3
votes
3answers
128 views

Starburst Fruit Chews kosher?

Are Starburst Fruit Chews kosher? This website below clearly has an OU on the right side. However, Gelatin appears on the ingredient list, and the oukosher.org website doesn't have any reference to ...
11
votes
1answer
1k views

Is downloading pirated music stealing?

Either way, it should be frowned upon as not a nice thing to do, but would it actually be assur?
3
votes
2answers
68 views

Can a Gentile shovel / plow snow from your driveway on Shabbat if he has been paid for general work?

I read in Kitzur Shulcah Aruch (סימן צ - דין עשית חפציו בלא מלאכה ומלאכה על ידי גוי) that even if a person prepays a Gentile before Shabbat, he cannot tell him to specifically do work for him ...
6
votes
1answer
102 views

How do we understand Moshe's rebuke

On Devarim 1:1, Rashi comments that the various places listed are in fact veiled references to episodes in which the Jewish people rebelled. Thus Moshe was offering a kind of concealed rebuke. My ...
4
votes
1answer
92 views

Status of Catholic saints in Judaism

Roman Catholics and other branches of Christianity have a concept of sainthood, where they bestow a status to someone based on posthumous miracles attributed to them. They also pray to them. ...
4
votes
3answers
249 views

How can we just make our chametz ownerless?

I'm trying to understand the "legal fiction" wherein we declare any chometz we have as ownerless like the dust of the earth. Is this halachically acceptable? How can a person declare something in his ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Is there a site where I can see several different jewish translations at the same time?

The christians have that http://bible.cc/psalms/82-6.htm Is there something like that for jews? If there isn't, then perhaps lists of several good online jewish translation would be nice too. It ...
0
votes
2answers
70 views

Tachanun on 'erev Yom Ha'Atzmaut'

For those that hold Yom Ha'Atzmaut to be a 'chag' or 'pseudo-chag' (to whatever extent, see here), does it directly follow that tachanun is not said at mincha on erev Yom Ha'Atzmaut?
7
votes
5answers
215 views

Where can I find Prenumeraten/Prenumeranten?

A few years back I found an on-line source for "prenumeraten." Just to enlighten those who don't know, before a sefer was published years ago, it would seem that feelers were sent out to find out who ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

During Torah reading service, is a Cohen allowed to forgo a Levi Aliyah?

Shulchan Arukh, Orach Chayyim 135:8 says that during Torah reading, if there is a Cohen present but no Levi, the Cohen gets the first two aliyot. Let's say that on a Monday or Thursday, when there ...
3
votes
1answer
62 views

Specific writings of the Vilna Gaon

1- What writings of the Vilna Gaon do we have that are not commentary or textual emendations? 2- Do we possess any writings of the Vilna Gaon that talk about or reference his contemporaries or ...
5
votes
0answers
95 views
+50

Publisher prohibiting purchaser from sharing

Tradition articles are downloadable from the Tradition Online website, which prohibits further distribution of the materials. On each download page there is the following warning: It is strictly ...
3
votes
0answers
27 views

Why is there a special Haftarah for “Machar Chodesh”?

Usually, a special Haftarah (meaning one that pre-empts the regular haftarah designated for the weekly parsha) is said on a Shabbat that has a holiday such as Chanukah, and Shabbat Rosh Hodesh. ...
1
vote
2answers
38 views

Does anyone have a suggestion for a good book on dikduk?

I'm looking for a good book on dikduk for strictly loshon hakodesh (for studying tanach and talmud) . Any suggestions? in english preferably
4
votes
1answer
55 views

The Longest Pesach

There is a famous tape by Rabbi Shmuel Kunda entitled "The longest pesach" about a time when the Noda Beyehuda added on an extra day to Pesach in order to uncover a plot to poison the Jews of Prague. ...
4
votes
1answer
52 views

Breaking a “engagement” (shiduch)

I heard that breaking off an engagement to marry is bad. Is this true? I see that there are reasons that allow one to break an engagement: Chelkas Yaakov (EH 80) So is it not permitted to break it ...
6
votes
1answer
92 views

Kiddush Cup a Proper Wedding Gift for a Very Observant Couple?

My friend is very observant and will be getting married in May. I was thinking a Kiddush set would be an appropriate gift, but I want to make sure I'm in strict accordance with the laws (if any) of ...
4
votes
1answer
46 views

Is there a guideline to knowing when to consult a rabbi and when to use your own judgement?

Sometimes when I get a life dilemma I wonder if it's something I should be asking my rabbi or decide on my own. When it's a matter of Torah and Judaism then it's fairly clear that the rabbi should be ...
2
votes
2answers
376 views

Does the remarriage delay apply even in the case of yibbum?

If a woman is widowed or divorced, she must wait long enough before remarrying to firmly establish the paternity of a child who might be forthcoming (Daily Halacha cites SA Even Ha'ezer 13). The ...
2
votes
1answer
44 views

Responsum of Maimonides Regarding Translating Mishne Torah

The Maimonides Reader (p. 478) quotes Rambam's responsum to Ibn Gabir regarding translating the MT (also referenced here). He responds to a request from this Arabic speaker who was able to learn ...
1
vote
1answer
28 views

Immerse an item to be used only with a liner?

As a general rule, one must immerse, in a mikve, any glass or metal utensil or receptacle obtained from a non-Jew and to be used for preparing, serving, or eating food. (Source, source.) What if it's ...
5
votes
3answers
410 views

Tachanun at Mincha afternoon before Yom Yerushalem

For those who celebrate Yom Yerushalem,is Tachanun said during Mincha the afternoon before Yom Yerushalem?
17
votes
5answers
492 views

Can we argue with gedolim when we are sure that we are right?

I recently saw a teshuva by Rabbi Moshe Feinstein, Ohrach Chaim Volume 1 Teshuva 109, that quotes a letter from Rabbi Menashe Klein asking a question on Rabbi Moshe's psak but saying that he does not ...
2
votes
2answers
206 views
+50

Which insects are not kosher?

In Vayikra (11:23) it says: But all winged swarming things, which have four feet, are a detestable thing unto you. On which Rashi (quoting the Sifra aka Toras Cohanim) says: Go and learn if there ...
1
vote
1answer
126 views

Disagreeing with one's rebbe

We all have Rabbeim that we ask questions to. Is one allowed to disagree with his rebbe if he feels that his rebbe's viewpoint is incorrect?
6
votes
2answers
319 views

Source of Ramban's famous debate

Where can one find the 'disputation of Barcelona' between Pablo Cristiani and the Ramban?
4
votes
1answer
125 views

Can a non-practicing Jew give his only tefilin away as a gift?

What is the halacha behind gifting tefilin? What is the halacha of receiving tefilin? Can a Jew gift his only pair of tefilin if he does not use it and can another Jew accept a gift which leaves the ...
3
votes
1answer
39 views

Mezuzah in the work place

If a Jewish person works in a 'non-Jewish' workplace (that he does not own) to what extent does he need to place a mezuzah on the doorposts of his personal/shared office and other building entrances? ...
0
votes
1answer
19 views

Sifrei on Book of Devarim

Where can I find the Sifre on the book of Devarim online in text form (as opposed to Pdf)? The commentary of the Netziv would also be appreciated.
1
vote
1answer
18 views

Moreh Nevuchim Online

Is the Hebrew text of Maimonides' Moreh HaNevuchim available for free online? (In text form rather than Pdf).
31
votes
11answers
6k views

Is Christianity Avodah Zara?

It is commonly accepted that Islam is not Avodah Zarah (idolatry) since Islam has a clear monotheistic theology with a belief in Allah that parallels our view of "kail" or Hashem. It is even ...
0
votes
1answer
37 views

What kind of “tikun hamiddos” is advocated by the Torah?

Does the Torah require a person to 1- uproot and change the source of bad middos (and not simply to deny and suppress his desires) or 2- deny and suppress his desires and behavior (but not ...
0
votes
1answer
26 views

What's שולי הקדירה?

The משנה ברורה הלכות שבת סימן רנ״ג (מ״ו) talks about שולי הקדירה. What exactly is that talking about? Is it the top of the pot or the bottom?
10
votes
4answers
255 views

What's “chelek Eloka mimaal”?

I have frequently heard the human (or only the Jewish?) soul referred to as "חלק אלוק ממעל", literally "portion/section/piece/allotment of God (from) above". What does this mean? Who's the first to ...
7
votes
1answer
68 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 ...
9
votes
2answers
306 views

Do Jews pray to deceased forefathers?

Shalom, I would like to know if Jews consider it acceptable to pray to deceased ancestors, forefathers, or "saints" like some Christians in the Catholic tradition do. Deuteronomy 18:11 would seem to ...
2
votes
0answers
43 views

Understanding how halacha & mitzvot are derived

Halacha and mitzvot have many sources and I could use some help breaking this down. At a high level we have biblical commandments and rabbinic commandments. We have 613 biblical mitzvot, there are ...
2
votes
0answers
23 views

Waving or otherwise recognizing the English flag and its variants

Related to this question and this question the English flag and many of its variants from former colonies have the cross of someone who is recognized as a saint by Catholics, George. This cross was ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

Is Transcendental Meditation kosher?

Transcendental Meditation is a popular form of meditation that, many practitioners claim, relieves psychological stress. Although it was founded an Indian guru, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, it is not at all ...
6
votes
1answer
452 views

Does Judaism recognize contemporary prophets?

Some new religions like Bahai believe in relatively recent prophets. Some religions, like some Christian sects, often seen as heretics by the rest, like Mormon, believe in continuing revelations. So ...
6
votes
1answer
173 views

Rambam claiming some of Hazal were superstitious

I forgot where, but I remember reading the Rambam z"l saying that some Hazal believed in superstitions, ideas such as ayeen haro because they lived in small villages with lack of science, and ...
7
votes
2answers
372 views

Origin of Reform/Conservative “scarf” talleisim

I've noticed that Reform and Conservative often use small "scarf" talleisim (here's an image). Where did this practice originate? (Is there any connection to the scarves that some Christian priests ...
3
votes
2answers
142 views

The “Canon” - Basic Sefarim for a Shul Library?

Our shul library has been neglected for many, many years, and b'h' we are finally cleaning and organizing it. We have some great books, but I'd like to know of some resources identifying important ...
16
votes
4answers
505 views

Stripes on a Talis

Is there any reason for the stripes on a talis? Does the color of the stripes have any significance?
4
votes
3answers
36 views

Shelosha Ushloshim Ushlosh Meyot - mi yodeya?

Who knows three hundred thirty three? שלשה ושלושים ושלוש מאות - מי יודע?‏ The traditional Passover song "Echad - mi yodeya" implies a possible presupposition that there is a Jewish significance ...
2
votes
1answer
31 views

Derech Hashem - Looking for a complete set of online Shiurem?

I am looking for a complete set of audio Shiurem on the Ramchal's Derech HaShem The audio quality should be very good Should be no longer than 45 - 50 min per Shiur The series should cover the whole ...
4
votes
0answers
31 views

Are there circumstances when one should repeat a prayer in which he had no kavana the first time?

Halichipedia writes One should have kavana (proper concentration) when praying Shemonah Esrei. If one is unable to have kavana for all of Shemonah Esrei one should make an extra effort to ...
-6
votes
1answer
34 views

G-d can help and cast down

In Divrei HaYamim (II 25:8) it says, "... for G-d has the power to help and to cast down." Why is Divrei HaYamim telling us something so obvious?
1
vote
1answer
30 views

Divrei Kabbalah in Maimonides' Usage

Rambam in the Laws of Fast Days (4: 7) writes that verses are recited from "Divrei Kabbalah" and from "Kitvei Kodesh" (holy writings). וּפְסוּקִים מִדִּבְרֵי קַבָּלָה וּמִכִּתְבֵי הַקֹּדֶשׁ ...
13
votes
3answers
1k views

Does a Jewish grandmother (mother's side) really get one accepted as a Jew?

My grandmother (mother's side) is 100% Jewish and even living in Israel. As far as I know, that makes, me a Jew, too. But it feels a little bit strange to say that I am Jewish just because my ...

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