Volume 28 Number 92
                 Produced: Wed Jun 23  6:49:28 US/Eastern 1999

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Following the Zohar
         [Zev Sero]
Hair Covering
         [Chaim Mateh]
Kaddish, Shema
         [Menashe Elyashiv]
Male / Female Names
         [Stuart Wise]
Names: Lisa, Rivka, Hudes, etc.
         [Ronald Greenberg]
Number of verses in the 10 Commandments
         [Perry Zamek]
shape of luchos
         [Eliyahu Teitz]
The Pharisees
         [David Glasner]
         [Russell Hendel]
Vaykhulu on Friday Night
         [Dov Teichman]
Women and Mitzvot
         [Gitelle Rapoport]
Yom Tov Sheni
         [Zvi Weiss]


From: cp <chips@...>
Date: Tue, 22 Jun 1999 23:46:07 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Re: Astrology

I have heard from several sources that Astrology may very well have not
been so much garbage for societies 2G years ago.  The scientific
explaination of Astrology and why in the past it was ok to use as a
"guide" was not becuase of the time of the birth, but becuase of the
time of conception! A mother's diet has consequences to the child and
pre Industrial Revolution the diet was much more dependent on the
seasons. Anthropology wise, cultures around the Equator do not have home
grown astrology beliefs nearly as varied as European or South American.



From: Zev Sero <zsero@...>
Date: Tue, 22 Jun 1999 20:46:31 -0400
Subject: Re: Following the Zohar

Paul Merling <MerlingP@...>
>          The Kiddush custom itself has an excellent lineage. The
> Mah'gein Avraham and the Bi'er Heitiv (Orach Chaim 271:1, see also the
> comments of the Machtsis Hashekel ) both bring the Minhag and state that
> the source of the Minhag is the Teekunei Shabbos. The former also brings
> Responsa of Mahril (R.163) as a source.

As I understand it (I haven't seen the sefer myself) this is one source:
the sefer `Tikunei Shabbos', which was written by the Maharil.

> Obviously this Minhag is not just a
> negative, to postpone Kiddush. It is a positive custom to use this time
> to prepare spiritually for the first Seudah/festive meal of Shabbos.
[kabbalistic rationale for delaying kiddush deleted]

Note, however, that in the original sources, this custom is given in a
positive form, rather than a negative one: to make kiddush in the hour
of Jupiter, rather than the hour of Mars, i.e. from 5-6 rather than from
6-7.  The current custom of delaying kiddush till 7 is a consequence of
usually not coming home from shul until after 6, but the correct form of
the minhag is to bring shabbos in earlier, if possible (i.e. not before
plag hamincha), and to hurry home afterwards to make kiddush before 6.
This seems to contradict Paul's explanation, which relates the increase
in the strength of evil to the fact that the holiness of shabbos begins
about that time.  (His explanation also does not take into account the
fact that the hour of Mars occurs not just at the beginning of shabbos
but 24 times a week, including three more times on shabbos itself, but
that in itself would not be a conclusive refutation because one could
argue that it's only *that* hour of Mars in which kiddush shouldn't be
said, for the reason Paul gave, and if not for this reason we wouldn't
refrain from saying kiddush just because of Mars; this would also have
explained why we don't refrain from saying Yomtov kiddush from 7-8 on
Sunday nights, from 8-9 on Tueesday nights, and from 5-6 on Wednesday
nights, and for that matter why we don't refrain from saying the daytime
kiddush from 3-4 on Saturday afternoons.  IMHO the true reason for this
is simply that it's not easy for people to keep track of, so the custom
never developed, and `since it's become ignored, it may be ignored, and
Hashem guards the simple' (Shabbat 156a).

Zev Sero                              Harmless Historical Nut

>         When I was a youngster I do not remember anybody besides
> Chassidic Rebus and extremely serious Chassidic Jews observing this
> custom. (My father O"BM did not practice this Minhag.) It has become
> more popular in recent years.

As far as I know, in Lubavitch it's always been the custom.


From: Chaim Mateh <chaimm@...>
Date: Wed, 23 Jun 1999 00:18:20 +0300
Subject: Re: Hair Covering

Moshe Feldman <moshe_feldman@...> wrote:
<< I explain the Arukh HaShulchan as follows: (1) Women are required to
cover their hair based on the pasuk "u'fara et rosh ha-isha" which is
explained in Ketubot 72a to mean that there is a prohibition ("azhara") for
them to go without hair covering.>>

The Aruch Hashulchan, Even Hoezer 21:4, says explicitely that it is
Biblically forbidden (assur min haTorah) for a woman to go in public
with uncovered hair.

Mishne Brura, 75:2:10 also says it's a Biblical Law.

Other sources that speak of the prohibition (I haven't checked whether
they say explicitely that it's a Biblical Law, but most of them rely on
the verse Moshe Feldman mentioned, so it's presumed that they hold it's
 Rambam, Issurei Bia, 21:17
Shulchan Aruch, Even Hoezer, 21:2 and 115:4
Shulchan Aruch Harav,  Orech Chaim 75:4
Kitzur Shulchan Aruch, 5:16

Kol Tuv,


From: Menashe Elyashiv <elyashm@...>
Date: Wed, 23 Jun 1999 08:54:36 +0300 (IDT)
Subject: Kaddish, Shema

Gershon & Ezriel brought up the minhag of standing for Kaddish.
The Sephardi minhag is to sit for Kaddish unless it "caught" you standing,
e.g. - after Hallel, Birkat Kohanim, the Mon. & Thurs. Tahanun, Shemona
Esrei of Arvit etc. One exception is the Kaddish before Barhu on Shabbat
Arvit - for Kabbalic reason we stand.
Shema - the Rambam writes that Shema should be read 1/10 of an hour before
sunrise, i.e. 6 minutes. In our Vattikin minyan our times are (weekdays)
Yishtabah - 11 min. before sunrise
   Shema  -  6 "     "       "
Veyasiv   - 2 1/2 "   "      "
Shema is read slow & correct! 
Shomana Esrei - we wait 7 minutes before starting Hazara (no Rabbi

On Shabbat & Hag - Nishmat is 18 or 20 min. before sunrise.


From: Stuart Wise <swise@...>
Date: Tue, 22 Jun 1999 11:10:10 -0700
Subject: Re: Male / Female Names

My guess is that your sister was given Elisha, for in it is a female
English name. alternately spelled Alicia.  It is interesting to hear
other stories of this type.

But it does make one wonder why in Hebrew, where there are specific
feminine and masculine words, why names like Yonah and Simchah are
unisex, and accepted whenever they are given.

This leads me to another issue of names that are changed to accommodate
the gender of a child.  My Hebrew name is Yisroel, and I was named after
my grandmother, whose name was Sarah, A"H.  My father, A"H, figured that
the root for both names, SAR, were the same, and thus I was named.  But
I now there is debate over this practice, and the practice of combining
names of two people to give to one child, or to give only a full name so
that the child would somehow be bestowed with the middos tovos of that

Stuart Wise

From: Ronald Greenberg <rig@...>
Date: Tue, 22 Jun 1999 14:01:26 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Names: Lisa, Rivka, Hudes, etc.

I'm surprised that none of the discussions of names have cited any of
the books by Kolatch.  I can't vouch for authoritativeness, but this
does seem to be the most comprehensive English source generally
available in the Jewish bookstores.  Here is the gist of its listings
 Alfred J. Kolatch.  The New Name Dictionary.  Jonathan David
Publishers, Inc., 1994.
 regarding some of the names that have been discussed:

 + Lisa:  A pet form of Elizabeth
 + Elizabeth (Elisheva):  From the Hebrew, meaning "God's oath".
 + Elisheva:  From the Hebrew, meaning "God is my oath".

 + Rivka, Rivkah: From the Hebrew, meaning "to bind".  Rebecca is the
Anglicized form.
 + Rebecca: From the Hebrew, meaning "to tie, bind".  Fattened animals
were tied before being slaughtered, hence the secondary meaning of
"voluptuous, beautiful, desirable".

 + Hude, Hudes: Yiddish forms of Hadasah.  Also used as nicknames for
 + Hadasa, Hadassa, Hadassah: From the Hebrew, meaning "myrtle tree",
a symbol of victory.
 + Yehudit:  From the Hebrew, meaning "praise".

I think I asked on this list before if anybody could point to early
uses of the name Vered (rose in modern Hebrew) or point to a scholarly
analysis of the apparent disagreement among commentators as to whether
Shoshanah means rose or lily (or perhaps it is rose in some places and
lily in others).  I still haven't been enlightened much.

Ron Greenberg <rig@...> (father of Rivka Vered and siblings)


From: Perry Zamek <jerusalem@...>
Date: Wed, 23 Jun 1999 10:50:39 +0300
Subject: Re: Number of verses in the 10 Commandments

Alexander Heppenheimer, in MJv28n89, wrote:
>there are three: one that divides them into 13 pesukim, as found in our
>standard Chumashim, and which we follow in private reading; another,
>which divides them into 9 pesukim (combining the first two
>Commandments), which is the standard one used in public Torah reading;

Prof. Breuer, in an article analyzing the Ta'am Elyon (the
cantillation/trop used for the Aseret Hadibrot in public reading),
suggests that the version used in most places for the first two dibrot
is wrong, and he suggests an alternative that splits these two dibrot
into two verses: 1) Anochi... 2) Lo yihyeh...

The trop he suggest for Anochi is what is usually printed as the Ta'am

I don't remember the exact basis for his determination. Interestingly,
in a similar article by two scholars at JTS, the same conclusion is
reached, through a totally different approach.

Also, in some copies of the Koren Chumash, where the Ta'am Elyon is
printed separately after the chumash text, there is a footnote saying
that Rav Wolf Heidenheim (if I understand the rashei teivot correctly)
would read the first dibur in the ta'am tachton -- making him read
exactly the same way as Prof. Breuer suggests.

Perry Zamek   | A Jew should live his life in such a way
Peretz ben    | that people can say of him: "There goes
Avraham       | a living Kiddush Hashem".


From: Eliyahu Teitz <EDTeitz@...>
Date: Mon, 21 Jun 1999 20:35:47 EDT
Subject: Re: shape of luchos

<<  The seats were rounded to remind one of the aseret ha-dibrot tablet above 
the aron. >>

The g'mara, howver, notes that the shape of the tablets was actually a
rectangular prism (a 3-dimensional rectangle).  The top of the luchos
was actually flat.



From: David Glasner <DGLASNER@...>
Date: Tue, 22 Jun 1999 13:01:04 -0400
Subject: Re: The Pharisees

Eli Clark wrote:

<<< the attempt to impose an exclusively sociological analysis upon the
Talmudic literature (e.g., L. Ginsberg's The Pharisees) inevitably
results in oversimplification, reductionism and failure.  >>>

I think you meant to cite the other JTS Louis, L. Finkelstein.

David Glasner


From: Russell Hendel <rhendel@...>
Date: Tue, 22 Jun 1999 07:57:06 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: RE: The Shva NAX in SHTAYIM

Just a short answer to Peretz Mett who in v28n79 asks HOW the shva in
SHTAYIM could be NAX--it is not possible to pronounce a shva nax at the
beginning of the word.

We do not legally hold this position in Ashkenazic communities today.But
those who do hold it actually pronounce the word ESHTAYIM with an extra
ALEPH.  The ESHTAYIM pronounciation would explain why the TAV has a
Dagesh.  This alternate form of pronunciation is brought down by both
Ibn Ezra and Radack.

Russell Hendel;Phd ASA;Moderator Rashi Is Simple;http://www.shamash.org/rashi


From: Dov Teichman <DTnLA@...>
Date: Tue, 22 Jun 1999 22:28:13 EDT
Subject: Vaykhulu on Friday Night

I have seen in the "Devar Yom Beyomo" which is a booklet of halachos and
minhagim (particularly for Belzer Chassidim) that says that one may say
Vayechulu with the congregation after one has said the Yihyu LeRatzon
before Elokai Netzor even before one has taken the 3 steps back. No
source is quoted for this though.

Dov Teichman


From: Gitelle Rapoport <giteller@...>
Date: Mon, 21 Jun 1999 15:18:02 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Re: Women and Mitzvot

Re two points by David I. Cohen:

Please remember that the women's bracha, "she'asani kir'tzono" was not
written at the same time as the men's "shelo asani ishah." The latter is
in the gemara, of course, while the former isn't recorded until
something like the 14th century, if I recall correctly. So any
explanation comparing the two must take into account the fact that they
were not parallel historical developments.

On niddah observance: It isn't a time-bound positive mitzvah in the
precise sense that lulav, sukkah and shofar are. In fact, it is
essentially a negative mitzvah (no sex during and for a certain time
after menstruation and before expected menstruation, with many other
additional rabbinic details). In fact, I once heard Rabbi Michael Broyde
make the point that mikvah attendance by women is not a "mitzvah" at
all. It is rather a "matir" -- i.e., a prerequisite activity to
permissible marital relations after the woman's menstruation.

Gitelle Rapoport 


From: Zvi Weiss <weissz@...>
Date: Tue, 22 Jun 1999 08:59:50 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Re: Yom Tov Sheni

If anyone wants to note it, the Netziv discusses the rationale for "Yom
Tove Sheni" in his commentary in Parshas Emor right at the beginning of
the Section dealing with Holidays.  I believe that he relates thsi to the
concept of "Mishmeres" and also states why this did NOT apply to Yom



End of Volume 28 Issue 92