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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19
votes
2answers
1k views

How do you CYLOR after posting on judaism.stackexchange.com?

We recommend CYLOR. How do I: ask the OR a shaaloh that one has already posted on judaism.stackexchange.com. Should I acknowledge its use when asking? introduce the concept of judaism.stackexchange....
8
votes
2answers
697 views

Can an immersion heater be used to kasher a sink? Does anyone have experience with this?

Normally, to "kasher" or "kosherize" a metal sink (from non-kosher to kosher, or before Passover), you clean it out well, make sure it's used for nothing hot for 24 hours, then pour boiling water all ...
11
votes
2answers
474 views

What does one do when one needs to bentch gomel?

One who has recovered from a serious illness or accident is supposed to bentch gomel during the torah service. What do you need to know to do this? Specifically: When is the right time -- the first ...
31
votes
3answers
1k views

Keeping Kosher at a secular company

How you do deal with keeping Kosher while working at a secular company? It's easy enough to bring my own lunch everyday; what I'm not sure how to handle are events like company lunches and other ...
8
votes
8answers
781 views

Reliable Tzedakah Websites [closed]

If one is looking to give Tzedakah (charity) without leaving their chair, which reliable Jewish organizations accept donations through their websites?
28
votes
12answers
1k views

How can I make a long summer shabbat a delight?

Where I live, shabbat ends at nearly 10PM at the peak of summer, and I find it challenging to get to the end of that without starting to develop some negative feelings. I try to spend most of Shabbat ...
37
votes
23answers
9k views

How to tactfully circumvent opposite-gender handshake

Say you're a man in a professional setting, and a woman who isn't used to dealing with observant Jews stretches out her hand to greet you -- but your practice is to avoid shaking hands even in ...
7
votes
1answer
318 views

How to increase the demand for kosher food?

I live in the Hartford Connecticut area and while the population of people who practice the Jewish faith is increasing, the ability to find Kosher food is on the decline. Even the local Kosher grocery ...
6
votes
4answers
537 views

Keeping Tefillin Black

What are some suggestions for keeping the Tefiliin Retzuos (straps) black? How can I prevent the Retzuos from needing to be painted and/or replaced?
9
votes
4answers
247 views

How does one affect a Jew who is not connected at all? [closed]

I have a friend who is halachicly Jewish, but is very far from being "connected". He doesn't care about it at all. He is not a close friend at all, just someone that I know. He lives far away. Is ...
8
votes
3answers
257 views

How to inspire tears in davening?

Rebbe Nachman said that it is especially powerful to allow tears to flow during the Amidah. How does one come to tears? What thoughts should one have while davening to allow tears to flow in order to ...
3
votes
1answer
143 views

What do sukkahmobiles use for schach, and how do they keep it fastened?

What do sukkahmobiles use for schach, and how do they keep it fastened? Also, are they able to drive the sukkahmobile without the schach falling off? (If you allow cable-ties you're all set, but if ...
13
votes
1answer
1k views

How do I do the car-door-sukkah trick?

I know in theory, people on the road don't need to eat in a sukkah; at the same time, you're not supposed to go put yourself in that situation on purpose. ("Let's go take a chol hamoed trip -- oops ...
6
votes
1answer
111 views

How to collect Bikurim practically?

So we know that Bikurim was collected by tying a reed to the first fruit of a particular field when it would be found budding. We also know that Chazal say to give one 60th of one's produce as ...
10
votes
3answers
1k views

How does an engaged person find a chosson/kallah (pre-marriage) class teacher?

How does an engaged person find a chosson/kallah (pre-marriage) class teacher? Preferably a good one? Is it "just ask around"? Ask a rabbi? Is there any good way to compare different people, or is ...
4
votes
4answers
3k views

What's the best way to make ashes (for weddings and/or pre-Tisha B'Av)?

There are times that something calls for ashes, e.g.: The meal right before Tisha B'Av, you're supposed to eat a hard-boiled egg dipped in ashes. A groom puts ashes on his forehead shortly before ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

What do I need to make a Jewish wedding?

What do I need to make a Jewish wedding?
11
votes
11answers
842 views

How do you improve your Kavvanah [concentration]? [duplicate]

Building on my blog post here, I ask: How do you improve your concentration when davening?
17
votes
9answers
4k views

Cleaning Tzitzis

What have you found to be the best way to wash tzitzis (i.e. easiest, least likely to invalidate, and most clean)?
12
votes
3answers
308 views

Finding the quiet section of the synagogue

When you enter an unfamiliar synagogue, how do you find a seat in a section that's likely to have the least talking?
9
votes
7answers
385 views

How do you pick a Hagada to use at the Seder?

There are hundreds or thousands of editions of the Hagada available. How do you choose which one is best to use at the Seder?
12
votes
1answer
658 views

How to identify Yashan

I would like to serve food to a friend who observes the restrictions against eating Chadash grain products, but I don't have access to a guide on identifying Yashan. However, I have heard, that ...
22
votes
12answers
11k views

Talmud Study, Where to start [closed]

I would like to start to study Talmud, BUT do not know how, where to start. My Jewish training is basically non-existent. I learned how to read the Hebrew words in the Siddur, Machzor, and Chumash - - ...
36
votes
25answers
1k views

Experience-based advice for focusing and slowing down prayers?

I tend to daven (pray) without sufficient focus and very quickly. In particular, I find that most of the time that I'm praying, my mind is on things other than the words that I'm saying. And, not that ...
6
votes
3answers
5k views

Which hechsheirim are reliable?

There are so many hechsheirim (Kosher certifications) out there. How is an individual supposed to find out which hechsheirim to rely on, and which not to?
10
votes
4answers
154 views

Torah studies at Synagogue [closed]

How do we make studying Torah by adults a central part of our synagogue?
12
votes
2answers
841 views

What do I do when asked to “open the Aron” or “take out the Torah”?

If I'm in synagogue and someone asks me if I can "open the Aron" or "take out the Sefer Torah," what will I be expected to do, and when?
16
votes
4answers
3k views

How to advise your barber

Men: What is a succinct, clear, Halachically complete line to tell a barber what not to do when cutting your hair?
17
votes
10answers
6k views

Method for practicing Torah reading

What is your method for practicing reading a Torah portion and thus memorizing the associated vowelizations and intonations? I'm looking for ideas for maximizing your effectiveness at performing a ...
12
votes
4answers
969 views

December greeting responses [closed]

How do you respond when greeted, during the Winter "holiday season" by a non-Jewish acquaintance with each of the following? Happy Chanuka (in proximity to Chanuka) Happy Chanuka (not in proximity to ...
13
votes
6answers
3k views

What do I need to know in order to properly have an aliya?

What things should I know in advance in case I get called up for an aliya during a Torah-reading service?
11
votes
6answers
3k views

What's the best way to make wick-and-oil work for Chanukah?

I've tried lots of fancy fluffy cotton wicks that just burn out. Some people have those little metal holder-thingies to keep the wick in place; some use bobby pins as holder thingies. If your oil ...
25
votes
8answers
3k views

How do you maximize your aravot's period of freshness?

Every Sukkot any aravot that I start the holiday with tend to get dried up by the end of the holiday, if not to the point of being unfit for service, at least enough to be ugly. What do you do to ...
8
votes
2answers
211 views

How do you get oil residue off of a menora?

When you light olive oil in a metal menora, some of the oil invariably finds its way into the cracks between parts of the menora. How do you remove this residue?
7
votes
4answers
314 views

How do you vet a day school?

How do you go about investigating whether a particular day school is best for your kids? I am most interested in the behavior and attitude of the students and the professionalism of the teachers and ...
12
votes
10answers
508 views

How do you deal with huge numbers of calls from tzedaka organizations?

We get at least 20 calls per day that show up on the caller ID without a name and with either no phone number or a number with a New York metro area code. We usually don't bother answering such calls ...
15
votes
3answers
935 views

What's a good technique for a not-so-strong person to do [Ashkenazi] Hagbaha?

I've seen many people shy away when asked to do Hagbaha (‏הגבהה‏), thinking themselves too weak. I know for a fact that it doesn't take that much strength to do it correctly, so I'd love to ...

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