Questions tagged [commentaries]

Questions related to Jewish commentaries, their meaning and their origin.

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Torah is the Name of the Holy One

From where (which verses, or arguments) do the commentators derive that Torah is the Name of the Holy One (as seems to be refered to by many commentators and in the Zohar).
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32 views

Refidim/Rephidim an acronym?

When searching for the meaning of the phrase ברפידם I found out that the commentators read this as an acronym. But I found different of these: One says it's an acronym for rafu yadeyhem (or rifui ...
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The definition of ריב and its applications?

The verb ריב is often translated as quarrel, dispute, murmer, strife or argument, which seems quite logical when looking at Bereshit 13:7 when the herdsmen were bickering about land because it couldn'...
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96 views

Rasji quoting IBN-Saruq on the word 'keri'.

I found this explanation online: Rashi quotes the 10th Century grammarian Menachem (ben IBN-Saruq), who derives keri from a two-letter root k–r, meaning “prevent, refuse, withhold.” Thus, ...
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what is the lashon in rabbeinu yona, iggeres hateshuva?

what is the exact lashon of rabbeinu yona in iggeres hateshuva (Hadrash Hashlishi) that says, "they send the children to school and look after them when they return home. they influence their children ...
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Menorah a way to wipe out Amalek and tool which helps us not to 'cool off'?

This year one will read the Torah portion of Tetzaveh and the special designated Torah reading for the Shabbat prior to Purim, known as Shabbat Zachor, together. Rabbeinu Yehuda Aryeh DiModina (Yid ...
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Different words for curse

I noticed in translation different words are being used to describe 'curse' 1. מארה - m'erah, curse 2. קללה - klalah, curse 3. ארר - arar, curse 4. אלה - alah, curse 5. קבב - kavav, curse... maybe ...
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114 views

Tamei what causes it?

To sum things up quickly as an example: If a woman is in her state of nidah Vayikra 15 teaches that what she touches or if something/someone is touching her, or if someone is touching that which has ...
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Yoma 45b Ner Tamid - How to light it?

I'm trying to figure out what the text of Yoma 45b is teaching it's reader. There is this part (verse 6) about the 'perpetual fire' of the outer court of the mikdash as in Vayikra 6:6. And from this ...
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57 views

Keitsad tsolin mefarshim

I need advice on mefarshim for the seventh chapter of pessahim keitsad tsolin. Most mefarshim left it. I am looking for rishonim or kadmone achronim, like Pney Yehoshua.
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80 views

The comparison of the altar with the heart

I read this on the Chabad website In his Likkutei Torah (Devarim 78d) Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi explains that the altars form the whole heart of the Jew. And corresponding to the two altars ...
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Aish Tamid v.s. Ner Tamid

I noticed some similarities between the aish tamid (Leviticus 6:6) and the ner tamid (Exodus 27:20) and wondered if there's a connection between these two and if they share similar symbolisms?
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Israel as the moon which reflects the light of the sun which is HaShem?

I can't remember the source but there was a teaching in which Israel was compared to the moon and HaShem to the sun as a metaphor in which Israel should reflect the light of HaShem. Does anyone know ...
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A command given before it's actually commanded?

I noticed something strange in the parshe of Tetzaveh regards the verse of Shemot 27:20 in which HaShem commands Moshe saying: "And thou shalt command the children of Israel, that they bring unto thee ...
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36 views

A heap of people and ingathering of food

Is there any connection between the word אסף (to gather, collect) and אסם (literally a barn or storehouse but could be from an unised root meaning to heap up). I wondered because there is a feast in ...
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32 views

Could the narrative of Exodus 4:24-26 have happened at another moment in time?

HaShem commands Moshe to do ׳all wonders׳ which HaShem appointed in his hand before Pharaoh once he arrives in Egypt (Shemot 4:21), but despite all wonders - HaShem informs Moshe - Pharaoh will not ...
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Fasting, Yom Kippur

In relation to this question, I would like to know why Vayikra 16:31 says v'initem, often translated as afflicting, cause if afflicting is about fasting then why isn't the word tzom צום used if this ...
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118 views

Source for “Each word of Rashi worth gold”

Rashi is essential for every Torah study and his peirush surely has motivated many to seek the secrets of hebrew text. I recall heard many times that, after it was written (in times with no printing ...
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What are “rashei pispasin”?

In Middot 2:6 and 4:5, it says that רָאשֵׁי פִסְפָּסִין divided between different areas of the Beit haMikdash, specifically between the Ezrat Kohanim and Ezrat Yisrael, and between the areas above the ...
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Who was uncircumcised, and by whom at which time and why was this person sought to be killed?

What exactly is happening in the passage about the circumcision of Shemot 4:24-26? First of all, who was met, sought to kill and let from - at which time in the story did this occur - and by whom? ...
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אדנים - Singular vs. Plural

I don't know if this is more Hebrew or if it is about biblical explication. In Malachi 1:6, the text reads וְאִם־אֲדוֹנִ֣ים אָנִי֩ which is translated (on Sefaria and cChabad) as "If I am a master" ...
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The Meshech Chochma on Bereishis 49:26 and Rashi on Bereishis 43:34

The Meshech Chochma on Bereishis 49:26 comments: (Source(s) from Sefaria.org) ברכות אביך גברו על ברכות הורי וכו' תהיין וכו' נזיר אחיו הענין. דכל בניו של יעקב היו מצערים את אביהם במה שלא הגידו לו ...
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Source Radak psalm 110

In the Koren Tehillim on Psalm 110 there is a footnote stating that: Radak goes as far as to present a 'Christian' interpretation of our psalm, which he persuasively refutes on both linguistic and ...
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Midrash digest in English on the Web?

Where on the Internet might it be possible to find a summary of the most important midrashim (aggadot) for each parshah in English? Something like The Midrash Says but online. Even less thorough, eg ...
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234 views

Homosexual behavior from nature not prohibited? [closed]

I watched a Dutch Jewish television program about someone who shows his love for the Talmud and tries to translate it and give some interpretations of it. At the end of the program he asks the ...
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58 views

Yaacov's refusal to use Yitzhak's wealth

This is a question my son asked I couldn't answer. Yitzhok was extremely wealthy. When sending out Eliezer to bring Rivka, Abraham wrote him an inheritance bill for Yitzhok. When Yaakov "ran away" he ...
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134 views

'עם' & 'את' based words in the story of Lot and Avram

I don't know the exact sources but I remembered some commentaries from the Malbim and Vilna Gaon which point out a difference between 'את'-based words and 'עם'-based words (both translated to mean '...
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84 views

Who went with whom? Lot and Avram

Genesis 12:4 reads: Vayelech Avram... Avram went according as HaShem had sproken to him, vayelech Lot ito, and Lot went with him. But the next verse reads: Vayikach Avram.. et Lot, and Avram took Lot, ...
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The why and how of Chag Ha'Ahava

What's the story/history/reason behind calling the 15th of the month Av 'Chag Ha'Ahava' ? And why, and how was or is this 'Chag Ha'Ahava' celebrated?
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126 views

Orah, Or and Torah

I found this on the Aish website: The accurate meaning of “Torah” is twofold. Firstly it comes from the word “הוֹרָה,” which means teaching. More precisely it means “teaching with direction,” i.e. ...
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373 views

Why “who did not make me a goy” when Hashem told Avram he would make him a great “goy”?

There is this blessing/declaration which we recite everyday: "Baruch Atah Adonai Eloheinu Melech Ha'Olam, shelo asani goy." But why is it expressed this way? Why the usage of the term goy Didn't ...
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Is there a commentary concordance?

I gather that there are both printed as well as on-line concordances for Tanac"h where one could enter a word or phrase and a list of matches appears. Is there such a thing like a Rash"i or other ...
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291 views

Yesh Me'Ayin - A transformation from a state of ‘nothing’ to ‘something’

Recently I came across this teaching from Chassidic or Kabalistic works which apparently has something to do with our 'task' in this world: Hayom Yom: Tackling Life's Tasks; Translated from the ...
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125 views

The I, the Self which makes us do things independent of G-d

I watched a video of R' Mendel Kessin (20:58-37:52) in which he talks about 4 levels of arrogance, and the concept of "yesh od milvado" presented by the Yetzer HaRah inside us. What he explains is ...
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What are the 3 worlds of the Kli Yakar?

The Kli Yakar talks about 3 created worlds. What is he referring to? Kli Yakar Bereshit 1:1: ‏ויש עוד דרך שלישי, אבל אין כל אדם יכול לעמוד עליו והוא להכיר מציאת‏ השם ית' מתוך החקירה וידיעת ...
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Freedom of interpretation [closed]

On one side verses like Devarim 4:2 and 12:32 teach us not to add nor to subtract, on the other side there seem to be this freedom of interpretation regards doing the mitzvot. Ofcourse there are ...
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Where does the word תורתי and different aplliable roots learn us?

(From the pealim.com website) The word להורות comes from ירה and gives הורה (past tense, 3rd person, masculine singular; "he/it taught", or as a imperative 2nd person, masculine, singular: "[to a ...
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Two roots applied to the same verses

I was looking up the word להורות on the pealim.com website, from the root ירה. And it gave all kinds of conjugations. But it also gave some related words one of those was: הוראה. Both seem to have to ...
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111 views

Is there any brachah for putting on a headscarf?

Is there any Brachah for putting on a טיכל or מטפחת (headscarf) - like when one puts on his tallit or like an act like washing ones hands? Same applies to a כיפה or יארמולקע. And if there are no ...
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Why was it that Lot and the place he fleed to were saved from the destruction of Sodom and Gemorah?

Bereshit 12:4 Lot went with him (Avraham).. 13:1 Lot with him (Avraham).. 13:5 And Lot also, who went with Avram.. After these points Lot goes on a seperate way from Avraham, but HaShem still shows ...
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Avraham: Two different groups of people blessed on two different pieces of ground? Or maybe not

In Bereshit 12:3 HaShem tells Avram: וַאֲבָֽרְכָה֙ מְבָ֣רְכֶ֔יךָ וּמְקַלֶּלְךָ֖ אָאֹ֑ר וְנִבְרְכ֣וּ בְךָ֔ כֹּ֖ל מִשְׁפְּחֹ֥ת הָֽאֲדָמָֽה׃ And I will bless them that bless thee, and him that ...
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How does scattering and giving different languages help to solve the problem?

In what way does confounding the language of the people, and scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth (Bereshit 11:7-9) help to correct the wrong? Bereshit 11:4 teaches that people wanted ...
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Making a great name

HaShem tells Avra(ha)m that He will make his name great (Bereshit 12:2), but in the generations before Avram to make one's own name great doesn't seem to be such a great thing (Bereshit 6:4 and 11:4). ...
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Two cycles of moadim [closed]

The major moadim (as mentioned in Vayikra 23) seem to be divided into two main cycles; the Tishri cycle in the fall and the Nisan cycle in the spring. The first festival in Tishri is Rosh HaShanah, ...
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172 views

Connection between the three Atzeret?

I noticed that there are three moments called Atzeret. The seventh day of Pesach (Deuteronomy 16:8) Shavuot (Pesachim 68b) Shemini Atzeret (Leviticus 23:36) But what is the connection between these ...
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23 views

Atzeret to gather or store?

Atzeret (עצרת) comes from the root עצר which means (nifal, as a verb) to stop, be delayed or to be arrested. But I also heard that R.S.Hirsch explains it means 'to collect, to store or to gather' as ...
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59 views

Moadim a time to witness?

The word Moadim (מועדים), Moadei (מועדי) or singular Mo'ed (מועד) is most often translated as a appointed (fixed) time (or season). From the visual look of it these words seem to have a connection ...
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95 views

Atzeret: Shavuot v.s. Simchat Torah

Both Shemini Atzeret/Simchat Torah as Shavuot are called 'Atzeret', both are about Matan Torah. In what way are they comparable, and in which way are they different if both celebrate Matan Torah?
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27 views

Why does the letter Hei stands for Shechinah

Why is it the letter ה which represents or is connected with the Shechinah? What is the explanation behind this idea?
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50 views

Source for Adam being made with the letter Hey

I know of this gemarah teaching (see also Midrash Rabah 12:2) about Bereshit 2:4 which teaches that the phrase: 'Eileh toldot hashamayim v'ha'aretz b'hibaram' could be read as 'b'Hey baram', that ...