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12

See also this letter by the Lubavitcher Rebbe on this subject, in which he states: It is my firm belief that the sun revolves around the earth, as I have also declared publicly on various occasions and in discussion with professors specializing in this field of science. He also explains why he believed this way based on the Theory of Relativity.


9

According to this article at Chabad.org, based on the teachings of the late Lubavitcher Rebbe zy"a, each generation builds on the achievements of the previous generation. So that even though we may be on a lower spiritual level, we are still furthering the cause of creation and bringing it closer to its ultimate goal. I think that this is similar to the ...


7

As the Rambam codifies in Hilchos Avoda Zara 3:5, only four activities are "objectively" idolatry when done in honor of something other than G-d, and forbidden to do to any idol. 1) Prostration, 2) Animal Sacrifice, 3) Incense burning, 4) Libations. Outside of those four things, it is only idolatry if done as part of the normal service of the idol. So an ...


6

Talmud / avoda zora 3A אין הקב"ה בא בטרוניא עם בריותיו the Holy One, blessed be He, does not deal imperiously(sovereignty, despotic rule.) with His creatures. midrash / shimois rabba 34 אין הקב"ה בא בטרחות עם בריותיו לא בא על האדם אלא לפי כחו "G-d does not make matters difficult for His creatures; He expects a person to perform according to his ...


6

David Rosen of Emory University School of Law writes as follows on page 44. Regarding destruction of homes of living terrorists these actions seem easy to justify under Jewish Law. Ezra 10:8 mentions confiscation of property as a criminal sanction when one disobeys lawful orders. The court, under the biblical commandment, may expropriate ...


5

In some Yeshivos, they deliberately choose Masechtas that are the least practical, as they understand this to be the best manifestation of Torah Lishma - learning Torah just for the sake of learning Torah, and not for any other purpose. I believe this is one of the reasons that Brisker Yeshivos learn Kodshim.


5

In every tractate, there are parts that are "practical" either directly or indirectly. I'll explain by examples: The first two tractate I learned was Bava Metzi'ah . It talks about two people holding a tallit and arguing about who gets what. OK, How often do 2 people argue about who gets a tallit, unless it's in shul (and then, the SHUL owns the tallit - ...


5

I'm going to assume that this 'inability to believe in God' comes from a conviction that God doesn't exist. The question is, should a person be faulted for disbelieving, if he thinks that believing in God is philosophically unjustified? First off, I should mention the Rashash to Shabbos 31a, who writes that a person is only considered a heretic after fully ...


4

The Chazon Ish himself says that this is the common view among Chassidim. Indeed the Baal Shem Tov is well known to have defined it in the way the Chazon Ish says not to. It should be pointed out that the Chazon Ish's characterization is an oversimplification of the view. In this article, R. Shlomo Brody discusses various sources brought by R. Daniel Stein. ...


4

In his book Mashiach, Rabbi Immanuel Schochet brings several reasons. See there for more details and sources: "There is an obvious progression of time which of itself brings us closer to Mashiach and continuously enhances the inherent potential for redemption, in spite of our inferiority." The fact that this generation is so much worse than the earlier ...


4

The Talmud asks a very similar question, on Sanhedrin 71a: אלא לא היה ולא עתיד להיות ולמה נכתב דרוש וקבל שכר [...] תניא, עיר הנדחת לא היתה ולא עתידה להיות ולמה נכתבה דרוש וקבל שכר [...]תניא בית המנוגע לא היה ולא עתיד להיות ולמה נכתב דרוש וקבל שכר However, this [the Ben Sorrer Umoreh, the rebellious son of [t Deut. 21 18 u]] never happened, and ...


3

In Tanya Chapter 5, this question is discussed. There it's explained that Torah is Chochmas Hashem - Hashem's Wisdom, and therefor learning any Torah is an intense union/connection with Hashem. Understanding His Wisdom is valuable in its own right, regardless of whether it's relevant or not. (See the quote below for more elaboration). דרך משל: כשאדם מבין ...


3

The Mabit writes that the idea of a בן (son) comes from the word בנין (structure) because the son builds onto the accomplishments of his ancestors. So we are always adding on to what came before us. I once heard the following "mashal": A professor took out a bottle, and a pile of rocks, a pile of pebbles, a pile of sand, and a can of beer. He first ...


3

The Chafetz Chaim compares it to the laws of the redemption of fields (Vayikra 25:50), similar to our system of a mortgage redemption, where the price of redemption nearer to the end of the term will be a lot less than earlier on. Similarly, where earlier generations would need huge merits to bring Moshiach earlier, now that we are nearer to the time that he ...


3

A source is Rabbi Nachman M'Breslov Zatzal לקו"ת מ"ז זכור תמיד: לעולם לא יושם בפניך מכשול שאין בכוחך להתגבר עליו


2

I've read an article (in Russian) that says that according to misrash (not cited which) if Eisav was making all right then 12 tribes were born from both brothers, 6 from Eisav and 6 from Yaakov. Translation of the relevant part: And if Eisav did his job properly, he would retain its status as a descendant of Yitzchak, and the Jewish people, says the ...


2

This question is the subject of a teshuva of Rav Ovadia Yosef in Yabia Omer 1:41-42, and he returns to this subject in many later teshuvos as well. He writes regarding this question that דבר זה הוא מקצוע גדול בתורה (so imagine this question upvoted by R. Ovadia Yosef). First of all, it isn't so clear that we actually do 'pasken' like the Shut min ...


2

There is a seffer called Bitachon Ish who brings proofs to the Chazzon Ish's opinion from earlier sources. http://www.hebrewbooks.org/51363


2

Two historical narratives should suffice as an answer. Moshe received the Torah even his forefathers could not. Shlomo built the Beis Hamikdosh even though David could not.


2

Without looking at any commentaries on this passage, I'll just write my own interpretation, based only on text itself (and possibly accidentally integrating a number of lectures I've heard on it in the past). Let's break down the Gemara, bit by bit, and see if any of your questions remain: אמר להם הקב"ה במאי עסקתם God said to them (the gentiles), ...


1

in principle yes, as the verse you quoted says. But God has foresight and knows how to plan things so that it never happens. It's kind of like playing chess with a chess grandmaster. Although, you have free will, he can nevertheless force you into any situation he wants. How much more so for God who knows ahead of time what you will think and do, that He ...


1

I'm not sure where i heard this, but part of it is in expectation and hope of when it will once again be relevant to us, bimheira b'yameinu. Also, the Gemara deals with much more than the specific topic it's about, including tangential laws, sayings, stories (agadah), etc.


1

There is a difference between respect and worship. Respect means that you are honoring something because it is important to you, and worship is when you perform a service to something that has power so that you will receive something in return.


1

I heard many years ago the following. Why do we constantly say "Zecher Lyitziyas Mitzrayim"? The answer was that just like in Mitzrayim when we were in the 49th level of impurity and Chazal say had we sunk any further we would of never been redeemed, so too we pray that even though we are on a lower level then previous generations Hashem should redeem us and ...


1

I understand that for someone to R"L lose his status as a Jew (from shulchan aruch harav/ yora daiya/ kuntres aharon/ 2.10 it seems that he is legally considered a non-Jew for everything except for marriage) he has to be michalel shabos (violate Shabbos) publicly. I understand that someone R"L for personal pleasure (not just to do something against G-D R"L ...


1

Two separate things happened: The Bekhora was sold (reminds me of how Abraham insisted on purchasing Me'arat haMakhpela). Isaac was cheated. However, it is wrong to approach the text of Genesis from the point of view of (alternative) history. The function of Genesis is to establish the position of man in this world, knowing of god (as in הכרה or ידיעה). ...


1

There are several Rishonim (collected in Encycolpedia Talmudis, but for example see the Raavid's comment on the Rambam Shofar Lulav V'Sukka 8:5 where he explicitly argues for his position because of Ruach HaKodesh - although he justifies it intellectually - see at the link the argument if the Raavid means it literally) that hold that the final Halacha is not ...


1

Good question. R' Chanina says Yesh Mazal Liyisrael and R' Yochanan says Ein Mazal Liyisrael. (Shabbos 156a) Rashi (on the topic) points out that both R' Chanina and R' Yochanan agree that the celestial bodies influence events in this world. However, R' Chanina views their influence as inescapable whereas R' Yochanan maintains that prayer or good deeds can ...


1

Rabbi Akiva Tatz has a speech about this in which he explains the concept in depth. His speech can be found at http://www.simpletoremember.com/media/a/the974generations-of-souls/


1

Try different avenues. Torah study about an ox goring a cow is not going to answer your question of faith. There's even a famous disagreement between the Rambam and the Ramban whether belief in Gd precludes the commandments of the torah altogether. Another avenue well worth pursuing is to study the divine wisdom exhibited in nature (as brought in the chovos ...



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