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14

As Dov F has noted, the argument over praying in a mosque is now split between R. Ovadia Yosef and the Tzitz Eliezer. Please see the update below regarding the original Rambam responsa that is referred to by R. Ovadia. The Tzitz Eliezer writes against praying in a mosque in his responsa Volume 14, #91: ולמדנו מכאן שהקדשים של כותים וגם המשוגע של ...


13

The Commentary on the Mishnah came first. In his colophon at the end of it, Rambam writes that he began writing the commentary at age 23, and finished it at age 30, in the year 1479 of the "Era of Documents" (4928 since Creation, 1168 CE). The Mishneh Torah, on the other hand, was written in the 4930s. In the introduction he says that the current year is ...


12

The statement of Maimonides to which you refer is from his Yad Hachazaka, Repentence [or: Return] chapter 3. There he writes (in my own loose translation): Everyone has merits and sins. Someone whose merits are more than his sins is a tzadik. Someone whose sins are more than his merits is a rasha. Half and half, he's a benoni [=middle person]. So, ...


12

The famous position attributed to the Kotzker Rebbe is that, since the Rambam paskened that demons do not exist, his psak halacha caused the demons to cease to exist. See my analysis here. This position is discussed in Prachei Rashi, שאל אחד את רבי מנדל מקוצק: הרמב״ם במורה נבוכים כופר במציאות שדים וכשפים, ואלו בתורה כתוב ״ולא יזבחו עוד את זבחיהם ...


10

It is ואסמע אלהק ממן קאלה. You can read the Judeo-Arabic original (in Hebrew letters, as it was written) here.


10

R' Chaim Dov Rabinowitz (author of Daas Sofrim), in his volume on Jewish history since the close of Tanach, in fact harshly criticizes the Jews of Babylonia for migrating from there to the Christian West during the Geonic era. He argues, for one thing, that they should have learned from the experience of the Jews under Byzantine domination (especially in the ...


10

You're not mistaken: in fact the Tur and Shulkhan Arukh (335:2) say that only a בן גילו has the ability to take some of the sickness with him. This difficulty was recognised by the Drisha on Ramba"m and he stresses Ramba"m's wording: כאילו נטל חלק מחולייו - it is as if he takes part of the illness. However, there's a note in my Ramba"m that directed me to ...


10

Rambam, Hilchos Yesodei Hatorah Chapter 3. From Chabad.org Halacha 1 The spheres are called the heavens, the firmament, the habitation, the skies. There are nine spheres. The closest sphere is the sphere of the moon. The second sphere, which is above it, is the sphere which contains the planet Kochav (Mercury). The third sphere, which is above ...


10

R' Yaakov Weinberg, in an audio recording, addressed this issue (as an issue with the ani maamin, which R' Weinberg, like you, rejected), and he explained that the point of the Rambam is not to say that the specific texts which we have now are identical to the one transmitted to Moshe. Rather, the point of the Rambam is to say that Moshe was a faithful ...


10

The Gemara (Yoma 78b) writes that one who sleeps with shoes on, 'has tasted a taste of death', and since tasting death is probably not a good thing, some poskim write that sleeping with shoes on should be avoided (see Kaf Hahayyim Y.D 116:211, for example). The book Shemiras Haguf Vehanefesh (no. 115) also writes that wearing shoes to sleep causes someone to ...


9

Ramban mentions it in his letter to the French Sages in defense of Rambam (in 1232). He writes (last line of the page, and continuing from there): והנני מעיד עלי לפני רבותי שמים וארץ, כי שמענו ממגידי אמת שבכל ארצות מלכות תימן, קהלות רבות עוסקים בתורה ובמצות לשמן, והיו מזכירים שם הרב בכל קדיש וקדיש: "בחייכון וביומיכון ובחיי דרבנא משה בן מיימון", ...


9

The Alter Rebbe of Lubavitch, Rabbi Shneur Zalman, explains in the beginning of Tanya that if you take the Rambam's words (which are also Rashi and Tosfos' words) at face value, they create several contradictions. First, they contradict Rabba, who called himself a beinoni despite the fact that he never stopped learning, to the extent that the Angel of ...


9

It may be that Rambam would distinguish between whether the magician actually did some kind of action or not. Suppose, for example, you have someone who claims that he will use magic to harvest a field of cucumbers (the example given in the Mishnah, Sanhedrin 67a). There are, then, three possibilities: He performs some action (waving a wand, saying some ...


9

The Torah specifically states the prohibition against prostitution, in order to prevent the land to be filled with licentiousness: ולא תזנה הארץ ומלאה הארץ זמה. Rambam seems to be deducing the underlying reason for that concern of the Torah, in his statement: For [ultimately], a father will marry his daughter and a brother his sister, [for in a ...


9

The list of differences can be found in an appendix to the Minchas Chinuch. Ramban includes all of these positive mitzvos, which the Rambam doesn't Mitzvah 1: Positive mitzvah of eating maaser sheni. Mitzvah 2: Positive mitzvah of not eating impure trumah Mitzvah 3: Positive mitzvah of not selling shvi'is fruits Mitzvah 4: Positive mitzvah of settling ...


9

In the introduction to his commentary on Masekhet Avot (Shemonah Peraqim), chapter five, the Rambam says (in Shmuel ibn Tibbon's translation): והוא הדין מי שהתרגשה עליו מרה שחורה, ועמד והסירה בשמיעת הניגונים ובמיני הזמר, ובטיול בגינות ובבניינים נאים, ובישיבה עם צורות נאות וכיוצא בדברים שמרחיבים הנפש ומסירים הרהוריו הקודרים ממנה.‏ In an English ...


9

No, you are not supposed to ignore most non-religious Jews. Rambam Hilchos Mamrim 3:3: אבל בני אותן הטועים ובני בניהם, שהדיחו אותם אבותם ונולדו במינות, וגידלו אותן עליו--הרי הן כתינוק שנשבה לבין הגויים וגידלוהו הגויים על דתם, שהוא אנוס; ואף על פי ששמע אחר כך שהיה יהודי, וראה היהודיים ודתם--הרי הוא כאנוס, שהרי גידלוהו על טעותם. כך אלו האוחזים בדרכי ...


8

In the Frankel ed. it is called Hagahos Maimoniyos.


8

It seems to me from the quote from the last Chief Rabbi of Yemen, Rabbi Amram Korach, that they didn't follow the Rambam in this regard because they found the kudu horn more beautiful for the mitzvah. "The shofar of Rosh HaShanah, that they were accustomed to blowing, was long and twisted, two or three twists, and its sound was pure and eerie. Some ...


8

This question is dealt with at great length in the Sefer "The 13 Principles of Faith" (Gutnick edition) by Rabbi Chaim Miller in the Eighth Principle, Lesson Seven, based on the teaching of the Lubavitcher Rebbe. He summarizes the chapter as follows: The Sanhedrin of each generation was authorized to overrule any of the derived laws of the previous ...


8

There are two main opinions, one by Rashi saying that are straight lines going up at an angle, seen also in the Rambam on the Mishna and R' Abraham his son. See sources: רש"י על התורה שמות כה, לב. והציור בפירוש המשנה לרמב"ם מנחות ג, ז. ודעת ר' אברהם בן הרמב"ם בדעת אביו. וכן כתב העזרת כהנים מידות ד, ז.‏ The other opinion is the Ibn Ezra, and it is the ...


8

There are several historical factors to consider, particularly the advent of the internet. We live in the age of information. The gap between rabbinic leadership and the lay is being broached with great rapidity. More people are interested in a more horizontal society wherein they approach sources, analyze them, digest them, etc. and interact on such basis ...


7

We are fortunate that these great people recorded such personal moments, because it shows us that they were human, and they struggled with situations no less difficult than any of us. Lest anyone say "this and this posek was not grounded in reality; he never experienced the real world," these words demonstrate an involvement in the same emotional struggle of ...


7

Because the RaMBa"M spoke Arabic (for those who read Arabic, a closer example is in the first usage example here: "Japan is close to China"). Yes, he wrote in Hebrew, and he was very skilled in his Hebrew grammar. That does not mean, however, that he was not influenced by his Arabic language background. Given that he used this term regularly, I think it ...


7

It appears in Mishneh Torah, Sefer Nezikin, Hilchot Gezeilah v'Aveidah, Chapter 1. In the Frankel edition (with almost an identical version appearing on the Mechon Mamre website) this appears in Halacha 1. כל הגונב ממון משוה פרוטה ומעלה עובר על לא תעשה שנ' לא תגנבו. ואין לוקין על לאו זה שהרי ניתן לתשלומין שהגנב חייבה אותו תורה לשלם. ואחד הגונב ממון ...


6

Yes it seems funny; at the other extreme, anti-Semitism in India is considered virtually nonexistant historically, when Hinduism and Judaism have, shall I say, more or less mutually-exclusive theologies. Part of the answer seems to be that "good fences make good neighbors", or as one genealogist put it, "you fight with your cousins." A religion that has ...


6

My arguments for learning Moreh Nevuhim: Many issues regarding proper approach to understanding the language of the Torah are clarified, thereby removing the stumblimg blocks that result from being over-literalist in translation of the Torah. Many universally accepted (amongst current Orthodoxy) fundementals are spelled out with a clarity that guides one ...


6

Other good uncensored versions include Rambam Le'Am printed by Mossad HaRav Kook, the Frankel edition of the Rambam, and the Rav Kapach edition. The Frankel edition includes extensive notes on the various textual differences; Rav Kapach simply gives you the Yemenite version. The single volume edition mentioned previously can be found here. Online there's ...



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