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Questions tagged [halacha-theory]

Questions about theoretical issues about psak and general halacha concepts

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Reincarnations - Let's work out how many one would need to be personally obligated in all 613 Mitzvot in the superset

In a nutshell, the Arizal says (Shaar Gilgulim Ch. 16) we are reincarnated in order that every Jew gets a chance to experience all 613 mitzvot as a chiyuv (personal obligation) at least once. My ...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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8 votes
0 answers
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Should people davening alone daven together?

If a few men know there will be no minyan so they choose to daven biyechidut, is there merit to their staying "together" either in shul or not? Is there a notion of "kahal" or &...
rosends's user avatar
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8 votes
0 answers
544 views

If the Dodo bird had a tradition of being kosher & was resurrected, would it be OK to eat again?

Came across an article titled "Could scientists resurrect the dodo bird?" and it made me wonder: suppose there was a mesorah that the Dodo bird was kosher before it went extinct in 1681. If we in ...
alicht's user avatar
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8 votes
1 answer
366 views

Would suicide be considered acceptable if it was done to prevent yourself being sacrificed to an idol deity?

This is an oddly specific question but the thought came to me and I wanted to know what your opinions on it would be. Historically speaking, human sacrifice was a regular occurrence in various pagan ...
user avatar
7 votes
0 answers
217 views

Why are "Chiddushei" seforim rarely cited in the Nosi Keilim?

I noticed that when quoting Rishonim, Beis Yosef/Nosei Keilim tend to focus on Poskim (Rif (and main commentary)/Rosh/Rambam, Mordechai, Teruma, Rabbeinu Yerucham, etc.) and responsa. Very rarely do ...
ertert3terte's user avatar
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7 votes
1 answer
311 views

Moving with magnets: what's the status in halacha?

If I move something on Shabbos with the force of a magnet, is that considered Halachicly like I move it with my hands (גופו), with my force (כוחו), indirect (גרמא), or have I done nothing? This is ...
Orion's user avatar
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7 votes
1 answer
388 views

What defines a "בהמה" (also "חיה") for the application of kosher-animal indicators?

As discussed in *Asher Bamayim* (אשר במים) in kashrus halacha, *Tzomeach* (צוֹמֵחַ) in kashrus halacha, and *Of* (עוֹף) in kashrus halacha, there are different rules used to determine the kashrus ...
MTL's user avatar
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6 votes
0 answers
77 views

What determines whether things which are forbidden because of a danger are still prohibited once we know there's no danger?

There are certain things which are prohibited because of danger, many of which are listed here. A good number of them are confirmed by modern science to not cause any (physical) harm (ex. meat and ...
DonielF's user avatar
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6 votes
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R' Chanina B"T's strange behavior at his execution (Kalah 5, 4)

We all know the heroic story of R' Chanina Ben Tardion in its version in Avodah Zarah 18b as he was wrapped in Sefer Torah and burned alive. Interestingly, Masechet Kalah 5, 4 (sorry couldn't find a ...
Al Berko's user avatar
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6 votes
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108 views

How did Tur and Mechaber omit explicit Mitzvos?

When answering to "is-holding-memories-considered-bearing-a-grudge" I noticed that while נקימה ונטירה (revenge and grudges) are two explicit Mitzvos DeOrayso counted by Rambam, Smag, Chinuch, etc, ...
Al Berko's user avatar
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6 votes
0 answers
250 views

Suicide to prevent Zombification

This is a serious question which deals with what is now a fictional construct, but one that has ramifications and which has been dealt with (in other situations) by halachic discussion such as this ...
rosends's user avatar
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6 votes
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224 views

makhloket poskim and hatarat nedarim

Recently, the OU decided to certify quinoa for Pesach. Formerly, the OU held by the view of Rav Yisroel Belsky that quinoa is kitniyot, or at least that Rav Belsky's view created sufficient doubt to ...
Shivaram Lingamneni's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
589 views

Is a psik reisha d'lo nicha or d'lo echpat judged against a communal standard?

If I perform an action on Shabbos which will cause a secondary (forbidden) action, the secondary action is assessed as to whether it is desirable, detrimental or neutral (as per Difference between ...
rosends's user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers
416 views

Why a married woman is exempt from honoring her parents?

Although the wife should listen to the husband and make her best to please him, it is not a Mitzvah at all, and there are no DeOraytah obligations on the wife toward her husband (Rambam Ishut 22-24). ...
Al Berko's user avatar
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6 votes
1 answer
173 views

Halachic status of ישמך אלקים כאפרים וכמנשה

Yaakov blessed Ephraim and Menashe by stating that future generations would bless their children by saying "ישמך אלקים כאפרים וכמנשה" - "God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh" (Gen. 48:20). Was this ...
Heshy's user avatar
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6 votes
1 answer
222 views

Practical עשה דוחה לא תעשה

There are a few examples frequently offered for the rule "עשה דוחה לא תעשה": Someone whose garment has four corners and linen can nonetheless put wool tzitzis on it. This is unlikely nowadays, when ...
msh210's user avatar
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5 votes
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What if one chos vishalom accidentally kills someone right before techias hameisim?

B"H The Rambam in Hilchos rotzeiach 7:9-12 discuss how one who accidentally kills someone and is exiled to a city of refuge never leaves, until the Kohen Gadol passes away. The question is, what ...
B''H Bi'ezras -- Boruch Hashem's user avatar
5 votes
0 answers
128 views

Minhag vs Halacha - 3 types of clashes

There are minhagim that seemingly go against halacha. I want to know essays or sources that cover this age-old debate. It is my view that these minhagim are of three types: Machlokes of major poskim ...
Yoreinu's user avatar
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5 votes
0 answers
78 views

May a Kohen with Auto-Brewery Syndrome Duchan?

This question is related to another question asked (How much alcohol does one need to consume in order to be halachically drunk or intoxicated?). Auto-Brewery Syndrome is a condition in which fungi or ...
Moshe's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
206 views

תתאה גבר in space

On earth the rule is that תתאה גבר, if kosher and not kosher mix in a hot application, it depends which is “תתאה” bottom. If the hot is bottom it’s all forbidden, if the top is hot than it’s only ...
mroll's user avatar
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5 votes
0 answers
74 views

Why learning from examples vs learning from Halakhah?

Our Talmud uses different methods to teach Halachot, one of them is telling stories about Rabbis and concluding the Halachot from their behavior. One of the famous is R' Akiva in Brochos 62 (check the ...
Al Berko's user avatar
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5 votes
0 answers
132 views

How do we determine what is inevitable enough to be a Psik Reisha?

Regarding a psik reisha, my earlier question focused on whether the resultant action is judged according to a standard, but I am also unclear about what determines the "inevitable" nature of the ...
rosends's user avatar
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5 votes
0 answers
176 views

A priori decision to ask multiple rabbis

There is a known law that if one has a ruling from a rabbi, you should not go to a second rabbi for a ruling except under specific circumstances such as where you have real doubts as to the ...
Nic's user avatar
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5 votes
0 answers
80 views

Why do we follow the "basra'a" - later one?

We know in Shas that in various situations, when there is a machlokes as to how to pasken, we follow the opinion of he that was chronologically later. (Ex. see Tosafos to B'rachos 13b s.v. Amar Rava.) ...
Talmid's user avatar
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5 votes
0 answers
164 views

Is there a chazakah (halachic presumption) that an Eruv is down after a blizzard?

I remember, I was once at shul Friday night, and it was just starting to snow and it was predicted to be a huge blizzard. The Rabbi got up and announced that tomorrow people should work under the ...
Tzafnas Paneach's user avatar
5 votes
0 answers
98 views

Determining Normative Halacha

I don't really understand the process for establishing what "the halacha" is in a particular case. I know that there are rules in the talmud to decide whom the halacha follows when there are ...
rosends's user avatar
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5 votes
0 answers
116 views

Poskening Leniently

For situations where a Rav is searching for a lenient ruling, such as in cases of major financial loss or aguna, etc., what are the guidelines that he must follow? Is he allowed to rule like a single ...
ray's user avatar
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5 votes
0 answers
127 views

Pouring honey into a hot beverage

Can pouring honey into a hot beverage, such as tea, create a Kashruth concern? In particular, if you pour honey into hot tea with milk, can you later use the same bottle of honey to add honey to a ...
Seth J's user avatar
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5 votes
0 answers
253 views

What constitutes a "Hesped" (eulogy)?

There are certain dates throughout the year when one may not give a "Hesped" (eulogy) because of a certain level of happiness associated with those dates. However, I've attended funerals conducted on ...
Seth J's user avatar
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5 votes
0 answers
165 views

Following the stringencies of different opinions

There is a tangential discussion in 'Eruvin, Daf 6b-7a about whether or not we can take the stringencies of two conflicting opinions. The Gemara seems adamant that we cannot, though there are examples ...
Seth J's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
150 views

Clarification on the rule "זה נהנה וזה לא חסר"?

The source is in B"K 20. What is meant by "זה נהנה" and what is meant by "זה לא חסר" - is that only direct monetary damage, indirect damage, psychological/spiritual damage, temporal inconvenience etc?...
Al Berko's user avatar
  • 26k
5 votes
1 answer
66 views

Medicines v. Spices on Shabbos

Medicines are forbidden on shabbos for the non-critically ill because in the old days, they had to be ground with a pestle beforehand. Must not spices also be ground? How come spices are not also ...
Clint Eastwood's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
243 views

Web-hosted Baby/Security Cams - tzniut?

There is a whole new world of baby cams that, for free, host the feed online for you to access anywhere. You simply create an account on their hosting site and you get access to the live camera feed ...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
92 views

Mevushal kol tzorko - what is it for meat?

We poskin (OH 318(4)) that the law of cooking on Shabbos continues until solid food passes מאכל בן דרוסאי, and reaches מבושל כל צרכו - "completely cooked". What does "completely cooked&...
MichoelR's user avatar
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4 votes
1 answer
150 views

Beside "לא תבשל", what phrases appear several times in the Torah and interpreted as different Halachot?

Famously, "לא תבשל" appears three times in the Torah in different verses: "רֵאשִׁ֗ית בִּכּוּרֵי֙ אַדְמָ֣תְךָ֔ תָּבִ֕יא בֵּ֖ית ה"א לֹֽא־תְבַשֵּׁ֥ל גְּדִ֖י בַּחֲלֵ֥ב אִמֹּֽו׃" ...
Al Berko's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
155 views

“Einstein ketzos”

Shalom chevra, I have heard that the ketzos hachoshen on the sugya of matana al menas lehachzir is called the “Einstein ketzos”. If someone knows why that is, and can let us know that would be great!
Mevakeish's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
75 views

List of halakhos that are only relevant in the era of Moshiach

In Zevachim 45a (s.v. הלכתא למשיחא), Tosfos provides a list of instances in Shas where the gemara rules in favour of a particular halakhic position that will only be practically relevant in the era of ...
Shimon bM's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
130 views

What is the source to forbid Toldos תולדות?

There are times that Torah gives specific "examples" of what is forbidden (e.g. 39 melachos given via a reference to the actions done in the משכן or through other means; Or The Torah ...
Chaim's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
105 views

Gemara Paskens for itself

Why does the Gemara decide to pasken in a select few cases and otherwise leaves the machlokes open ended for us to decide?
Alexander Mermelstein's user avatar
4 votes
0 answers
41 views

How did the Rabbis know that people were intentionally leaving food on the stove?

The Talmud (Shabbat 38a) records the following rabbinic decree: מאי גזירתא דאמר רב יהודה בר שמואל א"ר אבא אמר רב כהנא אמר רב בתחילה היו אומרים המבשל בשבת בשוגג יאכל במזיד לא יאכל וה"ה לשוכח ...
Alex's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
56 views

How many times does the law follow Samuel in ritual practice?

The Talmud (Shabbat 22a) records the following: איתמר רב אמר אין מדליקין מנר לנר ושמואל אמר מדליקין רב אמר אין מתירין ציצית מבגד לבגד ושמואל אמר מתירין מבגד לבגד רב אמר אין הלכה כרבי שמעון בגרירה ...
Alex's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
99 views

A woman saying Shehechyanu on Channukah

I have been reviewing some discussions of a married woman's obligation to light Channukah candles. It appears that according to some, a married woman, whose husband is lighting at home does not light. ...
rosends's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
33 views

Do we have Hilchot Shotrim (Policemen laws)?

"מִצְוַת עֲשֵׂה שֶׁל תּוֹרָה לְמַנּוֹת שׁוֹפְטִים וְשׁוֹטְרִים בְּכָל מְדִינָה וּמְדִינָה וּבְכָל פֶּלֶךְ וּפֶלֶךְ שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים טז יח) "שֹׁפְטִים וְשֹׁטְרִים תִּתֶּן לְךָ בְּכָל שְׁעָרֶיךָ". ...
Al Berko's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
72 views

What happens if Hebrew Slave goes on strike?

@Joel's answer to my previous question "whats-so-slave-ish-in-the-hebrew-slave" showed a possible difference between a slave and an employee - the later can simply walk away. That made me think: what ...
Al Berko's user avatar
  • 26k
4 votes
0 answers
114 views

The Tzidokim and Halacha

During Beis Sheini, as far as i understand the tzidokim were the majority of Cohanim at the time. And as far as i understand they sat on the Sanhedrin. When we see a machlokes in the Mishnah and we ...
user avatar
4 votes
0 answers
44 views

The sins mentioned in על חטא - why those?

This question about the "אשמנו" list is still left unanswered. My question is about the apparent inconsistency of the "על חטא שחטאנו" list - so many different categories of sins are listed in the ABC ...
Al Berko's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
124 views

"A time to act for Hashem" and doing whatever you want

Who under what circumstances has the right to declare that a violation of halacha is in order because "it is a time to act for Hashem"? I have by now a few times seen this posuk from Tehillim used as ...
SAH's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
38 views

When do we force people not to behave like Sedom

Inspired by DonielF's comment (Further, there are very limited cases in which we apply כופין על מדת סדום. Just because it’s זה נהנה וזה לא חסר doesn’t mean that we can force him to give his stuff.) to ...
Danny Schoemann's user avatar
4 votes
0 answers
45 views

May one broker the sale non kosher restaurants?

one may not do business with foods that are forbidden to eat (shulchan aruch yore dea 117) However, if a person's business is not selling the treif item and will never comes to own any of the product ...
Laser123's user avatar
  • 1,269
4 votes
0 answers
110 views

Descrating one Shabbat for many

The Talmud states that one may violate the Shabbat to save a life, because it's worth violating one Shabbat to let someone keep many in the future. Does this principle apply in other cases? For ...
Ypnypn's user avatar
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