All Questions

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89 views

Tehillim: can one pray Psalm 119 for themself after having prayed for family and friends?

After saying Psalm 119, one prays for a list of others. Is inserting one's self, after one's own list of others' names inappropriate to this tefillah, or is it designed for healing both self and ...
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65 views

What calendar-dependent laws must non-Jews follow?

While the calendar is vastly important in Judaism, it seems like it is barely applicable to non-Jews. The "big seven" Noahide laws seem to be perenially applicable; they dictate general rules for life ...
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72 views

Why is Midrash not in the Torah

If midrashim are so important and add crucial historical/sociological details and ethical teachings and enrich our understanding of Hashem's wisdom, why are they not included in the Torah?
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55 views

How many halachot are detailed in the Mishneh Torah?

How many halachot are detailed in the mishneh Torah? For counting purposes I am only interested in the counting of the author's. Meaning if the mishna torah puts two rules together under one halacha ...
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50 views

Kosher shops selling turkeys

I have noticed a Kosher shop selling turkeys only at this time of the year (...late December). Without getting into a discussion about the Kashrut status of turkeys, is this considered in the spirit ...
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109 views

Waking up early to eat before a fast

I was just wondering about the halachos of waking up to eat before a fast day. If one had intention, is it best to wake up, wash negal vasser, get dressed, go to bathroom say Al Netilas Yadaim, Asher ...
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32 views

Yosef's 10% in Israel

Yosef lived in the Holy Land from age six (B'reshis 30:25, 31:41) until age seventeen (Rashi to 37:34). This was eleven years, or 10% of his 110-year lifespan (50:26). Does anyone comment on this ...
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27 views

Online resource for Rav Yitzchak Blazer's Kochvei Ohr

I'm looking for something online to help learn the sefer Kochvei Ohr. I have the text but I'm looking for either a perush or a shiur on the sefer. An English translation would also be helpful (if it ...
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42 views

Process of making a chalitza

Although I've never actually witnessed a chalitza taking place, I understand there is a whole process involved. What is the earliest source for the process/procedure/ceremony that takes place today ...
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51 views

Didn't Shem already have an altar on Moriah?

We learn from the Torah that Akedat Yitzhok took place on the mountain of Moriah. We also know that Malki-Tzedek came to Avraham Avinu, bringing bread and wine. (Bereishit 14:18) Rashi brings the ...
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63 views

What are Geonim's definitions of Attiphath Yishma'elim?

I would like to specifically know what the definitions of attiphath yishma'elim were among the Geonim. The opinions of the Rishonim on the subject seem to be convoluted (i.e. no one really knew what ...
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44 views

What is the opinion of Chofetz Haim on speech of Joseph about his brothers

Can you please quote how Chofetz Haim defined "diba ra" that Joseph said about his brothers.Since it was not true, was it real "motzi shem ra"? If not, why? Joseph thought that he was saying the ...
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79 views

Conservative Jews saying “amen” instead of saying Harachamans

I've noticed that among Conservative Jews, it seems to be a common practice that one person recites the harachamans after Birkat Hamazon and others are silent and only respond "amen". Now, after one ...
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86 views

Original Nusach for El Male Rachamim

I have heard it said (see here, for example) that while memorial prayers for the departed are of greater antiquity, the actual text of the "El Male Rachamim" (אל מלא רחמים) originated as a response to ...
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53 views

Ner Mitzwa (MaHaRa"L), Machon Yerushalayim Edition

Edited/Footnoted by Rabbi Yehoshua Hartman, the Machon Yerushalayim editions of many (most/all?) MaHaRa"L publications have been made available in recent times. If one investigates the Internet, one ...
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54 views

Greeks' gas lamps

I once heard that there is a source that says the Greeks invented gas lamps or some sort of street lights which enabled the Jews to roam the streets at night and not be with their families. The plan ...
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30 views

Do Midwives/Labor Coaches have a special power to pray?

I heard that the midwives in Mitzrayim had a special power to their tefillos (prayers) specifically because they were midwives. Does anyone know if this is true, or has anyone heard something similar? ...
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125 views

Nespresso Machine Tevilas Keili alternatives

I recently acquired a new Nespresso coffee machine that will most probably be damaged if immersed. (The warranty will be void if immersed). Are there any alternatives to Tevila? I've heard you can ...
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111 views

Ancient Texts Claiming that G-d is Perfect

I am looking for a list of sources (early Rishonim and before) explicitly claiming that G-d is perfect. One place I found is Devarim 32:4 "The deeds of the [Mighty] Rock are perfect, for all His ways ...
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35 views

Toasting is baking?

What is the processed used by cereal makers to make cereal (most cereal makers)? I've heard it is toasting, and in that case the rabbi i spoke to said it would not be a problem of bishul goyim or pat ...
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28 views

Were the בגדי לבן‎ 30 ‎מנה in weight or value?

I'm studying משניות מסכת יומא and have come across this passage (in chapter 3 mishna 7, found in the Bavli on page 34:2): בשחר היה לובש פלוסין של שנים עשר מנה ובין הערבים הנדוין של שמונה מאות זוז ...
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100 views

Why do some prayers require you to stand?

Is there a significance of standing or sitting while reciting a prayer? The following prayers require one to stand: baruch sheamar, yishtabakh, shemoneh esrei and aleinu (according to some minhagim). ...
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29 views

selichos on yom kippur

Yom kippur is a day of kapparah (forgiveness). In most machzorim it says at a certain point in every t'filla 'Now one says selichot'. Does any shul ever say them? Which?
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44 views

Who first described the grammatical distinction of vav ha-hipukh v. vav ha-chibur in Tanakh?

To be more specific, who first wrote that a vav ha-chibur connects words or clauses together, but the vav ha-hipukh causes a "perfect" verb to become "imperfect" (for lack of better terms), and ...
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49 views

placement of l'dovid for nusach sefard

Nusach Ashkanaz places "l'dovid" always as the last teffilah. However, nusach sefard places it after aleinu during the week, but on shabbas it's placed after the yom: why is this?
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51 views

Are there any sources pro or con the main idea of the short story “the egg”

There is a very popular short story on the web called The Egg which has as it's main thrust that all human being are really the same person, just born in countless reincarnations. I was wondering is ...
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92 views

How does Lurianic Kabbalah treat Da'at?

Da'at is difficult to interpret. I have found this and this, but I am looking for the Lurianic interpretation specifically. Please note that I cannot read Hebrew.
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38 views

Preparing for Rosh Hashana during Elul

I hear often about the need for preparing for rosh hashana during Elul. Can anyone offer some practical suggestions as to what primarily this preparation entails. Sourced answers, only, please.
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132 views

Shaving(hair cuts) on Rosh Chodesh

What is the reason that hair cuts are not allowed(or advisable) on Rosh Chodesh according to Rav Yehuda Hachassid? A lot of things mentioned in the tzavvah should be avoided because of danger is this ...
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42 views

Can Kohanim who will bless the people start their journey to the duchan before Retzei?

Shulchan Oruch Mishnah Berurah 128 (8) [25] implies that the Kohanim should go up to bless the people after the prayer leader has said "Retzei". I see that many knowledgeable Kohanim start going up ...
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59 views

Psalms 111 and 112 and “hal'lu[k]ah”

During mincha on Shabas, many people say psalms 111 and 112. I've seen them posted on the walls of some synagogues, in fact; one such copy that I've seen has the word "hal'lu[k]ah" appended to the end ...
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93 views

Do dental instruments need to be toyveled?

Metal utensils that will be used to handle food that's to be consumed generally need first to be immersed in a mikvah ("toyveled") (if owned by a Jew). If the food or utensil is hot, the utensil must ...
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219 views

Matrilineal descent & Zera Israel

Would someone with Jewish heritage from a distant foremother on their maternal grandfather's side be considered Zera Yisrael? Thank you,
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43 views

If a thief comes by day may one kill him in self defence

The gemoro psochim 2b mentions only about a 'ganev' (stealthy thief) coming at night that one may kill the thief even if he is not sure this thief is about to kill him. What about if this thief came ...
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44 views

May one walk alone at night

Tosfos on psochim 2a discusses about the brothers of yosef why they were not allowed to go by night. Tosfos says that the reason was because they were not familiar with the territory and they could ...
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46 views

We know that a son cannot claim self defence if he kills his father who is about to rob him. What about his mother

The g'moro in psochim 2b says that a father who goes to rob his son, will not kill him and therefore if the son kills his father he cannot claim self defence. What about if a mother goes to rob her ...
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38 views

Can one say the b'rocho of borai meorai hoeash on stars

On motsai shabbos we make havdala and also make a b'rosho borai morai hoeish on what is called today the havdala. If one does not have one and no means of making a 'light' can one make the b'rosho on ...
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47 views

Examining the Zav

Does anyone know of any rabbinic sources (Talmudic/midrashic) that indicate that a Zav would go to a halakhic authority to be examined regarding his Zivah?
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36 views

Eruv t'chumin for dependants

One can 'force' a dependant to make an eruv t'chumin. Since they are only made for a dvar mitsva this is considered like forcing him to do a mitsva which one who has the power, has to do. Normally ...
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58 views

one who says something in the name of the person who originally said it

The Sages (Avos 6:6) teach: ha'omer davar b'shem omro ("one who says something in the name of the person who originally said it"). We have learned that one who says something in the name of the one ...
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37 views

Is one allowed to sin a small sin to save himself from bringing a Chatas?

The Gemara in Shabbos says that Bibi bar Abaye asks if one can violate a Rabbinic commandment (unsticking a loaf from an oven) to save oneself from being "chayav a chattas". The Gemara says that ...
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56 views

Why is the seder “beseder” (in order)?

Is there any halachic reason why we do the seder in the order that we do? It seems that many of the components of the seder are halachically mandated, but is there any halachic mandate that we do them ...
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59 views

How should the items on the noticeboard in the synagogue be arranged?

On a board where the name of the week’s parsha and the relevant additions in the prayers are displayed as shown here for example, is there an order of placing the items accepted by halacha or minhag? ...
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53 views

Does the mitzvah of Tzedek require poverty and inequality in society?

If we accept that giving to the poor and an emphasis on Tzedek are Mitzvot that is repeatedly noted within Tanakh - for example some Midrashic commentary suggests that the sin of Sodom was actually a ...
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51 views

Does a Rov have to answer a question?

In the past I asked what responsibility does a person have to look up and investigate an answer to a question that he wasn't able to answer. I'd now like to ask a similar question with a few points. ...
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181 views

Hamapil immediately before sleep, but what about undressing?

Generally, we are supposed to say hamapil beracha immediately before going to bed, with no interruption. How do we reconcile this with the idea that we should be dressed appropriately to make a ...
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65 views

Bet HaMikdash and Olam Haba - Rambam

If, as the Rambam says, Olam Haba is something that comes after the days of Mashiach and the ressurrection of the dead, and if it is a completely spiritual reality - as I read in his Treatise on ...
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141 views

May I let my web browser save my browsing session during Chol Hamoed?

To save electricity, I like to shut down my computer every night. First, I quit my Web browser. My Web browser is set up so that, when I quit, it automatically saves my session: a list of open tabs ...
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160 views

Is there an 'Inyan of Upsherin for girls?

Upsherin is cutting a boy's hair at or about the age of three for the first time. Is there any 'Inyan (idea) of an Upsherin for girls? Why or why not?
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40 views

Holy Cities in Israel

It's almost a colloquialism that there are four holy cities in Israel. If, indeed, there is some significant message derived from the historical importance of these cities that imparts in them some ...

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