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Why don't we say “Misod” for Geshem and Tal?

On Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, the Shat"z says a short paragraph at the beginning of his repetition that starts with the words "מסוד חכמים ונבונים," which is an explanation for the insertion of extra ...
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Can one use potential wind power to transport on Shabbos?

Would it be permitted to set a cart with a sail in a reshus hayachid with the intent that if the wind picks up, it will carry the contents 1) into a reshus harabbim, or 2) through a reshus harabbim ...
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90 views

How does deep snow affect carrying on Shabbos?

Thinking about the snow in Boston and the discussion at Shabbos 5a, if there was more than 10 tefakim (handbredths) of snow on the ground, would a reshus hayachad (private domain) extend from the soil ...
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75 views

Can a magician cast a spell in water?

The power of magicians and magic, the Talmud speaks plenty about. One such example is that of Ze'iri and the donkey, in Sanhedrin 67: זעירי איקלע לאלכסנדריא של מצרים זבן חמרא כי מטא לאשקוייה מיא ...
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Bracha on seeing indirect light from lightning?

As this question mentions, one should say the bracha if the sky lights up, even if one does not see the bolt. What if one is facing away from the window when lightning strikes and the light fills the ...
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28 views

Shemonei Esrei regarding the seasons in Divine Might

Every time I pray the Amidah, I get very hesitant regarding what season is appropriate for me to pray. I live in the southern hemisphere in a tropical climate. Therefore, we have one season dry and ...
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63 views

Why is 1 Elul / 1 Tishrei the New Year for livestock?

The first Mishna in Rosh Hashanah says that 1 Elul is the new year for livestock, i.e. I can only tithe one year's "crop" of livestock at a time, so 1 Elul delineates the herds. (Update: we follow the ...
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Why does Rashi claim “מלקוש” is locust terminology like “לקש” if “לקש” isn't “locusts”? (תענית ו ע״א)

Someone in my synagogue posed the following question to me; stumped, I pose it to you: The Bavli, Taanis 6 amud 1, notes that מלקוש is good rain. It then proposes that, perhaps, that's mistaken; ...
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36 views

Where is the Medrash about natural disasters showing Hashem is boss?

I recall coming across a Medrash that said, in passing, every couple of years Hashem brings about a disaster to show that he controls the world (or perhaps that we don't). This idea, I've seen in אור ...