Volume 28 Number 98
                 Produced: Wed Jul  7  5:58:45 US/Eastern 1999

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

"Larger than Life" (re Lubavitcher Rebbe)
         [Freda B Birnbaum]
         [Zvi Weiss]
Halichos Shadchanus and Halichos Shmiras Lashon
         [Tzvi Harris]
Kosher Food for Remote Travel
         [Ian Elliott]
Metaphors found in Tanach for Hashem
         [Yehoshua Berkowitz]
More on time bound mitzvot
         [David I. Cohen]
Pronunciation - Extra Yod
         [Chaim Wasserman]
Pronunciation of Tal
         [Ari Kahn]
Should working women do Positive Time Bound Commandments
         [Russell Hendel]
Windows in Shul
         [Larry Rabinovich]
Women and PTBM
         [Jay Rovner]


From: Freda B Birnbaum <fbb6@...>
Subject: "Larger than Life" (re Lubavitcher Rebbe)

Sorry this is late, I'm backlogged on reading...

Evidently there was a big flap about these books in some circles, which
may explain why you had a hard time finding them....

The copies I have say they were published by

Chasidic Historical Productions Ltd.
P.O. Box 250122
Brooklyn, NY 11225

Good luck!
(We got our copies from friends, so I can't help you re bookstores...
sorry!  You MIGHT try West Side Judaica in Manhattan.)

Freda Birnbaum


From: Zvi Weiss <weissz@...>
Date: Wed, 30 Jun 1999 10:48:23 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Re: Bil'am

Interestingly enoughm the Netziv notes that *briefly( Bil'am actaully
DID display "affection" toward B'nei Yisrael and that at that point, he
reached a higer level of Prophecy as the Divine Spirit came to him "with
 However, Bil'am's own anitpathy to the B'nei Yisrael (as evidenced by
his "advice" to Balak) triggered Bil'am's own doom.  Maybe that is why
the citation in Pirkei Avot focuses upon Bil'am's *character traits* as
being the "hallmarks" ...  It was due to those character traits that
Bil'am ultiamtely forfeited the level of prophecy achieved preferring to
seek to cause harm...



From: Tzvi Harris <ltharris@...>
Subject: Halichos Shadchanus and Halichos Shmiras Lashon

Rachel Furman wrote:
<I am doing research on Halichos Shadchanus and Halichos Shmiras Lashon
as they pertain to Shidduchim.  Can anyone on this list point me in the
direction of good sources?  (English translations would be most helpful,
but I can manage with Ivrit).>

Regarding shadchanut, there are a couple of chapters on this in the
sefer:  Hanisuin k'hilchatam, by R' Binyamin Adler.  There is also an
entire book of responsa on this specific issue, but I don't recall the
name.  If you ask in a bookstore they might be able to help you with

Tzvi Harris
Talmon, Israel


From: Ian Elliott <iane@...>
Date: Mon, 5 Jul 1999 17:07:00 +1000 (EST)
Subject: Kosher Food for Remote Travel

Dear Chaverim,

Can you please help me locate a source of Kosher food suitable for taking
on expeditions to remote locations where Kosher food is not available?

I buy tribal arts and crafts and wholesale them (www.niugini-arts.com).
This necessitates travel to remote places and countries where kosher food
is not available - South Pacific countries, parts of East Asia and
particularly remote tribal areas of Papua New Guinea and Indonesia (Irian
Jaya).   Currently I am forced to take my food with me.   The outdoors
shops have a range of freeze dried foods manufactured in Australia, New
Zealand and the USA which are most suitable - nice (relatively),
nourishing, packaged in meal sizes and very light to carry.  However I
have not been able to find a Kosher source of such foods.

I also believe there could be a market amongst travellers, hikers and
others for such foods if it was available.

Can someone please help me find a kosher source of such food?

Yours sincerely,

Ian Elliott / Yosef Shlomo


From: Yehoshua Berkowitz <RYehoshua@...>
Date: Mon, 5 Jul 1999 13:53:59 EDT
Subject: Metaphors found in Tanach for Hashem

I am writing an article that deals with the issue of the different metaphors 
found in Tanach for Hashem.  For example, Hashem as a warrior (Hashem ish 
milchamot);  and G-d as a Lover (ani ledodi v'dodi li).    I would appreciate 
any suggestions and additions.  Those wishing to respond directly can e-mail 
me at <RYehoshua@...>   Thank you one and all.

Rabbi Yehoshua Berkowitz


From: David I. Cohen <BDCOHEN613@...>
Date: Wed, 30 Jun 1999 08:55:39 EDT
Subject: More on time bound mitzvot

I do agree with Gitelle Rapoport (vol.28 #92) that the bracha "sheasani
kirtzono" appears later than the male version. Two interesting points:
The fact that there was a need to create a blessing for women to say
shows a recognition that women's obligation to pray took on a more
standardized text within the halachic development; 2) The bracha, no
matter when it became accepted as a standard in prayer, does use the
terminology which notes that women are closer to the "will" (ratzon) of
the Creator.
  Of course, I did not mean to imply that niddah is a classical "time
bound positive commandment". Nevertheless, this halachah which is
intrinsically connected to time, especially biologically, and is,
therefore, a paradigm of sanctifying time, is specifically performed by
women. In fact the halacha recognized the unique role women play in
hilchot niddah, by the fact that much is based on "b'not yisrael gazru
alayhen", that the daughters of Israel took certain stringencies upon
themselves, not simply a regular "gezeirah d'rabban", a rabbinical
decree. Whether we classify niddah as "mitzvah" or "matir" doesn't
(IMHO) detract from the possible hashkafic implications
 David I. Cohen


From: Chaim Wasserman <Chaimwass@...>
Date: Mon, 5 Jul 1999 11:29:34 EDT
Subject: Re: Pronunciation - Extra Yod

Peretz Mett began his informative message with the words " The journal
Mevakshei Toiro" which for me presents a facsinating problem. It there a
"yod" (or "yud") in that word Torira? For, indeed, eastern European
pronunciation would acknowledge that this is the correct pronunciation -
as if there were a yod in the word.

But, if that is the case what does one do with the word "goy" as in
"shelo osani goy." That word has a yod following the cholam to be
certain that it is pronounced as "goy".

How, then, can one justify a pronunciuation of Toirah, Oilom, Goirol,
Halochois, Dibrois, Moishe, Eloikim, Adoi-noi (that would have to be
spelled aleph / dalet / yod for the oi sound / nun / and yod) where
there is no yod in any of these words at the cholam. What is the
halochoh when one adds a letter to a word during the reading of the

chaim wasserman


From: Ari Kahn <kahnar@...>
Date: Wed, 23 Jun 1999 18:35:16 +0300
Subject: Re: Pronunciation of Tal

I too noticed this problem, and have written an essay which deals with
it from a philosophical perspective. It was published in Alie Etzion
Nisan 5759. An earlier version may be found on the web:
http://www.aish.edu/parsha/kahn/ in a shiur entitled "Pesach 2" or at
http://www.aish.edu/parsha/kahn/58/pesach258.htm CHOL HAMOED PESSACH:

A couple points not brought up in the article. The Karlin siddur Beis
Aharon actually has Tal with a patach, which is clearly more
consistent. However my Karlin sources also tell me that they have a
custom of skipping the line when praying in a cemetery, because of
"loeg larash". This custom would be understood if one accepts my
thesis in the article.

In the article I associated the tal with the previous phrase: "bringing
back the dead" and theorized that the term is referring to the idea of
resurrection and not classical dew. The point of the article was trying
to explain the custom of reading the Haftorah which deals with
resurrection specifically on Chol Hamoed Pesach. The Talmud, Midrash and
Zohar almost always connect resurrection with Tal..

Dew - tal will be used in the future by the Holy One Blessed be He to
bring about Resurrection" (Chagiga 12b)

"After each of the 10 Commandments (the people died when G-d spoke) so
(G-d) brought dew on them which will be used in the future to resurrect
man, and they came back to life" (Shabbat 88b)

"How do we know that Resurrection will only take place via dew?
(Yerushalmi Brachot 5:2)

"The dead (bones) which Yechezkel brought back to life-- dew from heaven
descended upon them." (Pirkei d Rebbi Eliezer chapter33)

"Dew is a symbol of resurrection" (Tanchuma Toldot section 19)

 By means of that dew all will rise from the dust, as it says, "for thy
dew is as the dew of lights" (Is. XXVI, 19), these being the supernal
lights through which the Almighty will in future pour forth life upon
the world. (Zohar, Bereshith, 130b)

Said R. Hiya: And what is more, from the words, "Thy dead ones will
live" (Isa. XXVI, 19), it is evident that not only will there be a new
creation, but that the very bodies which were dead will rise, for one
bone in the body remains intact, not decaying in the earth, and on the
Resurrection Day the Holy One will soften it and make it like leaven in
dough, and it will rise and expand on all sides, and the whole body and
all its members will be formed from it, and then the Holy One will put
spirit into it. Said R. Eleazar: Assuredly so. And the bone will be
softened the dew, as it says: "Thy dead ones shall live... for thy dew
is the dew of plants" (Ibid.). (Zohar, Shemoth, 28b)

Ari Kahn


From: Russell Hendel <rhendel@...>
Date: Sun, 27 Jun 1999 16:16:40 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Should working women do Positive Time Bound Commandments

I recently cited Rav Hirschs theory of which commandments women are
exempt from: They are exempt from periodically recurring symbolic
commandments whose purpose is to (symbolically) strengthen one against
forces in the outside world which threaten to lead him astray (the idea
being that women are not as involved in the outside world and don't need
these reminders).

Wendy Baker and Gitelle Rapoport asked (v28n86) "But what about today when
many women are in the workforce?" I actually had a similar conversation
with Rivkah Slonim who told me that she didn't prefer Rav Hirschs theory
precisely because it is not relevant today with so many women in the
workforce (Wendy's and Gitelle's question).

However after thinking about it for a while I realized that if we accept
Rav Hirsch's observations as accurately descriptive of those
commandments that women are exempt from then indeed, we would encourage
women who work in the workforth to e.g. go out of their way to these
commandments which she is only optionally obligated to perform. As a
simple example a primary reason for Tzitzith is to prevent sexual
temptation (Nu 15:39). But if a woman is in the workplace and exposed to
these sexual temptations then she needs these reminders also--hence she
should wear them.

Another point: Michah Berger pointed out my omitting explaining why this
applies to PERIODICALLY RECURRING commandments. The answer is because
these commandments are only SYMBOLIC strengtheners against outside
influences --they are not actual acts (such as eg charity) that we do to
prevent evil.  But then its the nature of symbolic acts that they are
done periodically.

A final point: Josh Hoffman(v28n88) says "Look at all this
confusion--why not go back and say that women are exempt from positive
time bound commandments by Divine decree"--the answer is (As Rav Hirsch
points out) that there are too many exceptions to the rule (A Divine
decree couldn't have so many exceptions---rather, as I indicated, it is
an attempt by Chazal to formulate a unified hypothesis (similar to their
attempt to formulate a unified hypothesis to which birds are Kosher).

Russell Jay Hendel; Phd ASA: <rhendel@...>
Moderator Rashi Is Simple; http://www.shamash.org/rashi/


From: Larry Rabinovich <lrabinovich@...>
Date: Thu, 24 Jun 1999 11:01:57 -0400
Subject: RE: Windows in Shul

Yisrael Medad is correct that many rishonim discuss the requirement, set
out in berakhot 31a and 34b, that one daven in a house (shul?) with
windows. It certainly is mentioned in the Yad, hilkhot tefila 5:6. In a
teshuva however (Blau, no. 216), the Rambam held that this requirement
applies only to a house and not a shul.

The custom of having twelve windows, though, to the best of my knowledge
(and feel free to educate me) is not mentioned by the rishonim. Its
first halakhic appearance is in the Bet Yosef to the Tur O.H. section
90. R Yosef Caro himself cites the Zohar as the source for the law. The
late Jacob Katz utilized this example in his book "Halakha ve-Kabbala"
as an early example of the halakha being impacted upon by kabbalistic
theory and practice.
    Larry Rabinovich
    New York


From: Jay Rovner <jarovner@...>
Date: Wed, 30 Jun 1999 11:16:14 +0000
Subject: Women and PTBM

my opinion is that in view of the sociological changes that the
westernized world is undergoing, we would do well to encourage women to
engage in halakhically permissible observances. (This includes matters
of "reshut" which could be totally new creations.) in matters of
positive mitsvot, the rule that because the many have prohibited to
themselves what had once been permitted should no be extended to cover a
different society than that in which the prohibition is rooted.
	anyway, yeshivas obligate girls to prayer and, if i remember
accurately the context of a lecture on Talmud Torah, both rav
soloveitchik and the recent lubavitcher rebbe endorsed it, and sarah
shneur had already pioneered it in the first part of this century,
beginning with the support of the gerer rebbe. in addition, the practice
in israel of training women to be toaniyot (legal advisers) in the
rabbinic court system, endorses both their learning of torah, and their
shifting into a more public forum in contemporary rabbinic culture for
	jay rovner	


End of Volume 28 Issue 98