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Jun
25
comment Eternal Gehinom
I suppose that a biblical basis for the concept of eternal damnation might lie in Isaiah 66:24 and Daniel 12:2, but there are other echos of it in the rabbinic literature as well (cf: Berakhot 28b, שאם כועס עלי כעסו כעס עולם, ואם אוסרני איסורו איסור עולם).
Jun
24
comment The purity of non-priests, non-Jews and non-humans who eat terumah
Why would you say that? How is somebody who is not Jewish "sufficiently Jewish" for anything?
Jun
24
asked The purity of non-priests, non-Jews and non-humans who eat terumah
Jun
24
comment Is it possible for a Reform Jew to break halacha or violate a mitzva?
I understand you to be asking about whether or not a Reform Jew can ever consider themselves to be breaking Shabbat, and I think you're making the erroneous assumption that when it comes to Judaism, Reform Jews just throw their hands up in the air or something, shrug and say "Who cares". Their understanding of the halakhic system is that individuals can define for themselves just what it means to them. That means that they might see themselves as keeping Shabbat despite their performing certain malakhot, but it doesn't mean that they don't think Shabbat exists.
Jun
24
comment Why do some transliterate “Balaam” when the Hebrew is “Bilaam”?
Similarly, why do people always say "Bamidbar"? My guess is that "Bamidbar" (and "Balaam") sound closer to the phonological constraints of Germanic languages than do "Bemidbar" (and "Bilaam"). Do you hear Sephardim and Mizrachi Jews say Balaam as well, or is it just Ashkenazim (and North Americans)?
Jun
20
comment When should a commuter cyclist wear a tallit katan?
Okay, +1 :) It's an interesting question, and I would think goes for working out in the gym as well.
Jun
20
comment When should a commuter cyclist wear a tallit katan?
Can you please explain why you think it would be a problem? Is it just because of your comfort (perhaps you don't enjoy being excessively sweaty), or is it for fear that you are ruining the beged? If the former, I would think that מצות לאו ליהנות נתנו, and in the case of the latter would advise that you wear a garment between the tallit qatan and your skin. If I'm not mistaken, such a garment needs be worn anyway...
Jun
19
comment Rambam held of Timtum halev?
Also, the yeshivot of Sura and Pumbedita had been destroyed; there were no geonim in the 12th century.
Jun
18
comment freed slaves owe their redeemer (jews owe HaShem)
The US didn't free slaves. They just stopped enslaving them. There's a (huge) difference.
Jun
17
comment Why is wearing a hijab or turbans not common for Israeli jews?
The Mishna in Shabbat 6:6 mentions Jewish women in Arabic lands being able to walk around veiled on Shabbat, so it stands to reason that such head-gear is cultural and not environmental (were it the latter, it would have applied to women in Palestine as well, where the Mishna was written). I would assume the same for the kefiyyah and the hijab, etc, and have seen pictures of Jews of the Old Yishuv wearing such garb. The niqab, however, is a religious Islamic head-dress, though one adopted by certain fringe elements in Bet Shemesh.
Jun
15
answered A woman's singing voice when there are other singing voices
Jun
13
comment Why is the Shulchan Aruch definitive?
The Shulchan Arukh is not and never has been "the final word on halakha". If there are people today who think that it is, they are likely the same individuals who treat the Rambam as being the final word on matters of faith, and they should expand their library.
Jun
13
comment Why is “Y'sachar Dov” a popular combination name?
And what's this phonetic correlation between "Ber" and "Dov"? Do you mean semantic?
Jun
13
comment Why is “Y'sachar Dov” a popular combination name?
For what it's worth (probably very little), I think the explanation that you have provided is completely bogus. You have a source, and that's good, and the OP likes your answer. But your source is obviously fanciful, and I'm somewhat astonished that so many have just accepted it. How on earth could the author (R' Gorr) possibly know that the first person to name his son Yissachar Ber did so because of this flimsy correlation - that the second word sounds similar (and not even that similar) to one of the verbs used in a non-existent translation of the Torah into German??
Jun
13
comment Making bracha when passing by a bakery
Why are you quoting the Mishna Berurah when this is all in the Shulchan Arukh? I don't see where the Mishna Berurah adds anything of relevance to this question...
Jun
12
comment Can one write one's own Hespid?
Thank you, Norman, for bringing your question here. That is very sad, and I'm very sorry to hear it. Do you have people that you can talk to? This sounds like a good question to bring to a rabbi that you connect with... It's a very delicate one, and you shouldn't take what you read here as psak. I wish you whatever refuah sheleimah your prognosis allows for, and that things turn out to be better than they presently seem. I hope that this all resolves itself for you and for your family with minimal pain and with maximum comfort.
Jun
2
comment Does a Rabbi have to sink with his ship?
There are lots of similar examples to this, each nuanced in different ways. For example, Rachel Citron, the daughter of R' Yosef Rosen (the Rogatchover), left Petach Tikva for Dvinsk to work with her father's student, publishing his various manuscripts. They worked until the Nazi ban on Jewish publications reached them, at which point they worked covertly. They worked right up until the point when they were murdered, making available to the world the Rogatchover's manuscripts: tzafnat.com/mission--history.html
May
30
asked Regional Ashkenazi Pronunciation
May
30
comment What is so special about wearing Egyptian clothing
What makes you think that he was dressed as an Egyptian?? Maybe it makes sense to say that he was, but where does the Torah say that? They merely said that an Egyptian man saved them. So, maybe he was speaking an Egyptian language? Maybe he told them that he had come from Egypt? Maybe his name sounded Egyptian? There could be a dozen reasons, of which clothing is only one.
May
30
accepted Confessing to Adultery