Questions tagged [rabbis]

Questions about the lives and personalities of Jewish religious authorities.

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4
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1answer
136 views

Seeking text of a notice published by the Malbim

Someone told the following story today (or something like the following story. I may be remembering it incorrectly to some extent). He said he had gotten it from a book called Em Habanim S'mecha, ...
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8answers
13k views

Why did nobody succeed the Lubavitcher Rebbe?

The late Lubavitcher Rebbe Menachem Mendel Schneerson zt"l had no successor as the rebbe of Chabad-Lubavitch. Why is this? Was it simply because he had no children? If so, why was nobody else ...
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2answers
62 views

Does the Midrash show any examples of adjectives attached to Rabbi when addressing a Rabbi?

Are there any historic examples, such as in the Midrash, that show someone addressing a Rabbi with an adjective such as רַבִּי הַטּוֹב?
2
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0answers
55 views

13 ways in which the Torah is trampled

I've found a reference in a book to a medieval Italian document which refers to "the 13 ways in which the Torah is trampled and profaned". Can anyone tell me more about these 13 ways?
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0answers
82 views

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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2answers
264 views

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 ...
4
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1answer
114 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 ...
7
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1answer
359 views

Which rabbi said “if a horse had the mind of Kant …”?

I recall hearing in yeshiva that one great rabbi -- I think one of the baalei mussar? once said: If a horse had the mind of Kant, it would author volume after volume of great philosphical works -- ...
2
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3answers
393 views

What does שליט"א stand for?

I thought that שליט"א came from the Aramaic word שליט (Ruler). But a Rabbi I told this to, pointed out that שליט"א is always written as with " , in the Middle so each the letters must ...
7
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0answers
91 views

Picture of the Chacham Tzvi

In the book "Hachassidut" by Rabbi Ahron Marcus there's a drawing of the Chacham Tzvi: This seems to be based on this painting or this one. In all three, he's drawn pointing at his bookmark,...
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1answer
100 views

Shlomo Yosef Zevin a Rav at 9 years old

Rabbi Shlomo Yosef Zevin, according to here was given smicha by the Aruch HaShulchan. Assuming that the Aruch HaShulchan ordained Rabbi Zevin at the very end of his life, Rabbi Zevin would have been ...
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0answers
28 views

R' Meir, posek of “the Beardlings” regiment

In "A Treasury of Jewish Folklore" there's an English translation of a story that seems to be a fictional account of a former soldier who was part of Berek Yoselevitz's Jewish regiment in ...
3
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3answers
393 views

Was the Aruch Hashulchan Sephardic?

No, wait. Before you shake your head in disgust and think, "What are you thinking? Of course he's Ashkenaz!"consider what he writes in סימן מז סעיף יב: ברכה ראשונה היא: "אשר קדשנו במצותיו, וצונו על ...
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0answers
48 views

Why did latter Rabbis study Torah in solitude?

From the Talmudic discourse, it appears that there's a special merit of learning Torah in Beis Midrash especially in Chavrutah or with students. However, I recognize an emerging pattern of the latter ...
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0answers
98 views

Nittel Nacht in Israel

Do Gedolim in Israel not learn on Nittel Nacht? The Nitei Gavriel (3:1) writes בארץ ישראל יש אומרים שאין לחוש לניטל אכן רוב הגדולים חשו לזה גם בא"י -- Some say it doesn't apply in Israel, but ...
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1answer
147 views

Where do Israeli nationalist Orthodox movements derive their Halacha?

This isn't a question regarding Israeli politics or issues like that. This question is purely about where these groups (Groups which followed Meir Kahane or similar voices) developed or derived their ...
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0answers
87 views

What does it mean “to be proficient in Shas and Poskim” as said about Talmidi Chachamim? [closed]

One constantly reads in biographies about Gedolim or at a friend's siyum HaShas that mention how the talmid chacham or guy is a bucky and a maeivin in Shas and poskim. See example in this Wikipedia ...
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9answers
2k views

Did any Achronim comment on the American Revolutionary or Civil Wars?

I've heard that for instance, in the 1800s, the American rabbis in the South were pro-slavery, and the American rabbis in the North opposed to it. But what were the views towards America of the more-...
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2answers
251 views

Unique signature of the Chida

The Chida has a very unique signature. What is the significance of this signature (if any)? Is it in any way related to the seven kabbalistic seals? Are there other similarly unusual signatures by ...
3
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2answers
294 views

Yose b. Yoezer and Yose b. Yohanan received from them. Who does “them” refer to?

Avot 1:2-4: שִׁמְעוֹן הַצַּדִּיק הָיָה מִשְּׁיָרֵי כְנֶסֶת הַגְּדוֹלָה....‏ אַנְטִיגְנוֹס אִישׁ סוֹכוֹ קִבֵּל מִשִּׁמְעוֹן הַצַּדִּיק...‏ יוֹסֵי בֶן יוֹעֶזֶר אִישׁ צְרֵדָה וְיוֹסֵי בֶן יוֹחָנָן אִישׁ ...
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1answer
73 views

R' Yohanan's behavior to make women bear kids in his resemblance

To support my previous question ("biblical-genetics-understanding-childs-resemblance-to-his-parents" here's a Talmudic passage (Berakhot.20a): רַבִּי יוֹחָנָן הֲוָה רְגִיל דַּהֲוָה קָא ...
2
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1answer
149 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 ...
6
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1answer
225 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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2answers
99 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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6answers
400 views

R' Yehoshua Ben Levi — A Tanna or an Amorah?

I had always assumed that R' Yehoshua Ben Levi was an Amorah. However, we know he is quoted in the mishnah in Avos (Perek 6 Mishnah 2. Which is really a braisa, not a mishnah, but still a Tannaic ...
7
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2answers
273 views

Why do Rabbis curse in the Gemara?

I've always believed cursing people is forbidden in Judaism, but I recently read the following on the Gemara: Berakhot 13b והא רבי יהושע בן לוי לייט אמאן דגני אפרקיד For lo, R. Joshua b. Levi cursed ...
4
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1answer
230 views

Following an old Rabbi's Pesak

Let's say you asked your old rabbi a question and he answered you, but now let's say you have lost contact with him. Do you still have to follow this pesak or can you change?
6
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1answer
446 views

Gedole HaDor: who and how

1)Who do we know to refer to as a "Gadol?" 2)How do we determine who is a "Gadol?" For example, how did we determine that Rav Elyashiv is a Gadol? A Gadol HaDor is known as one of the most ...
5
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2answers
328 views

How do I know if a midrash is accepted?

I have found many different types of midrashic works. Some are, as far as I can tell, accepted as being authoritative. Meaning they were written (compiled?) by the sages in roughly the Talmudic era. ...
1
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0answers
76 views

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: &...
1
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2answers
114 views

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 ...
3
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2answers
117 views

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.
2
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1answer
117 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 ...
10
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5answers
2k views

Why were some of the works of Rabbi Steinsaltz banned?

Apparently some of the works of Rabbi Steinsaltz were banned. What are the specific examples that prompted the ban? Is there a list of all of his works that have been banned, as I am interested in ...
1
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1answer
52 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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1answer
72 views

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&...
0
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1answer
97 views

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 ...
1
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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 ...
2
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1answer
120 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 ...
1
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1answer
97 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 ...
10
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4answers
474 views

Examples of Rabbis who had strong disagreements and were amicable

I'm looking for examples of Rabbis who had a serious disagreement and were nevertheless very kind and thoughtful towards each other. The main reason I'm asking for examples is to illustrate what a ...
1
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2answers
311 views

Proving you are a kohen

When you ask a rabbi to perform a life-cycle ceremony, he will frequently ask for proof that you are Jewish (birth certificates, ketubot, certificates from other rabbis, etc.) But do you ever have to ...
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1answer
84 views
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0answers
68 views

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.
3
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1answer
98 views

Audio or video of Rabbi Michel Ber Weismandl zt”l

(related) Rabbi Michel Ber Weismandl zt"l, saved many people during the holocaust, but also was a noted Torah scholar genius. They published some of his work after his death. However, does anyone ...
3
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0answers
52 views

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 ...
6
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1answer
683 views

Is a female Torah scholar accorded the same honors as a male?

Would a woman who is as learned in Torah as a male Rosh Yeshiva or talmud scholar be accorded the same honors such as standing up for them or, in the case of an outstanding scholar reciting the ...
17
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6answers
1k views

What's the deal with female Rabbis?

1) Is there a concrete halachic (Biblical?Rabbinic?) basis for women not being permitted to become Rabbis? 2) After 2000+ years, what changed so the JTS's Commission in 1979 decided that they can? ...
3
votes
2answers
164 views

People with defects and their role in serving

Parashat Emor teaches (Vayikra/Leviticus 21:17) something about a kohen with a 'מום' (blemish, defect, deformity, disability, handicap) isn't allowed to serve in the Holy Temple. But without the ...
2
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1answer
76 views

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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