3
votes
1answer
213 views

What did Rambam say about non-Jews putting on tefilin?

My mother says she's Jewish and I am also, but I'm still worried that maybe I am not and she is not and her mother is not and just they don't know but believe to be. Is there anywhere that the Rambam ...
10
votes
5answers
595 views

How to reconcile Biblical Flood story vs science and history?

Genesis spends a good deal of time -- Chapters 6 through 11 -- discussing the "mabul mayim", a flood that killed all humanity outside the ark. Here is what the Torah's text says about the universality ...
16
votes
11answers
353 views
+100

Experience-based advice for focusing and slowing down prayers?

I tend to daven (pray) without sufficient focus and very quickly. In particular, I find that most of the time that I'm praying, my mind is on things other than the words that I'm saying. And, not that ...
2
votes
1answer
28 views

Books on Politics

Are there any books that provide a Jewish way of Politics? Anything that would possibly discuss types of governments, economic systems or what a politician should do would fit for what I am looking ...
-2
votes
1answer
40 views

Does wa tawrat in Jeremiah 8:8 means torah, namely the 5 books or Moshe?

Jeremiah said (I used KJV translation but the translations are about the same) How do ye say, We are wise, and the law of the LORD is with us? Lo, certainly in vain made he it; the pen of the ...
3
votes
3answers
65 views

Why not say tachanun until 2 Cheshvan?

It's recorded in most siddurim I've used that some people have the custom to skip tachanun on Isru Chag (the day after Sukkos), and start again the day after, while others don't resume saying it until ...
0
votes
0answers
8 views

How long does one have to say al hamichya? [duplicate]

After eating most food products that require the bracha of mezonos (= just those that come from the 5 grains, excluding rice and other grains [on which borei nefashos is made afterwards]), one needs ...
4
votes
3answers
286 views

Is there a time limit for Borei Nefashos and Beracha Me'en Shalosh?

It seems that there's a 72-minute period after eating in which one must bentch. Does this also apply for Borei Nefashos and Beracha Me'en Shalosh?
0
votes
0answers
12 views

Semicha Testing Info

I know that most Semicha Tests cover (aprox.) the laws of Basar B’Chalav, Ta’aruvos, Melicha, Shabbos, Pas Akum, Bishul Akum, Cholov Akum, and Tevilas Keilim. But is it tested all in one shot or do ...
0
votes
1answer
49 views

scientific transliteration - spelling - pesah vs pesach? (who spells it pessah?) [on hold]

we're all familiar with the spelling pesach. But I recently saw the word Pessah, I guess a name. I know there's the scientific transliteration that replaces chet with 'h' rather than 'ch'. But in ...
8
votes
2answers
138 views

Why does the Mishnah/Gemara begin with Masekhet Berakhot?

As mentioned (link 1, link 2) and I've seen on the ArtScroll Talmud series (though I don't have a picture to support the fact), the Mishnah/Gemara "begin" with Masekhet Berakhot. Why was this order ...
1
vote
1answer
20 views

Drasha Le'Chasuna Le'HaRamban

I'm looking for an online copy of "Drasha Le'Chasuna Le'HaRamban". I seem to have found one at some point in time and printed it out (picture below). (However, I might have gotten it from my friend's ...
8
votes
2answers
65 views

Why didn't Noach look out the window?

After all, a window was clearly part of the Ark's structure, as we see from: Genesis 6:16: צֹ֣הַר׀ תַּעֲשֶׂ֣ה לַתֵּבָ֗ה וְאֶל־אַמָּה֙ תְּכַלֶ֣נָּה מִלְמַ֔עְלָה וּפֶ֥תַח הַתֵּבָ֖ה בְּצִדָּ֣הּ ...
3
votes
2answers
39 views

Did Cain and Hevel have דעת?

Kayin and Hevel were born before Adam and Chava sinned and ate from the Tree of Knowledge. (See Rashi to 4:1.) Did Kayin and Hevel ever receive the understanding that their parents got from the ...
8
votes
2answers
207 views

Two Days of Yom Tov for Visitors

Assuming the reason for two days Yom Tov is because messengers could not reach those places in time to tell them the days of Rosh Chodesh, why is it that if someone visits Israel, but doesn't plan on ...
10
votes
5answers
3k views

Why does belief in Judaism require irrationality?

In conversations with Rabbis, and in watching debates between Rabbis and atheists, I have often found that the response to questions which attack Judaism either on the basis of some of its perceived ...
1
vote
2answers
19 views

Significance of Noach's actions upon leaving the ark

The whole world has just been destroyed due to the failures of the generation of Noach. Noach and his family live for many days in the ark and after the waters subside they leave. Noach builds an ...
2
votes
0answers
44 views

Why believe in the revelation at Sinai other than the “Kuzari mesora” argument?

I was reading this post the other day, and came across a comment by user DoubleAA who stated in the comments something to the effect of "if the only reason you believe is because of the Kuzari ...
5
votes
1answer
173 views

Drinking from a drinking fountain throughout the day

This question deals with someone who has a cup of a drink and carries it around all day long, possibly refilling it, etc. I am wondering, for someone who drinks from a drinking fountain every time he ...
4
votes
1answer
45 views

Learning while the Chazzan recites piyutim

During the Chazzan's repetition of the Shemoneh Esrei, one is generally required to pay absolute attention and avoid learning etc. What about when the Chazzan is reciting piyutim during his ...
0
votes
0answers
46 views

How should a shul determine its hashkafa?

How should a shul determine its hashkafa? Is it the hashkafa of the community at large, or the rabbinate - even if they do not always seem to be identical?
3
votes
0answers
43 views

is it ok to use the walls of the sukka as a hanger

Is it ok to have a nail in (sticking out of) the wall of the sukka from before sukkot and use it to hang a jacket during sukkot? Will it make a difference if the nail is facing in or out? A possible ...
-1
votes
1answer
38 views

Does everyone say the piyut addressing Af beri?

According to the opinion that Machnisei Rachamim should not be said as we don't pray to angels, is there a problem to address Af Beri? I haven't heard of anyone skipping that piyut.
8
votes
0answers
40 views

Threatening to sue with no intention to do so

Let's say that a person is rightfully owed a sum of money, and the debtor refuses to pay them. Can they threaten to take the person to Beis Din or a secular court, even if they have no intention of ...
5
votes
2answers
85 views

Government “swearing-in” ceremony

Typically in the US, members of Congress and other government officials are sworn in on a bible appropriate to their religion. Is it appropriate for Jews to be sworn in on a Tana"ch, or should some ...
-4
votes
1answer
85 views

Is there really evidence that the Rabbis changed the day's beginning from sunrise to sunset? [on hold]

The writing of the two Rabbis quoted below state that the Rabbis changed the start of the day from sunrise to sunset. Rabbi Drazin wrote that "we know for certain that the day began in the Temple at ...
1
vote
3answers
29 views

Rambam Kiddush HaChodesh - Chapter Six - halacha 5

a copy of a few lines from the halacha: Similarly, when the days of a lunar year are counted in groups of seven, according to the weekly cycle, there is a remainder of four days, eight hours, and 876 ...
4
votes
3answers
633 views

Okay to address a rabbi with “you”?

I find it awkward to constantly say "Rabbi" instead of "you" while in a conversation. For example: "Hello Rabbi. I once spoke with the Rabbi regarding X. The Rabbi said Y. I think that the ...
1
vote
1answer
58 views

The blessing שהחינו‎ for a new wrist watch?

If you acquire a new wrist watch, do you make the blessing Sheheheyyanu?
2
votes
0answers
45 views

Machlokes Hatanaim when Kriat Shema should be said

The first Blat of Berachot tells us about a Mahlokes when Krias Shema should be recited. There are almost 10 shitos there. What is the Machlokes-is there a Sevara for each shita? For instance, the ...
2
votes
0answers
22 views

Concerning the time when Esther must be read

The first Mishnah in Tractate Megilla says: מגילה נקראת באחד עשר, בשנים עשר, בשלושה עשר, בארבעה עשר, ובחמישה עשר--לא פחות ולא יתר. The Megilla is read sometimes on the 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th, ...
2
votes
0answers
20 views

sources that neatness brings brocho/mazal

I heard in a daf yomi shiur on the end of moed katan (27a ‘Couch of Fortune’) that Jews kept an extra neat bed for brocho/mazal. One of the reasons that he gave was that in general neatness brings ...
10
votes
1answer
158 views

How do soldiers in the IDF obey Deuteronomy 23:13?

The mitvah talks about ensuring every soldiers have a spade to cover their excrement. The mitvah seems to be pretty obsolete because by now we have toilets all over the place. So, how it's done? Do ...
1
vote
0answers
10 views

Do all printed kodesh materials require Geniza?

Case 1: I print out a nice Dvar Torah and read it to my family. Case 2: I print a english translation of something Kodesh. Case 3: I mistakenly print out a few pages from a sefer. I have no ...
3
votes
1answer
68 views

Multiple Olim for a single Aliyah

In the past, I have davened at a Chabad on Simchat Torah. Their custom is to call up multiple individuals per aliyah rather than having multiple kriot. The only other places I have seen this was at ...
4
votes
1answer
748 views

When did people living for 900 years start to look old?

In the early days of the world, the standard age of living was well into the hundreds, with many people living until they were 800 or 900. Being that people lived so long, when did they start to "look ...
5
votes
0answers
119 views

Hazi“v La”kh: what's behind the division?

The Talmud (Rosh Hashana 31a) tells us that the Haazinu song (Devarim 32) was sung weekly in the Temple and divided into six segments, given by the mnemonic HaZIV LaKh הזיו לך (where each letter is ...
12
votes
3answers
214 views

Punishment in this World or in the World To Come

It says that (in general) Hashem lets a righteous person suffer in this world to cleanse him from sins (so he will have no more sins in the World to Come), while Hashem lets a wicked person prosper in ...
5
votes
2answers
262 views

Bracha on breastmilk?

Should a child old enough to make brachos who is not weaned be encouraged to make a bracha on breastmilk? If so which one? Are there any direct sources for this?
9
votes
1answer
241 views

Chain of tradition for stories/parables told by Rashi

I've already asked one question about where Rashi got a particularly troubling interpretation of an obscure reference in the Gemara, telling a very detailed and gruesome story about R' Meir and his ...
1
vote
2answers
38 views

Why the difference between Tishrei and Nissan for tachanun?

As mentioned elsewhere on this site, we don't say tachanun during the entire month of Nissan, because a majority of the month is spent "in kedusha," skipping tachanun -- therefore we omit tachanun for ...
3
votes
2answers
67 views

A theological problem with the Miriam “Magdalene” story in Chagiga 4b

There is an interesting story at the bottom of Chagiga 4b, top of 5a. The Angel of Death is telling a Rabbi of an incident that happened. The AoD has an assistant. The AoD tells him to reap Miriam ...
2
votes
1answer
89 views

Innocent babies killed in flood

In Parasha Noach, why were presumably innocent babies killed in the Flood? I would appreciate if someone could provide some elucidation.
5
votes
5answers
294 views

Why does evil exist?

I realize this is a very common question, but the problem of evil is an important one, and as far as I can tell, has not been asked here. In short, why does G-d allow evil to exist?
6
votes
3answers
152 views

When do you say Hashem sefatai?

Before saying shemoneh esrei we say "Hashem, sefatai siftach u'fi yagid tehilasecha". Are you supposed to say those words A) Before you take the 3 steps back to start your shemoneh esrei B) One word ...
0
votes
1answer
36 views

What is the precise translation of the word ארשע?

The pasuk in Iyov 10:7 states: עַל דַּעְתְּךָ כִּי לֹא אֶרְשָׁע וְאֵין מִיָּדְךָ מַצִּיל Chabad.org translates: It is in Your knowledge that I will not be condemned, but no one can save ...
8
votes
1answer
180 views

In Chabad- Final Halachic Decidor

In the area of Orach Chaim, when there is no established Lubavitch Minhag, i.e. in a case which is not in the Shulchan Aruch Harav (for whatever reason), and is not discussed by any other Lubavitch ...
6
votes
3answers
109 views

Age of Universe and Shabbat

If one believes that our world is billions of years old, i.e. accepting the idea of each day in Sheshis Imei Berieshit (the Six Days of Creation) as eras and not literal days, then how does one ...
0
votes
1answer
116 views

Who are the original Jews? [closed]

Is the people running Israel at the moment the original Jews and was the letter J in the Greek or Hebrew alphabet?
4
votes
2answers
48 views

Why did the dor hamabul earn a painless death?

There are, apparently, 903 levels of death, and the term vayigva is one of them. According to some, it refers to the simple act of expiration -- the creation of a corpse. Others, like the Rashi ...

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