Volume 17 Number 54
                       Produced: Tue Dec 27 23:31:26 1994

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Burial of Frum People in a Separate Area
         [Eliyahu Teitz]
Computer Codes in the Torah (3)
         [Yaakov Menken, Hayim Hendeles, Warren Burstein]
Conservative Kashrut
         [Elise Braverman]
Conservative Rabbis
         [Yosef Bechhofer]
Eating in a Conservative Shul
         [Esther R Posen]
Microphones and Kashrus
         [Mark Press]
Non-Jewish Conversions
         [Eliyahu Teitz]
Torah code software
         [Shoshana Benjamin]


From: <EDTeitz@...> (Eliyahu Teitz)
Date: Mon, 26 Dec 1994 17:04:13 -0500
Subject: Re: Burial of Frum People in a Separate Area

in response to dov shapiro in 17:50 

in shulchan aruch, yoreh deah 362:5, based on a g'mara sanhedrin 47a,
the mechaber ( literally author, r. y. karo ) writes:

one does not bury a wicked person ( rasha ) next to a righteous person
(tzadik ), not even a very wicked person ( rasha chamur ) next to a
lesser wicked person ( rasha kal ), nor a righteous person ( tzadik )
and certainly not an average person ( beynoni ) next to an exceptionally
righteous person( chasid muflag ). rema adds that one is permitted to
bury a baal t'shuva next to an absolute righteous person( tzadik gamur),
and shach adds but not next to a righteous person ( chasid ).

so much for the sources.  it is much harder to define who fits into what
category.  there are many cemeteries that have separate areas for those
who kept shabbat and those who didn't.  but beyond that, i personally
have not seen any other gradations.

eliyahu teitz


From: Yaakov Menken <ny000548@...>
Date: Mon, 26 Dec 94 21:28:08 -0500
Subject: Re: Computer Codes in the Torah

>One question that I have is: Rabbi Mechanic kept referring to the use of
>"super-computers" to do the searching.
>What level of hardware is really needed to try and
>either confirm their results or obtain new results?

What may have taken a "super-computer" in the beginning of their
research may have been on a desktop by the end - I'm not absolutely
certain, but I seem to recall that Doron Vitztum did much of the testing
on the computer in his apartment - a 286.  Software to look for minimum
skips is already available, and I think it likely that better stuff will
be created now that the paper is out in the public domain.

Searching for minimum skips is pretty easy, but it's creating the
matrices between various words that takes time.  _That's_ the software
I'd like to see.

Yaakov Menken

From: Hayim Hendeles <hayim@...>
Date: Mon, 26 Dec 94 14:09:47 -0800
Subject: Computer Codes in the Torah

I have run these searches on my old 286 computer; and simple searches
can be done in a matter of seconds. (Well, a good couple of seconds on a
286 anyway) However, not all search programs are created equal.  I have
found some of the poorer ones to be so slow on my 286 that they were not
practical - although it might be plausible on a 90mhz pentium.

But, with a half-decent program on a pentium, you should be able to run
a fair amount of simple searches.

If you wanted to duplicate the results of the paper, I suspect it would
take you some number of weeks, running 24 hours a day to duplicate. This
is because there were so many combinations of things that they were
looking for, numerous control texts, plus one of the most interesting
tests involved carrying out all these searches over 1 million
IMHO even more significant then the algorithm used, is the text used.
There is a public domain version of Genesis available (in Hebrew), which
appears to be "fairly accurate" --- for some definition of the word
fairly. Nonetheless, for sophisticated analysis, one would like a copy
of the text which is "certified". At one point in time, there was a
vendor selling a search program with an electronic copy of the Torah
that was certified by the Vaad ST"M --- unfortunately, that cost $$$.

If anyone knows of the availablility of low-cost certified texts of the
Torah, we would all love to hear from you.

[As an aside, I *have heard* that Rabbi Heineman has ruled that even if
I were to compare a certified text with the public domain version, it
would be prohibited to publicize the results as this would deprive the
seller of the certified text of future sales. ]

Hayim Hendeles

P.S. I once bought a search program from Kaballah Software in New
Jersey.  The program was relatively inexpensive, and did a fair amount
of things other then simple searches (even if it was a little slow on a
286!).  I would recommend those who are interested in purchasing such a
program to contact Kaballah -- unfortunately, I do not know their Email
address [if someone knows it, I would like to know it].  STANDARD
DISCLAIMER: I have no relationship with Kaballah Software other then as
a happy customer.

[Kaballah Software is found on Shamash. Their email address is:
<kaballah@...>, and they are also available on the main
Shamash Home Page. STANDARD non-DISCLAIMER: Alan Lustiger of Kaballah
software is a long time mail-jewish reader, fellow Highland Park'er and
friend. Mod]

From: <warren@...> (Warren Burstein)
Date: Tue, 27 Dec 94 12:25:06 IST
Subject: Re: Computer Codes in the Torah
Newsgroups: israel.mail-jewish

In addition to getting the text of the article (it might be tough if
it has equations, someone would either have to format them in ascii,
or code it in TeX - hopefully it was written in TeX) it would be great
if we could get the actual data and programs that they used.

[The data probably is not that hard, I believe that is described in the
article and rabbi Mechanic seemed to give a complete enough description
in his talk. The program may be a different story. Avi]

 |warren@         an Anglo-Saxon." -- Stuart Schoffman
/ nysernet.org


From: <ELBRAVERMAN@...> (Elise Braverman)
Date: Tue, 27 Dec 1994 13:45:44 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Conservative Kashrut

Regarding Jm Phillips posting of eating in a Conservative Shul with a
Rabbi who uses a microphone, would he eat there is the Rabbi didn't use
the microphone? It seems that it would be more fruitful to find out what
standard of Kashrut the Shul and observed rather then just discrediting
it on the basis of a microphone. There are many Conservative Shuls who
do not go by the previously mentioned Teshuvot (Re: wine, cheese and
bread) - while of course others do.

Regarding Camp Ramah's level of Kashrut, I spent 2 summers at the Ramah
in the Poconos and know that the level of Kashrut was up to any
"Orthodox" standard - all reliable hechsured products, 2 seperate
kitchens, machmer of re-Kashuring or utensils which can be
re-Kashrued. I would hate to think that just because an institution is
affiliated with a specific mouvement, that that institution is
considered not to be Kosher.  I could also explain the level of Kashrut
at JTS, but there are others on the list who already eat here, (and
don't for that matter) so I am not so inclined.

In reality, I know that institutions affiliated with whatever mouvement
or religious group get labeled out of hand, however, it seems to me that
with careful checking and asking a few questions a lot of problems can
be avoided.

Elise Braverman


From: <sbechhof@...> (Yosef Bechhofer)
Date: Tue, 27 Dec 1994 09:08:22 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Conservative Rabbis

Eliyahu Teitz cites cases where we attempt to secure Gittin even from
recalcitrant husbands whose marriage was performed by a Conservative
affiliated Rabbi.

Here we should be aware that this is before the fact. Were the woman to have
remarried without a get and have had kids from the second husband - the real
halachic dilemma - then to the best of my knowledge the major Poskim,
including the Tzitz Eliezer, and of course Reb Moshe himself, would be lenient
in the issue of Mamzeirus.

In sum, as a chumra l'chatchila (before the fact), I can understand such
behavior. Ex post facto, in a she'eila b'di'eved, I could not.

Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer


From: <eposen@...> (Esther R Posen)
Date: Tue, 27 Dec 1994 11:01:20 -0500
Subject: Eating in a Conservative Shul

I have a good friend who is a Reform jew.  I WOULD NEVER EAT IN HER
HOUSE AND SHE WOULDN'T EXPECT ME TOO.  I have good friends who don't eat
at their own mother's (Conservative) home and those fanatics won't let
their children eat there either (unless the food is packaged, served on
paper plates, comes from the home, etc.)

Friendship and kashrut are two different things.  Any good friend with
whom you have an open honest relationship should accept that there are
different standards of kashrut.  I don't even understand what the
question is.  The only question I can think of asking is "How do I
nicely but firmly explain to a good friend who may or may not keep some
version of Kosher that I will not eat what they eat or supervise?"

Being an orthodox jew does not always mean being comfortable.  I
remember traveling with a jewish, non observant colleague a number of
years ago.  After watching me subsist on fruit, cookies, and other
staples of the kosher jewish traveler, he was really happy for me when I
received my packeged kosher meal on the airplane.  (I had told him that
I don't count on it always being there, which had been my experience.)
In any case, despite the tastiness of airline food, I was in the mood
for something warm, however, I could not eat the chicken because IT WAS
THE NINE DAYS.  He looked at me and said "so Esther what's wrong with
this?  Why can't you eat this?  It has the right symbol?  They didn't
unwrap it! etc.  So I told him and then he knew I was even more of a
fanatic than he thought!  He said he was glad he was travelling with me
so I could pray if anything happened to the plane.  (Our friendship did
not suffer from the experience.)

As far as doing things because one has a "job to keep", we can
understand and commiserate with people, however we must also know how
many thousands of jews arrived in this country and were lost to religion
forever because they had "jobs to keep".  Let's not be so open minded
that our brains fall out.  There is a difference between an Orthodox and
Conservative affiliation.  And even if there is a spectrum between
attending a Conservative synagogue and being a full time practicing
"Conservadox" jew, this, my friends, is still not Orthodoxy.

I am sorry about my vehmence, but someone just told me a story about a
cousin of hers who goes to a Conservative temple and attended a
Christmas dinner hosted by an intermarried (Christian/Jewish) couple.
All the guests were jews.  How cute!  Yes, until these parents come
running to their rabbi or whomever or just sit among themselves and
lament that their children are dating or marrying non-jews.  But at
least then, they can go to Christmas dinners every year! (Sorry for the
sarcasm, but we are losing so many to intermarriage...)

Although there may be some blurring of the lines an Orthodox Jew is an
Orthodox Jew.  We are the minority out there.  We need to stick to our



From: Mark Press <PRESS@...>
Date: Tue, 27 Dec 94 18:33:33 EST
Subject: Re: Microphones and Kashrus

Two brief comments about the recent discussion re microphones and
kashrus (and having nothing to do with the question of the Halakhic
status of Conservative clergymen).
One must be careful to differentiate between khillul Shabbos and
khillul Shabbos b'farhesia.  To be a mekhallel Shabbos b'farhesia, which
is tantamount Halakhically in many respects to being a non-Jew, requires
according to most poskim a willingness to violate Shabbos under all
conditions and in the presence of all persons(based on a Talmudic text).
Many, if not most, Sabbath violators would not qualify.
The problem of the microphone, as has already been noted is complex,
especially since the introduction of transistorized amplifiers and the
elimination of vacuum tubes and heated filaments.  There are certainly
conditions under which the use of contemporary public address systems
would be no more than an issur d'rabbonon and quite possibly permissible.
In this connection I want to cite a tshuva I saw many years ago from a
Rov universally recognized in all circles as one of the gdolei hador in
which he permitted an  American Rov to use a microphone under specific
conditions but insisted that his name not be publicly connected with
the heter.  The heter was issued at a time when amplifiers still used
vacuum tubes.

M. Press, Ph.D.                  718-270-2409
Dept. Of Psychiatry, SUNY Health Science Center At Brooklyn
450 Clarkson Avenue, Box 32       Brooklyn, NY 11203
Acknowledge-To: <PRESS@SNYBKSAC>


From: <EDTeitz@...> (Eliyahu Teitz)
Date: Mon, 26 Dec 1994 09:34:31 -0500
Subject: Re: Non-Jewish Conversions

a more difficult question can be asked: how do we treat intermarried
couples where the wife is the jewish partner & the j\husband has no
interest in conversion.  the children are still 100% jewish.  do we try
and reach out to the owman & kids, or do we simply ignore them wit hthe
notion that she brought this trouble on herself and she will suffer for
her children's sins?

eliyahu teitz


From: Shoshana Benjamin <shu@...>
Date: Tue, 27 Dec 1994 08:32:29 +0200 (IST)
Subject: Re: Torah code software

You might like to know that Torah code programs that allow users to
conduct word searches based on equidistant letters, first letters of
words, and last letters, both forward and backword, are presently
available, as are other computer study programs, including Torah
gematrias. I myself bought a Torah code program advertised in the
Jerusalem post, sold then (two years ago) for $89. The program came with
an endorsement from the Bostoner Rebbe Shlita. Assuming addresses have
not changed, you should be able to get information from
			Torah Educational Software, Inc.
			230 East Route 59
			Nanuet, NY 10954
Telephone # given for technical support is (914) 624-3753
	The Israeli address was, and may still be
			52 Shaulson St.
			Har Nof
			Jerusalem 95400
	Tel: 02-511-861 

			Kol Tuv,
				Shoshana Benjamin


End of Volume 17 Issue 54