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Jan
26
comment Are there any jokes in the Geonim or Rishonim?
Yes, I think the identification was mistaken. Also, according to the Hebrew Wikipedia page, R' Yosef Karo means to cite R' Yitzchak Abuav of Castile. (For more discussion of this t'shuva of the Maharit, see here, which also considers whether the King of Portugal compared R' Abuav to an eagle, or to an important bridge).
Jan
26
comment Are there any jokes in the Geonim or Rishonim?
This story, Which R' Conforte cites to the responsa of the Maharit (II YD 16, reproduced here), is actually about R' Yitzchak Abuav II of Castile, who was blind in one eye and close to the King of Portugal. (For fun, here's a link to a scan of the Maharit's original handwritten responsum).
Jan
26
comment Source of Ramban's famous debate
Correct, the Ramban's account can be found in volume 1 of R' Chavel's Kisvei Ramban (cited here). It can also be found in Otzar Vikuchim, here.
Jan
23
comment Disagreeing with one's rebbe
Is that referring to advice and guidance in general (e.g. what city to move to, what career to choose, etc.), or even deciding an overtly halachic question (e.g. "Some milk fell into my pot - is it kosher?").
Jan
23
comment Did any classic rabbinic sources discuss static electricity?
@Ypnypn This is true according to several poskim (notably excluding the Chazon Ish), but this may only apply if the static electricity is generated incidentally (לא ניחא ליה) and not for the express purpose of generating sparks (as least according to some of poskim, such as R' Ovadia Yosef).
Jan
23
comment What was the Shita of the Rema
@gt6989b True. Sometimes he even rules against all three in favor of another rishon.
Jan
23
comment Retzuah Problems
There's a machlokes about the ideal location of the knot, and some say it should rest on the external occipital protuberance itself, rather than on the median nuchal line that you mention (e.g. Mishna B'rura OC 27:35, see also Bei'ur Halacha ad loc. and Sha'arei T'shuva 27:10). Anyway, I think you are yotzei either way, unless the knot is so low that it rests on a part of your neck below the hairline.
Jan
23
comment Have any of you ever heard anyone pronouncing ayin as “ng”?
Where an 'ayin is pronounced at the syllable coda as a pharyngeal glottal plosive, that could easily be mistaken as a velar nasal consonant, especially by people whose native language lacks a pharyngeal glottal plosive or a voiced pharyngeal fricative. But I didn't think a velar nasal could start a syllable in Hebrew. Do you have any examples of a velar nasal "ngayin" beginning a syllable?
Jan
22
revised Rav Hirsch and zachor
got rid of Hebrew text, per msh210
Jan
22
comment Rav Hirsch and zachor
@msh210 I included it because it is more extensive than my partial English paraphrasing. If you think it's distracting, I'll get rid of the Hebrew and only leave the link to it.
Jan
20
comment When Moshiach comes how will people know about God?
Even if you understand this as a duel reference including the final redemption, it's talking about the exiles from Jerusalem (i.e. the Jews), unlike Z'charya 8:23 referenced in the OP.
Jan
20
comment Can one make ice on Shabbos?
Closely related: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/3721
Jan
20
comment When Moshiach comes how will people know about God?
That's referring to the Jews who were exiled from Jerusalem by N'vuchadnetzar. I think the OP was referring to non-Jewish aboriginal peoples.
Jan
20
comment Can someone build a snowman on Shabbat?
Sort of related: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/52633
Jan
16
comment Is 'A father and son sleeping with a betrothed young woman on yom kippur' an expression?
@Ypnypn Rav Chaim Vital reported that a dybbuk made a similar claim about a colleague and his son, though about a גויה (quoted at the top of this page; in the part about the younger son, other versions of the account specify "הגויה").
Jan
16
comment Is there a punishment for disgracing our prophets/sages?
Highly related: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/45629
Jan
16
comment What is the penalty for someone who insults Judaism
Related: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/21769
Jan
16
comment What is the penalty for someone who insults Judaism
While it is certainly prohibited and bad to insult the Torah or defame a prophet, the specific Torah prohibition that is usually translated as "blasphemy" applies only to the extreme case of cursing God (Heaven forbid). See, for example, Sefer HaChinuch §70.
Jan
16
comment Mizmor L'Toda with Melody
If it helps at all, this is based on the Orchos Chayim (I Din Mei'ah B'rachos 26,ובמקומות שאומרים מזמור לתודה כתב הרב נתן שמצוה למשוך אותו בנגינה ולנגן), which is in turn derived from the midrash (Vayikra Rabba 9:7 based on Yirm'yahu 33:11, רבי פנחס ורבי לוי ורבי יוחנן בשם ר' מנחם דגליא לעתיד לבא... כל התפלות בטלות ההודאה אינה בטלה הה"ד (ירמיה לג) קול ששון וקול שמחה קול חתן וקול כלה קול אומרים הודו את השם).
Jan
16
awarded  Outspoken