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17

If a non-Jew slaughters an animal, it is not kosher. (Mishna Chullin 1:1 [English on p. 36 of this .PDF], Rambam Shechita 4:11 [English translation], Shuchan Aruch YD 2:1 In fact, I know of no authority who has ever argued on this point.)


12

There are, of course, a lot of explanations about what happened here and what this story means. Shaloh (Torah Shebichsav, Tetzaveh) states that Rabbah brought R. Zeira to a level of Divine understanding, and with that divestment from his physical body, beyond his capabilities. As for the term "slaughtered" (שחיטה), he compares it to the phrase וישחטם במדבר ...


11

As far as I know, the above answer is correct. A neveilah conveys ritual impurity, while a treifa does not; as per the gemura in Niddah on 42b, which makes a drasha from the pasuk in Vayikra 22:8. Here is a direct link: http://www.hebrewbooks.org/shas.aspx?mesechta=37&daf=42b&format=pdf it is about 3/4 of the way down the daf.


11

To get Kosher meat takes three main steps: choosing the right animal, killing it in the proper way, and removing non-kosher parts from it. (This is all an oversimplification, of course.) Choosing the right animal Kosher land mammals are those who chew their cud and have split hooves. Kosher birds are those that aren't one of the ones listed as not kosher ...


10

Ben Ish Chai identifies two understandings of this aggada: (1) It's literal interpretation in which Rabba actually slaughters R' Zeira, and (2) the "explanation of the kabbalists", in which Rabba and R' Zeira were discussing esoteric secrets of the Torah, and Rabba's soul in some way triumphed over his R' Zeira's, in some sense "unraveling" his soul. (Don't ...


10

First siman in Yoreh Deah 1:1- They are kasher to shecht. The Rema quotes the Bais Yosef/Agur that we don't allow them lechatechila since we see the minhag is not to shecht. (There is discussion on why the fact that women don't shecht creates a minhag for them not to.)


10

No. A kosher animal must be specifically slaughtered and prepared according to Jewish laws in order for its meat to be kosher. These laws are very specific, governing the knife used, the method and stroke of the knife, the method for soaking/salting properly, and checking the innards for defects which would render the animal unkosher. If any of these laws ...


9

As I understand it, it wasn't actually stainless steel vs. something else (stainless steel hadn't yet been invented, anyway). It's more an issue of the shape of the blade in cross-section: the "old-style" knife was the same thickness top to bottom (and then the edge of this was sharpened, so in profile it would be trapezoidal); the "new" one (called סכין ...


7

There are certain foods likely to be taken from live animals and most others would not be. So for example, I'd trust that most chicken or beef available on the market is not eiver min hachai. But snow crab legs are apparently often taken from live snow crabs. So if the ben noach knows what foods are likely to be problematic, they can avoid those or devote ...


7

In Chullin 27b, the Gemara points out that "animals, which were created from earth, are made kosher via two 'signs' [cutting the windpipe and the esophagus]; fish, which were created from the water, don't need anything to make them kosher; birds, which were created from the mud [containing both earth and water - Rashi], are made kosher via one 'sign.'" ...


7

A drunk person should not slaughter, but if he did anyhow, as long as the technique was proper, the slaughter would still be good. In fact, even if he was so completely drunk as to be not cognizant of his actions ("as drunk as Lot") and he'd have the same halachic status as someone insane; the halacha is if someone insane did slaughter, and used the proper ...


7

An improperly slaughtered kosher  animal becomes a nevela. This is apparent from the term which appears several times in the Mishna (e.g. Chulin 6:2) and poskim: השוחט ונתנבלה בידו (one who slaughters and as a result the animal becomes a nevela) This ruling can also be deduced from this Mishna (Chulin 2:4) which comes to teach about nevelot ...


7

The first Tosafot in chulin entertains the idea. The Rosh permits it. Eldad HaDani, a big forger basically prohibits it, but some Rishonim thought he was for real. More information can be found in this class by Rabbi Maybruch. Rav Soloveitchik said that the only reason that we never saw women shochtot is because it used to be a position of communal ...


6

Rambam (in the introduction to his Commentary on the Mishnah) says that it is because the Torah itself introduces the concept of slaughtering for nonsacred purposes immediately following the rules about sacrifices (Deut. 12:11, 15). It may also be due to the fact that kosher slaughter is basically an optional mitzvah (you don't have to eat meat), except in ...


6

Strictly speaking, there is no upper age limit, though some have the custom to impose an across-the-board limit of age 70 (perhaps to kindly retire certain aged shochtim who won't admit to their waning stamina, and who cannot be forced out due to political considerations). On the Nirbater Rav's list of policies for the Meal Mart company under his hashgacha, ...


6

Kudos to both answers above; just one more point: after the ainmal is slaughtered by a Jew according to Jewish law, the meat is then inspected, soaked, and salted; then it can be packaged in a reasonably tamper-proof container and shipped off and sold at any general supermarket. So you don't have to go to a "kosher butcher shop" per se.


6

The Mishna (Zevachim 3:1) states: כל הפסולין ששחטו שחיטתן כשרה שהשחיטה כשרה בזרים בנשים ובעבדים ובטמאים אפילו בקדשי קדשים Anyone who is invalid for Temple service who slaughtered [a sacrifice], the slaughter is valid, for slaughtering [sacrifices] is valid even for non-priests, women, slaves and even impure people, even for the holiest of sacrifices. ...


5

The Aruch HaShulchan in OH 551:25 writes, after quoting the Ramo in the question: ומובן ממילא דבעיר גדולה שיש בה תמיד כמה חולאים וכמה יולדות, והרבה חלושי הבריאות – לא שייך להצניע הסכין "And it is understood automatically that in a big city where there always many sick people and many women who have given birth and many weak people -- it is not relevant to ...


5

RaMBa"M, Hil. Shehitah 4:5 puts a drunk person in the same category as a Heresh, Shoteh and Katan, who have no Da'ath, but whose Shehitah is valid if done under supervision. See my answer to this question about age limits. http://www.mechon-mamre.org/i/5304.htm


5

Hod's answer above is correct. However, to address your point about "a prayer": One must recite a b'rachah upon slaughtering an animal, which is the typical practice when performing mitzvos (Rambam, Hil. B'rachos 11:15). However, as usual with birkas hamitzvos, the absence of this blessing does not render the slaughtering unfit (Bi'ur HaGra, YD 1:31). ...


5

The Lubavitcher Rebbe (Likkutey Sichos vol. 15 pg. 192 and footnote 12-13 there) asserts that (unlike Eisav who the Gemora calls an apostate Jew), Yishmael did not have the legal status of a Jew. He cites the view of many commentators, that only "in Yitzchok will be called your seed" (Genesis 21:12), whereas Yishmael was not considered the seed of Avraham ...


5

Your first question should be asked of somone who is an expert in animal slaughter such as the OU or the STAR-K (Baltimore Vaad Hakashrus) who can tell you if the 'humane' practices required by the FDA ensure that the meat is not 'living' when it is being cut up originally. It could be a matter of how long after the slaughter they wait to actually cut it ...


4

In , Hilchos Shechitah » Chapter 3, Halacha 18, the Rambam writes: Whenever we have used the term "unacceptable," the animal is a nevelah and if a person partakes of an olive-sized portion of it, he is liable for lashes for partaking of a nevelah. For only an acceptable slaughter as commanded by Moses our teacher of blessed memory prevents an animal from ...


4

...Most Jewish communities had been using iron knives, which were more difficult to sharpen. If they were highly polished, they would quickly become knicked, and thus unfit for use. The nuisance of constantly resharpening and repolishing them was not considered worthwhile. Moreover, the polished steel knives had been deemed a new innovation, which some ...


4

The technicalities of shechitah create a very fine line between a kosher shechitah and one that results in neveila meat. For example, applying too much downward pressure on the knife, or pausing during the procedure, can totally invalidate the shechitah. It is basically the shochet's call as to whether the necessary parameters were fulfilled. However, the ...


4

The Gemara (Shabbos 108a) discusses whether we can write tefillin on the skin of a kosher fish. The Gemara answers that we will have to ask Eliyahu HaNavi: אי פסקא זוהמא מיניה אי לא פסקא זוהמא מיניה The Chidushei HaRan writes that at the time of Eve's sin, the snake transmitted zuhama (some sort of filth) onto her and the rest of Creation. When the ...


4

The Rambam rules (Avot HaTumah 2:1) that if one shechts a non-kosher animal it does not attain Nevelah status until it finishes dying, unlike by kosher Shechita where it is considered dead immediately after the Shechita even as it is twitching (and additionally, Kosher Shechita should remove the tumah and prohibition of Nevela, but possibly leaving it as a ...


4

The Mishna in Pesachim (6:6) discusses slaughtering a Korban Pesach on Shabbat and finding it to be a Tereifa. In the Rambam's ruling (Shegagot 2:10 (English)): וכן השוחט את הפסח ביום ארבעה עשר שחל להיות בשבת, ונודע לו אחר כן שמשכו הבעלים את ידיהם או מתו או נטמאו קודם שחיטה, או שנמצא טריפה בסתר, כגון ניקוב מעיים או ריאה--הרי זה פטור, מפני ששחט ברשות; אבל ...


4

There is a documented opinion among Tannaim that there is no biblical requirement for Shechita on fowl (eg. Chullin 27b - 28a). Accordingly it would seem likely that some time existed before the rabbinic requirement of Shechita on fowl was enacted when Halachic Jews ate fowl without Shechita. I note that we do not rule like this opinion, but rather that ...



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