Questions tagged [how-to]

Questions about the practical advice regarding how to apply Judaism in real life. NOT for questions regarding p'sak halacha (practical halachic advice) -- consult your local Orthodox rabbi (CYLOR) for that.

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8
votes
3answers
296 views

Consulting a local orthodox rabbi if there isn't one?

For questions where I'm supposed to consult my local orthodox rabbi, if there isn't one, what am I supposed to do? There is a LOR in the city where I live (a Chabad shliach) but he frequently declares ...
11
votes
4answers
994 views

What's an elegant way to avoid social contact with untzinius or attractive women?

There's times when women I'm attracted to visit our home or are friends of my wife and I don't feel comfortable completely ignoring them or telling my wife to not invite them. I'm not sure how my wife ...
4
votes
3answers
289 views

How do I repair a damaged friendship?

I am seeking specifically-Jewish wisdom on the following question. Our rabbis have something to say on just about every aspect of life, but I'm not sure where I should be looking (or even what ...
15
votes
2answers
3k views

I am not Jewish but would like to visit a MO synagogue to pray occasionally on Shabbat. What is the best course?

I have studied Judaism for five years privately but also with the assistance of friends. There isn't a shul in the city where I live so most Shabbats I pray at home. Occasionally I have driven into ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

Explaining to children why we don't celebrate Halloween

Without delving into the Pagan origins of Halloween (or even discussing it altogether - as it may not be allowed l'halocho), how would you encourage Jewish children who've celebrated Halloween in the ...
11
votes
7answers
1k views

What is the best way to keep bugs out of the sukkah?

What is the best way to keep bugs, specifically mosquitoes, out of a sukkah on Yom Tov? I've looked into various candles, tiki torches, etc., but they won't last through both days of Yom Tov.
7
votes
4answers
8k views

What is the easiest and cheapest way to build a kosher sukkah?

I'm looking to build an 8ft x 10ft x8ft(height) sukkah. How can I do that in the easiest (requiring little to no handiman skills) and cheapest way possible? I have 1 wall of my home which I can use as ...
0
votes
0answers
74 views

Preparing for Rosh Hashana during Elul

I hear often about the need for preparing for Rosh Hashana during Elul. Can anyone offer some practical suggestions as to what primarily this preparation entails. Sourced answers, only, please.
8
votes
2answers
111 views

A child's tendency to skip words corrected/prompted by an instructor

When I am helping my young child say Birkat Hamazon or other prayers, I sometimes correct her pronunciation of a word or prompt her when she forgets what the next word is. In these situations, she ...
7
votes
2answers
543 views

How does one request a haskama (approbation)?

Are there any rules or or general best-practices for requesting an approbation (הסכמה/haskama)? Can an approbation that was sent based on an incomplete manuscript still be used if changes are made to ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

What steps are required to make aliyah to Israel?

As a Jew born in the USA, if I wanted to move to Israel, what steps would I have to take? Can someone who has done so describe what the process involves? I don't know anyone who has.
4
votes
1answer
214 views

How do we meet Jews without the religious worship? [closed]

How can people of Jewish heritage meet others of like mind when they are new to a city? That is, without the trappings of organized RELIGIOUS worship, etc. We are an adult married couple, with adult ...
3
votes
1answer
271 views

Step-by-step Kashering: Libbun

What is the step by step process of Kashering for the method of Libbun? Assume I've never done it before, and I am taking a recently used, non-Kosher oven and stove, as well as a frying pan, for ...
4
votes
2answers
373 views

Step-by-step Kashering: Hag'alah

What is the step by step process of Kashering for the method of Hag'alah? Assume I've never done it before, and I am taking a recently used, non-Kosher metal pot and a number of cutlery and cooking ...
2
votes
2answers
537 views

Step-by-step Kashering: 'Iruy

What is the step by step method of Kashering for the method of 'Iruy? Assume I've never done it before, and I am taking a recently used, non-Kosher metal sink for Passover. (Maybe I'm in a hotel.) It ...
14
votes
8answers
1k views

What can I feed a vegetarian at my Pesach seder?

Wait wait, it's not a question for Seasoned Advice. :-) I have a vegetarian (not vegan) coming to my seder this year. Most of the vegetarian staples (as far as I know) are chametz or kitniyot. For ...
45
votes
12answers
2k views

How do I get myself to yearn for moshiach if I'm comfortable in the diaspora?

Intellectually I know that we're supposed to yearn for the coming of the mashiach and the in-gathering in Eretz Yisrael. I know that one of the Rambam's 13 principles calls for this. We pray for ...
3
votes
4answers
212 views

How to explain Kashruth simply?

How can one explain Kashruth to a curious colleague without too much complexity? I get curious questions all the time, mostly about the laws and about rabbis blessing the food, which is, of course, a ...
2
votes
3answers
1k views

How to teach the Purim story to children?

As a parent raising a small child, I find it difficult explaining the story of Megillat Esther. Are there any methods (rabbinic precedence or otherwise) of explaining to a young child the violent ...
3
votes
1answer
408 views

Which plants are most suitable for sukkah roofing?

In South Africa palm branches are very popular as schach because they stay green for long and cover a lot of space per branch. Many palm branch sellers advertise around sukkot time, and every year the ...
12
votes
5answers
352 views

How can I make my Judaism more enjoyable?

I really enjoy being Jewish, most of the time, but let's be honest, sometimes it can be difficult to enjoy Judaism. Sometimes it's the little things, like having to wait those extra minutes to eat ...
6
votes
2answers
220 views

How is shechitah done without machinery?

Ah, Africa... A work colleague and I have been comparing animal slaughtering techniques in our respective traditions. He says that for a large animal like a cow that cannot be restrained manually they ...
12
votes
2answers
832 views

Is there a way to tell if a Pitom of an Etrog has been broken, or was grown that way?

Is there a way to tell whether the Pitum of an Etrog has been broken off or whether the Etrog had just grown that way (without a pitum)? (I just seem to be a little worried about mine, so any advice ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

How to prepare/give a good drasha

I'm always inspired how people are able to get up in front of a crowd (big or small) and deliver a drasha or dvar Torah that is really good. How does one go about preparing a drasha? What's a starting ...
13
votes
1answer
15k views

First trip to the synagogue! Tips and advice please!

I am preparing for my first trip to a synagogue after the High Holy Days. My first visit will be to a Modern Orthodox Synagogue. I have interacted with the Rabbi by email and we will be meeting ...
5
votes
5answers
4k views

Advice for Lighting in a Sukkah

I'm seeking advice for safe, cost-effective lighting inside a Sukkah. My goals are: Minimize risk of fire. Even florescent lights can get hot enough to spark dry kindling in certain circumstances. ...
17
votes
3answers
3k views

How can you quit a habit of visiting inappropriate websites?

The Torah teaches that, if you're an unmarried man, watching pornography is harmful to your soul. See, for example, this article by Chabad rabbi Tzvi Freeman. (If you're married and need to watch ...
10
votes
1answer
363 views

How to check your own Shaatnez

Is there a guide or a maybe a video on how to check your own clothes for Shaatnez? Does anyone here know? If so, can you explain?
26
votes
20answers
7k views

How can I curb my sexual desire?

I am looking for the best and most practical suggestion as to what a man can do to curb his yetzer hara (evil inclination) for sexual desire. Please provide sources for why your answer should be ...
25
votes
4answers
928 views

Maintaining Tzniut in Uncomfortable Social Situations

How can a teenage girl, who recently started practicing the laws of tzniut as well as feasible, balance those laws with the prohibition against embarrassing her family members, who are embarrassed to ...
30
votes
8answers
1k views

How can we get people to stop talking (much, loudly) during minyan?

I know that lots of minyanim have the talking problem; has anybody solved it? I daven with a weekday shacharit minyan that has a noise problem. A couple of people are the main sources of the problem ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

Being a houseguest in a non-frum or non-Jewish home

I'm Jewish, so I have to keep many laws in mind. Kashrut, tefillin, yichud, kol isha, and more. When staying as a houseguest in a non-frum or non-Jewish home, what are some of the issues I might face?...
7
votes
2answers
520 views

Best way to destroy (maaser sheni) coins

This year (5772) is the fourth year of the Shemitta cycle, and as such, this Pesach is the time of Biur Maaserot. Does anyone have suggestions (from experience or sources) regarding how to best ...
6
votes
1answer
210 views

How to explain Matzah Shemurah in 18 minutes

(Not to be confused with this question) How can one explain Matzah to a curious colleague in under 18 minutes? So far I have been asked: Why does it need to be extra watched? (I've shown her Sh. 12:...
10
votes
3answers
273 views

How to avoid helping someone sin?

Are there any tips anyone would care to provide to help one avoid (or get out of) a workplace situation in which one has been asked to assist someone do something that violates Halachah? Examples ...
32
votes
11answers
1k views

Seder advice when with people who aren't interested?

This may have some things in common with beginner's seder advice, but it's different enough that I'm asking separately. For family-obligation reasons, I sometimes find myself at a seder where most of ...
13
votes
3answers
439 views

Beginners' Seder Advice

I'm going to be at a seder this year with young children who are familiar with the basic structure of the haggadah. Some will likely have some of the classic divrei torah prepared for them to say. I'm ...
13
votes
2answers
437 views

Advanced Seder Advice

I'm going to be at a seder this year with other adults who are all relatively familiar with the text and structure of the haggadah. Most have heard many of the classic divrei torah many times. I'm ...
8
votes
2answers
546 views

How to fold Esther's scroll

The custom is to unroll the m'gila and fold it over, 'page' over 'page', before reading it in public on Purim, then to roll it up again before reciting the b'racha after the reading. Suppose there's ...
5
votes
1answer
301 views

How to survive Purim

How do you survive a very busy Purim? Purim is a very interactive holiday and has a number of Mitzvot that need to be observed that intersect with, and are often dependent on, other people's ...
32
votes
7answers
1k views

How to respond to “but he does”

I mentioned to my coworker that I can't eat Domino's pizza, not even without meat, as it's not kosher. He pointed out in response that a fellow coworker of ours, whom I'll call Josh, and who is ...
22
votes
6answers
4k views

First steps for someone considering conversion

I am 25 years old and I am truly interested in converting. I too also only believe in G-d. I live my life to certain rules that others I see aren't strong enough to live by. I want to know what I ...
11
votes
6answers
1k views

How to tell someone about Shomer Negiah

As I'm sure that many of you have had to "break it" to a coworker or friend that you're Shomer Negiah, have you found a strategy or choice of words that seems most effective? As I wasn't raised frum ...
21
votes
13answers
9k views

How to learn gemara independently

Is there an organized path that a Ba'al Teshuva can follow to learn Gemara and prepare the Daf by himself? I mean after he is able to learn with Artscroll.
12
votes
4answers
647 views

How to keep bees out of the Sukkah?

Many years (but not all), we have had bee problems in the Sukkah. This is probably caused by the fact that we continue to use honey for dipping the Challah throughout Sukkos. What are some practical ...
13
votes
3answers
10k views

Simple Sukkah plans using dimensional lumber from Home Depot?

I'm planning to build a sukkah using dimensional lumber from Home Depot for the frame and some tarp for the sides. It should be big enough to fit 2 adults and 2 small kids, but generally as small as ...
11
votes
5answers
3k views

How do I avoid thirst when fasting?

I started fasting on Yom Kippur as an adult, about 10 years ago. A couple times I had to drink a glass of water either after Kol Nidre or before Shacharit, because I felt completely dehydrated (I did ...
20
votes
4answers
1k views

How do you handle possible Shabbat issues when receiving a jury summons?

The last time I was summoned for jury duty it was mid-week in January, and I made a point of telling the lawyers during questioning that I would have to be home before sunset on Friday. They were not ...
14
votes
2answers
280 views

How do I say vidui in Selichos in a meaningful way?

We say vidui three times in selichos. Many words are uttered in a relatively short time. How can we do this in a meaningful way that is not "vidui peh"? I have heard tell of one of the gedolei ...
10
votes
2answers
848 views

How does Hagbah work on a Sephardic Torah case?

How does one do Hagbah on a Torah in a Sephardic Torah case, such as one of these silver cases (picture courtesy of Hadad Brothers) : See also the Ashkenazi version of this question.