Questions seeking sources for a given practice or idea, or seeking the location of a specific source.

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8
votes
3answers
3k views

Rainbow as a bad omen

There is a popular idea that seeing a rainbow is a bad sign, as if the world is deserving of a deluge (c"v) and the only reason Hashem does not do so is because of His promise. Is there any source for ...
-1
votes
1answer
45 views
2
votes
1answer
41 views

The Medrash and Gemara about Hoshana Rabbah

I read on shirat devorah the following: 1) The Midrash tells us that G‑d told Abraham: “If atonement is not granted to your children on Rosh Hashanah, I will grant it on Yom Kippur; if they do not ...
11
votes
1answer
334 views

Rishonim saying Ester took place during the second bayis

Elsewhere on this site, avi cited sources to the effect that, contrary to the Bavli (M'gila), the events recounted in the book of Ester took place after the second bes hamikdash was built. Do any ...
7
votes
1answer
60 views

Hakhel: Source for leader of generation replacing king

As this is (or would be) a hakhel year I was doing some reading up on Hakhel and came across the following statement in a chabad.org article: If there is no king – as was the case in the hundreds ...
1
vote
0answers
54 views

Sources that permit applying sunscreen on shabbos?

Since it's put on to prevent medical conditions, are there recognized halachic authorities who say that applying sunscreen (a cream NOT lotion) is muttar (permitted) on shabbos?
1
vote
0answers
64 views

Are there any sources that say to wash hands with soap after the bathroom?

Are there any sources in Rabbinic literature that mention washing hands with soap after using the bathroom? I.e that just using the cup (נטילת ידים) isn't sufficient. An explicit statement would be ...
3
votes
2answers
82 views

What is the source for the idea that doing some good thing 3 times constitutes a vow?

What is the source for the idea that doing some good thing 3 times constitutes a vow? I looked through Hilkhot Sevuot and Nedarim, and in the Entziklopedia Talmudit under Hazaka, and I could find no ...
3
votes
1answer
59 views

Chovos HaLevavos on changing ourselves through tefillah

I saw somewhere that Chovos HaLevavos writes, "The purpose of tefillah is not to change Hashem's mind but rather to change ourselves. It is to bring us to the realization that our fate is completely ...
0
votes
1answer
132 views

What is the source for the role of the Levi in the Torah service?

Torah and Talmud discuss the role of the Levi in the temple. There seems to be no source for the role of the Levi (going up to the Torah second, after the Cohen) in today's Torah service. Where did ...
1
vote
1answer
57 views

What do the letters of Teshuvah stand for?

I found online that Teshuvah stands for: תמים תהיה עם ה' אלקיך שויתי ה' לנגדי תמיד ואהבת לרעך כמוך בכל דרכיך דעהו הצנע לכת עם אלוהיך Is there any source for this?
3
votes
0answers
18 views

Where are we commanded to light candles Fri night? [duplicate]

The bracha for lighting candles Friday night is "who has sanctified us with his commandments and commanded us to light the lamp of Shabbat." What is the source for the commandment? While we are on ...
1
vote
0answers
37 views

Sources on printing Shem הוי”ה in Siddurim

This post discusses the fading custom of writing the Tetragrammaton in siddurim with the י–י digraph, rather than the increasingly common full spelling, which I will not put here, as I suspect that ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

When was the term “Next World” (עולם הבא) first used in Jewish literature

In modern Jewish literature and folklore the "next world" (עולם הבא) is mentioned multiple times. In contrast, it is not mentioned (AFAIK) at all in the Torah. So where/when did this start?
6
votes
4answers
578 views

Source that we don't know how God judges people

I wrote in this answer, "We can't possibly know how God judges people after they die." I was making the point that the way we live our lives should be according to halacha but we can't possibly know ...
0
votes
0answers
31 views

Tallit katan & gadol

What is the source of the requirement to wear a large tallit (where a small tallit is being worn)? Thank you Ketivah v’chatima tovah
2
votes
0answers
29 views

Hataras Nederim Erev Rosh HaShanah

What is the earliest makor (source) for making hataras nederim erev rosh hashanah in front of 3 people with a long nusach? It appears to be a rather "late" minhag. What is the first source? Also is it ...
1
vote
1answer
40 views

Did R. Shlomo Yosef Zevin provide sources for his stories?

In a letter to R' Shlomo Yosef Zevin, the Lubavitcher Rebbe asked Rabbi Zevin to include sources for the stories he compiled in his Sipurei Chassidim. You can see parts of the letter (printed in ...
5
votes
2answers
119 views

Does Judaism require burial of the dead?

Does Judaism require burial of the dead? What Biblical passages mandate that? Can grave sites be reused after some time (e.g. 200 years) ? I am asking this because the practice of burying the dead in ...
3
votes
1answer
73 views

Source for Groom's Immersion in Ritualarium (mikveh)

What are the earliest sources referencing the custom of groom to immersing himself in a mikveh before his wedding? This custom is referenced in Kitzur Yalkut Yosef (nisu'in v'shidduchin: 3:11): ...
-1
votes
4answers
83 views

the King is in the Field

What is the source of the expression that during the month of Elul the King is in the field? I have seen this on many occasions but could not find any source.
1
vote
1answer
37 views

From where do we know that after 70 years old we cannot complain about the death's age

I heard that after 70 years old, we have only bonus years. What is the source for this?
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Source for Chizzuk Gemara

Mori V'Rabi HaRav Schachter gave a speech at YU last week and in it said that there is a Gemarah that says that people who are learning Torah and are keeping Mitzvos also need Chizzuk. Where is this ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Temple Mount and Tefillah

On Aish.com, I saw the following: הר הבית הוא שער השמים - The Temple Mount is the gateway to heaven. כל תפילה עולה דרך מקום זה - All prayers ascend from this spot. Does anyone know where this line ...
31
votes
26answers
2k views

About what were rabbis ahead of the times?

I have heard claims that experts in the world of Torah were significantly ahead of their counterparts in the world of natural science (or mathematics, or psychology, or…) in that they knew X ...
1
vote
1answer
83 views

Sources for Holding One's Left Hand in Right Hand During Prayer

What are the earliest sources for the practice of holding one's left hand in one's right hand during prayer? (particular during the Ammidah). The Talmud Shabbat (10a) notes a practice of holding ...
-2
votes
1answer
85 views

Rabbi Yonasan Eibshetz on the Messiah and Redemption

The BIN says the following: "Rabbi Yonasan Eibshetz in his book Ya’aros Dvash states, 'At a certain moment the time will come when the Messiah should have already arrived but the redemption has not ...
8
votes
2answers
126 views

Earliest halakhic sources for wearing both Rashi and Rabbenu Tam tefillin simultaneously?

Orach Chayim brings that pious men should wear both Rashi and R. Tam tefillin at once when davening (34:2-3). Do we know what the earliest halakhic sources recommending this are, and their reasoning? ...
3
votes
1answer
85 views

'Removal of the evil inclination is like removal of the soul'

I saw recently (here) in the name of the Chazon Ish that 'removal of the evil inclination removes the soul'. Is there a written source for this (either in the writings of the Chazon Ish or elsewhere)? ...
9
votes
3answers
359 views

Is there any reason to deny aliens?

Is there any reason that we couldn't believe in life on another planet somewhere? Is there any source that indicates to the contrary?
2
votes
1answer
60 views

Mission to educate?

Someone told me that Jewish people have, loosely speaking, a mission to be educators by teaching others sciences, religion etc. Are there any sources to back this up? Preferably some quotes?
3
votes
1answer
78 views

Talmud reference - eagles approaching nests

From the News, it states "Nachman concluded by recounting a teaching from the Talmud .... The eagle approaches his baby eaglets in the nest very slowly. He makes sure that they notice him gradually, ...
1
vote
0answers
39 views

Source for requirement of 3rd party hechsher? [duplicate]

When you eat another Jew's food, you are entitled to rely on him for the kashrus of the food. By that reasoning, if he opens a restaurant, and you know him to be Yarei Shamayim, you shouldn't need ...
6
votes
1answer
61 views

Who added on the words לאלתר לחיים טובים ולשלום to the greeting לשנה טובה תכתב ותחתם?

Orach Chaim 582:9 - The Rama brings in the name of the Tur that on Rosh Hashana one should bless his friend & family לשנה טובה תכתב. Be'er Hataiv says that one should say לשנה טובה תכתב ותחתם. ...
4
votes
3answers
349 views

text for Rav Kook's positive viduy?

It was quoted in a class that I was in once that Rav Kook has a text for a positive viduy where he takes the normal expression of sin and inverts it to talk about what we have done right. What is the ...
1
vote
1answer
51 views

Source and details about not showing the shape of the body

I heard that tight clothing on woman is not permitted, Something like It shows the shape of the body. Is this true? what does this mean practically? Sources please
1
vote
0answers
50 views

Source that elbow it the border for tznius

Similar Tznius In Regards to Covering Elbows Is it true that the elbow is the border of what needs to be covered on the arms for tznius if yes what is the source of it (I understand it has something ...
6
votes
1answer
133 views

Biblical prediction for Ashkenazi-Sephardi split

Is there any prediction in the Torah for the split between Ashkenazim and Sephardim? I was told that there is but can't think of anywhere to look. Thanks.
6
votes
4answers
257 views

How/why does kaparot work?

The ritual of kaparot [lit. atonement], which is usually done just prior to Yom Kippur (usually the day before), where one waves a chicken or an [unspecified] amount of money over one's head in a ...
4
votes
0answers
79 views

Convert without accepting mitzvos?

Conversion is always a hot topic, especially here in Israel. Many times conversions take place where the Ger (convert) didn't have the intention to be m'kabel (accept) the mitzvos. People scream and ...
1
vote
8answers
2k views

Does Jewish tradition indicate that Jewish people tend to be rude?

From what I've seen many non-Jews have a stereotype of Jewish people as being rude and greedy. Is there a Jewish source (from the bible,talmud, midrash, zohar, or classic torah commentators) that ...
0
votes
1answer
54 views

The Machzeh Einayim on crying

In the book With Hearts Full of Love on page 300, Rabbi Mattisyahu Salomon states the following: In Machzeh Einayim the sefer asks, "Why is that the Creator constructed people in such a way that no ...
0
votes
1answer
44 views

A Novi is the spokesperson of G-d

I read in Jewish Wisdom in the Numbers on page 291, the following: The primary function of a נביא, prophet, was to serve as the spokesperson of G-d. This title, derived from the phrase נִיב ...
-1
votes
1answer
36 views

Sha’arei HaKedushah on Middos

The Sha’arei HaKedushah writes, "One must exert greater caution in exercising proper middos than in observance of the mitzvos." Does anyone know where the Sha’arei HaKedushah says this?
4
votes
1answer
119 views

Kalam Cosmological Argument

Wikipedia writes: The Kalām cosmological argument is a variation of the cosmological argument that argues for the existence of a first cause for the universe, and the existence of a god. Its ...
2
votes
1answer
48 views

Not saying shir shel yom on Rosh Chodesh?

This morning (Rosh Chodesh), i davened at the Ohel Yitzchak shul on Washington St., Jerusalem (no, not that Ohel Yitzchak). After aleinu but before shir shel yom the gabbai announced that because it ...
1
vote
2answers
69 views

In Hilkhot Teshuvah 3:7 the Rambam says one who believes in more than one ruler is a heretic. What is the basis for this?

In Hil. Teshuvah 3:7 of the Mishneh Torah (in his listing of heretics - minim), the Rambam makes the following statement: והאומר שיש שם מנהיג אבל הן שנים או יותר "The one who says there is indeed a ...
0
votes
0answers
46 views

Moshiach and three meals

The Gemara Shabbos 118a says, "Whoever has three meals on Shabbos... will saved on from the birth-pangs of Moshiach." Why specifically 3 meals? Is the Gemara saying that one who specifically eats ...
4
votes
1answer
87 views

Washing After Leaving Cemetary

What are the earliest sources (i.e. Chazal or Rishonim) for washing one's hands after visiting a cemetery? Is this mentioned by the Rambam?
4
votes
1answer
63 views

Source for the description of Mashiach in MBD's “Some Day”

Mordechai Ben David's classic song "Some Day" gives a description of what will happen in Yemot HaMashiach (the days of Mashiach). It seems to be a very popular song, and has doubtlessly influenced ...