20
votes
18answers
913 views

About what were rabbis ahead of the times?

I have heard claims that experts in the world of Torah were significantly ahead of their counterparts in the world of natural science (or mathematics, or psychology, or…) in that they knew X ...
1
vote
2answers
22 views

Are Llamas Kosher?

Being that llamas are ruminates it seems to me that they clearly chew their cud. But I have not found any definitive information on whether or not the have fully split hooves. Furthermore, they are ...
2
votes
1answer
31 views

Why is the Cohen allowed to be called first and for maftir on Shabbat?

Is it only on Shabbat that a Cohen can be called up for an Aliyah for maftir?
3
votes
2answers
57 views

text for Rav Kook's positive viduy?

It was quoted in a class that I was in once that Rav Kook has a text for a positive viduy where he takes the normal expression of sin and inverts it to talk about what we have done right. What is the ...
10
votes
3answers
181 views

Why is Yitzchak spelled with a “sin” in Tehillim 105:9?

I just came across this strange variant spelling this morning. I've been in the habit of reciting Tikkun HaKlali recently and saw this in Artscroll's Tehillim this past Shabbat. Thinking it was a ...
5
votes
3answers
143 views

Watching TV on weekdays (not on shabbat)

Is it generally allowed to watch TV at my home (I am male and living alone)? I wrote "generally," meaning watching on a regular weekday (i.e. not Shabbat or Holiday) and just watching normal programs, ...
-1
votes
0answers
29 views

Were the early Hebrews technically a African tribe? [on hold]

Hebrew is one of the earliest Afroasiatic languages. It has been argued that the Hebrews were a offshoot of the Canaanites, even akin to them. It is nearly undesputable that the Canaanites were ...
0
votes
0answers
25 views

Are there any people worshipping Baal today? [on hold]

I hear much mention in Scripture against the worship of Baal (the false god). He appears to be a snare to the ancient Israelites many a times. My question is, is there any Baal worshipers today or has ...
1
vote
1answer
131 views

Why Bless on Gum if some say not to

According to Hacham Ovadia Yosef there is a Halacha of Safek Berachot Lehakel meaning that in any case that there is one (or two I can't remember but it doesn't matter for my example) Posekim that ...
3
votes
4answers
235 views

Using a non-kosher rotating pizza oven

A countertop rotating pizza oven has a turntable on which pizza is placed. It has two heating elements: one heats from below the turntable, like a hot plate. A heating element above broils a section ...
5
votes
3answers
232 views

“Blias” in today's pots and pans

Throughout all of Yoreh Deah Chelek Alef and Hilchos Pesach (and perhaps other places in Shulchan Aruch as well) we see the idea of "blias" ("absorptions") by celim. That is to say there is a "taste" ...
5
votes
5answers
205 views

Customary foods for the erev Yom Kippur meal(s)

Are there any customary foods to eat* at the meal(s) eaten on erev Yom Kippur? If so, what are they? *other than meat, which is mentioned in the answer to the linked question.
1
vote
0answers
32 views

Finding the right fit. [on hold]

Im going to try to ask this question but you have to know that I have a hard time formulating questions and also getting to the point. Ok so the question is how does one find and join the Jewish ...
1
vote
0answers
24 views

Seeking recordings of Rabbi Yitzhak Meir Kogan

I am looking for tapes or CDs by Rabbi Yitzhak Meir Kogan olove sholom from Detroit. Where can I can buy some lectures from such a prolific Rabbi?
2
votes
0answers
46 views

Should shma be read in the special trop?

On the Yamim Noraim, a special trop is used for reading the Torah. For someone who generally reads shma with the trop, would it be preferable to use the special trop if possible? I ask because ...
2
votes
1answer
25 views

Why Psalm 130 for Aseres Yemei Teshuva?

I've seen the custom quoted in many siddurim to recite Psalm 130 (שיר המעלות ממעמקים), with the Ark open, between ישתבח and ברכו during עשרת ימי תשובה. Why this Psalm? What special relevance does it ...
1
vote
3answers
47 views

Path of the Just - what does שיתברר ויתאמת mean?

The Mesilat Yesharim starts off: יסוד החסידות ושרש העבודה התמימה הוא שיתברר ויתאמת אצל האדם מה חובתו (Translation: The foundation of saintliness and the root of perfection in the service of ...
2
votes
1answer
45 views

Psalm 121 - when is it said?

What is typically the association for Psalm 121? Is it associated specifically with the yamim noraim (Days of Awe), or is there another association?
0
votes
1answer
25 views

Is Psalm 118:19 associated with Hallel and Yamim Noraim?

Is the verse פתחו לי שערי צדק from Psalms 118:19 associated with Hallel? When is typically recited and does it have any connection to ימים הנוראים?
6
votes
2answers
123 views

Why is 'misod chachomim unevonim' sometimes said and sometimes omitted in the repetition of the Amidah?

In Askenazi communities, the piece beginning 'misod chachomim unevonim' is said at the repetition of the Amidah at Shacharis when there are piyuttim (except Purim) and on Musaf on Yomim Noraim as well ...
3
votes
1answer
25 views

Recordings of Baer and Lewandowski

Chazzanim Avraham Baer z"l and Louis Lewandowski a"h created some of the most important books of chazzanut of the 19th century. בעל תפלה oder Der Praktische Vorbeter and Kol Rinnah U'Tefillah recorded ...
9
votes
1answer
173 views

Piyyutim on Yomim Noraim. Why do we split phrases against their meaning?

Why is it that in the davenning for Yomim Noraim, we split up the phrases in many of the piyyutim against their real meaning? For example, in “Vechol maaminim shehu…” (p 538 Artscroll Machzor For Yom ...
2
votes
3answers
129 views

Simanim are eaten when?

When are the Simanim on Rosh HAshanah(symbolic foods) eaten before washing on the Bread or after and at which meal and why?
5
votes
2answers
28 views

Why do we say עושה השלום during yamim nora'im?

I'm struggling to find a reason/meaning behind saying 'עושה השלום' with a 'ה' at the end of amidah and during kaddish for the yamim nora'im period. I have heard (unverified source) that there is ...
2
votes
2answers
17 views

Who is the Moreh Nevuchim for?

Did the Rambam write the Moreh Nevuchim for a target audience? Was it only for "perplexed" people or did he write it for everyone, or perhaps an individual?
3
votes
1answer
51 views

What texts should be studied after services on erev Yom Kippur?

I understand that there is a tradition to do some learning following Shul on erev Yom Kippur. What texts are recommended for studying during this time?
6
votes
3answers
62 views

Arba'a Ve'esrim Ushlosh Meyot - mi yodeya?

Who knows three hundred twenty-four? ?ארבעה ועשרים ושלוש מאות - מי יודע The traditional Passover song "Echad - mi yodeya" implies a possible presupposition that there is a Jewish significance to be ...
0
votes
0answers
15 views

Ayin hora on kids

I was wondering if there is an issue with sending a (gentile) co-worker a picture of their kid. For that matter, what's the deal with hanging kids' pictures up around your desk...?
1
vote
1answer
21 views

What are the major regions relevant to Ashkenazi minhagim?

Motivating this question are the instructions in the ArtScroll Siddur for the two versions of kel erekh apayim, said on weekdays before taking out the sefer torah: one is identified as “נוסח אשכנז, ...
0
votes
2answers
43 views

Why GOD asked Jewish High Priest to have a Golden Plate with the inscription “HOLINESS TO THE LORD”?

Why is the High Priest asked to have a Golden Plate with the inscription "HOLINESS TO THE LORD" worn on his mitre (Exo. 28:36)? is there any significant meaning in it? In Exo. 28:38 it says "Aaron ...
4
votes
4answers
843 views

What is the purpose of the mosquito?

Everything created was created for the purpose of serving G-d's ultimate plan for his creation which is to acknowledge G-d. What lesson or use can we make from mosquitos?
5
votes
1answer
65 views

How can yeast be kosher lǝPesach?

I was once reading the ingredients on a pack of Bissli (with a Pesach hashgacha) and saw that it contained yeast. How can this be?
2
votes
5answers
66 views

Asara Umatayim - mi yodeya?

Who knows two hundred ten? Please cite/link your sources, if possible. At some point at least twenty-four hours from now, I will: Upvote all interesting answers. Accept the best answer. Go on to ...
-1
votes
4answers
53 views

Proofs from scripture that God could not be a man

If some man came and claimed to be God, what proofs could you establish from scripture/text that this would not be possible?
8
votes
7answers
177 views

What's her husband doing at the gates in the middle of her song?

Eishes Chayil is a song sung traditionally on Friday nights. It's the last 22 verses of Mishlei/Proverbs. It speaks about a "Woman of Valor", and literally does nothing but sing her praises. Well, ...
2
votes
1answer
47 views

Is Aishet Chayel always the appropriate blessing for the wife

I have seen a tradition that has husbands using Proverbs 31 ("Aishet Chayel") to bless their wives, with children rising up and going to the mother and kissing her. This text even has reference to ...
6
votes
1answer
101 views

Kaparos for a pregnant woman — why the extra chicken?

From Sidur Tehilas Hashem, Sidur Rav Amram, and Nitei Gavriel Hilchos Yom Hakipurim 10:20 you take additional chickens for Kaparos for a pregnant lady in order to cover the fetus. What sin (or sins) ...
2
votes
1answer
52 views

Can the chickens swung over a pregnant woman's head for Kaparos be swung consecutively?

When swinging 3 chickens (or 2 chickens depending on one's custom) over a pregnant woman's head for Kaparos, must the chickens be swung simultaneously or may they be swung consecutively (so as to ...
5
votes
2answers
88 views

Shiurim on Approaches of Meforshim

Does anyone know of any good shiurim that I could find online that go through the approaches of the various meforshim on Torah?
0
votes
2answers
145 views

Aishes Chayil talking about the Torah?

Rashi in Mishlay (31,31), the source for the song, says that the song is talking about the Torah. Where in the text of the song itself are the proofs for this theory and explanation of how the text ...
4
votes
2answers
64 views

“I'm just not a 'learning guy'”

I'd like to know if the Torah speaks to the idea that of person simply not being a "learning guy". I don't mean that he doesn't want to learn anything at all (a Jew must koveyah ittim) or that he is ...
1
vote
0answers
35 views

Can a Chazan silently or aloud say Yom Kippur piyutim in English?

Some shuls (such as mine) do many sections of most piyutim silently. Is the Shat"z allowed to do the silent portions in English and just say the ending of the piyut aloud in Hebrew? Related - many of ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Is there a problem with extra aliyot on Simchat Torah?

Follow up on related question seven-aliyot-for-vzot-habracha: Gemarah Megilllah (Don't recall exact location) says that on Yom Tov falling on a weekday, we should have 5 aliyot and are not allowed to ...
7
votes
2answers
98 views

Why redeem hekdesh?

Kind of related to What is my relationship to an object once I have pledged it as hekdesh? Why would somebody pledge something to hekdesh and then redeem it when he could just donate money directly? ...
4
votes
1answer
55 views

Teshuva and non-Jews?

The Rambam explains the basic requirements of doing teshuva and seeking forgiveness from another person: acknowledging the transgression, making amends, and seeking forgiveness (presumably publicly ...
5
votes
1answer
36 views

Selichot origins

In what year (CE) did saying selichot in Elul begin? In what year were they made a standard addition to prayer books? Looking for an academic answer, not the yeshivahish one. And did Sephardim start ...
0
votes
1answer
32 views

What is Hatarat Nidui

Today in schul (erev Rosh Hashana) there is a procedure done after hatarat nedarim that seems to release people from cherem. The beit din's saying in the hatarat nedarim process removes one from ...
9
votes
2answers
403 views

What do you do if your Shabbos host serves chocolate chip challah?

Based on this shiur from R. Sobolofsky, chocolate chip challah is no different from chocolate babka or other cake and thus has the bracha of mezonos If that is the case, one would only be able to ...
8
votes
3answers
126 views

How can I find meaning in saying selichot?

I have always had a problem connecting with the selichot. In my shul they are said in a very rushed, impassionate fashion, mainly due to the need for people to get to work. I don't understand most of ...
2
votes
1answer
58 views

The Rambam's source for the first Ikkar

The Rambam's first Principle of Faith is that Hashem is the Cause of all other existence and His existence is independent of all other existence. To me it seems the best source for this would have ...

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