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59

You've come to the right place. The Bible explicitly allowed a man to have more than one wife. Exodus 21:10 talks about making sure the first wife still gets the same resources and attention now that she's not the only one. So yes, it was accepted in the times of Kings David and Solomon. Those kings are recorded as having quite a few wives (though ...


25

Based on the Sefer ha-Hassidim there was a belief that the souls of the dead would pray in the synagogue at night when no one was around... based on that it appears that the belief arose in Eastern Europe that placing the key to the synagogue beneath the pillow of the goses would help his soul escape the body as it would be stirred to join up with the other ...


23

The Aruch HaShulchan says that since wine and other drinks were expensive and they only drank water, they did not Bentch on a Kos. HaRav Moshe Feinstein Zatzal says that since for hundreds of years due to the lack of wine Jews relied on the Poskim that say you do not need a Kos -- therefore even today when wine is readily available we retain the Halacha ...


21

Per the Igros Moshe the bride does not have to cover her hair until the morning after the wedding. The reasoning is that so long that she retains a public presumption of virginity, she has no obligation to cover her hair.


21

Very good question. The Piskei Tshuvos 5:492 brings down that scrupulous individuals are accustomed to eat matzah on peasach sheni. In footnote 9, he brings down that in the siddur Yaavetz (Rav Yaakov Emden) that it was revealed to him from the heavens that the kedusha of pesach and matzah lasts until pesach sheni because when they went out from Egypt they ...


19

The luchot are a 1 amah cube of sapphire (6x6x6 tefachim) (Baba Basra 14a) 3x6x6 tefachim individually (Baba Basra 14a) The writing filled each side ("tradition". I think I saw this in a Gemara too) There are more words in the first 5 commandments, so the letters were a smaller size to fit.(Mabit) The letters were carved straight through the luchot. (Shmot ...


19

The custom of eating dairy on Shavuos is mentioned by several ראשונים including: רבינו אביגדור צרפתי- probably the earliest source (12th century), possible one of the בעלי התוספות פירושים ופסקים לרבינו אביגדור הצרפתי על התורה (מהדורת הרשקוביץ, ירושלים תשנ"ו) פסקים תקצה-ח The Kol Bo (סימן נב) Orchos Chaim (הל' תפלת המועדים אות יג)


18

The oldest reference to this tradition that I am aware of is the Taz ("Turei Zahav"), by David haLevi Segal, 17th c. הלוחש על המכה או על החולה ורוקק ואחר כך קורא פסוק מן התורה אין לו חלק לעוה"ב One who whispers over a wound or over a sick person and who spits, and who then recites a verse from the Torah has no portion in the world to come. ...


17

Indeed, the Lubavitcher Rebbe zt"l (sicha of Shabbos Parshas Ki Tisa 5741 secs. 55-57) called for them to always be depicted as square, in keeping with the Gemara you mentioned. (And Chabad publications long before that, as far back as 1942 at least, followed the same convention.) He states that shape with rounded tops was popularized by non-Jewish printers....


16

The Lubavitcher Rebbe said a sicha on this topic, and I really recommend reading it in full. Abridged and translated here. Original and unedited here. Worked-up version by the Rebbe here. In summary, Rashi explains the concept of "confounding Satan" as follows: "So that he will not accuse; for when he hears how the Jewish people love the mitzvos, his ...


16

The part of the arm that matters when counting the number of loops around the arm is from the elbow to the wrist. The Chabad custom is to wrap the straps so that there are 6 complete loops and 2 half loops. This equals 7 complete loops, but may look like one is wrapping 8 loops. As you can see from this picture from Chabad.org's article about Tefillin, the ...


16

Taamei Haminhagim (p. 270, footnote) records a story told by the Minchas Elazar of Munkatch, in which the Ohr Hachaim (R. Chaim ibn Attar, 1696-1743) gave such a note to someone to put into the Wall. So it goes back at least that far.


16

You are right. There is a Shita of the Meiri Bais HaBechira in Megila that says that on Parshas Shekalim you should only take out one Sefer Torah. I imagine that the reason the Shulchan Aruch mentions that we use two Sefer Torahs is because of Lo Pelug.


15

It's mentioned in the Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 11:24: Since the mezuzah serves as a reminder of the Oneness of Hashem's Name, therefore, when leaving the house and when entering you should kiss the mezuzah. Sefaria translation The Rama to Yoreh Deah 285:2, however, mentions that one should just put his hand on the Mezuza. (As a side note, the ...


15

The oldest source I could find is the Likutei MaHarich - (c. 1900). I recall hearing that the custom started, since the Halacha is that if the lady forgot to light one week she has to add a candle in future weeks, often when a lady gave birth they were busy and forgot. (Childbirth was not as easy years ago). Due to this they added a candle and today it has ...


15

The Lubavitcher Rebbe said that the custom among Lubavitch was to cut the Peos. He said that there are a few reasons, one of which is to avoid mixing the two types of light from the 13 strands of the beard. He also mentioned that the Arizal used to cut his Peos (as is written in the Shaarei Hamitzvos and Taamei Hamitzvos parshas Kedoshim).


15

The only source I have yet to find acknowledging this switch in clothing from a Sephardic perspective is in the English edition to the Yalkut Yosef Hilkhot Shabbat. Under Siman 242, Halakhah 5, regarding the mitzvah to change from weekday clothes into more elegant garments, the editor (R. Yisrael Bitan) added a special footnote: The Kabbalists ruled that ...


15

The debatable: Kabbalistic sources about beards, or about spiritually-destructive forces involved in removing a beard. Much ink has been spilled over how much facial hair was worn by the kabbalist Rabbi Menachem Azariah of Fano. Cutting your beard means you're trying to look like a non-Jew. Chasam Sofer vehemently opposes this argument, observing that in ...


15

Rama writes, when discussing how to spell the various Hebrew months in a Get (Shulchan Aruch EH 126:7): אייר, בשני יודי"ן; ואם כתב בחד יו"ד, פסול, אם לא בשעת הדחק. ויש נמנעין ליתן גט באייר, אך במקום הדחק נותנין וכותבין בב' יודי"ן.‏ Iyar is spelled with two Yuds. If one wrote it with one Yud, it is invalid except in pressing circumstances. Some ...


14

The Aruch Hashulchan (Yoreh Deah 283:6) equates all printed sefarim with regards to their holiness and in the matter of placing them one on top of another: יורה דעה סימן רפג סעיף ו וכתב רבינו הרמ"א דכל זה בחומשים העשויים בגליון כספר תורה. אבל בשלנו שהם נכרכים – אין חילוק בין חומש לנביא. עד כאן לשונו. כלומר: דוודאי כל ספרי קודש הם קדושים, אך זהו קדושה כללית....


14

According to the Chazon Ish (Orach Chaim 24:20) they must be completely dry before washing or the washing is invalid b'dieved. According to the Mishna Berura (Beiur Halachah 162:2) they may even be completely wet before washing. The Baal haTanya apparently holds in his Shulchan Aruch like the Mishna Berura but rules in his siddur like the Chazon Ish.


14

Naming children after the living is only discouraged among Ashkenazi Jews; among Sefardim it's not uncommon. (From Aish.com) Sephardi Jews also name children after relatives who are still alive. This source is from the Talmud, which records a child named after Rabbi Natan while he was still alive (Shabbat 134a) The reasons why Ashkenazim don't are: (...


14

Assuming the question means why do we shockel/shuckle in davening, I found the following article by Rabbi Yaakov Salomon who quotes Rabbi Shimon Schwab ztz"l. He says that our relationship with HaShem in davenning is motivated by love (swaying forward) and fear (moving away). There are those who are against shockeling in davening, see for example here under "...


14

The Tur (OC 271) here brings three reasons why we cover the challah. 1) To establish that the meal is coming because of the kiddush. The Talmud (Pesachim 100b) quotes a braita that says one shouldn't bring the "table" out until after kiddush because, according to the Shi'iltot (#54), we want to show that the kiddush is defining the meal. Tosafot there ...


14

The Rema 139:11 says To say Chazak from the passuk in Yehoshua that says Chazak vametz .The passuk before it says that Torah should not leave your mouth and it will be a blessing for you. So there are those who say Chazak u'baruch and others answer Chazak vametz. The Kaf Hachaim 139:56 brings down the minhag to say Chazak U'baruch from this Rema.


14

Nitey Gavriel (Hilchos Sukkos pg. 378) quotes the Shu"t Zakan Aharon (OC 30) who proves from the Gemorah (see below) that Lechatchila one should not reuse another's Hoshanos. He (Nitey Gavriel) suggests that doing so is considered shameful to the custom of the Nevi'im of hitting the Arovos, and that since there are allusions to judgment and severity it is ...


14

Rav Shmuel Kamenetsky writes on page 129 of Kovetz Halchos that a woman is obligated to drink a rivies of wine on Purim, and that she can fulfil this obligation with grape juice (see footnote 231). In footnote 230, he holds that since women are obligated in all the mitzvos of the day, they are also obligated to drink a little wine, but to drink a lot of ...


14

This is in the Ramo (O.C. 585:2) to blow specifically on the right side of the mouth. The Magain Avraham says this is based on the verse (Zecharia 3:1) והשטן עומד על ימינו - the Satan stands on his right side.


14

On chabad.org it says the following: On the way out of the cemetery, it is customary to pull out some grass, throw it back over the shoulder, and recite the passage below. This symbolizes the Resurrection of the Dead in the era of Moshiach, when the body will awaken and return from the dust of the earth, as it is written, "And may they blossom out ...


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