Volume 27 Number 42
                      Produced: Thu Dec 25 21:47:17 1997

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

A Response on My Views Of Chasidus
         [Russell Hendel]
Artifacts from Victims Remains
         [Ray Well]
Brachot on Megilot - mail-jewish Vol. 27 #38 Digest
         [Shlomo Pick]
Chalav Yisrael
         [Erik Tauber]
Chanuka as Tashlumim for Succot
         [Tszvi Klugerman]
Men dyeing Hair
         [Steve White]
Morid ha G?shem
         [Tzadik Vanderhoof]
Offer & acceptance in Halacha
         [Mark Feldman]
         [Elisheva Schwartz]
         [Daniel Israel]
Victims Remains
         [Tzvi Harris]
Women and Chanukah Lights
         [Tszvi Klugerman]


From: <rhendel@...> (Russell Hendel)
Date: Mon, 15 Dec 1997 20:35:51 -0500
Subject: A Response on My Views Of Chasidus

In response to my recent posting on Chasidus vs Mitnagduth, Rabbi
Menachem Schmidt, one of the Shlichim in Philadelphia wrote the
following.  I remarked to him that other people might be interested in
this clarification and he gave me his blessing to have it posted:


You have expressed the classic misconception about chassidus. the Baal
Shem Tov did not intend chassidus for only those not versed in torah,
but for everyone. the gemorah states (the Rebbe N"A frequently qutoes
this) "that the temple was (also) destroyed because they didn't say a
blessing before learning torah" . the idea of being steeped in torah
knowledge also brings with it the perils of the ego and the thrill of
the intellectual gain, not necesarilly at the expense of one's
relationship with G-d, but , these features of learning don't always
enhance one's relationship with G-d. the Baal Shem Tov stressed the
importance of learning (and certainly the Alter Rebbe did also), but
with care that it should create a greater tie with G-d. an idea which
scholars did find offensive, and people mistakenly consider
anti-intellectual is: tzidkus is not guaranteed by being a scholar,and
that simple people can be very great spiritually.

Russell Jay Hendel; PH.d;ASA; rhendel @ mcs drexel edu


From: Ray Well <harhas@...>
Date: Tue, 23 Dec 1997 19:01:13 -0500
Subject: Artifacts from Victims Remains

Ed Ehrlich <eehrlich@...> wrote
>>Although the reports of the Nazis making soap from the Holocaust
victims' remains are widely believed, they are not true.

Someone here in Israel once claimed that he was going to auction off
bars of soaps that were made by the Nazis from Jewish flesh during the
Holocaust.  There was an enormous public outcry for a few days, until
finally a reputable authority from Yad Vashem explained that the Nazis
did not make soap out of Jewish flesh.  This was a rumor that was spread
at the time of the Holocaust.  Apparently there were bars of soap that
had the letter "J" stamped on them because that was the initial of the
company producing the soap.  Many Holocaust survivors mistakenly
believed that this soap was created from Jewish flesh.<<

i doubt the accuracy of this post. it is known that the natzis utilised
human body parts of their victims such as hair. they also engaged in
pathologhical sick activities - so just because it might not be
economicaly feasible doesn't mean they didn't engage in it. who is the
'reputable authority' and where was that published.

i saw one of these soaps myself, taken from a concentration camp by a
world war II jewish chaplain whose relative showed it to me. the piece
of soap - gray in color - is imprinted with 'RIF 0113' on one side, on
the reverse side the date of when it was acquired, 1945, is written by
pen. it obviously was known to manufactured from jewish victims at the
time it was acquired. i was told that RIF stands for the german meaning
'pure jewish fat'.



From: Shlomo Pick <picksh@...>
Date: Wed, 24 Dec 1997 14:26:37 +0200 (WET)
Subject: Re: Brachot on Megilot - mail-jewish Vol. 27 #38 Digest

As mentioned, the custom of the prushim in the State of Israel has been
established by disciples of the Vilna Gaon who arrived in Eretz Yisrael
in the 19th century, and this has been the accepted custom in most
congregations that follow the ashkenazi rite.  An interesting
explanation for the custom of making the blessing can be found in the
Brisker Rav's (R. Yitzchak Zev - R. Velvele) commentaries to Yoma Sukka
and Kiddush ha-Chodesh and was reprinted in his commentary to
Maimonides's Mishne Tora in which he also deals with the question of
saying a blessing on half a hallel.
 Finally, Dr. R. Hendel's essay contains a number of errors.
 "The blessings over Shma serve a dual purpose...as...blessings for
Learning (=reading shma)"
 This is only true for Ahava Raba or Ahavat Olam. The first bracha on
light and day and darkness and night has nothing to do with learning,
not to mention the last one (or two by ma'ariv).  as far as learning
being equilavent to reading shma is concerned, as a "lomdus" it's nice
and the rav zt"l used it, but as far as the Posekim are concerned, the
blessing of ahava rabo or ahavat olam works as a birchat tora only if
one actually learns AFTER shmone esrei. (there is also a teshuvat
R. Moshe Feinstein, dealing with which of the 2 or 3 birchot hatora it
covers). If one takes the Meiri's view as found in Magen Avot, the
brachot have nothing to do with shma. Originally they were instituted as
"introductions" to Tefilla = shmoni esrei, and only at a later stage was
shma added in between the brachot, thus explaining why the reading of
shma can be only done by a quarter of the day, while shmone esrei and
"birchot keriyat shma" can be done until a third of the day.
 Moreover, in reference to hendel's message, shma at any time of the day
is learning, but the brachot are never learning, and after midday one is
forebidden to recite them.
 Russel's statement that "tisha b'av does not commerorate (sic) the
destruction" needs elucidation at the least.
 He seems to be also overly taken in by megillat esther being in lieu of
Hallel which is only one reason for the non-recital of hallel on Purim.
 From a strictily Halakhic point of view, the recitation of a half-hallel
is not considered being hallel at all, and thus according to Maimonides
and others, there is no blessing on it (see the brisker rav torah
mentioned at the beginning of this posting).  Many Bnei Safarad do not
recite Birchat haHallel after the first day of Passover, because
strictly speaking, all they are doing is reading Psalms, and there is no
Din of Hallel at all here.  Accordingly, on ALL the days of Pesach,
execpt for the first day, no Hallel is being said, so why isn't a
megilla read everyday?
 Shlomo Pick

Shlomo Pick
Ra'm Be-Machon Hagavoah Le-Torah
Bar-Ilan University
Ramat-Gan, Israel


From: Erik Tauber <Eriktauber@...>
Date: Wed, 24 Dec 1997 10:43:40 EST
Subject: Re: Chalav Yisrael

As for the question of Eretz Yisrael vs. chutz la'aretz in ref. to
chalav yisrael, can you please clarify the question.

Since the issue of Chalav Yisrael is not land based (i.e., eretz
yisroel), what difference does location make?



From: Tszvi Klugerman <Klugerman@...>
Date: Wed, 24 Dec 1997 09:59:19 EST
Subject: Re: Chanuka as Tashlumim for Succot

 I am looking for a midrashic or other Rabbinic source which states that
on the first Chanukah the Chashmonayim brought lulavim and etrogim into
the newly consecrated Beit Mikdash to celebrate Succot in a tashlumim
[making up for something missed - Mod.] situation.




From: Steve White <StevenJ81@...>
Date: Wed, 24 Dec 1997 15:19:50 EST
Subject: Re: Men dyeing Hair

> From: Sherman Marcus <shermanm@...>
>         Could anyone direct me to modern discussions about whether men
> are permitted to dye their hair?  A cursory glance at a Kitzur Shulchan
> ...

Specifically with respect to Grecian Formula, I don't think it's a dye
at all; as I recall, it removes the white coloring from the white hair,
leaving the remaining natural color from hair that hasn't turned white.
If that's correct, the halachic question would be different from dyeing.



From: Tzadik Vanderhoof <stvhoof@...>
Date: Wed, 24 Dec 1997 20:15:37 +0200
Subject: Morid ha G?shem

Forgive me if this was already discussed....what is known about the
dispute regarding the pronunciation of "Morid HaGeshem" vs. "HaGoshem".
I heard a rabbi in Israel say that "HaGoshem" is an innovation of the
Maskilim and it is apikursis to change the pronunciation based on the
grammatical analysis of the Maskilim, against our tradition.


From: <mark.feldman@...> (Mark Feldman)
Date: Wed, 24 Dec 1997 22:05:13 +0000
Subject: Offer & acceptance in Halacha

In American law, if X makes an offer and Y accepts the offer, under
certain conditions, an enforceable contract has been formed.  Is there
any parallel to this in Halacha?  (Sources would be appreciated, esp. if
they are accessible on the Bar Ilan CD ROM of Sha'alot U'Tshuvot.)


From: Elisheva Schwartz <yivo5@...>
Date: Tue, 23 Dec 1997 15:26:40 -0500
Subject: Re: Shidduchim

 There have been similar suggestions made in the Jewish Observer and
elsewhere (that everyone should make 3 introductions per year).  I have
a real problem with this, given that I have been the victim (and I've
considered that word!) of people trying to, apparently, make mitzvah
points--with next to no thought about the people involved.  I have been
introduced (I'm a college- and Jewishly well-educated single mother) to
total amei-ha-aretz, one of whom didn't bathe, and couldn't even make
kiddush with the text right in front of him (I had been assured that he
was an FFB.)  Oh, did I mention that he didn't work--or do anything
else--and seemed to have no manners? (One of several) Not to mention the
speech about how a person in my position shouldn't be picky?!! How about
the "learning disabled" one (This is code for retarded with many people)
I can laugh now, but it was terribly painful at the time--I was even
very specifically asked my opinion of the fellow in front of my
 My point (and I do have one)--Not everyone is cut out to be involved in
making shidduchim, and I cringe to think of the multiplication of my
experiences if it becomes the new "in" thing to do.  I, for one, do not
enjoy being "used" for someone elses hayligkeit.  There are people who
do this, and do it well, and there should be more of them, but save me
from the amateurs!!
 Elisheva Schwartz


From: Daniel Israel <daniel@...>
Date: Wed, 24 Dec 1997 12:51:05 -0700
Subject: Re: Tachnun

In v72n37, R Yehoshua <RYehoshua@...> asks about staying at the amud
during tachnun.  The reason he cites is not to leave the bimah empty.
It would appear to me that there is another possible reason.  AFAIR (I
don't have the citation handy) the Mishna Berura brings down that since
after hazaras hashatz one does not say "oseh shalom..." and take three
steps back, one should remain standing in place until the "oseh shalom"
of Kaddish, unless it is necessary to move for some other reason.  This
would clearly apply in the case of saying Hallel, for example, when
there is no need to leave the amud.  Unfortunately, I don't recall the
exact loshen [language / wording - Mod.]  of the MB, but it appeared to
me at the time that this could be read to apply to tachnun (i.e., that
one should remain at the amud, with his feet together), where it is not
actually _necessary_ to sit down.

This is all speculation on my part, if someone has heard a psak on this,
I'd be very interested.

Daniel M. Israel
University of Arizona		
Tucson, AZ			


From: Tzvi Harris <ltharris@...>
Date: Wed, 24 Dec 1997 13:29:02 +0200 (IST)
Subject: Victims Remains

Ed Ehrlich responded to the sources I wrote, that there was no soap made
from the remains of victims of the holocaust.
1.  The tshuva of Rav Uziel zt"l clearly refers to "borit", which is soap.  
2.  The second source that I had written, (HaShoah BMkorot Rabaniim) relates
the entire controversy surrounding the RIF soap.  In his footnotes on this
chapter the author (Avraham Fuchs) agrees that there was no widespread
production of soap from victims remains, however he maintains that in
particular camps soap was made from victims for local use.
3.  My intent (as I wrote Ed personally) was just to bring the sources, not
to state an opinion.

Tzvi Harris


From: Tszvi Klugerman <Klugerman@...>
Date: Thu, 25 Dec 1997 00:01:20 EST
Subject: Women and Chanukah Lights

It is common for those who follow Minhag Ashkenaz to have all members of
the household light their own chanukiot (Chanukah menorah) except for
the wife who is mitztarefet, partner, with her husband. This seems to be
the normative approach of the Rema. This seemingly requires a girl who
has grown up lighting her own chanukiah to stop doing so after her
wedding. Does anyone have a source for a custom where a woman would
continue to light her own chanukiah even in her husband's presence, and
while her husband lights his own?

Alternatively, does anyone have a svara for why she should stop lighting her
own after marriage?




End of Volume 27 Issue 42