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17
votes
4answers
552 views

Does a Food Mashgiach have to Sacrifice his Life?

Suppose a Mashgiach of a food establishment is threatened to "keep quiet" about some of the questionable behaviors [for purposes of the question, consider both actual non-kosher, and possibly ...
14
votes
3answers
589 views

Is it better to kill 1 person or let 5 die?

I was recently reading about the Trolley Problem A trolley is running out of control down a track. In its path are five people who have been tied to the track by a mad philosopher. Fortunately, ...
11
votes
5answers
521 views

Is the observance of Jewish law/tradition “all or nothing”?

Sometimes my job gets in the way of my observance of Jewish holidays. I often need to work on Saturdays or late on Fridays, inhibiting my ability to attend synagogue on Shabbat. Sometimes I am ...
11
votes
2answers
165 views

Preference to Kohanim in repeating situations

Based on this question and answer, it seems that the obligation to honor the kohein is when everyone has equal rights, the kohein gets first pick, but not everything. For instance, if a host serves a ...
10
votes
6answers
836 views

Wearing a kippa at work

If one has a job where his employer informs him that if he wears a kippa he will be fired, does he have to wear a kippa?
10
votes
4answers
180 views

Are there halachos which specify who is qualified for tzedakah?

Following a very interesting and animated discussion at the Shabbos table this past Friday night, I wanted to delve more into the halachos of who is an oni? I understand very clearly from the Neviim ...
10
votes
1answer
175 views

Supporting new charities

There are myriad charities out there. If a community has multiple Shuls, schools, Mikvaoth, food pantries, and גמ"חs, and new entities open up fulfilling the same role(s), and the new entities' ...
9
votes
1answer
130 views

Why is Leah last in the order of the matriarchs?

When we list the Matriarchs in prayers (such as the Amidah in the version including the matriarchs, or in the traditional blessing for one's daughters on Friday night), we say them in the order: ...
9
votes
3answers
248 views

Eating before Davening with a Minyan, or Davening at home and not eating till later?

You wake up in the morning and are famished. In order to have strength to go to Shul you need to eat prior to Davening. However, if you were to Daven without a Minyan at home you would not have to eat ...
8
votes
2answers
378 views

What are the sources of Jewish law?

What are the sources for the Jewish law or "Halacha"? Is there any priority among these sources? In common practice, when a law is described, is the citation given form the main sources or derived ...
8
votes
2answers
124 views

Extent of financial consideration before having children

Are there financial considerations that a couple must take before having a child or children i.e. should one have children 'at any cost' or is this not a consideration. If yes, would these financial ...
7
votes
4answers
492 views

hat and jacket during davening

I wear a hat to davening normally. Is it better to daven with a minyan without a hat or without a minyan with a hat?
7
votes
5answers
221 views

Does one need to perform a delayed brit milah at the first possible time?

If a baby is sick on the 8th day, the brit is pushed off until the baby is healthy. Once the mohel and doctor determine that the baby is healthy, does the brit need to be performed right away (on that ...
7
votes
3answers
270 views

Which comes first, borei nefashot, or me'en shalosh?

Which berachah acharonah should one say first: borei nefashot, or me'en shalosh? (Please cite your sources.)
7
votes
1answer
149 views

Why remove tfilin before talis?

I've heard why we put on the talis before tfilin (tadir or maylin bakodesh), but why take it off in the reverse order?
7
votes
1answer
148 views

What can I skip after Amida in Shacharit?

I have very little time for shacharit, because I have to go to work. The minyan in the city where I live is very late. So I try to daven everything before the Amida and the Amida itself with a Tzibur, ...
7
votes
1answer
148 views

Is Chayecha Kodmin a Chiyuv or a right

If one is presented with a case of either save himself or his friend, he is permitted to save himself. Does he have to? I saw this thread which set my mind going, are the usual airplane guidelines ...
6
votes
3answers
155 views

Where to affix a second Mezuzah?

I have two beautiful Mezuzot in my possession. It seems obvious that I affix one on the doorpost of our new home's front entrance. What would be the most appropriate room inside the home to affix ...
6
votes
4answers
253 views

Priority of Davening with a Minyan

Is it better to Daven [pray] with a earlier large minyan or better to wait to daven later with a much smaller minyan where I will be needed as the tenth?
6
votes
1answer
75 views

Would a replacement kohen gadol be anointed on yom kippur?

Here is what I know: When a kohen gadol dies we replace him. In fact we've got a replacement kohen gadol waiting in the wings on yom kippur just in case Any kohen who becomes kohen gadol gets ...
6
votes
3answers
125 views

Barchu or Kavana

If you are late to Maariv and miss barchu and you normally daven slowly should you... Daven faster, even if it means saying the words with little to no Kavana so that you can say Barchu at the end. ...
6
votes
2answers
126 views

Zerizin Makdimin or Brov Am

If you have a choice of doing a Mitzva earlier and being Mekayem Zerizin Makdimin or doing it later and at that point there would be more people doing the Mitzva together and thus you would gain Brov ...
6
votes
1answer
122 views

Chanuka lighting: BeZman (at the best time) or Pirsumei Nissa (publicization of the miracle)?

Is it better to light candles at bezman, or later when there will be more pirsumei nissa? I find 4:30 (approx candlelighting time in NYC this year) to be too early to catch the regular "rush hour." Is ...
6
votes
1answer
153 views

Kohain First questions

1)Is there a Din that a Kohain must be allowed to cut you online in a supermarket because of "Vkidashto"? 2)Do they go first when it comes to Davening when there are two Chiyuvim? 3)When you learn ...
5
votes
3answers
124 views

Does attending a regular shiur take precedence over leading the prayers on a Yahrzeit?

It is a widespread custom to lead the prayers (daven from the amud) on the anniversary of a parent’s death (yahrzeit). Suppose that if I do this for a service on the yahrzeit of a parent it will ...
5
votes
2answers
83 views

Too fast or no minyan?

Suppose the only minyan available for someone to attend is one which moves far too fast for him. Even with arriving early and starting ahead of time, he only has time to say a fraction of psukei ...
5
votes
3answers
320 views

If it's your minhag to daven Hanetz, do you do so even without a minyan?

A friend once told me that if one's minhag is to daven with Hanetz (i.e., starting the Amida prayer at sunrise), and if there's no Hanetz minyan nearby, you should still daven Hanetz, even without a ...
5
votes
2answers
191 views

Newcomers Overwhelmed by Myriad Halachas

Some people, especially Baal Teshuvas who drastically change their lives to being fully observant may find it somewhat overwhelming to observe the minimum halachas in being an orthodox jew (such as ...
5
votes
1answer
114 views

Why do we say ha-motzi before al achilat matzah instead of after?

I was taught that it's important not to make an interruption between a b'racha and its fulfillment, such that we don't say anything between making motzi and eating the bread. To me the b'racha is ...
5
votes
2answers
164 views

Why don't some do yibum today, l'chatchilah?

According to the Mishna (Bechorot 1:7) the reason not to perform yibum nowadays is people don't have intention l'shem mitzva when performing yibum. Firstly I would like to know if there are any other ...
5
votes
2answers
302 views

Davening not in Hebrew

Isn't it better to daven in your first language rather than davening in Hebrew and only knowing part of what you're sayig?
5
votes
1answer
101 views

Is a Ger first or almost last for assistance?

The Pri Megadim in OC Siman 156 Ashel Avraham Sif-Katan 2 (it's a long piece) cites from the Rambam in Hilchos De'as Perek 6 Halacha 4 that the Mitzvah of Ahavas HaGer (loving a convert) is really 2 ...
5
votes
2answers
192 views

Is it better to daven in a Minyan throughout the week or on Shabbos?

Imagine someone had two job offers: You would have to live more than walking distance away from Shul. However, you could drive to Shul during the week (let's say that it's too expensive to live ...
4
votes
5answers
246 views

If you can only choose one which way should you learn, bekiyus or beiyun?

If you can only choose one, which way should you learn, bekiyus (learning quickly on a more superficial level to cover ground) or beiyun (slower, more in depth study)? As a reminder, answers on ...
4
votes
2answers
265 views

What is the Greatest Mitzvah?

What is the greatest Mitzvah a man can do?
4
votes
2answers
82 views

Becoming Bar Mitzva on Chanuka

A boy becomes Bar Mitzva on one of the nights of Chanuka. If he lights the Menorah at the preferred time (appx 15-20 minutes after Shkia to the best of my knowledge) it is not Tzeis HaKochavim yet. ...
4
votes
2answers
663 views

What's the best thing to use for Marror?

What's the best thing to use for Marror (bitter herbs) for Seder, taking into account Halacha, ease, availability, etc?
4
votes
2answers
112 views

Blessing on a food or a drink first?

If someone has in front of them a food and drink that the bracha (blessing) of both is shehakol which one should he make a blessing on first? Assuming that he doesn't prefer one over the other. Is ...
4
votes
1answer
148 views

Onah and Sukkos?

Does the Mitzvah of sleeping in the Sukkah supersede the mitzvah of Onah? (one would think not, as it is a chov to someone else.) If not, is one supposed to fulfill mitzvas Onah and then retire to the ...
4
votes
1answer
67 views

Melacha vs breaking a fast on Yom Kippur

If a person is in a life threatening situation and can be saved by either doing a melacha or eating/drinking on Yom Kippur, what should he do?
4
votes
1answer
51 views

Consistency vs. Forgiveness

Both as a responsible parent and as a Jew, I want to be consistent with my children. As a parent, in order to teach them that the rules are the rules and give them a sense of predictability to rely ...
4
votes
0answers
115 views

Parent dying overseas - visit now or attend funeral?

A person lives far away from a dying parent and cannot afford more than one visit. What do the halachic sources say about when they should visit? Should they visit the parent immediately and miss the ...
3
votes
5answers
1k views

Priorities: Mincha Ketana vs Mincha Gedola

Which timing of mincha is more important: mincha gedolah or mincha ketana? Why?
3
votes
1answer
114 views

When to light the Shamash when lighting Menorah?

When lighting my Menora, saying the relevant Brachot, and lighting the Shamash, what order should I follow? I think the best way is: 1. Shamash 2. Brachot 3. Chanukah-Lights But someone said, the ...
3
votes
3answers
109 views

Seeking sources about the necessity for finding a מנין

I am looking for sources about the necessity for finding a מנין. More specifically, whether or not one has to always be in close range of a מנין, or if he can intentionally put himself in a position ...
3
votes
1answer
215 views

boreh pri hagafen and hamotzi during the week

On Shabbat and holidays, we say kiddush before hamotzi (I think because hamotzi would normally cover the wine? Is that right?). During the week, what is the proper procedure? Is it to say hagafen and ...
3
votes
3answers
221 views

Which is better, lying or saying lashon hara?

Inspired by Shmeryl's frequenting of McDonalds, I have a similar question about lashon hara. Let's say Shmeryl is coming to visit you from out-of-town on shabbat, and has no problem with doing so ...
3
votes
1answer
210 views

Variant on: Is it better to Daven “too early” with a Minyan, or to Daven alone at the right time?

In many communities there is a regular weekday morning Minyan and the "working-person's" Minyan, which technically Davens too early according to most opinions, but which is better than nothing, ...
3
votes
1answer
83 views

Arrived late for maariv. How to daven?

I arrived late for the last minyan for Maariv. Should I A) Pray the amida with the community and lose the proximity of "geula" to "tefilla" but gain the "tefilla betzibbur" or B) Pray in order, ...
3
votes
1answer
72 views

Why are the Shabbat additions to Pesukei D'zimra added before the every-day parts?

In the Pesukei D'zimra of Shabbat, why are the Shabbat-specific portions added before most of the every-day portions? Shouldn't they be said after according to the rule: Tadir V'she'eino Tadir, Tadir ...