Questions tagged [mesorah-tradition]

The different traditions passed down through the generations.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
-2
votes
0answers
23 views

Is Ktav Ashuri vs Ivri a theological conundrum? [closed]

I listened to a fantastic shiur regarding the 3 way machlokes in sanhedrin regarding what script the Torah was originally given in. Either it was always Ashuri, it was originally ashuri switched to ...
4
votes
1answer
69 views

What is the significance of a yahrtzeit meal?

Some people are particular in having a yahrtzeit meal on the anniversary of someone's passing. Does this custom have any documented source, significance, or reason?
0
votes
2answers
108 views

Why is gefiltefish eaten at passover?

This is something I've been wondering for a while, so hopefully I can get a good answer. Why do we eat gefiltefish during passover, and where did this tradition come from? Is there a story, similar ...
3
votes
4answers
318 views

Transition from “Temple Judaism” to “Rabbinic Judaism”

In reference to this comment on the Worldbuilding.SE question, "What educational resources could help someone who knows they will time travel to the future?": There is little resemblance between ...
4
votes
2answers
528 views

What is the source that says David wrote Psalms / Tehillim while hiding from Saul

I'm trying to find the source of the common tradition that David wrote at least part of Tehillim while on the run from Shaul, but I can't find any sources. Does anyone here know of a source for this ...
2
votes
2answers
101 views

What was actually handed down in the Oral Law?

When Judaism claims that the Oral law was transferred from Mount Sinai to today, what exactly was transferred over? Meaning, what specific body of information was transferred as opposed to later ...
1
vote
2answers
146 views

Penalty for not washing hands?

(I originally asked this in Christianity.SE, but was redirected since the question deals with Jewish laws. Please forgive my obvious ignorances of Jewish society.) In the Christian Bible, Matthew 15:...
2
votes
1answer
65 views

Gemara seems to ignore the Masoret

The Gemara Yoma quoted below enumerates five words in verses of the Pentateuque for which it's not clear, according to Issi Ben Yehuda if they are attached to the previous words or to the next words. ...
1
vote
2answers
134 views

History of Kabbalah

Has anyone attempted to write a historical sketch of the history of the shalsheles HaKabbalah (which, in this instance, I use to refer to Toras HaSod)? In other words, what was megale to Moshe Rabbenu,...
3
votes
0answers
55 views

Inconsistent sifrei Torah for the required number of aliyos

Different groups (Ashkenazim, Sefaradim, Teimonim) have different traditions for spellings of different words in the Torah. Practically, while each group writes according to their own mesorah, we ...
0
votes
1answer
114 views

Why no Torah or wisdom or knowledge is mentioned presented by G-d to Adam?

IIRC, the passing of the Tora/wisdom/divine knowledge in our tradition didn't start with Moses or even Abraham. Allegedly, the 19 generations of Tzadikim from Adam to Abraham studied/dealt with it ...
2
votes
1answer
56 views

The tradition of a Gezeira Shava

A number of questions and answers (here is one, for example) have pointed out that expounding text by means of a gezeriah shava requires a mesorah, a teaching from one's teacher, and that different ...
6
votes
0answers
84 views

Why was Shlomo haMelekh not a part of the Oral Torah’s transmission?

Reading the Rambam's introduction to his Mishne Torah, I am struck by the fact that he has Achiya haShiloni succeed David in the transmission of the Oral Torah, and not David's son Shlomo. I'm curious ...
3
votes
2answers
59 views

Large Samech in Bemidbar 13:30

A mesorah records that the samekh in Bemidbar 13:30 ויהס כלב is large (see marginal note in Artscroll and elsewhere). Yet none of the printed editions which I have consulted actually conform to this ...
2
votes
0answers
37 views

Source of small/large letters in the torah

Although there are many small and large letters throughout tanach, both the aleppo codex and the Leningrad codex have extremely few of them. Were they later introduced? The different miforshim, ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

When the Torah was almost lost and one (or several) Rabbis saved it?

I heard several times from numerous sources, that there were times in history (during the 1st and the 2nd Temples) when the Torah (incl. Oral) was almost completely lost and just one Rabbi (or a ...
0
votes
0answers
60 views

Customs/Habits around having a second child?

Besides the brit milah ceremony, pidyon haben/habat (redemption of the firstborn) or kidush peter rechem (sanctification of the womb's opening) or seder kidushat chaye hamishpacha, (ceremony of ...
1
vote
0answers
67 views

“Vaishakehu” Extra Points over entire word? or some letters?

Shalom! The famous Passuk on which Esav and Jaacov ran, hug, kiss and cry. The Word VAISHAKEHU has points-dots over every leter. Siftei Chakhamim seems to have VAISHAKEHU וישקהו with 5 nekudot, ...
1
vote
0answers
38 views

Why break Hallel in the middle of a parsha?

On Pesach night, following Beis Hillel we break up Hallel between חלמיש למעינו מים and לא לנו. This is in the middle of a parsha, according to the Keter (navigate to Psalms --> From 114_2 to 118_1) ...
1
vote
0answers
47 views

Why did the Savoraim only emend certain parts of the Talmud?

I remember learning that Savoraim added certain parts to the Talmud- ex: the beginning of Kiddushin (2a-3a) & parts of Bava Metzia. (feel free to add additional examples) Any idea why they ...
8
votes
0answers
150 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 ...
2
votes
0answers
45 views

Strange letters according to Sefer haTaggin

My chevrusoh mentioned last week that there is a sefer entitled Sefer haTaggin which discusses all of the strange letters found in Tana"ch. Is there a collection of these letters and their forms (...
6
votes
4answers
330 views

Why is the location of Mount Sinai not traditionally known?

Why don’t we know the exact location of Mount Sinai, after all if millions of people were there, surely they would have handed down the tradition of the location just like Kivrey Avos or Har Hamoriyah ...
1
vote
1answer
32 views

Was there a parasha beginning at Exodus 18:21?

Rashi to Exodus 18:1 says that Yisro was also called Yeser because he added (yasar) a parasha in the Torah: "And you see…" [from 18:21]. We don't have a parasha break before verse 21. Did ...
4
votes
0answers
70 views

Does Jewish law have a separate status for someone whose father is a Jew rather than simply grouping them with non-Jews? [duplicate]

Traditional standards on Judaism are clear about the topic. One is only legally Jewish if they have a matrilineal connection to the community. That being said, I've heard a few people throw around ...
6
votes
0answers
116 views

Can we use archaeology to determine halacha or mesorah?

Can archaeology be used to determine the proper halacha or mesorah in certain cases? For instance, what if we found a Sefer Torah from the times of Moshe Rabbeinu and it differed from our mesorah. ...
2
votes
0answers
99 views

Is there a surviving Jewish translation of the entire Masoretic Text in Greek?

Please don't say "the Septuagint" because I know that this has fallen out of favor among most modern Jews (the only exception being Beta Israel, which I believe still uses it - correct me if I am ...
2
votes
3answers
178 views

Meaning of “נראים דבריהם מדברינו” - accepting scientific theories over Jewish tradition?

Questions about the reconciliation of the Torah and the science are very frequent and popular, but they are nothing new. The sages were asked similar questions by the philosophers of Ancient Greece ...
3
votes
0answers
47 views

How early were maps used to understand Tanach?

In many editions of Tanach I’ve seen there are often maps of the middle eastern area in attempt to explain the places where certain events occurred. (For example, the journeys of יעקב אבינו or stuff ...
1
vote
0answers
78 views

Looking for an interpretation of Shir Hashirim that follows the parsha breaks

Coming off of some tangential discussion in the comments here, I'm looking for an interpretation of Shir Hashirim that follows the parsha breaks. It doesn't have to explicitly address every one, but ...
2
votes
1answer
137 views

Do any of the differences between the various printings of Shas (Mishnah and Gemara) have halachic significance?

I recently watched a video by Rabbi David bar Hayim about the "18 minute matzah fallacy." While I don't think I know nearly enough to weigh into this debate in particular, he brings an odd proof. He ...
4
votes
0answers
40 views

At what point does Moshe relay G-d's commandments to B'nai Yisra'el?

I'm asking this as a general question. We do see in a few places that G-d speaks to Moshe and then, the Torah says something like, "Moshe told this to B'nai Yisra'el". But, in numerous other places (...
4
votes
1answer
61 views

Does anyone say the “extra” pesukim in Yehoshua about the cities from Reuven belong there?

Some versions of Yehoshua, including Sefaria, print two extra pesukim (identical to the ones in Divrei Hayamim) about the cities that Shevet Reuven gave to the Leviyim. The Radak, quoted by the ...
3
votes
2answers
104 views

Who compared “the ox that gores the cow” to “I am Hashem Your G-d”?

I once read a machshava--possibly from chasidus--to the effect that: "'The ox that gores the cow' is as much charged with G-dliness as 'I am H' your G-d.'" I was quite moved by this. What is its ...
3
votes
0answers
111 views

Must one follow Minhagim he reads in books?

If an Ashkenazi reads of a minhag, for example in Mishna Brura which it says Ashkenazim follow (the Rema), must he follow it? Or is it only what a father teaches his children?
3
votes
0answers
86 views

At what point does a Jew going against tradition establish a legitimate extension to that tradition?

This question is in reference to tzitzit knots but it can really apply to any Jewish tradition which comes in "flavors" so to speak. Tzitzit are an interesting article because they tend to come in a ...
4
votes
1answer
178 views

How was brit milah practiced during the First Century?

The Christian New Testament records that both John the Baptist and Jesus were circumcised on the eighth day in accordance with Jewish Law. Luke 1:57-60 English Standard Version (ESV) Now the time ...
5
votes
1answer
52 views

It is same species if offspring can have offspring (source)

I heard that if we do not have a messora on a certain bird but we do have one on a similar species then we can check by checking if their offspring can have offspring What is this idea based on? I ...
4
votes
1answer
125 views

Why did Rabbi Akiva write down Torah She Baal Peh?

In the Rambam's introduction he writes: וחיברו חכמי משנה חיבורין אחרים, לפרש דברי התורה: רבי הושעיה תלמידו של רבנו הקדוש, חיבר ביאור ספר בראשית. ורבי ישמעאל פירש מאלה שמות עד סוף התורה, והוא ...
3
votes
0answers
86 views

Does Halakhah require one to believe in Gilu'i Eliyahu, Gilu'i Maggid, and the like?

I have heard many stories from many independent sources about Rabbis receiving teachings via individual revelation in the form of Gilu'i Eliyahu (i.e. "the appearance of Eliyahu") or Gil'ui Maggid (e....
4
votes
1answer
76 views

Succession of Leadership in the Rambam's Introduction to the Mishnah

In the Introduction to the Mishnah, the Rambam lists the leadership through the years from Moshe to Rav Ashi. Is there a source for each link in this chain, showing that successive leaders were ...
3
votes
2answers
141 views

Community without tzitzith

Are/were there any halachic Jewish communities that do/did not have a daily custom of wearing a garment obligated in tzitzith (e.g. tallith katan/tallith gadol)?
1
vote
0answers
67 views

Practical suggestions for choosing between different nuschaot in the Torah

Unfortunately, it's not hard to find places in the Torah, and even more so in Nach, where we have a doubt about either the trop or the nekudot. (Or, more rarely, letters, but those are generally the ...
5
votes
0answers
115 views

How to deal with uncertainties in the Torah that lead to a change in meaning?

In Vayikra 14:19, there are different versions of the trop, and unlike most of them, this difference causes a change in the meaning of the words: וְכִפֶּ֕ר עַל־הַמִּטַּהֵ֖ר מִטֻּמְאָת֑וֹ (...
0
votes
1answer
282 views

Changes in Halacha [closed]

Is Halacha (specifically Halacha, not minhag) capable of changing, or is it an immutable constant? In other words, is Halacha an inflexible set of rules that never bend to societal needs, scientific ...
2
votes
1answer
126 views

Do Jews accept The Book of the Wars of the Lord (סֵפֶר מִלְחֲמֹת יהוה) as an authentic part of Tanach

Do Jews accept The Book of the Wars of the Lord (סֵפֶר מִלְחֲמֹת יהוה) as an authentic part of Tanach? "From there they set out and camped on the other side of the Arnon, which is in the desert and ...
2
votes
0answers
38 views

Why were different pronunciations allowed in the first place? [duplicate]

The following question might be a duplicate of How could different pronunciations arise when we are obligated to pronounce the Shema precisely? Why did our Rabbonim however many hundreds of years ...
1
vote
0answers
241 views

Torah transmission according to the Rambam

the Rambam in the introduction to Mishne Torah counts 40 generations from Moshe Rabeinu to Rav Ashi (compiler of the talmud) in the transmission of the oral law and lists the names of these sages. ...
1
vote
2answers
174 views

Is there any particular standard recension/variation of the masoretic tradition that scribes use for torah scrolls in shul?

I don't know if i'm entirely correct in this, but I understand that there have in the past been variations in malai and chaser, throughout both the ashkenazi and sephardi world.. And then there was ...
6
votes
1answer
115 views

Are the conventional chapter divisions of any entire books of Tanach originally from Jewish tradition?

In general, the conventional division of the books of Tanach into chapters is not based on Jewish tradition but on Christian invention. However, there are some books of Tanach in which various ...