Volume 35 Number 7
                 Produced: Fri Jul 13  7:08:29 US/Eastern 2001

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Deity's name
         [Ben Z. Katz]
Did Abraham Baer  "clean up" his representation of the Anim
         [Tobias Robison]
         [Baruch J. Schwartz]
Hechsherim  (was Canned Peas)
         [Allen Gerstl]
I'm Visiting Israel -- Love to meet some of you
         [Russell Hendel]
A note on Orthodoxy
         [Bob Werman]
One Hebrew Word A Day
         [Hershel Robinson]
Repeating words
         [Gilad J. Gevaryahu]
         [Barry Best]
Sheva Brochos
         [Dov Teichman]
Transliteration of Halab Yisrael, Clarification and Apology
         [Ira L. Jacobson]


From: Ben Z. Katz <bkatz@...>
Date: Fri, 06 Jul 2001 03:14:57 -0500
Subject: Re: Deity's name

>While I'm at it, you'll notice the typographic convention that I used
>a moment ago for writing the English version of the Deity's name.  I
>don't remember where I saw it originally.  Its advantage over the
>usual variant, which uses a hyphen, is that hyperactive word wrapping
>mechanisms won't do a line break after the second character in the
>trigraph.  I have no hope for, and little interest in, its universal
>acceptance, since the other mechanism is firmly entrenched.

And while I'm at it (again) I do not think there is any valid reason not
to write "God".  I am not aware of any kedushah in English letters, and I
do remember seeing a responsum (sorry, can't remember fron whom, but I can
try to find out if necessary) with the word "Gott" written out in German in
the middle of the responsum with the posek specifically saying (and
writing) that there was no intrinsic holiness in the term.

Ben Z. Katz, M.D.
Children's Memorial Hospital, Division of Infectious Diseases
2300 Children's Plaza, Box # 20, Chicago, IL 60614
Ph 773-880-4187, Fax 773-880-8226


From: Tobias Robison <trobison@...>
Date: Mon, 09 Jul 2001 13:11:33 -0400
Subject: Did Abraham Baer  "clean up" his representation of the Anim

In mail-jewish Vol. 34 #99 Digest, Chaim Wasserman disagreed with my
interpretation of the representation of Anim Z'miroth in Baer's Tefillah
(two widgets for what I wrote, one widget for his reasonable response):

>> One can infer that in 1877 it was still common for Polish Ashkenazim
>> to sing this particular song with correct Sephardi
 >>accentuation. Somewhere between then and 1965, the Ashkenazim almost
 >>entirely dropped that accentuation.

>This conclusion is not compelling. One may also convincingly say that
>Abraham Baer - a German Ashkenazi - "cleaned up" the tune opting for
>correct grammatical application of the words to the tune. Much like
>modern Israeli chazzanim and choral directors do today.

There are two serious problems with Chaim's intereptation:
(1) As indicated originally, "cleaning up" the prononciation radically
modifies the tune, so Baer would do such a thing only if he had a casual
attitude towards the music he was recording. This would be appropriate
in a song book with a simple presentation of each tune.
(2) It is obvious when reading Baer that the attention to detail and
accuracy in recording this music is remarkable. Very complex melismas,
rhythms and  tonal sequences are recorded with precise care.

Therefore it is not likely that the tune was "cleaned up."

- tobias robison


From: Baruch J. Schwartz <schwrtz@...>
Date: Fri, 6 Jul 2001 09:51:29 +0200
Subject: Haftarot

When Pesah begins on Motzaei Shabbat as it did this year, two interesting
phenomena related to haftarot occur in the summer months.

1. Rosh Hodesh Av will come on Shabbat. Even though the general rule is
to recite the haftarah related to the last sefer torah that has been
read, the question arises as to whether the haftarot of rebuke read
during the three weeks override this principle. The Shulhan Arukh is
silent, but the Rema is not.  He quotes many authorities who ruled that
the haftarah of rebuke (Jeremiah 2 "Shim'u") is read and the haftarah
for Rosh Hodesh is omitted, but still says that in a "new"congregation,
where no established custom exists, the haftarah for Rosh Hodesh is
preferable (OH 425:1). The Gra, however, rejects the latter view and
rules unequivocally that the haftarah of rebuke is to be read, and he is
followed by the Mishna Berura (OH 425:viii). The Sephardim follow this
as well (Mekor Hayyim 203:4, citing the Bet Yosef).  This then is the
only case in which Rosh Hodesh comes on Shabbat, only two sifrei torah
are read, and the haftarah of Rosh Hodesh is not recited. Since this is
rare and unusual, it should be brought to the attention if gabbaim well
in advance.

2. Rosh Hodesh Elul will come on Sunday-Monday. Even though the general
rule is that when this occurs the haftarah "mahar hodesh" is read, the
question arises as to whether the haftarot of consolation read during
the seven weeks following Tisha B'Av override this principle. The answer
is even clearer in this case. The Rema himself states explicitly that
"mahar hodesh" does not override the haftarah of consolation (OH
425:2). Since, in this ruling, the Rema was not in any way trying to
oppose the Shulhan Arukh, but merely interpreting it on the basis of the
views of the rishonim, it should not be concluded that the Rema's ruling
is for Ashkenazim only. Rather, as stated in Mekor Hayyim 205:18, the
haftarah of consolation is read and "mahar hodesh" is not, and "this is
accepted by everyone." Still, since it happens only rarely, it should be
brought to the attention of gabbaim.

Interestingly, the Mordechai mentions (comm. to Megilla 31b) that in
Spires "mahar hodesh" was in fact read--but he opposes this
practice. The reason is obvious: since in any case only one sefer torah
is read, and in addition the haftarah "mahar hodesh" has no connection
at all to the consolation of Jerusalem, the haftarah of consolation
"aniya so`ara" overrides it.

This will occur again in 5765.


From: Allen Gerstl <acgerstl@...>
Date: Thu, 05 Jul 2001 13:11:58 -0400
Subject: Re:  Hechsherim  (was Canned Peas)

I may have missed some of the discussions on this subject but as far as
I remember there was little discussion of the technical facts and the
Halachic issues involved; that is I would have liked the discussions to
have proceeded as follows:

1. A description of the factual circumstances in the various canning
plants and how they are Halachically problematic e.g. how does canning
work (perhaps a question as to whether the same vats used for making
brine were used for cooking non-kosher sauces, etc.. (The Star-K website
has some of that technical information but more would be required.)

2. A discussion of the Halachic issues arising from those factual
circumstances, including the various opinions of Rabbinic authorities on
the issues with references, e.g. issues of whether a cleaning process
comes within "tam l'fegam" (a taste that is unpalatable and renders
non-kosher substances as inedible and therefore nullified) or "ein
mevatlin issur le-chatchilo" (one can not deliberately rely upon the
nullification of prohibited foods) etc.  apply.

A problem is that we did not have the input from the kashrut
organizations' staff e.g. from an O.U. spokesman as to (1) and (2) and
why the O.U.  changed its policy as to canned vegetables.  Lacking the
specifics the discussions had a heavy emphasis on political issues of
whether one likes or dislikes "chumros" (stringencies) based upon
whether one is RW or MO etc.  and rather than being focussed on the
relevant issues.

Although the O.U. or other kashrut supervisory organizations whose staff
have great expertise might feel put upon to have to deal with having
their Halachic decissions questioned by unqualified and much less
knowledgable persons, the advantage of such open discussion would be
that it would promote more trust and confidence in the supervisory
organizations (and even led to some Torah learning at the same time).

Perhaps these types of issues (and far more serious issues) would
benefit from the work that could be done by a courageous independant
Orthodox newspaper or magazine with trained ethical professional
journalists who were at the same time serious Orthodox
Jews. Unfortunately most publications are either not staffed by such
persons or they are linked to politically and image-sensitive
organizations or they are otherwise vulnerable to pressure.


From: Russell Hendel <rhendel@...>
Date: Sun, 8 Jul 2001 23:48:51 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: I'm Visiting Israel -- Love to meet some of you

I'll be in Israel (first time in 22 years) around Yom Kippur thru
beginning Succoth. I have corresponded with some of you off line and
would love to meet you (in person). Anyone interested email me

Russell; http://www.RashiYomi.Com/


From: Bob Werman <RWERMAN@...>
Date: Fri,  6 Jul 2001 8:02 +0200
Subject: A note on Orthodoxy

The word "orthodoxy" or "orthodox" is hardly OUR word, and certainly not
of our language.

A mildly clever remark made by Cardinal Newman, a British cleric who
converted to Catholocism -- and learned in college some 55 years ago! --
sticks with me:

"I don't know who your doxy [a prostitute] is, but mine is orthodoxy."

__Bob Werman


From: Hershel Robinson <hershelsr@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Jul 2001 18:17:08 +0200
Subject: One Hebrew Word A Day

There is a web site http://www.owad.de/ (the name owad stands for One
Word A Day) which I discovered just today.  It is a web site and (more
so) a daily mailing list designed to help non-native English speakers
learn to speak English much more betterly just like us native speakers.
I myself generally speak English at a more or less acceptable level and
have no profound need for this site at present.

My Hebrew skills, however, could certainly benefit from expansion,
improvement and refinement from those more versed with the linguistic
and verbal intricacies of the language.

The question I thus present to you is multi-fold:

Are there any other parties interested in receiving one Hebrew word (or
language skill such as grammatical concept) a day?

If sufficient interest is expressed, are there any other parties
interested in assisting, aiding and/or abetting me in creating,
producing and financing such a project?

Hershel Robinson


From: Gilad J. Gevaryahu <Gevaryahu@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Jul 2001 14:53:11 EDT
Subject: Repeating words

This follows my last posting on the issue of a word/phrase/pasuk
repetition.  Dr. R. Hendel already showed that there can be some logic
why some repetitions are allowed and some are not. Every case of
repetition must be judged based on its meaning in the context it is
uttered. Thus, at the end of Yom Kippur we say seven (7) times "Hashem
hu ha'Elokim." Nobody will suggest that these seven repetitions infer a
second, third ... or even seven deities as the expression itself is
limited to Hashem is God. In summery, repetition is clearly prohibited
in cases where the repetitive word/phrase will create an impression of a
second deity. This rule was later expended to include many other
repetitions, but the expansion was not universally accepted, as some
view it as unnecessary.

Gilad J. Gevaryahu


From: Barry Best <barry.h.best@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Jul 2001 12:55:53 -0400 
Subject: RE: Sadducees

From: Idelle Rudman <rudmani@...>
Actually, the Rambam's source is the Gemara, don't have the exact citation
now.  Zadok was high priest in the time of David, and that is a source of
the name.  Along with the priestly family, there were those who became

See the EJ article on Sadducees.

I dont have an EJ handy, but I double checked Rambam on pirkei avos
where it seems he is referring to a Tzadok (the disciple of Antiginos of
Socho) that must have lived many hundreds of years after Tzadok the
Kohen (who was a contemporary of David Ha-Melech).  Am I completely off
in thinking that this is just a coincidence in the names?


From: Dov Teichman <DTnLA@...>
Date: Mon, 9 Jul 2001 11:34:38 EDT
Subject: Sheva Brochos

Is making a siyum is considered "Ponim Chadashos" (a new face) at a
Sheva Brochos? (Assuming there is no other Ponim Chadashos, just like
Shabbos and Yom Tov are considered Ponim Chadashos.)

Dov Teichman


From: Ira L. Jacobson <laser@...>
Date: Wed, 04 Jul 2001 14:34:21 +0300
Subject: Re: Transliteration of Halab Yisrael, Clarification and Apology

Nahum Klafter wrote in mail-jewish Vol. 34 #81 Digest:
>I have been, for some time now, poking fun at people who employ the
>academic convention for Hebrew transliteration because
>     a) These translations [he probably meant transliterations] are not 
> helpful; it's often impossible to figure out what Hebrew is being depicted

Interesting that you mentioned this, because someone recently proposed a
system of transliteration that was totally non-intuitive.  For example,
representing gimmel by "C" zayin by "G" or mem by "W".  Actually, what
Nahum refers to as academic conventions have the tremendous advantage of
being both intuitive and unambiguously single-valued.  Thus, a "q"
represents only a qof.  A "k" represents only a kaf.  Even the two
single quotes refer uniquely to 'alef and `ayin.

In summary, to paraphrase, such transliterations are helpful; it's
nearly always possible to figure out what Hebrew letters and words are
being represented.

Nahum continues:
>Actually I haven't heard from anyone on the transliteration issue

Now you have.  I'm sorry it took me so long.

                         Ira L. Jacobson


End of Volume 35 Issue 7