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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1
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4answers
131 views

Why do we need to daven out loud if G-D can hear our thoughts?

We know that G-D is all knowing, and all powerful. Therefore, when we pray, why does it have to be out loud? There are some brachos that you are not even יוצא if you say it quietly! Then why do we ...
-2
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1answer
71 views

Which is the correct pronounciation? [closed]

Which is correct? Mesirut nefesh or mesirat nefesh? I have always used mesirut, but see mesirat also.
4
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3answers
167 views

שקר and שוא The difference between

What's the difference between these 'falses' (שקר and שוא?), how does one distinguish them from one another? Exodus 20:16: עד שקר Exodus 23:1: שמע שוא Exodus 23:7: שקר Deuteronomium 5:20: עד שוא ...
7
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4answers
257 views

Age of Universe and Shabbat

If one believes that our world is billions of years old, i.e. accepting the idea of each day in Sheshis Imei Berieshit (the Six Days of Creation) as eras and not literal days, then how does one ...
4
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2answers
242 views

why does Ruth 1:8 use עמדי instead of עמי?

Ruth 1:8 says: ח וַתֹּאמֶר נָעֳמִי, לִשְׁתֵּי כַלֹּתֶיהָ, לֵכְנָה שֹּׁבְנָה, אִשָּׁה לְבֵית אִמָּהּ; יעשה (יַעַשׂ) יְהוָה עִמָּכֶם חֶסֶד, כַּאֲשֶׁר עֲשִׂיתֶם עִם-הַמֵּתִים וְעִמָּדִי. 8 And ...
5
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1answer
52 views

Difference between רבון and אדון

In the Beracha of Elohai, we refer to God using a number of different descriptives. Towards the end, we give thanks to God as: רִבּוֹן כָּל הַמַּעֲשִׂים, אֲדוֹן כָּל הַנְּשָׁמוֹת. What are some ...
5
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3answers
102 views

Is there a difference between מכות and מלקות?

The two terms seem to mean the same thing, both referring to lashes. Even in Mishnayos, they seem to be used interchangeably. For instance, in Makkos 1:2: מְעִידִין אָנוּ בְאִישׁ פְּלוֹנִי ...
5
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7answers
260 views

what is good and what does it mean that God is good?

What does the term "tov" (good) mean? I am asking especially in how it relates to God. I.e. what does "tov" mean and what does it mean that God is "tov"? An example where God is ascribed "tov" is ...
3
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1answer
55 views

How does “וירא א׳ את האור כי טוב” imply goodness per se?

Haamek Davar to B'reshis 1:4 explains that "טוב" can mean either "good for its intended purpose" (even if that purpose is not good) or "good in truth". The אור (light, let's say) created on the first ...
0
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2answers
125 views

What is Deveikut (clinging to God)?

In chapter 1 of the Mesilat Yesharim (Path of the Just), the author writes: "When you look further into the matter, you will see that true perfection is only clinging to God". What does "clinging to ...
9
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2answers
218 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 ...
2
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2answers
189 views

Why was Chanah called an “Ishah Kesheirah”?

The Gemoro says that when Chanah was caught by Eli davening and whispering, he asked the Urim Vetumim about her to see if she was ok. The letters ה ר ש כ appeared on the Urim Vetumim. Eli understood ...
2
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1answer
79 views

Assist with Rash“i's explanation of verb usage - ”N-CH-L" in describing the tribal heads who will inherit the land

Numbers 34:18: וְנָשִׂ֥יא אֶחָ֛ד נָשִׂ֥יא אֶחָ֖ד מִמַּטֶּ֑ה תִּקְח֖וּ לִנְחֹ֥ל אֶת־הָאָֽרֶץ׃ Numbers 34:29 אֵ֕לֶּה אֲשֶׁ֖ר צִוָּ֣ה יְהוָ֑ה לְנַחֵ֥ל אֶת־בְּנֵֽי־יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל בְּאֶ֥רֶץ ...
1
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1answer
110 views

Why do most Siddurs vowelize Gd’s name?

I’m noticing that in most siddurs, while you’re not meant to pronounce Gd’s name as it’s written, they vowelize the letters as if it’s meant to be said. Is this for kavannah? Why would we need vowels ...
2
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3answers
481 views

Ger Tzedek/Tzadik earliest sources and definition

As I understand a "Ger Tzedek/Tzadik" is a fully converted follower of the Torah of Moshe. According to Hilchot Melachim 10:3-4, a "Ger Tzedek" is defined as someone who has confirmed their conversion ...
10
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2answers
200 views

Why is אותו מקום referred to as the מקום התורף? What does תורף mean?

In Bavli Berachot 24a (and Shabbat 64b), the Gemara records that: כל המסתכל באצבע קטנה של אשה כאילו מסתכל במקום התורף -- Anyone who gazes upon a woman’s little finger is considered as if he gazed ...
4
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1answer
109 views

Difference between שֵׁבֶט and מַטֶּה

I wondered if there is a difference between the words שֵׁבֶט (rod, stick, staff) and מַטֶּה (rod, stick, staff) in matter of function, symbolism, and 'spiritual meaning'? A mateh seems almost like a ...
1
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1answer
162 views

Is there math in Torah?

I have watched a nice movie back in the day that deals with numbers. In one of the scenes. A Jewish man comes to The Mathematician and tells about how the Hebrew uses the same "letters" as letters ...
0
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2answers
112 views

The word Yamakah [closed]

I’ve looked all over the internet for the origin of the word Yamaka. I guess you could also spell it yamakah. I’m so confused because I grew up using it and people I speak with still use it. However, ...
9
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2answers
634 views

Who is rich in matters of courtship?

The Mishna says: If a man says to a woman, "Marry me. I am rich.", and she agrees, but it turns out he is poor, the betrothal is not valid. If a man says to a woman, "Marry me, even though I am poor."...
2
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1answer
1k views

What is the origin of the Yiddish word “nebach”? Is there a Jewish, Biblical source? [closed]

I've found numerous articles about what the word "nebach" (נעבעך) means, for example here and here. However, I have not been able to determine the true source of it. Is this word, so commonly used ...
4
votes
1answer
107 views

Why introduce holidays with the word “yom”?

In Ya'aleh V'yavo, in tefilla for the 3 regalim and in Kiddush for the regalim, we have options for the particular Yom Tov. The specific day is listed, and is always introduced with the word "b'yom" (...
12
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3answers
1k views

Posek vs. Rabbi?

It seems to me obvious that certain sheilos are best dealt with by only the leading Rabbanim. At the same time colloquially we often say a Rabbi has "paskened" a sheilah when the answer is fairly ...
2
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1answer
90 views

Small Dalet in Mishlei (Proverbs) 28:17

In Mishlei (Proverbs) 28:17, the letter dalet is small in the word "adam". Why is this?
5
votes
2answers
384 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
83 views

Meaning of komemiyyut (קוֹמְמִיּוּת)

The word "komemiyyut" (קוֹמְמִיּוּת) appears only once in the Torah: אֲנִ֞י יְהוָ֣ה אֱלֹֽהֵיכֶ֗ם אֲשֶׁ֨ר הוֹצֵ֤אתִי אֶתְכֶם֙ מֵאֶ֣רֶץ מִצְרַ֔יִם מִֽהְיֹ֥ת לָהֶ֖ם עֲבָדִ֑ים וָאֶשְׁבֹּר֙ מֹטֹ֣ת ...
3
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2answers
2k views

What is a Hava Amina Teretz?

B"H If "hava amina" means slightest notion, what is a hava amina teretz? I think teretz means an answer. So what is a slightest notion answer?
2
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0answers
63 views

Connection between Terafim and Therapy?

During a hesped for Rav Belsky z"tl, Rav Yisroel Reisman mentions Rav Belsky's ability to connect common words with their Torah source, alluding to "terafim" of Lavan being connected with "therapy". ...
1
vote
1answer
46 views

Jeremiah 23:33 - “burden”?

I have difficulties to understand the German term "Last" or "Lastwort" in the common Christian German translations of Jeremiah chap 23, verse 33 (corresponding to "burden" in English versions). Thanks ...
11
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37answers
3k views

words often mispronounced [closed]

What are some words commonly mispronounced? (Not by elision/reduction (like ה׳‎→אדְני‎) or assimilation (like תזכרו‎→תשׂכרו‎), but rather words that are pronounced wrong ...
0
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0answers
41 views

Deep Sleep Genesis 15.12

I would like to know if the "deep sleep" of Abraham (Genesis 15.12) is literally a "sleep", or a state of "trance" as The Midrash of Philo says (15.12). What does the biblical term mean? Also, ...
1
vote
1answer
104 views

Use of “please” in Torah

How many times is the word "please" used in the Torah? In the Akeida Hashem asks Abraham to "Please take your son" Are there any other places in the Torah where Hashem uses the word "please"?
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0answers
47 views

La'asot meaning “to prepare food”

In parshat Vayera, Bereishit 18:7, the text relates that וְאֶל־הַבָּקָ֖ר רָ֣ץ אַבְרָהָ֑ם וַיִּקַּ֨ח בֶּן־בָּקָ֜ר רַ֤ךְ וָטוֹב֙ וַיִּתֵּ֣ן אֶל־הַנַּ֔עַר וַיְמַהֵ֖ר לַֽעֲשׂ֥וֹת אֹתֽוֹ׃ Avraham ...
0
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0answers
64 views

Bphi Kol Chai not Bphe

In SA Orach Chaim 187:1 in Mishnah Brurah Sif Beis, he writes that the phrase in Birchas Hamazon should be 'Bphi' kol chai and not 'Bphe'. Anyone have an idea why?
1
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0answers
40 views

Torah confusion between “daylight” and “a day”

The Torah uses the same word יום in the same verse to denote both "daylight" and "24 hours": וַיִּקְרָא אֱלֹהִים לָאוֹר יוֹם וְלַחֹשֶׁךְ קָרָא לָיְלָה וַיְהִי־עֶרֶב וַיְהִי־בֹקֶר יוֹם אֶחָד׃ ...
1
vote
0answers
127 views

Remes - רֶמֶשׂ - in Genesis 9:3

In Genesis 9:3 Noah is told he can eat every moving thing that lives, but I have always had a problem with the translation of moving thing meaning every live animal. The word translated as moving ...
4
votes
0answers
29 views

Why is mercy the only characteristic that is quantified?

In the Hoshana poem L'ma'an Amitach, various characteristics of God are enlisted as a reason for God to save us. The version appearing in my prayerbook, and recited in congregations I have been ...
0
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1answer
71 views

What are “nachas rights”? [closed]

I have just come across the phrase "nachas rights" and Google does not lead me to a definition. It is in the writing of a British Jew, I expect from Stamford Hill.
2
votes
0answers
37 views

Difference between תא and לשכה

Middos 4:3 uses the term תאים to refer to the 38 chambers in the Beis HaMikdash. I was surprised to see this usage, as the term לשכה appears 29 times in Mishnayos, plus another 12 in the plural, ...
2
votes
0answers
37 views

Where does HaShem stands and in which council?

Psalm 82 teaches that Elohim (אלהים) stands (נצב to position oneself) within the council/congregation (עדת-אל) of El, among/amidst (בקרב) elohiem (אלהים) He judge (ישפט). Someone told me to look at ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

What does having a Mehudar Etrog and Lulav mean over just having a kosher set?

I often hear the word 'Mehudar' used during this time of year to refer to special Lulav-and-Etrog sets. What does Mehudar mean?
0
votes
1answer
55 views

What other phrase did the rabbis use to describe “yom teruah” besides the ones below?

What other phrase did the rabbis use to describe "yom teruah" besides the ones below? Our rabbis of blessed memory gave additional "phrases" to describe or to name our holy days. For example, the ...
3
votes
3answers
705 views

What Talmudic manuscripts (if any) have Jesus instead of Balaam? / What Does 'MS.M. Jesus' mean?

What manuscripts (if any) have Jesus instead of Balaam? I'm aware that some claim that balaam is a code-word for Jesus. I know Rabbi Gil Student makes a good argument that it cannot be I have read ...
0
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0answers
61 views

Why is it important that Shammay's daughter-in-law gave birth?

I heard the Gemmorah is justifying Rebbe for omitting key words in the Mishna for his brevity. Succah 2,8 says: מַעֲשֶׂה וְיָלְדָה כַלָּתוֹ שֶׁל שַׁמַּאי הַזָּקֵן וּפִחֵת אֶת הַמַּעֲזִיבָה ...
6
votes
1answer
137 views

What does מעלה עליו הכתוב mean?

There are two consecutive Mishnayos in Pirkei Avos that use the phrase "מעלה עליו הכתוב", which loosely translates to 'scripture treats him as...' The first is: רַבִּי שִׁמְעוֹן אוֹמֵר, ...
11
votes
3answers
322 views

Shiluach HaKen: why not “Hatzipor”

If you send away the bird, why is Shiluach HaKen called that, meaning "sending the nest", and not "Shiluach Hatzipor", "sending the bird"? The nest is staying in place!
6
votes
1answer
54 views

The difference between ארון and תיבה in the Torah

I'm a little confused here: in contemporary Hebrew the difference is simple - a box that opens on the side [and has a door] is called a cabinet (ארון) while a box that opens on the top is called a box ...
3
votes
0answers
29 views

Chanun V'Rachum vs. Rachum V'Chanun

In the long tachanun of Monday and Thursday (among other places) there is repeated use of Chanun V'Rachum (a phrase which appears in Nach 8 or so times) אֵל טוב וְסַלָּח כִּי אֵל מֶלֶךְ חַנוּן ...
0
votes
2answers
84 views

Mishloach Manos or Shalach Manos?

What is the proper grammar of giving/receiving mishloach manos/shalach manos? I've heard people use both terms as in, "I'm preparing mishloach manos for tomorrow" and "I hope to bring the shalach ...
2
votes
0answers
44 views

Why doesn't our decrease of joy extend beyond Tish'a B'Av?

Citing from here There is a famous Mishnah that is cited towards the end of Masechet Ta’anit (4:6) that states: “Mishenichnas Av, Mema’atin Besimcha” “When the month of Av arrives, we ...

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