Questions about Jewish customs and traditions.

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-3
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1answer
92 views

Chassidic aversion to dual-sided implement-wearing

Disclaimer: This may sound like purim-torah-in-jest, but since Mi Yodeya has pasken'ed that only Adar Sheni is elegible for such, I (despite my personal minhag) post this question in all seriousness. ...
4
votes
0answers
59 views

Sitting when holding a Sefer Torah during Torah Reading

When there are two Sifrei Torah taken out on a particular Shabbas, the tradition in many shuls is to have the second safer Torah be held by by one of the congregants sitting down while the first one ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Is there a female equivalent of Z"l?

When a righteous woman passes away what is the appropriate term to use to indicate "in her blessed memory"?, i.e., is there a lady's alternative to z"l ?
4
votes
0answers
41 views

Are there any cases where Sephardim generally hold by the ReM"A?

The ReM"A famously wrote a gloss on the Shulchan Arukh called HaMapah where he pointed out places where the minhagim of the Ashkenazim (which he was familiar with) differed from the minhagim which ...
1
vote
0answers
25 views

Don't know name of a sick person's mother [duplicate]

I suspect that this is a fairly common problem, particularly in Orthodox schuls: one knows someone who is unwell, but comes the מי שברך לחולים, they don't know the choleh's mothers name. In these ...
10
votes
8answers
3k views

Why do Sephardic Jews dress in black and white?

Many observant sephardim in Israel, especially those in yeshivot, dress in black and white. Does anyone know how this happened? There is no tradition of Jews in North Africa or in the Middle East ...
3
votes
1answer
55 views

Source for “Hamakom” said at shiva and variations

What is the source for the text of hamakom? In Israel I noticed that they add some words that I never heard in the States (something like"vlo yosifo lidavek?od") , what is the source for them and why ...
3
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0answers
38 views

“Hamakom” after shiv'a

In my experience, for the most part, "‏המקום ינחם אתכם בתוך שאר אבלי ציון וירושלים" is said to a mourner specifically during shiv'a. However, I've heard some people say it after shiv'a, particularly ...
1
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0answers
785 views

Why do we wish someone “long life” on the occasion of the anniversary of the death of relative?

Why do english-speaking Orthodox Jews in the UK wish someone “long life” on the occasion of the anniversary of the death of relative? I can understand this wish directly after the death when I have ...
1
vote
8answers
709 views

Lubavitch and Daf Yomi

I know that most lubavitchers won't learn Daf Yomi. Is there any Sicha (please bring sources) which says if one should or shouldn't learn it?
0
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0answers
18 views

Is there a source for the custom of moving hands in a cicular motion after benching shabbos candleses and mo [duplicate]

Is there a source for moving hands in a circular motion after making the bracha on shabbos and/or yom tov candles
1
vote
2answers
64 views

In birkat kohanim, who calls out “kohanim”?

Should the chazan be the one to say kohanim or a member of the tzibbur? If you hold that it should be a member of the tzibbur due to Hefsek why would it be a Hefsek for the chazan to say kohanim?
2
votes
1answer
58 views

Sources for different turnings during Hagba

Some shuls turn have the magbia turn completely around while others have him turn first left then right (there may be still other minhagim). Why the difference, and what's the mekor?
16
votes
3answers
233 views

2 Sifrei Torah for close readings

This morning we read Parashat Mishpatim (Exodus 21:1 - 24:18) and the special reading of Parashat Shekalim (Exodus 30:11-16). The custom everywhere I have ever seen is to remove two Sifrei Torah from ...
0
votes
1answer
38 views

Shabbos Zemiros source for Al Ahavosicha?

My family sings a zemer called al ahavosich, which i have never seen in a standard bencher/zmiros book. Does anyone know where this zemer comes from?
3
votes
2answers
76 views

Significance of the various Shabbos dishes

Many people (especialy chassidim) are very particular to have certain foods on Shabbos. Fish, soup, cholent, liver, eggs and onions, kugel, and I'm sure I'm missing a few others. What is/are the ...
2
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1answer
48 views

Halacha of hair disposal

Are there any traditions or halachic restrictions regarding the proper disposal of human hair (similar to with regard to nails or human remains)? Related: According to Halacha, does one have to ...
6
votes
4answers
11k views

Rules for Cutting Nails

My question about nail-cutting is whether each of the following is halacha, minhag, or old-wives' tales. Not cutting both fingernails and toenails on the same day. Not cutting nails at night (is ...
3
votes
3answers
116 views

What is the source of the expression מנהג ישראל תורה?

The earliest source I found is the Ramban who says in Pesachim 7b: ועוד נ"ל שסדר ברכות הללו של שחרית ברכות שבח הן על נוהג העולם ואפי' לא שמע שכוי מברך עליו וכן בכולן, וכן נהגו ומנהג ישראל תורה ...
33
votes
10answers
4k views
13
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4answers
300 views

At what point do we reject a minhag?

I was learning the halachos of berachos on things that are ground up, and it seemed pretty clear to me that the blessing on chocolate should be ha'etz. I found discussion in some more contemporary ...
12
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7answers
516 views

Challah Friday Night

When you make Hamotzi on Shabbos you use the top Challah. However, on Friday night you use the bottom. Therefore, so as not to pass over the Mitzvah you hold the bottom one closer. My question is why ...
5
votes
1answer
109 views

Honey on Hallah for Newlyweds?

A friend stumped me with this question: What is the earliest reference to the custom of having newlyweds dip their hallah in honey? My guess is that it's an extension from the custom of honey on Rosh ...
11
votes
2answers
162 views

Why kiss the tefillin by “poseach es yadecha”?

As mentioned in this question, there is a fairly widespread custom to kiss the tefillin at certain times during Shacharis, among them the parts of קריאת שמע that mention tefillin. One of these times ...
1
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0answers
82 views

Gerer Chassidishe Minhagim

For Gerer Chassidim (Polish Chassidishe Dynasty), what minhagim do they follow concerning these things: Tefillin Do they use Ashkenazi, Sephardic, or nusach Ari? Do they wind the retzuos inward or ...
3
votes
1answer
95 views

language of betrothal at wedding

Traditionally, before a husband betroths his wife he says, "Harei at mekudeshet li btabaat zo kdat moshe vyisrael." Is this language necessary in halacha or standardized by tradition (minhag)? If not ...
2
votes
0answers
48 views

Why only beautify two peyoth?

The explanation I have always been given for long, curled peyoth among those that have the minhag, is that it is for beautifying the misswah of peyoth. However, there are seven peyoth, only two of ...
7
votes
2answers
74 views

Why is the Pitum HaKetores said after Musaf?

The Tur (O.C. 132) quotes from Siddur Rav Amram that one should say the Parsha of Ketores every day after davening, and the Rama there writes that his custom is to do so only on Shabbos and Yom Tov. ...
10
votes
3answers
205 views

When there are four aveilim (mourners), Is it better to have one minyan of 40 people or 4 minyonim of ten each?

Today I was in a shul where there were four parallel mincha services because four mourners wanted to lead the services. I thought there was a principle of ברב עם הדרת מלך? What sources are there that ...
7
votes
0answers
153 views

Father being Matir Neder for himself: does it affect the family?

If a father is Matir Neder on a minhag (gebroktz, let's say) for himself for a valid reason, does that include his whole family? Are they now also permitted to eat gebroktz because that is now the ...
6
votes
2answers
145 views

Reason for various positioning of “An'im Zemirot”

I am aware of 3 different customs of when to say An'im Zemirot on Shabbat: Beginning of Shacharit, Between Bircot Hashachar and Psukei D'Zimrah After Chazarat Hashat"z of Shacharit End of Musaph ...
0
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0answers
41 views

Who organized the different trope tunes used in Ashkenazic Scripture reading?

Most Ashkenazic Scripture reading that I have heard uses a different trope tune for each of these readings: Shabbat, Yom Tov and weekday Torah reading Haftarah reading High Holiday Torah reading ...
11
votes
3answers
132 views

Origin of Unveiling

Often, the family of the deceased will have an unveiling service for the presentation of the matzevah.* What is the origin of this custom? *Source: Goldin, Hyman. Hamadrikh. Hebrew Publishing ...
1
vote
0answers
49 views

May one wear a jacket or coat over a tallit gadol during shacharit?

May one wear a jacket or coat over a tallit gadol during shacharit - assuming one wears a tallit gadol daily? The reason I ask is because usually the tallit gadol is the outer most garment. I don't ...
8
votes
2answers
575 views

Changing minhag about tallit gadol

I first became involved with a non-orthodox congregation where it was customary for everyone over Bar Mitzvah age to wear a tallit gadol. However, I understand that it is an Ashkenazi minhag not to ...
2
votes
2answers
235 views

Source listing all Jewish wedding customs?

Is there a comprehensive source that lists all various orthodox wedding customs (mitzvah tantz, mezinkah, etc.)?
4
votes
1answer
144 views

(Tefach) Wide Gartel

Some use a very wide gartel. A friend of mine mentioned an inyan (Judaism-sourced idea) that the gartel should be wider than one tefach. Can someone source this inyan that the gartel should be (more ...
2
votes
1answer
66 views

Not using Electricity as a Minhag

This answer asserts that R' Auerbach held that not using electricity on Shabbat is a minhag. However, assuming that this ruling dates to the 1930s (which is what I have heard in the past), everyday ...
8
votes
1answer
117 views

Why is it considered respectful to capitalize G-d and its derivatives/pronouns?

I recognize that in English proper nouns are supposed to be capitalized, especially in the case where a proper noun is also a common noun (e.g. the mall vs. the Mall), but only when referring to G-d ...
0
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0answers
22 views

Being Jewish and what makes one a Jew [duplicate]

My son Aaron did a DNA test and it came back with 1% European Jewish. Does this make us Jewish? I know on my Mum's side we are spanish so could this be Sephadic Jewish and what does this mean? I have ...
1
vote
0answers
109 views

Rulings that Sephardim should stand to put on hand-t'filin

Rabbi Shimon Eider's book, Student Edition of Halachos of Tefillin, dates to 1985. In it (section Ⅲ D 7), he writes: Some Poskim hold that one should sit while putting on the Shel Yad ...
2
votes
1answer
147 views

Are you required to wear a kippah during very strong winds?

If I am walking and the wind is very strong - the kippah flies off almost as soon as I put it on and I don't have a bobby pin with me - do I have an obligation to keep putting it on and securing it ...
3
votes
1answer
113 views

What are the rules about nudity of the small children?

Until what age is it permitted to see one's own daughter nude? 3? 12? What about prayers - how does one behave if during Amidah, or any other prayer or brochos, she is in front, with naked butt? Or ...
2
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2answers
62 views

Is there a practice of palming face by “shin” shape?

A friend of mine from B7 said that there's a custom to palm one's face during Kriyat Shma with shin-shaped hand. It looks like a Cohanim's hand shape, but it forms a shin-like shape. Who's custom is ...
-1
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2answers
62 views

Is there any shul where you have to takes off you shoes before entering the beit knesset?

Are there any particular Jewish communities where the congregants remove their shoes before entering the Beit Kneset?
3
votes
1answer
96 views

Tu B'Shvat Seder: At night or day?

The Pri Etz Hadar, as incorporated in the Chemdas Yamim, tells us of the idea of making a Tu B'Shvat Seder. It seems that most people (such as here, here and here) assume the Seder is meant to take ...
1
vote
1answer
44 views

Sephardic communities that stand to put on hand-t'filin

Rabbi Shimon Eider's book, Student Edition of Halachos of Tefillin, dates to 1985. In it (section Ⅲ D 7), he writes: Some Poskim hold that one should sit while putting on the Shel Yad ...
6
votes
2answers
253 views

Tu B'shvat Seder

Where did the idea of doing a Seder on Tu b'Shvat come from? Why a Seder, not just the eating of fruit? Why do we call it a Seder if there is no formalized way of doing it?
6
votes
2answers
76 views

When was the Yad first used to read the Torah?

When was the tradition of using the yad started? How long has this practice been in use, please?
3
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0answers
61 views

Learning the entire night of one's 20th Birthday? [closed]

What is the source for this? Is there an inyan to do this? I'm quite new and as you can probably tell, I'm turning 20 in little under a week from now. Not sure what I should really do...