Volume 11 Number 84
                       Produced: Tue Feb 15  8:05:11 1994

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

         [Lon Eisenberg]
Dogs, Pets and Halakha
         [Doni Zivotofsky]
Eruv down announcements
         [Mike Gerver]
         [Robert J. Tanenbaum]
Miami Boys Choir
         [Joseph Steinberg]
Pronunciations and Conversions
         [Yosef Bechhofer]
Rambam on aggadah
         [Alan Zaitchik]
Schindlers List
         [Zev Gerstl]
Yichud and Converts
         [Michael Broyde]


From: eisenbrg%<milcse@...> (Lon Eisenberg)
Date: Sun, 13 Feb 94 09:21:11 -0500
Subject: Accents

Eli Turkel thinks Jeremy Schiff is going overboard about accenting the wrong
syllable.  I happen to agree with Jeremy.  When one is reading from the Torah
(scroll) for the congregation, certainly he would need to be corrected if his
stressing the wrong syllable changed the meaning of the word (which it often
does).  How can one then justify saying obligatory prayers with incorrect

It is so common to hear Ashkenazim incorrectly say Shema` (I've mentioned this
before in a previous post):  They say: "ve-a-HAV-tah et(es)" [and you loved]
followed by God's name, instead of the correct: "ve-a-hav-TAH et(es)"
[you shall love] followed by God's name.  The former (incorrect) stress is a
statement implying that you've loved God, but perhaps do not any more.  The
correct stress is effectively a commandment to love God.  I have seen this
topic (specifically relating to Shema`) discussed in books about prayer (I
unfortunately don't remember the names).

How about in the grace after meals (birkat hamazon): the typical (incorrect)
Ashkenazy pronunciation: "ve-a-KHAL-tah, ve-sa-VA-tah, u-ve-RAKH-tah"
[and you have eaten, and you have been satisfied, and you have blessed]
the correct pronunciation: "ve-a-khal-TAH, ve-sa-VA-tah, u-ve-RAKH-tah"
[you shall eat and have been satisfied, and you shall bless]


From: <DONIZ@...> (Doni Zivotofsky)
Date: Mon, 14 Feb 94 03:40:29 -0500
Subject: Re: Dogs, Pets and Halakha

	Several posts recently have raised questions regarding the
appropriateness of Jews owning dogs as well as how one may feed them on
Pesach.  in the Spring of 1992 issue of the Journal of Halacha and
Contemporary Society, Rabbi Howard Jachter wrote a review entitled
Halachic Perspectives on Pets.  In the first section he deals with the
propriety of owning pets.  He quotes the already quoted (on M-J) Gemaras
in Bava Kama, the opinion of the Rambam that it is forbidden to own a
dog unless it is chained (since it can cause damage), the opinions of
many other Rishonim (eg. Smag, Tur Yeraim, Hagahos Maimoniyos) that
limit the prohibition to evil dogs, the opinion of the Shulchan Aruch
and Acharonim that limit the prohibition to evil dogs and the opinion of
Rabbi Yaakov Emden that forbid owning any dog.  His discussion goes on
for seven pages.  Please see the article for full details.

	He also discusses the issue of feeding chametz to pets on Pesach
(be they dogs or "pocket pets" as on M-Jer inquired about) and the year
round question of feeding pet foods that contain meat and milk that were
COOKED together.


From: <GERVER@...> (Mike Gerver)
Date: Tue, 15 Feb 1994 4:15:11 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Eruv down announcements

In his posting in v11n67, Eitan Fiorino says that the reason for not
telling people that the eruv is down is in order to not have them violate
Shabbat be-meizid [on purpose], which would be worse than violating Shabbat
be-shogeg [by accident]. This would make sense only if you were sure that
telling them the eruv was down would not stop them from violating Shabbat

In fact, my understanding is that people who carry when the eruv is down
are not violating Shabbat at all, even be-shogeg, if they do not know the
eruv is down. This is because there is a chazakah [legal presumption] that
the eruv is up during Shabbat if it was up when it was checked before
Shabbat, and that chazakah gives people the right to carry on Shabbat.
They are not supposed to check the eruv on Shabbat, and the chazakah is
broken only if they happen to find out that the eruv is down. It therefore
makes perfect sense not to tell people the eruv is down, so as not to
inconvience them.

Another circumstance in which the chazakah would not apply is if there is
a big storm, with strong enough winds, or icy rain, so that it is likely
that part of the eruv would be knocked down. They were predicting such a
storm before last Shabbat, and the eruv hot line even advised not carrying
if it was not necessary. Fortunately, on Shabbat morning I walked home from
shul with Yitzchak Halberstam, who is a professional meteorologist who has
smicha. This was a perfect combination: from his meteorological expertise,
he was able to assure me that there would not be any winds strong enough
to be likely to knock down the eruv, and he was then able to posken that it
was OK to ignore the suggestion on the eruv hot line and to carry anyway.

Mike Gerver, <gerver@...>


From: <btanenb@...> (Robert J. Tanenbaum)
Date: Mon, 14 Feb 94 12:53:06 EST
Subject: Re: Libsinging

Lipsinging may be a very common professional practice -- Pavarotti
was accused of this a few years ago -- but I would certainly want
my money back.

Furthermore, if one of my children were in that choir and was instructed
to libsing, I would remove him from the performance. 
I expect to hear a live performance -- and I expect the performers to
give a live performance. I would want my children to learn to give
an honest performance and to strive for improvement and to learn to
do their best and recover from mistakes. It's my goal to teach my 
children that mistakes are part of life. Improvement is possible --
perfection is impossible. To make the performance so important that
you instruct children to not even try, is a very negative educational
value. I feel the same way about canned Bar Mitzva speeches which were
written by the rebbe. I would make an exception for the choir member
with a hoarse throat -- he can stand and lipsing rather than remaining
on the sidelines. But aside from that -- let them sing.
If the musical production is complicated that it must be done in a studio
and electronically mixed, then do a different arrangement or selection.
We can all listen to the record at home.

I agree with the original poster -- it is "geneva da'at"

Ezra Bob Tanenbaum	1016 Central Ave	Highland Park, NJ 08904
home: (908)819-7533	work: (212)450-5735
email: <btanenb@...>


From: Joseph Steinberg <steinber@...>
Date: Sun, 13 Feb 1994 22:15:32 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Miami Boys Choir

Lipsinging is lipsinging. Period. If a Choir Member publicly admits that 
Begun used CD's instead of live music -- well, then, perhaps action 
should be taken.... I am not sure how legal the practice is -- nad, as 
far as Halacha is concerned, there is not even a doubt about the presence 
of G'neivat Da'at... selling concert tickets to a Miami Boys Choir 
Concert imeans just that -- I can assure you that 99% if not more of the 
people who bought tickets bought them to hear LIVE MUSIC -- and not to 
hear CD's being played...AND IT WAS DONE INTENTIONALLY....

           |  Joseph (Yosi) Steinberg       |              <steinber@...>
  Shalom   |  972 Farragut Drive            |  <jstein@...>
  Uvracha! |  Teaneck, NJ 07666-6614        |               <jsteinb@...>
           |  United States of America      |       Tel: +1-201-833-YOSI(9674)


From: <YOSEF_BECHHOFER@...> (Yosef Bechhofer)
Date: Mon, 14 Feb 94 03:20:18 -0500
Subject: Pronunciations and Conversions

Rabbi Freundel posted recently two postings I take issue with because they
are simple pronouncements:

a) He said there is no Mesorah vis a vis Pronunciation. we've beat this issue
around quite a lot here recently (at my instigation) and I am sure most of us
recall that Reb Moshe zt"l in Igros Moshe and Rav Kook zt"l in Orach Mishpat
both say that there IS a Masorah on Pronunciation.

b) He said there is a Rambam on Kibud Av va'Em from a convert vis a vis
parents and that therefore a gentile parent may walk a ger tzedek child to the
chupa. Well, this is an extraordinary Rambam! Where is it? I am not skeptical,
just curious! BTW, at the only chupa of a ger tzedek I was at, the father (A
Jew who was married to a non-Jew - the son converted) was NOT allowed to walk
down (although this was done in a subtle way, with a Rabbi discreetly (in
Israel, where people mill around at the chupa, you can do this) coming between
chosson and father).

c) I have a comment on the psak of Reb Yoshe Ber zt"l being thrown around MJ
about yichud in cases of adoption. Everybody knows that psak is often highly
subjective to a case, and often extenuating circumstances exist. I am skeptical
as to whether the Rov wanted this psak necessarily publicized as a psak for the
masses. Could somebody verify that he indeed had in mind to publicize this?

[There are students of the Rav who knew him better than I, but from my
knowledge he always paskened for the specific case, and that was one of
the reasons he never published any of his piske halacha (the more
dominent reason being the Soloveichek tendency to not publish anything
until it was perfect). Avi, yr moderator]


From: Alan Zaitchik <ZAITCHIK@...>
Date: Tue, 15 Feb 94 06:11:04 -0500
Subject: Rambam on aggadah

Sorry if someone already made this point and I missed it.
As to what the Rambam thought of aggadic comments in shas, such as
curing snake bites by reciting certain formulas and so on, the GR"A
definitely believed the Rambam to be denying the truth of such statements
due to his philosophical commitments. See Yoreh Deah halac 177, note
13 in the Biur HaGR"A. Nothing could be more explicit! (Of course the
GR"A himself also goes on to claim that it is wrong to take these statements
only at their "pshat" meaning; instead we need to fathom their "pnimiyut
al derech ha'emet" (inner kabbalistic meaning) (if I remember the exact
wording correctly), rather than "al derech ha'filosophiya" (their philoso-
phical meaning). Thus the GR"A accepts the literal meaning and ADDS to it
a deeper explanation. The RAMBAM, according to the GR"A, denies the literal
meaning altogether. And he makes another mistake (according to the GR"A) 
in searching for a deeper meaning in philosophy, rather than in kabbalah.)
/alan zaitchik


From: <VWZEVG@...> (Zev Gerstl)
Date: 14 Feb 94 15:44:00 EST
Subject: Schindlers List

In a recent mailing the follwing question was brought up:
<Question: How does Halacha view making such a choice, do we say that we
<are able to choose because we are saving some lives - Pikuach
<Nefesh,(Danger to life) Pidyon Shvuim,(Saving captives) etc. or, do we say
<that we are sending those, not selected for life, to death and therefore it
<is tantamount to murdering them?
<Can we allow a Jew to make such a choice or can a non-Jew be permitted to
<do so?

Not being a Rav (nor a Rov) I would just like to mention a summary of a psak I 
read in a book called "Halachah and the Holocost". I don't remember many 
details as to names etc but I can get them for anyone who's interested. This 
story is extremely moving and sets very high standards.

In one of the Ghettos a mans son was arrested during an aktion. The man, 
knowing he could bribe a guard to let his son go but by doing this would 
condem whoever else was selected in his sons place put the question to the 
local Rov (here I think Rav is less appropriate). The Rov just turned away 
without answering. The man said to the Rov "I understand from your refusal to 
answer that it is wrong" and DID NOT SAVE HIS SON.

I don't know if the Rov was right or wrong. I do know that I don't think I 
wold have even bothered asking in such a situation. I doubt very much wether 
many of us would have the mesirat nefesh to stand up and make such a sacrifice
in such a situation. It is one of the stories I tell my children every year on 
Yom Ha'Zicaron for the shoah. One of these days I'll get through the story 
without crying.


From: Michael Broyde <RELMB@...>
Date: Mon, 14 Feb 94 03:20:30 -0500
Subject: Re: Yichud and Converts

For a teshuva that permits yichud between converts who are biologically
related, see iggrot moshe EH 4:64.  The question of can they also marry
each other is explictly discussed in Shulchan Aruch YD 269.  As a
generally rule, the Sages forbid these marriages lest people think that
converts have gone from a higher level of sanctity to a lower level
(from a religion that prohibits these activities to one that permits
them).  However, there are certain relationships that are permitted to
converts (even after this rabbinic decree) that would be normally


End of Volume 11 Issue 84