Volume 35 Number 5
                 Produced: Thu Jul 12  6:37:58 US/Eastern 2001

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Artificial Insemination
         [Leona Kroll]
Bar/Bat Mitzva and Simanim
         [Amiel Naiman]
beitzim shelonu
Islam is not idolatry (2)
         [Kochav ben Yehuda, Robert Rubinoff]
Marriage Query: Qidushin B'sh'tor
         [Michael Frankel]
More reference books on Laining
         [Russell Hendel]
Nusach Sfard used in Israel vs. Outside (2)
         [Frank Silbermann, Dani Wassner]
Online Source for Yerushalmi
         [Russell Hendel]
Repetition of Words in Prayer
         [Daniel Katsman]
Shemini Atzeret and the Sukkah
         [Bernard Raab]
Torah & Sefer Yehoshua
         [Ed Werner]


From: Leona Kroll <leona_kroll@...>
Date: Sun, 1 Jul 2001 01:20:35 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Artificial Insemination

What about the implications for the children, if by some bizarre chance
they were to marry? I realize this farfetched, but if theoretically it
happened- would that be incest?


From: Amiel Naiman <amiel.naiman@...>
Date: Tue, 3 Jul 2001 17:11:03 -0500 
Subject: Bar/Bat Mitzva and Simanim

Perhaps someone can explain the application of simanim - shtei sa'aros -
in reaching adulthood.

1)	PARSHAS ZACHOR - If there is a Bar Mitzva on Parshas Zachor,
generally shuls don't allow the Bar Mitzva boy to lain the maftir on Parshas
Zachor.  Reason:  that reading may be a mitzva min ha-Torah and the Bar
Mitzva boy who just turned 13 is only an adult through a chazakah since no
one actually is checking the boy for shtei sa'aros.  We don't want to rely
on a Rabbinic chazakah for a Biblical mitzva.  My question is - what about
the next year when he is 14; or 15 or 16?  Aren't we still relying upon the
same chazakah?  I've never heard of a shul restricting the ba'al kriah past
age 13.  At what point is there no longer a Rabbinic chazakah and the child
is an adult Biblically?
2)	TEVILAS KAILIM - A similar question regarding my 12 year old
daughter.  Can I send her to the mikva to be toivel kailim?  Tevilas kailim
is also a mitzva min-haTorah.  Isn't a 12 year old girl a Bat Mitzva only
Miderabbanan without actually checking her for the shtei sa'aros?
3)	CHECKING SIMANIM - Let's say one were to check the child for the
simanim.  Exactly what is being checked?  Meaning, if a boy has hairs at,
say, age 10, 11 or 12 - those hairs are certainly no indication of simanei
gadlus.  So exactly when are these two hairs supposed to be growing?  The
night of the bar or bat mitzva?  How would one know what is being looked at;
perhaps the hairs were there as a koton and are no indication of reaching
4)	ALOPECIA - When a child has a medical condition where there is no
hair on the body, what's the determining factor in reaching gadlus min

Amiel Naiman
<amiel.naiman@...> <mailto:Amiel.naiman@amcol.com> 


From: SBA <sba@...>
Date: Wed, 4 Jul 2001 12:41:03 +1000
Subject: beitzim shelonu

 From my brother, a mashgiach for RAZ Beck -the (Charedi) rav of Melbourne:

 The Rov shlita doesn't allow eggs+onions peeled overnite at our
 shops+caterers.  However, if we put a bit of salt on it, mix with
 something or leave it with the shell - then he permits it.



From: Kochav ben Yehuda <kochav_benyehuda@...>
Date: Fri, 29 Jun 2001 14:44:09 +0200
Subject: Re: Islam is not idolatry

The Rambam indeed rendered Islam, as opposed to Christianity, to not be 
avodah zarah.
"Treatise on Martyrdom" (Iggeret Shmad).
The Rambam answered to a question from an Arab covert, in his letter to 
Ovadia hager tzedek, who had heard in Eretz Isroel that Islam would be 
idolatry, that Islam is not avodaz zarah, as they worshop the One G-d.
And as most poskim have ruled likewise, it is even not forbidden to enter a 


From: Robert Rubinoff <rubinoff@...>
Date: Mon, 02 Jul 2001 21:36:21 -0400
Subject: Re: Islam is not idolatry

> From: Andy Goldfinger <Andy.Goldfinger@...>
> Indeed, I believe that the word All-h is not a proper name, but
> a cognate of E-l, which simply means G-d. {Could some Arabic scholar
> confirm this?].  

To be more precise, it is a combination of "al", meaning "the" (cognate
to Hebrew "aleh", which means "these") and "al-ah", cognate to Hebrew
"elo-ah", both meaning "God"; the two words elide, procuing the double
"l".  So the literal meaning is simply "the God".



From: Michael Frankel <mechyfrankel@...>
Date: Tue, 03 Jul 2001 22:12:47 -0700
Subject: Marriage Query: Qidushin B'sh'tor

Because of a mayseh she'od loa hoyoh, but perhaps will, a friend of mine
with an engaged son is trying to gather information about qidushin with
a sh'tor (i.e. marriage by contract).  Since i have simply not heard of
anybody using this , I am wondering whether anyone else has (perhaps in
a sefaradi or edot hamizrach environment?) and if so - are there any
documented sources for the form of the sh'tor.  of course the SA (EH
s'32)has a brief description and the oruch hashulchon a somewhat
lengthier exposition, but i'm wondering if anyne knows of some actual
textual implementation which has been used, and where it might be

Mechy Frankel                 W: (703) 588-7424
<mechyfrankel@...>  H: (301) 593-3949


From: Russell Hendel <rhendel@...>
Date: Sun, 1 Jul 2001 17:23:56 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: RE:  More reference books on Laining

Art Werchulz in v34n97 gives a nice list of references for Baalay
Kriah. I just wanted to add 2 books: a) Mordechai Breuers (Hebrew)
Mishpetay Hateamim which contains over 200 examples and goes thru all
the rules of servants and kings (b) Dr Prices (English) Konkordance of
Cantillation sequences (which I understand will come out in a Hebrew
version this or next year).

Russell Jay Hendel; Ph.d.A.S.A
http://www.RashiYomi.Com/mj.htm VISIT MY MAIL JEWISH ARCHIVES


From: Frank Silbermann <fs@...>
Date: Mon, 2 Jul 2001 23:13:14 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Re: Nusach Sfard used in Israel vs. Outside

> From: Aliza Berger <aliza@...>
> Why, among modern and Centrist Orthodox Ashkenazi people, does nusach
> sfard seem to be more popular in Israel than nusach ashkenaz, while
> in the US it is the other way round? 

In Europe, chassidim generally daven with Nusach Sephard, while the
misnagdim kept Nusach Askenaz.

Before WWII, most American Orthodox Jews had been driven by pograms and
poverty from Russia, where most rabbis were misnagdim.  Furthermore, the
spiritual leader of Yeshiva University, Rav. Yoseph Solevetchik, was of
the misnagdi Brisker tradition.  The "modern Orthodox" also drew from
the non-chassidic German Hirschian tradition.  Thus, the American
Orthodox "establishment" davened Nusach Askenaz.

Most Chassidim lived in places that, before WWII, didn't have it as bad,
so fewer emigrated to America.  (Also, chassidim might have been more
reluctant to leave their rebbes.)

Israel, in contrast, was heavily populated by Ashkenazi survivors of the
Holocaust.  Most of the survivors were from Hungary and Rumania -- the
only countries with heavy Jewish populations of whom as many as 50%
survived (aside from Russia, which wouldn't let Jews leave).  Chassidism
was strong in these lands, hence the widespread use of Nusach S'phard
among Israeli Ashenazim.  (By the way, New Orleans, Louisiana has an
Ashkenazi synogogue that uses Nusach S'phard -- the Shul was started by
late-arriving Holocaust survivors.)

Furthermore, the spiritual leader of religious Zionism, Rav. Kook, was
heavily influenced by Chabad (his mother was of a Lubavitch Chassidishe
family) and kept many Chassidishe minhagim.  Add to this the heavy
Sephardi immigration during the 1950s, and it made sense to standardize
the Army prayerbook around Nusach S'phard.

Frank Silbermann
New Orleans, Louisiana

From: Dani Wassner <dani@...>
Date: Tue, 3 Jul 2001 10:55:37 +0200 
Subject: RE: Nusach Sfard used in Israel vs. Outside

A very good question. I don't know the answer, but I would ask an even
broader question:

I grew up in Australia where almost everyone it seemed (except
chabdnikim and sefardim) davened nusach ashkenaz. In Israel, almost
everyone seems to daven nusach sefard. In fact, it seems to me that just
about the only people in Israel who daven ashkenaz are olim from
America, Australia, UK, S.Africa etc. (Ok, that's an exaggeration, there
are some native Israelis who daven ashkenaz- but not many it
seems)... Has Nusach Ashkenaz become Nusach Anglo-Saxon?

Dani Wassner, Jerusalem


From: Russell Hendel <rhendel@...>
Date: Sun, 1 Jul 2001 17:22:45 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: RE: Online Source for Yerushalmi

In volume 34 number 96 Lorne Schachter asks

< They have just started (this past Shabbos) a new cycle of Daf Yomi for
Talmud Yerushalmi.  Does anyone know of any online resources for
Yershalmi? >

Fellow Mail-Jewisher Gilad Gevaryahu introduced me to MTR (Do a google
search on the web) which contains BAVLI, RAMBAM and YERUSHALMI (but no
responsum) and allows you to do searches. There are versions for a
variety of operating systems.

Russell Hendel; http://www.RashIYomi.Com/mj.htm VISIT MY MAIL-JEWISH ARCHIVES


From: Daniel Katsman <hannahpt@...>
Date: Mon, 2 Jul 2001 23:22:44 +0200
Subject: Re: Repetition of Words in Prayer

Yisrael Medad wrote:

> Although I didn't follow this discussion closely, (being an admirer of
> good Chazanut), may I ask if there is any source delineates between
> repetition of words of the Amidah and everything else?  I would presume
> that repetition during Hallel or the Brich Shemay or other elements of
> the Tefilla would logically be acceptable

My uncle, Rabbi Moshe Litoff, relates that when he had a shul in Chicago
in the '50's he asked this question of his teacher in the yeshiva there
(now "Skokie"), Rabbi Chaim Regensburg.  The question pertained
specifically to hazarat ha-sha"tz.  Rabbi Regensburg responded that
words contained in a "matbe'a she-tibbe'u hakhamim bivrakhot (a berakha
text formulated by the Rabbis)" may not be repeated.  In this context
that meant words of the actual amida.  For prayers not in this category,
such as the introductory passages in kedusha and other piyyutim,
repetition of words would not be a problem.

I infer from this that words in birkhot keriat shema and yishtabah,
which are also formal berakhot, may also not be repeated; I imagine the
same would apply to actual Biblical verses.  Hallel may be a special
case, because the gemara specifcally allows repetition of whole verses
where this is the custom.  Berikh Shemeih, which is from the Zohar,
would not be a problem.

Daniel Katsman
Petah Tikva


From: Bernard Raab <beraab@...>
Date: Wed, 04 Jul 2001 02:10:23 -0400
Subject: Re: Shemini Atzeret and the Sukkah

>From: Shalom Kohn <skohn@...>
>2.  How do we reconcile the gemarah?  Probably in terms of the gemarah's
>own question of whether sitting in the Sukkah is ba'al tosif [adding to
>the commandments], and its response that people sometime sit in a sukkah
>other than on Sukkot because it is pleasant to do so.  In our climates,
>and in current social practice, people do not sit in sukkot as a general

This comment in S. Kohn's beautiful input reminds me of the year we were
priviledged to spend Sukkot in Palo Alto, California, where the weather
is incredible year round and especially beautiful around Sukkot. A young
couple in our apartment complex built a succah for the few observant
families in the complex, and located it around the back of the
building. The year before, they informed us, they had built it near the
swimming pool, and found it awkward to use in the afternoon, since
residents thought it was a new kind of gazebo thoughtfully provided by
management, and would sit in it for relief from the sun! So much for
"general rules".


From: Ed Werner <edwerner@...>
Date: Fri, 29 Jun 2001 03:32:32 +0800
Subject: Re: Torah & Sefer Yehoshua

Jonathan Katz writes:
> Check out the book "Noah's Flood" by Pitman and Ryan (two professors at
> Columbia University). They claim to have found archaeological evidence
> supporting a flood in the Middle East thousands of years ago. The
> following website also has a news article about this research:
> http://www.earthinstitute.columbia.edu/news/story9_1.html 

I've read the article. Unfortunately, it has nothing to do with the
Flood described in the Torah. It speaks of a regional catastrophe on
Black Sea shores (not exactly "Middle East") some 7600 years ago
(aren't we counting now year 5761 since the Creation?). The Torah, on
the other hand, describes a world-wide flood some 4000 years ago (in
2105 BCE according to our traditional chronology), in which all humanity
but Noah's family perished. Not only have I found no evidence of such a
flood, but the archaeological record in Egypt, Mesopotamia, Crete,
etc. shows constant occupation of many without any considerable break
circa 2100 BCE, an furthermore, among quite a plenty of Egyptian and
Mesopotamian texts of that time, there is no mention whatsoever of a
large-scale flood -- instead, the picture reflected by those records is
that of continuous existence of civilization (albeit with some man-made
troubles: invasions, rebellions, etc.)  It is also hard to see how a
flood in 5600 BCE could have influenced the compilation of the Gilgamesh
story in the 3rd-2nd millennia BCE -- but that's quite another question.


Ed Werner


End of Volume 35 Issue 5