Volume 35 Number 13
                 Produced: Tue Jul 17  6:16:35 US/Eastern 2001

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

         [Alan Cooper]
Artificial Insemination (4)
         [Eitan Fiorino, <rubin20@...>, Stuart Cohnen, Janet
Deity's name (2)
         [Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz, Kochav ben Yehuda]
"Ein adam lomed ela ba-makom she-libbo hafetz"
         [Elozor Preil]
Kedusha (2)
         [Rachel Smith, Mordechai]
More on haftorahs
         [Michael Feldstein]
Psychiatric Treatment in the Orthodox Community
         [Stan Tenen]
Why does the Torah request "meitav haaretz" payment?
         [Kenneth B Posy]


From: Alan Cooper <amcooper@...>
Date: Sun, 15 Jul 2001 10:32:58 -0400
Subject: Ali

Prof. Carmy writes:

>Some years ago, by the way, a high school rebbi who thought himself
>quite clever informed his students that Muslems believed in the divinity
>of Muhammad and that it was forbidden to refer to the then heavyweight
>champion of the world as Muhammad Ali, since that meant "Muhammad is my
>god." It fell to me to inform the fellow that Arabic, like Hebrew,
>distinguished between ayin and aleph. "Ali" was a proper noun,
>corresponding to "Eli" in Hebrew, as in Eli haKohen.

An amusing story indeed.  Readers may be interested to know that the name 
Ali (with initial ayin) goes all the way back to the Canaanite texts from 
Ugarit, where it is attested as an epithet of the god Baal.  A similar 
divine epithet found in the Bible is Elyon ("Most High").  Biblical 
scholars have long wondered whether a title like Ali might help to explain 
the difficult text of 1 Samuel 2:10.  One might read the second clause 
(against the Masoretic qere): "The Exalted One thunders in the heavens."

Alan Cooper


From: Eitan Fiorino <Tony.Fiorino@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jul 2001 10:16:45 -0400
Subject: RE: Artificial Insemination

> From: Leona Kroll <leona_kroll@...>
> 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?

I don't know which posting this question is directed at, but there is a
din that a Jew whose father's identity is completely unknown is not
permitted to marry for fear that the marriage will be incestuous.  I do
not know the halacha lemaaseh parameters of this din (e.g., there may be
categories of people that such a person would be permitted to marry,
such as converts, because there is no fear of incest).

Eitan Fiorino
Equity Research Analyst - Biotechnology
Citigroup Asset Management, 100 First Stamford Place, Stamford, CT 06902
Phone: (203) 961-6238, Fax: (203) 602-6045
Email: <tony.fiorino@...>

From: <rubin20@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jul 2001 08:58:16 -0400
Subject: Re: Artificial Insemination

I belive that all side in the controversy agreed it would be. In fact,
that was one of the major reasons behind those who forbid the practise.
This is based on the Gemra stating that one should not marry far away
from his first family (where it presumably is impossible to notfie
family number one) for fear of such an occurrence.

From: Stuart Cohnen <Stuart.Cohnen@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jul 2001 10:25:59 -0400
Subject: Artificial Insemination

In the battle of Rav Moshe Feinstein zt"l with the Satmar Rebbe zt"l,
over artificial insemination, the crux of the Satmar Rebbe's argument
was exactly this problem. He very strongly wanted to be sure of Jewish
bloodlines, and was afraid of the possibility of siblings marrying.

From: Janet Rosenbaum <jerosenb@...>
Date: Thu, 12 Jul 2001 17:22:53 +0200
Subject: Artificial Insemination

The sole determinant of paternity is the origin of the gametes, so 
the sperm donor would be the father of the child, irrespective of who 
raises it.  Hence, any two of a sperm donor's children would face the 
same prohibitions as apply to two children with the same father being 
raised together in a nuclear family.

These types of cases are rare, but they do happen.



From: Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz <sabbahem@...>
Date: Fri, 13 Jul 2001 09:33:42 -0400
Subject: RE: Deity's name

>From: Ben Z. Katz <bkatz@...>

>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.

When we were writing the soc.culture.jewish FAQ many years ago, we dealt
with this issue.  I don't know if it has ben changed in the years since,
but we basically said that the main reason for writing it in a different
way, was to show the respect for Hashem and not because of any intrinsic
kedusha in the word.  It is a way of showing that had it indeed been a
name of hashem (which it is not) then we would treat it differently.

At the time, one of the contributors stated that when he went to the day
school in Boston, the Rav (Rav J. B. Soloveitchik Z'TzL) once wrote the
letters G O D on the blackboard and erased them to show his psak that it
was not a "holy name".

Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz - <sabbahem@...>

From: Kochav ben Yehuda <kochav_benyehuda@...>
Date: Fri, 13 Jul 2001 13:50:40 +0200
Subject: Re: Deity's name

>From: Ben Z. Katz <bkatz@...>
>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.

 From Deuteronomy (12:3-4) is derived that we do not erase G-dīs Name
(that we destroy "other gods" but do not do the same to G-d).  And from
this the Gemora (Shevuot 35a-b) derives that this prohibition applies
only to the 7 Holy Names of G-d.  See also the Rambam Hilchos Yesodei
HaTorah 6:1-2).  So Orthodox Jews (sorry for the use of the word
Orthodox :)) will not write out a Holy Name of G-d except for in Holy
books.  And when these texts need to be desposed of, they are to be

However G-d is not a Name of Hashem, it is just the (English)
translation of one of His Holy Names, so actually from Torah we are not
obligated to also not write out such a translated Name.  But most
Orthodox Jews will do so anyway, out of respect for His greatness.  As
we can not even begin to grasp His greatness, how could we write out any
of His names ?  It would seem as if we could describe Him.

Although we are not obligated mi d'oraisa (from the Torah), Nimukei
Yosef (on Nedarim 7b), says that, the one who does so anyway is to be
admonished and chastised.

And Rav Moshe Feinstein zt"l commented that not writing out, the
translated Name of Hashem, fully is limited to the Name in those foreign
languages (like G-d), and not to other names of Hashem. (Igros Moshe,
Y"D I, 172).

However since it is not prohibited mi d'oraisa to write out the
translated name of G-d, since it may be erased (see the Shach in Yoreh
De'a 179:11), there are those who intentionally write out (just like you
mentioned) the name of G-d in other languanges, just to demonstrate that
it may be erased.  (Rav Soloveitchik z"l is said to have done such).



From: Elozor Preil <EMPreil@...>
Date: Fri, 13 Jul 2001 00:57:37 EDT
Subject: Re: "Ein adam lomed ela ba-makom she-libbo hafetz"

      "Ein adam lomed ela ba-makom she-libbo hafetz" - A person can only
      learn in the place that's right for him.  I've always thought this
      means not just picking the right yeshiva, but also which subjects
      within Torah one studies, and how he studies them.

Seth, I believe your "but also" IS the primary meaning of this statement.

Kol tuv,


From: Rachel Smith <rachelms@...>
Date: Fri, 13 Jul 2001 06:44:16 -0700
Subject: RE:  Kedusha

>From: Jacob Sasson <jacobsasson@...>
>I dont have the exact source right now but Rav Ovadia Yosef rules that
>the main part of the kedusha (the actual devarim shebikdusha) are the
>"Kadosh, Kadosh..."  Those are the only parts that must be redited
>according to the nusach of the minyan.  Being that Kadosh and Baruch are
>the same in every minyan, one should say the first line of the Kedusha
>according to his custom. The same thing would apply to the lines in
>between the devarim shebikdusha (Leumatam).

Since the Shulchan Aruch states strongly that one should not recite the
line before "Kadosh" but should rather remain silent and listen to the
shliach tzibur recite the line, I find it odd that R. Ovadia Yosef would
recommend reciting this line at all, regardless of nusach (unless I'm
misunderstanding your post).

From: Mordechai <Phyllostac@...>
Date: Tue, 17 Jul 2001 00:09:50 EDT
Subject: Kedusha

It should be noted that the beginning of the kedusha in chazaras
hashat"z is actually just an introduction to the two passages of
kodosh.... and boruch kivod.....which are the actual kedusha. In fact,
the original minhag Ashkenaz (followed today in German-Jewish
congregations, those that follow the GR"A and in Eretz Yisroel, I
believe) is that only the Shat"z (leader of prayer service) says those
passages and not the congregation. Similarly, the intervening brief
passages of 'liumoson...' and ' uvidivrei koshicho...' are also said
only by the Shat"z.

If someone feels a compulsion to say any passage differently from the
congregation despite what I have just stated, I humbly suggest that it
be done 'bilachash' (quietly - in a whisper) so as not to cause dissent
 / bad feeelings / argument unnecessarily - and not loudly, as I have
seen done at times. Hashem likes when his children get along and
differences need not always be trumpeted - especially during communal



From: Michael Feldstein <MIKE38CT@...>
Date: Fri, 13 Jul 2001 08:34:12 EDT
Subject: More on haftorahs

One small addition to Baruch Schwartz's excellent post on which
haftorahs to read when Tisha B'av falls out on Sunday...

There is a custom in many shuls that if Rosh Chodesh Elul falls out on
Sunday and Monday, that on the Shabbos preceding Rosh Chodesh the first
and last psukim of the Haftorah Machar Chodesh are read, immediately
after the haftorah of consolation is read (but before the closing

That way, we are recognizing in the haftorah (albeit in a small way)
that the next day is Rosh Chodesh.

Michael Feldstein
Stamford, CT


From: Stan Tenen <meru1@...>
Date: Thu, 07 Jun 2001 09:23:56 -0400
Subject: Re: Psychiatric Treatment in the Orthodox Community

At 11:29 AM 6/6/01 +0000, Andrew Klafter wrote:
>I am a psychiatrist and an Assistant Professor at the University of
>Cincinnati College of Medicine.  I just delivered a Grand Rounds Lecture
>to my department titled, "Psychiatric Treatment in the Orthodox

Have you seen "Sanity and Sanctity," by David Greenberg, M.D., and Eliezer 
Witztum, M.D. (Yale U. Press)?

There was a review of it by Sylvia Rothchild in the Boston Jewish Advocate 
this week (June 1-7, 2001), and the review may have appeared in other 
papers also.

It's about their experiences with the very Orthodox community in Jerusalem.

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


From: Kenneth B Posy <kbposy@...>
Date: Sun, 15 Jul 2001 10:45:34 -0400
Subject: Why does the Torah request "meitav haaretz" payment?

   From: Daniel Cohn <dcohn@...>
   Can anyone offer an explanation on why does the Torah request a person
   to compensate damage in "meitav haaretz" (the best of his land) when
   payment is made by means of a piece of land? That is, if the damage is
   worth $100, paying 100 sq. mts. of land worth $1/sq. mt. looks the same
   as paying 10 sq. mts. of land worth $10/sq. mt., doesn't it?

The mishna on gittin 49: states, at least according to Rashi, the reason
is for "tikkun haolam", and the Gemara interprets that to mean as an
additional incentive to prevent damage, by requiring the damager to give
up his best property. Most rishonim, though, learn that the conclusion
of the gemara is refers to how we determine what "meitav" is, not the
reason for its requirement, and that doesn't really address the basic
economic question that Daniel asks

While a full exposition of the above issue would require a new mailing
list, one simplistic way of looking at it may be that the Torah requires
the Mazik, (damager) to take the burden of monetizing the property, by
providing the property that is easiest to sell. (I have yet to see that
explanation concisely inside, but it fits with the approach of the
Ramban and Tosphose) In fact, many rishonim hold that the ultimate form
of Meitav is Cash!, leading the phrase, "cash is king".(see tosphose BK
11) The sugyas are in BK 8: and gittin 49.

Betzalel Posy


End of Volume 35 Issue 13