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

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3
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2answers
110 views

Rav Hirsch and Black Slavery

I once saw Rav Hirsch make a passing reference to black slavery in America in his Collected Writings, but no longer remember where. Does anyone know where this might be?
3
votes
1answer
91 views

A reference to the soul of a Tzaddik like an eyelash in milk

I know that somewhere in something I have read there is a comment that someone (Yaakov avinu?) was so spiritually pure/holy that his soul did not cling to the earthly shell that was his body but came ...
3
votes
2answers
346 views

Source that martyrs don't feel pain?

A lot of people have told me (and I seem to remember seeing so myself) there is a view in the Rishonim that someone who is killed Al Kiddush Hashem (for the sanctification of G-d's name, ie., ...
3
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2answers
222 views

What was the earliest use of the Rambam's language in Shmita V'Yovel in support of kollel study?

Here's the Rambam, waxing poetic at the end of Laws of Shmita and Yovel (and his entire volume of Zeraim): ולא שבט לוי בלבד, אלא כל איש ואיש מכל באי העולם אשר נדבה רוחו אותו והבינו מדעו להיבדל ...
3
votes
1answer
51 views

Ashrei and Repetition of a posuk

I have heard that the only posuk in ashrei which requires repetition if one did not have kavanah when saying it is פותח את ידךָ. Where is the source for that?
3
votes
1answer
210 views

Which kind of relations are considered incestuous in Judaism?

Specifically what kind of relationships are defined as incestuous in Judaism? I am guessing that it is forbidden to marry one's parents/children or siblings but what about other relations like first ...
3
votes
3answers
602 views

Abridged Birkat HaMazon - Online?

HaRav Binyamin Kwalwasser from Yeshivat Lev Hatorah taught us that Rabbi Abadi is of the opinion that it is better to say a shorter version of Birkat Hamazon after eating than not to say it at all. ...
3
votes
1answer
206 views

Midrash About God Repeating Words of Torah

I am drawing a blank as to the source of this midrash, that when a person learns Torah, at the same time God is learning that same section, or that He repeats what the person said? (Hopefully I am ...
3
votes
1answer
503 views

Victim of an Accidental Killing - Source

I recall learning (many years ago) that in a case of accidental killing that qualifies the "killer" to go to an Ir Miklat, the victim in the case was someone who deserved a death penalty but the human ...
3
votes
2answers
131 views

Big-picture commentary on the siddur

There are many commentaries on the siddur. However, most of them focus in detail on the words of the prayers. I'm looking for a commentary which looks at the "big picture" of each prayer. That is, ...
3
votes
1answer
128 views

Did Yael Sleep with Sisra?

I've read that Yael slept with Sisra, but this obviously isn't directly in the text. What is the source for this and the reasoning behind it. Wasn't Yael married?
3
votes
1answer
91 views

What sefer has rashei teivot הל''פ?

The Kaf Hahayyim in Yoreh Deah often cites a sefer whose name he abbreviates with the rashei teivot הל''פ. I can't find this acronym in his luach rashei teivot at the beginning of Yoreh Deah volume 1, ...
3
votes
2answers
196 views

How similar is orthodoxy practiced today to ancient times?

As an orthodox Ashkanazi Jew, I hear all the time that the way we practice is the same as we've been doing it for thousands of years (albeit with influences by the Ba'al Shem Tov, the mussar movement, ...
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
244 views

What is the source for not leaving onions overnight and why don't some care?

This question mentions that one mustn't eat onions and garlic that have been left overnight, because of danger: Eating onions or garlic left overnight - there are ways around this, and some are ...
3
votes
1answer
212 views

Could the minhag of lighting menorah in Shuls have developed from when guests would stay in Shul?

Could the minhag (=custom) of lighting menorah in synagogues have developed from when guests would stay in the synagogue? Does anyone bring this as a source for the minhag? If so, would it not apply ...
3
votes
2answers
226 views

Is there a source for the Kallah Bride wearing white in Torah?

BS"D Is there a Torah source for the Kallah Bride to wear only white? What about a second marriage? Does the white indicate that the bride and groom make the day before marriage a special attempt to ...
3
votes
1answer
113 views

Why does Chazan (“seer”) mean prayer leader?

The leader of the Tefillah is referred to as a חַזַּן. The word חַזַּן, although translated as a cantor, actually comes from the word חֲזוֹן which means vision. Is there a source for this?
3
votes
2answers
141 views

What is the unique energy of Tishrei that corresponds to Sukkot?

Ramchal and many others teach that every moed/festival/zman has a certain energy that it brings down with it, and every year we can access that particular force to serve Hashem in the relevant way. ...
3
votes
1answer
297 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
votes
2answers
624 views

Source for long payos

Where is there a source for having long payos ,and if there are sources what is the oldest source.? I am talking about the extra length besides for the halachic necessity. Like behind the ears or ...
3
votes
1answer
169 views

Advantages of converts (in spiritual terms)

I've heard before that the Ari Zal says the neshemas ("souls") of gerim (converts) comes from the highest places. Is there any source for this? Where is this brought down? As well what other ...
3
votes
1answer
80 views

Ashkenazi unsure whether he or she counted the 'Omer one night

According to the Daily Halacha website: If a person is unsure whether or not he counted a day of the Omer, and cannot determine conclusively if he had counted or if he had missed that day, he ...
3
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2answers
184 views

What does the word “Karpas” mean?

That which by the Seder on Pesach we eat "karpas", what does this word actually mean and where does it come from?
3
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1answer
55 views

Seeking source of explanation of ולא יכל יוסף להתאפק

וְלֹא יָכֹל יוֹסֵף לְהִתְאַפֵּק — Yosef could not forbear (Gen. 45:1) — but had he done so, had he completed the brothers' reconciliation that he had started, then the kingdom would ...
3
votes
3answers
300 views

Modern nations and Umos Haolam

Where can I find a discussion about the roots of modern nations, in the Umos Haolam mentioned in the Torah and Chazal?
3
votes
1answer
54 views

No day without its curse

The Gemara (Sotah 48a) says, “from the day that the Beis HaMikdosh was destroyed, there has been no day without its curse.” 1a) What does the Gemara mean? 1b) What does it's curse mean?
3
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2answers
86 views

Source for “אין שמחה כשמחת התרת הספקות”

Some people in my synagogue this morning were discussing the aphorism אין שמחה כשמחת התרת הספקות there's no joy like the joy of the resolution of doubts or words to that effect. Specifically, ...
3
votes
2answers
100 views

ראש וראשון לכל דבר שבקדושה

The phrase "ראש וראשון לכל דבר שבקדושה" is used quite often in haskamos and introductions to describe people who devote their life to Torah study or supporting Torah study or other important Jewish ...
3
votes
1answer
231 views

Drinking medicine with a straw on shabbas

I saw on Revach.net questions about drinking with a straw and it mentioned that the Mahrsham held that drinking medicine from a straw might be considered a shinui and permitted on shabbas. Does anyone ...
3
votes
1answer
54 views

Source for the order of the aleph-beis?

What is the source for the Hebrew alphabet being in the order that it is? Meaning I realize that there are perhaps several sources that Aleph is the first letter, beis is the second etc, but is there ...
3
votes
1answer
87 views

What is the earliest source of rhymes in Jewish texts?

Many (most?) piyyutim have some sort of rhyme to them. Unlike alphabetic acrostics, for example, rhyming does not appear in Tanach. What is the earliest source of rhymes in Jewish texts? (If R' ...
3
votes
1answer
95 views

Source for book of Tehillim out of order?

I recall learning a midrash (shochar tov?) that the book of Tehillim is out of order and Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi wanted to put it back in order but was not allowed to do so. Where is this statement ...
3
votes
1answer
88 views

Source for Osnat's Locket

I've heard that the reason Joseph knew he could marry Osnat was because he saw her wearing a locket / pendant with a Hebrew inscription on it so he knew she was a Hebrew. Has anyone heard this story ...
3
votes
1answer
128 views

Source that a woman is considered to have a bris milah

I recall learning, I think in mesechtas kiddushin, that a woman is the (halachic?) equivalent of a man who has had a bris milah performed. In other words, since she does not have the same organ she is ...
3
votes
2answers
153 views

Which 20th century rabbi said “G-d normally doesn't stop the ill-intentioned”?

I recall hearing the following story: There was a non-observant Israeli Jew who kept having visions of his deceased father telling him he should do more religiously. Finally he was about to turn on ...
3
votes
1answer
136 views

Seared Sushi Bishul Yisroel

Certain Sushi require the searing of the fish on the outside. Does this process require a Jew light the torch used to do the searing or is it not required? I have seen that some stores do and some do ...
3
votes
2answers
62 views

Divine Names for Judgement and Mercy

I have been told that the name of God אלוקים‏, Elokim represents the מידת הדין‏ or aspect of judgement, and that the name יקוק‏, the ineffable name represents the מידת הרחמים or aspect of ...
3
votes
1answer
55 views

Rambam's statement about a blessing from the Ri Migash

The Artscroll Rishonim history book, in the section about the Rambam, records a "tradition" that the Rambam, as a young child, received a blessing from the Ri Migash, and that he (the Rambam) later ...
3
votes
1answer
55 views

Where does R' Ovadia Yosef write that women can contribute towards a Minyan for lighting the Menorah?

I know there is another question that discusses others sources: I am specifically looking for the source in יביע אומר quoted in ילקוט יוסף תרעא:טו בית כנסת שעדיין לא הגיעו המתפללים להתפלל מנחה ...
3
votes
2answers
61 views

Source for the quotation, “More than Jews have kept the sabbath…”

I have heard and seen in print many times the quotation attributed to Achad Ha'am that "more than Jews have kept the sabbath, the sabbath has kept the Jews" (exemplified in all its unattributed ...
3
votes
4answers
92 views

Is Earth a gift from Hakadosh Baruch Hu?

I have always been confused by the entrustment of the earth to Adam. Is the earth a gift, or do we merely have stewardship? Do any rabbbanim state an opinion, particularly whether any Acharonim weigh ...
3
votes
1answer
95 views

No Musicians for a Schochet

I was told that the Aruch Hashulchan says that a Musicians may not be a Schochet does anyone know where it says this and if it is true and why that is?
3
votes
2answers
50 views

Collection of poems by Yehuda HaLevi

Where can I find a printed book with a collection of poems by Yehuda HaLevi? Ideally this book should (in order of importance): Be available to an American consumer Include the original Hebrew ...
3
votes
2answers
161 views

Origin of the Escalator analogy

What is the origin of the escalator analogy of always striving for growth? I'm referring to the analogy that, in life, like a person climbing a downward escalator, if one is not constantly striving ...
3
votes
1answer
127 views

Referring to parent in third person

I have seen some homes where the children refer to the parent in third person as a sign of respect (Would Abba like to...). I'm curious to know if this practice is brought down in any sefer and if in ...
3
votes
1answer
131 views

Aveilus for an adoptive parent

Are there any dinim of aveilus for a child that was adopted when his adoptive parents pass away? Are there any poskim that spoke about this?
3
votes
1answer
66 views

Splitting up Shacharis between two Chiyuvim

I have Davened in a few Shuls where they have split up Shacharis between two Chiyuvim. (One Davens until Ashrei after Tachanun / One davens from Ashrei until the end.) What is the source for doing so? ...
3
votes
1answer
90 views

Where is “no Tachanun” on Pessach Sheni documented? [duplicate]

In almost every Siddur I have checked - as well as all the Luach's around, it says not to say Tachnun on Pessach Sheini - 14 Iyar. Yet I cannot find a source for it, nor in Shulchan Aruch neither in ...
3
votes
1answer
78 views

Graphology - sources that permit or forbid it

I saw a orthodox Jewish newspaper that has a column on graphology. Are there any sources that discuss graphology, pro or con? Is it hocus pocus? Is it similar to palm reading?