Questions tagged [sources-mekorot]

Questions seeking sources for a given practice in general or in specific Jewish communities, alternatively seeking the location of a specific source of a teaching/idea/philosophy based on Torah writings.

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Opinions on when to leave a country

Would like to see some opinions and advice given by our leaders throughout galus (or before), on when it is time to leave a country, and how to decide where to go. What sort of situation or signs ...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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The legend of Rashi's 4 lines

There is a known legend among Talmudists that each Amud has four lines of Rashi before the beginning of the text of the Talmud to hint to a student to review the Amud four times before continuing. I'm ...
TORAHistheikur's user avatar
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The beauty of referencing Torah-sources

Rashi, in several places, says "לא ידעתי" - I don't know. It is said that Rabbi Akiva Eiger made a list of the times Rashi said "לא ידעתי" - I don't know, people were bothered by ...
Shmuel's user avatar
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Urim and Thumim

I am currently researching the topic of Urim and Thumim and have two questions, maybe someone can help me or suggest sources: There are 72 letters on the Ephod (50 for the 12 tribes plus Avraham ...
Vyacheslav Yosef Dobrovych's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
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Asking children Psukim in Tanach

I remember that chazal used to ask chidren what Pasuk the child is currently learning to know answers to certain questions. Does anybody have a source ?
Vyacheslav Yosef Dobrovych's user avatar
5 votes
0 answers
106 views

R' Akiva visiting Syracuse

I have read a claim on various sites, including Wikipedia, that R' Akiva visited the city of Syracuse in current Sicily. However, I have failed to find its source in the Talmud. I have seen the ...
Kazi bácsi's user avatar
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If a woman has an abortion is she considered a mazik and need she compensate the father?

Should someone terminate a woman's pregnancy the monetary value of the fetus need be paid to the father (Shemos 21:22). Ralbag explains (ad loc) that it is awarded to him as he "owns" the ...
Nahum's user avatar
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5 votes
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Have all the Torah we saw, even if we didn't learn it

Someone told me in Yeshiva that in the next life, whatever Torah we saw will be available to us, even if we didn't actually learn it. He was advising to flick through the whole of shas just in case. ...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
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Where does R' Kook refer to secular Zionism as Moshiach ben Yosef?

In this article Dr. Polonsky talks about R' Kook's identification of secular Zionism as Moshiach ben Yosef, but he doesn't quote the source. Can someone point me to where R' Kook discusses this?
Yehuda's user avatar
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1 answer
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The Chida in Amsterdam

Of his many travels as a shaliach derabanan, the Chida (Rabbi Chaim Yosef David Azulai) wrote a small book called "Maagel Tov" (Chida's travelogue). One of the many places he visited, was ...
Shmuel's user avatar
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1 vote
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Are there any sources that disagree with Yitro's advice?

Are there any sources that disagree with Yitro's advice? Any sources that say it was detrimental to separate the community from their rebbe? In a way the Rebbe was handing out dollars very day until ...
Yoseph Feivel's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
129 views

Rav Pinchas Koritzer's explanation on the spiritual acquisition of Eretz Yisroel

Concerning the capture of Kiryas Sefer, the Torah relates that Yehoshua set 5.000 men and made an ambush. The Torah says that, that night, Yehoshua "went that night into the midst of the valley&...
Shmuel's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers
103 views

What's the source for a rabbinic statement that 'when one country expels the Jews, another lets them in'?

I'm very confident that I once saw a statement from a rabbi (probably in the Medieval era, but maybe later) to the effect that "God has ensured that when one country expels its Jewish population, ...
הנער הזה's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
232 views

What is the true origin of this quote so often attributed to the Baal Shem Tov?

What is the true origin of this quote so often attributed to the Baal Shem Tov?: From every human being there rises a light that reaches straight to heaven, and when two souls that are destined to be ...
user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
122 views

Why doesn't Rambam codify the obligation/recommendation to honor one's father-in-law?

Mechilta dR Yishmael and more explicitly Mechilta dRashbi both make the point that from Moshe's honoring his father in law Yisro (Shemos 18:7) one sees that one ought to honor ones father in law as ...
Nahum's user avatar
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3 votes
2 answers
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Improving the world through mitzvot and Torah study

When I was in yeshiva, before I had any real accomplishments in learning of my own, I was taught that as Jews, we don't fix the world by going out and literally improving it with our hands and labour. ...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
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Do the laws of pidyon shvuyim apply as usual during a war or are they secondary to warfare considerations?

Rambam states that there is no Mitzva as great as Pidyon Shvuyim. (משנה תורה, הלכות מתנות עניים ח׳) He sets forth there that its greatness is based on the fact that the prisoner is in constant lack of ...
Yahu's user avatar
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Why Remove Kedusha via Pidyon Haben?

Rav Noach Isaac Oelbaum quotes the Shevet Sofer who explains the reason why the father says the beracha Shehechiyanu for removing his firstborn son's kedusha via Pidyon Haben, which would not seem to ...
NJM's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
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Avraham, the four Kings, and the future redemption

In parshas Lech Lecha (Bereishis 14:1-3), the Torah recounts the war of the four kings: וַיְהִ֗י בִּימֵי֙ אַמְרָפֶ֣ל מֶֽלֶךְ־שִׁנְעָ֔ר אַרְי֖וֹךְ מֶ֣לֶךְ אֶלָּסָ֑ר כְּדׇרְלָעֹ֙מֶר֙ מֶ֣לֶךְ עֵילָ֔ם ...
Shmuel's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
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Source of Story with smell from Gan Eden

I am trying to remember a talmudic Story where the Rabbi is selling parfume from Gan Eden or from a flower from Gan Eden? I think he did it to help his sons in law? What Story is this ?
Vyacheslav Yosef Dobrovych's user avatar
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What is "Hebrew letter form"?

Rabbi Michael L. Munk composed "The Wisdom of the Hebrew in the Hebrew Alphabet". Pg. 44 on Aleph he addresses the 'graphic form' of Aleph. He explains the aleph is a construct of two yuds ...
Re'eh's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
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What is the source for this Ibn Ezra on miracles

A rabbi wrote on Facebook that according to the Ibn Ezra the belief in miracles derogates from the perfection of God. The rabbi explains: Accordingly, we do not rely on supernatural miracles to ...
Jonathan's user avatar
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1 answer
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What is the source for the saying ‘a righteous man is rebuked by his yetzer tov; a wicked man by his yetzer hara’?

Shalom. I heard this saying a while ago, but did not remember the source. I’ve done Google searches and cannot find reference to it. Could someone enlighten me as to where this is from? With blessings....
Tom W's user avatar
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2 votes
2 answers
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The Plague of Darkness and the Light that rectified it

The Maharal of Prague (Gevuros Hashem, 57) famously explains that the ten plagues in Mitzrayim, correspond to the ten utterances of G-d with which the world and the heavens were created. The Shem ...
Shmuel's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
40 views

How did Adam and Chava meet?

וַיְבִאֶהָ אֶל־הָאָדָם׃ and [Hashem] brought her [Chava] to the man [Adam] (Bereshit 2:22) Hashem brought Chava to Adam. I saw in the commentaries that there seems to be a reason to think that "...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
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Moshiach, Arabia and the Eirev Rav

In a comment in this question, Rabbi Yitzchok Soloveitchik is said to have said that ערביא (Arabia) is referring to the Eirev Rav and their role in the End of Days. So, according to this opinion, ...
Shmuel's user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
683 views

Moshiach will be groomed in Arabia

The Maharal of Prague, in his sefer Netzach Yisrael (26:12) writes (quoted by Rabbi Yitzchok Sorotzkin in sefer Keitz HaYamin, Vol. 1, p. 14): ולכך המשיח גדל בבירת ערבא - Moshiach will grow up [be ...
Shmuel's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
65 views

The Ox and The Donkey: Moshiach and Eisav

The Torah tells us in Parshas Vayishlach that Yaakov says: וַֽיְהִי־לִי֙ שׁ֣וֹר וַחֲמ֔וֹר - I have acquired oxen and asses There are some commentaries that connect this very specific posuk to ...
Shmuel's user avatar
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2 votes
0 answers
106 views

What is אנדרלמוסיא

It is quite clear from context that it means a type of heavenly group punishment, like a flood or a plague* where both good and bad die, l'a. It seems mainly connected with the sin of זִּמָּה/זְנוּת i....
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
106 views

Jewish nachas (satisfaction)

What is the source of the phrase "a sach yiddishe nachas" ? Why specify 'jewish' ?
Shababnik's user avatar
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Galus: three or four?

There are different sources (Bereishis Rabbah 2:4, Shemos Rabbah 15:6, Ramban; Bereishis 15:14) that say that there were decreed four galuyos - four exiles. There are also explanations that explain ...
Shmuel's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
78 views

Historical references for non-halachic conversion

As of late much ado has been made about in the Torah world about the non-halachic conversion crisis. This is especially controversial in Israel due to halachic problems with gentiles owning land there....
Kirk's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
187 views

Did Ramban ever cite kabbalah books?

Is there any evidence Ramban (Nachmanides) had access to books of kabbalah and did he ever cite them? I believe he is generally seen as Maimonides’ mystical counterpart. Is there any historical record ...
Kirk's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
44 views

What is the source (if any) for using a six-wicked candle for Havdalah?

I have often heard that there is a Minhag to use specifically a six-wicked candle for Havdalah to represent the six workdays of the week. However I have not been able to locate a source for this. The ...
binyamingavriel's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
77 views

Examples of "making a wish", the Torah way

I was recently thinking about the cultural concept of a "genie" who provides wishes (usually 3). There are generally two categories of wish in these stories: Someone tries to find 3 wishes ...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
143 views

Did Esau, Samson, and Saul have ADHD? Have any Rabbis in the past suggested something akin to this?

The following paper Martinez-Badía, J., & Martinez-Raga, J. (2015). Who says this is a modern disorder? The early history of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. World journal of psychiatry, ...
setszu's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
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Forgetfulness and alcohol (and other narcotics)

Apart from discussions that deal exclusively with the halacha of "ad delo yada", are there any halachic or hashkafic discussions surrounding the forgetfulness that comes with alcohol and ...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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3 votes
2 answers
381 views

Are Feiga and Tsiporah the same name

I was told that Rav Moshe Feinstein wrote how the names Feiga and Tsiporah are not the same name; and that neither of them mean "bird". I know Feiga is a Yiddish name which means fig. With ...
Shababnik's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers
212 views

Source for winding retzuos around the finger 3 times

Rambam writes (tefilin 3:12): וְאֹרֶךְ רְצוּעָה שֶׁלַּיָּד - כְּדֵי שֶׁתַּקִּיף אֶת הַזְּרוֹעַ וְיִקְשֹׁר מִמֶּנָּה הַקֶּשֶׁר, וְתִמָּתַח רְצוּעָה אַחַת עַד אֶצְבַּע אֶמְצָעִית, וְיִכְרֹךְ מִמֶּנָּה ...
Nahum's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
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Does "הֵאָסְפוּ" signify unity as the key to redemption?

The verse says וַיִּקְרָא יַעֲקֹב אֶל־בָּנָיו וַיֹּאמֶר הֵאָסְפוּ וְאַגִּידָה לָכֶם אֵת אֲשֶׁר־יִקְרָא אֶתְכֶם בְּאַחֲרִית הַיָּמִים׃, And Jacob called his sons and said, “Come together that I may ...
TheInquisitiveOne's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
154 views

Parshas Vayechi: The impurity of Philistim

The Shivlei Pinchas (Parshas Vayechi, 5774) shares an incredible idea about the spiritual impurity/kelipah of the Philistim (Hebrew here). The Shivlei Pinchas explains, regarding Shimshon HaGibor, ...
Shmuel's user avatar
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6 votes
3 answers
927 views

More sleep vs more learning

I'm looking for the source of an achron, I believe, who says that a Torah Scholar should get a good night's rest; while possibly foregoing some amount of learning at night so that the learning of the ...
Shababnik's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers
145 views

When did the Zohar become near universally accepted

In Jewish history, when did the Zohar become the near universally accepted Sefer it is today? Was it shortly after it was re circulated by Moshe de Leon? Or was it in a later century? What is the ...
Kirk's user avatar
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2 votes
0 answers
94 views

Malchus Yishmael and the connection with clay

I was stuyding the Midrash Rabbah (Bereishis Rabbah 2:4) on the four galuyos and why Malchus Yishmael isn't included. This got me to sefer Daniel 2:31-33. There, we read about a great statue, with a ...
Shmuel's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
103 views

The descent of Yehudah as a preparation for the geulah

In the sefer " ושב ורפא לו" by Rabbi Tikotzinski (Parshas Vayeshev, p. 119) explains that all things that happened to Yehudah, were a preparation from G-d to bring the redemption. He says: ...
Shmuel's user avatar
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2 votes
0 answers
108 views

Ralbag - "the reason for smart people often becoming heretical is because they are not smart enough" - source?

Rav Paltiel quotes the Ralbag to the effect of the title, and adds his own explanation that there are many people who are smart enough to "understand the question, but not the answer". Does ...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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3 votes
2 answers
147 views

Not to slaughter an animal in the presence of another

I remember learning that you should not shecht an animal in a way, that another live animal will see it. Is there a source to this? Related: Are there any requirements in Kashrut about how livestock ...
hazoriz's user avatar
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4 votes
1 answer
191 views

Ben Ish Chai: Rome and the USA

Rav Daniel Glatstein often quotes from the Ben Ish Chai's commentary Ben Yehoyada on Avodah Zarah 10. He says that the Ben Yehoyada describes "רוֹמִי"- Rome - to mean "Western ideas&...
Shmuel's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
79 views

Why is Avraham Avinu referred to as “the pillar of the world”?

In Mishneh Torah (Hilchot Avoda Zara V’Chukat HaGoyim 1:2), Rambam writes as follows: ועל דרך זה היה העולם הולך ומתגלגל עד שנולד עמודו של עולם והוא אברהם אבינו: “The world continued in this way ...
ezra's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
62 views

Source for not asking your spouse to do something for you

I recall hearing an idea once that you shouldn't ask your spouse to do something for you, but I'm not sure where it is from. Does anyone know the source?
Moses Supposes's user avatar

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