11 votes
Accepted

What should you do if you accidentally talk between Al Netilas Yadayim and Hamotzi?

Even according to the custom of avoiding interrupting between washing and the blessing of HaMotzi, one need not wash again if one spoke or otherwise interrupted as long as the person remained mindful ...
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  • 16.2k
11 votes

How can one kill the habit of speaking profanity?

Just a suggestion, but one which worked for me -- when I got married I thought to myself, "would it be appropriate for a 1 year old to have his or her first words be curses?" Children imprint on the ...
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  • 36.5k
11 votes
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Things that come from the heart

The source is Moshe Ibn Ezra (1055-1140, not to be confused with the better known R. Avraham Ibn Ezra), in his sefer Shirat Yisroel. The footnote in the edition linked here1 says that his source was ...
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  • 18.2k
9 votes

Snakes talking?

It's pretty hard to ask any questions from the first two chapters of Genesis, considering both the esoteric nature of both the topic and the fact that the world seems to have rather different back ...
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9 votes
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What does it mean to take God's name in vain?

The 3rd commandment is not to take a pointless oath in G-d's name (e.g. swearing that a table is a table, and other pointless oaths, see ch 1) as is codified by Rambam (Hilchos Shvuos) and Sefer ...
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  • 7,400
9 votes

Can you say kaddish if some of the 10 people in the minyan are forbidden from answering?

The Kitzur Shulchan Aruch in סימן טו - דיני קדיש וברכו וצרוף עשרה says that as long as there are at least 6 people actually answering, you may say Kaddish, as long as there are 10 adult males above ...
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9 votes

How can one kill the habit of speaking profanity?

While I do not in anyway meant to minimize the difficulty of removing profanity from one's vocabulary (or the effort of those who have been successful), it may be helpful to recall that if you have ...
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  • 13.1k
9 votes

Are there examples in Tanach of 3 or more parties having an ongoing conversation?

In Jeremiah 26 there is a conversation involving six different named parties: Jeremiah speaks to the nation, the priests and the prophets The nation, the priests, and the prophets respond The princes ...
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  • 23.8k
8 votes

talking after washing

The Talmud (Berakhot 42a) states that there are three things done immediately. One of them is: תכף לנטילת ידים ברכה Immediately [after] washing one's hand, blessing. The Tur (OH 166) writes ...
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  • 34.8k
8 votes
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Emotional distress with the overly sensitive

The Gemara in Bava Metzia (59a), in dealing with the prohibition of causing anguish - Onas Devarim, says that it is imperative to speak to ones wife nicely, for they cry very easily. אמר רב לעולם ...
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8 votes

Speaking lashon hara about someone who does not mind

See the Chafetz Chaim in Shmiras Halashon (חלק ב' פרק יח): פָּרָשַׁת בְּהַעֲלֹתְךָ ''וַתְּדַבֵּר מִרְיָם וְאַהֲרֹן בְּמֹשֶה עַל אוֹדוֹת'' וְגוֹ' {במדבר י''ב א'}. מִפָּרָשָׁה זוֹ אָנוּ לְמֵדִים ...
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8 votes
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Earliest Sources To Avoid Pronouncing the Name 'Samael'

Rav Shmuel Vital (17th century) in the siddur חמדת ישראל says this. גם צריך להזהר מאד שלא להזכיר בפיו שם סמא"ל וזהו סוד מש"ה אלהים אחרים לא תזכירו וכו' ובפרט בלילה שאז היא שליטתו וממשלתו.ולא עוד ...
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  • 1,693
8 votes
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Using hebrew as a day-to-day language

Is there an argument against this prohibition? It contradicts an explicit Gemara in Shabbat 40b: "והאמר אביי "דברים של חול מותר לאומרן בלשון קודש, של קודש אסור לאומרן בלשון חול To which Rashi ...
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8 votes
Accepted

What happens with the blessings if a mute is called for a Torah aliyah?

Peri Megadim (OC 140 MZ 2) writes that perhaps if the mute is an extremely important person ("אדם חשוב גדול הדור") we can be lenient to allow others to say the blessing for him through Shomea' KeOneh, ...
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  • 95.1k
8 votes
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Reading Shna'yim mikrah vi'echad targum aloud

R. Moshe Sternbauch addresses this in his Teshuvot V'hanahagot (Vol. IV #73): והנה לכאורה פשוט דתרגום אונקלוס צריך לקרוא בפיו דוקא ולא מספיק בהרהור, ולפ"ז אולי גם כשלומד רש"י לתרגום הדין כן, שיש ...
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  • 34.8k
8 votes
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Does Jewish law have a clear position on freedom of speech?

One who blasphemes G-d is executed. Mishne Torah, Avodas Kochavim, 2:7 A Jewish king may execute someone for speaking against him (rebellion against the monarch). Mishneh Torah, Melachim 3:8 One who ...
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7 votes

How can one kill the habit of speaking profanity?

I would start by picking a window of time, maybe 30 min, maybe 15, where you can stay conscious and in control of what I am saying. "From 6 to 6:30 pm, I will not speak nivul peh." After a week, ...
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  • 8,660
7 votes
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Why do we consider Eisav's nachas goyish if Eisav was a Jew?

The question is predicated on a joke which you missed or which wasn't properly explained. One of the grandsons of Esav was named Nachas, as we see in Bereishit 36:13: וְאֵלֶּה בְּנֵי רְעוּאֵל, נַחַת ...
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6 votes

the aggadic concept of a finite number of words to speak

Derech Pikudecha (Bnei Yisoschor)- page 162 - paragraph starting with Gimel says that one has a limit on the amount of words in his lifetime and if he speaks too much is shortening his life. קיבלנו ...
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6 votes

Loshon hara to a therapist

The Chofetz Chaim writes in a note to the fifth detail of permissible Lashon Hara in Hilchos Lashon Hara 10:14 אפשר דהוא הדין אם כוונתו בסיפורו להפיג את דאגתו מלבו - הוי כמכוון לתועלת על להבא, [ולפי ...
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6 votes
Accepted

Is it forbidden to count Jewish people without uttering any words?

The OU quotes "the Kaf Hachaim (13:10) writes that one is permitted to count Jewish People in one’s mind (b’machshava), as long as he does not count them audibly." This is referring to the ...
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  • 12.4k
6 votes

How to approach saying divrei torah at the shabbos table

By talking about something really interesting that applies to your crowd. Know your audience is rule #1. NOTE Some people will tune out easily when hearing a regular scholarly vort on the Parshah or ...
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  • 10.3k
6 votes

Things that come from the heart

This site says the source is a mystery. Despite the fact that it is oft cited as "Chazal say", neither the Mishanah nor Talmud cite this phrase anywhere. The writer surmises: that the phrase is an ...
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  • 68.7k
6 votes

5th part of the shulchan aruch

According to Jewish historian Joseph Telushkin in his A Code of Jewish Ethics, Volume 1, this description is attributed to Rabbi Chaim Soloveitchik, an early twentieth century Rabbi. The story is ...
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  • 4,253
6 votes
Accepted

Don't have to articulate hataras nedarim?

The barebone Halacha is in Yoreh De'ah 228 - סימן רכח - דיני התרת נדרים - where it says that all that the 3 people need to say is מֻתָּר לָךְ - preferably thrice. So I'm not sure what the others ...
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6 votes

What is the best way to correct someone who has unwittingly violated halacha in public?

I have been corrected on several occasions, so I can describe what worked better or worse for me. I've tried to apply this when I'm doing the correcting (doesn't happen often), and so far it has ...
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6 votes

Not verbally spelling Hashem's names

Chayei Adam 5:27 writes the following (emphasis mine): ההוגה השם באותיותיו אין לו חלק לע"הב דהיינו שקורא השם בנקודותיו כמו שהוא נקוד היו"ד בשב"א והה"א בחולם והוא"ו בקמץ (ול&...
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  • 6,684
6 votes

Greeting other people (Jews and Non-Jews alike)

A Talmudic passage that may be relevant here: Berachot 17a מרגלא בפומיה דאביי לעולם יהא אדם ערום ביראה מענה רך משיב חמה ומרבה שלום עם אחיו ועם קרוביו ועם כל אדם ואפילו עם נכרי בשוק כדי שיהא אהוב ...
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  • 47.8k
6 votes

Saying the right thing then saying the wrong thing toch kedai dibur

Halichos Shlomo quotes Reb Shlomo Zalman Aurbach's handwritten tshuva as saying it seems that the person has fulfilled his obligation with the first counting. This is found in chapter 11 halacha 5. ...
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  • 32.2k
5 votes

How does Silence lead to wisdom

Our Sages teach that "silence is a fence for wisdom" (Avos 3:13). Rabbeinu Yonah (ibid.) mentions two ways through which silence begets wisdom. Firstly, it trains a person to avoid interrupting his ...
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  • 16.2k

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