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  • in reply to: Does all Chabad agree with him??? #1807392

    rational
    Participant

    The rule is that Chabad people believe the Rebbe is Moshiach. Those who don’t proclaim it publicly still believe it privately. There may be rare exceptions to this rule, but it is the rule.

    in reply to: Fourth date ideas #1806986

    rational
    Participant

    The Siyum Hashas

    in reply to: Yiddish at Siyum hashas #1804631

    rational
    Participant

    Every Yeshiva should be teaching their talmidim Ivrit and Yiddish from an early age.

    That some in the Torah Community are arguing against Yiddish speeches at the most unifying gathering in Torah America is mind-boggling.

    Study Yiddish, know it and love it, it is priceless.

    in reply to: Important things to know before choosing camp for your daughter #1803658

    rational
    Participant

    They should stay home and do chessed.
    Do old people and young mothers who need assistance have to suffer over the long summer just so that the teenagers can have fun? Is this what it’s all about?

    in reply to: Havara or Havoroh #1801635

    rational
    Participant

    I call on ZSK to enlighten us with his expertise. I certainly won’t be offended.
    I disagree with him on one point.
    As a linguist knows, there is no such thing as an “authentic” dialect or “authentic” pronunciation. The very nature of language almost immediately produces variations.

    Also, and with utter respect, adonai is not necessarily plural.

    in reply to: Boys Learning in Eretz Yisroel #1799335

    rational
    Participant

    Dear 29
    I respect your opinion and the right to edit as you see fit.
    I’ll just add that the truth hurts, and I thought it needed to be said without pulling punches.

    in reply to: Boys Learning in Eretz Yisroel #1799159

    rational
    Participant

    Don’t send your boys to yeshiva in Israel.

    edited – there is a point where cynicism and opinion morph into hate and motzei shem ra – 29

    There are many ways to serve Hashem.

    in reply to: Making a bracha on scented menthol #1798601

    rational
    Participant

    It’s medicine, it heals congestion, and a brachah would be l’vatalah.
    The fact that it’s organic is irrelevant. So are “natural” belladonna alkaloids.

    in reply to: College, Secular Studies & Judaism #1797644

    rational
    Participant

    Rav Kessler’s speech made quite a splash here, I read the original Hebrew transcript. One of the subjects he opposes studying is English, so the English translation from the original Hebrew here is quite ironic.

    Of course, many agree with him and many do not. Of those that do not, the most common comment wondered whether the Rav was going to financially support all the families he has condemned to poverty as a result of them not studying English and arithmetic, not to mention electronics, car mechanics, etc…

    in reply to: standing in place after shmoneh esrei #1796574

    rational
    Participant

    Dear lowerourtuition

    Thank you, I stand corrected.
    I’ll add, though, that the MB reasons that it is disrespectful to take steps back and then run away, so to speak.
    The Briskers hold that one stands through chazaras hashatz, as it is a continuation of the yachid’s SE.
    Different reasoning, almost the same result.

    in reply to: Keeping the Siyum Hashas Sacred. #1796575

    rational
    Participant

    A wise man once told me, “There’s no business like Torah business”

    Promotions, marketing, caste systems, social hierarchies, and flaunting wealth are all signs of a highly successful system.

    The frum Torah world championed by Rav Aharon Kotler zt”l has been successful beyond anyone’s dreams.

    The hype is the byproduct of it, for good and bad. I think the bad outweighs the good, but obviously, I am part of an insignificant minority.

    in reply to: standing in place after shmoneh esrei #1795750

    rational
    Participant

    Some Briskers hold that the chazarat hashatz until after kedushah is a continuation of the private shmoneh esrei of the yachid, hence one should stand still till after kedushah.

    I don’t recall the Shulchan Oruch or its’ commentaries mandating that one hold by the Briskers.

    in reply to: Following Halacha #1794993

    rational
    Participant

    Thank you moderator 29
    I guess I didn’t send it out properly, I’ll try again

    in reply to: Following Halacha #1794964

    rational
    Participant

    “It is clear that before the period of the acharonim, head covering was for chachamim only.”

    For praying or other times?
    Can you provide me with a quote?

    MDG, I wrote a long piece with many quotes detailing the history of head covering. It didn’t make it through the system.
    Sorry, I tried.
    I don’t see any deleted posts from you-29

    in reply to: Following Halacha #1794788

    rational
    Participant

    in early Hassidic philosophy, as in the writings of the Magid Memezritch and others, the purpose of shuckling is to get closer to the shechinah using a specific mechanism.

    in reply to: Following Halacha #1794371

    rational
    Participant

    Considering that halachah has been around for a few thousand years or so, it is odd that it took a few thousand years minus 120 to establish that one should wear a hat and jacket when davening.
    If the earliest psak on this issue is from תר”ע, then it is a recommendation for the population in eastern Europe and nothing more. To call it a halachah L’doros, בכל מקום ובכל זמן is a bizayon to real halachos. A little serious research into halachah would help here.

    The American Yeshivish Bubble is fairly adamant that their way of dress is the only viable way. I suggest that these boys spend some time at the Koisel in Yerushalayim, stand in the back and view the numerous varieties of bona-fide God-fearing Jews who come there to daven. The variations in dress are impressive. Interestingly, the American yeshiva boy there stands out from the crowd like a sore thumb. Is his way the only way? Maybe it is on the corner of 14th St. and Laurelwood Ave. but wake up children, that location is not the epicenter of Judaism.

    As an aside, there is a book by Rav Professor Eric Zimmer, עולם כמנהגו נוהג , where he traces the history of head covering. It is clear that before the period of the acharonim, head covering was for chachamim only. To extrapolate from the Rambam that all must wear a Borsalino during davening is foolish. Apologies that the book is in Hebrew, so it’s only for the halachically literate.

    in reply to: Following Halacha #1794032

    rational
    Participant

    It’s interesting to see that as the decades go by, the yeshiva high schools still employ the “This is the way we do it, so this is the halachah” system of indoctrination. I’m not surprised , but it is unfortunate. The hat and jacket thing is particularly telling, I’ve been hearing that nonsense for over 50 years.

    Let’s wager on what percentage of boys would or would not change their attire if one minute before mincha they were informed that they are about to have a private audience with the Monarch, or a State official, or (gasp) a date with a maidel. They can go “as is” or they can shower and dress appropriately. I wager 99.99% change their clothing.

    in reply to: Maccabeem Restaurant W 47th St. #1792640

    rational
    Participant

    I took my wife there on our first date, January 1979. Followed that up with a concert at Avery Fisher Hall , heard Mozart’s Double Piano Concerto. Quite a large place (the restaurant, that is). It had a front fleishig cafeteria-style section, but if you wanted a nicer atmosphere, there was a back section where there was regular restaurant waiter service. It was quite popular because the location was terrific and the food was decent without being too expensive. I have lived in Israel for decades, so I don’t know when it closed. Oh, we ate in the back, thank you.

    in reply to: Black suits for brothers of chasson and kallah? #1792539

    rational
    Participant

    When life is too good, people occupy themselves with שטויות והבל. Life is too good in America.

    in reply to: Private Mikva for Men #1790294

    rational
    Participant

    Call yourself The Exceleh Rebbe, and tell the mikve people that “The Exceleh Rebbe is coming and would like the mikve cleared out for him for 10 minutes”

    in reply to: 10 Proofs That Moshiach is Coming Now! #1790150

    rational
    Participant

    Chugibugi, well said.
    Rebetzin Kaniefsky also promised moshiach “very very soon”. She died eight years ago.

    in reply to: Money in the garbage! #1789274

    rational
    Participant

    You choose to live a materialistic life in a materialistic neighborhood with materialistic friends in the Land of Materialism. Your wife’s gorgeous human hair sheitel and your spiffy Shabbos hat are signs of spiritual bankruptcy and not closeness to God. Wake up, it’s not too late.

    in reply to: height in shidduchim #1788039

    rational
    Participant

    It bothers you so much either because:
    1. You are trolling, or:
    2. You need serious psychotherapy

    in reply to: B’ito, or Achishena? #1788012

    rational
    Participant

    All should stay away from topics that we are incapable of understanding. The proposed variations on moshiach, how, when, and under what conditions, are mind-boggling numerous, proving my point. Do mitzvos, live in israel, and be a good person. Let HKBH do the rest, He’s reliable.

    in reply to: Best New Top Loading Washing Machine (Washer) #1788011

    rational
    Participant

    I am far from an expert on these matters, but I want to bring up the water issue.
    Washers are often designed for different mineral contents in the water, depending on the specific climate.
    That is one of the reasons that in Israel the old American Maytags did not clean clothes nearly as well as the European models that all Israelis buy.
    When after 30 years the Maytag (to p load) finally finished its journey, we bought a relatively simple, inexpensive and popular European-type washer (front load). The clothes come out much cleaner.

    in reply to: Bullying Smokers and vapers in frum velt #1788010

    rational
    Participant

    NO

    in reply to: Chosson cigarettes #1787393

    rational
    Participant

    Hard to decide which is more irrational (read silly): giving anyone cigarettes, or believing that the chosson’s friends have supernatural powers. Toss-up.

    in reply to: Dentists is Lakewood? #1787394

    rational
    Participant

    I go to dentists who spell properly and check their comments before sending them.

    in reply to: Your 21 year old son may be ready for marriage #1783739

    rational
    Participant

    “I don’t know of a single Litvish godol in the world that ever said not to get married at 18. If you know of any please advise who.”
    ” Chazal have harsh words for someone unmarried by age 21. ”

    The above are interesting statements that carry no weight.
    After some research, here are some facts:
    Age of Litvish Godol at his marriage:
    Brisker Rov : 24
    Rav Aharon Kotler: 22
    Steipler Gaon: 28
    Rav Schach: 26
    Rav Moshe Feinstein: 27
    Rav Chaim Kaniefsky: 24

    in reply to: Your 21 year old son may be ready for marriage #1783643

    rational
    Participant

    “The Brisker Rov was 16 by his engagement. Chazal have harsh words for someone unmarried by age 21. ”

    Misleading.
    The Brisker Rov married at age 24
    Rav Chaim his father married at age 20.

    in reply to: Civet coffee #1783236

    rational
    Participant

    I finished studying the comprehensive and lumdish analysis of this issue in Tehumin, volume 31, by Rav Fishman

    The issues discussed were:
    1. היוצא מן הטמא
    2. דג טהור שנבלע בדג טמא
    3. מי רגליים של חמור, גמל וסוס
    4. היתר דבש דבורים
    5. כבוש כמבושל
    6.בל תשקצו

    Most of the topics discussed in the article were mentioned here, although obviously, not in detail. All suggestions made here (personal bal t’shaktzu, changing the taste of the coffee rendering it assur, and others ) were considered, so no one was off base in our amateur discussion.

    Caveat: One can always be machmir. The question was is drinking this coffee permissible?
    The conclusion was that the coffee is kosher and there is no issur of bal t”shaktzu. Muttar.
    Even if we disagree on psak and lomdus, I venture we can all agree that this coffee is pricey.

    in reply to: Should Wedding gowns for the extended family be discontinued? #1781763

    rational
    Participant

    I find it sad that it costs $800 to rent a gown for a mechateiniste, close to the price of a good pair of precious tefillin. That’s a lot of money to appease social pressure and quite un-Jewish expectations. No criticism intended, just sad.

    in reply to: English language Hamodia in Yerusholyim #1781762

    rational
    Participant

    When the Gedolei Olam speak speak and write in English only, this possibility can be discussed. To the best of my knowledge, not one of the following spoke or wrote in English. Rav Shteinman zt”l, Tav Elyashiv zt”l. Rav Shmuel Auerbach zt”l, Rav Kaniefsky, Rav Edelstein, Rav Deutsch, Rav Friedman, The Gerrer, Vizhnitz, and Belzer Rebbes, and more. Even native English speakers like Rav Hirsch and Rav Asher Weiss do not write Torah in English.

    I highly suggest learning Hebrew and reading Hamodia and other papers in their original. I’m sure we all agree that there is nothing like the original. Yes, it’s tough to do, but it’s worth it. The non-Hebrew readers will always be only looking in through the outside glass at what is happening. Torah is in Hebrew, period.

    in reply to: Civet coffee #1781759

    rational
    Participant

    Since most (not all) of us here are approaching this issue from a “talking in learning” standpoint, without getting involved in personal or denominational innuendo, I’ll allow myself a momentary switch to the other side.

    Indeed, bal t’shaktzu seems like a personal mental issur, where each person may have a different level of disgust for a certain product, rendering the issur highly subjective. However, we are used to the chachamim determining a measure of objectivity in many halachot, where the “average person” is the determiner, and outliers are disregarded, a “lo plug”. Therefore, it could very well be that this coffee is assur , as the average person spending $50 or so on a cup is well aware of the process and the process may be objectively m’shukatz. The fact that the drinker has adjusted mentally may not be enough to nullify a lo plug”

    But then we are in trouble. Why then, according to some sources in this sugya, is donkey (or camel and horse
    urine permitted ? (if it is assur, it is because of hayotze min… and not bal t’shaktzu) I don’t see it as being less disgusting than the civet coffee, maybe even more so. As another example, I have a relative who became vegetarian after seeing the “disgusting” process of shechitah . I venture that many many people would be similarly disgusted at what is seen in a shlachthois. Would they be forbidden to eat meat because of a personal bal t’shktzu? I don’t know, but I doubt it. I enjoy eating tongue, but I admit the thought of a tongue being cut out of the animal places me dangerously close to bal t’shaktzu. But I still eat it. Is this a problem? Hmm…

    Of course, we may end up with a simple solution. According to the personalized approach, anyone who wants to cough up that much money for a cup of this coffee is not disgusted and it is permitted. Anyone who is disgusted by it wouldn’t dream of spending the money. To each his own.

    I have not finished studying the article in Tehumin 31 (page 488? Rav Fishman authoring), but I’ll chime in again when I do.

    in reply to: Your 21 year old son may be ready for marriage #1781533

    rational
    Participant

    I believe very strongly that encouraging 21 year old boys to get married is just going to exasperate the problem.

    I am exasperated by the exacerbation of ignorance of the English language here.

    in reply to: Civet coffee #1781531

    rational
    Participant

    I am in the middle of reading a long piece in Tehumin 31 on this topic. I’ll follow up when I finish.

    In the meantime, bal teshaktzu is definitely a player here, but the coffee is unlikely to be forbidden because of this. The coffee bean looks normal, and certainly the coffee is not mi’us, on the contrary, it is supposed to be splendid. The disgusting aspect is only in the preparation and not in the product. The coffee drinker is not exposed to anything that would be considered m’shukatz, and based on this specific consideration, there is no issur bal teshaktzu and the coffee is permitted

    in reply to: Civet coffee #1780447

    rational
    Participant

    Interesting question. My assumption would be that civet coffee is not kosher, as the civet is not a kosher animal. היוצא מן הטמא , טמא. Since the coffee attains its special properties from its travels through the animal, the bean would not be considered an independent product, but rather a product of the animal.

    Argon oil, if processed by goat droppings, would be kosher, as the goat is a kosher animal. היוצא מן הטהור, טהור

    in reply to: Are You Ready For Moshiach????? #1775905

    rational
    Participant

    Why are you wearing a kipah srugah?

    in reply to: Should Wedding gowns for the extended family be discontinued? #1775505

    rational
    Participant

    “Unless some sort of rabbinic directive is given it will be too embarrassing for people to stop getting gowns. It’s become too much of a given at every chasunah.”

    Thank you for this post, the issue is clear to me now. This custom is simply a result of social pressure started by the monied who need to flaunt their wealth. It is against everything taught in the Torah world, as it glorifies materialism for materialism’s sake. And everyone is embarrassed into complying. How Jewish.

    In Israel, this unbecoming custom is unheard of. One will not see it among the yeshivish, chassidish or dati leumi. Only in America, the land of chitzonius.

    in reply to: Yeshiva Learning Styles #1775508

    rational
    Participant

    No criticism intended. I am amused that one can write a long paragraph on learning styles today without using the word “Brisk”. Go figure.

    in reply to: Elon Musk’s Shabbos Car #1772575

    rational
    Participant

    David Y, well done.
    They were called the Karaites, and they still exist

    in reply to: Why Is “Tu B’Av” such a Yom Tov???? #1771460

    rational
    Participant

    It is a Mishnah in Masechet Ta’anit, Perek 4, Mishnah 8

    אמר רבן שמעון בן גמליאל: לא היו ימים טובים לישראל כחמשה-עשר באב וכיום הכיפורים, שבהן בני ירושלם יוצאין בכלי לבן שא[ו]לים, שלא לבייש את מי שאין לו – כל הכלים טעונים טבילה – ובנות ירושלם יוצאות וחולות בכרמים. ומה היו אומרות: שא נא עיניך, בחור, וראה מה את בורר לך; אל תתן עיניך בנוי תן עיניך במשפחה

    in reply to: Eating Fish #1770313

    rational
    Participant

    Read the thread again, it’s easy to spot

    in reply to: Why Give Garlic Cloves at a Pidyon HaBen? #1769560

    rational
    Participant

    The list of segulahs is massive, seemingly endless. Most of them are intended to assist in providing children (including all necessary preparations leading up to it), health and financial prosperity (בני, חיי ומזוני) There are books filled with segulahs that are easily purchased. Some people believe in them , some less, some live by them and some completely avoid them.

    in reply to: Eating Fish #1769559

    rational
    Participant

    Swordfish were eaten by Jews in the Mediterranean countries for over 350 years. In the early 1900s they were also eaten in the U.S. In the early 1950s a prominent U.S. Rabbi paskened they were forbidden, and much controversy ensued.
    Partly because the Conservative movement approved the fish, the Orthodox vehemently opposed it. This psak l’chumra was never accepted in Israel, yet as time passed fewer restaurants and stores were willing to sell it, and one cannot find it here anymore. Its scarcity contributes to the general feeling that it is tzu pas nisht. However, one can find yesteryear poskim who approved it.

    In answer to LightBrite’s question, yes, there are a few well-known and some not well-known experts on this subject. When a company or individual wants to market a new fish or four-legged animal, the question goes to the experts at the OU, the Edah Chareidis, the Chief Rabbinate in Israel and Orthodox academic authorities to discuss the issue. Sometimes they agree and sometimes they do not. The aim is to achieve a consensus opinion one way or the other, cooperation which is good for klal yisrael.

    All of the information above can easily be found online. I have access to one of the experts on these issues, so I have heard much of it from him.

    I suggest avoiding attacking Rav Hershel Schachter, one of the truly great Torah scholars and poskim of our generation. It reflects very poorly on the attacker and displays great ignorance. When asked a question in learning or psak, Rav Schachter answers with full intellectual honesty. OU public policy and corporate considerations will not enter a personal discussion with him, and anyway, are governed by different rules.

    in reply to: What’s The Difference bw Agudah & The OU? #1769592

    rational
    Participant

    The Agudas Yisrael political party is an integral part of the management of the Zionist State called Israel. There are Agudah Ministers and Vice-Ministers, mayors and city councilman, attorneys and accountants who work for and mange Affairs of State. It is most fitting that it’s American counterpart Agudas Yisrael of America fight for Zionism.

    in reply to: Why Give Garlic Cloves at a Pidyon HaBen? #1768812

    rational
    Participant

    There is a kabalah (Rabi Tzadok Hacohen) that eating from a seudat pidyon haben is equivalent to fasting 84 days, which is a segulah for atonement (kaparat avonot, Rav Chaim Vital). The remez is פדיום = פ”ד יום. In order to partake in the seudah and reap the benefits, it is enough to eat even a slight amount of food, provided the food has a noticeable taste. Since garlic and sugar have distinct tastes, there is a minhag to hand out garlic and sugar at a pidyon. That way a large number of people can benefit at a very small cost.

    in reply to: Which famous people have you met? #1767460

    rational
    Participant

    These are the “famous” people with whom I have had one-on-one meetings or discussions and only in private, never in public. Some meetings were for up to an hour, and many I met with more than once, all one-on-one:

    In alphabetical order, lest anyone be offended:

    Rav Ben Zion Abba Shaul
    Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach
    Rav Yosef Elyashiv
    Rav Shneur Kotler
    Rav Yitzchak Ruderman
    Rav Eliezer Menachem Man Schach
    Rav Yosef Dov Soloveitchik
    Rav Yitzchak Yaakov Weiss (the Minchas Yitzchak)
    Rav Eliezer Waldenberg (the Tzitz Eliezer)

    in reply to: ADHD is EXTREMELY underated #1766300

    rational
    Participant

    “ADHD is commonly diagnosed so that schools will receive state special education funds.”

    So too in Israel, particularly in Chareidi schools.

    in reply to: Why is Yad Soledes Bo so Cold? #1765955

    rational
    Participant

    Indeed, Rw Shlomo Zalman zt”l held that it was 45 degrees Celsius.

    Machon Tzomet manufactures their Shabbat devices with this psak in mind, and because of the nature of thermostats, allows for a small error. Therefore, they set their products at a maximum of 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees F).

    I’ll add that the halachah does not say אצבע סולדת בות but rather יד סולדת בו , indicating that any part of the hand that would recoil is considered too hot. Essentially, this criteria determines an upper limit. Once the hand recoils, it’s already too hot, so it’s best to be cautious and set the temperature less than the limit.

    One more thing. One cannot compare air temperature to being immersed in water. A human can survive very hot or very cold air temperatures, but not water. At a water temperature of 50-60 degree F, one can lose consciousness within a few hours. On the warmer side of the scale, cells start to die at a water temperature of 106 F.

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