Volume 20 Number 47
                       Produced: Sun Jul 16 15:13:05 1995

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Balak and Moshiach
         [Chaim Schild]
Bombay busses
         [Shmuel Himelstein (n)]
Bombay Shabbat Busses
         [Yosef Branse]
Bracha on Fajita Wrappers
         [Art Werschulz]
Etymology of Cholent
         [Lon Eisenberg]
Kaddish without Ashrei?
         [Yitz Etshalom]
Thanking G-d and Destruction of the Temple
         [Eli Turkel]
Violence in Yeshiva High Schools
         [Kenneth Posy]


From: <SCHILDH@...> (Chaim Schild)
Date: Fri, 14 Jul 1995 09:16:36 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Balak and Moshiach

A little late in the week for a post but...... From the Rambam/Rashi, it
is discussed that the last prophecy of Bilaam is about King Dovid\ and
Moshiach.......From the Midrash, it is stated that Balak was an ancestor
of Ruth and thus both of them.....Has anyone commented anywhere on the
significance of Bilaam thus telling Balak that his descendent is
Dovid/Moshiach ? [ In Eliyahu Kitov Sefer HaParshiyot it mentions that
Bilaam (i.e. Lavan or his descendent), Balak (Moav and thus Nachor) and
the Jews (i.e. Avraham) were all descended from Terach but does not
elaborate that much or give sources or significance..... ????



From: Shmuel Himelstein (n) <himelstein@...>
Date: Sun, 16 Jul 1995 03:36:41 GMT
Subject: Bombay busses

My thanks to Seth Ness for dirceting me to Misphpetei Uzziel about using
a bus on Shabbat. Following his lead I looked up Piskei Uzziel, which is
a collection of Rav Uzziel's rulings done posthumously. The ruling in
question (at least the one permitting the use of such busses) indeed
appears there (Siman 13, p. 55). Rav Uzziel, though, lays down one other
important stipulation: "that this be used only for mitzvah purposes,
such as travelling to a synagogue, etc., but not for a pleasure trip,
and all the more so not for business purposes."

       Shmuel Himelstein
Phone: 972-2-864712   Fax 972-2-862041
<himelstein@...> (that's JerONE not Jer-L)
             Jerusalem, Israel


From: Yosef Branse <JODY@...>
Date: Sun, 16 Jul 1995 9:07:22 +0300 (EET-DST)
Subject: RE: Bombay Shabbat Busses

In Vol. 20, #34, Shmuel Himelstein comments on
>a bus ticket, issued in Bombay, India, specifically for Jews to be used in
>using the local busses on Shabbat! (i.e., without having to tender money).... 
>If anyone knows anything more about this ticket, I believe all MJ readers 
>would be interested.

As the Abisher arranged things, I read the above item while sitting on a
bus headed for a wedding in Jerusalem. Seated across the aisle from me
was my neighbor Elkana, who hails from Bombay! So I leaned over and
asked him to explain this. He was familiar with the Shabbat tickets, but
his version doesn't exactly fit with what Seth Ness wrote in Issue #42,
about the tickets being for rides to and from shul.

These tickets were issued during the time of British rule in India.
Those Jews who were salaried workers - rather than independents, who
could take the day off if they pleased - used them to travel to
work. The conductor didn't punch the tickets (though I don't see what
Shabbat problems that would cause). When the Jew reached his place of
work, he just sat there without doing anything. His presence was enough
to secure his wages. Evidently, this scheme was acceptable to everyone.

This arrangement operated until the end of the British period. When
India gained independence, said Elkana, most of the Jews left anyway. He
never used such tickets, but saw one that had been used by his father.

He also provided an interesting sidelight on the relations of Jews with
other religious groups in Bombay. When a religious parade, including
musicians, approached a synagogue on Shabbat, they would stop playing
about a hundred meters ahead and maintain their silence until they had
passed a similar distance.

* Yosef (Jody) Branse       University of Haifa Library                    *
* Systems Librarian         Mt. Carmel, Haifa 31905, Israel                *
*                           Tel.: 972 4-240288  / FAX:  972 4-257753       *
* Internet/ILAN:     <JODY@...>                                  *
*                                       "Ve'taher libenu le'ovdecha, VMS"  *


From: Art Werschulz <agw@...>
Date: Fri, 14 Jul 1995 09:38:10 -0400
Subject: Bracha on Fajita Wrappers


Does anybody know whether the bracha on wheat flour fajita wrappers is
hamotzi or mzonot?  Thanks. 

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: Lon Eisenberg <eisenbrg@...>
Date: Sun, 16 Jul 1995 07:44:08 +0000
Subject: Etymology of Cholent

One of our Shabbath guest offered an interesting etymology which makes sense to
me:  "Cholent" comes from the the French "chaud lent".  "Chaud" means hot;
"lent" means slow.  Has anyone seen a Rashi to this effect? :-)

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

[I'm pretty sure that the origin of the word Cholent has been discussed
in the past on the Yiddish list - Mendele, and that while something like
9 different etymologies were suggested, there does not appear to be any
consensus among Yiddush experts. Mod.]


From: Yitz Etshalom <rebyitz@...>
Date: Sat, 15 Jul 1995 20:37:30 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Kaddish without Ashrei?

This past Shabbat, we had a wonderful simcha at camp (Moshava, Wisconsin) 
- the aufrauf of one of our Kollel members.  In order to mark the 
occasion, the camp - and the Kallah's family - sponsored a special 
Kiddush.  Usually we have kiddush before Torah reading, as many of our 
campers cannot "last" that long w/o food.  In this case, in order to have 
the kiddush after the aufrauf, it was scheduled before Musaf.  The Torah 
was put away, and then everyone vacated the Beit Knesset for a good 45 
minutes of Kiddush.  When we returned, the Shaliach Tzibbur [ leader of 
the service] was about to say the half-Kaddish, when one of our Kollel 
members suggested that Ashrei - or some other chapter of Psalma - should 
be recited first, as we do before Mincha.  His reasoning was that the 
Kaddish is always said BETWEEN or AFTER a part of the service - but never 
before - and that it may be inappropriate to say an "orphan" kaddish.  
Opinions? (btw, the Rosh Kollel ruled that Ashrei was unnecessary, but 
asked me to post the question to see what others suggest].


From: Eli Turkel <turkel@...>
Date: Fri, 14 Jul 1995 10:14:59 -0400
Subject: Thanking G-d and Destruction of the Temple

    In a recent daf yomi the Gemara in Sanhedrin states that the King
Chizkiyau could have been the Messiah but was denied this because he did
not thank (say Shirah or a blessing) G-d for the victory over
Sancheriv. Though Israel independence day has passed with its
discussions I wonder if our generation does enough to recognize what G-d
has done for us and thank him for having a homeland where Jews are
welcome. I once heard a comment that it is very strange that according
to some groups that the holocaust, where millions of Jews lost their
lives, is the work of G-d while the Israeli war of independence, where
hundreds of thousands of Jews were saved, is the work of the devil !!!
    Some people defend not singing the praises of G-d for the state of
Israel by pointing out all the religious problems that exist in the
state. I have several answers to this. First the same gemara in
sanhedrin states that Sancheriv was rewarded because he did not claim
that any other country was better than the land of Israel while the jews
were punished for making this claim. This is because of the inherent
holiness of the land independent if the king is a saint or a sinner -
Chizkiyau versus his father and son.
    With the start of the three weeks it is an appropriate time to
review the history of the time of the destruction of the second
temple. The zealots in Jerusalem killed opponents who opposed the
revolt. It is clear that the city of jerusalem had enough food and water
to withstand a multiyear siege by the Romans. Under ordinary
circumstances it would have been extremely difficult for the Romans to
conquer the city. However, groups in the city burnt all the food stores
causing mass starvation. Hence, with this historical perspective things
in the land of Israel are not that bad.  It isn't the days of the
Messiah, yet, but let's not exaggerate the bad either.
    People complain that all the news on TV is bad and not good. I think
we do the same in Jewish current events. Thinking about the destruction
of the Temples coupled with the Gemara in sanhedrin I think we should
spend more time thanking G-d for the good that we do have.



From: Kenneth Posy <kpposy@...>
Date: Tue, 11 Jul 1995 08:51:56 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Violence in Yeshiva High Schools

      I sort of feel bad that my second post to this forum is also not
on a technical halachic issue.  But as I e-mail from work, I do not have
sources available on hand.
      But I do not think I need any to answer Ms. Hall's post.

" I don't have kids in the high school yeshivot... but many of my
friends do.  Part of the problem is living away from their parents. I
have observed this even in the interaction of the kids with their
parents, too many of these kids think they are adults and really don't
have adequate supervision or disipline, during the week. When they are
with their parents they resent their loss of freedom (or is it
licsense?). There is no one to effectively say no. The more I see and
hear, the more I think a good PUBLIC school at home is BETTER than
sending them away. Their Jewish education many suffer, but their moral
foundations and Jewish living might have a better chance."

I would like to challenge three of your assumptions: the atmosphere in
yeshivos, the level of their supervision, and the relative quality of
even a *good* public school environment.
      The first is the generalization of the original poster's yeshivah
experience to the general atmosphere of yeshivos.  In my experience with
Yeshivah high schools (I went to one, and have have spoken to people who
went to a large variety, from the best to the worst), I have never heard
of any such story. I have heard of stories were students misbehaved, and
even where students were caught involved in criminal activity (stealing
the regents, although I definately have no first hand experience with
this type of behavior) But I never heard of a case were the entire
student body rampaged throught the school on a destructive binge. Before
condemning the Yeshiva system, visit some of the higher quality yeshivos
(Philidelphia, Baltimore, and Riverdale come to mind) and see an
atmosphere of intellectual intensity and motivation that cannot be
compared to any secular school.
      The second problem is with your description of yeshivah students
having inadequate supervision. Yeshivah students may be undersupervised,
but its mainly because they don't have time to do anything that needs
      My school is not on the top level, but we had a very intensive
schedule as well.  We often went to school to learn before davening (at
6:30am) and we never came home before seven. We also had school Sunday
morning, and when we got off early on Friday (after mishmar Thursday
night till after midnight) some students went to visit patients at the
local hospital and other went to special "Friday afternoon internships"
with local businesses and corporations.  I am not saying we were angels,
and I have a long list of "shtick" that we "pulled", but the only time
we caused property damage was when we painted an Israeli flag on the
school wall for Yom Ha'aztmaut, which the administration of my
anti-zionist school was not happy about at all. "Shtick" stops where
"mazik" starts. (Our rationalization for the flag, which we painted over
a week later, was that it was an improvement, and we were saving the
Yeshiva money on Yom Ha'aztmaut decorations). In fact, the principal of
my non boarding high school told me that his biggest problems in
discipline (other than me) were due to the *extra* liberty provided by
parents that made many students unable to handle the pressure of the
school program.
      On the other hand, my college roomate was valedictorian of Santa
Monica high school in Califonia, which is considered a good public high
school. Nevertheless, he has stories of drugs I had never heard of,
parties I would never go to, and then there was the time he was
suspended for blowing up the science lab. The grafitti in the bathrooms
in any public high school would not meet FCC standards. Of course, a
positive home environment has a better chance to offset such conditions,
because they get out at 3:30 in the afternoon. (I was just starting my
second class.) Santa Monica high has an armed security force. Is that
the kind of supervision that you mean? Although my evidence is
anecdotal, media coverage certainly supports this perspective, and all
my public school graduate friends have similar stories.
           The purpose of a yeshivah education is to provide a
comfortable environment for the students to be indoctrinated in Torah
values at the same time as being educated in a classical sense.  It is
true that the students often react negatively to such intensive
structure, and that the public schools offer some educational resources
that the Yeshiva cannot provide. But in order to succeed in the
minimally structured public school setting, a student must be very
highly self motivated. A yeshiva provides motivation.


End of Volume 20 Issue 47