Forum Replies Created
May 6, 2020 1:38 am at 1:38 am in reply to: What is EY doing in fighting Covi-19 that NYC can learn from” #1857515
Of course Israel is smarter and better than the USA, but it’s not really a fair comparison.
Population numbers in Israel and NYC are indeed similar, but Israel has about 9 million people in 8,550 Square Miles, while New York City has about 9 Million people in only 300 Square Miles!
New York has Grand Central Station, Penn Station, Times Square, and 2 International Airports, where hundreds of thousands of people arrived (back before the City closed down) and departed every day from dozens or even hundreds of countries.
Also, Israel does not have any better medical treatment for the virus than any other (civilized) country, They just had better help from hashem.February 20, 2020 4:56 pm at 4:56 pm in reply to: dirshu siyum was 80% chassidish, understanding why? #1833715
I disagree with Simplesense’s theory that it is all political – though if we were just comparing the siyum alone, it might be a factor, The Dirshu siyum speeches were almost entirely in Yiddish, which possibly precludes a lot of non-Chassidim.
If you read back to what I said earlier, it is not just this siyum. As APY guessed, the participants in the Dirshu Kinyan Torah program in NY City are mostly Chassidim. I don’t know exact figures, but I say this from observations I personally noted at testing sites and and past Dirshu Shabbatons – where there was no Agudah competition.
In my experience, all soda fountains and coffee machines I have ever seen had filters on the water line. Not for kashrus reasons, but for quality control. They don’t want their product to taste bad just because of dirty water.February 15, 2020 11:24 pm at 11:24 pm in reply to: dirshu siyum was 80% chassidish, understanding why? #1831996
Chachamdawid – while you may be saying something correct (I don’t know that statistic) it does not address the question. Halacha is just one of Dirshu’s programs, and only a small program. Their largest program, and the one that is relevant to the OP, is specifically their Kinyan Torah program, in which people learn, review, and get tested on 30 blatt each month coordinated to the Daf Hayomi. Those were the people at the Siyum celebrating their own completion of Shas, and by far a much more impressive accomplishment than just sitting through a Daf Yomi shiur, listening to a daily shiur while doing other things, or even “doing the Daf” by reading the English side of the Artscroll Gemara.
The question was a very good one. The obvious simple answer is because Dirshu participants in the NY Metro region are 80% Chassidim. The nest question would be why? As a Dirshu pariticipant and Proctor I had the same question myself, most recently after the Dirshu Siyum. I don’t know the answer yet. Joseph’s response is certainly thought-provoking but difficult for me as a non-Chassid to accept that I have become a minority. Yes, I agree that those enclaves of Chassidim certainly are well populated, but there are surely many Kollelim in Flatbush, Lakewood, and other cities in the US that still have people learning who are not Chassidish. Why do none of them participate in Dirshu? Dirshu is open to all, there is no Farher or application process. Learn the material, and show up at a testing site to take a test. But I can personally testify that the Flatbush testing sites are rather empty compared to the Williamsburg and Boro Park testing sites. As a test-taker, I have been to all of them. OTOH, The Lakewood site was also pretty full, and those were not mostly Chassidim.
It is clear (and no surprise) that many of the posts here state facts that are not facts at all, but assumptions or guesses that the poster wishes were true, just to make their point. Anyone that actually sells on Amazon knows and has surely personally experienced the real facts.
I cannot give all of the precise details, because I also don’t personally sell on Amazon, though my son, neighbors, and friends do. But here is what I know:
– Most sellers are using FBA – Fullfillment by Amazon, which means that they own the product and send it to Amazon’s warehouse, and Amazon does the shipping. However, when you return it, it goes back to the Seller, not to Amazon.
– The return policy you are all referring to is set by AMAZON, not by the Sellers. Sellers do not have an option to refuse to allow or accept your return.
– Once an item is returned to you, you can send it back to Amazon again (at your own expense) if it is still in brand new condition. Even if the item is in new condition, 2-3 months could have passed since the item was originally sold, and the market price (for example on the latest electronic items) could have dropped drastically.
– Too often the item will be greatly devalued, broken, missing parts, or even totally swapped with a fraudulent replacement. In some cases you can fight with Amazon for a refund, but that too is an expense.
– If it is no longer brand new, you usually have to sell it elsewhere (like on eBay) for a lot less. Rarely is it possible or worthwhile to sell used items on Amazon.
So even though Amazon forces sellers to accept returns in order to make their site popular, each return inevitably causes some loss to the seller. If you choose to blame that loss on amazon and say that you are doing nothing wrong, I can’t say for sure that you are a thief. Add to that the likelihood that even Amazon’s generous policy might not allow you to buy items with the specific intention of using it and returning it. So if I told you in advance that a huge percentage of the sellers of certain items are frum Jews, would you still feel comfortable doing it anyway? If you were able to ask the sellers permission (not Amazon) they would all forbid it, 100%.
It is not helpful bringing a proof from store xyz that gave you permission to do it. The manager of that store is not personally taking a loss on your return. Also, in a regular store, the percentage of people that return things for no valid reason (meaning not defective or the wrong size etc…) is far lower than on Amazon. Amazon Sellers know that you typically have to factor in at least a 30% return rate into your business calculations.September 23, 2019 6:25 pm at 6:25 pm in reply to: What’s the secret to washing a knife or putting it in the dishwasher right away? #1788992
There is no hope for you, it is just the way you are.
In my home, my wife is exactly like you. She leaves the knives on the counters or the table. Usually many of them. Then they get covered up by the pots that she leaves on top of them. She can never seem to locate any knives when she needs them.
OTOH I wash the knife as soon as I am done with it and put it into the dishrack to dry. Not because I am a neat freak, but because more than likely, I will need it again soon and I don’t want it to have dried-on food. It is far easier to rinse it right after use than to scrub away old stains. Plus I can easily find it if it is in the dishrack or back in the drawer (once it has dried.)
It is not a Man vs. Woman thing. Many homes have it the other way around too. It is a bit of a Rachmonus when both spouses are messy (but they are probably happy that way and don’t mind.)
ELUL is Roshei Teivos “Ani L’Uman V’Ishtil L’Imah”
There is a lot more to opening a store there than just having an available location and potential customers.
Like everything else in the world, there are politics. And of course logistics. The existing NY kosher distributors will not travel 200 miles out of their way just to deliver to one store. 7 Mile Market has their own truck(s) that bring them their stock. You can be sure they are not offering to share it with another store. And local distributors in Maryland already have contracts with 7 Mile Market that would be put in jeopardy if they agree to service their competitors.July 9, 2019 6:51 pm at 6:51 pm in reply to: Deducting Stars in Your Online Review: What is Proper Consumer Practice? #1755957
This discussion about doing business with Jews reminds me of that (fictional) sign in the window of a company:
“I would rather do business with a hundred Arabs than one Jew!”
It was a funeral parlor.July 9, 2019 6:45 pm at 6:45 pm in reply to: Deducting Stars in Your Online Review: What is Proper Consumer Practice? #1755956
What a great idea! There ought to be a secret code that sellers can put into their profile, like “100% SHT”U” to inform other Frum Jews that if they select that specific seller on Amazon they will:
a) be doing a Mitzvah D’Oraisa of “Oy Koneh M’Yad Amisecha” (AKA. one should opt to give his business to Frum Jews when there is a choice)
b) be more secure in knowing (allegedly) that as a Frum Jew , the seller is more likely to be honest and fair in both describing his product, and in correcting problems that may unintentionally crop up.
As an incidental side affect, the buyer will in fact be prohibited from posting negative feedback until he determines that the seller is in fact NOT a SHT”U.
Meanwhile non-Jews will still be free to post whatever review they want, so the general effectiveness of the feedback system shouldn’t be affected and/or be taken advantage of.July 9, 2019 11:29 am at 11:29 am in reply to: Deducting Stars in Your Online Review: What is Proper Consumer Practice? #1754521
Redleg – perhaps you are not aware of the way the current online marketplace works. You mention Bezos as an online seller, but in fact Amazon is a ‘marketplace’ (almost like eBay) where only part of the products are actually being sold by Amazon itself. A huge part of the items sold are either sold and shipped by private sellers, or owned and listed by private sellers but stored and shipped from an Amazon warehouse (called FBA – Fulfilled By Amazon.)
Years ago frum people discovered that selling on Amazon through an FBA business is a clean and easy (Kal V’Naki) way to make a living. There are thousands of Frum people in Lakewood and across the country that are doing it. Many Jews also sell on eBay. So although Jeff Bezos is not a Frum Jew, there is a very good chance that a product you buy on Amazon or eBay belongs to a Frum Jew.July 9, 2019 10:19 am at 10:19 am in reply to: Deducting Stars in Your Online Review: What is Proper Consumer Practice? #1754514
AJ – don’t be ridiculous. First of all, I did not mean anyone specifically. 2nd, someone who knows to ask what the Halacha would be in a specific situation is not ignorant. I was referring to posters who AFTER being told what the Halacha is (and I don’t mean by some random respondent on his own, but quoting Orthodox Rabbonim,) routinely deny the correctness of the Halacha by saying “it cannot be that way because I don’t agree.”
I am sure you understand that it happens here all of the time. And to further add insult to their ignorance, they do just that – they often add insults to their ignorance!
A person that KNOWS that they DON’T KNOW the Halacha and need to ask is a Talmud. A person that THINKS they know and never asks is the one who is ignorant, because they DON’T KNOW that they DON’T KNOW.July 8, 2019 3:39 pm at 3:39 pm in reply to: Deducting Stars in Your Online Review: What is Proper Consumer Practice? #1754052
Come to think of it, Joseph specifically said “Shomer Torah U’Mitzvos”, so that precludes a thief or crook. By definition therefore the problem would be either the result of a misunderstanding (You expected a higher-quality item,) an innocent mistake (you received the wrong item), or something beyond his control (it arrived damaged.)
Even before you consider the Torah Halacha, why would you want to punish even a non-Jewish seller forever by posing a bad review (any less than ALL STARS is considered bad) for an innocent mistake? Especially if they ultimately give you refund!July 8, 2019 3:38 pm at 3:38 pm in reply to: Deducting Stars in Your Online Review: What is Proper Consumer Practice? #1754042
Joseph – although explaining yourself may not make a difference to certain ignorant (and possibly even ignorant that they are ignorant) and/or Halacha-denying posters, sometimes a little explanation can make a difference to a different innocent poster who is willing to follow a psak of poskim, and would benefit from an explanation. Not that poskim have to explain themselves – anyone denying the correctness of Halacha because they don’t agree with it may be an Apikores. No explanation is required. But where an explanation is available why not provide it.
Here is one scenario explained:
If a merchant sells a product and makes his living from it, and once in a while you get a product that is ‘less than you anticipated’, your Halachic recourse is only to get a refund. Once the seller has refunded your money, he has satisfied all of his obligations to you. Even if he DOES NOT give you a refund, you would only have a claim against him (in Bais Din) for the amount of your purchase. Posting a bad review online however can (and unquestionably will) result in hundreds or thousands of dollars in lost revenue, far exceeding any claim you may have against him. The damage you do to his business will continue to accumulate forever.
Most of the time we are not dealing with an outright thief that is perhaps advertising a non-existent product and purposefully ripping off all of his customers. If that were the case, other (non-Jewish?) reviewers can be relied on to warn you and others. A situation where your review is absolutely needed to protect future Jewish victims from being robbed is unlikely and maybe not what Joseph was referring to.
CTLAWYER – Yes, I agree with you that government money can spell big problems in the future. If you have a better solution, please implement it.
I love the fact that you never had a problem with tuition – you just wrote a check. But surely you understand that not everyone is in the same boat as you. You would be one of those HEAVY HITTERS that should (and maybe do and did) help subsidize the tuition for the less fortunate.
However, in Brooklyn (for example) when a school may contain an overwhelming majority of students from large families with low income, there just aren’t enough wealthy parents to rely on. The schools almost purposely make it so by admitting only students whose parents are ‘In Chinuch or Kollel” and turning away any parents that actually work for a living. Then they teach those students that Kollel is the only acceptable lifestyle.
BTW – I just had a very difficult time negotiating with a prominent yeshiva for next year. They refused to reduce their seemingly very high tuition demand (except for a meager discount) even though I presented a proper need. They alleged that they already reduced it to their bare minimum to meet their expenses. The only option they offered me is that any funds that I can get anyone else to donate to the yeshiva would be offset against my tuition. I am very worried about this for the coming year, as it seems that I have entered into an agreement for an amount of tuition that I don’t know how I will pay.
So would you like to make a generous (or even modest) donation to a very respectable well-know prominent yeshiva? You would be getting a Tax Deduction and helping another Jewish family send two ehrliche Bochurim to Yeshiva.
I don’t expect any actual response, but if anyone actually wants to take me up on the offer, I could provide the name of the Yeshiva here.
It is possible that Undercove is referring to a specific situation in a specific Yeshiva that may in fact be doing something incorrect. But his generalization “Any Yehiva…” is then mis-applied.
Even his subsequent explanation was rather incredulous. I can’t imagine any Yeshiva that admits people without making any financial arrangements at the beginning of the year. So if the parent are in financial hardship and have in fact ‘paid all they can’, how does that compare with whatever arrangement they agreed to with the Yeshiva? Did they lie to the Yeshiva and agree to pay an amount that they had no intention of honoring?
Or perhaps they encountered a financial hardship later in the year, and now cannot pay what they agreed to? In that case, they should contact the Yeshiva and renegotiate the terms.
Although there are surely many exceptions, all of the Yeshivas, Schools, and Camps that I have dealt with in my 25 years as a parent of seven children have been run by decent humans who may have a tough policy but ultimately will negotiate if there is a legitimate need.
The only Admission Cards I have ever heard of were included or referred to in the initial Admission process for the first day of the school year. Some schools don’t have the ‘Admission Card’ policy at all. Some reference it but never ask for them on the first day. And most important of all – some schools have them, BUT if you call them and make proper arrangements, whether your balance is paid up or not, they will agree to send them to you. They have no interest in actually following up their threat. All they want if you to make arrangements or discuss your balance.
I meant if you insist on the other meaning of K’Neged (against.)
The word K’neged clearly has two possible meanings – a) Corresponds/equivalent to, or b) Against. This dual meaning has often been used as Drush to reveal a second ‘hidden’ meaning in various pesukim or sayings of Chazal.
One of them was quoted above from the Satmar Rebbe Zatza”l.
Another was the drasha quoted above about Eizer K’Negdo.
How would you explain Talmud Torah K’Neged Kulam?
When I heard my son refer to the Kodesh HaKodoshim (Holiest of Holies – the innermost chamber of the Beis Hamikdash) as “Kudshei Kodshim”, Ignoring the slang/accent, I corrected him, explaining that Kodshei Kodoshim are the category of Korbonos (Sacrifices including Olos and Chataos) that are Holier than regular Kodshim (such as Shelamim). Thus they can be plural. But there is only one Kodesh HaKodoshim, and it is Holier than the Kodesh (middle chamber of the Bais Hamikdash). He in turn passed my comment on to his Rebbe, who acknowledged my point.
However, afterwards I noticed that sometimes even the Mishna and Gemara also interchanges the same supposedly incorrect term of Kodshei Kodoshim. So unless there is a Girsa correction that the Bach or other commentators failed to notice, this problem of incorrect Grammer or Word usage has been going on for thousands of years! Or else my observation on which usage is more correct is actually incorrect – but I don’t know why yet.June 11, 2019 3:45 pm at 3:45 pm in reply to: Does a convert adopted by frum parents have a bashert? #1740570
“The seventy most difficult questions in Judaism” – Wow, that could keep the Coffee Room busy for quite a while!!
Trivia note: The Malbim’s peirush on Tanach includes a volume called “Tehillos” rather than “Tehillim”.
If your set of Malbim doesn’t, that may be a modern publisher’s modification. The set in my Shul has it the way I described.June 5, 2019 5:13 pm at 5:13 pm in reply to: Does a convert adopted by frum parents have a bashert? #1738642
Maybe the whole question is a mistake. Isn’t it possible to say that when the Gemara says that Hashem decides the Zivhugim for every fetus at conception, it is referring to ALL babies – including non-Jews? The gemara does not specify frum Jews or even Jews at all.
If so, since HKB”H knew that the Ger would be Jewish by the time he would be ready to get married, Hashem picked out a nice Jewish girl for his Neshama.
Just proposing a possible answer. I don’t know what the Gedolim have written about it. I have no problem being shown to be wrong. I have been right a few times in my life.March 1, 2019 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm in reply to: What to Know Before Buying a Water Cooler or Dispenser #1688146
Are you giving advice that you forgot to include, or are you asking a question that was just not clearly worded?
1) How much it costs.
2) How you are planning on paying for it.
3) Where you will be getting water to keep it filled with.
4) They use a lot of electricity (like a mini-fridge.)
5) Pick a style and design that has features you like.
6) If you are Jewish, the dispenser lever/buttons, temperature controls, and overall system should be Shabbos-compatible.
7) You need a place to put it that is very close to an Outlet, and should not have carpeting or expensive wood flooring that might get ruined by spilled water.
And so much more. You should study the sugya for at least six months before making such a major life commitment!
So much in need of editing that it is practically incomprehensible.February 19, 2019 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm in reply to: Why Do Some Rich People Literally Think They Own The World #1681898
Maybe it would be enough to merely ask the customer if the flowers had already been paid for – sounding like a gently reminder just in case, and also sounding like you would be totally willing to take their word on it if they say yes. Asking for a receipt implies that you would NOT take their word and need proof, or else you would make them pay even if it might possibly mean paying for it a second time.
BTW – a few very rich people probably really do own the world.
A few years ago my family dressed up as “Di Gantza Chad Gadya”. One child was a goat, one was a cow, one was a Shochet, one was a fire. My costume was “the father”, with a bag of Zuzim on my belt. I wore what I thought would depict a biblical-era typical father, available online as “Shepherd”. Just a long robe and a simple head covering held on by rope headband. I like cheap and simple costumes that don’t embarrass me, and can easily be put on and off for entering shul, eating the seudah etc…
I was really surprised while driving through a non-Jewish neighborhood (possibly Bensonhurst?) when some non-Jewish children pointed at me and called out loud to their parent – Look! Its JE*US!
We still get a laugh at that whenever we remember it. I am laughing now.
I haven’t seen THAT costume in the stores yet… I wonder why? Wasn’t he a famous Jew?
You are spoiling his attempt to misdirect and hijack the thread!
Re: Clothing Stores with a Hechsher – My daughter loves to shop at a specific women’s clothing store in Boro Park because the owner is not afraid to tell her customers “That looks too tight on you. Try the next size or pick a different style.” She will refuse to sell a dress that is not tznius. (This of course only works when the person tries it on in the store, and when it is for themselves.)
She probably loses a lot of business this way, but that is precisely why my daughter goes there.
It’s not a hechsher, and it is certainly unusual. I suppose any customer buying clothing in any store can ask their Rebbetzin if a dress is tznius enough for them if they cared (and don’t trust themselves to judge it.) You don’t need a hechsher. The food industry is very different, because the buyer can’t know if the ingredients and factory are kosher or not on their own without a hechsher.
No, it cannot be. No one is ever so OTD that they wouldn’t put an electric menorah (all 8 bulbs lit from December 25 through Jan 2) next to their tree. Even the goyim do that!
I spent a Shabbos in Cedarhurst for a simcha last year. I thought that everyone there bought their clothes on sale – 50% off!
Not everyone in 5T has this problem. I was at a wedding last week for a cousin from Woodmere, and I was pleased that hardly anyone was not dressed tzniusdik.
At a different wedding at the same hall just one month earlier where the Kallah was also from the 5T, the Mesader Kiddushin under the Chuppah actually waited until they draped a shmattah over the Kallah’s shoulders before saying the Brocha – that’s how undressed she was (and how frum he was B”H)! I was in the back and didn’t realize what was going on, but my wife and daughter filled me in afterwards. I stayed on the Men’s side and never looked at the Kallah, but apparently her dress was SLEEVELESS and BACKLESS!
Oy. I don’t think there is any Orthodox sect that pretends that such a thing is acceptable, no matter how modern.
In the time of Geulah (which may already be here), Moshiach will come wearing Techeiles to make Shidduchim.
There – I combined the three most popular CR topics into one!
Yes, of course this is the wrong venue for getting any serious responses.
I asked my son, who is an expert on old and classical Jewish Music, and he identified the tune as “Bemotzoei Yom Gila”. He did not yet tell me where and when it’s from, probably because he is at work and busy right now.
– Try adding soda flavoring to a SodaStream bottle prior to carbonating it – ignoring the multiple warnings on both the bottle and machine. A friend actually did this with spectacular results! The bottle exploded, sending soda to every square inch of the entire kitchen.
– A nephew of mine learned the very hard way why never to try extinguishing an Oil Fire in a frying pan using water. Boruch Hashem he was not harmed, but he did need to buy a new stove and hood, and repair the wall behind it too. In short, the water turns to steam droplets, encapsulated by burning oil. It essentially creates an instant explosive fireball. People have gotten horribly burned by this mistake. Yet it is not something intuitive or so obviously stupid (like some of our other joke hacks,) so many people do not realize the danger. Mitzvah Lefarsem!
– Put an incandescent lightbulb in the microwave to watch it glow.
– Put a metal fork in the microwave to watch it spark.
– Having to throw out the microwave with burnt holes in the walls from those two experiments, including a melted mass of metal that used to be a fork!
I think they just called it Bagleiten on the album. That might not be what it is really called. It might not even have a name – like some very old minhaggim songs, such as the tunes used for davening on Yomin Noraim and for Chassunahs. Or they may have descriptive names like “The alter Rebbe’s nigun for negel vasser.”
Google had such a feature in Beta once upon a time – search for a tune. It didn’t work too well for me because I only searched for Jewish stuff.
Lekovod Tu B’Shvat, many bochurim in Lakewood had dates.
Some had oranges or pomegranates too.
I know of a Rav that allegedly could help someone in Spiritual need, as long as he is not in Financial need. Because this Rav definitely fits your description of “Any resources … would be greatly appreciated.”
Meaning he charges lots of money to help people.
Nevertheless, people have claimed to be helped by him, so maybe (they believe) it was not a waste of money. But if you are poor – seek elsewhere.
Choshen Mishpat by R’ Yosef Cairo
Duct Tape and Rags instead of a proper coat.
A newspaper over your head instead of an umbrella.
Washing Mayim Achronim with a cup of expensive scotch instead of water. (And do it on the floor under the table.)
Parking by a hydrant or double parking instead of parking legally a block away.
Using plain water instead of Anti-Freeze + water. OR using any wrong fluid in a car instead of the proper one (e.g. Motor Oil instead of Brake Fluid, Diesel Fuel instead of regular unleaded.)January 10, 2019 6:31 pm at 6:31 pm in reply to: Yeshiva Fundrasing using Cigar Rolling and Wine Tasting #1660538
Besides – who said anything about smoking? The wine will be tasted, but maybe the cigars will just be rolled? And maybe sniffed?January 10, 2019 6:31 pm at 6:31 pm in reply to: Yeshiva Fundrasing using Cigar Rolling and Wine Tasting #1660536
How can they approve it or not if they haven’t tasted them yet? Once they taste them, the Cigars and Wine will bear a label Approved by Yeshiva Board!
But seriously – what exactly is so wrong with this, other than the general issur of smoking that so many people seem to not agree with? If a Yeshiva really wants big donations, they need to attract wealthy donors. A cotton-candy tasting event is not going to cut it. The “bessere menshin” think that they appreciate good wine and good cigars, and therefore this could have been a great idea.
Until some nudniks protested and brought them bad hype instead. This is an old story – Just because you don’t like an idea and wouldn’t show up yourself, why do you have to ruin it for everyone else? It isn’t exactly a chiyuv of LeHafrusha MeIssura.January 9, 2019 10:58 am at 10:58 am in reply to: Google Home, asking “OK Google” can have bad results? #1659410
I asked Google where I can find Daas Torah?
Answer is from Wikipedia:
Daas Torah is a concept in Haredi Judaism according to which Jews should seek the input of rabbinic scholars not just on matters of Jewish law, but on all important life matters, on the grounds that knowledge of the Torah aids everything in life. In Hasidic circles, a rebbe is often regarded as having extraordinary spiritual powers and is sought for personal advice in all pursuits of life by his followers. The views and edicts of a rebbe are considered to be an expression of Da’as Torah.
Definitely not on the coffee room!!
“decent gun owners must exercise self-discipline and allow themselves and their genuine motives to be placed on a register and be regularly monitored.”
One thing about guns that my father was worried about. I asked him why he didn’t buy any guns (legally) and he said – when the situation eventually changes in America and becomes bad for the Jews, the first ones they will round up and shoot are the ones on their list that they know own guns and are a threat to them.
Maybe paranoid, but it has happened before elsewhere, and just because it didn’t happen here yet, doesn’t mean that it never could happen.
BTW – my father was a marksman in the US Army. He learned it during his 2 year tour of duty. He was drafted in 1952, not during any wartime. He was not in Yeshiva anyway – even back then they only accepted the best students.
He never did anything with it after he came back home. He didn’t carry a gun or shoot any terrorists. But he still had the skills many years later. He taught me to shoot and was still a crack shot, even with aging eyesight and shaky hands.
But we always considered it just a game or hobby. We never considered that there might be a question of bringing guns to shul.
CTL – “I don’t believe private citizens should have guns in the USA”
You seem to disagree with the Bill of Rights.
There is a famous story of the Chofetz Chaim, who was asked by a non-religious father to daven for his son that was to be drafted into the (Austrian?) army. (Note – The son was presumably not learning Torah at the time.) He refused the request and said “Vos Iz Shleck as Er Vet Lernin Tzu Shissin?” – ‘What is so bad if he learns how to shoot?’
The father went home angry and never forgave the Chofetz Chaim. The son did indeed get drafted. Then came WW2, and the son found himself running away from the Germans in the forest along with a group of other Jewish young men. They were discovered by non-Jewish Partisons (non-army independent freedom fighters) who were ready to kill them to prevent them from drawing attention from the Germans. This man spoke up in their defense by offering to join them with his expertise in weapons on condition they take all of them together. They accepted him and thus he saved not only himself, but a group of other young Jewish men as well.
The son realized then the Chochma of the saintly Chofetz Chaim, and regretted only that his father never lived to understand the truth.
I am quoting a story I last heard some 15 years ago. Excuse me if I messed up some of the details. The punchline is still relevant – ‘What’s so bad if you learn to shoot?’ (But maybe not during Seder. Use your Bein Hazmanim or other off time.)
GH – are you not aware that saying Kapittel 13 thirteen times does in fact fit into the category of Tefillah? You said it yourself – “there is nothing more effective than direct teffilah from the heart to the Ebeshter. He doesn’t need/want intermediaries or mystical accessories”. In other words, saying Tehillim is a good ‘Segullah’.
There are numerous sources (that all agree to) that there are specific Perakim of Tehillim that are more appropriate for certain times of need. Doesn’t everyone say Perek 16 and/or 91 at a Levaye?
I don’t know the source of this one and never heard of it, but unlike other crazy segulos, this one probably won’t do harm and is muttar.
I think you mis-read the OP. He is not asking whether of not gun-control laws make sense. He asked, assuming that there are in fact going to be (or already are) gun-control laws, why are they not enforced?
There was probably an assumption that we would know what he is referring to – but I don’t. From the question and CTL’s response I am guessing that some law was proposed that is un-enforceable or will purposefully be looked away from to allow things to continue as is but to nevertheless have the law ‘on the books’.
I think it is perfectly logical.
If you do nothing to actually counter-act the Bris, you are Yotzeh having a Bris and aren’t Chayav Kores.
But if you expect the huge rewards that come with having a bris – which you did nothing to get and in fact seemed to show displeasure, you have to show satisfaction and acknowledge your consent.
Regarding icemelter’s questioning why we need pictures to ‘see’ our chachomim in front of our ‘eyes’, when past generations never did –
The Chofetz Chaim writes in one of his kuntreisim (I forgot which one because I have been learning them all from my ‘Kol Kisvei Chofetz Chaim’, but I could find it if anyone doubts me,) about the invention of the camera and voice recorder in his times. He says in past generations, when people learned the mishnah that says ‘Ayin Ro’eh, V’Ozen Shomaas, V’Chol Maasecha Nichtavim’ (An Eye sees, an Ear Hears, and all of your actions are being written down, for playback on the Yom Hadin) they used to believe it completely. Due to the degradation of our spiritual level, we no longer believe it so easily. So Hashem caused the inventions to happen so that we can now realize – if even a human can use a machine to record verbatim a voice conversation or a picture, surely in Shomayim they are recording every word. How much more so that should apply to today’s real-time video and audio recordings that are everywhere, on dash-cams and security cameras. Hashem has at least HD cameras!
We can extrapolate that the same might apply to our fear of sin. Whereas for Yosef Hatzaddik in Mizrayim the mere thought of his father’s face (whom he hadn’t seen in a year) was enough to stop him from sinning, today we need an actual photograph to make a difference. Someday, to stop us from sinning, we might need 3-D life-like android robots that look like our Rebbeim following us around giving us mussar all day long!
If the Yetzer Horah can use the latest updated technology to entrap us, we need to fight back with better equipment.