Volume 23 Number 65
                       Produced: Tue Apr 16  7:45:42 1996

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Coffee and Pesach
         [Steve White]
Hag Kasher V'sameah
         [Eliyahu Shiffman]
Hagada Question
         [Chaim Wasserman]
Hagadah Question
         [Hillel E. Markowitz]
Hagadah Question: Is the Wise Son Righteous?
         [Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer]
Oat Matza and Rav Schachter
         [Joshua W. Burton]
Pour Out Thy Wrath
         [Aaron Gross]
The Five Grains
         [Michael and Abby Pitkowsky]
Using Welches Grape Juice For Kiddush
         [David Brotsky]
Wicked Son/Wise Son
         [Mordechai Torczyner]
Wise Son vs Wicked son.
         [Kenneth Posy]


From: <StevenJ81@...> (Steve White)
Date: Thu, 28 Mar 1996 11:12:35 -0500
Subject: Re: Coffee and Pesach

In #56, Linda Katz states, re Starbucks coffee:

>...  (Check with your LOR- although one poster said no, I've heard
>it may even be fine for Pesach - though I grind my own-it's 100% pure
>coffee. The coffees have fancy names to describe the roasts and blends-
>there is no added flavor to the coffees themselves.)

I can't speak to the Starbucks situation per se.  But I am told that in
general regular (non-decaffeinated) coffees can be used for Pesach, but
that decaffeinated coffees require a Pesach hechsher, because some use a
decaffeination process involving chametz.


From: Eliyahu Shiffman <RLSHIFF@...>
Date: Thu, 28 Mar 1996 14:41:24 +200
Subject: Hag Kasher V'sameah

    The expression "hag kasher v'sameah" is, in my opinion, ill- suited
for the situation we find ourselves in today.  These good wishes, when
expressed to non-religious Jews, are liable to be mistaken as implicit
criticism or "telling me how to live my life," and push people away
rather than bringing them closer.  When said to religious Jews, the
greeting, at least the "kasher" part, is superfluous: today, the great
majority of religious Jews (and in Israel, most traditional Jews as
well) go far beyond what the halakha requires in terms of kashrut on
Pesah.  Can anyone suggest a greeting more appropriate to the times?

Eliyahu Shiffman
Beit Shemesh


From: <Chaimwass@...> (Chaim Wasserman)
Date: Tue, 16 Apr 1996 00:00:42 -0400
Subject: Hagada Question

Mandy Book asked (mj 23 #61)
>Is there something more that makes the wicked son wicked?  Is there 
>something that differentiates one "you" from the other?

Clearly, there is something that differentiates the "you" of the wise
one from that of the "wicked" one. Motivation is the difference. The
wicked taunts cynically while the wise inquires with a genuine desire to
understand and phathom the meaning of korban Pesach.

chaim wasserman 


From: Hillel E. Markowitz <hem@...>
Date: Tue, 16 Apr 1996 00:27:43 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Hagadah Question

The wise son asks for details and sys that "Hashem, our G-d, has
commanded you".  Thus, he includes himself in those who need to know how
to perform the mitzvos and shows he wants to be part of the people.  In
his case, the "you" means that he was not present as his father was even
though he acknowledges that he must still follow Hashem.

The wicked son uses "you" as you old fashioned, superstitious yokels 
still do that primitive voodoo.  I am too enlightened to fall for that.

|  Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz |     Im ain ani li, mi li?      |
|   <H.E.Markowitz@...>   |   V'ahavta L'raiecha kamocha   |


From: <sbechhof@...> (Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer)
Date: Mon, 15 Apr 1996 22:43:40 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Re: Hagadah Question: Is the Wise Son Righteous?

The question of the difference between the Wise and Wicked sons in the
Hagada currently under discussion here is a classic, and one that, as
usual, occupied us this year at the Seder as well, when, it hit me...

Wise is not synonymous with Righteous!

This is a Chacham, not a Tzaddik.

They are indeed asking the same question, but the Chacham asks in a wise
way, not in an evil way!


Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer


From: Joshua W. Burton <jburton@...>
Date: Thu, 28 Mar 96 15:47:00 -0600
Subject: Re: Oat Matza and Rav Schachter

Nahum Spirn writes:
> If oats are indeed NOT a relative of barley (botanists out there?),
> we would be forced to say that "oats" is a mistranslation of the
> Mishna's "shiboles shu'al" and that oats could not be used.

Two Pesahs ago, this same thread came up, and I dug up some old notes
on this subject.  I'm not a botanist, but economic and dietary history
is one of my continuing interests.  Anyway, here were my remarks at
that time....

Ari Kurtz remarks:

> The problem is that what is called today oat is not necessarily the
> "shibolet shaul " quoted by Chazal . In fact Proffessor Felix who has
> written books on identifying the animals and vegetation mention in the
> Torah and by the Sages ZL' . Actually highly doubts that oat is shibolat
> for the simple fact that oat was only discovered in America and there is
> no proof that oat ever grew in the Middle East . This arises the
> question is oat one of the five speices or not even though shibolet is
> commanly translated to oat .

I'm afraid this is just wrong.  Every Californian knows that the wild
oats (or `Spanish oats', as they are still occasionally called) that now
cover the hills are an exotic import from the Old World---a wildly
successful one, to be sure: I doubt there is an intact square mile of
native grass and sedge left anywhere in the state.  The rule is that
trees, whose ancestors date back to before the two land masses
separated, usually have close relatives in the other hemisphere, while
grass, which is only about 20-25 MY old (as is the horse that depends on
it!) is usually on one side or the other.  Barley, wheat, oats, rye,
rice, millet, and sorghum (plus kasha, which is not really a grain at
all) are Old World; corn, amaranth, quinoa, and wild rice are New World.

So why don't we think of oats as a `classical' grain?  Well, for one
thing, they seem to be the youngest of the lot, in terms of human
cultivation, dating only to classical times.  (Barley and wheat both go
back to the dawn of agriculture.)  Both Theophrastus and Pliny mention
the oat as a medicinal weed, and it sure looks to me (a complete novice)
as if they are talking about genus Avena---spreading tip, two florets
per spike.  However, they both thought it was a diseased form of wheat,
since it was apparently found in single tall weedy strands mixed in with
the domestic wheat crop.  It needs a lot of water to grow well, so it
didn't really come into its own until the moldboard plow and modern
horse-collar opened up the dank forests of northern Europe.  Also, it's
quite fatty for a grain, and accordingly has a tendency to go rancid
unless steam-treated (Cheerios) or separated from the bran (oatmeal).
Also, oats are pretty strongly flavored---Dr. Johnson's dictionary has
that famous jape about oats being horsefeed "which in Scotland supports
the people".  To this day we don't grow much---per capita worldwide,
perhaps 20 lb. a year, against 250 lb. of wheat, 200 each of rice and
corn, 80 of barley, 40 of millet and sorghum, and 15 of rye.  And enough
of the oats go to animal feed that I bet humans eat several times as
much rye as oats.

One more thing: oats, though rich in protein, have almost none of the
glutinous protein that stretches elastically and holds in the air
bubbles.  So while oats can certainly become hametz in a halakhic sense,
they can't rise even to the limited extent that rye or corn can.  This,
of course, is precisely why they are so attractive to people on a
gluten-restricted diet.

                    _._ _  _ ___ _ ___   _  _ _ _ _ _ _ _   _  _ _ _ _._ ___ _ 
Joshua W. Burton     | |( ' )   |.| . |  ( ' ) | | | | | |   \  )( (  ) |   | |
(401)435-6370        | | )_/    | |___|_  )_/   /|_|   | |  __)/  \_)/  ||  |  
<burton@...> |                          ..      .     -    `.         :


From: <aaron.g@...> (Aaron Gross)
Date: Wed, 27 Mar 1996 01:18:01 -0800
Subject: Pour Out Thy Wrath

At last year's seder, among the mix of observance levels at the table,
when it came to the paragraph "Pour out Thy wrath," after birkat
hamazon, I was at a loss for words to explain, perhaps, the least
"politically correct" aspect of the Haggadah.

Any recommendations would be most appreciated.

Aaron D. Gross -- email:  <aaron.g@...>, aaron.gross@wla.com
URL: http://www.geocities.com/RodeoDrive/1123  GEOCITIES COOL SITE: 9/24/95


From: Michael and Abby Pitkowsky <pitab@...>
Date: Mon, 15 Apr 96 22:34:22 PDT
Subject: The Five Grains

An essential work to consult when discussing agriculture of the Mishnaic
period is HaTzomeh VeHaHai VeClei Haklaut BeMishnah by Yehudah
Felix,Institute for Mishnah Research, 1985.  Yehudah Felix is, if not
the expert, one of the world's experts on issues relating to agriculture
in the rabbinic period.  According to Felix, the following are the
proper identities of the five grains:

Hita-hard wheat, bread wheat
Shipon-spelt wheat
Kusemet-rice wheat
Shibolet Shual-two rowed barley

The question is, what does a posek do with this information
and how may it influence hilchot pesah.

Name: Michael Pitkowsky
E-mail: <pitab@...> 


From: <DaveTrek@...> (David Brotsky)
Date: Mon, 8 Apr 1996 13:05:54 -0400
Subject: Using Welches Grape Juice For Kiddush

Is there any problem using Welches Grape Juice for kiddush or the four cups
on Pesach. I have heard that there is a controversy over its use because it
is 'from concentrate'. Has this issue been resolved one way or another?

David Brotsky


From: Mordechai Torczyner <mat6263@...>
Date: Tue, 16 Apr 1996 01:32:50 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Wicked Son/Wise Son

	While the answers to explain the Wise Son's uses of "Eschem"
[You] have been interesting, and explain our edition of the Hagadah, it
is worthwhile to note that the text of the 4 Children in the Jerusalem
Talmud (70b in the standard edition) alters the Pasuk for the Wise son,
rendering it "Osanu" - US. The commentators there (Penei Moshe, or
Sheyarei Korban, I forget) state that the alteration is made to show his
true emphasis, meaning the issue of the "Edos and Chukim" [the laws]. It
seems implicit that the more important aspect is that of the 4 answers,
rather than the 4 questions, considering the way they adhere more
closely to the question-passages than the answer-passages.
						Mordechai Torczyner
Want to find that story about R' Yishma'el Ben Elisha?
Want to know where the Gemara cooks up the ingredients for Matzah?
WEBSHAS! http://pages.nyu.edu/~mat6263, Leave the Keywords at Home


From: Kenneth Posy <kenneth.posy@...>
Date: Mon, 15 Apr 1996 22:32:39 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Wise Son vs Wicked son.

Regarding both the chacham and rasha using the word "you", we discuss
this issue every year at our seder, and I have heard many explinations,
based on both pshat and drash.
	IMHO, on one hand, the paragraph (it's really only one, although
it is broken up in most versions of the hagadah) that discusses the four
sons is trying to explain the four different questions that the _Torah_
asks. However, it is also a form of educational manual, talking about an
abstract scenario.  This can be seen from the fact that the answers do
not correspond to the ones the Torah uses.  If the Baal Hagada merely
wanted to explain the Torah's uses of four different questions, it
should also explain the use of the four answers associated with
them. IMHO, the Hagada already had the model of four sons, and assigned
the verses to them. Thus, the Hagadah chooses to emphasise the use of
"you" in the Rasha's statement as part of the definition of his
character and perspective, because that is what a rasha does. When the
chacham uses the same word, the Hagada defines his intention
differently.  The Hagadah is not understanding that the verse quoted is
necessarily spoken by a rasha because it uses the word "you". The actual
words used are less important that the overall approach that a rasha
chooses to take, which is one of seperation from the community. The
pasuck that the Hagadah uses is the only one of the four that that
message can be drawn (since the chacham's pasuk says "elokeinu"). But it
does not follow that you _must_ interpret the use of the second person
as exclusionary.
 Just a possibility,
Betzalel Posy


End of Volume 23 Issue 65