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Mar
26
comment What is the difference between a kofer and apicorsis
"...takes on a substantially more negative nuance in the rabbinic literature. Some passages that speak of the Am haAretz are decidedly harsher than others..." That's apparently because the term itself varies radically in its definition throughout rabbinic literature. On one extreme, it can mean something like "malicious anti-religious antagonist and/or potentially murderous brute."
Mar
26
comment Has the Torah been changed over the ages?
@MarkRogers Relevant link.
Mar
25
comment Why are Jews so meticulous about not saying/writing “god”?
This answer provides a source for prohibiting verbalization, though that position is not universally accepted.
Mar
25
revised Why are Jews so meticulous about not saying/writing “god”?
Changed "frantic" to "meticulous," which more civil and less tendentious. See http://judaism.stackexchange.com/help/behavior
Mar
25
comment Why are Jews so meticulous about not saying/writing “god”?
Highly related (possible duplicates): judaism.stackexchange.com/q/83 and judaism.stackexchange.com/q/15349
Mar
25
comment Who were members of Beth Shammai?
Don't forget R' Dosa's brother, R' Yonasan ben Hyrcanus (Y'rushalmi Y'vamos 1:6, יונתן אחי הוה בכור שטן ומתלמידי בית שמאי - the version in the Bavli 16a states that he was a student of Shammai). Also R' Yochanan ben HaChoranis (Tosefta Eiduyos 2:2, שאף על פי שהוא מתלמידי בית שמאי לא היה נוהג אלא כדברי בית הילל). Also, as mentioned by the OP, R' Eliezer ben Hyrcanus (Y'rushalmi Nazir 6:11, ורבי אליעזר שמותי הוא דתני נזיר ומירט בית שמאי אומרים צריך להעביר תער על ראשו... כן היא מתניתא יטהר ויביא שאר קרבנו; Rashi on Shabbos 130b s.v. שמותי הוא). Also יועזר איש הבירה (Mishna Orlah 2:12).
Mar
24
comment Urchatz Pesach Meal
Washing for דבר שטיבולו במשקה also applies year-round according to most poskim (e.g. Mishna B'rura 158:20, הרבה אחרונים החמירו מאד בדבר וכתבו דהעיקר כרוב הפוסקים דצריך נטילה מדינא אף בזה"ז).
Mar
24
comment How much of benching should be said aloud in a zimmun?
"We can further learn from that which we have mentioned here that, in a place where we do not want to mention the name of adnus (i.e. 'Adonai'), one should say 'HaShem,' unlike that which the masses say 'AdoShem,' for that is not a way of respect to the One Above. Rather, one should follow the language of the tanna (Yoma 4:2): 'HaShem.'" The Taz is discussing alternatives to substituting the name of adnus in the place of the Tetragrammaton. Seemingly, "HaShem" would not be an appropriate substitute for names other than the Tetragrammaton.
Mar
24
comment Where is the story of the medieval rabbi who ruled a fish was non-kosher because of his dream?
If we're going down this road, consider that it could be a type of threadfin of the genus Polydactylus, such as the fish shown here and discussed here. It's called "barbure" in French, and "barbudo" or "barbita" in Spanish.
Mar
24
comment Soft Matzah for Ashkenazim
Related: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/27356
Mar
24
comment How much of benching should be said aloud in a zimmun?
Incidentally, see this question regarding using "Adoshem."
Mar
24
comment What scribal variations (decorations etc) have changed from the earliest sifrei torah until now?
Here is a link to a substantially larger and clearer version of the image.
Mar
21
comment Were Amalek offered a peaceful exit?
@DoubleAA Interesting idea. Can you post a link with information about this city?
Mar
21
asked May one eat eggs purchased on Passover?
Mar
21
comment Were Amalek offered a peaceful exit?
@BabySeal The Maharam (Shu"t 3:272) suggests that they were descended from Haman's daughter, whereas lineage of foreign nations is patrilineal: ומה שהקשה רו"מ בהא דמבני בניו של המן למדו תורה מהמכלתא סו"פ בשלח דאין מקבלין גרים מעמלק. כבר קדמו בס' עיין יעקב לסנהדרין צ"ו ואולי י"ל דהא באומות הלך אחר הזכר והם הי' גרים מבתו של המן והזכר הי' מאומה אחרת.
Mar
20
answered Were Amalek offered a peaceful exit?
Mar
20
comment Secular sources with Torah wisdom
Related: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/25845
Mar
19
comment Torah among the nations
See the second paragraph here in the name of R' Chaim Volozhiner. More tangentially, see the end of R' Moshe's responsum here (Igros Moshe OC II, 17) regarding success in Torah.
Mar
19
comment As an atheist, what awaits me after death?
... By extension, if you could somehow assume that a given person with mistaken beliefs about HaShem is entirely blameless, then the opinions in the final paragraph do not support the claim that that person would necessarily be held accountable.
Mar
19
comment As an atheist, what awaits me after death?
... From the linked snippet, it seems Rabbi Bleich was quoted as saying that disbelief is by its very nature incompatible with an afterlife (or some such, I couldn't see the whole quote). This has nothing to do with being "held accountable". I didn't see what R' Pinkus wrote aside from what's in the link, but that also did not clearly indicate that someone would be "held accountable" for an "honest mistake". None of the cited sources indicated that someone could be punished for what's entirely not their fault; acc. to those sources, either it's not a punishment or it is their fault.