Bishul Yisroel, Pas Yisroel, Cholov Yisroel

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    Old man – Your opinion?


    The bottom line is that we have no Sfek Sfeika without at least 50% Heter in at least one of the Sfeikos, and in your case we have neither. Additionally, imports are Sheim Echad, as the Chochmas Adam writes.

    old man

    My opinion? Thanks for the compliment.

    I have a very different approach towards this issue and many others. I often try to view psak halachah from a historical or sociological point of view (by the way, I am neither a historian nor a sociologist by profession). To me it is obvious that most piskei halachah are decided by the posek by intuition, experience and necessity. The real posek cuts through immediately to the core of the issue and decides intuitively. The rest of the tshuva is culling sources to support his decision and refute the opposing views.In most cases, the posek could have easily reversed his psak and still find halachic justification. This is most apparent with the question of agunos, where the need for a heter is most pressing. There are many other examples of course.

    I greatly appreciate the shakla v’tarya here regarding the validity of sfek sfeika, and the discussion contributes much to l’hagdil torah. It is relevant to psak when an individual is faced with a decision as to whether a given product may be eaten at a given meal. However, when setting public halachic policy, that is, creating a “chodosh-free” food company, or setting up guidelines for large institutions (schools, yeshivas, kosher supermarket chains, even the OU), the issue of sfek sfeka becomes irrelevant. The psak will be given depending on public need or facts on the public ground. This is what the Bach did. If current day poskim think it’s too diffcult to keep yoshon, they will point to the Bach, and that’s fine. The Bach saw a situation where almost all ate chodosh and he set out purposefully to justify it. He was so successful that his heter was accepted for many generations. Now that we can verify (can we?) where our produce comes from and when, I think that a yoshon vadai enterprise should be supported. This is nothing new. Much lighter issues like cholov stam, non-glatt meat and imperfect hadassim have morphed into full blown taboos only because of the easy availablility of the shufra deshufra of these products. How many of us tolerate non-glatt meat? Hardly any. Is non-glatt meat kosher? Absolutely. Why should chodosh be any different if it is procurable? Yes, if someone is stuck in yenimsveldt and has to eat, pull out all those sfek sfeikas and make a decision. But if yoshon is easily available in Monsey or Lakewood, I think one should make the utmost effort to get it. Sometimes old heterim die hard.

    On the same note, I think my thoughts here are applicable to other areas such as tcheiles (yes), horseradish maror (no),and a few other issues.


    old man: What do you mean by “intuition”? Same with “historical”. Please elaborate.

    And if “sociological” factors are part of the psak, the psak would make clear what “sociological factors” it is taking into account. In the absence of such a disclaimer, it can be assumed it isn’t at play.

    old man

    I think everyone knows what intuition means. For a psak, it translates into giving an answer without looking anything up or running all the relevant sources through one’s head before answering. I know of great poskim who acknowledged that they pasken this way. I won’t give their names.

    Historical factors. I’ll give two examples. After the Chmielnitzki y”s massacres (1648-9), the rabbonim got together and devised ways to be mattir as many agunos as possible. If one reads of these massacres (Nasan Hanover in Yven Metzulah, Yaffa Eliach in There Once was a World, etc…) one will understand the importance of history in psak. Same for sociological factors in this case. One can only imagine the pain and agony of the agunah who pleads her case in front of the Rav, who is suffering himself no less. Do these factors affect psak halachah? Absolutely.

    Second case. The Chasam Sofer is famous for increasing the level of issur for certain issues due to his battle with the Reform movement. One has to read the history books to fully understand this movement, and I mean from both sides of the coin. The sociological factors in the Chasam Sofer’s decisions are obvious. Issues like bris milah, halanas hames, all needed to be considered according to the social attitudes of the times.

    I would say that almost all psak has sociological factors built in without them having to be spelled out. In our days, can anyone deny that Internet use and its’ permissibility or non-permissibility is at least partially decided by sociological factors? Or college and secular studies? Or b’nei chutz la’aretz making a public yom tov minyan in Israel when everyone else is putting on tefillin and going to work? That’s what I mean.


    hello99 – You can’t have it both ways. The Rema doesn’t hold of Rov – Noiegia Sfek Sfeka -YD 110 SK 4 at the end. The Shach #23 says “the Mechaber since Kavuah is a Chidush it’s worse than Taaruvos and when it gets mixed up after that we go AFTER ROV And it’s Mutter”. And the Rema says this is “Ossur because there isn’t a Sfek Sfeka”. What happenned to the Rov? You also see later on – #8 that on a Sofek Vaday Issur you don’t look at the Rov, except on sofek Sofek Issur. Why not?

    I say because the Rema looks at the Din of Rov separate from the Din of Sfek Sfeka. So he won’t hold Rov is Matter, so similary he won’t hold Rov is Assuring like by Dogon. So what does he mention Rov for by Hilchos Chodosh? Answer – Not to Assur the pile, but to tell us if the Safek is a good Safek to be used in the Sfek Sfeka!

    This is the way I’m learning.

    “Additionally, imports are Sheim Echad, as the Chochmas Adam writes.”

    Even so, you still have Dogon here from last year. That makes TWO Sfekos – 1. Is the Dogon you’re eating from this year or last (Could be Yoshon)? 2. Even if from this year maybe from imported (Also could be Yoshon)?


    old man -“I think that a yoshon vadai enterprise should be supported.”

    How much did these corporations pay you for this statement?

    “This is nothing new. Much lighter issues like cholov stam, non-glatt meat and imperfect hadassim have morphed into full blown taboos”

    Sorry -I’m not Makpid on Cholov Yisroel. My Minhag is to be Makpid on Glatt, but I heard 80 -90% what they call Glatt isn’t. So -Oh well.

    Hadassim -I’ve never really seen bad ones, but maybe there are. Now Aravos I see e/o using those with Teiglach; I thought you were supposed to avoid those. I try to, at least.


    Health: let me try to resolve some of your confusion.

    Again we do not have that here. Last year is a minority, and certainly imports are a small minority. Therefore, there is no Sfek Sfeika today for Chadash.


    He does and I’ll quote -“If not that the doors of the country aren’t locked and Rov of the Tevuah comes from a place where they plant before Pesach”.

    Regarding the Chochmas Odom, one day when I’ll have the time BE’H I’ll look it up. Also, I did have a point about Rov from 110:4, but you didn’t Chap. I’m not going to explain it because these last two things are moot, because of the following:

    In my first line, I quoted the Rema about imports and I really didn’t understand what he was saying. So I decided to look it up.

    Here is the quote from the Hagous Maimonous:

    “That Chodosh is Ossur in Chutz L’aretz, but from a Safek we should Not Assur since most grains are planted & rooted before the Omer. And in “Nodemendeya” most plant Shebolas Shuel (oats) after Pesach and even so – since the doors of the country aren’t locked (Imports) and they can bring in from Tzorfas, where most are planted before Pesach, it’s Mutter. But my Rebbe was Machmir on Barley because there are those that are planted right after Pesach or right before. But even acc. to this Chumra etc…”

    IMH’O all the imports of this country will mostly be Yoshon. Some because they were planted before Pesach and some because of the time delay getting it to your table.

    He says Klor that the Rov of the Oats was Chodosh and the imports were mostly Yoshon. I highly doubt the imports of that country was more than what the country itself produced and even so he says it’s Mutter.

    I don’t know where the Rema above got Rov from -either it’s a printing mistake or they argue.

    IMH’O the US is better than that case because not only do we import all of the 5 grains from elsewhere, we also have a surplus every year which is most likely Yoshon!

    I know you will never agree with this, but this is what I feel is the Din. (Stam grain is Mutter in the US.)

    And I feel now that this topic is closed!


    Health: good to hear from you.

    If you read the Rema carefully all your issues are resolved.

    This is precisely the situation in the USA the past 40 years.

    Thank you very much for pointing out this addition from the Rema, which so conclusively proves my point.


    Hello99 -If you want to say the Rema argues on the Hagahos Maimonous, that’s fine.

    But to imply that the Rema held this to be Pshat in them or they themselves held this way is misleading to say the least!

    The Quote from them which I translated above I’ll repeat in Hebrew – “Vyachol Lovoh Shom Mezorphas Sherubon etc.” Translation – “And since it can come from France which is mostly Yoshon it’s Mutter”. If they held that Rov of the oats had to be from France because there it’s mostly Yoshon, they never would have left it out. You don’t say “since it could from” which implies just a possibility, when there is a need to not only come from there, but that has to become the Rov over here.

    I personally think that this was a mistake in the printing in YD 293. I told you that the Rema doesn’t mix Rov with Sfek Sfeka from YD 110:4. So he doesn’t have to hold Rov over here in the Dinim of Chodosh.

    I don’t expect you to agree, but at least realize you are pushing a round peg in a square hole when it comes to the Hagahos Maimonous!


    Health: Frankly, no I cannot accept what you are saying. Rule #33 stipulates that a Safek only counts if there is at least a 50% probability of Heter. The only debate among the Poskim in this regard relates to the question if both Sfeikos require this or it is sufficient to have one at least 50% likely to be Muttar and the second can be less. The rule itself is accepted unanimously.

    Logic also dictates that this must be so. Is we would have two Sfeikos each with an 80% probability of Issur, we would be left with an overwhelming likelihood of Issur, how could we imagine this would be Muttar.

    No Rishon or Acharon ever proposed that Chodosh should be an exception, and there would be no logical reason to do so. In fact, as I pointed out, the Rema and Shach in 293 clearly apply this principle to Chodosh as well.


    My interest isn’t to help you understand the Heterem, but to just let e/o know there is one. I do know the Rema brings down a Heter because of Sfek Sfeka. I also know the Chay Odom brings down the same Heter and says it’s because of Rov. Whatever the reason it’s Mutter is irrevelant. The fact is Both Pasken it’s Mutter. You decided that Chodosh has to fit into all the Dinim of Sfek Sfeka. I don’t have such a hang up. All I know -what they say is Mutter- is Mutter!

    Don’t call it my Chiddush or Diyuk because there is a big difference between a Diyuk and something he says right out.

    He says right out if there is a chance that the imports are mostly Yoshon, then we don’t care about the fact that the home grown stuff is mostly Chodosh. And this is the case in the US today!

    And the reason there is a mistake in the Rema is because he brought this Shitta down as a Heter, not to argue on it. If he wanted to bring down a Shitta to argue -he would have a whole Areichos. I think some Printer moved the word Rov in the SA because it didn’t make sense to him what the Hagahos Maimonous was saying -so he shortened it, on a whim!


    When the majority of the crop grows after Pesach, he brings a second Heter to use imports as the second Safek. He unequivocally specifies that this second Heter also requires a majority, and in lieu of that it will not apply. Again this majority does not exist today in the USA.

    So, the Rema bring two potential Heteirim for Chodosh, and stipulates that both of them require at least one Safek to be 50-50. When that does not exist, he would clearly concede that there is NO Heter. That is precisely the case in the USA today.

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