26

Thank you for your sensitivity in asking this question. As pointed out in comments, you are actually Jewish (whether you follow Judaism or not). But as you say in your question, you've been raised with Christianity and it doesn't appear that you've rejected that. You see Judaism as part of your cultural background, if I'm reading you correctly, the way ...


20

Fascinating! I've always wondered about this myself. BaMidbar Rabbah 2:7 has a list of each tribe and its flag, with the colour, stone, and symbol associated with it, which I believe is probably the original source (or one of the earliest that we'll find) for this. I'd be interested to see what other people come up with. Interestingly, the list is a little ...


20

Likely, it is an acronym for קְהִילָה קְדוֹשָה k'hila k'dosha (lit: holy congregation), a title for Jewish communities whose use dates back to the Talmud (Tamid 27b).


17

Per Rabbi David Sperling it is not problematic to own or use a Swiss gear bag. The use of the cross - which is of course a Christian symbol - is widely discussed in halacha. When the cross is one that people bow to, or use in their worship, then there are serious halachic problems with owning such an item. However, when the cross is clearly not for ...


16

Welcome to Mi Yodeya, Frederick. The "average" Jew does not have a symbol for "evil" or the "devil," especially the latter. The "devil" is a Christian innovation shared also by Islam, and which probably owes some of its origins from pagan and other non-Christian sources such as Zoroastrianism and Manichaeism, both of which are dualistic religions. ...


15

Obviously, I can't actually speak for the family involved, however, in general, giving any kind of Christian religious symbol to a Jewish family will be considered offensive. The meaning conveyed by the cross for most Jews is very different from the meaning that Christians see in it, and not the least bit positive.


14

There is a Jewish practice to tear one's clothes when in mourning. In recent times, it has become common for non-Orthodox Jews to tear a black ribbon pinned to their clothes rather than the clothes themselves in order to avoid damaging an article of clothing. I am not sure whether using the ribbon satisfactorily fulfills the obligation according to the ...


12

Kashrut.com lists that symbol as belonging to Rabbi Mordechai Kaplinsky, in Brooklyn, NY. See there for contact information.


11

The only thing that would be offensive is if you posed as accepting the Jewish faith and then went around telling everyone that they have to believe in Jesus.


11

That's the symbol of the Vaad Hoeir of St. Louis.


11

The Atlanta Kashrus Agency does not recommend the KORC. The AKC does not recommend the KORC certification. Lettuce products with this certification have been found to have have insects and require additional washing and checking.


11

Most of the poskim deem the cross as something that Christians remember Jesus by, but not as an actual tool of worshipping. Therefore most agree that you are allowed to use it for pleasure, etc. Thus say: Terumat HaDeshen in Ra'avyah's name, the Rama, the Ritva, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef. This was taken from the following source (daily halacha based on Rabbi ...


10

Gershom Scholem has an essay entitled "The Star of David: History of a Symbol", in The Messianic Idea in Judaism (New York: Schocken Books, 1995), 257-281. In this essay, he chronicles the development of different theories that accounted for its origin (in David's shield, in Solomon's signet ring, etc), its usage in Christian and Islamic art and its frequent ...


10

Considering the opacity around the acceptability of different kashruth certification organizations in America, I don't think many people will be able to accurately answer this question. That being said, KORC appears on neither the cRc nor KosherQuest (Rabbi Eidlitz, based in California) lists of reliable hashgachot (although they of course have disclaimers ...


9

1) The Maharil explains that the apple is connected with "חקל תפוחים קדישין"; when Yaakov came to get the brochos from Yitzchok, he had the smell of an apple orchard upon his clothing. Besides for the Kabbilistic meanings, (according to one opinion) this episode happened on Rosh Hashana (GR”A O.C. 583:8) 2) There are three types of benefit derived from an ...


9

Rav Mirsky in his first volume of Hegyonei Halacha has an interesting article on Ameilah shel Torah and includes the virtues of a bear. In speaking about how important 'toil' in learning is (rather than rote learning) he brings a Radak on Hosea (13:8): .אֶפְגְּשֵׁם כְּדֹב שַׁכּוּל, וְאֶקְרַע סְגוֹר לִבָּם; וְאֹכְלֵם שָׁם כְּלָבִיא, חַיַּת הַשָּׂדֶה ...


8

Update on the stones of the hoshen / 12 Tribes, and their identification. This information is from my father's book "The Natural Bible: Judaism and the Environment", which will be published (be"h) by Berman House this spring. Odem: clearly a red stone. Scholars suggest either red jasper, or carnelian sard (a type of quartz). Piteda: some sort of yellowish-...


8

The former Chief Rabbi of Great Britain, Rabbi Israel Brodie, ob"m was a freemason. See here where it shows a picture of the Rabbi in the regalia.


8

Taamei HaMinhagim 706 says it is done for Kabalistic reasons. In the notes, he mentions in the name of the Imrei Noam that the Gematria of the word "Tapuach" (the Hebrew word for apple) is the same as the Gematria of "S'e Akeida" - so we eat the apple to recall the Akeida (Binding of Isaac).


8

I found the site I was thinking of, anyone know of any others? http://www.hechshers.info/shapes/index.htm


8

While this isn't exactly what you're looking for, it's close: the Rama's Toras Ha'Olah, which does go through just about every mitzvah/halakha in Seder Kodshim and explains the reasoning for their details in a super-cool-scientific-mystical way. It's not an encyclopedia in that it isn't in alphabetical order, but it is ordered systematically, by topic. ...


8

From: http://www.shmais.com/articles/stories/4232-a-story-of-the-rebbe-225-the-artist A non Torah-observant artist once wanted to give the [Lubavitch] Rebbe a portrait he had painted of him. However, the Rebbe noticed that the picture showed him with his fingers intertwined, and he explained to the artist in terms that he would relate to as to why we do not ...


8

Need to look up exact source of the tshuvah, but paraphrasing the Ben Ish Hai: crosses in churches (and those found inbas-relief on antique "expensive" vessels, bowls etc) are to be considered as idols and used in idol-worship. He says however crosses worn on necklaces nowadays (in his day) are not considered such and are merely decorative. He also ...


7

The Shulchan Aruch Harav says that one eats eggs to remind him to mourn the Beis Hamikdash, since had the Beis Hamikdash stood, we would have been eating the korban Pesach.


7

According to Alexander Beider's Handbook of Ashkenazic Given Names, Dov didn't become a name in "the vernacular life" until the 20th century. "Jews called Dov in Hebrew sources were actually named Ber in their everyday life." Ber, on the other hand, comes form the German Bero which has been known since the 8th century among non-Jews. Beider's theory is ...


7

Deuteronomy 33:22: וּלְדָ֣ן אָמַ֔ר דָּ֖ן גּ֣וּר אַרְיֵ֑ה יְזַנֵּ֖ק מִן־הַבָּשָֽׁן׃ And of Dan he said: Dan is a lion’s whelp That leaps forth from Bashan. Rabbeinu Bachya writes in his commentary to that pasuk: דן גור אריה. ע"ד הפשט, המשילו בגבורה לגור אריה כאשר הוא מדלג מהר בשן . דן גור אריה, וע"ד הקבלה נקרא דן כנגד מדת הדין, כי כן אמרה ...


6

The Taz (OC 473:4) suggests the reason is so that we can eat it, because it is forbidden to eat roasted meat on the Seder night. The Mishna Berura (:23) quotes two other reasons. First, that we use an egg, which is commonly served at a meal to mourners, to represent our mourning the loss of the Beit HaMikdash and the Korbanot. Second, the word for egg in ...


6

I heard in a recording of R' Akiva Tatz that it is a nice incorporation of a verse in Mishlei (3:3): כתבם על לוח לבך Write them on the tablet of your heart The curved top luchos are an interpolation of a heart onto the luchos.


6

There is no prohibition against owning idolatrous figures. However, there is a prohibition against gazing as such figures, which would in general prevent one from owning them. According to Shulchan Aruch (YD 141:1) it is permitted to gaze at an idolatrous figure that is not intended for the purpose of worship. (See Rama there who includes the cross as an ...


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