Volume 11 Number 63
                       Produced: Sat Feb  5 22:15:58 1994

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Definition of "Rov" in Tanach and Talmud
         [Israel Botnick]
deriving benefit from idolators' innovations
         [Lon Eisenberg]
         [Richard Rudy]
Kiddush clubs (2)
         [Zev Sero, Shimon Schwartz]
Matzah on Shabbat Erev Pesach
         [Nimrod Dayan)]
Medical Ethics and Halachah, Shemita
         [Aryeh Blaut]
Mezuza on office door
         [Isaac Balbin]
Shul choirs, singing during davening
         [Jeremy Nussbaum]
Source for Rabbi Goren P'sak on territorial concessions
         [Gratz College Library]


From: <icb@...> (Israel Botnick)
Date: Fri, 4 Feb 94 09:32:27 EST
Subject: Definition of "Rov" in Tanach and Talmud

Henry Edinger pointed out that The word "rov" in Tanach always means
many-- not majority. This seems to be true in most cases but there
is at least one place in Tanach where "rov" means majority. The
last posuk in Megillat Esther contains the phrase "ve-ratzuy le-Rov
echov" [Referring to mordechai that in addition to being second to
king achashveirosh he was viewed favorably by "Rov" of his brethren].
Rashi(quoting gemara megilla 16b)  translates "rov" here to mean
majority, since a minority of the sanhedrin didn't approve of the fact
that mordechai had to give up much of his time from learning Torah in
order to become second to the king.

While "rov" in tanach usually means many, in the mishna and talmud it
almost always means majority - as in "holchin achar ha'rov'" and
"batel be-'rov'". In the context of prayers, "rov" also seems to mean
majority - for example in the prayer right before the korbanot we say
"ki rov maasei'hem tohu vi'mei chayeihem hevel lifonecha" [for most of
their deeds are desolate and the days of their lives are empty before
you]. There is also a bracha mentioned in gemara berachot 59b which
is to be recited at the end of a long drought - which has in it the phrase
"Boruch Kel Rov Hahodaot". The Ramban translates "Rov" here as many or
multitude while other rishonim(Rabeinu Yona and others) translate it as most.

Israel Botnick


From: eisenbrg%<milcse@...> (Lon Eisenberg)
Date: Thu, 3 Feb 94 23:01:01 -0500
Subject: deriving benefit from idolators' innovations

Jonathan Goldstein said:
> A similar problem is this: if an idolator invents a cure for a terminal
> disease and then uses this cure to advance idolatry, am I allowed to use this
> cure on a Jew who suffers from the disease?

Well, we can ask the same question in a slightly different way:
If an idolator [Hentry Ford] invents a new method of transportation [a car]
and then uses this new method of transportation to advance idolatory [by
driving it to church], is a Jew allowed to use it? :-) [or :-(]


From: Richard Rudy <r101564@...>
Date: Thu, 3 Feb 1994 23:13:16 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Gedolim

After having read some of the many posting regarding who is and is not a
certified gadol and what the criteria ought to be, I am reminded of a
similarly insoluble question.  In law school we read of how one of the
Supreme Court Justices dealt with the issue of pornography.  I believe it
was Justice Blackmun who said: "I know it when I see it".  Lehabdil, of
course, I am struck by the subjectivity inherent in identifying what
essentially comes down to each person's definition of greatness and suggest we
all admit that each of us "knows Gadlut when we see it".

Having admitted that, we can avoid much debate and simultaneously recognize
one of the most beautiful aspects of Judaism; its plurality.

Richard Rudy


From: Zev Sero <zev@...>
Date: Fri, 4 Feb 94 11:30:59 -0500
Subject: Kiddush clubs

Ezra Tanenbaum wrote:

> An aside about Kiddush clubs. Let's say that an individual really does
> feel physically burdened by waiting until after the speech and after musaf
> to say kiddush and have a bite to eat. Which of the following would be
> most preferable:
> 1. eat a hearty breakfast before davening and then daven fully with the
>    congregation.
> 2. daven quickly alone, both shachris and musaf, and then eat - perhaps
>    going to shul to hear the Torah reading and Kedusha with the congregation.
> 3. doing like the "kiddush clubs" - davening shachris with the congregation.
>    Taking a short break to eat and say kiddush -- then returning to the
>    davening.
> I prefer #1 for myself - since I often get a headache and irritated, which
> can lead to worse aveiros bain-adam-ladam (person to person) than the aveiro
> bain-adam-l'makom (person to G-d) of eating before davening.
> A cursory reading of halachic sources would seem to prefer #2 or #3,

The Tzemach Tzedek of Lubavitch ruled in such a case that `it is better
to eat in order to daven than to daven in order to eat' (`besser essen
tzulib davnen, eider davnen tzulib essen').   Source: Hayom Yom

Here is one major 19th century posek who agreed with Ezra.  This ruling
doesn't appear in his teshuvot, so it's not in the halachic sources that
people would ordinarily consult.

Zev Sero	<zev@...>

From: <schwartz@...> (Shimon Schwartz)
Date: Fri, 4 Feb 94 12:05:29 -0500
Subject: Re: Kiddush clubs

> From: <amizrahi@...> (Alan Mizrahi)
> >>  What would be if the shul *officially* scheduled its kiddush before or
> >>  after laining? (This is actually done in some frum camps.)
> > I see two immediate problems.  If you make kiddush before musaf, the
> > cohanim/chazzan will not be able to deliver the priestly blessing at
> > musaf, due to their having drunk wine. 
> Is this really a problem.  To the best of my knowledge, no Ashkenazi shuls 
> do Birkat Kohanim, except on Yom Tov.  On regular Shabbatot, having kiddush
> after leining should not be a problem.  Besides, not everyone has to drink 
> wine at kiddush anyway.

Most shuls in eretz Yisrael perform Birkat Kohanim -daily-.
There is a direct problem for cohanim.

Chutz la'aretz, Ashkenazic shuls say "Sim Shalom" at the end of shacharit
and musaf amidot, and "Shalom Rav" after mincha and ma'ariv.
We also say "Sim Shalom" and "borcheinu ba'bracha" after mincha
on a public fast day.

Would a chazan who had made kiddush before musaf be required to omit
"borcheinu ba'bracha"?  Would he have to say "Shalom rav"?
Do we, in fact, do this on Simchat Torah in shuls so inclined?

Also:  It's not reasonable to ask the shaliach tzibbur for musaf to
refrain from drinking wine/schnapps, while the rest of the congregation
partakes freely.

	---Shimon Schwartz


From: <Nimrod@...> (Nimrod Dayan))
Date: Thu, 3 Feb 94 23:01:04 -0500
Subject: Matzah on Shabbat Erev Pesach

Regarding what was said about Rav Ovadia Yosef stating that on Erev
Pesach that falls on Shabbat one may eat matzoh that is fried, i.e.,
"French Toast" Matzoh- In Chacham Ovadia's sefer "Yalkut Yosef," the Rav
writes [translated]: "It is permissible to eat cooked matzoh on erev
Pesach, and even for those who do not agree with this, anything that was
cooked before Pesach, there is no prohibition whatsoever as to eating it on
Shabbat Erev Pesach, and such is the ruling that fried matzoh is
permissible to be eaten on Erev Pesach." (Yalkut Yosef, Helek V- Mo'adim,
page 377.)
                                Nimrod Dayan
| | \|IMROD |--|  |                        |  Nimrod Dayan  |
/-------------------\                      |<ned1@...>|


From: Aryeh Blaut <ny000592@...>
Date: Thu, 3 Feb 94 23:01:13 -0500
Subject: Re: Medical Ethics and Halachah, Shemita

>From: <mlowitz@...> (Mark Lowitz)
>My step-daughter [11th grade, Torah Academy of Phil] is working on a 
>paper on the subject of medical ethics and halachah. I wonder if
>anyone could offer her comments, info, ... 

RJJ has had some teriffic articles on various related topics.  Of 
the volumes I have handy, topics have included:

	Ethical Guidelines for Treatment of the Dying Elderly (#22, Fall '91)
	Rav M. Feinstein's Influence on Medical Halacha (#20, Fall '90)
	The Ethics of Using Medical Data from Nazi Experiments (#19, Sp '90)
	Halacha & Hospice (#12, Fall '86)
	Truth Telling to Patients W/ Terminal Diagnoses (#15, Sp '88)
	Halachic Aspects of Organ Transplantation (#5, Sp '83)

The Journal of Halacha & Comtemporary Society -
Rabbi Jacob Joseph School
350 Broadway
NY, NY  10013

Aryeh Blaut

>From: "J.Leci" <te2005@...>
>I heard today from Israel radio that the Rabaanut has allowed the JNF
>to plant trees in the Shmita year. Can anyone provide me with info on
>this Heter?

I called JNF to ask them about planting this year.  They sent me a fax
of the details of what the Rabaanut has allowed & what they haven't
allowed.  I do not know their basis for their rulings.

Some of the differences is that the saplings have to be transported
either in a totally enclosed truck or the tree itself has to be covered
in plastic.  The dirt can't be broken off of the roots.  The roots
should be wrapped in a plastic.  The tree should be planted either by a
non-Jew or by an un-employed Jew.  No ceremonies may take place.

Aryeh Blaut


From: Isaac Balbin <isaac@...>
Date: Fri, 4 Feb 94 11:30:54 -0500
Subject: Mezuza on office door

I am an academic in a University and it occured to me that I might
perhaps have to have a Mezuza on my office door. I began to look
into it---a cursory review of the relevant chapters in Yoreh Deah
and it would appear that I should perhaps have one.

Can anyone point in the direction of T'shuvos which deal with this (or similar)

Of course, I don't own the office nor do I rent it. I have use of it.
Others also have a key but it is mine.


From: <jeremy@...> (Jeremy Nussbaum)
Date: Sat, 5 Feb 94 07:51:45 -0500
Subject: Shul choirs, singing during davening

I have gotten together a group of men to form a Shul choir.  We enjoy
singing together and wish to share it in some way that enhances Tefilah
on Shabat and Yom Tov.  We are not doing this in any official capacity,
only for "fun."  We are not looking to prolong the davening, or to have
a virtuoso performance.  The person leading davening in this group is
musical, but doesn't "dray."  We are actually going to lead shacharit
and hallel on this coming Shabat Rosh Hodesh.

I'm interested in what people have to say about:

1. personal opinions about the musicality of Shabat and Yom Tov
davening, e.g. does having a "nice sounding" davening enhance or detract
from your davening experience.

2. experiences with choirs in Orthodox shuls (listening or singing).

3. Any halachic opinions on matters relating to the musicality of Shabat
and Yom Tov davening.

4. What the issues are with repeating words in different parts of the
davening.  (We currently don't repeat words, but do have the choir echo
the shaliach tsibur on one or two parts.)

5. Sources of appropriate music and arrangements.

Thanks in advance,

Jeremy Nussbaum (<jeremy@...>)


From: <dichter@...> (Gratz College Library)
Date: Thu, 3 Feb 94 23:01:20 -0500
Subject: Source for Rabbi Goren P'sak on territorial concessions

Dear colleague, One of our readers would like to see The Pesak of Rabbi
Shlomo Goren concerning the territorial concessions.

Thank You, Gratz College Library
Please reply to: <Dichter@...>


End of Volume 11 Issue 63