Questions tagged [rabbis]

Questions about the lives and personalities of Jewish religious authorities.

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2answers
84 views

Who is “your teacher”?

There is an injunction that you may not give a halakhic opinion in the presence of "your teacher". The Talmud says: The sons of Aaron died only because they issued a halakhic ruling before ...
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1answer
114 views

Gezerah D'Rabbah in the Beit Hamikdash?

Rabbah publicized a Gezerah (command / decree) that Lulav and Shofar should not be used on Shabbat because of a fear someone may violate the Melacha of Hotzaah. I heard that there was another case ...
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Did Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi learn the Angel of Death's personal name?

I recently heard that when Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi was in Paradise he learned the personal name of the Angel of Death/Satan. Can anyone provide a source for this claim? In Ketubot 77b it is written: &...
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Did Ezra abrogate the Mosaic Law in Num. xviii. 21,(according to Yeb. 86b, Ḥul. 131b)?

According to http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/636-abrogation-of-laws The ancient rabbis claimed authority, not only to make new provisions and to establish institutions as a "hedge&...
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Rabbinical Hebrew English Dictionary

Are there any existing dictionaries that focus on Rabbinical Hebrew. The way Geonim, Rishonim, Achrei Achronim Wrote their Commentaries, Tshuvas, etc... I'm trying to learn more but sometimes having ...
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1answer
74 views

What does Chaplaincy mean [closed]

I found that abroad (out of Israel) there is an intense usage of the word Chaplaincy. Does it mean Rabbanut in Hebrew? Are there Rabbis that call themselves Chaplaincy? Does this word come from ...
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1answer
118 views

How Seforim know hidden knowledge?

One often encounters statements quoted from Rabbinical personalities or written in Seforim that they should have no apparent way of knowing. Thousands of examples could likely be given if one were to ...
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93 views

Why does Rabbi Akiva and his rebbi react to situations differently?

The gemara in Taanis 21a brings a story about Nachum Ish Gamzu that explains why he was called "Ish Gamzu", because he would always say "Gam Zu L'tovah" (This too is for the best). It is also known ...
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Help trying to find the lifespan of an ancient rabbi

Zohar (Vayikra 10a) quotes a sefer by R. Hamnunab [Hanunah] Sabah, a sage of Second Beit HaMikdash times. Thing is, I can't pin-point the lifespan. Can someone help me with this? Toda.
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Rabbi Eleazar and Rabbi Shimeon in Mishna

In Mishna, it's current to find that "Rabbi Eleazar and Rabbi Shimeon say", e.g. in Rosh Hashana, Yoma, Shkalim, etc. Sometimes it's Eliezer instead of Eleazar, but it's not probably because they were ...
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1answer
95 views

Diets promoted by different Rabbis throughout history

I was curious if there was any information about the sages or other known historical Rabbis who promoted diets for physical/spiritual health. Obviously, Kosher is Kosher but did anyone ever suggest ...
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Lashon Hara in the Gemara

The Gemara sometimes relates anecdotes of Amoraim and presents them in a negative light by including details which would seemingly classify as Lashon Hara in any other context. For instance, "רַב ...
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1answer
403 views

Pri Chadash and Coffee

I have read that the Pri Chadash writes somewhere that “one cannot attain presence of mind without the aid of coffee.”? Does anyone know where this was written?
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Rabbi who killed children?

I recall of a story where a Rabbi during the time of the Tosafists who personally killed many Jewish children in order to save them being raised in the Christian faith. Anyone know source? ...
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Are there sources which cite art as being an extension of spiritual practice in Jewish tradition?

I understand this question may be interpreted as being slightly generalized but I'm asking for sources which cite the religious/spiritual nature of art in Jewish practice. Obviously, statues of ...
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What's the point of learning [duplicate]

What's the point of learning Torah? Torah Shbksav & Shbalpeh. What's the point of any Sefer other than the classics? (Tanach, mishnayos, Shas, Rambam, Shulchan Aruch, Medresh)? Is it for our ...
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What does “mazik the rabim” mean?

The Va’ad HaRabbonim of Greater Cleveland has issued a statement about the COVID-19 virus that contains the following paragraph: Additionally, anyone who was exposed to someone who tested positive ...
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1answer
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Are the claims of this rabbi regarding the Messiah considered credible by Jews [closed]

So, I just saw a news article purporting that Rabbi Yaakov Zissholtz, labelled by the article as Israel's "top rabbi", claims to know members of the Thirty Six Tzaddikim as well as the Messiah, and ...
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What blessing would one have said on seeing Einstein for example?

The Oruch Hashulchan O Ch 224, 6 says הרואה חכם מחכמי ישראל שגדול בתורה מברך: "ברוך אתה ה' אלהינו מלך העולם שחלק מחכמתו ליריאיו, Someone who sees a Jewish Torah sage makes the blessing “ ...
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Sources on revoking or annulling rabbinic semichah [duplicate]

I’m looking for sources discussing whether or not rabbinic semichah can be revoked (and if it can, on what grounds), plus sources - especially responsa - which deal with specific cases. The main one I’...
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In case of Halachic doubt should one ask a Rabbi or assume anything will work? [duplicate]

Following comments on my other question "how-an-open-succah-oriented": Let's imagine one is facing a new Halachic reality he never heard of: he always built Succah on his 5th-floor balcony and then ...
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Empirical evidence of Sages' intellectual superiority

Throughout ages, our Sages engaged in Halachic, scientific and philosophical arguments between themselves and with other nations' philosophers. We hold that the truthfulness of Talmudic discussions ...
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How did Gdoley Israel react to the landing on the Moon?

IMHO, landing on the Moon did/could seriously undermine the bases of the Jewish religious view about the nature of the celestial bodies. How did Gdoley Israel react/deal with the landing on Moon (and ...
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What Rabbis originally supported and opposed Rambam's 13 principles and why?

I heard the when Rambam presented his 13 principles the opinions divided pretty sharply between the Sefardic Rabbis that openly supported it and the Ashkenazi (Rabaney Tzarfat) that opposed it for ...
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139 views

Is one allowed to publicize stories about Rabbis without asking them first?

THe approach of learning Halochos or Middos or behaviors from observing Tzaddikim's behavior alone is very common in our literature and is even rooted in Gemmorah (Brochos 62): תניא אמר רבי עקיבא פעם ...
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50 views

Why let the Sages stay anonymous in arguments?

This bothers me a lot - the idea of using anonymous "Chachamim" in arguments. I don't understand why is it important or useful to hide their names. The Mishnah uses it extensively and makes it very ...
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113 views

List of establishing rabbis for each set of minhagim [closed]

I am a baal teshuva who is becoming orthodox and wondering what customs to hold. Is there a list of important rabbis who set minhagim (ie ashkenazi, sephardi yekki, chabad, notable subgroups, etc) and ...
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Chofetz Chaim's Advice to Son

A Rav mentioned that Chofetz Chaim told his son (a Rav) to appoint leaders of the community to take care of the chesed needs in order to address more global issues - noting that he himself writes ...
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1answer
92 views

How many kids did the Tannaim and Amoraim have?

The Gemmorah (Yevomos 62b) brings a statement by R'Yehoshua: ...דתניא: רבי יהושע אומר נשא אדם אשה בילדותו ישא אשה בזקנותו היו לו בנים בילדותו יהיו לו בנים בזקנותו שנא' (קהלת יא, ו): "בבקר זרע את ...
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Talmudic sages of Davidic descent

Which (individual) sages of Talmud were said to be traced back to King David? IIRC, R. Hillel was one (?). Are there others? Sources are welcome.
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Who are the “Sages of Israel” in Pesochim 94b

In Pesochim 94b, the Gemora brings the Braisa D'Mazolos 1:6 which relates an argument between the "Sages of Israel" and the "Sages of the nations," as follows: תנו רבנן חכמי ישראל אומרים גלגל קבוע ...
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Did Rabbis speculate on the future of Judaism? [closed]

As we all know, Judaism is a flexible, human-driven (human Rabbis I mean), masses-friendly religion. While the basic premises remain intact, the Halachic norms change - things that were widely ...
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1answer
66 views

What is the proper way to address someone with s'micha who doesn't work as a rabbi?

If a person received semicha (rabbinical certification) from a yeshiva upon successful completion of the necessary curriculum, but is a lay person, for instance, a businessman ,rather than a ...
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71 views

Did Rabbis reflect on their cognitive processes?

I was probably too harsh attributing various cognitive biases to Rabbis, so I'd like apologize and to step back. With some background in Cognitive sciences, I'm very interested in understanding the ...
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1answer
191 views

Are there any rishonim buried in England and france

Do we know of any of the burial places of rishonim around France (and England). I know rabbi Yisrael Meir gabbai has found some but are there any tools to source ancient jewish cemeteries e.g. a map.
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141 views

Can Rabbis decide whether non-Jews are getting a piece of the Next World?

I remember asking about the limitations of the Rabbinical rulings, based on "לא בשמים היא" within Judaism. After other questions dealt with deciding whether Gentiles in general or any specific group (...
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Does the Talmud continue to use extra Tanachic sources?

I'm trying to draw an analogy between the written and the oral Torah. After the Mishna was signed, the Sages continued to use extra-Mishnaic sources forever (Toseftah, Midrashim, etc). After the 24 ...
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1answer
141 views

Did Rav Papa issue a halachic ruling in order to benefit financially?

In the Gemara Shab. 140b Rav Papa is recorded saying that one who drinks wine while able to drink beer violates “ba’al tashchit”. Maharsh”a comments that Rav Papa’s disapproval of consuming wine ...
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199 views

What does the Canonization of Tanach mean?

Following "did-the-men-of-the-great-assembly-canonize-tanach" (please read for all the related sources): To recap: before the canonization there were many man-made books, incl. Meggilot, Nevi'im, ...
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1answer
500 views

Gedolim During the Holocaust

During a lecture addressing the Torah perspective on the Holocaust, a Rosh Yeshiva mentioned a letter which Rav Aharon Kotler z"tl wrote telling someone to remain in Europe because the war would blow ...
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Yahrzeit is most auspicious (source)

An ad, IIRC sponsored by Chabad, in a Jewish magazine (Ami) reads: Chazal teach us that the day of a tzadik’s yahrtzeit is a most auspicious day, a יום סגולה ועת רצון, to connect with the tzadik, ...
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The ban on conversion to Judaism in Argentina

In 1927 the rabbi of a Syrian-Jewish congregation in Buenos Aires banned all conversions to Judaism in Argentina forever ("ad kol yemei olam"). The ban is still in effect today. Candidates for ...
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Chabad, Prayer, and Corporeality of Hashem

Statement of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, regarding 'betten' (beseeching) the Rebbe [quoted here]: “It is not possible to ask a question about a [Rebbe being a] go-between, since this is G-d Himself, ...
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When does a person transcend to status “Tzadik sets his bar”?

Background: we had a motivational lecture in our Kollel today, with a Rabbi praising virtues of studying Torah (towards Shavuos). He brought a couple of stories about prominent Rabbis dedicating their ...
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Are there limitations of the principle “Not in Heaven”?

A similar question was closed, but I'm going to elaborate on it: It is universally accepted that after the principle was accepted (B"M 59b) in times of R' Eliezer, the Rabbis have the power to rule ...
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What is the difference between an am ha'aretz vs an apikores? [duplicate]

In Rabbinic philosophy what was the difference between somebody that was an am ha’aretz vs an apikores?
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Why is Rav Soloveitchik's legacy so confusing? [closed]

I find it so peculiar how the Rav's legacy is claimed by so many. Rabbi Meiselman claims that the Rav was practically Haredi, most consider him revisionist. My father who sat in his shiur tells me ...
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170 views

Is one obligated to listen to a Rav? [duplicate]

If I ask my rav for halachic advice, must I follow it or can I ask a different posek? Seperately, if I ask my rav for personal advice, must I listen?
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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 ...

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