All Questions

5
votes
1answer
71 views

A good beginner study Talmud for a student

I am looking to begin studying the Talmud. I have grown up a reform Jew and know most of the basic principals of Judaism, but I am looking to go deeper into the religion, ultimately with the goal of ...
7
votes
0answers
62 views

Did each tribe of Israel serve a specific purpose?

I understand that the tribe of Levi were Priests, and the tribe of Benjamin were solders (Slingers to be more specific). But is there a general trait that is distinguished in each of the twelve (12) ...
0
votes
0answers
55 views

Are the animals killed for tefillin killed humanely? [duplicate]

Are the cows used to make leather for Tefillin killed humanely? I don't want to pray with something bound to me when that something was made from an inhumanely killed animal.
3
votes
0answers
74 views

Should I alter my schedule to daven Minchah with a minyan?

Is it better to wait to daven Minchah K’tanah if there’s a chance one could be finished working before sunset? Or is it okay to daven Minchah Gedolah and join the minyan for Ma’ariv, even though one ...
5
votes
3answers
388 views

Source that Avraham's tent was open on all sides?

What is the source for the idea (I recall learning as a child) that Avraham's tent was open on all 4 directions to welcome guests?
6
votes
1answer
38 views

Why don't we detail the wine-libations during Mussaf?

During mussaf, after the verses of the appropriate offering are recited, we add: ומנחתם ונסכיהם כמדובר, שלושה עשרונים לפר ושני עשרונים לאיל ועשרון לכבש ויין כנסכו And the flour offerings and ...
2
votes
0answers
32 views

Can I send something to Israel with a Jew who is flying on shabbat? [closed]

The thing that's being sent will be given to the traveller well before shabbat and the flight leaves before shabbat.
2
votes
2answers
66 views

Can tea made without cli shlishi be drunk bdieved?

When making tea/instant coffee/hot chocolate etc. on Shabbat, it is supposed to be done in three vessels, so that the boiling water cools off and doesn't cook the powder. The urn is the first, then ...
6
votes
0answers
51 views

Intentionally using a grace period on a rental

I recently rented a bike for a few hours, and the person in charge of the rental told us that we have "X number of hours, and a 15 minute grace period," followed by the warning that if we don't return ...
2
votes
1answer
91 views

What is the bracha on shechita?

Is there a bracha (blessing) said for shechita (kosher slaughter)? If so, what is the bracha? Is the blessing said before or after the animal is slaughtered?
0
votes
1answer
41 views

Genetically Breeding a Parah Aduma [duplicate]

Can genetic breeding make cows red? If so would it be acceptable as a Parah Aduma?
4
votes
1answer
59 views

Source of the term בכתמים שומעין להקל

In the halachos of Niddah, there is a term which I have come across not infrequently. The term is בכתמים שומעין להקל, which roughly translated means "in [the halachos of blood] stains we listen to ...
5
votes
1answer
466 views

Is a bracha said when eating non-food items (e.g. paper)?

If someone wants to eat something that is not considered food (e.g. paper), is a bracha required? Obviously if one is, it would be shehacol.
3
votes
1answer
87 views

Kohen-accessible Cenotaph

Scenario: An architect is building an extension onto a cemetery. As it will engulf the section traditionally reserved for Kohanim, he wishes to build an "overpass" with cenotaphs holding the ...
1
vote
1answer
43 views

This is on the RamBam isurei biah Chapter 15 - Halacha 25…Asufi of possible Gentile lineage?

It is stated in Rambam Isurei Biah - Chapter 15 - Halacha 25: When an asufi is found in a city inhabited by gentiles, whether the majority are gentiles or the majority are Jews, the child is ...
7
votes
0answers
121 views

Zohar Origins - Why is it accepted as emes? [duplicate]

I've read arguments and counter arguments for the origins of the Zohar and I'm perplexed. I accept the truths in kabbalah and chassidut, but I didn't realize how it sort of just appeared one day in ...
5
votes
1answer
62 views

Understanding a Fine Point in the Rambam's Laws of Yibbum

In MT, Hilkhot Yibbum veChalitzah 7:11, the Rambam presents the case of three brothers, two of whom are married to two sisters and the third of whom is married to an unrelated woman. In the event that ...
1
vote
1answer
23 views

Why did Yaakov only mention sheep dying?

In Bereshis 33:13 it says יג וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלָיו, אֲדֹנִי יֹדֵעַ כִּי-הַיְלָדִים רַכִּים, וְהַצֹּאן וְהַבָּקָר, עָלוֹת עָלָי; וּדְפָקוּם יוֹם אֶחָד, וָמֵתוּ כָּל-הַצֹּאן. Yaakov initially ...
4
votes
2answers
420 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 ...
7
votes
2answers
89 views

Did Jewish scholars acknowledge/appreciate classical music?

Were there any Jewish scholars who, based on Jewish scholarship, acknowledged classical music (be it baroque to neo-classical) in a positive light and/or ever make mention of specific composers or ...
7
votes
1answer
76 views

Is a machine written sefer torah distinguishable from Machine Matzos

The Jewish University in Berlin has developed a machine written quill* on parchment Sefer Torah. The report from the BBC takes it for granted that such a Sefer Torah is posul because it lacks the ...
2
votes
2answers
58 views

Did Avraham invite the angels into his house?

Avraham sits at the entrance to his tent waiting for guests. When the three angels arrive he runs out to greet them and pleads that they stay. He then tells them (Bereishit 18:4): יֻקַּח-נָא ...
4
votes
1answer
66 views

Recommend introductory resources on Jewish traditions in the Balkans

A couple of years ago I found out that I have some Jewish ancestry when investigating my family's history. I know that my great grandfather perished in the holocaust, but I was led to believe that it ...
10
votes
1answer
64 views

Does Shmita apply in Jordan?

Since the East bank of the Jordan River was given to shevet Reuven as an inheritance, was Shmita observed there as well? If so, does shmita still apply there?
7
votes
1answer
511 views

If Lev Melech B'yad Hashem, why bother voting?

We have a concept in Jewish thought that rulers do not have free will concerning public affairs, based on the verse in Mishlei 21:1 'לב מלך ביד ה, the heart of a king is in the hand of Hashem (See ...
0
votes
0answers
73 views

Was this person ALWAYS a mamzer, or did he become one?

There are three elements to this question: A certain get document has an irregularity and one could conceivably rule that it acceptable or unacceptable. The woman who the get was issued to remarried ...
10
votes
1answer
115 views

What is the rationale to continue saying Yekum Purkan in its present state

In Yekum Purkan, we pray for the well-being of the rabbis in Bavel, the Reishei Chalei, & the Reish Galvasa (commonly pronounced Galussa). This specific prayer for non-existent people and ...
3
votes
1answer
115 views

What is this line about Rachel referring to?

What is this line in the classic song Mama Rochel talking about? But when nightfall came, Destiny betrayed, The veil concealing another. Yet her sister's shame, not her shattered dreams, ...
6
votes
2answers
247 views

Is cold weather bad for tefillin?

The winter season is around the corner and I am wondering if it's damaging to leave tefillin out in the cold (I usually leave mine in a room with no heat). Would this ruin the tefillin because of ...
1
vote
1answer
25 views

Meaning of “the lame and the blind”

I read somewhere recently that the "the lame and the blind" in 2 Samuel 5 is a reference to the patriachs, and that Abraham had made an agreement with the Philistines not to lay claim to Jerusalem in ...
6
votes
2answers
45 views

Why is Taus Akum Different?

So the Shulchan Aruch Choshen Mishpat (348:2) says: כל הגונב אפילו שוה פרוטה עובר על לאו דלא תגנובו וחייב לשלם אחד הגונב ממון ישראל או הגונב ממון של עכו"ם ואחד הגונב מגדול או מקטן:‏ הגה: ...
3
votes
1answer
176 views

Creating a crowd-sourced database of non-dairy OU-D products

Several questions/answers on this site have pointed out that the OU-D hechsher does not always mean that the product is actually dairy. (Here and here, for example.) According to this answer, the ...
9
votes
1answer
65 views

Why was the knowledge of good and evil embodied in the fruit of a tree?

In the story of creation man is forbidden from eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Why was the knowledge of good and evil embodied in a tree specifically?
12
votes
1answer
130 views

Can I trust a random internet user?

Does the halacha of עד אחד נאמן באיסורין (a single witness is trusted in matters of prohibition) apply to a random internet users? If someone presents themselves as being a practicing Jew, can I take ...
0
votes
0answers
33 views

What is the source for placing two menorot at the front of the shul, one on either side of the Aron?

Many shuls have menorot at the front of the shul on either side of the aron. I understand that basically this is a zecher l'mikdash. However, is there a source for the minhag to place specifically two ...
4
votes
0answers
32 views

Why does the Kohen Gadol need to divorce his wife in such a complicated manner?

On Yom Kippur, the Kohen Gadol must be married to exactly one wife. We are also concerned about her passing away. So the Gemara suggests that he gives a get to one wife on condition that the other ...
2
votes
1answer
37 views

Why the wait between God's creation of the tongs to the first metalworker?

It says in Pirkei Avot 5:6 that God made the first pair of tongs immediately before creation. The first person to make metal tools was Tubal Cain, who lived in the generation before the flood. Why ...
5
votes
2answers
81 views

Shiva Ve'esrim Ushlosh Meyot - mi yodeya?

Who knows three hundred twenty-seven? ?שבעה ועשרים ושלוש מאות - מי יודע The traditional Passover song "Echad - mi yodeya" implies a possible presupposition that there is a Jewish significance to be ...
1
vote
1answer
90 views

Are there any Lubavitchers that believe that their Rebbe more than mortal

I have heard that many people think that some Lubavitchers (obviously mistakenly) think that their rebbe is somehow more immortal than everyone else. Does anyone know if this is true and to the extent ...
5
votes
1answer
217 views

May a halachically 'Jewish' Atheist work as a 'Shabbat goy'?

I am aware that in Judaism, adherents are forbidden from performing many types of work on the Sabbath/Shabbat/Shabbos. Although it has come to my attention that some consider the employment of a ...
3
votes
0answers
54 views

Advice for keeping tzitzit away from the toilet

When I sit on the toilet (especially public toilets with a long "snout"), I often find myself in an uncomfortable situation trying to keep my tzitzit away from the bowl. My strategy has always been ...
1
vote
0answers
27 views

Is shaking hands with opposite sex permitted at a business meeting? [duplicate]

I am sure many people face this awkwardness and confusion when facing a hand shake moment by the opposite gender. Of course I am referring to business meetings. I would like to know what the Halakha ...
6
votes
2answers
325 views

What's the Bishul Akum heter for hard-boiled eggs?

I've seen prepackaged hard-boiled eggs in the grocery store with an OU. As eggs are relatively inedible raw, what is the heter vis-a-vis bishul akum for them? (Or are they having a Jewish mashgiach ...
-1
votes
1answer
42 views

Shul, Children and Chinuch

Someone once told me parents should not bring their children (i.e. that are below chinuch – they are not capable of being quiet on their own) to shul if they are going to disturb. It is also better ...
8
votes
2answers
867 views

Why is it important that God created the first pair of tongs?

It says in Pirkei Avot 5:6 that God made the first pair of tongs immediately before creation. Could not one have made tongs out of bone or wood wrapped in leather or made with a metal, such as gold, ...
0
votes
3answers
135 views

is there a list of mitzvos which show respect? [closed]

I'm looking for a list of Mitzvos which show how important respect is. I have a few, but would like to know all others. The ones I have are: Kibud av ve'eim Mipnei seiva takum
4
votes
1answer
63 views

What happened to Siman 168?

If you look in the Tur Yoreh Deah Siman 168 (so too the Shulchan Aruch), you'll notice that there's nothing there. Was it lost sometime in history? It looks like the Shulchan Aruch also didn't have ...
4
votes
0answers
48 views

Praying for the moon to become bigger

During Kiddush Levanah, a brief prayer is recited, that God "fill the defect of the moon, that there should be no more diminution thereof, and that the moon's light be like the sun's light and like ...
0
votes
1answer
89 views

Not inquiring into heresy?

Is there some sort of injunction against inquiring into heresy? I am pretty sure there is an issur d'oraissa to inquire into Avodah Zarah? Thank you (By "inquire" I mean to investigate their beliefs ...
2
votes
1answer
144 views

Could we drive an Ebola patient to quarantine on Shabbos?

I don't think anybody would argue that Ebola is a חולי שיש בו סכנה (an illness that involves danger to life)1, which means that we not only may but must violate Shabbos in order to provide care for an ...

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