Volume 23 Number 80
                       Produced: Tue Apr 30 20:31:07 1996

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

         [Avi Feldblum]
BA'omer and LA'omer
         [Isaac Balbin]
Covering eyes
         [Martin Friederwitzer]
Deposits on pop bottles
         [Chaim Shapiro]
Looking for help with a project
         [Aryeh Blaut]
Lost Ring
         [Arthur J Einhorn]
Mikvah - Older Woman
         [Rivka Finkelstein]
On being a Disciple
         [R. Shaya Karlinsky]
Shiduchim and Kollelim
         [Harry Maryles]
The Aguna Problem and Rabbinic Discourse
         [David Riceman]
The German Tradition of Bringing a "Wimpel"
         [Robyn Safier]


From: Avi Feldblum <feldblum@...>
Date: Tue, 30 Apr 1996 20:21:39 -0400
Subject: Administrivia

Hello All,

I've received a few questions about what is going on with mail-jewish
and Shamash. The latter question is more difficult to properly answer,
and I'll pass on the full answer till a later date (maybe next
week). For the immediate issues, the Shamash server has been acting up a
bit this week, when the system is working properly then Ephraim or work
has kept me busy, so as a result, we have had somewhat spotty activity
this week. I'm going to try and get a whole bunch of issues out tonight,
and then I expect it will be quiet until Sunday. I hope to back in the
full swing of things next week, and only hope the system behaves then.

Avi Feldblum


From: Isaac Balbin <isaac@...>
Date: Fri, 19 Apr 1996 11:28:57 +1000
Subject: BA'omer and LA'omer

  |     BTW, there are two recensions for the Omer count... BA'omer and
  | LA'omer .One is found in most ARTSCROLL siddurim/machzorim, the other in
  | the RCA edition (because it was Rav Soloveitchik's z"l version?)  Does
  | anyone know the SOURCE for the difference?

It was not Rav Soloveitchik's version, to my knowledge. According to
Nefesh Horav, he said both.


From: <martin.friederwitzer@...> (Martin Friederwitzer)
Date: Mon, 22 Apr 96 11:19:13 EST
Subject: Covering eyes

Art Scroll just published a book of Rabbi Michel Barenbaums's (Masgiach
Ruchni of MTJ) Sichos Mussar on the Parshiot. On Parshat Vayikra (page
163-165) he speaks about Derch Eretz. At the end of the Sicha he says "
We find that the sages even caution us to act with Derech Eretz while
performing mitzvos. For example according to the Aruch and Rosh, the
reason we cover our eyes while reciting the first verse of Shma is that
we move our eyes in all four directions at this time symbolizing our
recognition of Hashems mastery over the entire world. Since such eye
movements would seem bizarre to others it is proper to cover one's
eyes..." I never knew this and thought that I would share it.  Whether
one should take off one's glasses and cover his eyes with his tallis I
have no comment . 

Moishe Friederwitzer


From: Chaim Shapiro <ucshapir@...>
Date: Mon, 29 Apr 1996 15:06:55 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Deposits on pop bottles

	I am an advid pop drinker, usually downing several bottles a 
day.  Recently, I noticed that many bottles of pop in the Chicago area 
say that there is a $.10 refund for your deposit in the State of Michigan.
My question is simple.  Can I take bottles purchased in Illinois without 
a deposit, to Michigan and recieve a refund?
Chaim Shapiro


From: <AryehBlaut@...> (Aryeh Blaut)
Date: Tue, 23 Apr 1996 21:10:55 -0400
Subject: Looking for help with a project

I am in need of an idea for a not-too-difficult, easy to put together,
etc.  project for a "Mitzva Fair" project.  This is for a 4th grade
class (two - 17 student classes).

Ideally, the project should contain some level of "research" and then a
"hands-on" project to go with it.

Any ideas will be appreciated.


R' Aryeh Blaut

PS:  I need this information ASAP (I have less than a month to put this


From: Arthur J Einhorn <0017801@...>
Date: 23 Apr 1996 12:29:12 GMT
Subject: Lost Ring

I was at a chasana in New York in March. While the Kallah had her
diamond ring off for washing it disappeared. Have MJers heard of any
similar incidents or is this a random occurance? I hope it is not
symptomatic of others but at least let others be aware.

Ahron Einhorn


From: <ac672@...> (Rivka Finkelstein)
Date: Thu, 25 Apr 1996 17:38:37 -0400
Subject: Mikvah - Older Woman

As R. Grafstein mentioned the MItzvah of going to the Mikvah remains with
a woman forever, even after menapause, until she immerses herself in a
Kosher Mikvah. It is true that it is scary sometimes, but I was blessed
with living in a small city in Canada, where my husband was a Rabbi, and I
was priveledged to accompany many older women to the Mikvah. The best way
I found was to first change the unknown to known by taking your mother or
any woman to see a Mikvah first and see what is involved. Most women are
pleasantly surprised when they see how clean and attractive and private,
and something very perxonal that they do that just between themselves and
G-d and of course there husband. This one mitzvah is the only one that can
only be performed by a woman, so it's all in her hands. The rewards are
for a lifetime. As for what R. Grafstein mentioned about the possibility
of maby a lake and maybe a loose bathing suit and maybe she totally
immmersed and maybe it was at the appropriate time, does not make up for
the total experience of preparing and immersing and performing the Mitzvah
in a Kosher Mikvah.

Good Luck and be gentle
Rivka Finkelstein


From: R. Shaya Karlinsky <msbillk@...>
Date: Tue, 30 Apr 1996 07:41:06 +0300 (WET)
Subject: On being a Disciple

     In a recent issue of Mail.Jewish, someone mentioned a definition of
discipleship that he had heard from his Rebbeim in Ohr Samayeach, and
asked for a source.  The definition was that a true disciple doesn't
simply repeat what the Rebbe had said -- that is a tape recorder.  A
true Talmid (disciple) is so connected to his Rebbe and so imbued with
his Torah that he is able to say what the Rebbe WOULD have said in a
situation that the talmid had NOT heard about explicitly from him.
     I suspect that the writer heard this from some of his Rebbeim who
learned in the Mir Yeshiva, as this was a famous chidush of Reb Chaim
Shmuelevitz, zt"l, that he was fond of saying in numerous shmuzin.  It
can be found his "Sichos Mussar" (5731/#23, page 77-78, Hebrew edition).
It is based on Reb Chaim's interpretation of the Gemara in Sukkah (28a)
that teaches: Rebbe Eliezer testified on himself that he NEVER said
something that he hadn't heard from the mouth of his rebbe.  Reb Chaim
asked how this was possible, and brought proof that this statement
cannot be interpreted literally.  Rather, it means that Rebbe Eliezer
never rendered a judgment or opinion until he had clarified for himself
with certainty that his Rebbe would have rendered the halacha as he was
going to do it. In a case where he couldn't be sure how his Rebbe would
have issued the psak, he refused to issue his own opinion.  THAT, said
Reb Chaim, is a true Talmid, a real disciple.
     The way to reach that coveted state, taught Reb Chaim, is great
humility and close personal contact with great Torah scholars.  Two
commodities that seem to be in unfortunate short supply these days.

Rabbi Shaya Karlinsky              Darche Noam Institutions
Yeshivat Darche Noam/ Shapell's    PO Box 35209
Midreshet Rachel for Women         Jerusalem, ISRAEL
Tel: 972-2-651-1178                Fax: 972-2-652-0801


From: <Harrymaryl@...> (Harry Maryles)
Date: Sun, 21 Apr 1996 00:28:06 -0400
Subject: Shiduchim and Kollelim

 The subject of shiduchim is one that is near and dear to my heart, as I
have two daughters who are presently in the "parsha".  There seems to be
a malaise in the orthodox community with regard to shiduchim.  I was
recently told of a situation which exists in the city of Lakewood that
is intolerable!  It seems there is a group of young marriageable girls,
ages approximatly 18 to 23 or so that are considered unmarriageable!
This is due to the fact that their fathers are sitting in kollel and are
not able to give support to potential sons-in-law so that they can sit
and learn after they get married.  How ironic it is that a generation
ago these fathers were in the very same situation themselves and were
most likely able to get the same type of support from their
fathes-in-law that potential suitors for their daughters are now
seeking. These Bochurim are now rejecting the daughters of these Kollel
men because of their inability to support!!  It seems unfair that these
men who were "doing the right thing" are now unable to marry off their
own daughters because of it!  What kind of system is it that produces
this type of situation?  I think it is related to the greater problem
that I wrote about earlier on mail jewish about post Highschool
 Recapping breifly what I stated earlier is that Roshei Yeshiva are
incorrectly  not guiding their students into a more productive life and are
therefore inadvertantly creating a large community of  Batllanim of varying
degrees!  Now by this I don't mean to say that their shoudn't be any
kollelim.  There should be kollelim and they should be populated by men who
have the potential to be the Yechidei Segula (i.e. Future Gedolei Hador!) and
these Yungeleit should be well paid by the community to just sit and learn.
But!...they should be an elitest group not the vast numbers of members of the
constantly mushrooming kolleim that we see today.  The jewish community
simply doesn't have the money to support the present day situation.  This
situation did not exist in Europe because the Yeshiva system perforce
economically had to be an elitest system.  Only those bochurim who had the
potential to be Gedolim were invited to go to a yeshiva like Voloshin.
Everybody else went to work. There was no mass jewish education like there is
today in the U.S. Today there is mass education and virtually every orthodox
jewish child is inculcated with the idea that Learning Torah full time is the
ultimate goal that they should aspire to.  All other aspirations are negated.
Hence we have what we have today...a glut of  mediocrity in learning at the
adult level, few of which have even enough money to support their large
families, let alone future sons-in-law and their ultinmately large famlies.
 Instead of earning a decent living and teaching their children the
value of same, they are barely scraping by!  What will the future be
like for their children?  Most likely they too will be incucated with
the idea that Learning is the epitome of man and will ultimitly end up
like their fathers, living the kollel life without being as productive
as they should be in a feild where - chosen with the wisdom and guidance
of parents, teachers, rabbeim, and Roshei Yeshiva they could be a
blessing, and not a burden to Klal Israel.

     So, what we now have is this major problem that I suspect most Roshei
Yesiva are aware of and do nothing about.   One of the more serious problems
that arise from this is that if you teach your children this particular
Hashkafa then finding a shidach becomes almost  impossible!  The young men
that my daughters have dated either have their noses buried in a gemmorah or
do not value learning at all.  Where is the happy medium?  Why has this
become a world of extremes?   In this weeks Pirke Avos it states: Yaffa
Talmud Torah Im Derech Eretz, Sheyiga-as Shneihem Mishcachas Avon, VeChol
Torah She-ayn emoh Melocha Sofo Betailah.   Good advice when it was
written...good aadvise now!      

Harry Maryles

I would like to make one correction to my [last] (above) post. [Messages
combined by moderator]
  My Daughters pointed out to me that it was incorrect to say that the
gentlemen that they have dated were to be pegged as either having "their
nose buried in a gemmorah" or not "valuing learning at all".  It is
unfair to say this about these gentleman as I don't really know them
and, as my daughters both say they could not really fit into a
particular mold.  The truth is that I did exagerate to make the point
and for that I sincerely apologize.  I, also, happen to know a few of
these very fine gentleman and they trully do not represent the extremes
which I have painted.  My Daughters have tried to date those whose
hashkafa mostly agrees with their own eventhough they haven't always
succeeded.  But... I still believe that the essence of my last post is
true: Most yeshiva educated orthodox bochurim do fall into one category
or the other and even though no two people are exactly alike and there
are individual differences, the basic hashkafos of these yeshiva
bochurim are pretty much alike in the two camps.


From: <dr@...> (David Riceman)
Date: Tue, 30 Apr 1996 11:18:05 +0400
Subject: The Aguna Problem and Rabbinic Discourse

I noticed an interesting change in the discussion of the aguna issue.
It started as a legalistic discussion of halachic problems.  At some
point it became a therapeutic discussion of people's emotional reactions
to the consequences of the halachic problems, and then it shifted back.
  I can't formulate a precise question.  What I've noticed is that some
people seem uncomfortable with one or the other way of approaching these
problems.  Some seem so uncomfortable that they reject one or the other
mode completely.  Both of these modes of discourse are useful.
  I guess the question is: what are the consequences of rejecting one or
the other mode? How do other people deal with the people who won't
tolerate listening to that mode of discourse?

David Riceman


From: Robyn Safier <robyn@...>
Date: Mon, 29 Apr 1996 09:42:37 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: The German Tradition of Bringing a "Wimpel"

My nephew will be bringing a "wimpel" to shul this coming weekend.  I
was asked by my sister to find out if there are any references that she
can read to familiarize herself with the history of this tradition (this
is also for her local rabbi!) and if anyone has any interesting comments
on this tradition.  What we know is that it is a german tradition that
the child bring this "sash" to shul when he is dry, and I think it is
reused for his bar-mitzvah and even his aufruf.

thank you,
robyn safier
Robyn & Jeff Safier
173 West 78th Street Apt 9B
New York NY 10024
email: <robyn@...>


End of Volume 23 Issue 80