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2
votes
1answer
62 views

Writing during Chol HaMoed

I've heard some people don't write during the intermediate days of the festival (Chol HaMoed). Is this a formal prohibition or just a custom? What's the origin of this?
-3
votes
2answers
302 views

Why say Hashem wrote the torah? [closed]

Why do people say Hashem wrote the torah, shouldn't it be He created it, made it, edited it, etc?
4
votes
2answers
130 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?
2
votes
1answer
69 views

Does Graphology Have Any Basis In Judaism? [duplicate]

Graphology is the theory/science that one's middos can be deduced from one's handwriting. Is there any source for such ideas from the rishonim or earlier?
5
votes
1answer
235 views

Typing on Shabbos

If one would type on a computer on Shabbos, would he be ovar an issur d'oraisa in regards to the malacha of writing? (The other malachos involved aside for a moment.) Is there any room to say this ...
4
votes
1answer
108 views

Why do books say “ספר” on them?

Why do Jewish books often say "ספר" on the spine, cover, or cover page? The word is synonymous with "book" in modern Hebrew, and some closely related concept like "document" or "scroll" in Tana"ch. ...
3
votes
0answers
79 views

Using Zephaniah 3:8 as a pangram

Would usage of Zephaniah 3:8 solely as a pangram – it being the only option with both finals and cantillation – constitute shemos, and therefore require genizah? לָכֵ֤ן חַכּוּ־לִי֙ נְאֻם־יְהוָ֔ה ...
5
votes
1answer
213 views

I would like to see an actual Vilna Shas

I would like to see the pages of an actual Vilna Shas. I know there are many many reprints out there in bookstores, my bookshelf, and websites like http://www.e-daf.com, but that's not what I want. I ...
4
votes
1answer
37 views

Writing down Torah she'beal peh for personal use before the Tannaic period

Before the ruling was given that allowed the oral component of the Torah to be written down, what exactly was permitted and what was not permitted? More specifically, I would like to know if an ...
1
vote
1answer
134 views

Printing shem hashem

My siddur does not have the laining for rosh chodesh so I want to print a copy of it. Is there anything wrong with intentionally printing it without removing shem hashem?
3
votes
1answer
299 views

Why are some letters in the names of Haman's sons little?

In Esther 9:7,9 there are letters in the names of Haman's sons which are written smaller than usual in the megillah. Barring the purimfest 1946 explanation, what is the reason for these letters being ...
7
votes
2answers
147 views

Tikunei Ha-Zohar: What happened to Tikun 20?

hebrewbooks has a scan of the 1558 Mantuba edition of Tikunei HaZohar. In that edition, Tikun 20 is several pages long. (Starts here, goes for several pages). The only other edition I found on ...
1
vote
2answers
213 views

Is there a kosher way to get a permanent image on the skin?

Based on these excellent questions it appears that writing with ink permanently on the skin is forbidden and that there is no question of maras ayin for non permanent tattoos. Is there a way to make a ...
7
votes
2answers
404 views

Emotional distress with the overly sensitive

From the website dinonline: The Torah teaches: “When you sell something to your fellow, or buy from your fellow, do no wrong one man his fellow” (Vayikra 25:14). In a subsequent verse, the ...
3
votes
1answer
80 views

BS"D on documents for secular/non-Jewish audiences

Many Jews write BS"D or בס"ד (standing for בסיעתא דשמיא meaning "with God's help") or something similar at the top of all documents. As far as I am aware, there is no halacha that requires anything ...
1
vote
1answer
179 views

Rolling dice on shabbat?

I was told that when rolling dice [for a game, such as backgammon] on shabbos one should roll one di, move the pieces, and then roll the other di [and move the pieces]. The reason for this, I was told,...
3
votes
1answer
59 views

What is the history of writing on the Kotel?

Some photos of the Kotel (the western wall of the Temple) show large, black lettering, such as: http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/History/wallpics.html I have seen other drawings or photos ...
7
votes
1answer
83 views

Is there a problem of image projection on Shabbat?

There are night lights which don't just emit light but project an entire image (example). If such a device is plugged in before Shabbat, would there be a problem of closing window shades or doing ...
1
vote
2answers
54 views

Can you make chometz ink on Pesach?

My cousin would like to know about the permissibility of making ink on Pesach. The ink recipe includes flour, fruit juice, vinegar, and a little water. According to my cousin, it's not ראוי לאכילת ...
1
vote
0answers
94 views

Art on Chol Hamoed

Most people say that you can't write on Chol Hamoed, but is it permissible to draw for pleasure as that is not considered "work"?
13
votes
4answers
685 views

Typing on Chol Hamoed

Is typing allowed on Chol Hamoed? Does it make a difference if whatever is typed will be printed afterwards?
8
votes
6answers
612 views

Different Size Letters in the Torah

I've often wondered if someone has compiled anything about the "special letters" in the Torah: All the letters that are either big or small. Together, do they read as something special? One or more ...
7
votes
1answer
65 views

What are respectful ways to depict a vision involving Hashem in fiction?

I'm Jewish writing a story that at least Modern Orthodox I hope will consider fit to read, even if not necessarily to be consider frum by some to the right. I'm at the point where the heroine needs a ...
1
vote
1answer
85 views

Metal Kulmus for Sifrei Kodesh?

I was just looking at the Keset haSofer and came across an interesting halacha ואין נוהגין כן אלא כותבין בנוצה ואפי׳ בקולמס של ברזל This is to say that we may write with a metal kulmus * (pen ...
16
votes
3answers
183 views

What letter-counting system was used to mark the Planks of the Mishkan?

The sides between the 48 Planks of the Mishkan were marked with letters to keep them in order during assembly/disassembly (Shabbos 103a, & here). If the pairing system was one-letter:one-letter, ...
7
votes
1answer
818 views

What is the font with points in the middle of the letters called? [closed]

What is this [type of] font called - the kind that makes it look like every leg of every letter is a snake that swallowed a block? Where can I download such a font?
2
votes
1answer
284 views

Writing notes and highlighting in the Tanakh

Is taking notes and highlighting in a Hebrew/English Tanakh considered defacing the text?
1
vote
0answers
25 views

Yerushalmi amud gimel

If one goes through the citations in the Milon Even Shoshan, one might see references to words from the Yerushalmi with attribution like this: Please zoom in and look at the entry for pileish, on ...
2
votes
2answers
205 views

Why werent Rashi letters changed back

What is the basis of the change in Rashi's letters from the standard Hebrew ones? And if it was something that was dependent on a specific factor then, why weren't they changed back?
3
votes
3answers
546 views

symbol to denote a Jewish deceased author/writter?

In a written list of names I need to indicate which people have passed away. We normally use a dagger symbol for this. A dagger † in most appearances looks like a cross, a Christian symbol. ...
15
votes
6answers
387 views

Why are there colored splotches on the pages on many Jewish texts?

On many editions of the Chumash, Talmud, and even many more-modern books, you look at the side of the book (opposite the spine) and there are random colored splotches printed on the pages. (For ...
5
votes
2answers
252 views

How does one request a haskama (approbation)?

Are there any rules or or general best-practices for requesting an approbation (הסכמה/haskama)? Can an approbation that was sent based on an incomplete manuscript still be used if changes are made to ...
7
votes
1answer
322 views

Does the Biblical prohibition against writing on Shabbat apply to nonsense as well?

Writing (כותב) is one of the 39 melachot (forbidden labors) of Shabbat. Writing nonsense is forbidden regardless, but i'm curious whether it's a Biblical or Rabbinic prohibition. On a Biblical level,...
4
votes
3answers
220 views

Is highlighting text and writing in the siddur OK?

I want to highlight parts of the prayers where the congregation responds and where the chazzan speaks so I can better follow the service, as well as write in some notes about the prayer order, etc. ...
7
votes
0answers
78 views

What are the origins of the תושלב"ע prayer at the end of holy books?

When I finished the Book of Bereishit this Shabbos, the Tanakh I was reading concluded with this prayer: תם ונשלם תהילה לאל בורא עולם (Finished and completed. Praise to G!d, Creator of the Universe.) ...
7
votes
3answers
400 views

May one use a Sephardic Torah in an Ashkenaz minyan?

May an Ashkenaz minyan use a sephardic torah (written in כתב וועליש) for their minyan or vise versa? Please cite a source
5
votes
1answer
368 views

Is drawing a line with a crayon forbidden on Shabbat?

There are board games that involve using a crayon to draw lines (not letters or figures) on a board (e.g. EuroRails). Are these activities problematic on Shabbat? There are two aspects: the drawing ...
6
votes
1answer
91 views

Easy/pretty way to typeset Hebrew with Te'amim

I'm setting out to create a bentsher and am looking for the right software for the job. First, it is important to me that I have the ability to add Te'amim to biblical passages (e.g. kiddush). ...
2
votes
0answers
29 views

Is a beracha given in writing effective?

To whatever extent giving someone a beracha is effective, does a beracha given in writing have the same effect? Is the efficacy of the beracha somehow tied specifically to speech?
4
votes
2answers
528 views

Why is a “classicly” printed Sefer Torah not kosher?

"Classic" printing was a fairly simple process, very similar to using a large stamp. You carve out letters on a block, and cover it with ink. Then the printer presses the board on paper. This printing ...
14
votes
4answers
4k views

B'siyata D'shmaya or Baruch Hashem

Often, at the top of written work, Jews write either ב"ה, which stands for Baruch Hashem =blessed is the Name i.e., God, or בס"ד, which stands for b'siyata d'shmaya =with Heavenly help. What is the ...
4
votes
1answer
159 views

How could Moshe write on Shabbos?

I once saw this question in the magazine Kolmus: There's a tradition that Moshe wrote thirteen sifrei Torah on the day of his death. However, there are many opinions that Moshe died on Shabbos, ...
0
votes
1answer
142 views

Using a Magic Mug on Shabbos [duplicate]

A Magic Mug is a coffee cup that has a picture behind a material that is black at room temperature. When hot water is added the black color turns transparent, revealing a picture or writing underneath....
10
votes
5answers
928 views

Why did Rashi create a new letter system for his commentaries?

I had heard that he created his own lettering system so that his words would be easily distinguishable from the actual words of the Torah. Is this just hearsay or speculation? If so, is there any ...
1
vote
2answers
98 views

When Sofrim write Sifrei Torah, do they think of the Ba'alei Kri'ah (readers)?

I have read from many different Sifrei Torah as a Ba'al Kri'ah during the past approx. 30 years. Each Torah is unique, as B"H, it should be. Every sofer has a slightly different writing style, even ...
2
votes
1answer
150 views

Writing down the Oral Law

If the rabbis consider it Biblically forbidden to write down the Torah she'al peh, why is it not listed as one of the 613 mitzvot by Rambam and others
15
votes
5answers
429 views

Overhead projector on Shabbos?

A discussion came up with some guests over shabbos. One asked if one could use an overhead projector on Shabbos if it was turned on from before, i.e. could one put a new plastic sheet on it or not? In ...
4
votes
0answers
83 views

Can you take and post pictures of people online without their permission?

Realizing that there is some concern with having one's picture taken in the first place; according to those who allow pictures of people to be taken, is there any halachic reason which would prevent ...
7
votes
2answers
101 views

How large is a typical contemporary hagada commentary?

In a contemporary published hagada with commentary, how many total words does the commentary typically comprise? (For comparison, "Hagada - Mi Yodeya?", in its current form, weighs in at about 14,000 ...
1
vote
1answer
39 views

Notes becoming Sheimos

How coherent does a Torah thought have to be in order to make it Sheimos (not allowed to be disposed of normally)? Is it enough if: -It is written shorthand in such a way that only I would be able ...