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14
votes
4answers
3k views

Why don't Jews sacrifice animals anymore?

Correct me if I'm wrong, but Jews do not currently sacrifice animals like ancestors long ago. Why do Jews not currently sacrifice animals? Will there be a time when sacrificing returns once again? How ...
16
votes
2answers
489 views

Does a convert have a clean slate?

When a non-jew converts to Jusaism, must he still do teshuva from past sins, or does the "reborn" concept stretch far enough to consider him "sinless"?
4
votes
1answer
146 views

What to do with stolen objects which are impossible to return?

If an object was stolen in one's childhood or teenage years, without knowledge of the laws regarding stealing (or not caring), if this object is impossible to return, either because the person has ...
19
votes
3answers
351 views

Do I have to forgive a repeat offender?

If somebody has repeatedly wronged me (in the same way) in the past, am I obligated to keep forgiving him if he asks? On the one hand, maybe this time he finally is really doing teshuva; on the other ...
17
votes
3answers
611 views

Should one induce vomiting upon realizing s/he just ate non-kosher?

I've heard several stories of people who ate something, realized it was non-kosher, and therefore induced vomiting. Is this halachically required? Recommended? Does it accomplish anything? (If not, ...
12
votes
2answers
744 views

Is the Book of Life ever really sealed?

In davening and in greetings, we always refer to the "sealing" of the Book of Life. כתיבה וחתימה טובה1 we say; בראש השנה יכתבון וביום צום כיפורים יחתמון2 we pray. Wikipedia says: The High ...
7
votes
1answer
196 views

I “stole” an ice cube. What can I do for Kaparah?

Yesterday, I was stung by a bee while walking at the zoo. After icing down the sting for a while, I continued on my way. A few minutes later, however, the bee-sting began to hurt again. I happened ...
18
votes
6answers
282 views

how to survive if you are hanging on to some aveiros

Is there a strategy or saying / quotation (chasidish, chazal, etc.) that addresses what to do if there are some aveiros that one is not ready to give up on but wants to feel good about doing the other ...
9
votes
2answers
296 views

Teshuva and non-Jews?

The Rambam explains the basic requirements of doing teshuva and seeking forgiveness from another person: acknowledging the transgression, making amends, and seeking forgiveness (presumably publicly ...
9
votes
5answers
312 views

Are there unforgiveable sins?

If parents have committed atrocious sins against their children such as incest, physical abuse, drugging, etc. is it considered an unforgiveable sin?
6
votes
2answers
194 views

What are the implications of karet?

Does karet mean the soul will not ever enter the olam haba? Can teshuvah rectify the transgression which lead to the karet? Can that soul in another re-incarnation rectify the blemish of karet? By ...
8
votes
2answers
205 views

If a convert goes off the derekh, must he go to the mikvah again after he repents?

A female convert I know, who had stopped observing mitzvos for a few years, but then sought to return to the fold, was led to believe by someone that she would have to go again to the mikvah to ...
8
votes
1answer
272 views

If you use money for kaparos pre-yom kipur, is it fungible or must those bills go directly to tzedaka?

When we do Kaparos, we say "this money shall go to charity" -- so I put that dollar bill in the tzedaka box; is it okay if a few days from now I count what's in my tzedaka box, write a check for the ...
7
votes
1answer
96 views

Forgiveness on Rosh Chodesh

If Rosh Chodesh is a "Zeman Kapara" (time of atonement) as we say in the Mussaf prayers, why does it contain no selichot and no tachanunim? Why doesn't it (the day of Rosh Chodesh itself) resemble Yom ...
3
votes
1answer
65 views

How does one rectify money fraud done earlier in his life?

If someone was not observant and was involved in fraudulent business deals (selling free ebooks on ebay, or claiming used items are new). Later in life, if this person became an Observant Jew what ...
11
votes
2answers
1k views

How do you quit a pornography habit?

The Torah teaches that, if you're an unmarried man, watching pornography is harmful to your soul. See, for example, this article by Chabad rabbi Tzvi Freeman. (If you're married and need to watch ...
12
votes
2answers
274 views

Could someone who has committed a heinous crime convert to Judaism?

Is there any reason that someone who has committed horrible sins in the past (for example, mass murder) could not become a Jew? Assume, of course, that the sinner/criminal is willing to do teshuvah ...
7
votes
1answer
93 views

Teshuvah Negating a Negative Prophecy

There is a concept that while a positive prophecy must come to pass (at least when it is a national prophecy) a negative one can be retracted if the subjects to teshuvah (repent)? While there a number ...
2
votes
2answers
59 views

Teshuva for wasting seed

Is feeling remorse, praying for forgiveness and studying Torah enough to rectify the heavy sin of wasting seed ? I know that every sin has its own unique way of "correcting" or rectifying it. And ...
10
votes
1answer
125 views

When and why did we stop wearing sackcloth?

When and why did we stop wearing sackcloth in times of mourning and other times of distress (e.g., when fasting for rain)? (I presume sackcloth was quite uncomfortable.) Sackcloth is mentioned in ...
7
votes
3answers
82 views

Why couldn't the Jews do Teshuva by the incident of the spies?

After Hashem chastised the Jews for not wanting to go into Eretz Yisrael, and told them that they will have to die in the desert, the Jews seemed to have had a change of heart. A few even were willing ...
6
votes
2answers
72 views

Why by “Ut'shuva, Utefila UItzedaka” does it say “Zom, Kol, Mamon”?

On top of the words ut'shuvah utefila utzedakah1 in most machzorim it also says Zom, Kol, Mamon2. Why zom on teshuvah if the Rambam's formula for teshuva (Hl. Teshuva 2) no mention of fasting; why ...
5
votes
4answers
288 views

Why do we read Yona on Yom Kippur?

Why do we read Yona of all things on Yom Kippur? There are better tales of teshuvah that are more relevant to klall yisroel; why was this sefer, which deals exclusively with non-Jews doing teshuva, ...
3
votes
0answers
119 views

How can one make repentance for things he can't remember?

Say an unmarried Baal Teshuvah at the age of 30 decided to make repentance. A lot of time has gone by and he doesn't remember who he cheated, lied to, stole from, spoke loshen hara about, and so on. ...
3
votes
0answers
138 views

Elul Cheshbon HaNefesh

How does one make a Cheshbon HaNefesh during Elul. I'm aware of the technique given in Sefer Cheshbon HaNefesh, but that is intended (and set up as) as a year round exercise. To do something more ...
2
votes
1answer
118 views

1 shmuel 15: does Hashem “repent”?

The narrative of 1 Shmuel 15 has to do with Shaul forfeiting his kingship because of his mercy to Agag. The root nun-het-mem (I'm seeing it translated as "repent" or "relent") appears three times, ...