Volume 30 Number 66
                 Produced: Tue Jan  4 17:07:06 US/Eastern 2000

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Adnei Hasadeh
Airline meals
         [David Charlap]
Are we losing the essence of Shabbos? (2)
         [Stan Tenen, A.J.Gilboa]
Community Support of Rabbis
         [Carl Singer]
Giving Non-jewish wine as a gift
         [Daniel Stuhlman]
Holy Writings on Microfiche
         [Joseph Geretz]
Kissing one's Tzitzis while reciting last paragraph of Sh'ma
         [Akiva Miller]
Maoz Tsur
         [Eliezer Finkelman]
Mi Sheberach for Cholim
         [Joseph Geretz]
Oral vs Quiet Prayer
         [Yossie Abramson]
Philathropy & Fraud
Tithe (2)
         [Michael Berkovits, Susan Chambre]
Who counts for a minyan?
         [Mark Steiner]


From: Fred <fredd@...>
Date: Sun, 2 Jan 2000 08:21:39 -0800
Subject: Adnei Hasadeh

According to The Ari Z"l, Adnei Hasadeh was used as an example of the
"bridge" between vegetation and animal. His interpretation is that it is
and animal which is stuck to the ground, and that it would die if it's
attachment to the ground were cut. He does not indicate whether it still
exists or not. His opinion is that there *must be* bridges between each
level. He also used the example of coral as the bridge between "domem"
(inert) and living, and monkey between animal and man.

At the moment I can't cite the exact location of his comments, but will
look it up, if anyone insists.

Rabbi Fred (Yeshuah) E. Dweck


From: David Charlap <shamino@...>
Date: Sun, 02 Jan 2000 17:45:58 +0000
Subject: Re: Airline meals

Rachel Mestetsky wrote:

> Last time I was on a plane, I had a kosher meal served to
> me.  The man sitting next to me asked how I received such a
> meal, and I told him.  He wanted to know if non-Jews could
> request a kosher meal, since his ham and cheese sandwich
> now I'm thinking, did I do the right thing?  Should a
> non-Jew be requesting a kosher meal?  Is that a form of
> false advertising?

I don't see it as a problem.

The airlines have a rather extensive alternate menu.  They have
vegetarian meals, chalal (Islamic version of "kosher"), and other
special-diet meals.  I think a travel agent can actually show you all
the kinds of meals that are available on a given airline flight.

As far as the airline is concerned, kosher is just another kind of
special-diet meal.  For them, all meals are just boxed containers that
they load prior to takeoff.  They really don't care if the containers
come from carton A or carton B.

-- David


From: Stan Tenen <meru1@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 1999 15:58:01 -0500
Subject: Re: Are we losing the essence of Shabbos?

Aviva Fee makes a good point.  In our effort to do everything right, we
spend an awful lot of time, and that doesn't leave time to do the most
important thing we can do on Shabbos -- be quiet.

The essence of Shabbos is inner reflection.  We can see this from the 
letters, Shin-Bet-Tof.  Shin-Bet is a root related to the idea of 
"sitting", and the suffix Tof tells us that the preceding letters/word are 
to be taken reflexively.  In other words, Shabbos essentially, literally, 
means "to sit within ourselves."  In the case of the week, Shabbos is the 
still center (still of work) in the midst of the 6 days of 
effort.  Spiritually, Shabbos comes close to one meaning of the word, 
"meditation."  When we do everything else, but don't leave time for our 
minds to quiet so that we can hear Hashem a bit better, then we're really 
not honoring what's most important in Shabbos, IMO.

Good Shabbos,
Meru Foundation   http://www.meru.org   <meru1@...>

From: A.J.Gilboa <bfgilboa@...>
Date: Sun, 02 Jan 2000 12:58:35 -0800
Subject: Re: Are we losing the essence of Shabbos?

Well, you might conclude that, for the sake of a more appropriate
Shabbat atmosphere, you should move to a community that is not so
monolithically frum. The intensity of the hectic Shabbat activity that
you mention is probably exponentially related to the number of frum
families in the community. A 50/50 mix could do wonders for you.

Another, perhaps more realistic, tack would be to bring this up for
public discussion, or to confer with your local Rav. Do I detect a sense
of conspicuous consumption here? Or "doing as the Joneses"? Granted that
all of the activities you mention are important mitzvot but it is also a
mitzva to rest, physically and spiritually, on Shabbat. So the community
and its leaders might encourage some sort of framework to make room for
ALL of these mitzvot.

Yosef Gilboa

P.S. Can't the "work" be shared more equitably? Can't older children be
given the responsibilty for getting younger siblings and neighbors to
and from their Shabbat activities? ... helping with the preparations for
Shabbat and cleaning up on motza"sh? Not only will this relieve the
stress and busyness that you feel but it will also be of great
educational value to the children.


From: Carl Singer <CARLSINGER@...>
Date: Wed, 29 Dec 1999 11:59:53 EST
Subject: Re: Community Support of Rabbis

It would be nice if all congregations could pay their Rabbi's full-time
professional salaries -- in the U.S. that would probably mean $100,000
or more.  Most can't so Rabbi's support their families with jobs as
teachers, counsellors, kosher supervisors, etc.  The problem then
becomes one of availablity.  Each of us wants timely access to OUR

When I was VP finance of our Shule a congregant came ranting to me that
the Rabbi didn't return his call immediately -- and he had a question of
taharas ha-mishpacha to deal with -- I imagine a shule Rabbi spends much
time dealing with bedikah cloths.  The real point being that we want
full time service from part time Rabbis.

Although our society apparently values Torah learning and Torah teaching
-- the sad fact of the matter is that a Rabbi who chooses to teach in a
Talmud Torah has opted for a life of marginal income -- one Rebbe I know
told me that his sister, with 6 months of computer training was earning
multiples of his salary.  To pay my children's Rebbe's what they
deserve, tuition would have to double, at least.  And this applies for
secular teachers (in Yeshivas) also.  There was a time when my wife,
with a Master's degree (from a real college) and over 10 years of
experience (at that time) was earning less than my secretary.

Carl Singer


From: Daniel Stuhlman <ssmlhtc@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 1999 11:50:39
Subject: Re: Giving Non-jewish wine as a gift

>I recieved an expensive bottle of non-jewish wine as a christmas gift
>from a client.  Is there a problem with giving the bottle to a gentile
>as a gift?  I'm more interested in the the possible issur of gaining
>hana'a from the wine, rather than the giving a christmas gift aspect.
>David Zilberberg

Several questions arise: What is your company's policy for receiving
gifts?  When I worked for a governement agency we were not allowed
personal gifts except for advertising related materials such as cups
with the vendor's logo.  If food was given, it was considered for
everyone in the department.  The same goes here when a vendor gives us a
gift of food.  (If the food is not kosher it would not be brought in.)
If the food is something I can eat I will take some, else others could
enjoy my portion.

You could accept graciously and never in your mind accept the gift for
yourself.  I.e.  You could just be the transfer agent to a non-Jew.  You
could just put it in the dumpster when no one is looking or donate it to
a local agency for non-Jews.

Kol tuv.

Daniel Stuhlman
Chicago, IL 60645
<mail to:<ddstuhlman@...>


From: Joseph Geretz <jgeretz@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 1999 12:59:22 -0500
Subject: Holy Writings on Microfiche

I recently saw in a local Judaica store, the entire Sefer Raziel
HaMalach on a small microfiche card.  To my knowledge, Halacha only
deals with that which is visible to the naked eye. Two examples:

When drinking water (maybe from a stream, if not from tap water), we are
ingesting at the same time thousands of tiny one-celled animals, which
are of absolutely no consequence Halachically, since they are not
visible to the naked eye.

Similarly, I've always been told that when examining a letter in the
Torah for cracks or attachments to another letter, a magnifying glass
should NOT be used since the psak should be according to what the naked
eye sees.

So now I'm wondering about this Sefer Raziel HaMalach on microfiche, and
on holy writings in general, on microfiche. Would G-d's name, written in
a size smaller than is visible to the naked eye, have all of the
sanctity normally associated with the written name of G-d? Can such
microfiche be brought into an unclean place?

Does a Sefer Raziel HaMalach on microfich afford the same protection as
a Sefer written in a fasion which is readable to the naked eye? Maybe
there are Choshen Mishpat implications here, because if not, then it's
fraud to sell this item, since Halachically (and therefore
Kabballistically) a Sefer Raziel HaMalach on microfiche, doesn't have
the status, or provide the protection, of a readable Sefer Raziel

Kol Tuv, Gut Shabbos,

Joseph Geretz
Focal Point Solutions, Inc.


From: Akiva Miller <kennethgmiller@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 1999 13:34:13 EST
Subject: Re: Kissing one's Tzitzis while reciting last paragraph of Sh'ma

For several years, I used to kiss my tzitzis during the Sh'ma, but I
could never understand the words:

"v'nasnu al tzitzis -- hakanaf p'sil t'cheiles" = "they will place upon
the tassel -- the corner is a blue thread"

But then, one day at maariv I tried reading the Sh'ma with the proper
trop notes, and suddenly the meaning of the words became clear:

"v'nasnu al tzitzis hakanaf, p'sil t'cheiles" = "they will place a blue
thread upon the corner's tassel"

I don't kiss the tzitzis during the Sh'ma anymore. I think it's a bigger
mitzva to get the words right.


From: Eliezer Finkelman <Finkelmans@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 1999 14:03:05 EST
Subject: Re: Maoz Tsur

The current issue of Amit (Winter 2000/Horef 5760) has an article about
the music for Maoz Tsur, called "Hanukkah's Top Hit," by L. Leon-Cohen.
Those subscribers who followed the recent discussion of the standard
Ashkenazic melody of Maoz Tsur in Mail-Jewish would enjoy this article.

Eliezer Finkelman


From: Joseph Geretz <jgeretz@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 1999 13:15:08 -0500
Subject: Mi Sheberach for Cholim

I'd just like to add my two cents to Carl M. Sherer's remarks regarding
Mi Shebeirachs. Carl posted quite eloquently in MJ Vol. 30 #55, and I
don't feel there's too much to add, but perhaps the following suggestion
might be worthwhile.

Perhaps, during the time that the Mi SheBeirach's are being said for
Cholim, those of us who are fortunate, thank G-d, not to have to
participate, should be quietly concentrating on a personal Tefilla
thanking G-d for his kindness to us. It strikes me that as the Mi
Shebeirach activity unfortunately increases, our realization of how
blessed we are personally, should increase as well, and our Tefilla and
Hoda'a should increase as well, both in terms of concentration and
duration. So there should be no need for anyone to feel that their time
is somehow being wasted. Perhaps, our Tefillos of thanks would add merit
to the Tefillos of request on behalf of the Cholim and we would merit to
see a diminishment in the number of Mi SheBeirach's for Choilm.

Kol Tuv,

Joseph Geretz
Focal Point Solutions, Inc.


From: Yossie Abramson <yossie@...>
Date: Sun, 2 Jan 2000 15:53:37 -0500
Subject: Re: Oral vs Quiet Prayer

> From: Yisrael Medad <yisraelm@...>
> a)  is it/why is it permitted to say the verse "Hashem open my lips" 
> when  one is supposed to put the Geula Blessing together with the
> Amidah without interruption?

I heard that the reason that we are allowed to say that pasuk is that
the Chazal said that, (if we are having the proper kavanah) by the
Amidah we are talking to Hashem. How can a mere mortal actually do that
without getting all flustered? The Chazal allowed an insertion before
the Amidah as a quick prayer to allow our lips to speak and to pray
properly to Hashem.



From: Anonymous
Date: Sun, 2 Jan 2000 14:17:29 EST
Subject: Philathropy & Fraud

As a member of the board of a well-known Yeshiva Gedolah, I know for a
fact that we have turned down donations (in multiple $10Ks) from sources
that we felt were tainted.  The message from the Rosh Yeshiva was quite
clear and there was no second guessing.



From: Michael Berkovits <michaelberkovits@...>
Date: Sun, 02 Jan 2000 08:44:56 EST
Subject: Tithe

Regarding anonymous's request for info on giving tzedokah particularly
maaser (tithe) there is a very good web site that discusses tzedokah
issues and has lots of halachic references: it is

There is also a book called 'maaser kesafim' that is a very good guide
to giving.


p.s. if anyone is interested in starting a mail list or forum dedicated to 
issues of giving tzedokah pls contact me!

From: Susan Chambre <Smchambre@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 1999 12:50:42 EST
Subject: Tithe

For a good discussing of this issue, see Cyril Domb, Maaser Kesavim (in 
English). Can be gotten through Amazon. 


From: Mark Steiner <marksa@...>
Date: Sun, 02 Jan 2000 17:39:35 +0200
Subject: Re: Who counts for a minyan?

Here is a short answer (more anecdotal than halakhic) to the question of
whether a Jew who does not believe in Hashem can count for a minyan.

A number of years ago, one of my colleagues (Hebrew University) called
me.  He is notorious here as an enemy of the Jewish religion, certainly
of rabbis.  He and his wife had just undergone a horrible
experience--their car had tumbled into a ravine off the Jerusalem-Tel
Aviv highway, and had been completely destroyed (totaled).  The two of
them walked away unscathed.

My colleague asked ME to go to shul and recite a birkas hagomel, as HE
is an atheist....

Mark Steiner


End of Volume 30 Issue 66