71,129 reputation
190255
bio website none
location Keser Elyon
age 42
visits member for 4 years, 11 months
seen Jul 28 '13 at 6:23
Graduate of Beis Medrash Oholei Torah and "Seven Seventy"; now a בעל הבית with ריחיים בצוארו but still trying to be עוסק בתורה

Jul
19
comment Are sea sponges kosher?
@AL: we find that the Gemara considers coral to be a kind of tree (Rosh Hashanah 23a), even though it's actually also a type of marine animal (or rather, an accretion of them). So it's conceivable that halachah says the same about sponges; the key difference might be whether they stay in one place (corals and most sponges) or not (some types of sponges).
Jul
18
comment How did Hevel offer an animal sacrifice, wasn't it forbidden to kill animals?
@msh210: since you deleted your answer on the related question I can't place this comment there, but indeed the Gemara in Avodah Zarah 8a states that Adam offered his korban on the morning after he was created (in gratitude for Hashem's bringing back the daylight). That would indeed have been before Hevel's korban, which was מקץ ימים, however that's defined.
Jul
17
comment kosher food ideas without refrigeration
@msh210: okay, I assumed he/she meant that no specifically kosher brands are available. [FWIW, I found flour with a hechsher even in some quite remote places in northern Canada - once, if I recall correctly, in the grocery store at a native (First Nations) town.]
Jul
9
comment Is believing that God, Israel, and Torah are one Avodah Zarah?
...When a Jew sins, then as RSZ puts it, the nefesh ha-Elokis is dragged into it against its will, but still remains faithful to G-d, and will try to do whatever it can to influence the nefesh ha-bahamis. A non-Jew doesn't have a nefesh ha-Elokis, but he or she can - and is expected to - harness the powers of the nefesh ha-bahamis to do good (at the very least, to realize that helping another person helps oneself as well), like taming an animal and using it for work.
Jul
9
comment Is believing that God, Israel, and Torah are one Avodah Zarah?
@JimThio: no need to kid. Jews and non-Jews alike have a nefesh ha-bahamis ("animal soul"), which naturally gravitates towards personal satisfaction. (It can be trained to look beyond the self, but of course that takes a lot of work.) Obviously, in the case of a Jewish criminal, his or her nefesh ha-bahamis is still in that "animalistic" state. But they also have a nefesh ha-Elokis (which I mentioned in my previous comment), which naturally trends to G-d and seeks closeness to Him...
Jul
9
comment Is believing that God, Israel, and Torah are one Avodah Zarah?
@DoubleAA: "the Jewish soul" means just that - the nefesh ha-Elokis ("G-dly soul"), which is unique to Jews. At the level that we're familiar with (the world of Asiyah), each of these three appears to be something else; but the point of "they are all one" is that at a higher level - specifically, in Atzilus, the highest of the four spiritual realms - they are one and the same. (And higher than that - before tzimtzum - none of those entities can even be said to exist; to use RSZ's metaphor, they are like "the rays of the sun while they are still in the sun-globe.")
Jul
8
comment Animals sixth sense
@IsaacMoses: but Rashi there says that "Hashem gave animals the ability to see what humans can't, because a person, who has intelligence, would become mentally deranged from seeing such destructive beings." So it's not just a quality of that particular donkey.
Jun
25
comment About what were rabbis ahead of the times?
@SethJ: they'd be included in the more generic כל צבאיו of the previous verse.
Jun
13
comment What is the source of the expression המבין יבין?
@wfb: in which case it might be based on ומשכילי עם יבינו לרבים (Dan. 11:33), although there יבינו is transitive.
Jun
6
comment A Lubavitch custom of reciting zecher and zeicher in “Ashrei”?
@DoubleAA: not that I know of, but it's short enough to translate: "Customs of the Rebbeim are of two kinds: (1) general customs, those that were publicized; (2) personal customs, those that they kept in private."
Jun
6
comment Destruction of the world after 1000 years of Moshiach?
@Curiouser, I hardly think that's correct, considering that Rambam classifies those who deny the future resurrection among those who have no share in the world to come, but are cut off and lost..." (Hil. Teshuvah 3:6), and that he lists it as one of the fundamental principles of Judaism (introduction to Chelek).
Jun
6
comment From where do we learn that strangulation is the default execution method?
For 2b, doesn't burning (swallowing hot lead) also not leave a mark, at least externally? (Indeed, the Gemara characterizes it as שריפת נשמה וגוף קיים.)
Jun
5
comment A Lubavitch custom of reciting zecher and zeicher in “Ashrei”?
@DoubleAA: see the 1st paragraph here, that the Chabad rebbeim had "public" vs. "private" minhagim, as Menachem said. Sometimes these go back to the customs of different communities. For example, in Lubavitch they didn't say Akdamus, but in Yekatrinoslav (where the Rebbe grew up) they did; the general Chabad minhag thus became not to say it, but the Rebbe himself used to say it in an undertone (and this Shavuos I was at a Chabad shul where they did the same). Other times, such "private" customs are based on ideas from Kabbalah, etc.
Jun
4
comment Why is Korach's rebellion referred to as בְּנֵי לֵוִי?
Rashi to Num. 26:11 says הם היו בעצה תחילה, and the Lubavitcher Rebbe (Likkutei Sichos 33:170ff, sec. 1 and 5) explains that indeed this means that they were among the instigators of the rebellion (but that their thoughts of teshuvah saved them from utter destruction).
Jun
3
comment Why is Korach's rebellion referred to as בְּנֵי לֵוִי?
If no one else, there are Korach's sons.
Jun
2
comment Why did Korach have to be buried alive?
@joshwaxman, it may well include Korach himself. If Rabbah bar bar Chana describes (be it literally or metaphorically) hearing "the ones swallowed up with Korach" speaking from Gehinnom, then logically that can't include the sons - they'd have been long out of there by RbbC's times, no?
Jun
2
comment Why did Korach have to be buried alive?
@expern, that's exactly it: they have done teshuvah, but it is incomplete - every month they are made to see their mistake over again and to do teshuvah for it at a more intense level. This is something we don't find with other resha'im.
Jun
2
comment Why did Moshe conquer the land of Og and Sichon?
@expern, I'm not quite getting you. They approached it, as in Eilu V'Eilu's answer, because how else were they going to get to Eretz Yisrael proper? (Unless you suppose that they should have bypassed Sichon's and Og's lands and come around from the north.)
Jun
2
comment Why pray for Y'hoshua and not Kalev?
"the same, as far as we know, was not true of Y'hoshua": indeed, he may not even have been married at that point yet - we hear of him marrying Rachav decades later (Megillah 14b, bottom), but AFAIK no earlier wife of his is mentioned anywhere.
Jun
2
comment Why did Moshe conquer the land of Og and Sichon?
@expern: see Deut. 20:10ff (Ramban cites these verses), which describe just that situation: "If you approach a city to fight against it, you shall first make an offer of peace. If they answer in peace and open [their gates] to you, then all the people in it shall be tributary to you and serve you. If they do not surrender, and fight against you, then you shall besiege it..." Nothing to do with whether they're from the Seven Nations or not - see ibid. 20:15.