21 votes
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Has the Torah been changed over the ages?

As you yourself say, the Muslim claims have never been backed up with proof. If there would be proof, why would they not inform us? That seems ample proof that it's a baseless claim. There are ...
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16 votes

Is one a heretic if he does not believe in Kabbalah?

My Rebbe Rav Avigdor Nevenzahl Shlit"a told me that his Rebbe ybcl'c Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach zt"l when serving as mesader kiddushin at a wedding, upon hearing that one of the witnesses under the ...
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16 votes

Is this chart of the mesorah of Torah available in English?

My sister made this chart. It is kind of a condensed version of the hebrew one: And here's a version with the titles transliterated, instead of translated:
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12 votes
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Is it possible for mesorah to be discovered?

There is a teshuva of the Rema in which he writes that if you find a Teshuva of the Gaonim, you could follow its opinion. I asked R' Zvi Berkowitz about this and he said this was restricted ...
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10 votes

Is one a heretic if he does not believe in Kabbalah?

The Bach in Siman 5 of Teshuvos Yeshanos writes this of someone who, among other problems, was כופר in תורת נסתר. וכל שכן המלעיג על דברי חכמים ומדבר דופי על חכמת הקבלה שהוא מקור התורה ועיקרה ...
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  • 4,603
10 votes
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Why no number of p'sukim for P'kude?

Aharon Ahrend has a detailed article in Rabbi Mordechai Breuer's Festschrift (vol. 1 p. 157) titled "The Mneumotechnical Notes of the Numbers of Verses in the Torah Portions" where he goes through the ...
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  • 95.1k
10 votes

What were Alter Halpern's main issues with Marcus Jastrow's Dictionary?

The article was published by R. Salomon Alter Halpern in Hamoreh (according to here the Jewish Observer, may be the same thing) in 1970 and was called "Some Facts About Marcus Jastrow's Dictionary." I ...
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  • 42.7k
10 votes

What is the source that says David wrote Psalms / Tehillim while hiding from Saul

Tehillim 54 לַמְנַצֵּ֥חַ בִּנְגִינֹ֗ת מַשְׂכִּ֥יל לְדָוִֽד׃ For the leader; with instrumental music. A maskil of David, בְּב֣וֹא הַ֭זִּיפִים וַיֹּאמְר֣וּ לְשָׁא֑וּל הֲלֹ֥א דָ֝וִ֗ד מִסְתַּתֵּ֥ר ...
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  • 1,757
9 votes

Has the Torah been changed over the ages?

I hadn't answered this question because I assumed that since there were so many answers already provided, that there must have been at least one answer that really satisified the question, in a ...
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  • 9,630
9 votes

What is the source for the tradition that the philtrum is formed by an angel before birth?

This blog post mentions that it appears in some collections of Jewish legends and the like, but not in any traditional Jewish sources. R. Chaim Kanievsy (in this Kuntres on Chinuch) was asked whether ...
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9 votes

I thought Gezeirah Shavah requires Mesorah

There are two different types of gzeirah shava specific words were part of the mesorah but the pesukim used and / or the actual item that was derived from the gzeirah shava may not have been part of ...
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9 votes
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Have any of you ever heard anyone pronouncing ayin as "ng"?

I believe that @YeZ is correct. When I lived in Washington Heights (upper Manhattan, NYC), I occasionally attended Cong. Sha'arei Hatikvah, which, I understand, still exists in the same location - ...
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9 votes

Why no number of p'sukim for P'kude?

From Chabad.org this question was once asked by Rabbi Alexander-Sender Yudasin to the Lubavitcher Rabbi Zatzal. The Rabbi said that perhaps since the Siman was = the words "בלי כל" the original Siman ...
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9 votes
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Transition from "Temple Judaism" to "Rabbinic Judaism"

The place to look for this is in Collected Writings of Rav S.R. Hirsch, the volume on Oral Law (I think Vol. 5 but I can't check it.) The volume is divided into two parts. The first part is a ...
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9 votes
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How to apply the Masoretic note, "2x, once plene and once defectively" to Ruth 1:1?

The Masoretic note you have is from the Leningrad Codex. However, the Aleppo Codex indicates in the masorah gedolah in Chronicles that there are 3 instances of the word (see also Mikraot Gedolot ...
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  • 6,995
9 votes
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What day of the week was Yeziyat Mizrayim?

According to Seder Olam Rabbah 5, it was on a Friday: ממחרת הפסח, ערב שבת היה, נסעו מרעמסס, שנאמר ויסעו בני ישראל מרעמסס סכתה, וכתיב ויסעו מרעמסס בחדש הראשון בחמשה עשר יום לחדש The day after [...
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8 votes

Is one a heretic if he does not believe in Kabbalah?

R. Meir Mazuz Shlita was asked the following question: אני רוצה לשאול בפרט על ה"דורדעים" שאינם מאמינים בחכמת הקבלה כל עיקר, אלא בדברי הגמרא, רב סעדיה גאון, הרמב"ם, וכדומה. איך יש להתיחס להם? האם ...
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8 votes

Soft Matzah for Ashkenazim

Rav Herschel Schachter has written a Teshuvah that Ashkenazim may eat soft Matzah. See here* for a discussion of his Teshuvah and some follow-up questions and answers about it. *Be advised that this ...
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  • 41.1k
8 votes

Has the Torah been changed over the ages?

There are differences between texts of Tanach now and in the past. In fact, there are several different so-called "textual witnesses" of Tanach that exist, each of which has their own strengths and ...
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  • 3,416
8 votes

Mesorah of the Lubavitcher Rebbe

The Baal Shem Tov's teacher was Rabbi Adam Baal Shem. For more details about the origins of the Baal Shem Tov's Mesorah, look at The Lubavitcher Rebbe's Memoirs (by the Previous Lubavitcher Rebbe) ...
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  • 31.3k
8 votes

What is the source that forbids indecent dress by women?

I still feel the question of "sources for indecent dress by women" deserves a better treatment than we (including me) provided up to now. So let me try again. In summary the key Torah verse ...
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8 votes

Vegan tekheileth

This requirement is stated in the Tosefta and Meseches Tzitzith Tosefta Menachoth 9:16 "תכלת אין כשרה אלא מן החלזון הביא שלא מן החלזון פסולה." Tekheleth is only valid from the חלזון ; if ...
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  • 17.2k
8 votes
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Tracing the Tradition of HaRav Shimshon Rafa'el Hirsch

According to Hebrew Wikipedia he received Semicha from the Chacham Tzvi. קיבל סמיכה מאת החכם צבי Still following the trail at Hebrew WP, he, in turn, learned from his grandfather, R' Ephraim ...
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8 votes

Do Jews accept The Book of the Wars of the Lord (סֵפֶר מִלְחֲמֹת יהוה) as an authentic part of Tanach

Nachmanides writes: ודרך הפשט ב"ספר מלחמות ה'", שהיו בדורות ההם אנשים חכמים כותבים ספר המלחמות הגדולות, כי כן בכל הדורות, ובעלי הספרים היו נקראים מושלים, שנושאים בהם משלים ומליצות, ...
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  • 1,693
8 votes

When the Torah was almost lost and one (or several) Rabbis saved it?

Yevamos (62b): שנים עשר אלף זוגים תלמידים היו לו לרבי עקיבא מגבת עד אנטיפרס וכולן מתו בפרק אחד מפני שלא נהגו כבוד זה לזה והיה העולם שמם עד שבא ר"ע אצל רבותינו שבדרום ושנאה להם ר"מ ור' יהודה ...
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  • 4,119
7 votes
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List of Halachot LiMosheh MiSinai

Thanks to @Sharshi, this question is answered. 31_halachos_lmoshe_misinai_according_to_the_rambam In the introduction to his commentary on the Mishna, the Rambam lists 31 halachos l’Moshe miSinai, ...
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  • 24.3k
7 votes
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Hammurabi in Jewish sources

The similarity and relationship between the Code of Hammurabi and the Torah have been noted by many. Some responses: R' J.H. Hertz (summarized): R' Hertz shows that the more we know about The ...
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  • 10.2k
7 votes

What is the basis that allows Rabbis to create laws?

This is answered directly by Rambam in his introduction to the Mishna Torah. This authority to make new laws was taught directly by Moshe Rabbeinu as cited below from Deuteronomy 17:11. "The mitzvot ...
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7 votes
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What is the basis that allows Rabbis to create laws?

Sources For Rabbinic Authority There are several divergent approaches to this. Rambam (Introduction to MT: 26) is of the opinion that Rabbinic legislation falls under the rubric of "Do not stray ...
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