Volume 22 Number 68
                       Produced: Thu Jan  4  0:44:30 1996

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

1996 (2)
         [Michael Shimshoni, Elanit Z. Rothschild]
1996, Yehuda's Grandsons
         [Al Silberman]
Binyamin's ten sons
         [Mayer Danziger]
         [Danny Skaist]
Custom in House of Mourning
         [Perry Zamek]
Customs in house of mourner
         [Gad Frenkel]
Jastrow (2)
         [Gilad J. Gevaryahu, Michael J Broyde]
Questions on Tanach, etc.
         [Shmuel Himelstein]
         [David Hollander]
Sholem Aleykhem
         [Meylekh Viswanath]
Tower of Babel
         [Vladimir Malkin]


From: Michael Shimshoni <MASH@...>
Date: Mon, 01 Jan 96 17:10:01 +0200
Subject: 1996

In Volume 22 Number 61  Gedaliah Friedenberg wrote:

>Does anyone know if significant Torah events that took place in the
>biblical year 1996?  This kind of comparision (between biblical
>numerical years and secular numerical years) is probably meaningless,
>but occasionally interesting.  For example, (if I recall correctly)
>Avraham entered Eretz Cana'an in 1948 (and, of course, the modern
>Israeli State was founded in 1948).

I will agree  strongly with Mr Friedenberg that  such coincidences are
pretty  meaningless (that  does not  mean  that one  cannot have  some
innocent fun with  them).  May I point  out that in the  year 1948 (or
1949, depending  if Adam was  created in the year  0 or 1),  Avram was
*born*, well before he entered  Cana'an.  As to 1996 I have  not found
anything  worth reporting.   Avraham's grandfather  Nahor died  in the
year 1997 (1998).  Any buyers for that? :-)

 Michael Shimshoni

From: <Ezr0th@...> (Elanit Z. Rothschild)
Date: Mon, 1 Jan 1996 22:22:56 -0500
Subject: 1996

 From what I know, during the year 1996 in the Torah, the people of the
world (dor haflaga) built the tower of bavel and it was destroyed.  Any

Elanit Z. Rothschild


From: <asilberman@...> (Al Silberman)
Date: Wed, 3 Jan 1996 14:07:11 -0500
Subject: 1996, Yehuda's Grandsons

Both of these answers can be found in Seder Olam Rabbah chapters 1 and 2.

The subject of "Events of 1996" in the Jewish calendar was raised in V22#61.
>Does anyone know of significant Torah events that took place in the
>biblical year 1996?

>Avraham entered Eretz Cana'an in 1948 (and, of course, the modern
>Israeli State was founded in 1948).

First, a correction. Avraham was BORN in 1948. He entered Cana'an from
his homeland first at the age of 70 then again at the age of 75.

Second, the story of the dispersion of the nations (Haflagah) occurred
in 1996.

The subject of Yehuda's grandsons was raised in V22#62.

The following chronology is giver in SOR for the 22 years under discussion:

Year 1 - Er born
     8 - Er marries Tamar
     9 - After 1 year Er dies
    10 - Onan married to Tamar for a year
    11 - Tamar asked to wait awhile
    12 - Extra time Yehuda delayed giving Shelah - Story of Yehuda / Tamar
    13 - Peretz born
    20 - Peretz marries
    21 - Chetzron born
    22 - Chamil born


From: zazen!diverdan!<mayer@...> (Mayer Danziger)
Date: Wed, 03 Jan 1996 11:57:50 -0500
Subject: Binyamin's ten sons

	The answers provided by <yossi@...> and
<adina@...> re Yehuda's grandsons, might very well answer a
similar question I had. 10 of the 70 souls who came down to Egypt are
the sons of Binyamin. Mechiras Yosef took place after Rachel's passing
which was caused by Binyamin's birth. 22 years later Binyamin comes down
to Egypt with 10 sons. Based on the premise provided by the above
posters - people married at a very young age - Binyamin's 10 sons at the
age of 22 can be better understood.

Mayer Danziger


From: DANNY%<ILNCRD@...> (Danny Skaist)
Date: Wed, 3 Jan 96 12:18 IST
Subject: Chetzron

>Rabbi Yossi Chaikin
>had Peretz and Zorach and Peretz had Chetzron and Chamul.  The answer is
>that earlier generations had children at the age of seven (cf. Sanhedrin
>old enough to procreate Year 20 - Chetzron is conceived and born Year 21
>- Chamul is born Year 22 - Chetzron, Chamul and co. go down to Egypt.

To continue the line, Chetzron's son was Calev (Yefuna was his mothers
name) and Calev was 40 years old when he went as a spy. Calev's
great-grandson Bezalel was 13 years old the same year. (see
Divre-Hayamim I, 2:18-20 )

That also means that Calev was born when Chetzron was appx 171 years



From: <menachem@...> (Perry Zamek)
Date: Wed, 03 Jan 1996 09:25:50 +0200
Subject: Custom in House of Mourning

Zev Barr's posting on 1-Jan-96, re: "Hamakom yenachem..."

I would think that the correct grammatical forms ought to be used: i.e.
Ot'cha, Otach, Et-chem, Et-chen. When I sat Shiva, here in Israel,
separately from my mother, sister and uncle in Australia, some people paid
attention to the grammar.

Perry (Peretz) Zamek (on Menachem Kuchar's account)


From: Gad Frenkel <0003921724@...>
Date: Wed, 3 Jan 96 16:24 EST
Subject: Customs in house of mourner

I have heard two explanations as to the use of the plural (and
consequently male) when comforting a mourner.

1.  The comfort is being offered to the mourner's soul as well and is
similar to saying "Shal_m Alaychem (not Alecah or Alayeech).

2.  The comfort is being offered to the mourner and to the one has
passed on.  Although the soul is now in a better place, it is pained by
the suffering felt by the mourners who are left behind.

Gad Frenkel


From: <Gevaryahu@...> (Gilad J. Gevaryahu)
Date: Sun, 31 Dec 1995 17:46:26 -0500
Subject: Jastrow

Michael J Broyde posted on MJ22#62:

>One of the writers avered that:
>> I also use the Jastrow Aramaic dictionary, although the author was a
>> Reform rabbi.
>I do not think this is correct.  Jastrow was a member of the most
>traditional group of rabbis in America during the late 1800's and was
>instrimental in starting JTS, which was in the 1880 supposed to be the
>traditional / orthodox response to American reform.  I am nearly certain
>that his shul in Philadelphia was orthodox, and his children shomer
>shabbat.  I know nothing about his personal level of observance in terms
>of the details and times were very very different then, and many people
>thought things were mutar that we think are not (like electricty on yom
>tov) but it would suprise me greatly if he was a mechalel shabbat
>befarhesia, or denied the binding nature of halacha, as reform rabbis
>did even then.  We must all be very careful about how we categorize

I looked into the history of Jastrow in greater detail, and would like
to share it with you.

Rev. Dr. Marcus Jastrow, the rabbi of Congregation Rodeph Shalom,
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania was an eminent scholar. However, he
instituted into this congregation many changes, among them:

 1. He introduced the use of the organ into the synagogue services
during Shabbat and Holidays in the old shul building, and reintroduce it
again into the new shul building on June 21, 1887 (_The History of
Rodeph Shalom Congregation, Philadelphia_, 1802-1926, by Edward Davis,
p. 89)
 2. Adopted the "revised" prayer book of the Rev. Dr. Benjamin Szold
(the father of Henrieta) (ibid., p. 86)
 3. Recommended in Nov. 2, 1870 "that the reading of the Torah on
Sabbath morning services be shortened by selecting from the weekly
portion called Parashah, such a part as the Rabbi may choose for the
occasion..." (ibid., p.86)
 4. On January 29, 1887 Dr. Jastrow wrote: "...if there are persons who
feel embarrassed when being called up [for an Aliya], because they are
placed in the dilemma either to refuse an honor bestowed upon him or to
lend themselves to a sham; such a congregation has a right to follow
analogous precedents and abolish the calling up to the Torah..." (ibid.,
 5. He recommended on January 29, 1878 to his congregation to join the
Union of the American Hebrew Congregations. (ibid., p. 95)
 6. He abolished on January 23, 1884 the reading of the Megillat Esther
in Hebrew on Purim night (ibid., p. 95)
 7. On 1884 Rodeph Shalom Congregation withdrew from Union of the
American Hebrew Congregations for Dr. Jastrow felt that Rabbi Isaac Wise
went too far, and joined the JTS in 1886 (ibid., p. 97)
 8. In 1886 Dr. Jastrow instituted that some prayers in his shul be
recited in German and English instead of Hebrew (ibid., 100)

Up to this point the congregation felt that it was Orthodox! "It was at
this time [1891] that the Congregation began to emerge from its
Orthodoxy to a more liberal Judaism..." (ibid., 103) The new rabbi of
the Congregation, who was installed that year, made the quantum leap
into Reformism. Rodeph Shalom Congregation is the largest Reform
conregation in Philadelphia today

By our standards, a congregation with an organ, with revised Torah
reading, with no Megilla reading (at night), with some German & English
davening instead of Hebrew, etc.,etc. is not an Orthodox
congregation. Therefore, by our terminology in the twilight of 1995,
Rabbi Jastrow was a Reform (or Conservative) rabbi. I felt that Reform
is the more proper name since his Congregation rejioned the Reform
movement in 1892 while he was Rabbi Emeritus for another 11 years, and
the sucessor rabbis of this congregation to this very day see him as

Gilad J. Gevaryahu

From: Michael J Broyde <relmb@...>
Date: Sun, 31 Dec 1995 18:13:56 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Jastrow

One of the posters questioned my assertion that Marcus Jastrow was not 
reformed by citing a list of developments in his synagogue before and 
after his tenure as Rabbi there.  I confess that I am no expert on 
American Jewish history, but I wrote as I was always under the impression 
that Jastrow, who we have all used to learn with, was more observant than 
that.  The Universal Jewish Encyclopedia (6:45) notes that Jastrow was 
a follower of Issaac Lesser, who was the leader of (neo) orthodoxy in 
America, and that Jastrow resisted reform in the ritual.  His son, it is 
recounted in the next article, was ordained at Breslau, which certainly 
was not reformed.
	It is important not to use contemporary definitions of practice 
to determine social categories of religious affiliation in an era far 
different from our own. So too,it is important to recognize that there 
were eras and synagogues where the practices of the synagogue did not 
reflect the theology of the rabbi.
Michael Broyde


From: Shmuel Himelstein <himelstein@...>
Date: Wed, 3 Jan 1996 11:52:57 +0200 (IST)
Subject: Questions on Tanach, etc.

Mike Singer asked about books of questions on Tanach, etc. I know of the
following (in Hebrew):

Harav Yisachar Jacobson (author of *Netiv Bina* on the Siddur: *She'elot
le'iyun Binevi'im Rishonim* ("Questions for investigation in Nevi'im
Rishonim"), The Torah Culture Dept. of the Jewish Agency, 5726 - 1966.

Menashe Duvshani, "She'elot Uteshuvot Betanach" ("Questions and Answers
in Tanach"), at least 5 small volumes, S. Zack, Jerusalem, 1970. This
set is definitely NOT of a religious bent, and one would have to be very

           Shmuel Himelstein


From: <David_Hollander@...> (David Hollander)
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 95 12:19:18 EST
Subject: Segulos

Anyone have a personal experience or know someone who had a good
experience with a segula ?

I heard in the name of the Satmar Rebbe Rav Yoel that for a yellow
(jaundiced) newborn (who would have a bris postponed) one should wash
the baby's hands naygel vaaser (alternating right/left 3 times like when
arising from bed).  I know of people who used it successfully.  I use it
proactively on my children, both boys and girls - why not !


From: Meylekh Viswanath <viswanat@...>
Date: Wed, 3 Jan 1996 13:42:12 -0500
Subject: Re: Sholem Aleykhem

S.H. Schwartz <shimmy@...> writes regarding the use of a
fixed nusakh instead of a nusakh that varies according to the situation.
For example, saying "HaMakom yenachem ETCHEM b'toch shaarei aveilei
Tzion v'Yerushalayim" to every set of avel/im instead of tailoring it to
the particular mourner at hand.  As another example, he says:

> --"Shalom aleichem."  Sometimes I modify "aleichem" for the recipient.

As far as I know, the use of shalom aleykhem in english comes from
yiddish, where it was borrowed in a frozen, nondeclinable form from
hebrew.  Hence it is inappropriate to vary it according to the person
one is greeting.  (just like, e.g. one does say ' the hoi polloi' even
though 'hoi' in greek means 'the.')

I believe the use of the greeting 'sholem aleykhem' in modern hebrew,
too, comes from the yiddish, which, to repeat, borrowed it originally
from hebrew.  As such, I suspect it is not declined in modern hebrew,
either.  I am sure colloquial speakers of modern hebrew will be able to
enlighten us on this point.

Meylekh Viswanath
(914) 773-3906 (Voice)                       (914) 773-3920 (Fax)
Lubin School of Business, Pace University, 861 Bedford Road, Pleasantville,
NY 10570


From: Vladimir Malkin <malkin@...>
Date: Sun, 31 Dec 1995 20:11:33 -0500
Subject: Tower of Babel

In his message of Dec.28 Gedaliah Friedenberg asks:
> Does anyone know if significant Torah events that took place in the
> biblical year 1996?  This kind of comparision (between biblical
> numerical years and secular numerical years) is probably meaningless,
> but occasionally interesting.  For example, (if I recall correctly)
> Avraham entered Eretz Cana'an in 1948 (and, of course, the modern
> Israeli State was founded in 1948).

Yes, and the comparison may be useful.
Avra(h)am was born in 1948 since the Creation (SC), as well as the modern 
Israel State was born in 1948. In 1996 SC all the world united against 
Hashem to build the Tower of Babel. In respond to this, Avra(h)am
openly claimed that Hashem is the only Master of the world.
Perhaps, this contains clear message to us. Note also that in 1996 the
next, 5757 SC, year will begin, and 57 is the gematria of "mizbeah".



End of Volume 22 Issue 68