A. Evening Q'riat Sh'ma
B. B'diqat Hameitz
C. Hadlaqat Ner Hanukkah
D. Counting S'fira
E. Hearing M'gillah
Note I would expect that there is a different answer for each case.
A. Evening Q'riat Sh'ma
B. B'diqat Hameitz
C. Hadlaqat Ner Hanukkah
D. Counting S'fira
E. Hearing M'gillah
Note I would expect that there is a different answer for each case.
Ashkenazim as a rule have a minhag to NOT eat matzah ashira on Passover - except for holim and z'qeinim.
What is the earliest source to extend the prohibition of matzah ashira on Erev Pesach from the 10th hour to the 5th hour?
It is not particularly difficult to imagine this question being the initial catalyst causing a Torah-observant Jew to journey away from Orthodoxy: Reuven one day stops to think about the meaning of the first paragraph of birkat hamazon; he is confused by some of the statements, the above included; he asks his rabbi about the apparent deceit; the rabbi offers an answer, or maybe a few answers, but none of which fully satisfy Reuven—as he sees it, while the answers do address the case, there is nothing anyone can say to change the fact that the text implies one thing and the world as we know it tells us something else. This incites, or unearths, an accelerating, almost stumbling, stampede of questions in Reuven’s mind, and, over time, he moves further and further away from Torah Judaism.
But I called it an infection. That’s not right, is it?
In the search for Truth, how do we know when to quell our rebellious voices? We believe that God exists and that He gave us the Torah at Sinai. But this is a belief, isn’t it? It is not an incontrovertible fact. It is possible that we are all practising a false religion, praying to a non-existent God, devoting our lives to a purposeless existence. If this were not possible, it would not be called belief. One of the main reasons we study Torah is because we believe that it will bring us closer to the Truth we all yearn for. But, again, this may be a mistake. And isn’t it our duty to investigate the reliability of these beliefs? If we are, whatever the costs, fighting on the side of Truth, aren’t we obligated to face these potentially-life-altering questions head-on?
But I called it an infection.
When a Jew-for-Jesus disposes of his New Testament and devotes himself to Torah, do we tell him that he is being hasty, that he has not fully considered all the angles, spoken to all the Jews-for-Jesus experts, investigated sufficiently all the literature on the topic? Do we say, “Hey—Jesus could be the son of God—how do I know?” Of course not.
But if we meet someone who is moving away from Judaism—who is, I mean, philosophically, ideologically, intellectually moving away from the tenets of Torah—can we watch passively? No—we have a duty to defend the system.
Aren’t we maintaining a double standard?
So it seems. We are presented with two commitments: one, to the humble, personal pursuit of Truth, and, two, to Torah and the Halachic system. And these two commitments, while we generally take for granted that they are aligned, sometimes diverge. If that happens, what is our first priority: to ceaselessly continue the personal quest for Truth, wherever that takes us, or to follow Halacha and uphold a Torah-centric lifestyle, regardless of the doubts that build?
If you are approached by someone with the above question—‘aren’t there people starving?’—and you sense that this question carries with it a burgeoning, powerful scepticism, do you assist him with his hunt, in the same manner that you would passionately, directly, fearlessly assist a man-of-faith who is committed to Torah to come to the Truth that he pursues, or are you restricted to providing carefully constructed answers, ensuring, first and foremost, that he remains Torah-observant for as long as possible?
Because, quite simply, if there are any answers to the major questions within Torah, they probably require at least a lifetime’s worth of study to find them. To suggest anything less than this is to undermine the entire system. So before you can come to an educated decision about the validity of Torah, in a sense, you have to commit yourself entirely to it from the inside; that is, you have to live an entire life as a Torah-observant Jew before you can accurately decide whether life as a Torah-observant Jew is a waste of a life or not. But when someone asks questions that are pointing in a direction away from Torah, the instinct can be to stage an intervention, as though the move away from Torah cannot possibly coincide with the personal drive for Truth; as though, without any offerings of doubt on the part of the faithful, it is a blunt, straight-forward decision, with an unmistakable right and an irreparable wrong; as though staying Torah-observant carries with it no risk at all.
But, worst of all, in our attempts to keep people within the circle of Orthodoxy, we betray the value that the questioning soul most cares about: the commitment to Truth. And once it seems that Truth is secondary to Halacha—a sentiment that is so vastly disastrous—we lose our capacity to bring light to the nations.
Can any good really come from defending the Torah against Truth, apologising on its behalf as if, somehow, we are in any position to do so? Can any good come from stifling the part of my consciousness that hungers to know the difference between light and darkness, holy and unholy? Isn’t that the part of me that made me a believer in the first place?
What is the earliest source stating that the Youngest Child should recite the 4 questions as prescribed in the Mishnah and the Haggadah?
Caveat, I do not mean to address the case when the child asks his/her own questions such as "Why do we pour a 2nd cup of wine?"
However, in most Machzorim that have Aqdamut, it's been moved to just before the laining.
What is the earliest source suggesting relocating Aqdamut?
Nowadays this has morphed into using lulavim and such as fuel with which to Burn Hameitz instead.
What is the earliest source to suggest this transition from using discarded lulavim for baking Matzot to burning Hameitz?
What is the earliest source that extended this to Yom Tov also?
L'mai Nafqa Minah?
Perhaps how one approaches 3 vs. 2 Matzot at the Seder.
For an illustration of this dynamic, see the BeHaG's position re: How many matzot at the Seder.
Webster's 9th collegiate p. 1008
«Retrofit - to furnish (a computer, airplane, or building) with new parts or equipment not available at time of manufacture
As I am using "retrofit"
Retrofit to furnish (a minhag, a svara or a chumra ) with new explanations or practices not available at the time of ('manufacture') original propagation
If any readers have a better term, I'd welcome their input.
1) to treat Qitniyyot as "issur" in a taarovet instead of mere minhag/humra/ch'shash.
Since Qitniyyot were originally construed as ch'shash and not as issur, to assign them the valence of issur is "retrofitting" - or retrospectively seeing it through modern lenses instead of through the lenses of its own origins
2) Aveilut of S'fira - To assign issurim such as music, movies etc., as pertaining to the aveilut of s'fira; when original sources only ascribe
c) m'lachah of some kind
And nothing else
When this aveilut is not added for new reasons but read into original sources, it's retrofitting. If it has evolved due to subsequent tragedies, then it has evolved by taking on new aspects. It has been enhanced by history. That would not constitute "retrofitting" AIUI.
3) Shebchal halaylot anu ochlin hametz umatza.
Original sources assign this to "aviv m'lamdo" IE the Father or leader teaches this.
Since we now assign this reading to the youngest child, reading this new practice back into the mishnah is a form of retrofitting, because EG Rishonim were unaware of this p'shat
4. Waiting to NIGHT to daven maariv on first night of Shavuot.
Rishonim were unaware of this humra. If one reads this mamash back into the passuq - then one is "retrofitting" this term to use it in a way not originally anticipated.
5) Similarly adding Corn Syrup and Peanut Oil to the g'zeira of Qitnoyyot
6) In American History
Construing America's founding fathers as racially oppressive because they either tolerated slavery or engaged it in themselves could be retrofitting the 13th Amendment back to the 18th century
Indeed, while we should not applaud this behaviour, we cannot use today's post-Civil War yardstick to judge them fairly as they were THEN.
EG G Washington freed all his slaves at his death. Seen by today's standards, what took him so long? That would be a retrofit
Yet, seen by standards of his era, he was quite enlightened. EG T Jefferson himself failed to emulate this noble act.
7) In American Constitutional Law
to ban the use of the term "God" due to the 1st amendment, when the US motto is "In God We Trust" and it appears in the national anthem etc. IOW to see separation of Church and State to this extreme is revisionistic. To read it into the first amendment is simply "retrofitting" a Politically Correct state Atheism into the text of the Bill of Rights.
The Rambam firmly construes Sefirat Ha'Omer as 1 Mitzvah. Sefer HaHinuch concurs with the Rambam's read. Abbaye affirms in the Talmud: Just as it is a Mitzva to count days – so it is a Mitzva to count weeks… This Passages strongly suggests TWO separate Mitzvot
Furthermore, the Mitzva to count days in Parshat Emor states:
Tisp'ru Chamishim YOM
While the Mitzva in Parshat R'eih states:
Sheva Shavuot Tispar Lach!
Isn't it obvious that the 2 verse in the Torah describe two separate but equal actions!?
Problem: How can an individual nowadays simply argue with the Rambam - especially any further support? Furthermore, must I not I construe the silence of so many peer reviews that as implicit acquiescence? AHA! In a recent shiur in Teaneck, a rabbinic intern provided an informative Rabbeinu Yerucham: he indeed considers Sefirah as 2 separate Mitzvot!
He also posits that it is indeed TWO mitzvoth. I have my suspicions confirmed by research; it now has supporting evidence!
I queried the speaker how did he find this relatively obscure source?
He noted that the new edition of the Minhat Hinuch has this source cited in the footnotes. This indicates that the matter assumed to be a slam dunk by the Hinuch is in reality a matter of dispute. And I need no no longer be concerned about the silence of the peer review in that this voice of opposition has been already articulated by Rabbeinu Yerucham early on.
. A matter of halacha which has been accepted for centuries can not be overturned, unless one can demonstrate that there simply was an error involved from the very outset.
Should he willingly accept the consequences of his convictions?
Zionist group bans Goldstone from grandson's bar mitzvah - Haaretz - Israel News
Or Mid-east pre-June 1967?
Read on - see comments section, too!
Yonkers Tribune : Ed Koch Commentary: A Dangerous Silence By Edward I. Koch
If they expressed curiosity about the assassin Prinzip's motives, they were the desirable students. If they poo-poohed Prinzip and said he was just "a nut" - then don't bother...
In zen the maxim is:
First you need to empty your cup in order to fill it.
People may be either
to learn something new. With these people, one simply wastes one's time teaching.
R AKiva had held a cynical view of Hachahmim before he changed his attitude. Once he dropped this "holier than thou" posture Torah flowed to him as rivers flow to the sea.
The biggest complaints frum teenagers have today - even more than about their parents - are about their schools. Not about too much homework, or mean teachers, or the typical "teenage" complaints. Rather, they express anger, bitterness, disbelief, shock, and even tears, over what they feel is an abandonment of their needs by their schools, in favor of what is more beneficial for the school's public image.
Teenagers are losing faith in their role models because they feel they are not cared for by them. In this, teenagers and adults are not at odds. Whenever I speak about chinuch, the audience never fails to express their dissatisfaction with our educational "system"...»
For others, it's just the kind of balance recommended by Qoheleth ch. 3! Times to rejoice and times to weep.
The Artscroll cycle of Shalosh Regallim Machazorim contains a wealth of liturgical text and commentary.
This Module may take longer than even Yamim Norai'I'm because - unlike the High Holidays - the Piyyutim are unfamiliar to most.
Plus there is a good chunk of supplementary Halachot and Mishnayyot. So poetry is juxtaposed with dry legalism. Another balancing act!
The Qinnot doesn't bring us much joy. But since Tisha b'Av is also a Mo"ed, it gets lumped together here. And we look forward for the day when it will join the other joyous Festivals
Plus the Torah Readings from all 4 occasions and their corresponding haftarot make for a great panorama of Jewish history - its ups and downs - from the construction of Shlomoh's Bet Hamiqdash to its destruction at the time of Yirmiyahu.
From Yehoshua's Passover until Yehezkel's vision, about 8 centuries are spanned.
And the Qinnot consist of a survey of virtually everything that has gone wrong for the Jews in History. Which makes the book both lengthy and intensely depressing. B"H we have telescoped several thousand years of suffering into a single day, and dedicated to it just one book.
But when Moshiach comes, please don't throw the Qinnot into the Geniza! There is too much history and poetry to ignore. Knowing from whence we came is a function of the Passover Seder - from Servitude into Freedom
Similarly when Mosiach comes keep your Qinnot to fulfill remembering "miyagon lesimcha; mei'evel leyomtov"
The Artscroll gives a vast amount of background on both the Qinnot and their composers. I find nothing finer to highlight the sheer multi-tasking genius of El'azar haQallir, then to see his embroidered 6-part acrostic structures - while simultaneously weaving several scriptural themes into the mix. Had Qallir been a chess grandmaster he probably could have handled a hundred concurrent matches.
Beyond the Qallir, an entire line of rabbis follow, from Maharam miRothenburg to R Shimon Schwab. It's too rich an anthology of Rabbinic thought in verse to miss out.
I don't know how long it would take to complete all 3 modules - but lo alecha ham'lachah ligmor.
Iyyov and Tehillim (selections)
Avos and Avos De
Selections from En Yaaqov
Rambam Sefer Mada
Hil. Deios, Teshuva
Also Talmud Torah
Avodah Zara and Yesodei hattorah
Also shemonah peraqim
Selections from Hinuch
Selections from Ramban on Humash
19 Letters - Dayan Grunfelds's intro to Horeb - selections from Horeb
Rav AI Kook
RYD Soloveichik on Teshuva
His meta-premises were:
Ergo what is unkosher NOW was always unkosher.
I tried to show that there is a Meta-Mitzva in Leviticus 18:3. It is our torah reading for Yom Kippur afternoon. Viz. Thou shalt not behave as the Egyptians and the Cananites. Narrowly construed it deals with incest, etc. As found in Lev. 18. However, it appears to explain several other prohibitions as well
My CN friend said that if the torah prohibited it now, it was always prohbited. Then he insinuated that anyone who thinks that mitzvot have evolved after Creation are into heresy....
I then stunned him by showing him Rashi on Devarim 16:22 (re: stone monuments)
"... This one HE hates because it was a Canaanite statute; EVEN THOUGH it was beloved during the era of the Patriarchs.." IOW for Abraham et. Al. It was desirable, but the Canaanites contaminated it by using it for their worship. NB: He didn't appreciate having insinuated that Rashi was saying something heretical :-)
My main contribution to this is that this falls under the rubric of the meta-Mitzva of Lev. 18:3How leavening/sourdough and how honey acquired baggage from Egypt is the topic of another post BEH soon.
The point is that certain Mitzvot WERE generated as a response to events and were NOT necessarily legislated before Breishit (the Beginning; or better: the BIG INNING :-) as baseball approaches)
And my CN friend may have been correct in principle; viz. that the torah indeed predates Creation and is indeed imutable. However he erred in understanding its implications. A more nuanced - and more accurate - understanding would take an essay.
Meanwhile, on this earthly plane my CN friend should be advised not to take certain things (such as a Midrash) too literally or rigidly. :-). And that what was OK once upon a time may have accumulated baggage making it no longer OK
Years 2-4: 3 year Mishneh Torah Program 1 Chapter a day using either Rambam L'am or Touger edition
Google Rambam Yomi to find out details re: how this program works.
D.A.F.'s Dafyomi Central Headquarters
Years 2-4 complete SA with:
Year 2 - Yoeh Dei'ah
Year 3 - Even Ho'ezer
Year 4 - Choshen M-shpat
After 8 years the student should now be ready for yore yore or yadin yadin
Year 2: SA Yomi - all 4 Halaqim
Year 3: SA Orach Hayyim with
Year 4: SA Orach Hayyim with
Dear President Obama:
Israel made an error in announcing that it would be constructing new housing in East Jerusalem during V.P. Biden's visit. That being said, Israel has apologized for this gaffe committed by a low level official. Turning this into a crisis by stating that Israel has to show it is serious about peace as Secretary Clinton did will only embolden already unrealistic Palestinian ambitions even further.
Mrs. Clinton should remember that it was Yasser Arafat that walked out of the Camp David talks convened by her husband after Ehud Barak opened with a generous offer. Therefore, it is the Palestinian leadership whom refuses to negotiate directly with Israel. It should be noted that the Palestinians have still not prepared themselves for peace. Its leadership has not denounced the use of violence against Israel and children are encouraged to martyr themselves. America will be perceived to be weak and waffling in her commitment to fight terror if she pressures her democratic ally to make further concessions before a true peace partner emerges.
Rabbi Steven Saks
Spiritual Leader of Adas Kodesch Shel Emeth,
President of the Delaware Association of Rabbis and Cantors
Senator Carper, Senator Kaffman, Congressman Castle