Volume 16 Number 14
                       Produced: Wed Oct 26 22:40:16 1994

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

"Gender Equity" in Torah education
         [Yaakov Menken]
Maarat Hamachpela
         [David Kramer]
MJ'ers on dialysis
         [Mark Katz]
Oops - Shofar on Shabbat
         [Danny Geretz]
Racism, et al.
         [Zvi Weiss]
Recommended Talmud Text
         [Sam Juni]
Repeating Words (2)
         [Philip Ledereic, David Steinberg]
stan tenen's comments on the Septuagint
         [Moshe J. Bernstein]
Using Force to Prevent One from Sinning
         [Michael Broyde]
Wearing watches on Shabbat
         [Warren Burstein]


From: Yaakov Menken <ny000548@...>
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 94 23:49:55 -0400
Subject: "Gender Equity" in Torah education

My wife teaches in a day school which considers itself "modern" and in
tune with modern-day issues and values.  Therefore, it would seem that
they would readily acknowledge that equity in the workplace is not
merely a "feminist issue" but only right and appropriate.

So this evening, I got quite a shock: she showed me the "salary
supplements" that the school provides.  For example, a teacher who stays
with the school for 5 years gets a $750 bonus yearly, a Bachelor's
degree is worth $500, and an advanced degree (a Master's like hers, or
presumably even a PhD) is worth $1,000.  [Incidentally, the pay scale
provides for a salary increase of $4-500 yearly.]

Meanwhile, Semicha is worth $5,000.  [Semicha is Rabbinic ordination.
Today, it requires knowledge of several areas of Jewish law - and is
rarely granted to someone without several years of post-HS Yeshiva

Now, I do not doubt the value of Semicha, nor the value to the school of
being able to say that it has such-and-so number of genuine,
board-certified Rabbis on staff.  Nor am I underestimating the
difficulty of acquiring it.  But $5,000?  Is knowing how to shecht a cow
k'das u'k'din really as valuable as _12_ years of classroom experience
in transmitting a love of learning and Torah values to the next
generation?  Is it _five_times_ as valuable as a Master's or EdD
(Educational Doctor) in terms of skill as an educator?

Now if they were to place a certain value on each year of post-HS spent
in a Yeshiva, I would understand.  And we definitely should value the
intensity of Torah learning more than an equal number of years spent
(l'havdil) in ivy-covered towers [I carry a Princeton degree, and am not
inviting flames], or even a seminary (even secular educators have agreed
that nothing is as demanding as the schedule at a full-time Yeshiva).
But it would appear to me that "relative worth" does not justify this
degree of inequity.

I'm curious whether this is common, or justifiable (I mean that, I could
be missing something).

Yaakov Menken                                 <menken@...>
(914) 356-3040  FAX: 356-6722                 <ny000548@...>
Project Genesis, the Jewish Renewal Network   <genesis@...>
P.O. Box 1230, Spring Valley, NY 10977


From: David Kramer <davidk@...>
Date: Wed, 26 Oct 1994 09:32:49 +0200 (IST)
Subject: Maarat Hamachpela

Someone inquired about the closure of the Tomb of the Patriarchs -
the following was reported in Israel Line 25 Oct 94:
> Tomb of Patriarchs Set to Open Next Week
>   YEDIOT AHARONOT reported that security sources told West Bank
> settler leaders that the Tomb of the Patriarchs will reopen next
> week.
>  Construction of new security measures at the site is nearly
> complete, with video cameras, metal detectors and loudspeakers
> being installed. Prayers will not be allowed after 9 p.m., as
> previously permitted.

[  David Kramer                       |  INTERNET: <davidk@...>  ]
[ Motorola Communications Israel Ltd. |  Phone (972-3) 565-8638 Fax 565-9507 ]


From: Mark Katz <mark@...>
Date: Wed, 26 Oct 94 08:51:20 GMT
Subject: MJ'ers on dialysis

Are there any readers out there on dialysis machines.

A close friend with severe kidney problems has just been told that his
eyesight is on its way out and that he will have to go onto peritoneal
dialysis (he has just had the 'tube put in')

He is naturally very distressed/concered and I would like to help by 
forwarding words of encouragment from other Jewish people who are (or know
of someone close) who is going through the same thing.

He is not yet on internet, but we are working on it. In the meantime
I will forward mail and he may use the phone too!

Thanks in advance


From: starcomm!imsasby!dgeretz (Danny Geretz)
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 94 08:34:26 EDT
Subject: Oops - Shofar on Shabbat

I checked my source for the hypothetical shofar posting last night, and
it turns out that I was (partly) wrong.

The reason that we don't blow shofar on Rosh Hashanah that falls on
Shabbat is not because blowing the shofar is a melacha (prohibited work
on Shabbat), but because we are afraid that someone might carry it in
reshut harabim (public domain) to learn how to blow it.  (Kehati in
perush mishnayot Rosh Hashana chapter 4 mishna 1 brings this down from
the gemara (I would assume Rosh Hashana)).

Nothing is said about carrying in order to actually fulfill the mitzvah.
It is interesting to note, however, that the case chosen is carrying in
order to learn how to blow the shofar rather than the (In my mind, at
least) more likely case that the shofar was forgotten at home & needs to
be carried to shul.  This might be because one can always *go home* to
blow the shofar, therefore avoiding the problem.  In any event, my
previous posting is not a proof of anything, one way or the other.

Danny Geretz


From: Zvi Weiss <weissz@...>
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 1994 13:12:26 -0400
Subject: Racism, et al.

Michael Broyde asserts the possibility of an "acceptable abortion" as
opposed to one that halacha requires.  According to those who treat the
"permit" to have an abortion as based or associated with Piku'ach
nefesh, it is difficult to understand such a construct.  If the abortion
is based upon a mandate of piku'ach nefesh, it would appear to be
required -- based upon the mandate of saving a life.  While not everyone
holds that way, there is sufficient halachic opinion in this area that I
would be VERY hesitant to state that there could be such a thing as an
"acceptable abortion" that was not mandated by halacha...

I general, I am very cautious about stating when halachic "demands" are
"mere suggestions", etc.  If the halacha "demands" something of us, I am
very hesitant to state that it is really "not so binding".. It seems to me
that when the halacha is "not so demanding", the halacha makes that clear.

To state that he is  not certain whether we would follow the halacha -- as 
opposed to the Fundamentalist view -- is quite upsetting to this writer.  If
the halacha mandates something, we follow the halacha, if there is a conflict,
we consult a posek who will tell us WHAT THE HALACHA STATES to do in such a
case -- not simply disregard the halacha because of the "fundamentalist"
point of view.



From: Sam Juni <JUNI@...>
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 94 23:58:21 EST
Subject: Recommended Talmud Text

There is a great series of books called "Master a Mesikhta" by Rabbi
Nachman Cohen.  It is user friendly to the hilt, and has levels designed
for beginners as well as the pro's. I find the general schematics most
suited for easy assimilation and organized analysis.  I happen to know
Rabbi Cohen's works on Hallacha and on the Philosophy of Science -- this
fellow knows his stuff, and his credentials are impeccable.

The latest Tractate covered is Bava Basra, the current Daf Yomi
Mesikhta. The work provides a clear exposition of the Talmudic Laws of
Partnership, Real Estate, Contracts, Inheritance, Property Disputes,
etc.  The basic rishonim commentaries are comprehensively presented and
synthesized. The units on practical Hallacha are detailed spanning from
the Rambam, through the Shulchan Aruch, up to and including R. Moshe
Feinstien's writings.

I have seen the Sforim at my local Hebrew Book Store.  I also found a
flyer showing "Torah Lishmah Institute" as an agent, located at 25
Clifton Ave, Yonkers, NY 10705.  Their price for the 2-volume Bava Basra
set is $55 (incl.  post. & handlng). This is a winner!


From: Philip Ledereic <ledereic@...>
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 94 22:52:36 EDT
Subject: Re: Repeating Words

> >From: Jonathan Katz <frisch1@...>
> 2) There are many other instances of repetition. The primary one that comes
from Hallel

I think these words are so important, the particular prayers, we are
told to say them more than once 1) to stress them (ie they are
important) 2)in case we made a mistake while saying them the first time
we have a second (some cases 3 time eg. the verses H' tzivaos emanu; H'
tzivaos ashrei adam; H' hoshea) to get to say them correctly.

In the places that repeating is extra, I agree with Elie Rosenfeld, it
is a tircha d'tziburra (burden on the public)- If I am at a shul with a
chazan, I am happy he finished the word the first time (after shlepping
it out).  If he repeats it a second time, I can't stand it, such a


From: David Steinberg <dave@...>
Date: Wed, 26 Oct 1994 01:33:16 +0100
Subject: Repeating Words

Jonathan Katz raises certain issues with respect to repeating words.  I
think he's right so far as repeating a word because the chazan
mispronounced it or lacked kavana - concentration- the first time
around.  But the fact that under that circumstance you can repeat
doesn't support the premise that you should repeat.  it just means you
have to do it right.  furthermore, when the tune dominates, it may be
harder to concentrate properly.

To take the analysis further I'll go back to my previous post.
Repeating that is in the form W1 W2 W2 W3 is generally less of a problem
than W1 W2 W3 W2 W4.  The latter can readily lead to distortions in the
meaning of the tefilla - prayer.  Or it might just garble the intended
meaning.  In any case chazanus should never take precedence over

Jonathan is also on target about an individual adding personal prayers.
But again, those prayers are assumed to be meaningful.  The fact that
while composing a tefilla you inadvertantly repeat a word, or even
purposely repeat a word for emphasis, does not justify purposely
repeating wods to fit the tune, much less garbling phrases.

As others have noted, L'Ayla U'L'Ayla is an intensifier that makes sense
in context.

Dave Steinberg


From: Moshe J. Bernstein <mjbrnstn@...>
Date: Wed, 26 Oct 1994 10:19:26 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Re: stan tenen's comments on the Septuagint

can't we get our facts straight? the passage about the day of the _targum 
hashivim_ (the "parent" of the Septuagint) being analogous to the day 
of making the Golden Calf is in Soferim 1:8-9 (also reference in Megillat 
Taanit Batra regarding fast decreed on the purported day of the translation).
The Sanhedrin did not make the translation. The reason that the day is 
considered particularly harsh is not clear, and the version of the 
incident in the Bavli (Megilla 9a-b) does not contain the negative 
judgment and might even be said to render a positive verdict. even the 
text in Soferim, which seems to be discussing two stories about 
translation (although they may be different versions of the same 
incident) has the positive comment about the identity of all the 
translations (quoting from memory, i believe the text reads, "natan 
HKBH 'etsah belev kol ehad ve-ehad ve-khivnu kulam le-de`a ahat"). there 
is a variety of possibilities for the discrepancy in judgment: 
geographical, chronological, a combination thereof, etc., but the 
assertion by stan tenen as to the reason for the rabbinic reluctance to 
approve of the translation remains just that, unproven assertion. 
especially when rabbinic literature contains divergent statements on an 
issue, it is particularly misleading to postulate an unproven and simplistic
(although not implausible) reason for one side and then to assert that 
it is _the_ rabbinic position.
moshe bernstein


From: Michael Broyde <RELMB@...>
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 94 13:06:09 EDT
Subject: Using Force to Prevent One from Sinning

 Marc Shapiro's assertion abouthe the use of force to prevent a person
from sinning is partially correct.  Jewish law clearly allows the use of
force to prevent a person from sinning and it also allows the use of
force to teach a person who repeatedly sins that sinning has real world
consequences.  Thus, to use the Yam Shel Shlomo's famous case, a person
who hits other people repeatedly (ie runs up to people and kicks them in
the knee and then runs away) can be kicked as a form of rettribution so
as to deter this conduct in the future.  So too, one may punish one's
adult children if one catches them hitting another kid (this may not be
advisable in many circumstances for reasons beyond the scope of this

Thus, a person who sees another person sinning bein adam lechavoro in a
consistent way may use force to deter this activity.  This is true
whether the force is used against a husband, wife, child, stranger,
rabbi or so on.  Rama states CM 421:13 "anyone who sins that one can
control one may hit them to seperate them from sin; Sema asserts that
this is a general principle of deterence.  See also Aruch Hashulchan.


From: <warren@...> (Warren Burstein)
Date: Wed, 26 Oct 1994 05:42:34 GMT
Subject: Re: Wearing watches on Shabbat

Ellen Golden writes:

>I, for reasons not even remotely relating to Shabbos, do not wear a
>watch at all (the band constricts and hurts my very sensitive wrists).
>I find this a VERY liberating thing.  I would think that anyone who
>regularly wears a watch during the week would find doing without it a
>liberation for Shabbos.  There are many ways to figure out what time
>it is, and there are often clocks within view.  The sun itself, of
>course, or the slant of the light, should alert someone who needs to
>get to mincha that the time is drawing near....

I want to make it clear that I'm not criticizing anyone who wants to
not wear a watch on Shabbat, so long as they remember that they are
doing so voluntarily.

I, too, would find it very liberating to not wear a watch, liberating
from getting anywhere on time.  Sure, if it's not overcast, I can
guess the time within an hour or so.  So if I run into someone on the
way to shul, do I have time to stop and discuss the parasha, or do I
have to keep going?  There are no clocks on streetcorners, and I do
like to get to mincha at least in time for it to be over, since I
bring the cake for Seudah Shlishit, if I'm not there people may go

 |warren@         bein hashmashot, in which state are the survivors
/ nysernet.org    buried?


End of Volume 16 Issue 14