Volume 32 Number 54
                 Produced: Wed Jun 14  6:24:37 US/Eastern 2000

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Adnei Hasadeh
         [Eli Lansey]
Buying Slaves (2)
         [Robert A. Book, Mark Steiner]
Halakhically Legitimate Heterim --- Why Not?
         [Fred Dweck]
Key on Shabbos (2)
         [Carl Singer, Alan Strauss]
Kosher Sports Drink - Thirst Quencher
         [David Neuman]
Kosher vs. M'hadrin (2)
         [Batya Medad, Danny Skaist]
         [Eric Jaron Stieglitz]
Pre-Chuppah Wedding Pictures
         [Jay Kaplowitz]
Selling Chomets
         [Robert A. Book]
Shir shel yom


From: Eli Lansey <elansey@...>
Date: Mon, 12 Jun 2000 16:02:07 -0400
Subject: Adnei Hasadeh

I have recently come across an article on the web discussing the adnei
hasadeh.  It can be retrieved at www.ohrnet.org/judaism/nature .



From: Robert A. Book <rbook@...>
Date: Tue, 13 Jun 2000 18:18:32 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Re: Buying Slaves

Asher Friedman <asher36@...> writes:
> I was wondering what is the halacha regarding buying slaves these
> days. Can you "buy" a non-jew than free him/her and they would
> automatically be converted? How about a mamzer, would he be able to
> "buy" a non jewish woman to marry her?

I thoguht this sounded familiar, so I looked it up in the Mail-Jewish
index ( http://www.ottmall.com/mj_ht_arch/ ).

[Just a quick note, you can easily find the link to the search index at
http://mail-jewish.org. The actual search engine and web friendly pages
are located at the above URL as Robert says. Mod.]

The above questions were both asked in Mail-Jewish Vol. 18.  The first
question (conversion-through-slavery) was asked, and our moderator
immediately responded by raising the second (mamzer marrying a
non-Jewish female slave to produce Jewish non-mamzer children).  There
was a fair bit of discussion (no conclusion, of course!)  about the
second issue, and mentioned again in MJ Vol. 30, but I didn't find any
followup for the first question.

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

From: Mark Steiner <marksa@...>
Date: Tue, 13 Jun 2000 21:53:49 +0300
Subject: Re:Buying Slaves

> I was wondering what is the halacha regarding buying slaves these
> days. Can you "buy" a non-jew than free him/her and they would
> automatically be converted?

Your idea is was adopted by R. Moshe Feinstein, z"l, in the case of
babies adopted by Jewish parents.  Gentile babies who are converted at
birth can opt out of Judaism when they reach adulthood.  Your idea
prevents this.  You should consult the Igros Moshe to see whether there
were any restrictions in using this idea.


From: Fred Dweck <fredd@...>
Date: Tue, 13 Jun 2000 08:25:56 -0700
Subject: Re: Halakhically Legitimate Heterim --- Why Not?

In M-J 32 #51 An anonymous poster asks ...
>  The same God who told us what foods are prohibited is
>  also the God who gave us various heterim --- bateil,
>  notein ta`am lifgam, sfeik sfeika, etc. --- under which
>  we don't have to worry about these issurim. So if we're
>  going to abide by His rules, we should be willing to
>  accept ALL of the ones that He gave us. In fact, it
>  seems to me that REFUSAL to use the heterim He gave us
>  is awfully xutzpadik --- it is basically telling Hashem
>  that His rules are not good enough for us, and we know
>  better than He does what is REALLY the right way to
>  conduct ourselves.

Baruch Hashem that there is at least one other clear thinker on this
list. I have written about this subject before, regarding second
guessing Hashem. Shame that the poster [felt the need] to remain
anonymous, but I do understand, given the vehement machmir positions of
some posters.

I invite him to make himself known to the list, or at least to me,
privately. There is NO shame in the position he holds, and he should be
proud of it. I'm sure that Hashem agrees with him, totally.

However, as for his statement:

>  For example, if I have a piece of meat that has a 75%
>  chance of being kosher and a 25% chance of being treif,
>  I am allowed to eat it because of bateil b"rov --- and
>  hence it poses no spiritual danger to me even if the
>  physical reality is indeed that it's treif.

I believe that he is misquoting the halacha. The origin of this concept
comes from; if 2 pieces of kosher meat got mixed with one piece of
identical unkosher meat, and they cannot be told apart, it is "bateil
b"rov." Not if a piece of meat that has a 75% chance of being kosher and
a 25% chance of being treif.

Rabbi Fred (Yeshuah) E. Dweck


From: Carl Singer <CARLSINGER@...>
Date: Tue Jun 13 07:31:00 2000
Subject: Re: Key on Shabbos

 > Another "key" issue that I have not heard much about is the act of
 > putting the key in the door and letting it swing inward (the key in the
 > door that is).  What is happening there is the key is being transported
 > from r'shut harabim (public domain) to r'shut hayachid (private domain).
 > This might not be an issue in a private house with a front porch, but
 > what about in an apartment house.

Just curious -- are their communities that hold by this standard?  That is opening a door with a key in it is transporting the key from Reshush haRabim to Reshush haYachid.  I'm not even sure of the metziah, since doors tend to have overhangs, etc., but that's not the point of interest to me.

Carl Singer

From: Alan Strauss <Alan_Strauss@...>
Date: Tue, 13 Jun 2000 10:09:49 -0700
Subject: Re: Key on Shabbos

Andrew Klafter wrote

>> Another "key" issue that I have not heard much about is the act of
>> putting the key in the door and letting it swing inward (the key in the
>> door that is).  What is happening there is the key is being transported
>> from r'shut harabim (public domain) to r'shut hayachid (private domain).
>> This might not be an issue in a private house with a front porch, but>
>> what about in an apartment house.
>We are never allowed to carry in a reshus-ha-rabbim.  In communities
>with an eruv-enclosure allowing us to carry keys, the community has
>Thus, your question assumes that the outside of your front door is a
>reshus ha rabbim.  If it were, you would not have been allowed to carry
>the key home in the first place.  An eruv could not be established

I should have clarified by saying that the key in my case would have
been kept under a doormat or is a tie-clip key, and thus would not have
been carried in R"H.

Avromy Strauss


From: David Neuman <dav-el-svc@...>
Date: Tue, 13 Jun 2000 07:57:57 -0400
Subject: Kosher Sports Drink - Thirst Quencher

Does anyone have know any sports drink / thirst quencher that has
hasgocho?  And, if so, what are there names and who manufactuers them?

Dovid Neuman


From: Batya Medad <isrmedia@...>
Date: Tue, 13 Jun 2000 16:45:08 +0300
Subject: Re: Kosher vs. M'hadrin

> 7. On Pesach Badatz products do not have kitniyot, rabbanut hechsherim
> will say "Kosher l'ochlei kitniyot" (This is more an issue of consumer
> awareness)

Don't be so sure.  A few years ago visitors brought us a Badatz gift that
had kitniot, because there are now sephardi charidim.  Luckily I checked
everything first.
Batya Medad

From: Danny Skaist <danny@...>
Date: Tue, 13 Jun 2000 14:38:33 +0200
Subject: Re: Kosher vs. M'hadrin

<<RABBI: The hechsher is based on the famous heter of the Achiezer [Rabbi
Chaim Ozer Grodzinski]. >>

Is there anbody on this list who is willing (after 120 years) to look
Rav Chaim Ozer Grodzinski in the eye and tell him that they were too
observant to accept his heter ??



From: Eric Jaron Stieglitz <ephraim@...>
Date: Tue, 13 Jun 2000 17:30:38 -0400
Subject: Napster

David Charlap <shamino@...> wrote on mail-jewish:
  > [...]
  > You are assuming that everything distributed via Napster is pirated.
  > This is not the case.  There are many bands who use Napster to
  > distribute their own material, which is perfectly legal.
  > While it is true that the majority of Napster users are using it to
  > pirate music, I don't think it is fair to claim that there is no other
  > possible use for it.
  > [...]
  > I don't see their system as being any more illegal than a photocopier or
  > a computer.  Both can be used for illegal activity.  Both can be used
  > legally.
  > [...]
  > There are other things which are illegal if misused - like weapons and
  > drugs.  But halacha doesn't ban them from those who don't misuse them.

What's interesting here is that the arguments you're making are almost
exactly the same as those that Napster is using to defend itself in
American courts via American law.

The question that I have (and that I've made in a previous mail-jewish
posting) is how HALAKHA views these types of arguments. Sure, the US
courts have rules that copy machines and VCR recorders are legal because
they have many uses that don't violate laws. But does halakha draw the
line at a different place than US law? If so, where is it? Does the
concept of Lifnei Iver (don't place a stumbling block before the blind)
apply to any of this?



From: Jay Kaplowitz <iii@...>
Date: Mon, 12 Jun 2000 10:40:34 -0400
Subject: Pre-Chuppah Wedding Pictures

A few comments on the discussion from a photographer's perspective.  

Several of the earlier posters suggested that photographers wanted to
make all the porraits before the Chuppah because it was more convenient
for them.  Not so.  Making all the portraits before the Chuppah actually
lengthens a wedding job because you have to start perhaps an hour
earlier than you would otherwise.  But it's worth it, because for me, at
least, the fun of photographing or videotaping a simcha is to capture
the essence and joy of the simcha.  And all things being equal, there
will be much more time for simcha when a Chasan and Kallah can make
their grand entrance immediately after Yichud.

Several people suggested photos AFTER bentching.  I don't shoot weddings
very often, but this is very tricky.  As several posters noted, people
(photographers, too) get tired.  Sometimes, older relatives or
out-of-town relatives can't stay for photos after the wedding.  And the
Chasan, Kallah, their parents and siblings are likely to be hot,
perspiring and uncomfortable after all the dancing.  I've shot portraits
AFTER bar and bat mitzvot parties -- and usually regretted it!

Jay Kaplowitz


From: Robert A. Book <rbook@...>
Date: Tue, 13 Jun 2000 02:35:47 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Selling Chomets

Percy Mett <p.mett@...> writes:
> Whisky and other alcohol distilled from grain is 'zeyas chomets'
> = vapours of chomets. As such it is not held by all authorities that it
> is chomets d'orayso. For this reason various rabonim introduced the
> heter of mechiras chomets with the buyback clause.

But nowadays, lots of people "sell" actuall bona fide chometz -- loaves
of bread, even.  This seems to me to fall outside the intent of the
original heter.

> One of the reasons many people dislike using mechiras chomets is that
> the goods are not physically removed from the premises of the 'former'
> Jewish owner.

Perhaps one source of this "dislike" can be found in Shemot (Exodus)
12:15, "the first day ye shall put away leaven out of your houses" and
12:19, "Seven days shall there be no leaven found in your houses."

Accordingly, it would seem that the location, not the ownership, of the
chometz is the real issue.  In other words, I should not be permitted to
store chometz owned by a non-Jew in my house ... but I should be free to
own chometz which I store outside my house.  (Maybe in a "Public
Storage" rental locker?)

It often amazes me how we are extremely strict we are with some things
while being extremely lenient in other, closely related things.  Just
about every Jew I know who is even mildly observant -- even people who
drive on Shabbos for secular events -- is scrupulous about cleaning the
kitchen for Pesach, kashering the oven, boiling the countertops, nd
generally turning things upside down.  Yet, at the same time, many
extremely frum Jews, who also spare no inconvenience in cleaning their
kitchens, happily keep loaves of actual bread in their own homes, secure
in the knowledge that they are "sold" and will be "repurchased" an hour
or two after Pesach.

Yet, the plain text of the Written Torah would seem to indicate that
this is a severe Issur D'Oraisa (biblical prohibition).

Boruch Merzel <BoJoM@...> writes:
> R. Moshe Feinstein, when told of the new concept, among cetain "frum"
> elements, of not selling "chometz gamur" responded in Yiddish: "Oib
> menfarkoift nit chometz gamur, vos farkoifmen ya?"  trans: if one
> doesn't sellactual Chometz then what does one sell The implication was
> obvious that the process made no sense what so ever.

Well, look at it this way.  Suppose you actually get rid of all your
actual chometz.  These days, If you don't sign up with the local rav to
"sell" your chomatz, who would eat in your house after Pesach?

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


From: Mordechai <Phyllostac@...>
Date: Tue, 13 Jun 2000 08:01:13 EDT
Subject: Shir shel yom

<<  From: Irv Cantor <ibclc@...>
 Can anyone give me source for a discussion of the reasons for each one
 of the tehilim said at the end of davening each day, based on the
 content of the particular perek that is said?  I've never seen an
 analysis of this. >>

It is explained in some siddurim, e.g. the sidur 'Otzar hatefilos' (on
'hashir shehayu haleviyim omrim.....') and in the Artscroll English
sidur, based on the explanations given in the gemara.

While on the topic, you may also find it interesting to know that the
GR"A (and others) taught to recite certain special shirim shel yom for
various Yomim tovim (as opposed to reciting the shir for the ordinary
day of the week on those occasions).



End of Volume 32 Issue 54