Questions tagged [halacha]

NOTE: Like Wikipedia, this site makes no guarantee of validity, and does not offer professional (particularly rabbinic) advice. Treat information from this site like it came from a crowd of your friends. // Jewish law. Specifically, the legal process beginning with the written Torah and continuing through the Mishna, Talmud, and the legal codes (e.g., Rambam, Tur, Shulchan Aruch).

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6
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1answer
202 views

Why hold the second loaf unwrapped?

We use two loaves of bread at Shabas and yom tov meals. Some people cut into both loaves, but some only cut into one, merely holding the other with it while reciting the b'racha. Rav Chayim Pinchas ...
11
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4answers
884 views

What is the halachic status of adult conjoined twins?

It is rare but possible for conjoined twins to remain alive and healthy into adulthood, such as is the case with Abby and Brittany Hensel. They have distinct sets of heads, hearts, and lungs. They ...
7
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3answers
1k views

Government “swearing-in” ceremony

Typically in the US, members of Congress and other government officials are sworn in on a bible appropriate to their religion. Is it appropriate for Jews to be sworn in on a Tana"ch, or should some ...
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2answers
64 views

Embarrass or allow

If someone is about to do an aveira (D'rabbanan or D'eroisa) b'mazid, (but you don't know that, so you give him the benefit of the doubt - I guess) is it better to stop him, by screaming out and ...
3
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1answer
61 views

Benefiting from a Jew's planting on Shabbos b'shogeg

The Preface - hakdama to the English edition of Volume 1 of Shmiras Shabbos k'Hilchaso writes that if a Jew b'shogeg (mistakenly) plants or sows a seed on Shabbos, or anything like that where some ...
11
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3answers
950 views

What should a woman who can only do Chalitza do if her Yevam can't do it?

In some cases of Zikas Yibum, there is a Rabbinic prohibition against their doing Yibum (eg. the deceased husband's brother is a Mamzer, cf. Shulchan Aruch Even Haezer 174) and as such they must ...
17
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1answer
297 views

How to determine “population statistics” for population dependant Halachot?

There appear to be several halachot that are based on "a majority of Israel". For example: Mishnah Berachot 54a: הרואה מקום שנעשו בו נסים לישראל אומר ברוך שעשה נסים לאבותינו במקום הזה IF ONE ...
2
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1answer
72 views

May one use bread for havdallah?

One may use bread for Kiddush if wine or grape juice are not available but may one use bread for havdallah when wine or grape juice are not available?
1
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1answer
116 views

Women-only Kabbalat Shabbat

Does anyone know how women-only Kabbalat Shabbat prayer came about? I have only come across it in newspapers from about the late 2000s in some United Synagogues. Have there been cases way before this? ...
6
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1answer
107 views

maaser to your own employer

I know there are many Jews who work for schools, synagogues, soup kitchens, and other such non-profit organizations that do a community service. Many people also give maaser money to these ...
4
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1answer
178 views

Western Ashkenaz Mishnah Berurah

The Mishnah Berurah was composed with the minhagim of the Eastern Ashkenazi kehillot in mind. Is there an equivalent for the communities of Western Europe*? *The Ashkenazi communities of the ...
3
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1answer
67 views

Is one allowed to continue riding in a vehicle driven by a Gentile on Shabbat?

In reading this answer, I understand that there is no concern with riding on Shabbat. Let's say that you are driving your car before Shabbat and you have a Gentile passenger. You won't reach your ...
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2answers
44 views

What is the Halacha of establishing one's home at the onset of Shabbos?

If one cannot make it home, I heard there's a din that one sets his place where they are now upto 2000 amot. What's the source of this? What if I'm in the back of a car?
12
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4answers
447 views

Does a ger have to tovel their dishes?

When a ger finishes their conversion, must they tovel (immerse in a mikvah) their dishes? Does it matter if they had toveled them previously?
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0answers
14 views

If one decides to bentch or washes mayim acharonim can he drink? [duplicate]

If one decides to bentch or washes mayim acharonim can he drink without making a bracha?
1
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1answer
112 views

Having chumrahs that one's Rabbi doesn’t have

I was learning with my chevruta about how one should not keep Chumrahs that one's Rabbi or community doesn’t keep. I can’t remember where I learnt it. Would anyone have a reference?
4
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0answers
82 views

Is there anything wrong with using someone's “preferred pronouns”?

There are many people who identify as transgender or non-binary and request that they are treated as such by other people, which includes referencing them by the pronoun that they preferred to be ...
12
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4answers
3k views

Is a Jew permitted to have an abortion?

Under what, if any, circumstances may a Jewish woman undergo an abortion? Can a Jewish doctor perform an abortion? As each case and individual is unique, please consult your rabbi for practical ...
7
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2answers
122 views

Are there any brachos for “touching” something?

4 of the 5 senses explicitly have berachos: Taste- Shehakol food, blessings on fruits & vegetables etc (see: OC 202-207) Smell- Pleasant fragrances (OC 216) Hearing- Thunder (MB 227:5) Seeing-...
13
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3answers
201 views

Does a sotah make a bracha?

Before drinking the sotah water does the woman make a blessing? If so would it be shahakol or something else?
9
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5answers
870 views

Are Jews allowed to have hobbies?

According to the Shulchan Aruch (if I am not mistaken), every free hour that a man has should be spent in the study of the Torah. With that being the case, does that mean that anything "extra" such ...
5
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1answer
121 views

Is someone who has clinical depression allowed to take an antidepressant on Shabbos?

It’s my understanding that there’s two main categories of non-life threatening illnesses: מיחוש בעלמא, “average pain,” and נפל למשכב, one who is so sick that he’s unable to get out of bed. The former ...
4
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1answer
63 views

Socks versus shoes for the priestly blessing

I always see kohanim remove their shoes before n'si'as kapayim, even those without leather, but not their socks. In other contexts I'm familiar with, socks are the same as non-leather shoes. For ...
3
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2answers
238 views

contradiction in the aruch hashulchan

the A"H in C"M 263:2 says that mitzvas asei of hashavas aveidah(hasheiv teshiveim) applies only once you pick the object up, however in C:M 259:1 he says it starts once you see the object
15
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3answers
816 views

Is it Halachically forbidden to go to Israel?

I was recently studying Berakhot 24b when I read the following statement: 'כל העולה מבבל לא"י עובר בעשה שנאמר (ירמיהו כז, כב) בבלה יובאו ושמה יהיו עד יום פקדי אותם נאם ה' Whoever goes up from ...
0
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1answer
77 views

Are women allowed to have a boy short haircut?

According to halacha, are women permitteed to have their hair styled in a man-typical way?
3
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2answers
118 views

Eating frozen dinner warmed by non-Jew on Shabbos

Cruise offers kosher airline meal type meals for daily lunch and dinner. Is it halachically permissible to eat if warmed up by non-Jew on Shabbos (presumably with microwave)? I assume that warming ...
3
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1answer
110 views

Benefiting from a Jew's meizid melacha on Shabbos

The introduction to the first volume of the English edition of Shmiras Shabbos k'Hilchaso states that a person who does melacha b'meizid on Shabbos is forever banned from benefiting from that melacha. ...
3
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2answers
313 views

Can my bad (but not sinful) behavior create a chilul Hashem?

The Rambam (Yisodei Hatorah 5:10-11) writes that there are two ways to commit a chilul Hashem: either to sin, or to behave in a (otherwise non-sinful) manner that people view negatively. However he ...
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1answer
77 views

Is a crossdressing man obligated in tznius?

Suppose a man dresses as a woman, and he does so so well that a casual observer couldn’t tell that he’s actually a man.1 Is this man obligated in the rules of tznius as they apply to women (ex. ...
16
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2answers
473 views

Who is worthy of reciting the blessing “שנתן מחכמתו לבשר ודם” on?

On whom does one recite the blessing "שנתן מחכמתו לבשר ודם" (the blessing recited on non-Jewish scientists)? Does he have to be a Ph.D? Does he have to have inventions to his name? Did he have to ...
2
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1answer
259 views

Can a woman uncover her hair for the sake of employment?

I am aware of many poseqim who hold that in order to get and hold a job, it is permissible for men to remove their kippoth during the interview and their workday. Can a woman who badly needs ...
16
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4answers
2k views

Would a baalat teshuva need a get from each previous sexual relationship?

Would a baalat teshuva need a get from each previous sexual relationship? In light of the idea that marriage can be contracted solely through bi'ah/public knowledge of the couple's relationship (as ...
5
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1answer
50 views

What are the rules regarding resewing Torah “sheets”?

During my Yom Tov Torah reading, I noticed that two Sifrei Torah had seams that seemed (OK, a bit of a pun intended, here ;-) a bit loose. So, I have a few questions regarding some of the requirements ...
1
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1answer
313 views

Kiddush where no one person drinks a cheekful?

Suppose someone makes kiddush and distributes all the wine evenly to everyone at the table, including himself, in small cups; but there were enough people that no one person received/drank a cheekful. ...
2
votes
1answer
173 views

Do vows made in the year after a hatarat nedarim require another hatarat nedarim to annul?

Bracketing out, for a moment, the matter of the hatarot nedarim that everyone makes before Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, the text of the regular hatarat nedarim (annulment of vows) (http://halachipedia....
6
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2answers
398 views

Why isn't covering the place where hair meets the head good enough for a Sheitel?

See Can a Sheitel be made out of one's own hair? where the question wonders whether a woman is allowed to wear her own detached hair as a Sheitel. In Fred's answer, he quotes the Shiltei Giborim (...
2
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1answer
116 views

Saving a non-Jew from drowning

Some Boston-area yeshivah students recently saved a man from drowning who they didn't know was a Nazi supporter. In a comment on the story, someone claimed that the Halakhah (i.e. Jewish law) says to ...
12
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2answers
659 views

Watching TV on weekdays (not on shabbat)

Is it generally allowed to watch TV at my home (I am male and living alone)? I wrote "generally," meaning watching on a regular weekday (i.e. not Shabbat or Holiday) and just watching normal programs, ...
5
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2answers
1k views

Early maariv on 2nd day Yom Tov

A shul in my city made an early maariv for the 2nd day of yom tov. Knowing who the Rabbi is, he did not do this out of ignorance. There are 2 issues I am unclear about: Are there contemporary ...
4
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1answer
763 views

During Temple times, who can butcher a kosher animal?

During the Temple Times, for the purpose of consumption, can any Jew butcher a kosher animal or must the animal be butchered by a Cohen or a Levi? I would appreciate a rabbinical source. I just ...
12
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2answers
304 views

Sending a Torah to the Moon

According to this article, there's an organization that wants to blast a Sefer Torah into space for safe keeping on the moon. Are there any halachik problems regarding such an endeavour (and if so, ...
5
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2answers
274 views

When is a mechitza required for separation between men and women for prayers?

When is a mechitza (partition) required for separation between men and women for davening (prayers)? Is this only in a shul (synagogue) or anywhere men are praying? Is there a minimum amount of women ...
6
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2answers
144 views

When can kashrut certification be withheld?

In today's news (11 Dec 2018): "Rabbis from the Vaad HaRabanim of Flatbush, which grants kosher certification, threatened to pull their supervision of the Garden of Eat In and Orchidea if [a certain]...
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0answers
31 views

Can a jew buy pepperoni/sausage pizza for a non-jew [duplicate]

Can a Jew buy (for his own money) pepperoni/sausage pizza for his non-jewish employee as a treat/tip? For example in honor of the jew's birthday (meat an milk (that was heated together is forbidden ...
9
votes
2answers
666 views

Can you convert without a rabbi?

Disclaimer: I am already Jewish. This question for curiousity only. Obviously it is always the best idea to convert to Judaism with a proper, official beit din. Three Jewish males over the age of bar ...
1
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1answer
64 views

Child of a Levi and an Egyptian convert

From my comment here If a Levi illegally marries an Egyptian or Edomi convert, what's the status of their children? They're second generation Egyptians, so they can't marry most Jews. (But their ...
4
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0answers
42 views

Who's responsible if B puts a “hefker” sign on A's item?

Suppose Aaron leaves something in a public place, where people often leave such things without intending to forfeit them.[1] Baruch then puts a sign on the item indicating that it's forfeit and ...
2
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2answers
118 views

Ramifications of a Baby Switch [duplicate]

At the hospital 2 newborns get swapped, one Jewish for one not. 20 yrs later someone realizes what happened & informs both kids of the mistake, does their status change? Does the ‘non Jewish’ boy ...
5
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2answers
254 views

Why are Kiddushin and Nisuin done on the same day? (ie with no big gap)

Why are kiddushin and nisu'in done on the same day, with no big space in between? I understand from the mishna: מסכת כתובות ה,ב = נותנים לבתולה שנים עשר חודש משיתבע לה הבעל, לפרנס את עצמה; כשם ...