Relating to Angels in Judaism.

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428 views

What is the source for the tradition that the philtrum is formed by an angel before birth?

Physiological context: The philtrum is the dip or groove in the middle of the upper lip below the nose (link). It is a feature of most mammals, thought to draw water from the mouth to the nose to keep ...
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8answers
1k views

Why are angelic icons not prominent in Judaism?

I learned that the song Shalom Aleichem is all about welcoming the Shabbat angels, and clearly angels are celebrated in Judaism. However I've noticed that images of angels are not very widespread in ...
13
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4answers
521 views

What does “to confuse the Satan” mean and why does it work?

There are several things we don't do in order "to confuse the Satan", like not blowing Shofar on Erev Rosh Hashana. How does it help? Does Satan not realize that Rosh Hashana didn't pass yet? He ...
10
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5answers
236 views

Why do the angels need a ladder?

We know the angels in Yaakov's dream go down and up a ladder but why do they need the ladder? Angels appear on earth and with Hashem throughout the Bible without a ladder.
10
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4answers
364 views

Jewish concept of angels

Judaism does not believe in the free will of angels. What is the scriptural evidence for that and since when has such belief been held within the Jewish community?
9
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189 views

Free will a prerequisite for punishment?

I read that the angel Metat was subjected to 60 pulsei de-nura (Aramaic: פולסא דנורא "lashes of fire"). I have been taught that angels do not have free will. Did this angel act from free will or did ...
9
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3answers
196 views

Do angels have jealousy?

In a famous Midrash in Shab. 87a-b, the angels object to the Torah being given to humans, until Moshe proves that it is only relevant to humans because of their nature. In one example, he asks ...
9
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3answers
207 views

What is the etymology of סמאל?

I've heard that סמאל (Samael, a "bad" angel) is related to the word שמאל (left). Is there any basis for this, and are there any other explanations for his name? The Hebrew Wikipedia claims that it is ...
8
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3answers
510 views

What does the angel Gavriel represent?

In trying to come up with an answer to this question, I became aware that the angel Gavriel plays a common role in several aggados and midrashim. Not only in the midrash with Moshe and the burning ...
8
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4answers
111 views

What is the need for angels?

Why did G-d create angels to assign them specific tasks (Bava Metzia 86b)? Since G-d is omnipotent, what is the need for angels -- why doesn't He perform these tasks directly?
7
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4answers
970 views

What do Jews think angels look like?

I'm a Christian and I've seen and been constantly exposed to our common view of angels. That said I like Matisyahu who draws from a different culture based in Judaism rather than Christianity. In his ...
7
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3answers
182 views

Why is the Evil Inclination Called a “Fool”?

Koheles (4:13), (as explained by the Midrash Rabba) describes the Yetzer Hara (Evil Inclination) as "A king, old, and a fool". It explains: "...ולמה קורא אותו כסיל? שהוא מלמד לאדם דרך רעה...". ...
7
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2answers
119 views

How to understand the Medrash that Isaac's eyes were weakened by the tears of the angels?

Rashi's second interpretation of Braishis 27 (1) (based on the Medrash Rabbah 65 (10)) is that Isaac's eyes were weakened by the tears of the angels at the Akeidah. Rashi speaking about the angels ...
6
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2answers
136 views

Go in Peace - why are we sending the Angels away

On Friday night we welcome the angels by singing Shalom Aleichem the question is why do we tell them: צֵאתְכֶם לְשָׁלוֹם מַלְאֲכֵי הַשָּׁלוֹם מַלְאָכֵי עֶלְיוֹן Essentially sending them away ...
6
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5answers
799 views

What do angels do in heaven?

What is it that angels do in heaven?
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2answers
780 views

Angel in the womb for women?

The Talmud (Niddah 30b) teaches us that when a child is in the womb, an angel comes and teaches it the entire Torah, which he subsequently forgets. The simple reading of the Gemara gives no reason to ...
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3answers
269 views

why did the angel fight with yaakov?

Why did hashem allow the angel to even fight with yaakov in the first place?
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1answer
162 views

Magid Mesharim: How is it that the angel knew Aramaic?

There is a book called "magid mesharim" written by Maran Bet Yosef in Aramaic through the exact words of an angel. My issue with this is that we learned from some Gemaras (Shabbat 12b is one) that ...
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2answers
552 views

How were Achiman, Sheshai and Talmai “Sons of Giants”?

In Bamidbar 13:22, the Torah tells us that the spies saw Achiman, Sheshai, and Talmai, the sons of Giants. Rashi tells us they were the descendants of Shamchazai and Azael, angels who fell from heaven ...
6
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4answers
70 views

Why believe angels' showing Aaron dead after being fooled about Moses?

When Moses didn't come down from Sinai, the Jews requested a replacement leader, explaining (Exodus 32:1) that this Moses man who lifted us out of the land of Egypt — we don't know what has ...
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5answers
466 views

Arabic and Angels

The angels in Heaven are said to not be able to understand Aramaic because it represents a deviation from the Hebrew language. My question is: Do they understand the Arabic language (as is very close ...
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3answers
132 views

How can angels “give permission” to each other?

As I understood it, angels have no free will and strictly do those things G-d instructs them to do. But in the brachas preceding krias Shema, we say that the angels "all accept upon themselves the ...
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1answer
83 views

Yaakov blessed the angel?

Vayishlach, perek 32, describes Yaakov's struggle with a "man" who many, including targum Yonasan (:25, :27, :29), explain is actually an angel. In pasuk 27 (as explained by Yonasan), Yaakov seeks a ...
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1answer
83 views

If no-one went to synagogue on Friday night, do the people at home sing “Sholom Aleichem”?

The Ashkenazi custom is to sing “Sholom Aleichem” when returning home on Friday night from the synagogue. The reason is related to the ministering angels who accompany a person home on Friday night ...
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1answer
141 views

Do you have to listen to angels?

Does one now (or ever in the past) have to listen to the instructions of an angel? If so, would that include listening if the angel told you to violate a Torah commandment (either temporarily or ...
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Why did the angels object to the Torah being given to Moshe – what did the angels think?

The well-known Gemoro Shabbos 88b reports the angels protesting against HKB”H giving the Torah to Israel. HKB”H tells Moshe to answer the angels and Moshe shows that the Torah is only applicable to ...
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4answers
285 views

Shalom Aleichem to angels?

The zemer "Shalom Aleichem" is obviously addressed to angels. The Tur (OC Siman 3) gives a short text to says before entering the bathroom: התכבדו מכובדים משרתי עליון, etc. (also obviously addressed ...
4
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3answers
151 views

Do angels sing?

After reading the last Tosfos on Chullin 91b ( http://hebrewbooks.org/shas.aspx?mesechta=31&daf=91b&format=text) I wondered if angels sing? Is there an explicit source in Tanach that they ...
4
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2answers
236 views

HaMalach HaGoel Osi

Why does Yakov ask the malach (angel) (actually it sounds more like a statement of fact - "he will...") who protected him from evil to bless Ephraim and Menashe? Also, do we find that this actually ...
4
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1answer
178 views

Tuesday and Friday nights

Bavli P'sachim 112:2 has a story of an angel of destruction who would work daily (see Rashash) until asked to quit. When she requested some time to work, the rabbi she was talking with allowed her ...
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1answer
98 views

Asking From Angels Borchuni Lshalom

Jews usaly do not ask angels for help as per the RAMBAM. He writes (in Sanhedrin, Perek 11) in the fifth Yesod ha'Emunah the prohibition against serving Avodah Zarah -- that not only should a person ...
3
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1answer
265 views

Story of Rabbi Who Burned Out His Eyes

I once heard a story about a rabbi who was given a test by God, in which the Satan was sent in the form of a beautiful woman to entice him. He would not look at the Satan, and when pressed, he had one ...
3
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2answers
204 views

Is the angel named uriel or oriel

There is a significant difference, where one means: my fire is of god's and the other means: my light is of god's. Since the spelling is the same in Hebrew, it is not apparent from some sources what ...
3
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1answer
85 views

What is wrong with asking the angels for a blessing in Shalom Aleichem?

In the artscroll zemiros book they mention that the Gra and Rav Emden either did not say or modified the shabbat song Shalom Aleichem because there is a stanza which requests that the angels bless us. ...
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1answer
167 views

Is free will limited to humans?

Do other beings besides humans have free will? Perhaps animals have free will? What about angels? Does the status of other types of beings' freedom of will affect us in any way?
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1answer
46 views

What is the proper intent to have when we say “Kadosh, Kadosh, Kadosh?”

One of the benefits of communal prayer is the ability to say K'dusha in the repetition of the Amidah. We also say "Kadosh, Kadosh, Kadosh" (Is 6) as a preparatory component of Shma, and in U'Va ...
3
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1answer
40 views

Why does Yaakov say, “ראיתי אלוקים פנים אל פנים”?

In Bereishit 32:31, Yaakov says, "ראיתי אלוקים פנים אל–פנים" after his encounter with the angel. Most commentators, such as Rashi, interpret that when Yaakov says this, he really meant "I have seen ...
2
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1answer
133 views

Babies in the field Midrash

What is the source for the Midrash that says that in Egypt some babies were put into fields and saved by Malachim who looked like their fathers? Also, what is the context in which the Midrash is ...
2
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2answers
85 views

Can you explain the beginning of Pirkei D'Rebbi Eliezer chapter 4?

At the beginning of the 4th chapter of Pirkei D'Rebbi Eliezer, it states [my own translation]: On the second day God created the heavens (rakiyah), the angels and the fire of flesh and blood ...
2
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1answer
176 views

Getting dressed in the bathroom

I heard an interesting, but confusing, chumrah observed by Rabbi Pesach Levi of Lakewood. He said one should get dressed in one's bathroom because one should not appear naked in front of one's ...
2
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1answer
73 views

Why “מלאכי השרת” in only the first stanza of “Shalom Alechem”?

The first stanza of the popular Friday-night song "שלום עליכם" calls angels "מלאכי השלום מלאכי השרת מלאכי עליון" (or, in other versions, just "מלאכי השרת מלאכי עליון"). The other stanzas call them ...
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2answers
133 views

What was Moshe Rabbeinus argument against the angels?

Breishis 18:8 says that Avraham served the angels milk and meat together. Rashi in the name of the Medrash says that it only seemed like they were eating. Medrash Shocher Tov Tehilim 8 says that one ...
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2answers
125 views

Sources for free will of angels

I want to define free-will for this question as a moral right and wrong decision, not an arbitrary decision or a true/false decision. I am familiar with sources that say that angels do not have free ...
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2answers
89 views

Is there a Malach for Am Yisrael?

I had a very bizarre dream where at the end I was in a room singing then having a heated discussion with someone who claimed to be the malach of 'Am Yisrael'. Is there such a thing as a Malach for Am ...
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1answer
216 views

Do any Jews, ancient or modern, hold that Michael the Arch-angel is the coming messiah?

I am currently studying the origin of an uncommon Christian belief that the angel Michael mentioned in the Jewish Bible (Daniel 12:1) is the same person as Jesus. It is becoming a frustrating mystery ...
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1answer
290 views

Why can we not say the names of certain angels aloud?

I have found in certain kabbalistic documents that contain names of angels there is an instruction not to say the names of those angels aloud - example with names in parenthesis. I realize we are not ...
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1answer
48 views

Why did the angels not go straight to S'dom?

It says in Bereishis 18,16 “and the men arose from there and they looked upon S’dom, and Avraham went with them to escort them”. This is followed by several posukim dealing with the dialogue between ...
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1answer
108 views

Are Jews greater than angels?

In a spiritual sense which is greater - or if you prefer, has more kedusha - angels or Jews and why? Please explain and cite explicit sources, not inferences.
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1answer
99 views

Saying names of angels

I've heard you shouldn't say the names of angels, except for the four that surround us at night. What's the source and reason for this? Is it halacha or kaballah?
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1answer
58 views

Importance of Gavriel in Judaism

What is the status or rank or position or importance of Gavriel as an Angel in Tanach or Oral Law and what causes it to be at that position or rank?