Volume 12 Number 29
                       Produced: Wed Mar 30  7:57:55 1994

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Baruch Dayan Emet
         [Steven Edell]
Ketubot Burning
         [Yisrael Medad]
maple syrup
         [Gerald Sacks]
Netilat Yadayim Cup
         [Irwin Keller]
Rabbi M. Cohn -- 2 humorous reminiscences
         [Alan Zaitchik]
Sacrifices and emotional disorders
         [saul djanogly]
Shmura matza other than at the Seder
         [Jeff Mandin]
The mail.jewish family
         [Sam Saal]
The mitzvah of matza and omer customs
         [Sean Philip Engelson]
         [Aleeza Esther Berger]


From: Steven Edell <edell@...>
Date: Mon, 28 Mar 1994 00:10:32 +0200 (IST)
Subject: Baruch Dayan Emet

     My mother finally succumbed to her illness & passed away Friday,
March 18th, 6 Nisan.  We had a complete, Orthodox funeral for her on
Monday, March 21st with a minyan & with all her close relatives saying
kaddish at the graveside.  I stayed with my relatives for two days, then
came back to Israel & finished my "Shiva" here.

[On behalf of the mail-jewish community, I express our wishes of nechama
to Steve and his family - HaMakom Yenachem Etchem Betoch Shaar Avlei
Tzion Ve'Yerushalaim. Mod.]

     There was one shocking aspect of all this.  I had called, on
recommendation, a funeral home near where we wanted the funeral, and the
Rabbi there quoted me over the phone the price of $4,000 for the
funeral.  We were astonished when we came to the funeral home, that not
only did they want the money immediately - before the service - but they
charged $5,200!  We are still in the midst of resolving this.

     Bottom line is, unfortunately, that when you feel someone in your
family is nearing their end, you _must_ shop around for the best prices
and services, just like you would with any other business (and believe
me, it IS a business).  It is VERY difficult (& there is very little
time) to do it afterwards, so any price comparing needs to be done
beforehand.  We were talking with someone "in the know" afterwards, who
said that some of the other funeral homes would take up to $10,000 for
essentially the same service we got for (should be less than) half that!

     I again thank all the mj'ers who supported me during this trying
time.  As a friend of mine said, "May the joys in life far outweigh the

Y'hi Zichrona Baruch - May her memory be for a blessing.

Steven Edell, Computer Manager   Internet:<edell@...>
United Israel Appeal, Inc                   <uio@...>
(United Israel Office)    **ALL PERSONAL**          Voice:  972-2-255513
Jerusalem, Israel        **OPINIONS HERE!**         Fax  :  972-2-247261
"From the depths of despair I called on you, my Lord" (Psalms 130)


From: MEDAD%<ILNCRD@...> (Yisrael Medad)
Date: Thu, 24 Mar 94 09:12 IST
Subject: Ketubot Burning

Just for people's information, the Women's Network here in Israel
held a public Ketubah burning in front of Heichal Shlomo on March 22
to protest the lack of perseverance of the Rabbinical system to untangle
problems related to agunot and other *shalom-bayit* difficulties.

Yisrael Medad


From: Gerald Sacks <sacks@...>
Date: Thu, 24 Mar 94 15:32:48 EST
Subject: maple syrup

Contrary to Josh Klein's comment in vol 12 #11, my understanding is that in
making kosher maple syrup, vegetable oil rather than lard is used as a
defoaming agent.  If this is the case, it would seem to answer Lazar Kleit's
question about the need for Pesach hashgacha on maple syrup.


From: Irwin Keller <keller@...>
Date: Wed, 23 Mar 1994 20:03:58 -0500
Subject: Netilat Yadayim Cup

[Too late for this year, but maybe we'll get some answers that will be
useful for people for next year - Mod.]

Can I use a Netilat Yadayim cup(Cup for ritual hand washing prior to eating
bread) that is made of clay year round including Pesah? The cup is used
exclusively for hand washing, and is never washed in the dishwasher but is
only rinsed after use. If the answer is "no!" is there a way to Kasher the
cup? The cup is glazed.

                       Irwin A. Keller


From: Alan Zaitchik <ZAITCHIK@...>
Date: Thu, 24 Mar 1994 09:06:49 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Rabbi M. Cohn -- 2 humorous reminiscences

M. Gerver posted a notice about the passing of Rabbi Cohn, former
principal of Maimonides School in Brookline, Mass. Since a lot of MJ
readers are former students of the school, perhaps we could use
mail.jewish to share some reminiscences and thus pay respect to Rabbi
Cohn z"l.

Rabbi Cohn had a zany sense of humor, which became apparent only as
years passed. At the time, when I attended Maimonides School, he seemed
anything but funny!  Two stories come to mind.

 In my junior year (1965!) a bunch of us brought water guns to school
and were having some fun in the hallway when all of a sudden Rabbi Cohn
materialized. He grabbed one of the water pistols out of someone's hand
and proceeded, deadpan, to act out his role: "Up against the wall!
Spread them! One move and your dead!" I guess we didn't realize at the
time just how much fun this must have been for him, and terror stricken
we did as told. He "arrested us" and lead us down to the office at the
point of his gun.
 Another story, from 8th grade, when the school was still in Roxbury.
My father called one Friday during the winter and asked Rabbi Cohn what
time school was being dismissed (early) so he could pick me up and drive
me home, saving me a good hour of bus and subway commuting time.  Rabbi
Cohn, who certainly knew my father well, refused to tell him: "Sorry but
how do I know you are Rabbi Zaitchik? Maybe you're a kidnapper!  I
cannot tell you that information over the phone." After some
negotiations they agreed that if my father would recite by heart the
first amud (page) of the tractate Ketubot then Rabbi Cohn would believe
that this indeed was he. And that's how I got a ride home that day!


From: <saul@...> (saul djanogly)
Date: Wed, 23 Mar 1994 16:33:47 -0500
Subject: Re: Sacrifices and emotional disorders

The Netziv in Haemek Davar on Vayikra Chap.2 verses 1&2 suggests that the 
4 different meal-offerings were to atone for 4 different kinds of emotional
disorders!This is a free translation-

'It is not explained why the meal-offerings were brought.It seems they
were brought to expiate for the corruption of the soul by negative
behaviours....  and since negative behaviours(midot) are caused by one
of four moods,a black mood which if it takes hold creates sadness,a
white mood which causes jaundice and excessive joy,a green mood which
creates envy and a red mood which creates anger.And in the time of the
Temple they knew which meal-offering was appropriate for which mood and
its corrupting effect on the soul....  And as we have explained that the
meal-offerings are brought on account of negative behaviours caused by
one of the mood disorders and that the illness/ disorder is itself
caused by sin and once the illness attacks it becomes more powerful and
disorientates him.As we have learnt ' the punishment of sin is
sin'i.e.the punishment consists of the mental disorder that in turn
causes more sin.As a result he needs 3 levels of expiation.

1.For the original sin that caused all this

2.To provide a therapy for his illness.(As David suggested to King Saul
to overcome his depression Samuel 1 chap 26)

3.For the additional sins caused by his mental illness,for although they
were caused by his illness if he had fought hard enough he could have
overcome it and the illness was therfore just another form of temptation
to which he succumbed.'

I think this is a fascinating passage.

By the way I am a big fan of the Netziv al Hatorah.He had a great
breadth of vision and historical insight as well as being a master of
Peshat and Halacha.  I have just finished reading 'From Volozhin to
Jerusalem ' in Ivrit ,the memoirs of his son,Rabbi Meir Bar Ilan which I
highly recommend(sadly out of print).

Are there any other Netziv fans on Mail-Jewish?  I would love to hear
from you.

Chag Kasher Vesameach

saul djanogly


From: Jeff Mandin <jeff@...>
Date: Thu, 24 Mar 94 12:16:34 -0500
Subject: Shmura matza other than at the Seder

I am unclear on the basis of the minhag(custom) of some people to eat only
shmura matza for all of Pesach.  It goes without saying that non-shmura 
matza is as non-chametz as shmura: shmura(ie. matza made from flour 
guarded from water contact from the time of cutting of the wheat) is a 
step better as the fulfillment of the Torah's commandment "you shall 
guard the matzot".

The mechaber in the Shulchan Aruch says shmura matza is preferable for 
"matzot mitva", ie. for the Seder.  Since many (all?) authorities hold
that eating matza during all eight days of Pesach counts as a mitzva,
it follows that eating shmura is preferable for the rest of Pesach as

If this line of reasoning is correct, it would seem there is no preference
for shmura when there is no mitzva fulfilled (eg. matza balls).  As
well, there is no reason for a person to avoid eating non-shmura if
eg. his host has no shmura handy.

- Jeff


From: Sam Saal <SSAAL@...>
Date: Tue, 29 Mar 94 13:42:00 PST
Subject: The mail.jewish family

While this is not a Halachic question or discussion, I hope people will
excuse this short digression.

I was moved by Steven Edell's follow-up letter in a recent issue of
mail.jewish as it showed, once again, what constitutes our extended
Jewish family and the importance and value of mail.jewish.

When you visit a far away place, in your own country or in others,
stopping in a shul is nearly a guarantee that you will be "picked up"
for hospitality known to our people since the time of Avraham.

When there is a problem that requires understanding or support, turning
to your fellow Jew, as Steven did, is natural.  And this forum is just
the modern extension of what has gone on all along.

Watching our fellow Jews grow in Yiddishkeit, grappling with all sorts
of issues - whether conversion, issues for Ba'alei Teshuvah, or the
finest points of Halacha - cannot but make us all grow to appreciate
both our place in the community and the growth in education we must all

Finally, the opportunity to watch people pass through life's events,
from the calamitous in Steve's case, to the joyous as we've seen with
Avi Feldblum and Eitan Fiorino, has been inspiring.

I hope others appreciate this resource as I do and I wish this whole
mail.jewish family a Chag Kasher V'sameach.

Sam Saal
Vayiphtach HaShem et Peah Ha'Atone


From: <engelson-sean@...> (Sean Philip Engelson)
Date: Tue, 22 Mar 1994 17:39:58 -0500
Subject: The mitzvah of matza and omer customs

The mitsvah of eating matsah on Pesach comes from two sources in the
Torah: "With matsot and marror they shall eat it [the pesach]" and "You
shall eat matsot seven days".  Most posqim hold that the positive
commandment to eat matsah applies only to the seder night (and perhaps
some hold only miderabanan today?).  Others, e.g, the Vilna Gaon hold
that the commandment holds all seven days, such that eating matsah after
the seder fulfils a qiyum mitsva.

Chag kasher vesameach!


From: Aleeza Esther Berger <aeb21@...>
Date: Thu, 24 Mar 1994 17:03:07 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Yiddish

>From: <leora@...> (Leora Morgenstern)
>On a related topic,  can anyone recommend a good Yiddish dictionary
>and a good Yiddish grammar book?

The basic Yiddish-English equipment is Uriel Weinriech's "COllege
Yiddish" and his 1-volume dictionary.  But these may be too 
elementary for answering your question about the eytemology of "gebroks".
Other books are "The History of the Yiddish Language" (a lot  more
fascinating than it sounds and a very scholarly work, but not
specifically a grammar book) and "Der Otsar
fun der Yiddisher Shprach" [The Treasury of the Yiddish Language]
which I think is a multivolume dictionary all in Yiddish.

Aliza Berger


End of Volume 12 Issue 29