Volume 34 Number 25
                 Produced: Tue Feb 13  6:28:24 US/Eastern 2001

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

         [Bernard Raab]
Eating after Fasting
         [Wendy Baker]
Harry Potter
         [Nadine Bonner]
Hebrew National
         [Marc Shapiro]
Kashrut of bottled water
         [Kenneth G Miller]
Laws of Amida
         [Neal B. Jannol]
OK -- no more peas
         [Carl Singer]
Peas - still
         [Carl Singer]
Pronunciation of Holy Name
         [Mark Symons]
Shoveling Snow
         [Bernard Raab]
         [Y. Askotzky]
Women and Gemara
         [Sid Gordon]


From: Bernard Raab <beraab@...>
Date: Mon, 05 Feb 2001 14:43:54 -0500
Subject: Cheese

Regarding the thought or the suggestion that technically all cheeses
could be regarded as kosher today, I heard this expressed as fact by a
supervisor for one of the major hashgachah organizations some years ago,
at least for all cheeses produced in this country (USA). However, he
cautioned that we are still enjoined from such cheeses by the sanction
against "g'vinas akum" (non-Jewish cheese). Too bad; but it would be a
shame to see all of the kosher cheese companies go out of business, now
that they have managed to produce a wide variety of cheeses, and they
were there for us when "American cheese" was all there was!


From: Wendy Baker <wbaker@...>
Date: Fri, 2 Feb 2001 10:06:46 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Eating after Fasting

I am not sure this is on MJ topic, but I find that, for me, age has made
a great difference in my ability to fast easily.  When I was young it
was torture and I felt hunger, headaches and weakness.  This was even in
the years before I smoked and drank coffee.  Now I am about reay for
social security and find the fast, if not a pleasure, quite easy.  I
don't somke or drink caffine coffee any more, so the caffing deprivation
headache is gone, but I don't feel the hunger pangs and find myself able
to concertrate on the machzor much easier.  I am a non-insulin dependent
diabetic and have no problems with this, just delay taking my pills
until I break the fast-They go in with the first glass of water:-)

Hopefully you will find it easier as you get older.

Wendy Baker


From: Nadine Bonner <nfbonner@...>
Date: Mon, 5 Feb 2001 19:27:18 -0500
Subject: Harry Potter

My children and I are big Harry Potter fans, so I am a bit biased. I
find them to be very moral books focusing on good vs. evil. They are
also "buddy" books about friendship. I do think it is ironic, however,
that a school for wizards sends its students home for a Xmas holiday and
has a very merry but secular celebration for the students who remain at


From: Marc Shapiro <shapirom2@...>
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 2001 09:59:02 -0800
Subject: Hebrew National

To add to my previous posting, I asked Rabbi Shmuel Tuvia Stern if his
hashgacha on Hebrew National is for the non-religious, or for everyone,
including the Orthodox, and he replied that it is for everyone and
Hebrew National is 100% kosher. I didn't ask him if he himself ate it
since I thought that was disrespectful (after all, he had just told me
that everyone can eat it), and it is possible that he personally keeps
glatt. Since a great talmid hakham takes responsibility for this product
and says that it is 100% kosher, should we perhaps rethink the bad
reputation Hebrew National has? If not, why not? If I am invited over
R. Stern's house for Shabbat should I tell him that I can't eat there?
(If there are real problems with R. Stern's hashgacha then these should
be mentioned, as there is certainly no issue of lashon hara in this
regard. However, bear in mind that he is a widely respected talmid
hakham who has been close to the gedolim of the last couple of

        Marc Shapiro


From: Kenneth G Miller <kennethgmiller@...>
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 2001 17:31:20 -0500
Subject: Kashrut of bottled water

I once heard someone (sorry, can't remember who) suggest that water
bottled at the spring might not need kashrus supervision, but that other
waters *would* need to be supervised. Many bottled waters have labels
which proudly proclaim "bottled at the source", so it seems reasonable
to presume that waters which lack this announcement were shipped by
tanker truck to the bottling plant.

If so, then we would need to make sure that the tanker truck was not
previously used for shipping some non-kosher liquids (or that it was
kashered in between). This is ONE of the reasons that a hechsher is
needed on "100% pure vegetable oil", is it not?

I am aware that there are many rabbis who allow any bottled water, but
I'd like to know how they respond to the logic above.

Akiva Miller


From: Neal B. Jannol <nbj@...>
Date: Mon, 5 Feb 2001 9:56:30 -0800
Subject: Laws of Amida

There was an interesting article in the Jewish Observer re: Hoicha
Kedusha - i.e., the hazan/shaliach tzibbur not repaeting the full amidah
and instead leading the kahal until and through kedusha.  This is done
at mincha in situations where time is of the essence.

The artilce made me think of the various laws of the repetition of the
Amidah.  I would like to know the sources for the following customs, if
there are any:

1.  During the repetition, remaining with one's feet together and only
answering Amen and not Boruch hu ovaruch shemo.

[One oral source for this is Rav Soloveicheck, this was his opinion and
is commonly followed by his talmidim. Mod.]

2.  What may one talk about during the repetition - is it as strict as up to
shemoneh esreh.  

[Acc to the Rav, and I think most poskim as well, it is forbiden to talk
during the repetition. Mod.]

3.  Sitting or standing - I would assume the majority psak is sitting, which
poskim require standing.

Neal B. Jannol
Riordan & McKinzie


From: Carl Singer <CARLSINGER@...>
Date: Fri, 2 Feb 2001 10:19:49 EST
Subject: OK -- no more peas

More troublesome to me than the discussions of the mechanics of Peas
vs. the halchic issues is that sad, plain truth that there exists in our
frum communities:

a - People who are so consumed with kashruth related chumras that they
seem to exclude many opportunities to do mitzvahs ben adam l'havayro

and (worse yet)

b - People who use kashruth as another way of dividing (sub-dividing)
the Jewish community -- i.e., identifying folks as being less frum,
pious, etc., then themselves by virtue of eating something they deem
"not as kosher" (whatever that means ?)

Nuf said.
Kol Tov
Carl Singer


From: Carl Singer <CARLSINGER@...>
Date: Fri, 2 Feb 2001 07:17:28 EST
Subject: Peas - still

<<  From: Joshua Hosseinof <hosseino@...>
 Subject: Kashruth of Canned Vegetables

 See http://www.star-k.org/kkfall00/kosher.html for a very informative
 article on the kashruth of canned vegetables.  The only question left
 unanswered to me is why it should even be an issue if the same equipment
 processes traif food in cans.  The way the canning process works, the
 cans are hermetically sealed and then cooked in large pressure cookers
 called retorts, or they are steamed.  In any case, the cans are
 hermetically sealed, so are we saying that the steel is permeable, so if
 a can of peas is cooked at the same time as a can of pork and beans, or
 on the same equipment that pork and beans was once cooked on, then the
 can of peas is somehow getting flavor from the pork and beans.  So the
 missing link in understanding the kashruth problems of cans is, do we
 consider a hermetically sealed steel can to be permeable? >>

With all due respect:

At issue isn't the physics (or mechanics) of the cooking vessels (cans,
retorts, pressure cookers, etc) or the human/system issues of
mis-labeling, accidental co-mingling, etc.

It's the halacha, that's of interest in dealing with Kashrus.

One could probably place a sealed can of pork into their Shabbos cholent
and argue (mechanics) that in now way could anything from that pork
escape or taint their cholent -- but would one consider that chulent
suitable (kosher?)

As other posters have begun to detail, there are halachik issues re:
vessels, shared vessels, etc.

Kol Tov
Carl Singer


From: Mark Symons <msymons@...>
Date: Tue, 6 Feb 2001 22:06:35 +1100
Subject: Pronunciation of Holy Name

I've often wondered when Y-H-V-H stopped being pronounced. It seems to
me that it originally was pronounced. For example, In Shemot 5, 1-2, in
the conversation between Moshe and Pharoah, Moshe says to Pharoah "Ko
Amar Y-H-V-H Elo-hei Yisrael shalach et ami ...", and Pharoah replies
"Mi Y-H-V-H asher eshma et kolo ..."  How did Moshe (and then Pharoah)
pronounce the Name? It doesn't make sense that he would have said "A -
D0 - NAY", because to Pharoah that just means Lord or Master, which is
not very specific, and similarly saying "Hashem" ("The Name") would have
been meaningless, so it seems to me that he must have pronounced
Y-H-V-H! Or, did he translate it somehow into Egyptian?

Mark Symons
Psychiatrist, Baal Koreh
Melbourne, Australia


From: Bernard Raab <beraab@...>
Date: Mon, 05 Feb 2001 15:51:24 -0500
Subject: Shoveling Snow

Michael and Abby Pitkowsky wrote:
"Today I purchased a sefer which has a responsa about shoveling snow on
Shabbat.  The sefer is called _Peninei Hora'ah_ and is published by
Machon Ariel which is under the directorship of R. Sha'ar Yishuv
Hacohen.  The responsa are collected from questions asked to the rabbis
affiliated with the institute.  Rabbi Y. Neuberth, the author of
_Shmirat Shabbat KeHilchatah_ answered the question about shoveling snow
on Shabbat and said the following: (pgs. 89-91)

1.  With an eruv it is permitted since snow is not muktzeh, there is no
problem of nolad, and the snow is equivalent to a thorn which in the
public domain and presents a danger to people (see Orah Hayyim 308:18)
R. Neuberth does say that one should shovel in a different manner than
usual, shinui.

2.  If there is no eruv he says that one should shovel but move the snow
less than four amot (cubits) each time."

I wonder does Rabbi Neuberth address the issue of the shovel? With an
Eruv, why would the shovel not be muktzeh? Without an Eruv, assuming
it's not muktzeh, can one carry the shovel out of his garage or house
(r'shus hayachid--private domain) to the sidewalk (r'shus
harabim--public domain)? I understand that one could argue "sakanot
nefashot--public danger" to justify clearing snow from a public walkway
on shabbat. Does he rely on this argument or is his heter more general?

For many years we lived in suburbs of New York and Washington
DC. Whenever it snowed on shabbat the snow in front of the homes of the
orthodox remained uncleared, including out own. After shabbat it was
difficult, sometimes impossible, to clear, having been trampled down and
hardened. This heter would have made a difference, PROVIDING that the
shuls publicized it so as to avoid any potential problem of "maaris


From: Y. Askotzky <sofer@...>
Date: Sun, 4 Feb 2001 19:08:28 +0200
Subject: Smoking

A book was published in Hebrew on the subject some years ago. It is
titled Me-afar La-efer if I recall correctly. Additionally, over the
last few years posters have been put up all over the Torah communities
in Israel forbiding smoking on the yom tov which was signed by many,
many poskim. Recently a sign was put up, signed by the leading Torah
scholars, forbidding one to start smoking and requiring one who does
smoke to make a serious effort to quit.

kol tuv,

Rabbi Yerachmiel Askotzky, certified sofer and examiner
<sofer@...>   www.stam.net   1-888-404-STAM(7826)


From: Sid Gordon <sid.gordon@...>
Date: Sun, 04 Feb 2001 19:59:07 +0200
Subject: Women and Gemara

Mike Gerver responds on this issue that [the assumption that
opportunities for girls to learn gemara are readily available
in Israel] 

> is not at all true on the high school level, at least in my

I concur.  One would think that Raanana, being a hotbed of anglo-saxon
modern orthodox radicalism :-) would be a prime place for this kind of
thing to be occurring.  But it is not.  It still requires a lot of push
from both the parents and the girls, and it doesn't seem to have reached
critical mass yet.  MaTaN (a women's learning network) does provide
shiurim in gemara for women (and girls) in the evenings but this is not
a part of the school curriculum.

Interestingly there is a "bagrut" (matriculation exam) in gemara.  A
girl can take up to three units of this exam which consists of learning
(and subsequently being tested on) about eight dapei gemara per unit
with Rashi over the course of two years.  This is called the "maslul
toshba" (roughly: oral torah course) and the girl can choose to learn
either the gemara or some other amount of mishna (actually the girls
usually do the mishna version -- only if the girl is insistent and the
school is cooperative can she do the gemara version) There is also a
5-unit bagrut (called the maslul talmud) in which the student studies
and is tested on 50 dapei gemara plus Rashi and Tosafot (this is what
the yeshivot tichoniot do), however this exam MAY ONLY BE TAKEN BY BOYS!
This is the policy of the Ministry of Education.  The daughter of an
acquaintance of mine who studies gemara on her own and in the evening
MaTaN shiur and is quite proficient, found this out when she tried to
apply to take the exam.  She wrote a letter of protest to then Minister
of Education Yossi Sarid but got no response (he has since left that
position, of course), and her teacher convinced her to drop the idea.

In the area of equal learning opportunities for girls, I would say
Israel has a ways to go yet.

Sid Gordon


End of Volume 34 Issue 25