Volume 14 Number 75
                       Produced: Mon Aug 15 22:50:46 1994

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Baruch Hashem l'Olam 14/65
         [Neil Parks]
Cheating and Curves
         [Jules Reichel]
Climbing the fence to see the game
         [Yossi Halberstadt]
         [David A Rier]
         [Aryeh Blaut]
         [Yosef Bechhofer]
G-d Pre-Knowledge vs. Free Will
         [Sam Juni]
G-d's Knowledge vs. Man's Knowledge
         [Robert Braun]
         [Stephen Phillips]
Mezonos Rolls
         [Harry Weiss]
Pasuk Fragments and Hagbah
         [Mechael Kanovsky]


From: Neil Parks <neil.parks@...>
Date: Thu, 11 Aug 1994 15:00:14 -0400
Subject: Re: Baruch Hashem l'Olam 14/65

         Art Werschulz <agw@...> said:
 >>I seem to recall that these verses date from the days when the
 >>synagogues were outside the towns.  These extra pesukim were inserted
 >>to give time for latecomers to catch up, so that everybody could go
 >>home together, which provided an extra measure of safety.  This was
 >>considered unnecessary on Shabbat or Yom Tov.

According to Philip Birnbaum, Bameh Madlikin (the Mishnah passage
dealing with materials that Shabbos oil lamps were made of before
candles became popular) serves the same purpose on Friday night.

NEIL PARKS   <neil.parks@...>


From: <JPREICHEL@...> (Jules Reichel)
Date: Wed, 10 Aug 1994 20:09:33 -0400
Subject: Cheating and Curves

Kevin Schreiber points out that it would be terribly unfair to fail everyone
when science courses have mean grades in the 40's, 50's, and 60's. This leads
to a justification of curving the grades. I think that the real "cheating"
is that the teacher did not succeed in teaching and can use curving to cover
up the failure. Teaching is not perfect. Testing is not perfect. Any of these
mechanisms can fail. An honorable teacher should first apologize for his 
failure. The results are invalid. Curving doesn't really fix anything. No
more knowledge is put in the student's mind because someone added 40 points
to his score. In the larger society they call it norming and everyone seems
to have discovered it. Base it on sex, race, origin, etc. To me it all seems
like cheating. I should admit that I too would take the gift of 40 points,
but it's not right. What's right is to fix the problem.


From: <fx_joe@...> (Yossi Halberstadt)
Date: Fri, 12 Aug 1994 09:48:17 GMT
Subject: Climbing the fence to see the game

In Volume 14 Number 72...
Jeremy Nussbaum (<jeremy@...>) wrote:

>Why is this particular case, at least at the late stage, not "ze ne'hene
>ve'ze lo chaser," i.e. "this one benefits and that one is none the worse
>off?"  The collector of the admissions would not get him as a paying
>customer, since he has no money.  No other paying customer is turned
>away.  I don't see this as a borrower.  I don't remember the fine points
>of when, if ever, znvlc is permitted, but it certainly is not
>actionable; he is not liable to compensate the owner after the fact.

I don't have it handy, but as I recall, the Gemorrah in Baba Kama
(towards the end of Perek Merrubah (?)) discusses somebody who stays in
someone else's property without permission.

I think that the conclusion is that you are not liable to pay _unless
the owner normally charges for staying in the property_.  To me this
seems similar to the case of the baseball game.

Disclaimer: it's nearly 10 years since I learnt this Gemorrah!

One other point:
In reference to the worldwide shuls/kosher restaurants database being set up:

In general I am not in favour of these potential 'tools in the hands of our
enemies'.  As I understand it, virtually anyone with internet access will
(eventually) be able to locate every shul in the world? After recent
experiences in London and Buenos Aires, I am not sure that this is desirable.
I believe that the Nazis (Y'Sh) used shul lists and the like to round up Jews;
I know that in my Shul (Golders Green Beis Hamedrash - 'Munks') we are very
careful about giving out the members' names and addresses lists.

Yossi Halberstadt			<halberstadtj@...>


From: David A Rier <dar6@...>
Date: Fri, 12 Aug 1994 08:49:46 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Conferences

About conferences on Shabbos-I'll leave it to more learned mj'ers to 
tackle the halachic issues.  However, as a veteran of 5 years of 
sociology and public helath conferences, I will mention that, when 
submitting a paper, I've always put in the cover letter   "As I am an 
orthodox Jewish Sabbath observer, I am unable to present this from late 
Friday aft. to Sat. night.  If another slot is unavailable, I will be 
forced, with regret, to withdraw the paper".  So far, I've
always gotten a non-Shabbos slot (this may be tougher at small 
conferences, but the big ones have been fine).  Also, about attending, 
I've never gone to conference events on Shabbos.  I don't know about 
other people, but when I go to a conference, I'm working.  I'm constantly 
thinking about which presentations bear on my research, looking for 
professors to collar into reading my manuscripts, etc.  In other words, 
it stops being Shabbos, regardless of issues of carrying, mikes, etc.  
Again, I've never discussed this with a rov (since I KNOW it destroys my 
Shabbos), and make no halachic claims.  CYLOR.   David Rier


From: Aryeh Blaut <ny000592@...>
Date: Fri, 12 Aug 1994 18:52:50 -0400
Subject: Curves

Personally, I'm in favor of doing away with grades altogether.  They
don't tell much at all (ie: does the student know what x, y & z mean?
Is the student able to do a, b, & c...)

Admittedly, I haven't been keeping up with my reading, so forgive me if
this has been said already: If we have to give grades, then we should at
least grade a student only compared to him/herself and not against
anyone else.

Aryeh Blaut


From: <sbechhof@...> (Yosef Bechhofer)
Date: Fri, 12 Aug 1994 00:54:58 -0400
Subject: Re: Emunah

In MJ 14:72 Eli Turkel began a discussion of Emuna. I would like to add
a negative observation. I attended fine Yeshiva elementary and High
Schools and never once heard from my Rabbeim a discussion on why we are
believing Jews. I actually explored this issue myself first in
Sha'alvim, when I had to give a class to some visiting high school
seniors, and I decided, why not talk about why we believe. Some years
later, I got into R. Noach Weinberg's "Lakewood" tapes which are a very
good introduction to our beliefs. Now, I go every year Elul time into
the freshman classes here in Skokie Yeshiva and try to help the kids
avoid the shortcoming I experienced. To them, its a whole new
concept. Nobody has ever spoken to them either about the Kuzari's line
of reasoning (the direct link to Sinai); The Printed Page in the Desert
Logic (I too like to use Dr. Turkel's example of the anomaly of water) -
basic stuff, which I think would make the entire practice of Judaism
more meaningful for the kids as kids, and later as adults.

I think schools are afraid that a little thought is a danegerous
thing. I think that attitude is erroneous. I think we should be more
secure in the legitimacy and logical consistencies that Yahadus

However, I am not so naive as to think that we can change the schools
and introduce Emuna curricula on a national basis (although I believe
that this does exist in some Yeshivot Bnei Akiva in Israel). It seems to
me however, that we can all raise the quality of Yiddishkeit by
discussing Issues in Emuna as parents with our children, as Rabbis with
our Congregants, and, most importantly, as friends with friends. One
need not be embarassed to speak about God and Torah miSinai, and it
certainly is a more uplifitng conversation than sports.

Which brings me to a related point. A teacher in one of the schools here
mentioned to me that he believes that kids in the school were more
profoundly affected by the retirement of Michael Jordan than the death
of the Lubavitcher Rebbe. Our kids have got to be weaned from the
intensive following of professional sports. Following sports clutters
the brain with completely useless distraction and focusses our kids away
from the growth that is key to Judaism.

In short, we need to cultivate independent thought and inquiry into the
foundations of Emuna and the Principles of Judaism. With proper
guidance, the risk is minimal, and the benefit immesurable.

Yosef Bechhofer


From: Sam Juni <JUNI@...>
Date: Fri, 12 Aug 1994 13:12:44 -0400
Subject: G-d Pre-Knowledge vs. Free Will

In a recent post, Mitch Berger ponders the question "Why do we need to
do anything, if G-d knows what we will do?  He proceeds to give a fairly
good explanation.  I think there is an easy short-cut to his argument.

Since G-d is not bound by time, we can assert that G-d knows what you
(will) do only because you (did) do it in the future. Hence, you have a
perfect choice of how to act, but G-d will "see" your actions and know
about them (in "your") past.

     Dr. Sam Juni                  Fax (212) 995-3474
     New York University           Tel (212) 998-5548
     400 East
     New York, N.Y.  10003


From: <REB@...> (Robert Braun)
Date: Thu, 11 Aug 1994 06:51:19 -0800
Subject: G-d's Knowledge vs. Man's Knowledge

In response to Sam Juni, I think you misunderstood my intent.  The point
I was trying to make is that the Torah is written for man's edification,
not simply for G-d's benefit.  It seemed to me that the original
discussion revolved around why the Akeidah was necessary since G-d
already knew the depth of Avraham's faith and, therefore, knew his
actions.  Instead, the story, I believe, should be seen as a means of
conveying the story and its lessons to man.


From: <stephenp@...> (Stephen Phillips)
Date: Thu, 11 Aug 1994 13:13:33 -0400
Subject: Re: Kaddish 

> From: David Griboff <TKISG02%<EZMAIL@...>
> However, I have a question about a similar topic: Kaddish.  The last two
> words of all of the 'paragraphs' are "V'imru Amein" .And say, Amen.
> However, there are many chazzanim who say (out loud) the "V'imru", but
> never say the "Amein" part until the rest of the congregation does.  From
> a grammatical point of view, this seems to be at odds with the meaning of
> what is being said.  The chazzan seems to be saying, "And say, ______", so
> therefore, the congregation should not be saying anything.  I have never
> seen any Siddur that seemed to imply that the "Amein" should be a
> 'congregation only' part of the prayer.  Any ideas?

I was in Bournemouth, England this past Pesach and the Minister/Chazan
there, Reverend Jeffrey Shisler, when "singing" Kaddish, would say
"Ve'Imru Omein" very quickly before the congregation chimed in with its
own "Omein". I asked him about this as I had never heard it done this
way before. He said that he took the words "Ve'Imru Omein" to be an
invitation by the Sheli'ach Tzibur to the congregation to say "Omein"
and that just to say "Ve'imru" and then join the congregation in saying
"Omein" would be meaningless.

Stephen Phillips


From: <harry.weiss@...> (Harry Weiss)
Date: Sun, 14 Aug 94 00:45:04 
Subject: Mezonos Rolls

Stephen Phillips raises the question of Mezonos rolls on airlines.  For
years we have been hearing the problem of rolls on the Kosher meals
marked Mezonos and this being unacceptable since when one is Kovea
Seudah (making a meal) with this roll one would still have to wash and
make Hamotzi.  This is situation has always bothered me.  One group of
Rabbis is certifying a meal that marks a roll as Mezonos, while other
Rabbis are saying this is unacceptable.  The airline travel situation is
one where it is very difficult (if not impossible) to get up and wash
because of carts in the aisles, etc.  Why don't the supervising agencies
encourage the airline caterers to make rolls or substitutes that would
never require washing.  This could be accomplished with rice, corn or
potato flour.  Another possibility would be some sort of corn tortilla.
Just food for thought.



From: <KANOVSKY@...> (Mechael Kanovsky)
Date: Thu, 11 Aug 1994 15:00:10 -0400
Subject: Re: Pasuk Fragments and Hagbah

On the subject of what is said during "hagba'ha" Rav Baruch Epstein (the
torah temimah) in his book "Baruch She'amar al hatfilah" says that one
should only say "vezot hatorah asher sam mosheh lifnei bnei
yisrael". The other part of what is said i.e. "al pi hashem biyad
mosheh" should not be said for two reasons. One is that is is only part
of a pasuk and two is that the place where that part of the pasuk is
written has no connection to the torah, meaning that it is not talking
about the sefer torah in that pasuk.  mechael kanovsky


End of Volume 14 Issue 75