Volume 19 Number 71
                       Produced: Sun May 28 22:57:25 1995

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Camp Moshava
         [Leah S. Gordon]
Camp Moshava, Wildrose-- sexist?!
         [Aleeza Esther Berger]
Co-ed Kollel
         [Michael Caplan]
Reflections Shabbat Cosmetics
         [Laurie Solomon]
Shabbos Cosmetics (2)
         [Nadine Bonner, Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer]
Women and Mayim Achronim (5)
         [Rachel Rosencrantz, Cheryl Hall, Aleeza Esther Berger, Laurie
Solomon, Lon Eisenberg]


From: Leah S. Gordon <lsgordon@...>
Date: Thu, 25 May 1995 00:19:23 -0700
Subject: Camp Moshava

In a recent post, Mr. Daniel Yolkut wrote a very long message attempting
to argue against my statements that Camp Moshava in Wildrose, WI is
characterized by several sexist policies and procedures.

Mr Yolkut, however, ended up conceding on both of my points that the
camp is in fact acting in a sexist way, either because the people at the
camp end up being sexist, or because the policies are themselves sexist.

In fact, I am confused as to what Mr. Yolkut was trying to accomplish in
his posting, which was essentially a verbose restatement of my points.
Furthermore, I see no reason for such slanted words as, "Leah Gordon's
tayna's on my camp."  (Moshava is also "my camp," if we are comparing

For example, Mr. Yolkut writes, "I can only surmise that there were indeed
sexist remarks hurled by the guys [concerning the floor hockey games],"
(which he generalizes to be common among American Orthodox boys, a much
stronger anti-male condemnation of our society than I had made).

He also admits that, "a woman has applied to the kollel...and was
rejected...due to the fact that currently the kollel program...is
restricted to men."  (My ellipsis is only of parenthetical clauses
describing who made the decision (the Va'ad Moshava), and the alleged
financial reasons for such a decision being reasonable when based on

In other words, my original points still stand.  Yes, I agree that
Moshava is better than some environments for young Jewish women, and it
is great that women do the same garbage-hauling as do men (which
Mr. Yolkut pointed out), but I had never argued that the camp's labor
policies were sexist, only that some of its athletic and academic
policies were problematic.  I do thank Mr. Yolkut for his supporting
evidence for my points.

Finally, I am not concerned with Moshava's proposed reasons for their
gender-based denial of women to the kollel program.  It is possible to
restate any question as a fiscal concern.  (And neither my S.B. nor my
S.M. from MIT can help me determine how it is cheaper to pay for eight
men in a kollel than for four women and four men.)

Leah S. (Reingold) Gordon


From: Aleeza Esther Berger <aeb21@...>
Date: Tue, 23 May 1995 20:00:01 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Camp Moshava, Wildrose-- sexist?!

> >From: Daniel A HaLevi Yolkut <yolkut@...>

> While a woman has applied to the kollel ...  and was rejected that was
> due to the fact that currently the kollel program, in order to stay
> both financially viable and to provide the critical number of chaverim
> to allow for a bet midrash atmosphere as..  but it is a matter of
> finances rather than of policy.

Is this scenario sexist? According to the U.S. Title IX Gender Equity in
Education Law, passed in the early 1970's, yes.  (You usually hear about
this law for school sports cases.) Camp Moshava may be exempt from
following this law, I just want to point out that citing finances rather
than "policy" doesn't change the basic inequity involved.  It's a matter
of priorities: The "pro" of a "bet midrash atmosphere" vs. the "pro" of
women learning.  Which is more important? I'd choose the women learning.
I also think that a "bet midrash atmosphere" can be maintained in the
presence of men and women together.  It may not be ideal, but compared
with leaving the women with nothing, that's what I would choose.

I continue to note what seems to me to be a lack of consistency in the
opinion that coeducation is worse for Torah studies than for secular
studies (or camp activities). What is the halakhic basis for this

Aliza Berger


From: Michael Caplan <mcaplan@...>
Date: Tue, 23 May 95 15:49:45 
Subject: Co-ed Kollel

I would only point out to Mr. Yolkut that a co-ed Kollel environment
does work well. If examples are needed, he can check out the Pardes
program and the Shiurim at Bet Knesset Yakar (both places are in

While I agree that Moshava's decision not to admit women into their
Kollel program is not based on sexism, it must be understood that this
program is not a Smicha based program.  What "religious" issues could
there be? It seems to me that by perpetuating the separation of serious
learning, we are perpetuating the idea that learning by men is more
important than that of women.

I look forward to programs like the ITJ opening up serious Kollel
learning to women. A "Poska" program would benefit all of modern,
Orthodox Jewry. While, at the same time, it would serve to illustrate
that men and women can study in the same room, share books and
instructors, and even be in the same Chevruta.

-Michael Caplan


From: Laurie Solomon <0002557272@...>
Date: Tue, 23 May 95 11:21 EST
Subject: RE: Reflections Shabbat Cosmetics

Chaim Schild asks about Reflections Shabbat Cosmetics.

I use these cosmetics and was so glad to find them.  The best way to
purchase them is to get a demo (or watching one).  The cosmetician can
show you (or your wife in the case of Chaim) the proper way to apply the
makeup on Shabbos. There was a little card given out as a reminder of
how to use it, but after using it for a few weeks it's old hat, and I've
long lost the card. The card might have been written up by my
cosmetician or the cosmetic company, don't know.

Although I'm not a Rav, here are a couple of guidelines that I learned
and now follow when I use the Shabbos makeup on Shabbos: << This may be
more info than some men--or some women-- may want, but it's interesting
in a halachic perspective>>

- due to the malacha of dyeing, most of the Shabbos makeups don't last
that long.  I find that I can apply them right before leaving for shul
on Shabbos morning and may have to reapply in the afternoon.

- most of the cosmetics are powdered.  Thick creams and lotions are a
problem due to the malacha of smearing.  Regular lipstick is also out
for the same reason (as well as the malacha of dyeing).  The "lipstick",
therefore is also a loose powder.

- you can't use a solid caked powder.  Can't remember which malacha this
falls under, but it's similar to not using solid bar soap on Shabbos.
Therefore BEFORE Shabbos, you must prepare the cosmetics by scraping off
the powder.  A small eyebrow/men's mustache comb works well-- most
cosmeticians can give you one too (but they're more expensive).  I
usually scrape off a lot, to last me several weeks, and have this on my
"Shabbos checklist" to make sure there's enough ready.  If you forget to
do this...you can't use the makeup on Shabbos.

- can't mix the colors -- in the container or on your face.  So first
off, your face has to be completely clean (or you're applying it over
top the same type and color of makeup.)  So here's an example of how
it's applied: First you put the light color powder on, say under your
eyes as a concealer, around the face, chin, etc.  BUT LEAVE THE
CHEECKBONES BLANK.  Then the blusher color powder is applied on the
cheekbones. The look is not as blended as you'd do during the week, but
it's OK, and with practice it get's better, and speaking personally,
it's certainly a lot better than not wearing any makeup...and you're not
breaking Shabbos.

- you have to apply all the powder makeups with a clean brush.  You
can't use a sponge or cotton.  Not sure why this is, but that's how I
was instructed.  A different cosmetic brush must be used for each color
(again so as not to mix the colors).

- don't know if there is any type of mascara.  If so, it would have to
be a powder, and my eyes are allergic to a lot of powders so I never
pursued this.  The best thing for mascara is to use the waterproof/long
lasting type and apply BEFORE Shabbos.

One last thought.  Chaim Schild also asked about any Rabbis against the
use of Shabbos makeups.  I don't know if there are or are not, but my
Rav approved them-- with proper use.  As a caveat, Shabbat Reflections
also has a line that is kosher l'Pesach (for Passover), approved by
Rabbi Blumenkrantz.

I am not a salesperson for this cosmetic, but if anyone wants to know
how to get it, I can give them the name of the cosmetician in Baltimore
where I get mine.  I always like to help others keep a mitzvah!  And in
my case, each time I put them on, it's for kovod Shaboos (in honor of

Laurie Cohen


From: <n.bonner@...> (Nadine Bonner)
Date: Thu, 25 May 95 01:01:00 UTC
Subject: Shabbos Cosmetics

There are several brands of Shabbat make-up on the market. The three
that I know of are all supervised by Rabbi Blumenkrantz. I wrote an
article about one of the companies -- Shaindee, based in Baltimore --
and from the people I interviewed, I gather there are several factors
  First of all, the formulas have to be powdered so that they are
temporary.  The blushes and foundations come in compacts and have to be
broken into powder before Shabbat. Some of Shaindee's blushes can also
be used as a lip color.  She sent me some samples, and they do give a
slight color to the lips, but it's nothing like real lipstick. Also
because it is powder, it is dry and should not be used by someone with
dry lips.
  The cosmetics have to be applied to a clean, dry face with nothing on
it that the powders can cling to.
  The colors cannot be mixed. They must also be applied with a brush,
not a sponge or finger tip.
  Rabbi Blumenkrantz also checks each color. I don't know what he bases
his rulings on, but I was told they have yet to find a true blue
eyeshadow or red blush or lip powder that can be used on Shabbat.
  Shaindee also has lipstick and eye liner that can be applied before
Shabbat and are supposed to last. And there is a sealer that can be put
over a regular lipstick and is supposed to last 24 hours.
  A friend of mine has a list of Shabbat approved regular cosmetics
published by Chofetz Chaim Yeshiva.
  Nadine Bonner

From: <sbechhof@...> (Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer)
Date: Tue, 23 May 1995 09:18:33 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Shabbos Cosmetics

Chaim Schild asks about Shabbos Cosmetics. I gave a shiur on this topic
about 2&1/2 years ago (Tape number CH 50 in our Tape Library). I do not
think MJ is necessarily the right forum to discuss this in detail, but
there are severe Halachic difficulties involved in allowing the use of
these alleged "Shabbos Cosmetics". Rabbi Bleich, in Contemporary
Halachic Problems has an essay on the issue.

Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer


From: <rachelr@...> (Rachel Rosencrantz)
Date: Tue, 23 May 1995 21:58:00 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Women and Mayim Achronim

> >From: <DaveTrek@...> (David Brotsky)
> Why Don't Women Wash Mayim Achronim?

It's funny you should mention this.  I went and asked my Rav the same
question the other day.  He said that he had no idea why not and that
women probably should wash.  He said that his wife used to wash with
mayim achronim when they first married but no longer does, probably
because it is difficult to fit it in.  (I guess logistic wise when you
need to bentch quickly it could be a problem.)  So I guess because women
don't see women washing with mayim achronim they don't realize that they
probably should.  I try to when I can (when it isn't going to cause too
much of a stir at the table.)


From: <CHERYLHALL@...> (Cheryl Hall)
Date: Thu, 25 May 1995 21:46:27 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Re: Women and Mayim Achronim

I only found out in this past week's "ask the rabbi" list from  Ohr Sameach
that women are equally obligated. This definitely in NOT the minhag. I have
always refrained, since this first time I was exposed to this practice and
everyone yelled "only men do this". My problem now after having read this
response in Ask the Rabbi, is if I should attempt to do it, I'll be
assaulted again as a rabid feminist. Because everyone knows only men do it!

Cheryl Hall
Long Beach CA USA

From: Aleeza Esther Berger <aeb21@...>
Date: Tue, 23 May 1995 20:30:56 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Women and Mayim Achronim

> >From: <DaveTrek@...> (David Brotsky)
> Why Don't Women Wash Mayim Achronim? [washing hands before Grace after 

A great question, the answer to which (whatever it is) probably teaches
a lot about the sociology of Orthodox women's education at home and at

On a personal note, I (like my family) don't wash mayim achronim - so I
am faced with the question of what to do when i'm a guest in a house
where "people" do, "people" being the men. I gather that when a man is
in this situation, he just washes when it gets passed to him (no harm
done). (I've never seen a man refuse to wash when it gets passed to

I think we need some more data here. Can someone on the list who has
personal experience with an all-girls' elementary or high school write
in as to whether the girls are taught to wash mayim achronim? Can
someone whose family custom it is to wash write in as to whether they
all do it, or just the men? If just the men, why? Does "people" really
equal "men"?

Aliza Berger

From: Laurie Solomon <0002557272@...>
Date: Tue, 23 May 95 11:22 EST
Subject: RE: Women and Mayim Achronim

David Protsky asked why women don't wash mayim achronim.

I learned that actually they should, but it became the minhag not to.
This was primarily because women were in the kitchen serving and always
washing their hands anyway.

A strong minhag can become halacha l'mysa, as is the case here.

Laurie Cohen

From: Lon Eisenberg <eisenbrg@...>
Date: Tue, 23 May 1995 15:57:58 +0000
Subject: Women and Mayim Achronim

David Brotsky notes that women don't wash mayim aharonim.  Althogh I
have also seen places where men do and women don't, I believe this is
incorrect: it is equally important for both.  BTW, whenever we are at a
place where the custom is to wash mayam aharonim, my wife does it (even
if the other women don't).

Now, in reality, it can be shown that it is not required today, since
our salt is not as dangerous as the "melekh sedom" for which the
practice was apparently instituted (on the other hand, if your hands
aren't clean at the end of the meal, then it is required: for women
too). [See Mishna Berurah].

Lon Eisenberg   Motorola Israel, Ltd.  Phone:+972 3 5659578 Fax:+972 3 5658205


End of Volume 19 Issue 71