Volume 18 Number 27
                       Produced: Thu Feb  2 22:35:16 1995

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Seven Clean Days (2)
         [Michael J Broyde, Eliyahu Teitz]
The baby in the womb
         [Zvi Weiss]
Women's Motivation
         [Leah S. Gordon]
YU and Homosexual Clubs (2)
         [Robert Rubinoff, Michael J Broyde]
YU: Affiliates and Emblems
         [Elie Rosenfeld]


From: Michael J Broyde <relmb@...>
Date: Wed, 1 Feb 1995 10:08:51 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Seven Clean Days

The question was raised about the status of the seven clean days taken
upon themselves by the daughters of Israel.  It is important to realize
that even before this taking upon themselves by Jewish women, there were
a series of prior rabbinic decrees that added to the torah commandments,
such as Rebbis decree of 6 days and others found in mesechet niddah.
The Jewish women did not jump from going to mikvah at the end of 7 days
total to seven clean days; there were a series of rabbinic decrees prior
to that and moderated that jump.

One writer states:
>I have heard of cases of couples
> who are having trouble conceiving, who have been given a heter to skip
> the "extra week", (i.e., the woman goes to the mikvah right after
> cessation of menses, as per the original Torah law) in the hopes that
> their problem is simply due to ovulation occuring during that week.
> >From what I've heard, in fact, this heter was given at a rather early
> stage of the difficult process that such couples go through, and not
> only after all other avenues have been exhausted.

	I have not encountered a single published source that permits
practice, even in the face of infertility.  More likely , the woman was
told she could do her hefsec tahara early and start counting seven clean
days at day 3 or 4.  Of course, merely because I have never encountered
this in print does not mean that it is not possible that some permit it.

Michael Broyde

From: <EDTeitz@...> (Eliyahu Teitz)
Date: Wed, 1 Feb 1995 15:17:10 -0500
Subject: Re: Seven Clean Days

concerning the seven extra days of nidda:

the g'mara relates that the daughters of israel accepted an extra chumra of
only one day. to explain:

the tora prohibits a woman for 7 days from commencement of bleeding (
provided she stops bleeding before the end of the seventh day ). after
that there are 11 days in which she can becaome a 'zava'. if she bleeds
one day, she must keep nidda laws for one day.  if she sees three
consecutive days, within the 11 days, she needs 7 clean days before
being permitted to her husband.  after the 11 days, she is in a
potential nidda state until she starts bleeding and then becomes an
actual nidda, and the ziva cycle starts 7 days later.

chazal felt that these rules could get confusing ( eg. a woman sees on
days 10, 11, 12 - is she a zava or not [ day 12 is the start of the next
nidda cycle, so she is not a zava ] ).  for these reasons chazal decided
that if a woman bleeds even one day, she should wait seven days (
regardless of whether it is nidda or zava cycle ).  if she bleeds 2
days, she need wait only six days.  if she bleeds three consecutive
days, she needs 7 clean days.

the daughters of israel accepted to wait 7 days regardless of how many
days bleeding ( one or two ).  nowadays, we consider any bleeding at all
to be zava bleeding and we require 7 clean days.

about the heter to go back to d'oraita for problems in conceiving:

there is another delay placed in the whole process, and that is the
mandatory 5 day wait before starting to count seven clean days. the
delay is to allow for any residual semen to be expelled before checking
for cessation of blood, lest someone check and not notice a speck of
blood that was covered with semen.

this delay only applies if there was a possibility that the woman had
relations, meaning that she was pure and not in a nidda or ziva state.
therefore a suggestion for those with problems is to refrain from going
to the mikva one month and when bleeding starts, the woman can check
starting the 7th day from onset of bleeding, rather than 12th day.
these 5 days can make a big difference.

in this way one still keeps the d'oraita and d'rabbanan restrictions of

this is in fact the advice that my father, rabbi elazar teitz, has given to
people in the past. and those who asked were successful in having children.

eliyahu teitz


From: Zvi Weiss <weissz@...>
Date: Tue, 31 Jan 1995 14:57:35 -0500
Subject: The baby in the womb

While I would like to point out that in general, "Ain M'shivin al
HaDrash" one is rather constrained from attempting to refute material
presented in a totally homiletic light, Jeremy's consternation at the
lecturer who mentioned a male "studying" in the womb. could be resolved
pretty easily.

Since as he noted, the reason that the angel studies is so that the
"second time around", it will be easier to learn Torah, then perhaps,
the angel only studies with male babies as they are the only ones qho
will be REQUIRED to study Torah after they are born and grow
up.... However, I fail to see how this is an instance of a woman being
defined as a "Jew worthy of respect by virtue of being mother to a boy".
All I saw was that there was a question re rising for a being (the
embryo) currently engaged in the study of Torah..

What is far far more fascinating to me is that if the angel does NOT
study with the female embryo, then it means that she does NOT have the
benefit of the "prior" educaiton that the male has.  If that is so, what
does that say about her attainments should she decide to study Torah?
Especially if she SUCCEEDS in her studies...

There is a Torah Temima statement that alludes to the fact that when
women *do* decide to study, they are SUPERIOR in their achievements....



From: Leah S. Gordon <lsgordon@...>
Date: Thu, 02 Feb 1995 13:33:27 -0800
Subject: Women's Motivation

Mr. Zvi Weiss writes, "I think that there is a simple 'test' that we
can do here [to judge whether a woman should participate in permitted

Mr. Weiss goes on to suggest that only women who are fully observant
should be allowed to do things that are permitted, but not required.
What I would like to know is since when is it up to any man (or indeed
any person) to decide other people's motivation?  Leave it up to G-d,
who will take care of sorting out who did what for which reasons.
The only thing for which humans are responsible is deciding what is
allowed, or not allowed; obligatory, or not obligatory, and so on.

I am also annoyed by the frequent references to "feminism," or "feminist
women," used as derogatory terms.  In all likelihood, the users of these
words are not completely clear on their meanings.  There is a widespread
(i.e. even among famous rabbis), but incorrect notion that "feminist"
is synonymous with "lesbian," "man-hater," "irreligious," "self-serving,"
or any number of other negative images.  As it happens, all the feminists
in my circle are heterosexual, androphilic, observant, and generous.

If people want to make generalizations about what kind of motivation is
appropriate or not (and this includes poskim), then they certainly ought
to make an effort to understand the relevant terminology and not jump on
the chauvinist bandwagon.

The only universally agreed-upon meaning of "feminism" is "belief that
women should not be discriminated against based on their sex."  This
stance can include those who do not see a different role as
discrimination, though that is not my personal opinion.

Leah S. Gordon


From: <Robert_Rubinoff@...> (Robert Rubinoff)
Date: Thu, 02 Feb 95 17:55:42 EST
Subject: YU and Homosexual Clubs

> >From: Mordechai Horowitz <BR00318@...>

> According to the Forward article on the issue the threat against YU came
> from the NYC human rights commission.  They claimed that they could take
> away YU tax exempt status if they banned pro homosexual organizations.  The
> problem with their logic is that the tax exempt status is Federal in
> origin and the city of New York has no power over the Federal
> government.

I don't know what the law actually is, but this doesn't follow.  It
could very well be that one condition for tax-exempt status is that an
educational institution not be denied local tax exemption or local
certification or some other such criterion.

Actually, I think the issue is not so much tax exemption as it is
government grants to the school and to the students (i.e. scholarships);
if the school is in violation of civil rights laws, it can lose its
eligibility for government money (including not allowing
government-guaranteed loans to be used there).


From: Michael J Broyde <relmb@...>
Date: Wed, 1 Feb 1995 22:01:17 -0500 (EST)
Subject: YU and Homosexual Clubs

 Binyamin Jolkovsky in reply to my allegation of ethical impropriety on 
his part replies:
> All I wrote is what I was told by a senior Rosh Yeshiva at RIETS.
> Again, not what I may or may not remember -- what I was told! If, in
> fact, that Rosh Yeshiva erred, then I have as well. And, if in fact, that
> is the case, then, yes, I fully retract.

To be honest, I am skeptical if that unnamed "senior Rosh Yeshiva" is
real.  Given the fact that Jolkovsky mentions the name of many other
Roshai Yeshiva by name (Rabbis Tendler, Parnes and my own rebbi, Rabbi
Bleich, are mentioned) why not attribute this source?  Certainly it is
not because of fear of retribution from Yeshiva, as it is well known
that Yeshiva does not restrict its rabaimin even from attacking Yeshiva.
	Even if the source really does exsist, as I understand the rules
of lashon hara, to repeat negative things about another that are
hearsay, one must first make a reasonable attempt to investigate the
facts oneself.  Did Jolkovsky do that?  Did Binyamin Jolkovsky go up to
the Yeshiva University campus and make a simple investigation?  (Indeed,
I was sent a copy of an email letter by Jolkovsky in which he recounts
that he has never been to Yeshiva University's Washington Heights
	On we go to secular law: Jolkovsky claims that:
> Though Dr. Lamm believes that he would be sued, and, in turn lose
> considerable funding if he boots the gay clubs, my reporting has found
> that not to be the case. The one exception may be in the area of tax
> exemptions. That issue is merky. Several experts in the field have told me
> that if YU ever goes to court, then it is likely the school would win.
	This is a misstatement of secular law.  As noted in Gay Rights
Coalition v. Georgetown University, 536 A.2d 1 (1987) a religious
institution that is also providing a secular function (is covered by
Title VII) must provide the same tangible benefits to a gay student
organization as it does to other student organizations.  The Court
states that the University need not "recognize this groups" as valid,
but it may not supress them.  This was affirmed as the law in New York
in Catholic Home Bureau for Dependent Children v. Koch 481 NYS2d 632
(1984) as well as many other cases.  For a list of the cases that affirm
this possition, see Oregon v. Smith: An Educational Approach, Journal of
College and University Law volume 20, page 333, text accompanying note
83, which cites numerious cases as being in agreement with what I state
to be the law.  A similar approach is endorsed in the Harvard Law Review
volume 102 page 1669.
	Thus Yeshiva has no choce but to allow this groups to function
in its secular graduate programs.  I think this is beyond dispute.
	Who are the secular law experts that Jolkovsky consulted?  I
suspect that that are seriously mistaken; I would very much like
Jolkovsky to provide their names simply to demonstrate "good faith" on
his part that he has really consulted them.
 On one issue I agree with Jolkovsky.  He states:
>To quote Rush Limbaugh: "Words mean things."
I agree.  Indeed, the words of our Sages concerning the power of false 
speech to hurt and distroy should not be forgotten. "One who speaks 
lashon hara about another violates 35 (in some versions 36 or 37) 
With best wishes,
Rabbi Michael Broyde

(Since I make a clear claim about secular law in this post, I will state
my qulifications in that area.  I am a fellow in the law and religion
program at Emory University, and work in the area of church state
issues, when I do not do Jewish law.  I am teaching Secured Credit this
semester at Emory University Law School (along with Jewish law) and last
semester I taught Federal courts at Emory Law School.  I graduated from
NYU Law School, and Clerked for Judge Garth of the US Court of Appeals,
Third Cir.)


From: <er@...> (Elie Rosenfeld)
Date: 2 Feb 1995  14:48 EST
Subject: YU: Affiliates and Emblems

It seems to me that one of the the key issues in the YU/gay discussion
is what YU's relationship with its "affiliates" is and should be.  As it
stands, schools like Einstein and Cordozo are _very_ loosely associated
with YU.  To give two obvious examples, they are co-ed and are equally
open to Jews and Gentiles.  It's hard to say what degree of control YU
can and should have over them.  YU's emblem on their doors doesn't mean
all that much more than Queen Elizabeth's face on Canadian money.

Be that as may, if YU _does_ have sufficient control over the affiliates,
I believe it should forbid clubs which violate basic Jewish principles,
just as it mandates that the affiliates are closed on Yom Tovim and have
kosher cafeterias.  Or just as it presumably would not allow a "Cordozo
Movie Club" to show movies in the student lounge on Shabbos.

Of course, this has nothing to do with which students should be _admitted_
to the affiliates.  In this regard they should be open to all qualified
applicants, regradless or religion, race, gender, or "sexual preference".
And what the students do in their own time is their own business.  But an 
officially sanctioned school club, attached to the name of YU, is another

Elie Rosenfeld


End of Volume 18 Issue 27