Volume 11 Number 67
                       Produced: Sun Feb  6 23:29:25 1994

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Conservative Shuls
         [Bob Smith]
El Adon
         [David Kessler]
Eruv is down announcements
         [Anthony Fiorino]
JNF planting during Shmittah year
         [Daniel Friedman]
         [Frank Silbermann]
Proper Pronunciation
         [Lenny Oppenheimer]
Repeating words in prayer
         [Gedalyah Berger]
Shmirat Shabat
         [Hillel Steiner]


From: Bob Smith <bob_smith@...>
Date: 6 Feb 1994 22:21:47 -0500
Subject: Re: Conservative Shuls

 In "Conservative davening" Joshua W. Burton makes a statement that "the
majority of readers will of necessity never set foot in a non-Orthodox
shul."  I have no reason to doubt this reality but I find it troublesome
and indeed tragic.  It would seem to some that by necessity, meaning in
order to maintain a viable Jewish community in America, and in the face
of rising intermarriage, assimilation, and apathy, all committed Jews
should actively seek out commonality with others in the greater Jewish
community.  There would seem to me to be no way for Jews and Judaism to
survive in enclaves such as my own (12,000 Jews, perhaps 20 shomer
shabbat families) without seeking to maximize serious "intrafaith
"interaction and cooperation on both individual and institutional
levels.  The reality is that we face in America a tragedy of immense
proportions, and I fear that the Rabbonim that forbid "travel" among
denominations may be doing a disservice of historic proportions.  Hence
my question is what are the halachic parameters and decisions related to
either encouraging or forbidding intra-faith interactions and


From: <kessler@...> (David Kessler)
Date: Thu, 3 Feb 1994 09:23:06 +0200
Subject: El Adon

The problem (if you consider it such) is not  s i n g i n g  it,
but saying it at all.  The point is that it is a later piyyut,
inserted into the Yotzer (after the bracha Yotzer Or) section of the
Shabbat service.  There are many poskim who are opposed to the
addition of piyyutim at this point, as it is a hefsek (break) in the
middle of the long Yotzer section, which is all one bracha.  This
problem usually is discussed in connection to the various piyyutim
inserted during Rosh HaShana and Yom Kippur - and until Mr. Teitelbaum's
rabbi mentioned it I had never heard it discussed in connection with
El Adon, (and I don't know of anyone who doesn't say it) but the
principle should be the same. (So much for principles :-)  ).
David Kessler              Dept. of Physics, Bar-Ilan Univ.


From: Anthony Fiorino <fiorino@...>
Date: Wed, 2 Feb 94 17:20:18 -0500
Subject: Re: Eruv is down announcements

Joel Goldberg wrote about an episode where it was announced that the eruv
was down, which reminded me of a question I have had:

I have been in shuls on shabbat when a person arrived who had seen that
part of the eruv was down, and that person immediately began telling
people that they shouldn't carry anything home.  Or, as in Joel's story,
where it was formally announced that the eruv was down.  I had learned
that if one discovers that the eruv is down, the halachah is in fact that
one should tell NO ONE about this discovery, since people may not heed
your warning and will then be sinning b'meizid, etc.  What I am curious
about are the parameters of this din.  Does such a restriction apply eruv
shabbos?  For instance, we have an eruv number in our community which I
call every week -- if, eruv shabbos, I discover that the eruv is down,
should I keep that information to myself, or attempt to notify people
before shabbos?  Also, if I see a person telling others that the eruv is
down, should I attempt to silence that person?  Appropriate references
would be appreciated.

Eitan Fiorino


From: Daniel Friedman <danielf@...>
Date: Wed, 2 Feb 1994 23:22:45 -0500
Subject: JNF planting during Shmittah year

There have been a number of postings on M-J recently concerning the Jewish
National Fund/Keren Kayemet L'yisrael planting during a shmittah year
(in particular, this year).  I called the JNF office in Silver Spring,
MD last week and a person from the office called me back.  The JNF
person told me that monies being collected this year will be used to
plant trees NEXT YEAR.

  Daniel Friedman                EE Dept. & Institute for Systems Research
  danielf@{wam,eng}.umd.edu         University of Maryland at College Park


From: Frank Silbermann <fs@...>
Date: Wed, 2 Feb 94 08:35:53 -0500
Subject: Re: Mashiach

In V.11 No.42 Dr. Moshe Koppel points out that over the past generation
the three most ideologically active and succesful subgroups within Orthodoxy
have emphasized what could be called 'Messianic' aspects of its area of focus.
Gush Emunim has focussed on attachment to and liberation of Eretz Yisrael
as part of an *irreversible* Messianic  process; Lubavich has focussed
on the unity of all Am Yisrael, even the most distant, as a necessary
prelude to the universal acceptance of the Mashiach (possibly the Rebbe).
For the Yeshiva velt the norm has become the Messianic ideal of learning
without working (the idea of 'ish tachas gafno' and 'melachtecha naseis
al yedei acherim').

Dr. Koppel finds more than a bit curious the parallel unfolding of serious
sebacks to each of these movements --- the illness of the Rebbe shlit'a,
the Madrid conference, and the Reichman's declaration of bankruptcy.

> In the event that Mashiach doesn't come real soon are we headed for
> Sabbatean calamity?  Or are we perhaps headed towards an overdue
> retrenchment from ill-considered perspectives?

There is a subtle but critical distinction between:

1. believing that the Messianic era is imminent
2. taking actions which would prove disastrous were this assumption in error

The error of Shabtai Zvi's followers was that they burned their bridges
behind them to prove their faith.  I know ardent followers in each
of the three movements who would be willing to do just that.
It is up to our rabbis to ensure that we take only those actions
which would be reasonable and proper whether or not Mashiach is coming soon.

I suppose that Messianic idealism is a great way of generating passion,
and passion does attract many people.  I may be atypical in that I distrust
passion and often feel uncomfortable in the company of passionate people.
Thus, I have been unable to commit myself fully to any one of these movements.

> Will disappointment lead to stultifying despair or will the forced
> abandonment of comfortable theological positions lead to creative
> renaissance?

Maybe this will lead to a new resurgence of the kind of Orthodoxy
typified by, say, the British Chief Rabbinate.  :-)

Frank Silbermann	<fs@...>
Tulane University	New Orleans, Louisiana  USA


From: <leo@...> (Lenny Oppenheimer)
Date: Fri, 4 Feb 94 12:05:32 -0500
Subject: Proper Pronunciation

Leora Morgenstern provided a fascinating list of common mispronunciations:
Some comments:

> Rav, not Rov.

see below.

> There are actually two correct pronunciations for the expression
> yud-yud-shin-resh  caf-chet-caf.sofit:
> yiyasher kochacha (or kocheich) and yishar kochacha (or kocheich)

This expression has always troubled me, since I am not sure how it is
complimentary or salutatory to wish someone "May your strength be
straightened".  Perhaps it means "May your powers be directed on a
straight path".

I once asked Rav Dovid Cohen shlita about this.  He indicated that there
is a source somwhere, but wasn't sure off-hand, for wishing "Yasher" to
others.  I wish I remembered more.

On the subject of the emPHAsis of the wrong syLLAbyle:

> Given this fact, how can there be any possible questions as to which 
> syllables to stress when we speak?  and how can we explain -- or tolerate -- 
> the egregious pronunciation that we hear so often -- in conversation, in 
> shiurim, in tefilah? 

Hear, Hear! (or perhaps better not!).  See below.

> What's especially puzzling about all this is that there seems to be some
> sort of political agenda involved.  I've noticed that those with
> Yeshivish affiliations tend to mispronounce words in this way more often
> than those with YU and/or modern/centrist Orthodox affiliations.  

I think that it is not so much a political agenda but a sociological
one.  (Although there might undeniably be a political one as well for
some folks).  The YU/MO crowd, in Chutz La'aretz (Diaspora) is far more
exposed to spoken Modern Hebrew than the Yeshivish/Chassidic world.
Thus the former are far more sensitized to the language as an everyday
idiom in which there are grammatical and enunciative norms that sound
silly when speaking to the busdriver and shopkeeper unless spoken
correctly.  You will find, therefore, that Israelis who share the same
Yeshiva or Chassidic political ideas with their foreign counterparts are
a lot gentler on sensitized ears, (as least as far as pronunciation is
concerned ...)

Conversely, the Yeshivish and Chassidic groups are far more exposed to
Yiddish as a spoken tounge than the YU/MO people.  I don't have any
scholarly basis for this opinion, but it seems to me that proper Yiddish
simply has different pronunciation norms for many of the very same words
that it shares with Hebrew.  Why it came to be this way I don't know. It
seems to be true for instance, that in Yiddish it is Rov and not Rav.
(In certain dialects it is Roov).  This proper Yiddish pronunciation is
unfortunately, but somewhat understandably, carried over to Teffila and
other uses of Hebrew.

Lenny Oppenheimer


From: Gedalyah Berger <gberger@...>
Date: Thu, 3 Feb 94 23:00:37 -0500
Subject: Re: Repeating words in prayer

In #56, Aliza Berger (no relation) asked:

> Larry Teitelman writes that when asked,a rabbi commented that singing
> "E-l Adon" (even without repeating words) might constititute a hefsek
> (break forbidden during prayer).Why?  Is it that one isn't allowed to
> sing prayers?Why not?

If I'm not mistaken, I was the friend whom Larry was quoting when he 
posted this story. (Correct me if I'm wrong, Larry.)  The singing per se 
was not the point; the rabbi in question was referring to saying it 
altogether. The reason for the possible problem is that 
the actual text of the first berachah before keri'at shema of shacharit 
consists of, I think, the first line, the kedushah, and the final 
paragraph ending with "yotzer hame'orot."  The extra parts which we say 
on Shabbat, and even Hame'ir La'aretz during the week, I think, are 
piyyutim (liturgical poems) which were added later; so, if one objects to 
interrupting the berachah, then in theory these should constitute a 
hefsek whether one repeats words or not.  I'm pretty sure that the 
intention of the rabbi, who of course said this with a smile, was that 
since we all indeed say these piyyutim, then there's probably nothing
wrong with repeating words in them either.  I'm sure that many would 

Gedalyah Berger
Yeshiva College /RIETS


From: <HSTEINER@...> (Hillel Steiner)
Date: Wed, 2 Feb 94 08:36:00 -0500
Subject: Re: Shmirat Shabat

Just a clarification of Yosh Motinband's poster:

The Hebrew version of the Shmirat Shabat now has three volumes.
The third volume ( 1993) contains a comprehensive introduction
to the laws of Shabbos, defining concepts basic to Hilchos
Shabbos (e.g. Kilachar Yad, Melacha Sheina Tsricha L'gufa et cet.),
corrections of Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach to various footnotes
in the two previous volumes and helpful indices of the Shmirat
Shabbos according to the simanim of the Shulchan Aruch.

With any guess, the  introduction will eventually become textbook
material in Israeli schools as the other two volumes have.
It is  very good backround  material in understanding
Hilchos Shabbos.

Hillel Steiner


End of Volume 11 Issue 67