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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What is the source for Beis Din's obligation to enforce mitzvos

The Gemarra in Kesubos 86a and Chullin 132b teaches the following: במצות עשה כגון שאומרין לו עשה סוכה ואינו עושה לולב ואינו עושה מכין אותו עד שתצא נפשו With regard to positive mitzvot, for ...
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The 62 Years of Darius/Cyrus, and the 62 Weeks of Daniel

Has ancient or medieval Jewish tradition, spanning from the Talmud to the Shulchan Aruch, ever connected these two passages from the Book of Daniel ? Daniel 5:30-6:1  That very night, Belshazzar, the ...
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Knife Becoming Unusable By Threatening Someone With It

I have heard that if a knife is used (even for pretend) to threaten someone it is treif to use unless Neitza is done to it (being stabbed in the ground 10 times). Does anybody know of a source for ...
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What is a source for this idea in Sefer HaYashar?

The following passage settled with me in an interesting way. Although the statements recorded are themselves quite eye opening, I am unfamiliar with such an idea at large. In that sense was the ...
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Connection between the akeidah and bikkurim

Some of the akeidah selichos, particularly for days 4 and 5 of teshuvah (Artscroll Minhag Lita), contain references to the mitzvah of bikkurim. Are there any other sources that draw this comparison ...
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Birkas Hachodesh when Rosh Chodesh is Shabbat and Sunday

On Shabbat Mevarchim, Birkas Hachodesh, a prayer announcing when the Rosh Chodesh will be, is said after Kriat Hatorah before Mussaf, containing the following line (with some variations depending on ...
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Source for preferring doing melacha which benefits sick person exclusively

I recently heard the following halacha from a talmid Chacham. He said "I remember that this is the halacha, but I do not remember the source". If one has to do a melacha on shabbos for a choleh ...
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887 views

Sources forbidding a gentile from keeping the Sabbath

I have read that there is a halacha that a non-Jew may not observe Shabbat. This seems to stem from the gemara cited here and the Rambam listed here. But the gemara only seems to be saying that a non-...
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The Pach Shemen and the Sotah

I remember hearing during a shiur on Neiros Shabbos and Chanukah...shalom bayis/Shabbos trumping pirsumei nisah/Chanukah, etc. There was one source which said that the pach shemen was actually ...
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Source for Arizal’s teaching

I’m reading a book by Rabbi Shlomo Arush and he says the following: "According to our master, the Arizal, whoever wants to receive the light of Ein Sof in its entirety has to change its own nature ...
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Weird Weather Before Mashiach

With Harvey and Irma and the Mexican earthquakes and the recent solar eclipse, it’s often been quoted recently that there will be weird weather before Mashiach comes. This is nothing new for me - I’ve ...
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Reason for Ein Onshim Min HaDin

There's a concept that אין עונשים מן הדין that appears a bunch of times throughout Shas (Makkos 5b for example). It basically means we don't learn out punishments the same way we learn out obligations....
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Where is the source of this Midrash/Agadita in the Ein Yaakov

I saw in the הקדמת הכותב of the Ein Yaakov the following midrash/agadita cited: בן זומה אומר מצינו פסוק כולל יותר והוא שמע ישראל וגו׳ בן ננס אומר מצינו פסוק כולל יותר והוא ואהבת לרעך כמוך ...
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Vilna Gaon - Mitzvah Goreres Mitzvah

I once heard (I do not recall from who or where) that The Vilna Gaon once remarked that the way to determine if one's actions were in fact a good deed, one must look at the after effects. The Gr"a is ...
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Zilberman seforim

Does anybody know of seforim written by members of the Zilberman community in Yerushalayim? I'm looking primarily for halachic works about implementing the Vilna Gaon's shitahs today, but I'd be ...
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Reading Mishnah Torah on Hoshana Rabba

There is a minhag that many have to read in shul from a Sefer Torah the entire Chumash of Davarim on the night of Hoshanah Rabbah. What is the first makor (source) for this minhag and what is the ...
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Shavuah Tov or A Gutte Vuch on Motzai Shabbos

What is the earliest reference or source for wishing Shavuah Tov or A Gutte Vuch on Motzai Shabbos?
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Convert without accepting mitzvos?

Conversion is always a hot topic, especially here in Israel. Many times conversions take place where the Ger (convert) didn't have the intention to be m'kabel (accept) the mitzvos. People scream and ...
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Location for medrash cited by the Chizkuni

The Chizkuni in Parshas Achrei Mos 16:22 writes that the ish iti (the person who would take the goat to har azazel) would not live through the year. He cites from a medrash that the person knew he was ...
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Are there any responsa that encourage or require maintaining health insurance?

Are there any responsa in the literature that either encourage or require people to maintain health insurance, perhaps as a fulfillment of the obligation to guard one's health, or in line with any ...
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Different endings of Yishtabach

I have heard at least four nuschaos (liturgies) for the very end of Yishtabach between habocheir b'shirei zimrah (who chooses musical songs of praise) and chai/chei* haolamim (life/life-giver of the ...
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The opinion that microwaves don't need to be kashered

So I remember hearing this opinion that followed like this: "Microwaves do not need to be kashered because the means of cooking in a microwave are different than those spoken about in the Gemara." ...
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Choreography of Kaddish

I have seen a number of different customs of when people bow or sway or bob or whatnot during Kaddish. Some of the people I have witnessed have been very knowledgeable, and I assume they weren't just ...
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Jacob's Dual Names and Wives

The third Patriarch's birth name was Jacob. He is given another name, Israel, in Genesis 32. Jacob had two primary wives; Leah and Rachel. I have heard the idea that the Rachel was the betrothed ...
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Source for medrash that Klal Yisroel counted the omer when they came out of Mitzraim

The sefer Tur Bareket (OC 489, also brought here) quotes a medrash that Moshe Rabbeinu told Klal Yisroel to count 50 days towards matan torah. Do any of our readers know the exact source in the ...
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Yishmael’s burial site

Are there any Torah sources that indicate where Yishmael (ben Avraham) is buried? I have not found anything that mentions his place of burial
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Source for ויראת מאלקיך because of loss of money

HaKesav VeHaKabbalah (Deuteronomy 10:12) writes: והנה מצאנו בחמשה מקומות שדברה תורה ממצות שבין אדם לחברו שסיימה בהם ויראת מאלהיך, כמו אל תקלל חרש ויראת מאלהיך, מפני שיבה תקום ויראת מאלהיך, ולא תונו ...
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Is it obligatory / recommended / permitted / discouraged / forbidden to tie a red thread to a child's crib?

The comments to this question discuss tying to a red thread to a child's crib. Garvey80 claims that it is a minhag yisrael to do so, and is thus obligatory. User6591 claims that it may be forbidden, ...
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Custom of two people not clothing someone together

Probably a common occurrence is when putting clothes on a baby, both parents will try to do it together to make it easier (one puts on the shirt, one puts on the pants, etc.). Someone recently told me ...
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Must seforim be printed with margins?

I have heard that there is a halacha that seforim must be printed with margins, so that scholars will be able to write notes on their learning. Is there any source for this? If this is not in fact ...
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Where is the rest of Rabbi Shmuel Belkin's manuscript of The Midrash of Philo?

I am currently researching Philo of Alexandria, also known as Philon (פילון) or Yedidyah HaKohen of Alexandria. There is a book that was prepared in manuscript by Rabbi Shmuel (Samuel) Belkin, z”l, ...
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Source for story about a murdering son-in-law whose family was swallowed alive

I stumbled upon a really random story in the middle of a sefer on the Azharos of Rav Shlomo ibn Gabirol. The author says he heard it from his father. Since he was discussing the prohibition of murder, ...
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Looking for a source on the city of Gilad

Some time ago I heard a Dvar Torah (which I brought here) by someone who stated, among other things, that the city of Gilad used to be, at least from the time of the sale of Yosef until it was ...
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Where does Ramchal's idea of circulating calendar come from?

I am in search of any source preceding Derech Hashem, 4:7:6 (Sefaria Translation): חגיגת החגים הזמניים: ואולם מלבד הקידוש הזה הנשער במדריגותיו כפי מדריגת קדושת הימים יש עוד ענינים פרטיים מיוחדים לכל ...
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Source for the menorah represents the wisdoms of the world?

This blog post claims that the Meiri along with other Rishonim taught that the Menorah ,mentioned in Behalotecha represents the 7 wisdoms of the world. Quoted here: The Meiri and other Rishonim say ...
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Where is the first time that Tehillim, Mishlei, Iyov are referred to as ספרי אמ"ת?

The books of Tehillim, Mishlei, Iyov are often referred as ספרי אמ"ת. Where is the first source making this reference?
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Source for Arizal Marital Advice

Rav Ezriel Tauber's To Become One (p.46) quotes a story about the Arizal who told a husband, "This is your tikun, the way you can repair a fault in your spiritual self. In a previous existence the ...
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When answering a greeting one should top it

On a daf yomi shiur I heard that when someone is being greeted/blessed he should reply with a greater blessing. When I heard that I thought that this was the reason why people reply shabbat shalom ...
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Source for Higher Infant Mortality Rates in the Winter of a Leap Year?

At the shiva for my infant son, someone said that the reason we say kaparat pesha in mussaf rosh chodesh, is that to atone for the sins that cause higher rates of stillbirth, miscarriages, and infant ...
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Source for Tehillim as remedies to specific problems

I have this (rather low-quality) "mini-siddur" e-book that I found long time ago. Among other things, it has a page called "Directory of Tehillim", which is a table where each Tehillim is assigned a ...
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Source for the Arizal identifying many unmarked graves of legendary Jewish figures?

I remember learning that many of the famous gravesites in Israel- the Rambam, Dan of the 12 tribes, Rav Shimon Bar Yochai, Ruth from Megillas Ruth (not necessarily these exact ones, just giving ...
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Where in the writings of the Vilna Gaon does he discuss how Rashi & Tosfot each explain a Talmudic “sugiya?”

Two days ago, I asked this question in the name of the Vilna Gaon. I was informed that the answer may be [also] found in the writings of Rav Chaim Volozhin. So, I re-phrased the question. My ...
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Source that the world was created for amalek

Numerous Midrashim list different things that the world was created for the purpose of such as Klal Yisrael, Bikkurim, Torah, Challah, and Maasros all of which are called "ראשית" (first). I remember ...
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What is the maximum age for Metzitza?

Part of the bris ceremony is metzitza. I was told that after a certain age (of the boy) it is not done (meaning an adult who gets a bris does not get metzitza). Is this true? What is the age? Source ...
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Was it a sin for Yitzchak to swear to Avimelech

The Midrash rebukes Avraham for swearing to Avimelech and making a covenant (Genesis 21:23-32): אָמַר לוֹ הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא אַתָּה נָתַתָּ שֶׁבַע כְּבָשׂוֹת בְּלִי רְצוֹנִי, חַיֶּיךָ ...
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Do idolaters pray to God?

A long time ago I read that our Sources say, "It is forbidden to disturb an idolater praying to his idols because, although he does not know it, he is praying to God." Is this accurate and what is the ...
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Why is Baruch-Hu-Uvaruch-Shmo answered only in the brachos after the Haftorah, but not in the bracha before?

As far as I recall, the minhag in all Ashkenaz shuls which I have ever attended, was not to answer Baruch-Hu-Uvaruch-Shmo to the name of Hashem in the Bracha which is said before the Haftorah, but in ...
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Who originally speculated that the Orchos Tzaddikim's author was a woman?

I recall hearing (as well as saw from this link) that it has been speculated that the author of the Orchos Tzaddikim was a woman. Did someone originally posit this idea, or is it a rumor that has ...
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84 views

Origin of the term “pilpul” as a method of Talmudic study

What is the source for referring to the known method of Talmudic study a "pilpul"? When did this usage begin?
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When were the decrees against the boys made?

In Parshat Sh'mot (Ex 1:15) Par'oh decrees that the boy children of the Hebrews should be killed. When was that moment in relation to the timeline of events in Egypt (the death of Yosef, the ...

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