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18

The most famous instance of Jews choosing to follow only the written Torah without the oral rabbinic interpretations would be the Karaites who flourished from about 760 CE to 1100 CE. Today their numbers are relatively small. Wikipedia gives a worldwide estimate of about 45,000 people, but the source of their numbers is not given. Karaite Judaism is ...


11

The Kitzur Shulchan Aruch in 114:7 states: אָסוּר לִמְכּוֹר אֶת הֶחָמֵץ לְמוּמָר אוֹ לְמוּמֶרֶת; וְלֹא לְבֶן מוּמֶרֶת, אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁיְלָדַתּוּ מֵאֵינוֹ יְהוּדִי לְאַחַר שֶׁהֵמִירָה, כִּי לְעִנְיָן זֶה דִּינָם כְּמוֹ יִשְֹרָאֵל, וַהֲוֵי לֵהּ חֲמֵצוֹ שֶׁל יִשְֹרָאֵל שֶׁעָבַר עָלָיו הַפֶּסַח דְּאָסוּר בַּהֲנָאָה One may not sell one's Chametz to a Jew ...


9

I am not sure what you mean by a "halachically 'Jewish' Atheist". If you mean that he is Halachically Jewish, the fact that he claims to be an atheist is irrelevant, he is a Jew (as it says in Talmud Bavli Sanhedrin 44a, a Jew remains such regardless of sins committed) and cannot violate Shabbos and others cannot ask him to do so just like any other fully ...


9

During the Second Temple Period, there were different sects with different interpretations of Judaism. The descendants of the Pharisees wrote the Talmud, which defined Orthodox Judaism as we know today. (What follows is from Rabbi Shneur Leiman's lecture on yutorah.org) The Dead Sea Scrolls belonged to a sect that was clearly not the Pharisees; it includes ...


7

The perspective of Orthodox Jews vis-a-vis the Dead sea scrolls varies from non recognition, ambivalence, to outright excitement. For those who do not view it as a life altering find see them as 1. Either a validation of what was already known to them ie. Small variance in textual differences due to a very solid mesorah. 2. the other non canonical scrolls ...


6

Yehuda Wiesen wrote a "Guide to Practical Halacha and Home Ritual for Conservative Jews" (available here), from which I quote (from the section concerning Shabbat): There are many and various so called minor restrictions, some of which the Conservative movement seems to follow and others that it does not. For example, Orthodox typically avoid use of ...


5

The atheist is still a Jew; his (non-)belief does not exempt him from the obligation not to violate Shabbat. This answer elsewhere by DoubleAA discusses benefitting from melacha done by a Jew. It stands to reason that if you can't benefit from the work anyway, there's no benefit to you in asking him to be your "Shabbat goy", so let's look first at the case ...


5

The ketubah, like any Jewish legal document, requires the signature of two witnesses. Besides being Jewish men who are unrelated to each other (or to the bride or groom), there are other qualifications. The Shulchan Arukh (חושן משפט הלכות עדות סימן לד) rules that רשע פסול לעדות A rasha is invalidated from serving as a witness What is a rasha? ...


5

I'm not sure if you really need to source disapproval of R. Benamozegh specifically, because mainstream Orthodoxy doesn't consider him worth talking about (as you've discovered). Almost all of his unique viewpoints are considered heresy; just pick up any Chareidi-published book on the Principles of Faith. It would take a long time to list all of the places ...


5

One of the biggest deal-breakers in the ceremony -- more than the language of the ketubah -- is if the witnesses were shabbat-observant. There are other issues in non-Orthodox ceremonies, but that's by far the biggest. In theory the Talmud talks about situations where a couple would have in mind that if the wedding ceremony itself isn't valid, they would ...


4

You may want to consider using Hagada - Mi Yodeya? Our companion to the Passover Hagada, featuring questions practice, lore, and thought spanning the Seder, from preparations to closing. That should make things interesting. :)


4

A few things that can help to engage people in the Seder: Acquire a stack of interesting Haggadot with commentaries in addition to a complete set of identical ones. Give everyone their own unique Haggadah and encourage them to find something interesting from it to share at the appropriate point in the Seder. Prepare a conversational question and go ...


4

Halachically Speaking (7:2) has a great overview of this question: There is a discussion in the poskim regarding the status of a Jew who is not observant. The Rambam states that a Jew who is mechalel Shabbos (openly) is considered like a non-Jew for all mitzvos. The Pischei Teshuva debates the status of a mechalel Shabbos (mumar) in regard to bishul ...


4

I attended a halacha shiur when I was in yeshiva that addressed this issue. I believe that the posek that my rav was quoting was Rav Ovadiah Yosef zt"l; however, unfortunately, I lost my notes from that shiur, so I cannot confirm that this is correct. He said that, in general, one should not hear kiddush from someone who is mechalel shabbat; however, if a ...


4

The issue here is essentially one of lowest common denominator. A conversion will only be accepted by Group X if they think that Group Y, who oversaw the conversion, did so appropriately and successfully, following all the relevant laws as understood by Group X. Otherwise, Group X will continue to view the potential convert as a gentile with all that ...


4

Pniniei Halocho of Rabbi Melamed defines valid witnesses. וכן אדם שאינו מזדהה עם הערכים שעליהם מבוססים הקידושין, היינו עם ערכי התורה, אינו יכול להיות עד בחתונה. ולכן אדם שחוטא בגילוי עריות, למשל, מקיים יחסים עם אשת איש, או עם אחותו או בתו וכדומה, פסול לעדות. וכן אדם שחשוד בגניבה פסול מלהיות עד, וכמובן שאין הבדל בין אדם שמתפרץ לבית חבירו בלילה ...


3

R' Yosef Eliyahu Henkin (פירושי אירבא סימן ד) held that it does not actually matter if the wedding was valid, as they are living together with intent to be married. Rav Henkin adopted the novel view that even if their intent to be married is not necessarily through Kiddushin, and even if they don't know that consumation of marriage can create Kiddushin, ...


3

The Reform movement believes in patrilineal descent (at least of 1983, when it was a radical departure from thousands of years of traditional Judaism). So if your father is Jewish, then you would be considered Jewish by the Reform movement (but not the rest of Jewry) whether or not your mother is Jewish. Whether your mother is Jewish according to Reform ...


3

There have been several different sects of Judaism almost since the beginning of the religion. The oldest movements were Pharisees, Sadducees, Essenes and Zealots Medieval movements included Karaites and Rabbinical Judaism Rabbinical Judaism split into Chasidic, Orthodox, Reform and Conservative in the US today Other countries have similar ...


3

Sam gave this source in a comment last year, but no-one ever came to post an answer, so i'll do that now... In Igrot Moshe OC 1:23, he paskens that בשעת הדחק - in an emergency, someone who is publicly Mechallel Shabbat can be counted for a minyan, to say Barchu, Kadish, and Kedusha. However, for Torah reading, it is more important to have 10 religious Jews. ...


2

Your question ignores the reality of the twelve shvatim. Each with its own personality, its own sanhedrin, in some instances a definable different pronunciation of words and according to the Arizal different nuschaos hatefila. Having separate smaller groups is not necessarily a bad thing. I will relate a drasha I heard from one of my rebbeim in beis ...


2

It appears from the Rambam (הלכות גירושין פרק י :כ-כ"ב) and other places that once a couple behaves as husband & wife, then they need a Get to become divorced - and permitted to marry other people. As a result, their divorce as a real one, and would disqualify her from marrying a Cohen.


2

This is only a partial answer. I have heard from Rabbi Moshe Sternbuch, (formerly in South Africa where he was my family's Rav, now Raavad of the Edah Hachareidis, Jerusalem), that a Baal teshuva does NOT wear tefilin on Chol Hamoed as this is lechumrah. One only wears tefilin, if one has an existing family tradition to do so.


2

The Talmud in Kidushin says that 'Ein adam oseh be'ilato be'ilat znut'. Which means that a man living with a woman does not have the intention for an act of prostitution, rather means to make her his wife. Whether this applies today is questionable, but here they did intend to get married, so I would assume it applies. The main problem is when they split up ...


2

In short: there isn't, or at least, not sufficient evidence. The author of the article quoted in the question seems to misunderstand the sources he quotes. While it may be true that the Rashbam interpreted verse in question (Genesis 1:5) in a way that implies that night follows the day, he is in no way making a legal statement, and as he himself says ...


2

I attended a partnership minyan Friday night. This is something new in my city and the organizers are still working out details. Here is what I learned there. The group formed after a conference session about (maybe organized by) JOFA. Their intention is to follow the guidelines/precedents from that organization. The service I attended was a normal ...


1

There's a theoretical halachic category of someone who publicly, purposely violates the Shabbat; but practically, that's not what you'd call your average non-Shabbat-observing Jew today. A community could certainly enact its own higher standards, but essentially it's permissible. Rabbi Moshe Shternbuch has a responsum to a small town in South Africa which ...


1

If there is a question about the legitimacy of your mother's status as a Jewess or not then an Orthodox Beis Din (court) will insist on at least a giyur l'chumra (a conversion to be stringent just to make sure), but in cases of adoption etc. especially coming from the Reform movement because of their disregard for Halacha especially in the areas of who is ...


1

I heard from R. Nota Greenblatt that although we are are stringent in accordance with R. Henkin's view that the marriage is valid, and we would require a get, even in the event that she is dating a kohen and would be prohibited to him from an actual get, she may marry the kohen. Even though a rabbinic prohibition exists after giving an invalid get, this ...


1

Partnership minyanim give women aliyot or let them lein, based on the Gemara in megillah (stressing the "women can ..." part, but not the "...but they shouldn't" part.) They wait for ten women's presence because, well because it feels nicer that way. And they let a woman be chazan for any part that you could skip altogether if you were in a rush.



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