heard that a person can perform kidushin with the food of someone else's banquet, when he's been invited as a guest. Is this true? If so, why? (Do the owners of the banquet relinquish ownership ...
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27 views

Does the chametz sales contract need to be enforceable under secular law?

We go to great lengths to ensure that our pre-Pesach chametz sale is effective according to halacha. Thus, we effect the sale via various means of acquisition: kinyan kesef, kinyan sudar, kinyan agav ...
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1answer
34 views

Does baby toothpaste need a hashgacha?

According to Rav Yisrael Belsky (and based on the reasoning of Rav Yaakov Kaminetsky) toothpaste which contains non-kosher ingredients (such as animal-derived glycerin) is only kosher when the ...
2
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1answer
22 views

Halachot of burial vs. minhagim thereof

This answer gives a rough estimate that about 90 percent of hilchot kevura (laws of burial) are based on local minhag, rather than actual halacha. Taking this into account, the next logical conclusion ...
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0answers
17 views

Questions about the fence dividing a subdivided field

Mishna Bava Basra 7:4 says: האומר לחברו חצי שדי אני מוכר לך--משמין ביניהם, ונוטל חצי שדהו. חצייה בדרום אני מוכר לך--משמין ביניהם, ונוטל חצייה בדרום. ומקבל עליו מקום גדר, וחריץ ובן חריץ. וכמה ...
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1answer
79 views

Correcting one's father or one's rav when he is leyning

The Shulchan Arukh (YD 240:2) rules that one is never allowed to contradict one's father in his presence, and that when it comes to one's rav (or one's father if he is a Torah scholar; YD 242:1-2), ...
3
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3answers
85 views

Witnesses and the Ketubah

I heard from a chief rabbi of an Israeli city, who was officiating at a wedding I was at, that a Ketubah must be signed by two witnesses who are shomer mitzvos. What is the legal definition of this ...
3
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1answer
52 views

Holly Jolly Sukkos

An idol used by an idolater is assur b'hanaah (roughly, forbidden for use) and only loses that status if an idolater physically annuls it's "consecrated" status, e.g. by damaging it. Similarly, ...
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1answer
46 views

Vegan tekheileth

Does the oral tradition that identifies the hilazon as the source of tekheles necessarily indicate that one could not create the indigo-colored wool by other means? The gemara certainly indicates that ...
2
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1answer
60 views

Bracha on avocado / sashimi “boat”

A take-out place near where I work makes an "avocado boat". A whole avocado is peeled, pitted and cut in half. One half is placed on the bottom of a tray and filled with brown rice and assorted ...
4
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1answer
108 views

Is scaring someone allowed?

Is scaring or startling someone for no reason allowed? What if there is a reason, such as helping them get rid of the hiccups? By scaring I am referring to causing someone to be afraid, such as by ...
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0answers
49 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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0answers
46 views

Pursuing pluralist purpura

According to most rishonim (and the simplest read of the extant Talmudic texts) the tekhelet string is dyed in its entirety. However, the Rambam maintains that only half the string is dyed such that, ...
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1answer
172 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 ...
2
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2answers
47 views

Saying the Ribono Shel Olom after counting the Omer

If one is no longer counting the Omer with a Brocho can one still recite the Ribono Shel Olom prayer?
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1answer
47 views

GE Shabbos / Yom Tov mode on ovens - Machlokes

In this question How does Shabbos/Yom Tov mode on a stove work? it discusses how the Shabbos / Yom Tov mode works. I have recently heard that there are Rabbi's that do not allow using this mode. Does ...
5
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1answer
497 views

Criteria to be considered a gentile for the purposes of selling chametz?

I understand that for some tasks or jobs (particularly those relating to kashrut), Judaism ritually requires more than the criteria of matrilineal descent to qualify as a Jew. E.g., as I understand ...
5
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1answer
167 views

How to check blood sugar on Shabbos

Diabetes is a חולי שיש בו סכנה, an illness that poses a danger to life1. As such, everything necessary for caring for diabetes must be done on Shabbos, even if it includes איסורי תורה. (see Shulchan ...
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3answers
655 views

Edim Zomemim - Why Not Believe Them?

There is a concept of Edim Zomemim (Wikipedia has it translated as "Collusive Witnesses") (עדים זוממים). Basically, if two witnesses testify about someone, and then two other witnesses come and say ...
6
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1answer
42 views

If a chazzan has to repeat Shmoneh Esrei, can he use the chazarat hashatz for that?

Let's say a chazzan makes a mistake in his personal Shmoneh Esrei that he would have to repeat it for (e.g. missed yaaleh vyavoh). Can he use the chazarat hashatz as his required repetition, or must ...
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2answers
2k views

Why is it permissible to flush a toilet on Shabbat?

I have been reluctant to ask this question on this website because it sounds so ridiculous, but as Rabbi Hillel said in Avot 2:6 "one who is bashful cannot learn" so here goes... Why is it ...
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0answers
17 views

Is one liable for making a ruling around his teacher if the ruling is wrong?

There's a Halacha that one's not allowed to make a ruling around his teacher, and if one does he is liable to the death penalty at the hands of heaven. The two examples that I can think up from the ...
3
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2answers
139 views

Visiting sites previously used for idol worship

Given the prohibition on entering a place of idol worship (Rambam, Peirush ha-Mishnayos, Avodah Zarah 1:3), when, if ever, is one permitted to visit a historical site that has been used as a place of ...
12
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4answers
2k views

Basic laws, why is milk with meat not kosher?

I've recently read (again) the verse "לא תבשל גדי בחלב אמו", meaning, "Do not cook a young goat in its mother’s milk". How did anyone get from that, to "Don't eat meat with milk at all"? I've always ...
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0answers
36 views

Is one allowed to have a non-Jew cook for him on Shabbos?

Generally, there are ways to have a non-Jew do Melacha for a Jew (You don't tell him explicitly, the non-Jew does it for himself, etc.) Is there a way to get a non-Jew to cook for you on Shabbos ...
2
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0answers
27 views

What type of “rainbows” require a bracha?

Shulchan Arukh, Orach Chayyim 229:1 says: הרואה הקשת אומר בא"י אמ"ה זוכר הברית נאמן בבריתו וקיים במאמרו. ואסור להסתכל בו ביותר: One who sees the rainbow says, "Blessed are you, God our ...
6
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1answer
59 views

Automated Cooking Machine Programmed

I realize in most situations to have a factory line be "cooked by a Jew" an observant Jew would have to turn the oven on, stove on, or something along those lines. This morning I saw this article ...
4
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1answer
1k views

Live Vs. Recorded Music during the Omer

What are Halachik reasons that some Poskim allow recorded music during the Omer, but others forbid all music?
2
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1answer
49 views

Can one listen to music while he works to make the work less dull?

During the period of Sefirat Ha'Omer Jews are prohibited from listening to music. If one is working in an office and find it more pleasurable (or perhaps just less dull) to listen to music as he ...
3
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1answer
58 views

What is the shiur Hanaah?

How much Hanaah (physical benefit) must one have of things prohibited as an Issur Hanaah (things forbidden for benefit) like milk and meat, Kiley HaKerem (certain grape mixtures), or Avoda Zara ...
8
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2answers
209 views

If water accidentally spilled on my laining sheet and rubbed out the ink, is it still shaimos?

I have a computer program that I use to print the Tikkun, so that I can practice the parsha while at work (instead of shlepping the huge Tikkun book.) Today, I accidentally spilled water on the ...
7
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3answers
316 views

Saying 100 Berachoth in a day

What is the source for the idea that one should say 100 Berachoth in a day, and how serious of an obligation is this? Is it mandatory, is it laudatory, or is it merely a nice idea?
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1answer
98 views

Does jam have the halacha of duchka d'sakina?

The Chochmas Adom in 49:9 holds that all fruit have the halacha of duchka d'sakina, and that if you cut a fruit with a meat knife which was not definitively clean, you need to scrape off the outer ...
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1answer
34 views

How does a husband make a neder on his wife

How does a husband make a neder on his wife? From shulchan aruch, even ezer: 115.10 (not to talk to someone (maybe only men?)) אם השביע אשתו שלא תדבר עם פלוני ועברה ודברה עמו עוברת על דת היא ...
10
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1answer
122 views

Participating in a non-Kosher food co-op

A food cooperative is a member-owned food store. It is typically set up that in order to shop there at discount prices, each person can become a member if they agree to volunteer a certain amount of ...
1
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1answer
201 views

Shiluach HaKan and a possibly Tahor bird

Shuchan Aruch Yoreh Deah 292:1 rules that the commandment of shiluach hakan applies only to birds which are tahor, a kosher species. The meforshim explain that the Torah say tzipor which only refers ...
3
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2answers
50 views

If one has a heter to do something unusual, must one do so discreetly?

If one has a heter to do something unusual, must one do so discreetly? I am essentially asking whether marat ayin concerns are relevant to this type of situation. (As for "Why wouldn't they be?"--I ...
4
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0answers
41 views

Can one sell Chametz he doesn't know about?

If one sold his Chometz in his house for Pesach, and then found (on Pesach) some old Chometz food lying around, does he have to burn it? He probably didn't have it in mind during the sale, but on the ...
0
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1answer
58 views

Karet for eating chametz on Pesach - Where is the line drawn?

As I understand it, for something to count as a single act of eating, it must meet two requirements. The amount ingested must be the minimum of Kezayit. Some hold this to literally be the volume of ...
3
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0answers
43 views

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 ...