Volume 20 Number 41
                       Produced: Thu Jul  6 23:58:01 1995

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

2 days Yom Tov
         [Stephen Phillips]
2nd day of Yom Tov
         [Ari Shapiro]
Article by Rav Ovadiah Yosef on Shaving on Chol Hamoad
         [Michael J Broyde]
Handicappers (sic)
         [David Griboff]
Mezzuzot and Children
         [Stuart Schnee]
Mixed seating at Weddings
         [Moshe J. Bernstein]
Proper pronunciation?
         [Art Werschulz]
Rav Lau on Internet - Not
         [Carl Sherer]
Separate seating at weddings
         [Jeremy Nussbaum]
         [Josh Cappell]
Zohar Authorship
         [Joseph Steinberg]


From: <stephenp@...> (Stephen Phillips)
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 95 16:37 BST-1
Subject: 2 days Yom Tov

Date: Wed, 5 Jul 1995 09:10:22 +0000
>From: Lon Eisenberg <eisenbrg@...>
Subject: 2 Days Yom Tov

>I believe there are NO Jews living in Jordan.  If there were, I believe
>they would keep only one day (as the Jews in Syria do, as far as I
>know), since, as you stated, they are close enough to have known the
>correct day.

Well, how come they've just opened a Kosher restaurant in Jordan?

>My question is "what about Eilat?"!

I believe that in Eilat one would have to keep two days Yom Tov as it was 
never part of Eretz Yisroel.

Stephen Phillips.


From: <m-as4153@...> (Ari Shapiro)
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 95 19:28:52 EDT
Subject: 2nd day of Yom Tov

>>To bolster this point of view, look at the situatin in Jordan, which is
>>surely within a two week radius of Yerushalayim, and yet keeps two days
>>of Yom Tov.

>I believe there are NO Jews living in Jordan.  If there were, I believe
>they would keep only one day (as the Jews in Syria do, as far as I
>know), since, as you stated, they are close enough to have known the
>correct day.

>My question is "what about Eilat?"!

Actually this is a machlokes(dispute) Rishonim.  The Rambam in hilchos 
kiddush hachodesh writes that keeping 2 days depends only on one thing 
whether the messengers reached that place at the time they sent messengers.
Therefore the Rambam writes (kiddush hachodesh chapter 5 halacha 12 and see
halachos 5-11) and I quote "a city that was newly built in the
midbar(desert) of Israel or a newly settled place(in Israel) keeps 2 days"
This is even in Israel.  The Rambam writes in the halacha before "places in
Syria like Dmasek, Tzur or places outside of Israel like Egypt do what
their ancestors did either one day or 2".  The Rambam holds that 2 days
versus 1 day has nothing to do with Israel and the diaspora it has to do
with where did the messengers reach.  Other Rishonim(Ritva in Succah) say
that since the messengers reached most of Israel and didn't reach most of
the diaspora the takana (enactment) was to keep one day in Israel and 2
outside of Israel. According to the Rambam since Eilat (I don't think,
someone correct me if I am wrong) was not settled during the period that 
they sent messengers, would have to keep 2 days, according to the other
Rishonim it would depend on whether Eilat is considered part of the land of

Ari Shapiro


From: Michael J Broyde <relmb@...>
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 1995 11:38:17 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Article by Rav Ovadiah Yosef on Shaving on Chol Hamoad

I am looking for an article by Rav Ovadiah Yosef dealing with shaving on 
chol hamoad that was published in a journal called "pinot hahalacha" in 
nissan 5736.  If any of the readers of mail.jewish have a copy of that 
journal, I would be very interested in having them share it with me.
Thank you very much.
Rabbi Michael Broyde
404 727-7546
fax 404 727-6820


From: David Griboff <TKISG02%<EZMAIL@...>
Date: Thu 06 Jul 1995 11:58 ET
Subject: Handicappers (sic)

A recent post regarding mezuzah height included the following statement:

> This "long mezuzah" would allow short people, children, and
> handicappers to kiss mezuzos.

Gee, I thought we had discussed several months ago that gambling was not
considered a halachic activity. :-)

However, on a much more serious note, it should be said that those who are
bound to wheelchairs would be highly insulted by the term 'handicapped'.
Many of those confined to wheelchairs lead highly productive lives and do
not consider themselves as 'handicapped' - I believe they prefer the term,
'physically challenged'.

We, as Jews, are always very sensitive to the types of phrases used to
describe us.  The least we can do is be sensitive to others who may also
find certain names and phrases offensive.



From: Stuart Schnee <msstu@...>
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 1995 19:04:41 +0300 (WET)
Subject: Re: Mezzuzot and Children

RE: Mezuzot being placed lower for children, I read in a biography of
Rav Ya'akov Kamenetsky Zt"zl that when he visited the kindergarten in
his son Binyamin's yeshiva he noticed that a Mezuzah had been placed
lower than Halachically prescribed so the children could reach
it. Although he said the idea of children touching the Mezuza was a good
idea, the Mezuzah should be placed in the proper place. Otherwise
children would grow up thinking one could just move a Mezuzah around as
one wished, and this would be educating them in falsehood. He said they
should use a stool to reach it.

 From "Reb Yaakov" by Yonason Rosenblum 


From: Moshe J. Bernstein <mjbrnstn@...>
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 1995 10:18:35 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Mixed seating at Weddings

As far as the Rov zt"l's views on mixing of the sexes at weddings is
concerned, when asked regarding the seating of men and women at the
huppah at my wedding (which was being held outdoors), he replied, "Let
them sit any way they want."  Since he was the mesadder kiddushin and we
would have followed his decision regardless, I believe that this is an
case of "maaseh rav" which cannot be disregarded easily.

Moshe Bernstein


From: Art Werschulz <agw@...>
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 1995 09:52:55 -0400
Subject: Proper pronunciation?


I was the Baal Kriah last week, and ran into a problem: I found three
different pronunciations for the last word in Numbers 18:19.  The
consonants are aleph, tav, chaf sofit.

Pronunciation #1: itach.  (Aleph/chirik, tav/kamatz, chaf sofit/shva).
Source: Mikraot Gdolot, ArtScroll Chumash.

Pronunciation #2: it'cha. (Aleph/chirik, tav/shva na, chaf sofit/kamatz).
Source: Michael Bar-Lev's "Baal HaKriah".  AFAIK, the shva na is
unusual here; isn't it usually a shva nach?

Pronunciation #3: itacha.  (Aleph/chirk, tav/kamatz, chaf sofit/kamatz).
The accent is on the second syllable.  Source: Hertz chumash.  FWIW, I
don't know of any other place where this particular pronunciation
occurs; OTOH, I don't claim exhaustive knowledge.

My Tikkun (the blue "Tikkun LaKorim") might be either #2 or #3.
The vowel underneath the tav could be either a poorly-printed kamatz
(perhaps a broken piece of type) or a shva; it's hard to tell.

FWIW, I learned it via #2 (based on Bar-Lev and the fact that it
really looked like a shva to me.) OTOH, our shul uses Hertz, so the
gabbaim corrected me to read #3.  That's what I did.

Two questions:

(1) Does anybody have definite knowledge of this word's pronunciation?
    Please back this up with evidence as to why it should be
    pronounced that way as opposed to the other ways.

(2) Does anybody know of other disagreements of pronunciation between
    commonly-used chumashim or Torah-readers' guides?


Art Werschulz (8-{)}  "Ani m'kayem, v'lachen ani kayam." (courtesy E. Shimoff)
GCS/M (GAT): d? -p+ c++ l u+(-) e--- m* s n+ h f g+ w+ t++ r- y? 
InterNet: <agw@...>  <a href="http:www.cs.columbia.edu/~agw/">WWW</a>
ATTnet:   Columbia U. (212) 939-7061, Fordham U. (212) 636-6325


From: <adina@...> (Carl Sherer)
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 95 22:59:45 IDT
Subject: Rav Lau on Internet - Not

I believe someone on this list asked earlier in the week whether Rav Lau
may be contacted on the internet.  I spoke with his son in shul this
morning and the answer, unfortunately, is no.

-- Carl Sherer
	Adina and Carl Sherer
		You can reach us both at:


From: <jeremy@...> (Jeremy Nussbaum)
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 95 12:44:44 EDT
Subject: Separate seating at weddings

> >From: Marc Meisler <mmeisler@...>
> Jeffrey Woolf, in v20n27, stated that there is no absolutely no halachic
> obligation to have separate seating at weddings.  First, I think that
> people shold refrain from such absolute statements unless they can be
> sure that no one makes such a requirement.  He may have gotten such a
> psak from his Rav, but this by no mean makes it an absolute statement.
> Second, I mention this because when I was learning from my Rav before my
> wedding he brought down, I believe from Kitzur Shulchan Orach that there
> is an obligation, or at least a strong recomendation against mixed
> seating at the wedding dinner.

Perhaps Rabbi Dr. Woolf meant that at least according to some
authorities, there is no halachic obligation.  At any rate, there is the
well known passage in the work of the early German "chasidim" (no
relation to the chasidic movement), Sefer Chasidim, in which the claim
is made that the wedding addition to zimun, "shehasimcha b'meono," is
not added at a wedding in which there was mixed seating.  I am at work
and cannot cite the exact location.

It is interesting to note how people proclaim explicitly or implicitly
that his/her Rav or Posek is the universal one, to be relied on for a
particular issue by everyone, and the objections raised.

On a side note, I've started reading a book on the Vilna Gaon's role in
the opposition to the chasidic movement, a great example of where the
gadol hador was not followed by everyone.  I am curious how it came to
be that the chassidic innovation for the shechita knife came to be
accepted virtually universally.

On another side note, I'm disturbed by the evidences of right wing
historical/halachic revisionism.  I'm curious if there is any
information on the reaction of any of the higher respected authorities
on this issue, i.e. if any roshei yeshiva or poskim have condoned or
condemned such actions.

Jeremy Nussbaum (<jeremy@...>)


From: <josh@...> (Josh Cappell)
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 95 09:02:27 EDT
Subject: Zohar

Dear Yaacov Shulman/mj--Readers,
	Regarding your query on the authorship of the Zohar, I would
like to rephrase the question a bit stronger:
	What would be so terrible about acknowledging that the Zohar was
written later?
	One must keep in mind in any case that the standards of
authorship have varied over time.  The strictness which we apply was
uncommon in the middle ages in any case.  In modern terms it might be
more correct to say that a work was "based on" or "inspired by" its
attributed author.  (For the same reason, accusations of plagiarism
regarding books from that period are similarly anachronistic).  To my
knowledge the 100% authenticity of the Zohar is not one of the Ikarei
Emunah.  I'm also not sure why sources must be limited to only Orthodox
works.  While perhaps some scholarship may be influenced by one's own
beliefs, is that necessarily ALWAYS so, implying that one can NEVER look
at evidence from other sources?  As religious people, if anything, we
have MORE reason to believe that truth is objective, and if we are
baalei emunah we have little to fear from any serious investigation!

				Curious for responses to Y. Shulman's and
				my own question,
				Josh Cappell


From: Joseph Steinberg <steinber@...>
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 1995 14:09:51 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Zohar Authorship

:The basic question is obvious.  How is that that a Tannaitic work
:contains--if it does--language and concepts of a later era?  But if we
:were to say that the Zohar is not authentic, how could it have been
:accepted as a central work by all (or at least the great majority) of
:gedolim since its appearance?  And if parts are authentic and parts not,
:how does one tell the difference?

There are far bigger problems with the theory that the Zohar was written 
by R. Shimon Bar-Yochai. There are statements in the Zohar which 
contradict statements of his in the Midrash. Some are quite problematic 
contradictions -- such as statements that certain principles are basic to 
Jewish faith (in the Midrash) and then the opposite being said in the 
Zohar (see the Zohar and Midrash Tanaim on the pasuk in Breishit about 
the 'N'filim', for example.)

There is also the issue that NONE of the early Rishonim seem to mention 
the Zohar -- and in fact, some make strong allegations against concepts 
found within the Zohar (see Ramban on the concept of reincarnation vs. 
the Zohar on reincarnation).

The issue of the authorship of the Zohar will probably remain a mystery 
until Eliyahu arrives (may it be soon -- while there is still an Israel 
to arrive in!)



End of Volume 20 Issue 41