Volume 11 Number 35
                       Produced: Fri Jan 21  0:59:11 1994

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

         [Etan Cohen]
Anonymous Quotes
         [Leon Dworsky]
Centrist vs Haredi
         [Rivkah Isseroff]
Fathers name in Talmud
         [Yechiel Pisem]
         [Zvi Basser]
         [Elliot Lasson]
Length of Morning Shabbat Service
         [Lon Eisenberg]
Opinions of Neuwirth, *Shemirath Shabbath*
         [Constance Stillinger]
Rav Pappa's sons
         [Hillel Steiner]
Repeating the Pasuk with the word zecher
         [Gedalyah Berger]
sources on dogs
         [A. M. Goldstein]
Traditional views of Authorship of the Zohar
         [David Kaufmann ]


From: <ecohen@...> (Etan Cohen)
Date: Wed, 19 Jan 94 14:09:08 -0500
Subject: Alef-bet

> We're reading the aleph-bet to our 21-month-old daughter (it's
> a fascinating book) and that got me to thinking...
> Why do "caf", "mem", "nun", "peh" and "tzadi" have "sofit" (final)
> forms in addition to their standard forms?
> Eric Mack and/or Cheryl Birkner Mack

According to the discussion in the Talmud, Tractate Megillah, pages
2b/3a, the "sofit" forms appeared in the tablets of the ten
commandments. The discussion in the Talmud suggests that these forms
were fixed by halacha.  By implication, the answer to the question of
why these forms are used as such is simply that they were fixed by
halacha at least by the time of the ten commandments.  I realize that
this does not answer the question of why they exist at all, but I hope
that this information is helpful.

Etan Cohen


From: Leon Dworsky <ljd@...>
Date: Tue, 18 Jan 94 06:19:30 -0500
Subject: Anonymous Quotes

In V11,N18 (I am, as usual, a bit behind) Eitan Fiorino asks:

> Why is it that a number of people on mail-jewish, when they are
> disagreeing with a posting, choose to quote that posting anonymously
> (ie, "one reader posted the following") even if they have quoted
> approvingly from that person's postings other times, using the person's
> name? Is it an attempt to dehumanize the "enemy" by making him/her a
> nameless, faceless electronic entity?  (After all, it is much easier
> to argue with a "poster" than with a friend). Or is it that one is so
> blinded by anger that one can no longer recognize even the names flitting
> across one's computer terminal?  Or is it a good deed, by not publicly
> associating a person's name with the blasphemous and heretical statements
> previously written by that person?  This sociological phenomona seems to
> be "trans-hashkafic" but still, I think bad . . . any other thoughts?

   My personal answer is ...   D)  None of the above.   ... and I suspect
my answer fits other posters.
   Shortly after I got my Chutzpah level high enough to start posting to
m-j, I addressed a remark made by Shimon Schwartz (<schwartz@...>)
regarding kashrut and used his name in my quote of what he said.
   Although what I attacked (and attack I did) was a frequently heard
comment, many readers reacted as though I were attacking Shimon personally,
not his comment as an independent thought - unrelated to the poster, per se.
I received a few private posts from Shimon's friends telling me how unfair I
had been to him.
   Since then, if there is any possibility that the reader might think my
post is addressed to the individual, rather than the concept, I have left
the posters name out.
   I wish it were not so, as it does make it appear that I have no interest
in the poster as a personality, but that is far from my mind or intent.

New Subject: "Only on mail-jewish"

   I started to review my above post for spelling, logic, etc.  Suddenly
a bell went off! In November a Shimon Schwartz contacted me by phone and we
then continued to correspond by email in order to arrange accommodations
for him over a Shabbat that he would have to spend here in Durham. I checked
my archives, and Yep, it's the same Shimon Schwartz!
   We met that weekend and hit it off quickly and beautifully.  Neither of
us made the connection I have just made!

Leon Dworsky    <ljd@...>


From: Rivkah Isseroff <rrisseroff@...>
Date: Mon, 17 Jan 94 22:15:58 -0500
Subject: Centrist vs Haredi

It seems like the recent discussion of "gadlus" has left many unresolved
issues, among them the definition of "a Gadol".  Injected into this
discussion has been the recognition that "gadol" to a Centrist *may*
(note asterisks) not be a "Gadol" to a Charedi.

This led me to ask myself what I knew about defining the terms Centrist
and Charedi, and admittedly, it is very little.  Outside of identifying
members belonging to these groups by attire (ie presence or absence lack
of hair covering for women, Kippah s'rugah, black hat), what are the
essential differences in Haskafah that separate these Orthodox Jews into
two distinct, and from the tone of our recent MJ conversations,
*seemingly* adversarial groups? I would very much appreciate some
definitions and, for anyone willing to take on the task, an
understanding of why Orthodox observance could not be viewed as a
continuum, rather than a system with discrete groupings.

Thank you. Rivkah Isseroff  


From: Anonymous
Date: Mon, 17 Jan 94 15:12:02 -0500
Subject: Emden/Eibshitz

> Meanwhile, despite it all,  there may well have been some truth
> in the core issue, I've been told - Rav Eibesitz may have been
> some kind of a closet Sabbatean.  I haven't seen the sources myself, yet.

  It is known to me that a certain Rav, who can legitimately claim expertise
  with the writings of R. Eibshitz, is of the opinion that he (R. Eibshitz)
  was in fact a closet Sabbatean. However, and this of course touches on
  the central issue of Da'as Torah and the whole question as to the place of
  scholarship in the Torah world, he will not publish his conclusions because
  he is afraid that he would no longer be accepted in "right wing circles."


From: Yechiel Pisem <ypisem@...>
Date: Mon, 17 Jan 94 20:26:16 -0500
Subject: Re: Fathers name in Talmud

In reply to Elie Rosenfeld's post on the Siyum text:

I have heard from my rebbeim that the only time the father's name is mentiones
along with the son is if the father was worthy of being mentioned.  Then, if
the father was a Rov you would use the term Bar, not the term Ben.  
Any questions you can E-Mail to me.  I will gladly print them out for my
Rebbi. (Halevai I could be one myself!  I'm only 13)
Yechiel Pisem


From: <fishbane@...> (Zvi Basser)
Date: Wed, 19 Jan 94 10:44:33 -0500
Subject: Re: Gematria

Thanks for the reference to Radbaz.
I had always thought gematrias were serious drashot. check out Rebbe's
gematria for 39 work categories based on the gematria of "elah" on BT
Shobbes 97b and check out the references in Mesoras HaShas. It seems
to be a complete drash for Rebbe. thats the basis of his argument.

zvi basser


From: <Elliot_David_Lasson@...> (Elliot Lasson)
Date: Mon, 17 Jan 94 20:26:19 -0500
Subject: Hechsher

Is anyone familiar with the hechsher of a Rabbi Asher Zeilingold of
"Upper Midwest Kashruth".  I have found his symbol on a couple of

Elliot Lasson
Oak Park, MI


From: eisenbrg%<milcse@...> (Lon Eisenberg)
Date: Wed, 19 Jan 94 10:44:27 -0500
Subject: Re: Length of Morning Shabbat Service

Robert Book writes:
>It would seem to me that the desire to "hurry up" and finish services
>quickly is almost as disrespectful as leaving early; perhaps even more
>so, since insisting that the service go faster would have a negative
>effect on the kavannah [intention/concentration] of those who wish to
>pray at a more reasonable speed.

I personally find that when the service is too slow, I lose concentration.
Let me also point out that one can also become hungry, since it is not
permitted to eat before finishing Shaharit.  Although I prefer an early minyan,
unfortunately there is none where I live.  Almost every shul (there are about
10 of them in our neighborhood) starts at about 8 and finishes a bit after 10.
I really wouldn't mind finishing at 8 or 9 and having morning kiddush and


From: Constance Stillinger <cas@...>
Date: Mon, 17 Jan 94 16:59:02 -0500
Subject: Opinions of Neuwirth, *Shemirath Shabbath*

I would like to hear people's opinions of Neuwirth, *Shemirath

Do people in the Torah observant community find it a useful reference?
Is it accurate---and if not, is it generally too strict or too lenient?



From: Hillel Steiner <HSTEINER@...>
Date: Mon, 17 Jan 94 15:11:54 -0500
Subject: Re: Rav Pappa's sons

An interesting source for the saying of Rav Pappa's sons at a siyum
can be found in the Yam Shel Shlomo, after the seventh perek of Baba
Kama. Two cute explanations are given.


From: Gedalyah Berger <gberger@...>
Date: Sun, 16 Jan 94 16:12:37 -0500
Subject: Re: Repeating the Pasuk with the word zecher

> From: Marc Meisler <mmeisler@...>

> ...the last pasuk had to be read while pronouncing
> the word zecher once as zecher and once as zeycher.This is based on the
> dispute over whether it means that the memory of Amalek has to be blotted
> out entirely (zeycher) or all of the males of Amalek (zecher).Perhaps
> somebody else can elaborate on that with some source for it.

I don't think that's true; I'm pretty sure that there's no dispute over
the meaning of the word.  The question is simply a textual one, whether
the proper, masoretic vocalization is with a tzeire ("ey") or a segol
("e").  Everyone agrees, I think, that zecher means "memory."

Incidentally, Rabbi Mordechai Breuer published an article in Megadim
once claiming that the segol possibility is definitely wrong. Of course
he didn't say it exactly that way; he characteristically said something
more like "it's totally ridiculous and anyone who says both during
Parashas Zachor is engaging in a farce and a mockery of a mitzvah."  If
any of you have ever heard him speak, you'll understand.

Gedalyah Berger
Yeshiva College / RIETS


From: A. M. Goldstein <MZIESOL@...>
Date: Tue, 18 Jan 94 11:43:24 -0500
Subject: sources on dogs

For a study that is being done on animals--specifically dogs--and Jews
in the Middle Ages, central Europe, does anyone know of any sources,
primary, on the subject; language doesn't matter (Hebrew, Latin, French,
German)?  Secondary sources okay, too. Does the subject come up in
Tosafot or in any of the Responsa?


From: David Kaufmann  <david@...>
Date: Wed, 19 Jan 94 12:53:14 -0500
Subject: Re: Traditional views of Authorship of the Zohar

A question recently came up concerning the scholarly opinion about the
authorship of the Zohar. I know that the contention that it was composed
late and by Moshe de Leon has come under scrutiny and even been
seriously questioned by non-observant scholars, but I've been unable to
trace back references.

Can anyone help with some recent work verifying traditional assignations
of authorship and date?

David Kaufmann INTERNET:	<david@...>


End of Volume 11 Issue 35