Volume 25 Number 98
                      Produced: Sun Feb  2 13:11:03 1997

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

6th commandment
         [Shalom Carmy]
Artscroll's Sixth Commandment Mistranslation (2)
         [Gilad J. Gevaryahu, Robert A. Book]
Cold Cream (issue of Mimarei-ach on Shabbos)
         [Mark J. Feldman]
Hashem making couples
         [Ezriel Krumbein]
Hashem Making Couples
         [Stuart Schnee]
Lashon Hara about Tradesmen
         [Janice Gelb]
Neta Revai
         [Ezriel Krumbein]
Problems with Artscroll Siddur
         [Moishe Kimelman]
Status of person in process of Converting
         [Shimon Lebowitz]
What is Causation
         [Russell Hendel]
Why do they cheat
         [Carl Singer]


From: Shalom Carmy <carmy@...>
Date: Sun, 26 Jan 1997 12:09:15 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 6th commandment

Gerald Blidstein wrote a short article on the translation of Lo Tirstsah
in Tradition mid-1960's.


From: <Gevaryahu@...> (Gilad J. Gevaryahu)
Date: Sun, 26 Jan 1997 11:37:15 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Artscroll's Sixth Commandment Mistranslation

Jonathan Abrams (MJ 25#85) suggests to translate the Hebrew 'lo
tirtzach' not as 'thou shall not murder' or as 'kill' but,

> Personally, I have always felt that the best translation for "Lo
>Tirtzach" (You shall not ...) is -You shall not shed innocent blood-.
>Although somewhat wordy, I feel that this seems to cover all bases as it
> were.

IMHO this is getting worse not better. "al tishpoch dam naki" is "You
shall not shed innocent blood". 'Tirtzach' is best translated as
'murder'. The issue of 'shogeg' [unintentional murder] will come up in
beit din as defense, and then it will become a commuted 'harigah'. There
is no premeditated retzach be'shogeg. [A plan to murder someone without
intention- if it is planned, then it is intentional]. Artscoll erred in
this translation, and I hope they will fix it in the next edition.

Gilad J. Gevaryahu

From: Robert A. Book <rbook@...>
Date: Sun, 26 Jan 1997 11:09:58 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Artscroll's Sixth Commandment Mistranslation

Alan Cooper <amcooper@...> writes:
> Aaron D. Gross <adg@...> wrote:
> >Has anyone ever heard an explanation why Artscroll consistantly
> >translates "lo tirtzach" as "You shall not kill" instead of "You shall
> >not murder"?  This is in all their siddurim, the Stone Chumash, and
> >everything else I've seen of theirs.  I just don't get it.
> I cannot speak for Artscroll, obviously, but would defend their
> translation on traditional grounds.  The second table of the "Ten
> Commandments [dibberot]" does not comprise "laws" as such, but
> statements of the basic principles that underlie the Torah's
> jurisprudence.  The normal exegetical tendency, therefore, is to seek as
> *broad* an application as possible for each dibber, not a narrow
> technical meaning.  Thus, for example, Malbim takes "lo tirtsach" as a
> general admonition against committing any act that would cause bodily
> harm to another person (possibly leading to bloodshed or death).  In
> like manner, "lo tignov" forbids transgression against the property of
> another (not just "theft" or "kidnapping" in some technical legal
> sense).

However, the commentary in the ArtScroll siddur specifically states
that "Lo tignov" (which they translate as "You shall not steal")
actually means only that you should not kidnap someone and use them as
a slave, and that this only applies of the "someone" is a Jew.  This
seems like they are taking the opposite view, that the Ten
Commandments are intended as very specific laws.  I assume, of course
that they regard the stealing of objects and kidnapping of non-Jews as
prohibitted elsewhere, and not permitted.

--Robert Book    <rbook@...>
  University of Chicago


From: Mark J. Feldman <MFeldman@...>
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 11:20:28 -0500
Subject: Cold Cream (issue of Mimarei-ach on Shabbos)

When Rav Hershel Schachter gave shiurim on Maseches Shabbos, he
emphasized that Rav Soloveitchik zt'l believed that Mimarei-ach
(smoothing a paste) applies only when the paste creates a new surface.
This is reasonable since Mimarei-ach is a toldah of Mimachek, which
involves creating a new surface by rubbing a rough surface.  Indeed, Rav
Shalom Kaminetsky (of Yeshiva of Philadelphia) told me that he had heard
from poskim in Lakewood that when a person is sick (choleh she'ain bo
sakena), this can be relied upon (to apply an ointment which will be
absorbed by the skin); of course since issurei d'rabbanan may often be
violated for a sick person, there is no proof from here that those
poskim would permit it for those who are not sick.

On the other hand, Rav Brown of Yeshiva of Far Rockaway (in his sefer
about Shabbos and in conversation with me) believes that it is
problematic to apply cold cream (used by women) because even though it
is absorbed by the skin, it makes the skin smoother.  He differentiates
this case from the case brought by the Magen Avraham permitting rubbing
spit (rok) into the ground, since in the latter case there is no
smoothing that occurs to the ground, while in the former, the skin
becomes smoother.

Can anyone provide the basis for Rav Soloveitchik's thesis that
mimarei-ach requires the creation of a new surface?  Also, a summary of
what various poskim hold regarding cold cream would be appreciated.

Kol Tuv,


From: Ezriel Krumbein <ezsurf@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 23:49:43 -0800
Subject: Hashem making couples

> From: <jackst@...> (Jack Stroh)
> What is the source in the gemara that Hashem now spends his time making
> Shiduchim? Thanks.

The source is Beraishis Rabah  Vayeitzei Parasha 68:4 where Matrunah (I
guess a matron) asks R Y ( I think Yehoshua) ben Chalafta how long did
it take for Hashem to create the world?  RY"BCh answered in 6 days as it
say Shemos 36 (quote) So she asked what has he been doing since then?
Answers  RY"BCh Hashem is making pairs (ie. wedding couples)

sorry for the poor translation.

From: Stuart Schnee <msstu@...>
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 10:00:48 +0200 (WET)
Subject: Hashem Making Couples

On the first amud of Sotah- first perek, there is mention of Hashem making 


From: <janiceg@...> (Janice Gelb)
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 12:01:06 -0800
Subject: Lashon Hara about Tradesmen

In Vol. 25 #86, Rafi Stern writes:
> I am aware that the laws of Lashon HaRa (defamatory speech) are such
> that you are allowed or even obligated to tell relevant derogatory
> experiences about workmen to people who have a specific need to know of
> these experiences (i.e.  they are going to hire the same guy). However I
> cannot go out into the street and tell all the world about my
> experiences if there is no specific need to do so.
> My question is; where is the border? Can I/Should I spread the word
> amongst newcomers or old-timers in Bet Shemesh so that no-one will have
> the same experiences we had and in order that maybe the commercial
> culture in the city may change? If noone specifically asks me the
> question am I allowed to do so, on the assumption that everyone is in
> the same boat? For example on the Bet Shemesh email newsgroup (yes,
> there is one)? (BTW, if anyone wants to know there is a Bet Shemesh
> community home page at www.shemesh.co.il).

The community might want to consider having a volunteer "Better Business
Bureau" type of operation, where people can record their experiences,
and where other people who need services can call or write for

Janice Gelb                  | The only connection Sun has with this      
<janiceg@...>   | message is the return address. 


From: Ezriel Krumbein <ezsurf@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 23:49:43 -0800
Subject: Neta Revai

> Lon Eisenberg 
> I believe that even outside Israel, 4th year fruit is redeemed.

I believe that you do not redeem the fruit of the 4th year outside
Israel. See Rambam Zeraim Hilchos Maaser Sheni vNeta Revai chapter 9:1.
Also see Derech Emuna from Rav Chaim Keniyevsky the page 702.  It seems
that is appropriate, to redeem the fruit of the 4th year for grape
vines.  There are more stringent opinions but this seems to be the
opinion of the sources I quoted.


From: Moishe Kimelman <kimel@...>
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 16:19:45 +1000
Subject: Problems with Artscroll Siddur

As it's less than thirty days before Purim Kattan, I think it's
reasonable that I also mention my complaints about the Artscroll Siddur.

Whenever my father wants to describe a town in Poland that was so small
that it could have had "Welcome to Smalltown" (no connection with
Superman) and "You are now leaving Smalltown" on the same sign, he says
that it was "azoi grois vi tal imutter in a klein sidderel" (as big as
the words "v'sein tal umattar" in a small siddur). The implication being
that those words are generally printed in a font that is smaller than
than the average sized font used in the siddur.

OTOH, whenever he refers to oversized writing he uses the expression
"kiddish levuneh oisiyes", as the text used for the monthly blessing
said over the new moon was generally printed in very large type so that
when kiddush levanah was said outside at night, the tefillah could be
read in the semi-darkness.

I have checked Artscroll, and both "tal umaatar" and kiddush levanah are
printed in standard sized fonts.  How can I forgive this veering away
from tradition?


From: Shimon Lebowitz <shimonl@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 1997 12:54:50 +0200
Subject: Re: Status of person in process of Converting

<gershon.dubin@...> (Gershon Dubin) wrote:

>>Apropos of all this, what's the status of someone between mila and
> There was a major controversy about this in Jerusalem about 100
>years ago.  The most important question there was not those you asked,
>but what the person's status was on the intervening Shabbos: a nonjew
>who is not permitted to observe Shabbos, or a Jew who is required to?

I once heard, and i apologize for NOT remembering where, or in whose
name, that Avraham Avinu had a similar problem. He kept all the mitzvot,
so wanted to keep shabbos too, but as he was before Matan Torah he was
technically not a Jew, and was forbidden to!

The solution I was told, was to walk outside, 'carrying' something,
which is a melacha, and therefore chilul shabbos, *but*... it had to be
something that is NOT considered carrying for a Jew.

He managed this by wearing tzitzis: a Jew is not *carrying* his tzitzis,
and can go out with them on shabbos. But for a non Jew they have no
meaning and serve no purpose, so as a Non Jew, he was 'carrying' on

Shabbat Shalom,

Please pray for my cousin and a friend:
  Aharon Yitzchak ben Devorah Leah - already received self-supplied transplant 
  Chaim Asher Zelig ben Sarah - receiving an incompatible bone marrow
May G-d grant that these procedures succeed, and their lives be spared!! 
Shimon Lebowitz             ----->  Please note NEW email:
Jerusalem, Israel                   mailto:<shimonl@...>
http://www.randomc.com/~shimon/    IBMMAIL: I1060211


From: <rhendel@...> (Russell Hendel)
Date: Thu, 2 Jan 1997 13:18:59 -0500
Subject: What is Causation

Yisrael Rozen, V25#61, writes concerning grama (cause) that

>>I would like to clarify that UNEQUIVOCALLY that a chain of events
which is set off by man is considered his responsibility, as regarding
the laws of Shabbat and the laws of damages.>>

But (a) a person who throws a rock at a palm tree and a palm falls and
kills a baby does NOT go into exile (because he is not perceived as
causing it)(Rambam, Murder, 6:15), while (b) a person who killsa person
by ricoshaying a rock off a wall DOES go into exile from accidental
murder(Rambam,Murder 3:12)

It would therefore seem that causation is complicated and depends on
immediacy, the number of acts involved and the number of objects. Does
anyone have a good explanation/clarification?

Russell Jay Hendel, Ph.d.,ASA, rhendel @ mcs drexel edu


From: Carl Singer <CARLSINGER@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 97 13:15:33 UT
Subject: Why do they cheat

Dr. Handel Writes:
> But that is our answer to Tova. A yeshiva student who e.g. comes from a
> big family which can't make ends meet and e.g whose father is say
> discriminated on the job--this student does not perceive the world as
> having ANY justice or fairness. EVERYTHING to this student is TRUST. I
> can't permit him to cheat but I do understand where he is coming
> from. Also, a way to remedy the problem is not to say he is mechallel
> hashem but to help provide him (and his family) with a secure
> environment where a sense of equity exists.

I'm not quite sure that I'm comfortable with the above reply - it may
provide a sociological explanation, reason or excuse, but it doesn't to
me address an underlying issue in this forum -- that of Torah and midos.


1) Many people come / came from hard circumstances and don't do things
such as cheat (or you can fill in the blank with other behaviors)

2) Many who come / came from the lap of luxury and opportunity do things
such as cheat .... what of them?

In a Torah-oriented forum such as this my concern is why SOME people who
teach / learn and LIVE Torah behave in certain ways.

Carl A. Singer, Ph.D.              <csinger@...>


End of Volume 25 Issue 98