Inaccurate things we learned as kids

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  • #603882

    RabbiRabin
    Member

    I’m trying to compile a list of things that teachers / adults taught us when we were kids on which they missed the boat. The following are some examples. (if you have a mekor for anyone of these I’d love to hear it)

    When we open the door on seder night we are opening it up for Eliyahu hanavi

    You are not allowed to touch muktzah items on shabbos.

    If a woman drinks from the wine of havdalah she will grow a beard.

    You are not permitted to say lashon harah about yourself.

    (I know the story of the Chofetz Chaim)

    If you walk over someone they will cease growing unless you walk back over them.

    #1222326

    shlishi
    Member

    These are true things.

    You’re teachers were correct and you are wrong.

    #1222327

    Poster
    Member

    In other words you are looking for well known and believed myths or bubba myses (in yiddish). why blame this on teachers? I don’t recall learning in school that ‘If you walk over someone they will cease growing unless you walk back over them’ the type of thing u heard from ur kid brother…..

    #1222328

    Chortkov
    Participant

    Shlishi – “These are true things.”

    Is that so?

    The Head of Shechita in Cape Town has a letter from R’ Elyashiv saying that you may shecht giraffe, and he has done so over Pesach a few years ago.

    “When we open the door on seder night we are opening it up for Eliyahu hanavi”

    Although there are sources that Eliyahu Hanavi comes to every Seder (sources only within the last few hundred years, not earlier), he certainly does not drink from the Kos shel Eliyahu Hanavi, and we open the door to symbolize ‘Leil Shimurim’ and ‘Cherus’ of not barricading yuorselves away in fear of Goyim. Nothing to do with Eliyahu Hanavi.

    “You are not allowed to touch muktzah items on shabbos.”

    The issur muktzah is to move, not to touch.

    “If a woman drinks from the wine of havdalah she will grow a beard.”

    I’m not going to bother – find a source for that or a story that happened to somebody you know. Complete trash.#

    “You are not permitted to say lashon harah about yourself.”

    There is a big controversy about this – the story mentioned above clearly indicates that it is wrong. But as they say – i am Mochel me, so why not (:-), not seriously. If it is assur, being mochel yourself won’t help)

    “If you walk over someone they will cease growing unless you walk back over them”

    i cannot say this is untrue, because i don’t know. But for you to say ‘They are true’, Mr Shlishi, can you find me a source for that?

    #1222329

    RabbiRabin
    Member

    shlishi- that is exactly my point you think these things are true as do most people but they are not look them up.

    Giraffe has a huge neck and there isnt some minuscule place to shecht an animal. you have much more room on a giraffe

    o See Shulchan Aruch Yoreh Deah Siman 20

    we open the door at the seder to show it is leil shimurim and that we are trust in hashem and not in our door

    o See Shulchan Aruch Aruch Chaim Siman 480 Sif 2

    muktzah items are forbidden from being moved not touched

    woman beard thing

    I would love if you could find anyhting on that

    Lashon harah about yourself Chofetz Chaim never said it and the story has too many holes to be true.

    walking over someone is simply a wivetale

    #1222330

    jbaldy22
    Member

    You won’t be able to survive in the real world unless you learn how to write in cursive.

    @rabbirabin was never quite sure where they got the stuff about the giraffes but at least it gives kashrus speakers an easy opening line which they always seem to take.

    #1222331

    RabbiRabin
    Member

    You are right i think we should call this topic “Jewish Urban Legends”

    #1222332

    yeshivasem
    Member

    Some others

    If you look at the hands of the kohanim while they are duchening you will go blind.

    The Kosel is the last remaining wall of the Beis Hamikdash.

    #1222333

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    he certainly does not drink from the Kos shel Eliyahu Hanavi

    The OP didn’t mention that.

    #1222334

    shlishi
    Member

    I didn’t necessarily mean everything listed in the OP is correct. (I also wonder if his teachers really told him *all* those things.) But he threw in true things on his list. For example, Rav Chaim Kanievsky shlit”a writes in his Seforim to not step over a child. And spare us the drivel about the last few hundred years. If the Achronim tell us something (i.e. Eliyahu Hanavi at the Seder, women shouldn’t drink havdala wine [nothing to do with growing a beard though], etc.), they didn’t invent it. It comes from our Mesorah all the way back. Even if the earliest Sefer YOU found is “only within the last few hundred years”.

    And even if another Achron disagrees with a certain concept, a teacher can teach something as a fact based on another valid source (i.e. an Achron) cites it as factual.

    #1222335

    oomis
    Participant

    We cannot look at Kohanim during duchenin because the Shechinah is there. Giraffe’s have a carotid artery like every other kosher animal. Find it and it may be shechted (I would not attempt this trick at home and one would need a VERY big ladder).

    The woman/beard thing I actually have heard, as well as sniffing the havdalah candle after it is extinguished is a segulah for your memory (something I do, but I forget where I heard that…).

    We never touch muktzah items on Shabbos for FEAR of moving them. But I also never leaned against a car on Shabbos, either, and I see Yeshivish people do it all the time. They also let their kids ride trikes on Shabbos, something I personally never allowed my kids to do, for chinuch purposes. Go figure.

    #1222336

    PBT
    Member

    That the moon has no gravity. And that’s exactly what I was told before the moonlanding, and children’s videos etc. are still saying it 40 years after the moonlandings. I’ve never been able to understand why teachers and children’s videos can’t say the moon has less gravity than earth. They might not understand a fraction like 1/6, but any child can understand “more” or “less,” as any child will prove when calling our attention to that they got “more” or “less” of something than their siblings.

    Also, my daughter was told that people in Australia are upside down. The truth is that it was a shaila put to HaRov Tzvi Pesach Frank as to how the lulav should be held during Succos when in the Southern Hemisphere.

    #1222337

    takahmamash
    Participant

    That the moon has no gravity. And that’s exactly what I was told before the moonlanding, and children’s videos etc. are still saying it 40 years after the moon landings.

    There were no moon landings. It was staged in the Nevada desert. I saw a video about it on YouTube.

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    (That’s a joke, by the way.)

    #1222338

    Feif Un
    Participant

    I was told that anyone who goes to college is a sheigitz by my 6th grade Rebbe. I went home that night and told both my parents what my Rebbe said about them (I didn’t know about Roshei Yeshivos such as R’ Hutner back then who had gone to college).

    When I was 19, the Rosh Yeshiva of the yeshiva I was in at the time told me that if I left the yeshiva and went to college, I was throwing my life away, and there was no way to stay frum in college.

    It turns out he was partially right on that one. While in school, he actually contacted me to encourage me to leave, saying I was only harming myself. I decided that if I was doomed anyway, I might as well enjoy myself on the way. Only later (while still in college!) did I decide that despite everything I was taught, he was probably wrong. That was when I became frum again.

    Those are a few examples of things I was taught that were wrong.

    #1222339

    Sam2
    Participant

    When you start Shmoneh Esrei you take three steps back then three steps forward during the Passuk “Hashem S’fasai Siftach” (doing this is walking during Shmoneh Esrei; the three steps forward should finish before that).

    That you need to eat Mezonos to count for a Mezuman (anything but water is fine).

    That it’s Assur for kids to run around on Shabbos (see O.C. 301:2).

    That even if you don’t clap on Shabbos that you’re allowed to clap with one hand backwards (see O.C. 337 or 339, around there somewhere, and look at the Lashon of the Shulchan Aruch very, very carefully).

    #1222340

    ha ha ha ha
    Member

    we don’t eat giraffes since they’re very expensive… 🙂

    #1222341

    RabbiRabin
    Member

    Shlishi- i love the R’ Chaim writes in his seforim bit. Which sefer has he written on this topic i would love to see it. as a matter of fact i am sending someone to him tomorrow to ask the mekor on all of these things.

    There is no question eliyahu hanavi comes to the Seder (that was never up for discussion) we know he comes but we don’t open the door for him.

    As for women drinking from havdalah I’ve never seen it. Just because i heard it doesn’t mean there is a mekor.

    #1222342

    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    When I was in ninth grade, I was a bit heavier than the average kid.

    One day in class, I mentioned that I skipped dessert by the Shabbos meal since it was fattening and I truly didn’t need it.

    My rebbi at the time spent the next ten minutes of class time berating me publicly for “dieting on Shabbos” and not having any respect for the concept of oneg on Shabbos. One does not diet on Shabbos, he told us firmly.

    Mind you, I was not even on a formal diet. All I did was skip a piece of cake that I recognized wouldn’t help my weight. But that didn’t matter — for this terrible action, I was subject to public humiliation in front of the entire class.

    Needless to say, my rebbi was dead wrong. There is nothing wrong with skipping a piece of cake on Shabbos.

    The Wolf

    #1222344

    Sam2
    Participant

    RabbiR: As far as I know, R’ Chaim doesn’t say anything about it, but someone in a thread a few months back posted a Makor in the Be’er Moshe about it. Of course, he didn’t have a source and he said that we should be careful about it because the Minhag is to be careful about it. So it’s kind of circular.

    #1222345

    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    That Eretz Yisroel has a higher elevation than Mt. Everest because EY is higher than all other lands.

    That no one since Moshe Rabbeinu can live to 120 years.

    That all non-Jews *know* that our religion is the correct one, except that they are too stubborn/proud/obstinate to admit it. They would rather purposely follow a religion they know to be false.

    The Wolf

    #1222346

    lakewhut
    Participant

    We don’t wear techeiles because we don’t know the exact animal. Some say it’s from a fish.

    #1222347

    ☕️coffee addict
    Participant

    When we open the door on seder night we are opening it up for Eliyahu hanavi

    I actually know of a chashuva family that has someone dress up as a “ghost” (Eliyahu Hanavi) right before Shfoch Chamascha

    You are not permitted to say lashon harah about yourself.

    (I know the story of the Chofetz Chaim)

    I actually heard that the story was made up

    #1222348

    commonsense
    Participant

    My daughters were told the translation for ‘Isha Zona’ in Yehoshua was ‘Isha shemocheres mazon’ which means one who sells food. Also, we learned the metric system in elementary school because the US was going to switch over. (I know, I’m dating myself). It’s a good thing they never did because I never got the hang of it.

    #1222349

    oomis
    Participant

    “Needless to say, my rebbi was dead wrong. There is nothing wrong with skipping a piece of cake on Shabbos.”

    If I baked it, yes there is! :p

    This brings to mind the other urban legend I was told. “You CANNOT gain weight from anything you eat for oneg Shabbos.” Yeah, sure… I guess my scale didn’t go to that shiur.

    #1222350

    pcoz
    Member

    the teachers are chayav misah!

    the gemara says that when dovid’s only killed the male amalekim becuase his teacher taught him timcheh es zachar amalek – dovid hamelech said to the general’s teacher – arur oseh meleches hashem remiyah vearur moneah charboh midam, ika de’amri katlei (dovid hamelech killed the teacher) veika de’amri lo katlei

    #1222351

    brotherofurs
    Participant

    ye iv’ve heard a lot of these… i also heard when i was younger that you have to put two foods with different berachot in the mishloach manot when really you just have to pput two different types of food

    #1222352

    golfer
    Participant

    Please see Yehoshua, 2nd perek, where Rashi translates “zonah” as “mocheres minei mezonos” & Metzudas Zion says “mocheres mazon.” The teacher was correct.

    #1222353

    jbaldy22
    Member

    @commonsense both rashi and mitzudas tziyon translate its as pondakita mocheres minei mazon or mocherez mazon.

    #1222354

    pcoz
    Member

    Funny thing, I had it the other way round. I told the other kids in my class it meant an inn-keeper (following the metzudos) and they didn’t believe me

    #1222355

    pcoz
    Member

    although I think the gemara is keneged the metzudos becuase the gemara explains lo kom ruach be’ish since krias yam suf means no-one frequented that establishment

    #1222357

    ItcheSrulik
    Member

    golfer: You imply that Rashi is the pasuk. He is not. The gemara darshens the pasuk using the word “zona” k’mashma’o when talking about the power of teshuva. I believe Rashi gets it from targum but I’d have to check.

    #1222358

    Chortkov
    Participant

    shlishi: I didn’t mean to say that it has no mekor – the earliest mekor as far as i can remember is R’ Ahron from Belz. In the Hagodos it says to say ‘BORUCH HABA’ when you open the door. A good YEKKE like me doesn’t say such things (Seriously, it is not our minhag to say it.)

    RabbiRAbin – R’ Chaim KAnievsky wrote a sefer about the things which causes one to forget his torah, which are bought all over in Halocho. It probably comes in there.

    There is no question eliyahu hanavi comes to the Seder (that was never up for discussion) —:> Where is your mekor???

    Commonsense – although the Gemoro clearly says isho zonah means something other than food-distributer. I heard from one of my Rebbes to reconcile the two translations: that in the olden days, a zonah would have an inn, using it to cover up for any alternative definitions.

    #1222359

    Chortkov
    Participant

    Living over 120 – my favourite one. WHen people say ‘ad meoh ve’esrim shonoh’ i always say ‘un veite’ (and more). Somebody once said – “No, first do 120 and come back if you still want more. i doubt you will”.

    #1222360

    Chortkov
    Participant

    We don’t wear techeiles because we don’t know the exact animal. Some say it’s from a fish.

    –> The Brisker Rov said that we don’t know the exact animal, and if we think we do it is no reason to wear it: No mesorah means no Mesorah. And nobody does things without Mesorah…

    #1222361

    theywnreader
    Participant
    #1222362

    theywnreader: I dare you to buy a pomegranite and count the seeds.

    #1222363

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    Ain Simcha Aleh Yayyim , Bsar and Daggim

    I personally dislike Challah (Not much of a Bread eater except for Bagels (MUST be Fresh with doughey inside) , Wine it depends on the Kind, I hate “Traditional Kosher Wine (Concord Grape, Malaga)” and I hate Gefilte Fish from the Jar and barely tolerate Gefilte fish from the roll. (Only Drowining it in Horseradish makes it tolerable and then only if I am STARVING) and dont get me started on Herring (YEECCHHH!!!!)

    #1222364

    theywnreader
    Participant

    moskidoodle: I did count one when I was about 10 years old. Don’t go off the derech over this, even though it’s our “mesorah” since kindergarten that it’s exactly 613 . I’ve shocked quite a few people over this and they are b”h still frum.

    #1222366

    Shopping613 🌠
    Participant

    My friends brother does that every year! Hes never found 613 though. But he has found out why every yearned he comes out with an empty pomegranate and a red shirt!

    #1222367

    dd
    Member

    I did count the seeds of a pomegranate. There were about 500.

    Must be nishtaneh hateva.

    #1222368

    Feif Un
    Participant

    moskidoodle: When my mother was a teacher, she actually did that with her class! They counted 5 or 6 pomegranates. None of them had 613 seeds.

    #1222369

    Kozov
    Member

    Pomegranates from different places have different numbers of seeds. But some goy did a count over a large variety and large amount of pomegranates and the average was 613! If you see there if you count the 1000 seed pomegranates you can throw the average off balance but its still very interesting that when he stopped counting that was the number. Said he would but hasn’t updated since that count. Don’t know if that’s what was meant by the elusive makor. Search “613 seeds” fifth entry.

    #1222370

    Ima2many
    Member

    Let’s set the record straight

    Country Sample Size min #seeds max #seeds avg #seeds min weight (g) max weight (g) avg weight (g)

    US 150 286 1370 680 145 1065 421

    Singapore 2 339 579 459 250 400 325

    Iran 37 165 1263 338 200 660 354

    Spain 2 580 837 709 280 330 305

    Turkey 12 267 971 576 226 1001 603

    Brazil 3 647 1054 809 568 658 599

    All 206 165 1370 613 145 1065 420

    Table 1.1: Pomegranate Statistics (download the data file for a complete listing of each pomegranate)

    #1222371

    Chortkov
    Participant

    Our teachers always told us the part of the ????? ????? was that every building they built in Pisom and Ramses fell because it was quicksand. Another example of ignorance…

    #1222372

    aimhabonim
    Participant

    Yekke2: I’m not sure who’s being ignorant.The mekor for this is in Gemora Sotah,Daf 11a.”Why was it called Ramses? Because it would crumble(misroses)…And why was it called Pisom? Because “pi t’hom bol’o”,the mouth of the depths would swallow it.” Rashi says that whatever they built would sink into the ground. Now whether that means quicksand, small earthquakes,unstable ground, I don’t know. But just because you didn’t know, please don’t assume ignorace on the part of teachers.

    #1222373

    Feif Un
    Participant

    Ima2many: I saw the study, and it is flawed. He gets his 613 number on a weighted average of his sample size. However, almost 73% of his pomegranates were from the US! You need to represent the actual distribution of pomegranates in the sample size in order to get a real estimate.

    As for a source, I’ve heard the Malbim says a pomegranate has 613 seeds.

    #1222374

    BaalHabooze
    Participant

    Ahhh, Morah Torah! I always dreaded finding out all those things our Morah taught was false all along! That must be why there are so many kollelim – to learn everything all over again, this time with the correct pshat…

    My daughter came home one day this year (3rd grade), just before Purim, and i discussed the Purim story with her. When we got to the part about Vashti growing a tail, she told me her Morah taught that it is just a moshul and it wasn’t really a tail…

    :0

    (a moshul? really? not in MY gemorah!)

    #1222375

    Toi
    Participant

    My teachers after lunch would tell us that we could only be happy if we went to university and made lots of money. they were pretty dumb.

    #1222376

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    If you dont learn this Gemora properly you will become a truck driver!!!!

    You dont want to be a truck driver do you?

    #1222378

    yaff80
    Participant

    BaalHabooze:

    Did it ever cross your mind, that perhaps the teacher had said it was a medrash but your grade 3 daughter confused it with Mashul?

    ?? ??? ???? is not voluntary – its a ????

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