Volume 24 Number 79
                       Produced: Sun Aug 11 17:44:32 1996

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

         [Stan Tenen]
Email and Other Items
         [Abe Rosenberg]
Haphtorah Chazon (2)
         [Jeff Fischer, Rick Turkel]
Jew and non-Jew souls
         [Yrachmiel Tilles]
Text of Nachem (4)
         [Mordy Gross, Reuven Werber, Ari Shapiro, Chaim Mehlman]
Tish'a Be'Av as Yom Tov, historically
         [Mordechai Torczyner]
Translation for Ashrei
         [Micha Berger]


From: Stan Tenen <meru1@...>
Date: Thu, 11 Jul 1996 07:26:51 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Re: Ashrei

This is from R. Nosson Scherman's Appendix to The Wisdom in the Hebrew 
Alphabet (Artscroll):

"According to Rabbi, the word _Ashuris_ is not at all related to
Assyria.  He says, "Lama nikra sh'ma ashuris, she-m'oosheret bi-kh-tav"
- Why is it called Ashuris? - because it is the most exalted of all
scripts.  As Rambam explains (Comm. to Mishnah, Yadaim 2:5), its name
implies glory and status.  It is derived from the word Ashrei, meaning
praises, fortunate, in the sense that Zilpah's second son was given the
name Asher: "B'asheri ki ashruni banos, In my good fortune! For woman
have deemed me fortunate! (Genesis 30:13)

Here is a letter by letter analysis of the operational meaning of the 

ALeF        In general, great (as in ALooF - "on top" in English, "A 
General" in Hebrew)

ShIN        Spiritual energy (as in ShINe, ShEEN - what "teeth" do.)

RESh        Reaching, RuShing, radiating outward (as from a "head" or 
from "head-waters.")

YOD         Personal will, personal consciousness, intention


Alef-Shin         Fire (Great-Energy; high spirit)
Shin-Resh         Song, Umbilic, Chief/leader, to turn aside (source of 
Spiritual energy Radiating)

Given the meaning of the individual letters and small root words that
make up the word Ashrei, it is not hard to see how and why it could mean
either "most praiseworthy" (great spiritual energy willfully rushing
into the world) and "happy" (High-spirited song)


Note: The meaning of the Hebrew name for each letter above is a summary 
of both the traditional meaning and the "operational" meaning that I 
have derived from a 3x3x3 logical matrix based on a minimal self-
organizing cycle defined by the sequence of letters in B'Reshis.  The 
English-Hebrew homonyms are not coincidences.  They are my 
identifications based on principles presented in Isaac Mozeson's "The 
Word", an English dictionary based on Hebrew roots.

As usual, those who would like to see more about the 3x3x3 logical 
matrix that gives Hebrew letter meanings (and related matters) should 
send me their surface mail address and I will send a packet of 
introductory materials and a short videotape that shows some of the 3-
dimensional models this work is based on.  (There is no cost and no 
obligation - other than that I would appreciate comments and criticism 
from those who have examined the materials.)

Hopefully our (Meru Foundation) website - with full graphics and much 
text - will be available in a few weeks:  http://www.meru.org


From: <jacabraham@...> (Abe Rosenberg)
Date: Sun, 21 Jul 1996 11:49:04 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Email and Other Items

Regarding email and other related items, I have a couple of questions.

Can you send email to a part of the world where it is Shabbat at the
time you send it (I'm assuming it is NOT Shabbat where YOU are!)

Can you access a Web page maintained in a location where it is currently
Shabbat? For that matter, can you access the Web AT ALL on Erev Shabbat
or Motzaei Shabbat, since it's likely a part of the Web is being
maintained in a location where it is still Shabbat.

I would assume that in none of these cases are you guilty personally of
Sabbath violation. However, do the prohibitions of Lifnei Iver, or
Nehneh Mimelechet Shabbat come into play here? Further, suppose you got
on a plane right after Shabbat, and began traveling west, until you
crossed enough time zones to land in a place where Shabbat had not
ended. You WOULD be violating the Shabbat. If you "travel" via email or
the Web, would the same rules apply?

Abe Rosenberg
Los Angeles


From: <rabbi_gabbai@...> (Jeff Fischer)
Date: Tue,  6 Aug 1996 05:09:27, -0500
Subject: Haphtorah Chazon

Alan Rubin writes:

>It is the custom in my synagogue to read the maftir on the Shabbos before 
>9th Ab using the tune for Echah.  I have always felt that this custom was 
>in error and that it was wrong to use a tune of mourning on Shabbos.  I 
>would be interested in any educated opinions.

I can understand your feelings.  At our shul, our hashkama Minyan 
reads the haphtorah with the regular trup while the regular minyan 
reads it with the nigun of Aychah.

But let me ask you...If you think that it is is inappropriate to lein
the haphtorah to the nigun of Aychah, then what about the pasuk of
"Aychah Esa levadi" in the 2nd Aliya of leining?  We lein that with the
nigun of Aychah.  Should that be changed also?

Jeff (Gabbai of Young Israel of Passaic - Clifton, NJ)

From: <rturkel@...> (Rick Turkel)
Date: Tue, 6 Aug 1996 11:16:44 -0400
Subject: Re: Haphtorah Chazon

AFAIK, this is the common minhag for this shabbat, along with the
chanting of Lecha Dodi, Kel Adon and Adon `Olam to the tune of Eli
Tsiyon.  I believe that it's even indicated in the standard shul
calendar.  It seems to be so widespread that it would be hard to reverse
(minhag kedin hu).  Personally, I think it's a shame that the tune of
Eli Tsiyon has the association with tish`a beav, since it's a beautiful
tune I'd like to hear at other times, too.

Rick Turkel         (___  _____  _  _  _  _  __     _  ___   _   _  _  ___
<rturkel@...>)oh.us|   |  \  )  |/  \     |    |   |   \__)    |
<rturkel@...>        /      |  _| __)/   | ___)    | ___|_  |  _(  \    |
Rich or poor, it's good to have money.  Ko rano rani | u jamu pada.

[<mordy_gross@...> (Mordy Gross) also points out the Minhag Yisrael
Din thought for the use of the Aicha tune. Mod]


From: <ascent@...> (Yrachmiel Tilles)
Date: Sun, 11 Aug 1996 16:13:21 +0300
Subject: Re: Jew and non-Jew souls

I was asked if there is an intrinsic difference between the soul of a Jew
and that of a non-Jew,  and if so, prove it.    I refered him to a passage
in Tanya (last section of ch.1; first section. of ch.2).  He then asked 1)
do all orthodox believe this (that Jews and non-Jews are different in
essence, not just in codes of behavior or even in chosenness)?  and 2) If
yes, is there a more normative, universally accepted source that makes the
point.   Can you help on this?

Yrachmiel Tilles
PO Box 296        |    e-mail: <ascent@...> (YT)
13102 Tsfat       |    tel: 06-921364, 971407 (home: 972056)
ISRAEL            |    fax: 972-6-921942 (attn. Y.Tilles)


From: <mordy_gross@...> (Mordy Gross)
Date: Tue, 6 Aug 1996 08:42:06 PST
Subject: Re: Text of Nachem

>I was curious how others handle davening mincha on Tisha B'Av.
>Nachem.. to me seems pretty problematic due to its inherent skekker
>[Falsehood - Mod.].  Describing Yerushalayim as "Shomemah meein yoshev"
>is pretty much a lie.  More people/jews live in Yerushalayim now than at
>any time in history.

The idea of 'Shomemah Meein Yoshev' does not necessarily mean no one is
living there, but that we don't have the same Yerushalayim as we once
did. Meaning, no Bais Hamikdash, no Achdus among K'lal Yisrael, the
Jewish people, no real control over what happens politically in
Yerushalayim, no Sanhedrin, nothing of what Yerushalayim actually
represented to us. In this respect, Yerushalyim is in ruins.

To explain: No Achdus- There are so many political parties, so much
fighting going on in Yerushalayim, such that we can't imagine to have a
shard of Achdus.  Even though Yerushalyim does have more people than it
did in the days before the Churban, how many of those are religious? how
many of these religious are on par to the religious of those days? We
can't compare Yerushalyim of now to that of old.

From: Reuven Werber <reuw@...>
Date: Tue,  6 Aug 96 22:09 +0300
Subject: Text of Nachem

In reply to Adam Schwartz - who has a problem with the traditional text
of the Nachem Afternoon prayer insert in describing Jerusalem as
desolated & destroyed - Rav CH.D. Halevi in his responsa (Aseh Lecha Rav
- vol 1 - siman 14 - has the same problem- not wanting to lie in prayer.
He adds one word "shayta chareva, etc. - Jerusalem which *was* in ruins.
He also changes a word - from "Shehi yoshevet" - to "shehi yashva"- she
(Jerusalem) *sat* not "sits" in mourning. In this way he avoids
declaring untruths in his prayer. He explains also why one has the
authority to make such a change in the traditional text.
Reuven Werber
Kibbutz Kfar Etzion
Phone 02-9935180
Fax   02-9935288
email - <REUW@...>

From: <m-as4153@...> (Ari Shapiro)
Date: Tue, 6 Aug 96 21:58:04 EDT
Subject: Text of Nachem

R' Shachter (in Nefesh Harav p. 79) quotes the Rav as follows(paraphrased):
'Even though Yerushalayim is under Jewish control you still have to
tear kriah(rip your garment in mourning) because the special 
kedusha (holiness) of Yerushalayim is based on the fact that it has a 
little of the kedusha of the Beis Hamikdash and since the Beis Hamikdash is
destroyed Yerushalayim is considered as if it is destroyed... Therefore
there is no need to change the nusach(wording) of Nachem because until 
there is a Beis Hamikdash in Yerushalayim the city is considered as if it
is destroyed.'

Ari Shapiro

From: Chaim Mehlman <mehlman@...>
Date: Thu, 8 Aug 1996 18:39:14 +1000
Subject: Text of Nachem

Perhaps it will help if you take the phrase in the context of the entire
prayer, and assume that it isn't only talking about the physical
Yerushalayim.  The language is clearly metaphorical -- "She sits with
her head covered in shame like a woman who never gave birth... Zion
weeps bitterly and Yerushalayim raises her voice. My heart, my heart
[breaks]... for their slain..." etc. This is not a city of wood and
stone speaking, but an expression of our entire national experience of
the past 2 millennia. For me this short paragraph is one of the most
beautiful and moving passages in our entire tefilla.

The term "Aveilei Tzion ve'et aveilei Yerushalayim" (the mourners of
Tzion and of Yerushalayim) is referring to our continuing state of
exile. This must be the case, for not every Jew lived in Yerushalayim in
Temple times, and yet we are all considered mourners. Why? Because of
what the city was and what it represented then to every Jew. "Tzion and
Yerushalayim" means much more than simply our physical occupancy of the
city. Otherwise, any city would have served. Indeed, as we have recently
seen, there are those Jews who consider Yerushalayim to be just any

Among other things, "Tzion and Yerushalayim" represented our dwelling,
secure from our enemies, all together and with unified purpose, in our
own land. In that sense alone, the metaphorical Yerushalayim is still
desolate and without her inhabitants. "Tzion and Yerushalayim"
represented many tangible signs of G-d's protection and favour which
were manifest in the Beit Hamikdash. These days we have to struggle with
a world so degraded that people can claim G-d doesn't even exist, and be
believed. Most of all, Yerushalayim is still desolate because how many
of us, whether we live there or not, sense or value her spiritual
riches? (I include myself among those who don't). Those who cherish
these riches are her "inhabitants", no matter where they live; the rest
of us are not yet.

Adam has a point of course. Our last few generations have witnessed a
return to Yerushalayim that our forefathers only dreamed about. We have
to acknowledge that with intense gratitude, both to Hashem and to the
people who fought for it. But it's only the beginning, and for most of
us only the physical aspect. It's time for the last part of Nacheim to
be fulfilled at last:

     "For You, Hashem, consumed her with fire and with fire You will rebuild 
     her, as it is said: `I will be for her, says Hashem, a surrounding wall
     of fire and I will be glorious in her midst'. Blessed are you, Hashem,
     Who consoles Tzion and rebuilds Yerushalayim".


From: Mordechai Torczyner <mat6263@...>
Date: Tue, 6 Aug 1996 08:35:14 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Tish'a Be'Av as Yom Tov, historically

> From: <elasson@...> (Elliot D. Lasson)
> Someone told me that there was a time (or year) in Jewish history when
> Tish'a B'Av was a Yom Tov.  This would have been after the destruction
> of the First Beis HaMikdash.  Can anyone verify this, or offer a source.

	There is a Gemara (on the WebShas agenda for this week, I might
plug) in Rosh HaShanah, 18a (the bottom Mishnah) to 19b, which discusses
what happened to the fasts at the time of the Second Temple. It appears
that the nature of the obligation to fast changed, for all BUT Tish'a
Be'Av, depending on the state of soveriegnty of the Jews.
	Rav Pappa (18b) specifies that because the tragedies of Tish'a
Be'Av were "doubled" [It is interesting to note that he cites 4 of the 5
tragedies, omitting the verdict condemning the generation of the Spies in
the Desert to death!]
					Mordechai Torczyner
WEBSHAS! http://www.virtual.co.il/torah/webshas & Leave the Keywords at Home


From: <micha@...> (Micha Berger)
Date: Thu, 11 Jul 1996 08:59:47 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Translation for Ashrei

R. Eliyahu Dessler (opening essay of Michtav Mei'Eliyahu I) comments on
the similarity of 'osher (with an aleph) and `osher (leading ayin). From
there, I would conclude that "ashrei" would mean "non-tangibly wealthy",
or perhaps "enriched".

Micha Berger 201 916-0287        Help free Ron Arad, held by Syria 3512 days!
<micha@...>                         (16-Oct-86 -  9-Jul-96)
<a href=news:alt.religion.aishdas>Orthodox Judaism: Torah, Avodah, Chessed</a>
<a href=http://aishdas.org>AishDas Society's Home Page</a>


End of Volume 24 Issue 79