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Questions tagged [words]

Questions about the definitions, meaning and use of words specific to Judaism or words that carry unique meaning in Jewish law.

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Hinei - Bereishit 25:24 [duplicate]

When Rivka feels something amiss inside her, she goes to ask. In Bereishit 25:22-23 she is told that there are 2 nations in her belly and the elder will serve the younger. Then, in verse 24, when the ...
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2answers
94 views

What does נמר in Tanach mean

What does נמר quoted in this Passuk mean: ירמיהו יג, כג: היהפוך כושי עורו ונמר חברבורותיו I see it translated as a leopard e.g. in mishna avot 5.20 and in "What's the point of Jeremiah 13:18–...
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1answer
130 views

How does the 19th brocho of the shmona esrai open?

I see nusach taiman has it starting with למשומדים אל תהי תקוה  I see the rambam has that too Rambam (mechon mamre) לַמְּשֻׁמָּדִים אַל תְּהִי תִקְוָה, כָּל הַמִּינִים כְּרֶגַע יֹאבֵדוּ, ...
3
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1answer
147 views

Why can't we say the word “hell”?

It seems to me that in many Orthodox communities it is considered improper to say the word "hell". Why is this so? Why is it any worse than saying "Gehenim" or "Purgatory"?
4
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1answer
211 views

Satan meaning Tempter?

I found a great story online from which I would like to quote a part: The word satan in the Bible seems to mean merely “opponent”. For instance, the angel who obstructs Bilaam’s progress is ...
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0answers
32 views

La'asot meaning “to prepare food”

In parshat Vayera, Bereishit 18:7, the text relates that וְאֶל הַבָּקָר רָץ אַבְרָהָם וַיִּקַּח בֶּן בָּקָר רַךְ וָטוֹב וַיִּתֵּן אֶל הַנַּעַר וַיְמַהֵר לַעֲשׂוֹת אֹתוֹ Avraham ran, chose an animal, ...
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3answers
105 views

What is Avadon in the Mesilat Yesharim?

In the Mesilat Yesharim ch.2 "contemplating and watching over his deeds and ways whether they are good or evil; not abandoning his soul to the danger of Avadon" מתבונן ומפקח על מעשיו ודרכיו, הטובים ...
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2answers
318 views

Ma'ariv vs. Arvit - when did these terms first appear?

I have seen two terms used to refer to the evening prayer Ma'ariv and Arvit. If I recall correctly, Arvit seems to be the more common Talmudic term esp. in Talmud Brachot. Ma'ariv is used near the ...
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2answers
614 views

Birkat Hamazon: Chaverai vs Rabotai

When chanting Birkat Hamazon, I always thought it started Chaverai n'varech, but I have recently attended a Conservadox Bar Mitzvah, where they used Rabotai n'varech. Here are some images; I found the ...
3
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3answers
93 views

תְּחִלָה vs. בְּרֵאשִׁית

Why is בְּרֵאשִׁית used in Bereshit 1:1 but תְּחִלָה used in Shoftim 1:1? Both words mean beginning/first as far as I can tell. I am just wondering why one is used in one location and the other ...
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1answer
194 views

Rashi's explanation of B'etzem Hayom Hazeh

In Devarim, 32:48, the pasuk uses the phrase בְּעֶצֶם הַיּוֹם הַזֶּה (on that very day). Rashi there comments בשלשה מקומות נאמר בעצם היום הזה, (: Heb. בְּעֶצֶם הַיּוֹם הַזֶּה. In three places ...
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1answer
676 views

What is the difference between a Ger Toshav, a Ben Noach, an Akum and a Nochri?

These terms get used a lot in referring to gentiles. What are the precise differences, if any, between these different categories? Just for clarity, Akum is an abbreviation of the phrase 'Eved ...
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0answers
59 views

Was there nothing Tov about Shabbat?

During creation, many of the days have the phrase "vayar Elokim ki tov" after some aspect of the creation on that day. The second day does not -- the Stone edition mentions a Rashi that the term ...
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37 views

To form, different roots

Are the roots צור (to form, shape, fashion) יצר (to create) and צר (to shape, form, model) related or do they just share similar meanings? Are there any commentaries, scriptures, that connect these ...
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0answers
158 views

How did the word Yetzer begot it's meaning of inclination?

Looking for the connection of Yetzer and the translation as inclanation, I was surprised that almost every Hebrew word derived from the same root had to do with creating. So how did a word (from a ...
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0answers
40 views

Spelling ירושלים as ירושלם [duplicate]

In almost all cases, I have seen the word "Yerushalayim" spelled like this: יְרוּשָׁלַיִם. However, sometimes I have seen it spelled like this: יְרוּשָׁלִַם, missing a י between the ל and the ם. Is ...
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1answer
67 views

What's the difference in the terms עָוֺן פֶּשַׁע חַטָּאָה in Exodus 34:6-7

Exodus 34:6-7 says, וַיַּעֲבֹ֨ר יְהוָ֥ה ׀ עַל־פָּנָיו֮ וַיִּקְרָא֒ יְהוָ֣ה ׀ יְהוָ֔ה אֵ֥ל רַח֖וּם וְחַנּ֑וּן אֶ֥רֶךְ אַפַּ֖יִם וְרַב־חֶ֥סֶד וֶאֱמֶֽת ׀ נֹצֵ֥ר חֶ֙סֶד֙ לָאֲלָפִ֔ים נֹשֵׂ֥א עָוֺ֛ן ...
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108 views

Source for not saying Mazel Tov when pregnant

There seems to be a custom of not saying Mazel Tov on hearing news or observing that someone is pregnant (there are even those that correct others that say Mazel Tov). Instead they say Beshaah Tovah, ...
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1answer
88 views

Hell or something else: גהנום/ גהנם and שאול what are these?

'Hell' as described in most dictionaries doesn't seem to be the right translation. Yet a lot of translations of the Tanakh uses this word to translate words such as Sheol and Gehinom ( גהנום/ גהנם and ...
2
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1answer
59 views

The afflicted, poor and humble a reference to the command to afflict oneself on Yom Kippur

How do we know that 'v'initem' (Leviticus 16:31) includes fasting in the context of Yom Kippur? How does this usage relate to usage of the word, or related words, in other contexts? Some food for ...
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1answer
48 views

Does the term “G-d” (i.e Elokim) include the concept of ruler?

Often times Hashem is referred to as Elokim or Elokecha and the like, (10 commandments etc.) does this term include the terms/concepts of manhig or reshuiot? In other words, could someone ...
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What's the difference between נכה and הרג?

In בראשית chapter/verse 4:15 and in various other places the words הכות) נכה) and הרג are used which both seem to be interchangeable in english translations. וַיֹּ֧אמֶר ל֣וֹ יְהוָ֗ה לָכֵן֙ כָּל ־ ...
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110 views

Does the word distribution in the Torah follow Zipfs law? [closed]

Does the word distribution in the Torah (ie the Pentateuch) follow Zipfs law where the frequency of a word's occurrence is inversely proportional to its statistical rank (ie does the 2nd most commonly ...
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1answer
90 views

What's the essence of the root עבד

The root עבד is often used as a verb in context of doing work, of service (doing work for someone), worship (doing work for a god). The noun (avodah) is used likewise. The related word עבד (eved) is ...
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44 views

In what sense is the nesher connected to geulah?

Parshas shemini lists the nesher (vulture?) as non-kosher animal. But Ieshaiahu describes the future geulah connecting the tzadikim with neshirim (ישעיה מ:לא). Also, Sforno in parshas haazinu alludes ...
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1answer
158 views

Actualizing Avodah Shebalev

Found this online: quote : As the Rav puts it, Avodah Shebalev is a constant requirement (Kiyum Hamitzvah) where Tefilah is one of many ways (Ma’aseh Hamitzvah) of actualizing it. I thought that ...
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1answer
98 views

What happened to the “D'mut”?

In Bereishit 1:26, Hashem says (all text and translation from the Chabad site's Judaica Press version) And God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness, וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים נַעֲשֶׂה ...
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2answers
104 views

Is there an expression to thank Hashem for good news?

My friend just found out that her cancer is a treatable variety. Is there a Hebrew phrase to thank Hashem for this good news? Baruch Dayan HaEmet I believe is only for news of a death, but thanks for ...
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1answer
56 views

Is there a source in Judaism that uses the word “Mesora” to refer to the masoretic tradition?

I am familiar with the term Mesora to mean not just any tradition but particularly - Oral tradition, in the sense of, the mishna, or traditions or midrashim brought forth in the talmud. I was ...
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1answer
407 views

In RAMBAM hilchot avoda zara 9:4 What publisher or translator first changed notzrim to canaanites?

In this censored version online at chabad.org, Hilchot Avoda Zara 9:4 says: "The Canaanites are idol worshipers [sic], and Sunday is their festival..." (And it says Canaanites in both the hebrew ...
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3answers
289 views

What is “Pannag”?

In the book of Ezeqiel, chpater 27 verse 17 we read: יְהוּדָה וְאֶרֶץ יִשְׂרָאֵל הֵמָּה רֹכְלָיִךְ בְּחִטֵּי מִנִּית וּפַנַּג וּדְבַשׁ וָשֶׁמֶן וָצֹרִי נָתְנוּ מַעֲרָבֵךְ. What is 'Pannag' (פנג) ...
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75 views

Words can create

I have heard that for many years. Words can create.Some say if you read Tehillim you are creating. Could someone help me with this question. Im trying to ask. Does everything we say create something?...
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143 views

What does Radak mean by מקור?

Sefer Yehoshua chapter one verse 13 reads: זָכוֹר֙ אֶת־הַדָּבָ֔ר אֲשֶׁ֨ר צִוָּ֥ה אֶתְכֶ֛ם מֹשֶׁ֥ה עֶֽבֶד־יְהוָ֖ה לֵאמֹ֑ר יְהוָ֤ה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם֙ מֵנִ֣יחַ לָכֶ֔ם וְנָתַ֥ן לָכֶ֖ם אֶת־הָאָ֥רֶץ הַזֹּֽאת ...
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2answers
101 views

Different words for “desire”

In the (second presentation of the) tenth commandment (Deut 5:17), why does the Torah use two different words in Hebrew (תחמד and תתאוה) that mean almost the same thing is English ("covet" or "desire")...
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80 views

Origin for the song Bederech Hamelech

Yaakov Shwekey composed a song called Bederech Hamelech. Here are the lyrics: ומבלעדיך אין לנו מלך אין לנו מלך גואל ומושיע ומבלעדיך אין לנו מלך אין לנו מלך גואל ומושיע ומבלעדיך אין לנו מלך אין ...
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3answers
125 views

Meaning and origin of the term המקום as one of G-d's names

The name המקום is used as a name for G-d. The word means, literally, "the place". What does this mean when referring to G-d who has no "place"? When did this term originate?
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1answer
102 views

Amount of words to speak during one's lifetime [duplicate]

I read somewhere that, "Every person is granted a certain amount of words to speak during his lifetime, except for that which pertains to Torah and mitzvos. Thus, every person can add some years to ...
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6answers
1k views

Is the title: “New” Testament offensive to Jews? Alternative neutral name?

Having lived in Israel during several periods of my life, I know that the words "Old" in the "Old Testament" and "New" in the "New Testament" are offensive to many Jews. From what I understand, it's ...
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1answer
78 views

Why is it always YHVH Elohim and not in the reverse order?

If I'm correct within the Tenach it's always the term Elohim following the term YHVH. You always read verses and phrases stating: 'YHVH Elohim' and never 'Elohim YHVH'. So why is this?
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1answer
166 views

Sources that it is also the husbands responsibility to make peace between a husband and wife (or examples where he does it)

Sources that it is also the husbands responsibility to make peace between a husband and wife (or sources of examples of where a man does it) (are we not thought the opposite, not that he should ...
8
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2answers
188 views

ברוך שם כבוד מלכותו לעולם ועד after a bracha with a false statement

If we make a bracha levatala or say Hashem's name by accident, we say ברוך שם כבוד מלכותו לעולם ועד. Is this true only if the original bracha is a valid praise of Hashem, or even if it contains false ...
1
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1answer
95 views

Be a blessing; what does it mean

In Bereshit (Genesis) 12:2 HaShem tells Avraham that he should be a blessing: V'heyeh Bracha: וֶהְיֵה, בְּרָכָה But what does it mean that someone is a blessing? Isn't all blessing from HaShem, the ...
2
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1answer
129 views

Is there a word for this concept? [closed]

I recently learned the Korean word han, which, according to Wikipedia, "denotes a collective feeling of oppression and isolation in the face of insurmountable odds (the overcoming of which is beyond ...
1
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1answer
78 views

Arising in the morning and baal t'shaktzu

Im learning about getting up in the morning and learned that one must wash their hands before anything else otherwise they will violate the prohibition of baal t'shaktzu? What is baal t'shaktzu?
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2answers
129 views

What does קרי mean in Parashat Bechukotai?

In Parashat Bechukotai, the word קרי comes up often to describe intransigence. What is this word? Is it ever still used?
4
votes
2answers
228 views

What does the term “glatt kosher” mean, today?

A mashgiach explained to me that the term "glatt kosher" means that the lungs of cattle and sheep (the 2 main kosher animals sold in U.S.) are smooth and do not have air pockets. I hope that I have ...
3
votes
3answers
228 views

Prayer Meditation; help understanding terms

Could someone explain the terms of kavanah, hitbodedut and hitbonenut in relation to Tefilah (prayer)? I know that these are all forms of meditation of some kind; but are they integrated in the way ...
3
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2answers
97 views

How can Nefesh mean a dead person?

In Vayikra 21:1 it's stated that one should not defile himself for any (dead) nefesh (person). How can a word like nefesh which seems to be the force that animated the body and gave it it's life, ...
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1answer
84 views

What's the difference between idol worship and star worship?

We translate עובדי עבודה זרה to mean serving an idol or idol worship. The word זר mean foreign, as in, לא יהיה אל זר, do not serve a foreign god. The word עובד כוכבים means serving the stars. What ...
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29 views

The meaning of the words קדושה or קדוש [duplicate]

Does the word קדושה or קדוש mean holiness or separate?