Volume 23 Number 01
                       Produced: Sun Jan 28 23:31:51 1996

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Eight Gates
         [Jeff Gold]
Gedaliah ben Ahikam
         [Jack Stroh]
Hattarat Nedarim when you Marry
         [Aaron H. Greenberg]
         [Esther Posen]
Kollel Solution
         [Zale L. Newman]
Moshe's Birthday (2)
         [Perry Zamek, Elozor Preil]
Moshe's birthday and the Chronology of Plagues
         [Etan Diamond]
Parat Moshe Rabeynu
         [Meylekh Viswanath]
Rebbe M'Kotzk on Eretz Yisrael
         [Dave Curwin]
Who represents the single mother for a wedding?
         [Dr. Howard M. Berlin]


From: <jasp@...> (Jeff Gold)
Date: Wed, 17 Jan 1996 00:16:02 -0500
Subject: Eight Gates
Newsgroups: shamash.mail-jewish

In my son's Hebrew class he was given an assignment on the "eight gates"
in Israel. We have tried to search the net for information but to no
avail.  Could you kindly forward any information to me at:
<jasp@...> Thanks in advance.

Jeff Gold, Toronto, Canada


From: <jackst@...> (Jack Stroh)
Date: Sun, 28 Jan 1996 20:22:25 -0500
Subject: Gedaliah ben Ahikam

        My navi group has been puzzled by the story of Gedaliah found in
Yirmiahu and Melachim. Briefly, Yirmiahu told the leftover people of
Jerusalem to go out and surrender to Nevuchadnezzar and they would not
be destroyed. Gedaliah and some others do this and are rewarded after
the Destruction with being named Governor of Judea. Gedaliah then
announced to those in hiding to come out and he would protect them, that
he would be between them and Nevuchadnezzar. A rebel leader warned
Gedaliah that Yishmael, a descendant of the Royal Family who was
jealous, wanted to kill him, but this was dismissed as a lie. On Rosh
Hashannah at the Yom tov meal, Yishmael massacres Gedaliah and his
people, and kills another 80 visitors the next day before escaping to
        Our questions are- why did Yirmiahu not warn Gedaliah? Gedaliah
is called a Tzaddik by the gemorah and listened to Hashem, yet no
warning, encouragement, or criticism? Where was Yirmiahu on Rosh
Hashannah? Why wasn't he celebrating with the Important People, the only
remnant of the Jews in Judea? We know he was in Judea because
Nevuzaradan, the Butcher of Bavel, sent him back to be with Gedaliah so
he wouldn't be hurt. Why do we only hear of Yirmiahu again when he warns
the "Remnant" not to go down to Egypt to escape from Nevuchadnezzar? Was
Hashem angry that Gedaliah was establishing a secular state in Judea?
True people (including the wicked) have freedom of choice to kill
whomever they wish, but usually Hashem will intercede when the killing
would alter his ultimate plan- in this case, the "Remnant of Israel" was
dislodged from Judea, not to return for 70 years.

Jack Stroh at <jackst@...>


From: Aaron H. Greenberg <greenbah@...>
Date: Sun, 28 Jan 1996 03:20:03 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Hattarat Nedarim when you Marry

> From: Gershon Klavan <klavan@...>
>  An earlier submission (I forget the volume #) asked about Hattarat
> Nedarim when you get married in order to switch to her husbands
> minhagim.  R.Yechiel Michel Tukichinsky wrote in Ir Hakodesh VeHamikdash
> vol 3 page 336 that Hattarat Nedarim is unnecessary as a woman always
> expects to switch to her husband's customs, thus any custom that she
> takes is always with intentions to switch.  This is, however, a relative
[stuff deleted]

While I am not familiar with the laws of Nedarim, one question that come to
which maybe someone can answer, is:  Wouldn't the husband's ability to anul
his wifes nedarim remove any obstacles to her switching to his minhagim?

[I do not think that this would be of any use here, because if my memory
is correct, he can only annul her vows:

a) That she makes after they are married, and this would be a vow made
in her fathers house

b) on the day that he hears them only (or the day that he hears that she
made it maybe?).

Avi, your Mod.]


From: <eposen@...> (Esther Posen)
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 1996 09:50:00 -0500
Subject: Kollel

There is no social system that is perfect.  This holds true within
Orthodox Jewry (surprise, surprise!).  This is true of the Kollel system
(of which we were proud card carrying members).  There are almost as
many ways to "make it" in kollel as there are people in kollel.  These
include but are not limited to wife working, husband working part time,
parents or other relatives helping out, the government helping out,
making do with very little, moving out of town to a small kollel that
pays well and being involved with the community etc. etc.

Some of these ways are more palatable than others to non-members of this
social system as well as to card carriers like myself.  All that aside,
one chooses a social system, despite its imperfections, because one
thinks its benefits outweigh its drawbacks.  The benefit of the kollel
system is that its members by and large learn!  (Please don't mention
the slackers, there are slackers in every social system even the one
here in AT&T.)

Because its members are involved with Torah, there homes, more often
than not, are permeated with Torah.  This is difficult to accomplish any
other way in this day and age although I am sure it can be, and is being
done within other social systems.

That's really the whole story.  There is a tacit assumption within this
community that despite the drawbacks this is a good approach to
fullfilling our "tafkid" (purpose) in this world.  There is some attempt
to address the pitfalls, however, that attempt is rooted in the same
assumption as "democracy" - the worst system of government, but the best
one I know!



From: Zale L. Newman <ce125@...>
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 1996 15:17:26 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Kollel Solution

Perhaps the whole kollel issue can be solved as follows:

We look at the issue as if we are supporting those who are taking from
the community and are contributing nothing in return. It is as if we are
giving and they are receiving.

Perhaps we can solve the situation by having the kollel student agree to
spend one year in service to the Jewish community (chinuch, kashrus,
etc.) for every year that they get paid to sit and learn.

Thus WE are now receiving as the kollel students will be building our
community's religious infrastucture,teaching our children, building our
eruvim etc. Thus in effect We will be receiving far more than what we
are giving.

It is interesting to note that the Kollel Avreichim in Toronto which
claims to be the first "community kollel" in the world, is now marketing
itself to potential donors as the organization that prepares the future
Rabbis, teachers etc. for the Toronto community. They understand that
donors which to know that they are receiving something in return for
their tzedaka "investment".

Personally, I concur with this approach. One who gets from the community
should be willing to give back to the community.

Zale L. Newman                                                   nv 


From: <jmarksmn@...> (Perry Zamek)
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 1996 10:53:29 +0200
Subject: Moshe's Birthday

Etan Diamond in v22n94 writes:
>I know that 7 Adar is commonly considered the date on which Moshe 
>died.  Is there a corresponding birth date?

The answer is: 7 Adar, based on the two sources: 1) CHazal say: God
completes the years of a Tzaddik, i.e. he dies at the end of a complete
year -- in Moshe's case, after 120 complete years (Actually, on the
first day of his 121st year?). 2) Moshe's own statement: Ben Meah
Ve'Esrim Shanah Anochi Hayom -- I am 120 years old today. (Devarim,
beginning of Parshat Vayelech).

May we all be blessed with complete years.

Perry Zamek

[Point 2 also submitted by <gershon.dubin@...> (Gershon Dubin)

From: <EMPreil@...> (Elozor Preil)
Date: Sat, 27 Jan 1996 22:27:22 -0500
Subject: Moshe's Birthday

Etan Diamond writes:
>	I know that 7 Adar is commonly considered the date on which Moshe 
>died.  Is there a corresponding birth date?

Yes, there is - 7 Adar.  This is based on the passuk at the the
beginning of Parshat Vayelech (Devarim 31:2) where Moshe proclaims on
the day he is to die (the last four parshiyot were on that day): "I am
120 years old today", which Chazal (the Rabbis) interpret to mean it was
his birthday.  Interstingly, it then comes out that three months after
his birth, when he was placed in the river and rescued by Paroh's
daughter, was the 7th of Sivan - later to be the day of (or the day
after) Matan Torah.

Elozor Preil


From: Etan Diamond <aa725@...>
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 1996 10:23:20 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Moshe's birthday and the Chronology of Plagues

	Thank you to all who responded that Moshe was born on 7 Adar.  I
thought so, but I was not sure.  Having confirmed this, I see a strange
mathematical problem in the chronologies of the events in the story of
the plagues and the exodus.
	It says in Shemot 7:7 that Moshe was 80 years old at the time he
and Aharon spoke to Par'oh.  We also know that Moshe died at 120 years
old.  We also know that he led B'nei Yisrael for 40 years.  We also know
that the exodus occurred on the 14/15 of Nisan.
	If so--it seems that all the plagues had to have occurred
between the 7th of Adar (Moshe's 80th birthday) and the 15th of nisan
(Yetziat Mitzraim).
	Otherwise, Moshe would have had to leave Mitzraim a full year
later when he was 81--leaving him only 39 years in the desert until he
was 120.
	So the question is this--is it possible that all 10 plagues
occurred within a 5 week period?  I remember learing various
intepretations--that they were each one week long, or that they varied
in length.  Some plagues have specific lengths--as in #1 (blood lasting
1 week) and #9 (darkness 3 days).  I don't know about the others.
	So--what's the chronology?

Etan Diamond
Department of History
Carnegie Mellon University
(by the way--yes-I am living in Toronto but am finshing grad school in 


From: Meylekh Viswanath <viswanat@...>
Date: Wed, 24 Jan 1996 17:42:14 -0500
Subject: Parat Moshe Rabeynu

There was a query regarding parat moshe rabeynu in a recent m.j.  Ruben
Frankenstein in Vol 4.409 of the Yiddish mailing list Mendele has this to

This tiny insect has got funny names in many languages.  Hebrew folowed
Russian and Yiddish in this case.  The russian name translated is:
"God`s cow".  Likewise Yiddish named it: "Moyshe Rabeynus ferdl" or
"Moyshe-Rabeynus-beheymele" and "Moyshe-rabeynus-kie`le" which is the
diminutive for "cow" in yiddish.  It must have been Chayim Nachman
Bialik who introduced the ladybird into the Hebrew in his poem "Zohar"
(=Brilliance): "Ben-suso-shel-Moshe-rabe(y)nu".  Later the small horse
became a cow: "Parat-Moshe-Rabenu".  The latin name is "Coccinella", the
french "coccinelle" or "bete a` bon Dieu" and the Germans call it
"Marienkaefer", that is "Marias Beetle" or "Sonnenkaefer" (sun`s

More discussion on this can be found in Mendele issues of circa May 1995.
Mendele archives can be searched from
http://sunsite.unc.edu/yiddish/mewais.html (maintained by Iosif Vaisman).
P.V. Viswanath                        Email:<viswanat@...>
(914) 773-3906 (Voice)                (914) 773-3920 (Fax)
Lubin School of Business, Pace University,
861 Bedford Road, Pleasantville, NY 10570


From: Dave Curwin <6524dcurw@...>
Date: Sun, 28 Jan 1996 11:56:56 EST
Subject: Rebbe M'Kotzk on Eretz Yisrael

Does anyone have any quotes or stories (with references, preferably)
of Rav Menachem Mendel of Kotzk on Eretz Yisrael?

David Curwin		With wife Toby, Shaliach to Boston, MA
904 Centre St.          List Owner of B-AKIVA on Jerusalem One
Newton, MA 02159                   <6524dcurw@...>
617 527 0977          Why are we here? "L'hafitz Tora V'Avoda"


From: Dr. Howard M. Berlin <berlin@...>
Date: Sat, 27 Jan 1996 18:51:58 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Who represents the single mother for a wedding?

I have a number of frum relatives in Brooklyn (who doesn't?). We will be
going to a wedding of the oldest daughter whose mother is either (1)
divorced, or (2) since the bum left her many years ago, she never sought
a get.

In this situation where the bride's father is not present (this would
also apply if the father was deceased), who then represents the bride's
side in the marriage negotiations (engagement, ketubah signing, etc.) as
it seems that women are specifically excluded. In the number of
frum/Chassidic weddings I have attended, only men were present in the
room when the ketubah was read. The women were outside the room
listening or watching via closed circuit TV.

Is a male relative chosen to act in place of the bride's father, does a
rabbi represent the family, or none of the above?

In addition, since the bride's mother needs to work to support the
family and has limited resources (there is also a younger unmarried
daughter to be married someday), is it then proper for the groom to
expect/require a dowery from the mother of the bride? I am simply
guessing of the details in this case and my wife and mother-in-law (this
is their side of the family) are too embarassed to ask about the
details. The wedding of another relative's daughter about 15 years ago
then required a dowery in excess of $50,000, but then, the father was in
a position to afford this amount.

 /~~\\       ,    , ,                             Dr. Howard M. Berlin, W3HB
|#===||==========#***|                           http://www.dtcc.edu/~berlin
No known relation to Irving Berlin, but a cousin to The Fonz (Henry Winkler)


End of Volume 23 Issue 1