Volume 17 Number 91
                       Produced: Fri Jan 13 14:40:09 1995

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Do bad things happen to good people?
         [David Kaufmann]
Insurance Reimbursement for a Bris
         [David Bolnick]
Men Wearing Rings
         [Esther R Posen]
Miami Beach Eruv
         [Moshe Hacker]
Milk from dead animals
         [Merryll Herman]
Out-of-print Sfarim (was: sridei aish)
         [Josh Backon]
Purim Drinking
         [Akiva Miller]
Rav Moshe's Birthday
         [Joseph Steinberg]
Ritual Pool Parties
         [Esther R Posen]
Thshuvot of Reb Moshe
         [Erwin Katz]
Tree-Planting Outside of Israel
         [Steve Wildstrom]
Tu Bishvat
         [Yisrael Medad]
         [Gilad J. Gevaryahu]
Wedding Bands
         [Joseph Steinberg]
Why Bad Things Happen To Good People
         [Esther R Posen]


From: David Kaufmann <kaufmann@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 95 9:05:12 CST
Subject: Re: Do bad things happen to good people?

On the "bad things" question, Rabbi Manis Friedman has an _excellent_
tape (titled, I think, "Do bad things happen to good people?") which
deals with the issue in depth and provides, imho, a place to begin
a discussion while insisting on hasgocha pratis (Divine Providence).

Contact R. Friedman at 612-698-3858.

David Kaufmann INTERNET:	<kaufmann@...>


From: David Bolnick <davebo@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 95 10:28:26 TZ
Subject: Insurance Reimbursement for a Bris

I must reply to this since it is dear to my heart. As a certified mohel 
I used to sign insurance forms when asked. I found that most insurance 
companies (those that cover circumcision) accept certified mohelim as 
professional providers. So why did I stop the practice? The answer is 
simple. Brit Milah is a mitzvah (commandment) not a medical procedure. 
Jews circumcise their sons to fulfil the mitzvah: "This is My covenant 
which you shall keep ... every male among you shall be circumcised ... 
and it shall be a sign of the covenant between Me and you" (Genesis 17,7-11).

In essence, when we do a mitzvah and claim, for monetary reward,  that 
it is something else we are being dishonest (we may even be stealing -- 
in a moral or halachik sense).  In many communities the rabbis used to 
prohibit physicians from performing brit milah simply to make the point 
that brit milah was not a medical procedure.  This is not true in 
America since it is relatively difficult to train a mohel except in a 
large and tightly knit Jewish community. Thus, as the rabbis feared, 
many of us (myself included) have confused the mitzvah of brit milah 
with the medical practice of circumcision.

	- Dave Bolnick


From: <eposen@...> (Esther R Posen)
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 1995 12:13:59 -0500
Subject: Men Wearing Rings

I know of at least a few men who only wear a ring to work



From: Moshe Hacker <HACKERM@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 1995 09:42:46 EDT
Subject: Miami Beach Eruv

When I was in Miami Beach the Rabbis there told me that the eruv
includes the boardwalk not the beach, the boardwalk is included because
of the fence or railing on the side facing the beach. Even though there
is breaks to get to the sand, the breaks aren't wide enough to cause a
halachic problem



From: <mkh@...> (Merryll Herman)
Date: 13 Jan 95 18:29:00 GMT
Subject: Milk from dead animals

Meshulum Laks <mpl@...> writes:

> We are all aware that the torah has prohibited mixtures of meat and
> milk, whether for eating cooking or deriving benefit. However as the
> Talmud says, since the prohibition is derived from the sentence 'do not
> cook a kid in its mother's milk', 'what is prohibited is the milk of its
> mother, which excludes the milk deriving from an already slaughtered
> animal'. Thus the unexpressed milk still nascent in the udder does not
> yet have the status of milk to prohibit mixtures of it with meat. Thus
> from Torah law, the milk from the udder is ignorable, and one could 
> cook udder and eat it with the usual meat preparation. 

It seems to me that it should be a problem using the milk in an udder and 
considering it fleishig.  What if someone were to prepare this to eat and
realized that there was not enough meat to go around and wanted to add to
it.  This person could go out and buy meat that just happened to come 
from one of the calves of this cow.  If this meat were cooked with the 
other "meat" then it would seem that the person would literally be 
cooking a calf in its mother's milk.  I thought we had all these fences of
kashrut to prohibit even the slightest chance of this!

Merryll Herman, <mkh@...>


From: <BACKON@...> (Josh Backon)
Date: Thu,  12 Jan 95 10:23 +0200
Subject: Re: Out-of-print Sfarim (was: sridei aish)

Binyamin Segal asked where to purchase out-of-print sfarim. The only
place I know of is Copy Corner, 5022-13th Ave in Brooklyn (tel:
718-972-0777).  They reprint (with permission) rare out-of-print
sfarim. I believe the retail outlet is on 4409 16th Avenue (tel:
718-436-1165). Please let M-J readers know if they have this in stock.



From: <Keeves@...> (Akiva Miller)
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 1995 14:33:58 -0500
Subject: Re: Purim Drinking

Danny Skaist, in MJ 17:85, explained his source for why we get drunk on

>The clue to all this is that one is supposed to get drunk until there is
>confusion between all those who are supposed to be blessed and those who are
>supposed to be cursed (Tos. brings down a Yerushalmi).  This can only happen
>if inhibitions are broken down and the non-sincere converts couldn't
>remember what they were supposed to believe.

I have heard of the interpretations which explain that we should drunk
*up*to* - but NOT including - the point where we cannot tell the
difference.  I think Danny's explanation ties in nicely with that: If
their goal was to be able to distinguish between the sincere and
insencere converts, then our goal is to get as drunk as we can WITHOUT
losing sight of who is blessed and who is cursed.

Akiva Miller


From: Joseph Steinberg <steinber@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 1995 15:04:38 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Rav Moshe's Birthday

:I spoke to Reb Dovid Feinstein and in 1885 there was only one adar.

That is very nice -- but Rav Moshe was not born in 1885!


From: <eposen@...> (Esther R Posen)
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 1995 12:11:58 -0500
Subject: Ritual Pool Parties

I asume the authors were trying to be amusing.  In case they were serious, my 
response is - how crass.



From: ERWIN_KATZ_at_~<7BK-ILN-CHICAGO@...> (Erwin Katz)
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 95 16:26:51 CST
Subject: Thshuvot of Reb Moshe

The only English translation I'm aware of is the translation of D'Rash
Moshe which is not Halacha but mostly parsha of the week and compiled
after Reb Moshe's death. It is available in any book store. There is
also an English version of the computer created index to the Igrot
floating around.


From: Steve Wildstrom <swild@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 95 18:18:33 EST
Subject: Tree-Planting Outside of Israel

IN MJ 17-86, Aleeza Esther Berger <aeb21@...>  writes:
>Also, I was wondering.  Does anyone recall from their own experience, or 
>have they heard about, tree-planting ceremonies *outside* of Israel? Or 
>is Tu b'shvat so closely tied to the land of Israel in the minds of 
>people that no one would do this? (If you live in a warm climate outside 
>of Israel, please try to think about this.)

     Actually, if you live anywhere where the ground is not frozen (this 
     year, that describes much of the U.S.) this is a perfectly good time 
     to plant trees, especially deciduous (non-evergreen) ones. They 
     actually do best if transplanted during dormancy.

     Of course, as a child in Michigan, celebrating Tu b'Shevat in the 
     depth of a midwestern winter always seemed weird, but no more so than 
     celebrating the harvest of first fruits at Shavuot, which generally 
     comes at a time when the trees have barely budded in the frozen north. 
     The difficulties of galut.


From: MEDAD%<ILNCRD@...> (Yisrael Medad)
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 95 08:40 IST
Subject: Tu Bishvat

For all those on the line who will be fulfilling the Tu Bishvat custom
of eating the fruits of Eretz-Yisrael, remember that in order to be able
to eat these fruits, we have to have an Eretz- Yisrael.  And some
things, even to be able to fulfill mitzvot, or to understand the concept
of "the seven species", we cannot just take for granted.

And by-the-by, out here in Shiloh, where I & family live, we have people
growing nectarines, kiwi and finally, a real vineyard.  But that last
one is for Tu B'Av.

Yisrael Medad


From: <Gevaryahu@...> (Gilad J. Gevaryahu)
Date: Fri, 13 Jan 1995 09:41:41 -0500


The particular section of the treaty dealing with the direct charitable
giving to an Israeli charitable organization reads as follows:

Article 15-A (1)

In the computation of taxable income of citizen or a resident of the United
States for any taxable year under the revenue laws of the United States,
there shall be treated as a charitable contribution under such revenue laws
contributions to any organization created or organized under the laws of
Israel (and constituting a charitable organization for the purpose of the
income tax laws of Israel) if and to the extent such contributions would have
been treated as charitable contributions had such organization been created
or organized under the laws of the United States; provided, however, that
this paragraph shall not apply to contributions in any taxable year in excess
of 25 percent of taxable income for such year (in the case of a corporation)
or of adjusted gross income for such year (in the case of an individual) from
sources in Israel.

My original posting on this issue was too broad and possibly misleading - I
appologize.  The limitation in the bottom of the section of 25% of the income
derived from Israel sources is serious. This means that if such a US citizen
does not have any Israeli source income, than he cannot deduct his direct
contribution (to Israeli charities) at all, whereas he could deduct such a
contribution if he gave such a contribution to a US  501(c)(3) organization.
Therefore, Israeli charitable organizations might end up needing a US
501(c)(3) organization to recieve tax deductible contributions from US
citizens who do not have Israeli source income.

Shabbat Shalom,
Gilad J. Gevaryahu


From: Joseph Steinberg <steinber@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 1995 15:03:45 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Wedding Bands

Someone wrote:

:Chabad Hasidim do not wear rings. Generally speaking, the majority of
:observant males I know do not wear rings in Israel. The majority of the
:opposite sex here wear many.

In Israel that may be the case -- but in the USA and Western Europe it 
may not be. BTW, I was talking with Don Meridor (MK, Likud) yesterday and he 
was wearing a wedding band... 

    | | ___  ___  ___ _ __ | |__      Joseph Steinberg
 _  | |/ _ \/ __|/ _ \ '_ \| '_ \     <steinber@...>
| |_| | (_) \__ \  __/ |_) | | | |    http://iia.org/~steinbj/steinber.html
 \___/ \___/|___/\___| .__/|_| |_|    +1-201-833-9674


From: <eposen@...> (Esther R Posen)
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 1995 12:17:41 -0500
Subject: Why Bad Things Happen To Good People

I strongly suggest the tapes of Rabbi Yitzchak Kirzner (olav hashalom)
to anyone interested in this topic.



End of Volume 17 Issue 91