3
votes
2answers
213 views

Was Lot, himself, sodomized when he first moved into Sodom?

In Genesis 19, Lot defends the angels who came under his roof against the demands of the local men who want a chance to sodomize the three visitors. From the Torah's description, and Rashi's take on ...
3
votes
1answer
91 views

Refilling a saltshaker on Shabbos

This past Shabbos I was at a house and the saltshaker was empty. I went to refill the saltshaker and a fellow told me I can not reseal the cover as it is considered a Toldah of Boneh. Is this accurate ...
3
votes
1answer
319 views

Kashering glass plates

We bought from eBay glass fish-shaped plates, manufactured by Arocroc (France) in 1970 or so. The listing had "unused" in the description but that is not certified. How does one kasher glass plates? ...
3
votes
1answer
367 views

Are you allowed to borrow money from another Jew with interest?

So ... I understand you're not allowed to lend money to another Jew with interest, I won't get into the question of why. Does this mean you're also not allowed to accept money from another Jew, where ...
3
votes
1answer
51 views

מֵאַבְנֵי (Gen. 28:11) and הָאֶבֶן (Gen. 28:18)

Do any commentaries mention a reason for the plural "stones" in Gen. 28:11 and the singular "stone" in Gen. 28:18? In Gen. 28:11, it says that Ya'akov took "of the stones" (מֵאַבְנֵי) and put them ...
3
votes
3answers
124 views

When do you interrupt to answer Kaddish?

Often I find myself in the middle of some part of davening when the chazzan starts saying kaddish. Should I interrupt to answer or does it depend on which part of davening I am holding?
3
votes
1answer
159 views

Does Rambam include the Oral Torah in his eighth principle?

When Rambam says that a principle of faith is that the entire Torah that we now have is that which was given to Moshe, does he include both written and oral Torah, or only the written Torah? If the ...
3
votes
2answers
119 views

Unrelated kadish in a shiv'a house

What should someone who would otherwise be saying kadish (whether as an obligation or not) do in a shiv'a (mourning) house? Should he say kadish along with the mourners (I'm asking according to the ...
3
votes
1answer
124 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
119 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
85 views

“פְּנִיאֵל” and “פְּנוּאֵל”

Is the פְּנִיאֵל of BeReishis 32:31 the same as the פְּנוּאֵל of 32:32? If so, why the change in term used to refer to it? If not, is there a story behind the two places with such similar names?
3
votes
1answer
125 views

Are you allowed to make, buy and sell trumpets?

The torah forbids creating artifacts used in the beis hamikdash (based on the verse lo taasun iti (Exodus 20:19), see Talmud Avoda Zara 43a, Rambam Beit Habechira 7:10 and Shulchan Aruch YD 141:8). ...
3
votes
1answer
121 views

Moshe being called Moshe Rabbeinu

We refer to Moshe as "Moshe Rabbeinu". (It's interesting about the avos as well that we say, for example, Avraham Avinu; however, I'll keep that for a separate question.) When was the first time (and ...
3
votes
1answer
235 views

boreh pri hagafen and hamotzi during the week

On Shabbat and holidays, we say kiddush before hamotzi (I think because hamotzi would normally cover the wine? Is that right?). During the week, what is the proper procedure? Is it to say hagafen and ...
3
votes
1answer
109 views

If I want to keep a bentcher in my pocket wrapped, can I use a clear sandwich bag?

I carry a mincha/maariv bentcher in my pocket, and I keep it wrapped in a paper covering in case I walk into the bathroom. (I know that some hold that bathrooms today don't need a double covering, but ...
3
votes
5answers
176 views

Derech Ha-Limud in Chumash

I for a long time have had the question what is the proper way to learn Chumash in order to get to a good understanding al pi pshat. Many times I hear people saying over vertlach on the Parsha and ...
3
votes
1answer
235 views

Eating before shachris when up all night

This question has been asked (and answered) on this forum before, but my question is when is the cutoff after which it is considered eating before shachris (as opposed to eating AFTER maariv). ...
3
votes
2answers
557 views

Is it true that Jews believed in sheol before the belief in hereafter entered into Judaism?

I have heard claimed that Jews first believed in Sheol which was considered as a place below the ground and it meant to be a place of eternal rest, free of any reward and punishment. However in later ...
3
votes
1answer
52 views

Making a tanai on Scach

It says in SA Siman 638 that one may make a tanai (condition) on the "noi sukkah" (sukkah decorations) in order he should be able to use it during the chag and that it won't become muktzeh l'mitzvaso ...
3
votes
1answer
87 views

What is “הער״ט איר ניט”?

נטעי גבריאל, in הלכות נשואין, volume 2, chapter 118, section 8, footnote 11, cites the מהרי״ל‬ (biographical information): שכשהיה קורא לאשתו אמר בלשון‬ ‫אשכנז הער״ט איר ניט כדרך העולם שהזיווגים ...
3
votes
1answer
181 views

Pain of animals on shabbat

So a friend of mine showed me the following verse from Matthew 12:11 (strange to bring a New Testament quote into a halacha question, I know) ... they asked him, “Is it lawful to heal on the ...
3
votes
1answer
392 views

Many mamzerim today?

In modern times, we go out of our way to make sure that we never find out that someone is a mamzer. For example, courts in Israel are very reluctant to order paternity tests for children for fear of ...
3
votes
3answers
212 views

Why check pockets on Shabbos?

It says in Shabbos (12a) that one should always check his pockets on Friday so he won't accidentally carry on Shabbos. I don't understand the purpose of this checking. Even if one did carry ...
3
votes
2answers
216 views

Why do Lubavitch talisos ensure tzitzis hang off the side?

A Lubavitch chasid's talis gadol has a special way of being tied that ensures that the tzitzis hangs off of the side of the talis and not off of its front or back. Why?
3
votes
2answers
110 views

Daf Yomi Scheduling for Shabbos, Yom Tov, and Sundays

With the twelfth Siyum HaShas behind us, I was wondering what is the best way for a person to maintain their Daf Yomi schedule on Shabbos, Yom Tov, and Sundays. Is it best to learn at a different time ...
3
votes
1answer
111 views

Kilaim of inedible plants?

Does Kilaim apply to plants with no edible parts, like grass? Do homeowners need to be concerned with how they landscape if they have only plants with no edible parts in their plans?
3
votes
1answer
196 views

etymology of “Bnei Blial”

The term "בְּנֵי בְלִיָּעַל" appears several times in Shmuel (e.g., 1Sam 2:12). It is usually translated along the lines of "dishonorable people". Where does בְלִיָּעַל come from? Are there other ...
3
votes
1answer
62 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
2answers
209 views

Bracha on Smoking

(Inspired by Double AA) Based on the Premise (which I may be wrong on) that there are pieces of the actual Tobacco leaves or whatever else is smoked in the inhaled part of the smoke hence there would ...
3
votes
5answers
331 views

Performing miracles with Hashem's Name

Moshe killed a mitzri by uttering a shem Hashem, name of Hashem, according to Rashi, Sh'mos 2:14. Bilaam pronounced the 42 letter shem Hashem (known as the 'sod ha'affifah) and was able to fly. ...
3
votes
3answers
198 views

Conventions for derivation of Hebrew names

How is a Hebrew name chosen for a person whose legal name is English (or other vernacular)? Is the name chosen based on phonetic resemblance to one's English name, a resemblance in meaning, or mere ...
3
votes
1answer
245 views

What kind of Mechitza is required when the women daven on the second floor?

Many times I have seen Shuls where women pray on a balcony on the second floor. What kind of Mechitza do they need? Is it enough if one can't see them (for example, if the angle is such that they ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

Wishes to a mourner in addition to “Hamokom Yenachem Eschem”

I have heard some people say in Yiddish after "Hamokom Yenachem Eschem B'Soch Shaar Aveilei Tzion V'Yerushalayim" ("May God comfort you alongside the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem"), "Zulst Mer Nisht ...
3
votes
2answers
74 views

What happened to the rest of the Jews who lived in Yehuda?

When Sancheiriv conquered the kingdom of Israel and exiled them, did he also conquer the rest of the kingdom of Yehuda or did he try going to Yerushalaim first (and never made it to the rest of Yehuda ...
3
votes
1answer
103 views

Muktzeh found in drawer

If I am looking for something in a drawer on Shabbat and then find something muktzeh in that drawer, can I close the drawer?
3
votes
1answer
114 views

Why are a couple words in Ma'oz Tzur different in some sidduriim?

The Text I am referring to is: רָעוֹת שָׂבְעָה נַפְשִׁי, בְּיָגוֹן כֹּחִי כָּלָה חַיַּי מֵרְרוּ בְקֹשִׁי, בְּשִׁעְבּוּד מַלְכוּת עֶגְלָה וּבְיָדוֹ הַגְּדוֹלָה הוֹצִיא אֶת הַסְּגֻלָּה חֵיל ...
3
votes
2answers
55 views

אַשְׁרֵי--שֶׁאֵל יַעֲקֹב בְּעֶזְרוֹ: Why Kel Yaakov?

Tehilim 146:5 says אַשְׁרֵי--שֶׁאֵל יַעֲקֹב בְּעֶזְרוֹ: why Kel Yaakov? Why not Kel Avraham or Kel Yitzchok?
3
votes
2answers
67 views

What is the significance of “as of this day”?

‏"מכרה כיום את בכורתך לי" (בראשית כה לא)‏ Translated as: Sell me as of this day your birthright What do the words "as of this day" mean?
3
votes
2answers
97 views

Am I allowed to use borrowed money for something else?

Reuven goes to his good friend Shimon and tells him that he needs $10,000 for X. Shimon naturally agrees. Reuven then realizes that he needs the money for Y instead. Is Reuven allowed to use the ...
3
votes
2answers
126 views

is there a good source for critical study of shabbat zemirot?

The Shabbat Zemirot are written as poetry/songs, and as such, can be kind of cryptic. (See questions tagged "shabbat-songs" for examples of questions about certain phrases in the songs. Is there a ...
3
votes
1answer
111 views

What is חית ראמים?‎

In the Shabas table song "M'nucha v'simcha", God is credited as having created חַיַּת רְאֵמִים What does this mean? It would seem to translate literally as "animal of ראםs". Now, we do find a ...
3
votes
1answer
142 views

Birkat Kohanim in Mussaf on Simchas Torah?

MB 669 seif koton 17 says in the name of the Levush that the custom is that the Kohanim do not bless the people at Mussaf on Simchas Torah because there is a likelihood that the kohanim may be ...
3
votes
3answers
133 views

Yotz'ros — but no ahavos

Why are there yom tov additions to the first b'racha before sh'mone esre in the morning and to the third, but never to the second? (In maariv, by contrast, every birchas k'rias sh'ma has yom tov ...
3
votes
1answer
101 views

decree of two days of Yom Tov

The decree of keeping two days of Yom Tov outside of Israel is because Rosh Chodesh used to be determined by Beis Din and its messengers couldn't reach all of exiles in time, thereby requiring people ...
3
votes
1answer
60 views

What species of esrog do people use?

I know Lubavitchers are makpid to use only Esrogim from Genoa (if not grown there, at least that species). What do other communities use? Does anyone still use Korfu?
3
votes
1answer
59 views

“Placing” oil, but “placing” frankincense

When discussing the מנחת חוטא (the mincha form of the קרבן עולה ויורד), the Torah (Vayikra 5:11) instructs that לֹא יָשִׂים עָלֶיהָ שֶׁמֶן וְלֹא יִתֵּן עָלֶיהָ לְבֹנָה he will not place on it ...
3
votes
3answers
131 views

Does a Late Bris Necessitate Teffilin?

When one makes a Bris after Shacharis, he wears Tefilin. If a Bris is made later on in the day, does he wear Tefilin? Why or why not? And if he does, does it require a second Bracha?
3
votes
2answers
453 views

Davening Maariv at Shekiya / or after Plag HaMincha - repeating Kriyas Shema

If a person prays Maariv after Plag HaMincha prior to Shekiya is there any Halachic authority that holds he is Yotzei the Mitzva of Kriyas Shema and does not have to repeat it? What if he prays right ...
3
votes
2answers
119 views

Interrupting birkas hamazon

For what prayer responses (e.g. amen, baruch Hu uvaruch Sh'mo, y'he Sh'me...) may one interrupt his own recital of birkas hamazon?
3
votes
1answer
103 views

facing east in the bes hamikdash

Tamid perek 1, in discussing how t'rumas hadeshen was done, writes: He descended; he got to the floor, turned north, and went... Any idea which way he turned around (clockwise or ...

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