Volume 13 Number 15
                       Produced: Thu May 19 23:49:24 1994

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Address in Orthodox Couples
         [Sam Juni]
Artscroll Siddur
         [Yechiel Pisem]
Bamidbar prior to Shavuot
         [Jerrold Landau]
Bris and Bilirubin
         [Cathleen Greenberg]
Daas Torah
         [Jeff Woolf]
Electricity and Shabbat
         [Joel Goldberg]
Joseph and Interpreting Dreams
         [Michael Shimshoni]
Modim DeRabban
         [Yisrael Herczeg]
Mohel and Bili-Rubin Tests
         [Esther R Posen]
Parsheot and Holidays
         [Michael Broyde]
Takana or Gezeira?
         [David Charlap]
Tanachic/Talmudic info. on CD Rom
         [Manny Lehman]
Water Meters on Shabbat
         [Eric W. Mack]


From: Sam Juni <JUNI@...>
Date: Wed, 18 May 1994 13:11:25 -0400
Subject: Address in Orthodox Couples

     I noticed an interesting style in the way spouses address each other
among Orthodox Jews (Ahkenazi) particularly those to the right of Modern
Orthodox and Yeshivish. I am fairly sure the style is European in origin.
Instead of using the first name, spouses will address each other most
often using the role of "Totty" or "Mommy" (Dad of Mom). I am not sure
how such couples converse before the first child is born -- maybe they

    Another style I noticed was one where roles are used. This is the
mode most noticed when the spouse is being referred to in conversation
with another person. Here, references may include "The Doctor", "The
Rav", or "The Rebbitzen" (the latter often used even when the woman is
technically not a Rebbitzen). Occasionally, I have heard "My Rav" or "My
Rebbitzen" as a close synonym for husband or wife (presumably the latter
terms may be too coarse). Correlated with this style, is a tendency to
refrain from second person pronouns, so that only the respectful third
person form is used.

    I picked up a more extreme style among the Bobover Chassidim. They
use code words of "Her Nor" (Listen here) and "Zug Nor" (Pray tell) to
get the attention of the husband and wife respectively. The terms are
never used as such to non-spouses.

    Finally, I am almost sure that in some circles in Williamsburg, there
is no linguistic mechanism acceptable to address your spouse. You just
begin your sentences without salutation.

   My intuitive sense is that issues of modesty, "Al Tarbeh Sicha Im Isha
and styles of European/Victorian ettiquette may be extant here. I wonder
if we can get input either from some scholars in the area out there, or,
perhaps, from one who grew up under these linguistic conditions and can
pinpoint their rationale.

  Dr. Sam Juni                      Fax: (718) 338-6774
  N.Y.U.   400 East
  New York, N.Y.   10003


From: Yechiel Pisem <ypisem@...>
Date: Thu, 19 May 1994 19:33:39 -0400
Subject: Re: Artscroll Siddur

As per the posting by, I think, Marc Meisler about the Artscroll Siddur:

I think that it is very good.  The English translation, you must admit, 
is quite down-to-earth and the print is quite easily readable.  My 
complaints are the following:  A>What is the grammatical gender form of 
"Mitzvah"?  I believe it is the female gender.  Artscroll, however, wrote 
in the "Yehi Rotzon" the words "Mitzvos HaTeluyim".  That, I believe, is 
wrong.                               ^        ^^^ 

The other is that the correct form of the Brocha in Shmoneh Esrei would 
be "Es Tzemach, Dovid Avdecha"--Tzemach being another name for Dovid (see 
Shmuel I/II)

Kol Tuv and Gut Shabbos,
Yechiel Pisem


From: <LANDAU@...> (Jerrold Landau)
Date: Thu, 19 May 94 09:45:06 EDT
Subject: Bamidbar prior to Shavuot

A previous post noted that Bamidbar always comes out on the Shabbat prior
to Shavuot.  This is true most of the time, but not all of the time.  In
rare circumstances, I think it is when there is a leap year, and the
prior Rosh Hashana was on Thursday, Nasso will come out on the week before
Shavuot.  That is the only scenario when Mattot Massei are split up outside
of Israel.

Jerrold Landau


From: Cathleen Greenberg <CGREENBE@...>
Date: Thu, 19 May 1994 11:24:02 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Bris and Bilirubin

David Lee Makowsky asks:
>>Since the Billy-Rubin obviously was not
>>around when the halchas surrounding the postponement of a bris were
>>being formulated, there can't be anything key about a certain
>>Billy-Rubin level in the halacha, or can there be?

Since with a high or even high side of normal bilirubin level skin changes 
to various shades of yellow, the halacha is probably based on a discussion 
of a baby boy's color.  The halacha does discuss type of jaundice (yellow 
skin) as well as whether an incubator was necessary (usually exposure to 
daylight is enough - I will explain this below) as well as whether exchange 
transfusion was necessary.  I am assuming that your son needed no medical 

There are two types of bilirubin: direct and indirect.  We measure direct 
and total - newborn babies normally only have indirect.  THe exposure to 
sunlight helps conjugate the bilirubin, so that the body can clear it. 
Jaundice happens when we get above a certain level of bilirubin - this can 
still be in the normal range.  Your mohel may be extending what he knows 
about jaunice to include levels of bilirubin that cause jaundice.

Chaya Greenberg


From: Jeff Woolf <F12043@...>
Date: Tue, 10 May 1994 13:17:33 -0400
Subject: Re: Daas Torah

I fully endorse Eli Turkel's response on Daas Torah And recommend his
article in Tradition. I caution about fully accepting Kaplan's article
insofar as it relates to Rav Soloveitchik.  The last person in the world
to make ex cathedra, binding policy statemnens was the Rov. I also
recommend Mendel Piekarz' book on Polish Hassidism between the Wars
which raises the obvious objection to Daas Torah from the almost
unanimous prophecy by the Gedolim that nothing would happen to the Jews
of Europe so that going to America or Israel was wrong.

                              Jeff Woolf


From: <goldberg@...> (Joel Goldberg)
Date: Tue, 17 May 1994 04:24:16 -0400
Subject: Electricity and Shabbat

  <turkel@...> (Eli Turkel) wrote:
>      I recently attended a conference at Bar Ilan (cosponsered by Tsomet)
> on halakhah and electricity and some topics brought up were relevant to
> some recent discussions on mail.jewish. 
>     Examples include a wheel chair that is constantly on, non-dynamic

As a remark, my wife has one of these wheelchairs. She doesn't use it because
it always has to be moving by some perceptable amount. It's ok for walks, but
useless as a way of getting from point A to point B. Which just goes to show
that the best work requires three parties: A knowledgeable Rav, a frum
scientist, and the person who will actually use the device.


From: Michael Shimshoni <MASH@...>
Date: Thu, 19 May 94 17:16:07 +0300
Subject: Re: Joseph and Interpreting Dreams

David Charlap wrote:

>I don't think Joseph's interpreting the butler's & baker's dreams were
>the source for his "hubris" here, regardles what his language was.  I
>think it's the fact that he asked the butler to remember him.  In
>other words, he placed trust in the butler to spring him from prison,
>rather than trust God to do it.

I have heard the same argument  before.  I do not understand it.  Have
not  many important  Jewish leaders  and Rabbis  pleaded with  gentile
rulers for their  fellow Jews? Were they also sinning  by doing a deed
and not passively "place their trust  in God"? Is one not supposed not
to rely on miracles?

Michael Shimshoni


From: Yisrael Herczeg <heichal@...>
Date: Thu, 19 May 1994 17:53:18 -0400
Subject: Modim DeRabban

What Mark Steiner refers to as the "obviously correct" translation of *al 
she-onu modim lach*, "because we are [now] giving thanks to you," is 
indeed more or less the translation which appears in the Metzudah Siddur. 
It does not conform, however, to the view of the Ri MiGash. In She'elot 
uTeshuvot Ri MiGash no. 99, he understands it as, "beyond that which we 
give thanks to you"; that is, we thank you even more than we do in the 
formal nusach of tefillah. Failure to agree with Mr. Steiner's view 
should not be attributed to "theologically based linguistic blindness."
Yisrael Herczeg


From: <eposen@...> (Esther R Posen)
Date: 19 May 94 14:29:11 GMT
Subject: Re: Mohel and Bili-Rubin Tests

I have no knowledge of the halacha vis-a-vis when one can do a
brit-milah, however I do have some impressions from experience with my
sons.  I believe that the "color" of the baby that will make a mohel
able to do a brit has to do with his "mesorah" from the mohel he learned
mila from.  I believe the Billi Rubin tests allow them to be more
lenient than the appearance test.  I.e if the Bili Rubin test is lower
that a certain number or on its way down a mohel may do a bris DESPITE
the appearance of the baby.  As far as the disagreement between the
doctor and the mohel, I believe it is the mesorah of the mohel which he
will not deviate from which causes the disagreement with the doctor.

Esther Posen


From: Michael Broyde <RELMB@...>
Date: Thu, 19 May 1994 17:53:15 -0400
Subject: Parsheot and Holidays

A number of writers mentioned that the parsheot come out in relationship
to certain holidays, but were uncertain where these rules are found.
They are quoted in Orach Chaim 428:4.


From: <david@...> (David Charlap)
Date: Thu, 19 May 1994 17:53:24 -0400
Subject: Re: Takana or Gezeira?

I've been noticing a lot of postings (especially regarding the Syrian
community's decisions on conversion) that use the word "Takana" to
mean "rabbinic prohibition".  I thought a "takana" is much stronger
than this, and that only the Tanaim (rabbis of the mishna) had the
authority to make takanot.

After the period of the Tanaim, rabbinic prohibitions were not as
powerful as takanot, and were then known as gezeirot.

So why are people using the word "takana" when referring to modern-
day prohibitions?


From: Manny Lehman <mml@...> (Meir M \(Manny\) Lehman)
Date: Wed, 18 May 1994 16:43:49 +0000
Subject: Tanachic/Talmudic info. on CD Rom

Mechy will find all he is looking for and much more on the CD Rom disk(s)
put out by the Archives?She'elot U'tshuvot project at Bar Ilan U. Suggest
he contacts Uri Schild at <schild@...> the project head for
details. Their product is available for PC and PC clones. I am still
waiting for the Macintosh version.

Prof. M M (Manny) Lehman
Department of Computing, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine
180 Queen's Gate, London SW7 2BZ, UK. - Phone: +44 (0)71 589 5111, ext. 5009
Fax.:  +44 (0)71 581 8024 - email: <mml@...>


From: <ce157@...> (Eric W. Mack)
Date: Tue, 17 May 1994 23:07:33 -0400
Subject: Water Meters on Shabbat

Cleveland Heights (Ohio) Water Dept. recently installed electronic
water meters.  It is a Badger Meter Model 25.  Is this in use in
other cities?  Has anyone researched whether this is a problem on

Eric Mack and/or Cheryl Birkner Mack


End of Volume 13 Issue 15