Volume 10 Number 33
                       Produced: Mon Nov 29 17:56:07 1993

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

         [Jonathan Goldstein]
         [Marci Lavine Bloch]
Genealogy program
         [Percy Mett]
         [Seth Magot]
         [Mechael Kanovsky]
Rav Hutner and Rav Kook
         [Marc Shapiro]
Update to Shemitta
         [Eli Turkel]
Yaakov (2)
         [Najman Kahana, Josh Rapps]


From: <Jonathan.Goldstein@...> (Jonathan Goldstein)
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 93 01:06:55 -0500
Subject: Re: Amalek

In Volume 10 Number 29 <RUEDNBRG@...> (Lucia Ruedenberg) writes:

> I am looking for references on the meaning and interpretation of the
> concept of "remember Amalek" and "Adonainissi". Any help would be
> greatly appreciated.

I recently attended a lecture by Yaron Svoray, in which he gave an
account of an infiltration of the Nazi organisation in Germany,
resulting in a collection of data on their activities.

According to him, the information he presented to the German government
is enough to place the major ring-leaders in jail for some years. No
prosecution has yet taken place (I am told that the constitution of
Germany outlaws Nazism and defines mandatory minimum sentances).

I have been taught that the Nazis are to be equated with Amalek. If this
is the case, is it not preferable for clandestine Nazi organisers to
quietly disappear, rather than be placed in a jail from where they can
still run their organisation?

Jonathan Goldstein       <Jonathan.Goldstein@...>       +61 2 339 3683


From: <LAVINE@...> (Marci Lavine Bloch)
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 1993 16:19:51 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Brachot

I know there are special brachot to be recited upon seeing a rainbow, or
other "unusual" sights in nature.  Is there a bracha for seeing an


From: <P.Mett@...> (Percy Mett)
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 93 06:57:45 -0500
Subject: Genealogy program

Larry Weisberg <WEISBERG@...> wrote [MJ vol10 #1]:

>The program for the PC with definitively the best value for the dollar is
>the 'Personal Ancestral File' (PAF). "X" says, "I have Release 2.2 of it
>and find it excellent for my purposes of keeping a family of currently short
>of 1000 names in the database.  

I too use PAF (on a Mac) and have a database with about 1400 names on
it. I reckon it is good value for money. I am also able to use Hebrew
fonts in it, but it cannot handle Jewish dates.

>[The above are the Mormons, and as many know they have an intense, and
>religious, interest in geneology issues. That reputadly have the largest
>geneology database in the world. I do not know if there are any Halakhic
>issues involved in purchasing such a program from them. Any thoughts?

Before buying the program I had the same problem and asked a shaalo
locally. The response (which clearly does not binds anyone else) was
that buying from the Mormons could not be considered as helping to fund
an Avoda Zoro.

== Now for my query: Does anyone know of any Jewish genealogy discussion list?

[Well, it just happens that there is a new list at nysernet called
genealogy run by Susan King. To join, send the message:

sub genealogy first_name last_name




Perets Mett


From: <MAGOT@...> (Seth Magot)
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 93 10:07:22 -0500
Subject: Headstones

    I realize that one should not "walk over" a grave.  This, of course,
can lead to some interesting moments when putting stones on top of a
headstone.  My question involves headstone rubbings.  Does anyone know
of any halakah prohibition against making a rubbing of a headstone -
providing you do not "walk over" the grave.

{For those who do not know what a rubbing is, or how it is done.  Place
a special tracing paper over the face of the headstone, making sure
there is a slight indentation where the writing is, then using a wide
crayon color over the tracing paper.  What is left is a dark background
with white letters.  The whole operation takes about 15 minutes.  It
does not deface the headstone, or does it do any damage to the

Seth Magot


From: <KANOVSKY@...> (Mechael Kanovsky)
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 93 14:19:18 -0500
Subject: Re: Pronunciation

A Taf without a "dagesh" is different from one with a dagesh and it is
also different from a samech. The yemenites pronounce a taf without a 
dagesh as a soft th i.e like thumb or throw.
mechael kanovsky


From: Marc Shapiro <mshapiro@...>
Date: Tue, 23 Nov 93 08:47:46 -0500
Subject: Rav Hutner and Rav Kook

Eli Turkel says that Rav Hutner was friends with Rav Kook when they were
both students. This is incorrect. R. Kook was so much older than R.
Hutner that they never could have been students together. Actually, R.
Hutner became a *talmid* of R. Kook when they were both in Eretz
Yisroel.  Furthermore, it is not necessarily revisionism which is why
people no longer identify the two as itellectual companions. It is well
known that in his later years R. Hutner departed from R. Kook's path. I
have it on reliable authority that he even removed R. Kook's picture
from his Sukkah where it used to hang. See also R. Neriya's latest book
and you will find that R. Hutner admitted using the ideas of R.  Kook in
his mussar lectures but he did not quote him by name. As he put it in
conversation with R. Neriyah, R. Kook only looked at the inner soul of
the secularists but he did not recognize how bad their actions were. (R.
Neriyah obviously responds to this point).
	Nevertheless R. Hutner remained emotionally attached to R. Kook.
See his letter in Iggerot la-Reiyah which he wrote to R. Neriyah.
					Marc Shapiro


From: <turkel@...> (Eli Turkel)
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 93 13:59:38 +0200
Subject: Update to Shemitta

      Included are some facts about shemitta that I have recently read
in various Israeli newspapers.

      Mr Mugrabi, a non-Jewish lawyer in Jerusalem bought about 75% of
Israeli land (all that belonging to the Israel Land authority) for
1,005,000 New Israeli Shekels (about $350,000). It amounts to about
6,000 square miles at $10.80 per acre.

      I have heard various figures as to how much land has been sold to
non-Jews. The chief rabbinate claims 90% while alternative sources give
75% or 50%. I suspect it mainly depends on how one measures. For
example, much of the land in Israel is owned by the Israel Land
authority. If a kibbutz uses (technically rents for 99 years) land and
refuses to sell their land but the government sells it, how do count
such land? Furthermore, should we count a percentage of agricultural
land or all land?

     The badatzim either buy Arab produce or else use an Otzar Bet Din,
which also relies on much Arab produce. Hence, most of the badatzim get
produce from Gaza. This presents a serious security problem.  Aguadah
got a heter to have the mashgiach stand at the edge of the field to
oversee the workers. The mashgichim leave home at 4:00 am and stay in
the fields from harvesting the crops in the morning until the trucks are
loaded in the afternoon. The Eda haCharedit applied for permission to
import produce from abroad but got turned down. Hence, they also bring
in food from Gaza. They did not approve of mashgichim standing at the
edge of the fields. Instead they hired a former IDF pilot to fly a
helicopter hovering over the fields at harvest and loading times. They
instruct the farmers what to do use flag signals. The trucks are then
examined when they reach Israel proper (for want of a better phrase) to
make sure that it matches what the farmers were instructed to load. As
previously mentioned the shmitta department of Tnuva has army
protection. Of course, all this extra expense in supervising the produce
in Gaza adds to the final price to the consumer. Furthermore, the Eda
haCharedit will agree to only about 100 stores and 6 wholesalers in
Jerusalem. They claim that they don't have the manpower to supervise
more stores and that this is enough for their requirements.

Eli Turkel


From: Najman Kahana <NAJMAN%<HADASSAH@...>
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 93 09:10 JST
Subject: Re: Yaakov

><zisblatt@...> (Sam Zisblatt) writes:
>Either way, it should be noted that Yaakov does not deceive his father
>in reality.

	Yaakov doesn't think so, Esav doesn't think so; Itzchak is soon
shocked to hear what had happened.

	Please refer to the Rashi on the Pasuk "Ani bchorcha Esav" (I am
your son Esav), the answer to blind Yitzchak's "who are you?".  Rashi
states that Yaakov's answer is to be read: "Ani, bchorcha Esav" (I am
me, Esav is your first born).  After you clear the fake-out (Rashi also
has a problem with Yaakov lying!), Yaakov declared that Esav is the

>Furthermore, Esav was a hunter and a fighter.  A person completely
>devoid of any spirituality.  He was not worthy of the birthright.  The
>"true" heir to Yitzchak was Yaakov, even though he was technically born
>after his twin.
This is more dangerous!!

1- There was no lie.
2- Although he didn't lie, the <whatever-it-was> was justified.
3- The lie he didn't make was justified by his evaluation of the situation.
Conclusion:  When an individual decides that someone else is not worthy of
receiving something (which he covets), then said individual may make up any
story and perform any deceitful acts to obtain his desire.

Najman Kahana

From: <jr@...> (Josh Rapps)
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 93 09:34 EST
Subject: Re: Yaakov

Alan Zaitchik points out the difficulties he has in perceiving Yaakov as
a Tam. My father told me an interesting interpretation of this ( I don't
recall the original source). Rashi, in Parshat Toldot, as printed in our
texts cites the word Tam as one who is not skilled in trickery.  He does
not include the word Ish before the word Tam in his citation.  The
implication being that while a Tam is one who is not skilled in
trickery, Yaakov was an Ish Tam, one who knew how to combat deceit when
confronted with it (Achiv beramaos, his brother and equal in trickery).

-josh rapps


End of Volume 10 Issue 33