Volume 35 Number 59
                 Produced: Wed Oct 17  1:07:38 US/Eastern 2001

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

         [Russell Hendel]
Birkat Kohanim - Neila
         [Menashe Elyashiv]
Duchenen during Neilah
         [Mark Steiner]
Duchening duchen during Neilah in Israel
         [Shimon Lebowitz]
Eating Shmitta produce in the normal way
         [Joshua Hosseinof]
Electric Shavers - Philips (Norelco?) and Machon Tsomet
         [Roger & Naomi Kingsley]
Opinions of Rishonim
         [Saul Davis]
         [Zev Sero]
Seven Species/ Seven Holidays
         [Gershon Dubin]
Siyum questions
         [Joshua Hosseinof]
Top Seven Male Jews
         [Daniel Cohn]
Ushpizin (was: "Top Seven Male Jews")
         [Elie Rosenfeld]


From: <rhendel@...> (Russell Hendel)
Date: Mon, 8 Oct 2001 16:38:55 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: ANAV means RESPONSIVE not HUMBLE (Rav HIrsch)

Harvey Sicherman and Gilad Gevaryahu cite several explanations of the
word ANAV in v35n61. Their methodology emphasizes citing various

By contrast I have emphasized an approach that focuses on a unifying
concept of the diverse meanings of the underlying root.  The Hebrew root
Ayin-Nun-Hay has a fundamental unifying meaning of RESPONDING whether it
is responsiveness during intimacy(ONAH), the helpless responsiveness
during rape (INAH), the response to a query, the refrain response in a
song etc.

Hence Rav Hirsch interprets ANAV not as modest or caring but rather as
RESPONSIVE. Nu12-03 should be translated that Moses was the most
RESPONSIVE leader that ever existed (So as Rav HIrsch points out Moses
forgave Miriam when she insulted him, and didnt listen to Joshua who
wanted to jail those who prophesized about his death, but MOses did blew
up when Korach tried to oust him from power).

We could then interpret the Talmudic passage that >our temple was
destroyed because of Rav Zecharias RESPONSIVENESS< to mean that Rav
Zecharia did the right thing: The temple deals with perfection: It is
better to have no temple then a temple with imperfect offerings (since
it is important that man should have living perfection as a goal to

More could be said but I think this alternative approach has its own

Russell Hendel; http://www.RashiYOmi.Com/


From: Menashe Elyashiv <elyashm@...>
Date: Tue, 16 Oct 2001 14:13:27 +0200 (IST)
Subject: Birkat Kohanim - Neila

All Sefaradi and most non-Hasidic have Birkat Kohanim in Neila in Israel.
It seams that the doors of the Hechal - Aron Hakodesh - can be left opened
because the Sefrei Torah are heigher than 10 tefahim and are considered a
seperate domain. I would recommend closing the doors when they open out
(not sliding) and the Kohanim when turning around with their faces covered
with the Tallit could hit the doors....
BTW - in Sefaradi minhag - Avinu Malkanu is said as usual in Minha, not in
Neila, but some Selihot are said after Hazarat Hashas which fills the 20
-25 minutes between sunset and night time.


From: Mark Steiner <marksa@...>
Date: Tue, 16 Oct 2001 13:46:00 +0200
Subject: Re: Duchenen during Neilah

    Concerning duchenen during neilah in our shul (a Jerusalem synagogue
which follows the Ashkenaz/"perushim" rite), I have the following
astounding story to relate.  Every year there is great pressure to
finish neilah before sunset so that the kohanim can duchen (in Jerusalem
the duchenen is considered a big "inyan" [issue]).  This year in the
middle of the neilah selihot, ("Petah lanu sha`ar..."), the gabbai in
our shul suddenly called "Kohanim" and the kohanim began to duchen!  I
was too flabbergasted to say anything, as I was totally unprepared for
this, and the berakha (benediction) had already been recited.  After Yom
Kippur I demanded to know what had happened, and one of the members
showed me one of the new "yeshivish" mahzorim with halakhic opinions of
today's poskim [decisors].  An opinion of R. Eliashiv states that if
sunset is approaching on Y.K., one can have the duchenen before selihot
of neilah.  Obviously, what R. Eliashiv had meant was that selihot
should be skipped over and then said later after the repetition of the
amidah by the hazan.  I was informed to my dismay that this is actually
done in some yeshivot (though I was relieved to learn that in Ponevez,
duchenen simply doesn't happen, and in other major yeshivot, duchenen is
followed by 20 minutes of avinu malkeinu, singing, etc., as mentioned by
previous participants).  Our baalebatim completely misread the teshuva
and investigation showed that there is a serious possibility that a
berakha levatala [vain benediction, taking the Alimighty's name in vain]
had occurred, during Neilah of Yom Kippur, because Hazal ordained the
benediction of the kohanim to occur in a specific place (before the
benediction beginning sim shalom).  At any rate, that's what the posek I
asked maintained, and what I had feared from the beginning.

    I don't want to post here the lessons I learned from this episode,
but simply relate the story for the edification of others.


From: Shimon Lebowitz <shimonl@...>
Date: Tue, 16 Oct 2001 14:41:34 +0200
Subject: Re: Duchening duchen during Neilah in Israel

In my shul (The Y.I. of Claremont Pkwy, Kiryat Moshe/Givat Shaul,
Yerushalayim), the Aron haKodesh was closed during Birkat Kohanim.

Shimon Lebowitz                           mailto:<shimonl@...>
Jerusalem, Israel         PGP: members.xoom.com/shimonl/pubkey.htm


From: Joshua Hosseinof <jh@...>
Date: Mon, 15 Oct 2001 18:29:11 -0400
Subject: Eating Shmitta produce in the normal way

How is it determined what is the normal way of eating a particular fruit
or vegetable.  For any of the fruits and vegetables that have the
kedushat shvi'it (sanctity of the 7th year) we are only allowed to eat
them in the way they are normally eaten.  Either raw or cooked or both.
My question is related to the etrog - the one I received is an Otzar
Beit Din etrog, so it has the kedusha of shvi'it.  From what I have
heard therefore, you can only use it to make Jam, or wait until it dries
up and then dispose of it.  But you cannot eat it because it is not the
normal way.  I usually eat my etrog after sukkot, and I know of other
people who do as well.  So while it may not be the main way of consuming
an etrog, it is certainly a distinct minority of people who do eat it
(it's even recorded in the gemara in Sukkah that Rabbi Chanina took a
bite out of his Etrog).  The question is, if it's allowed to make the
etrog into jam because that's the normal way, it should also be allowed
to eat it directly since some people eat it that way also.

Joshua Hosseinof


From: Roger & Naomi Kingsley <rogerk@...>
Date: Sat, 13 Oct 2001 19:47:21 +0300
Subject: Electric Shavers - Philips (Norelco?) and Machon Tsomet

In view of the recent queries about electric shavers, it might be of
interest to note that Rabbi Yisrael Rosen, the head of Machon Tsomet,
has put out a statement in his weekly Parsha sheet (Shabbat beShabbato
for Parshat B'reishit) of difficulties found in certifying the Philips
range of shavers for series 6000 and above, following tests conducted
according to the criteria of Rav Rappaport's article in Techumin volume

The article also mentions that a fax sheet of approved shavers can be
obtained from (Israel) 02-9931889.  There is a website -
www.zomet.org.il - but I do not know what is displayed on this.

I think that the Philips range used to be marketed in the US under the
Norelco name.

Roger Kingsley


From: Saul Davis <sdavis@...>
Date: Tue, 16 Oct 2001 17:34:59 +0200
Subject: Opinions of Rishonim

Eliezer Finkelman wrote in mail-jewish Vol. 35 #57:
"A number of posters to Mail-Jewish have expressed the judgment that our
masters and teachers the Rishonim expressed various ideas, once legitimate
parts of the Jewish conversation, which have since become heretical.  I have
also heard this judgment outside of Mail-Jewish."

That is a very interesting contention (that ideas of the Rishonim have
since become heretical). IMHO this is not correct - does Eliezer or
anyone else have examples? In any case what is heretical (and who
decides it)? Some very frum people think the State of Israel is heresy -
personally I think that makes them heretical etc!

Saul Davis


From: Zev Sero <Zev@...>
Date: Mon, 15 Oct 2001 14:32:45 -0400
Subject: Re: Piyutim

Michael Kramer <mikek@...> wrote:

> Based on this, I imagine that this explains the structure of the piyut
> as such that the Chazan says a stanza and then prompts the kahal to say
> its piece[...]
> So in the piyutim, the Chazan says a stanza and then prompts the Kahal
> "Imru Lelokim" i.e. "Say the next stanza as a recitation to G-d".

`Imeru' means `praise', as in `Et Hashem he'emarta...vaHashem

> So there is no need to explain the run-on thought from one stanza to
> the next as the MJ resppondents have struggled with.

On the contrary, this is precisely my point.  This is how the piyyutim
*should* be said.  But they're not, and matters are not helped by the
way that they are printed in some popular machzorim.  The piyyut Mike
quoted is a perfect example.  The way this *should* be recited is for
the chazzan to call out `imeru lelokim' (praise Hashem), and the people
to respond with a verse of praise, and stop; they should *not* conclude
with `imeru lelokim'.  The chazzan may then optionally repeat the verse
in song, after which he should stop, and *then* call out again: `imeru
lelokim', rinse, lather, repeat.  But he should not sing `imeru lelokim'
as the conclusion of the preceding verse, any more than a daily chazzan
should say `halelukah hallelukah' (rather than `...halelukah.
Halelukah...').  And machzorim should not be printed with `imeru
lelokim' at the end of the previous verse (actually, even in many of the
machzorim that misprint other piyyutim, this one is printed properly,
probably because it's so obvious).

Zev Sero


From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@...>
Date: Tue, 16 Oct 2001 12:34:08 -0400
Subject: Seven Species/ Seven Holidays

From: David and Toby Curwin <tobyndave@...>

<< An idea came to me on chag which I'd like to share with the readers. 
I've noticed a certain connection between each of the seven species...>>

        I believe it was Rabbi M. Kornfeld who made the connection
between the seven holidays and the seven liquids (Yayin[wine], Dam
[blood], Shemen[oil], Chalav [milk], Tal [dew], Devash[date honey],

Blood........Yom Kippur
Honey......Rosh Hashana

        Most of the connections are fairly obvious.  Some of yours IMHO
stretch a point, such as figs/Yom Kippur (the sin of etz hada'as was on
Rosh Hashana and the forgiveness on the following Shabbos (Shabbos
Shuva, year 1!).



From: Joshua Hosseinof <jh@...>
Date: Mon, 15 Oct 2001 17:30:30 -0400
Subject: Siyum questions

Can anyone point me to some sources for the text that is read at the
completion of Masechet of the Talmud.  Specifically, why is the special
Kaddish read in this case.  If I am not mistaken, the only other time
this Kaddish is read is at a funeral.  Was the formula of the Hadran
Alach and special kaddish unique to the printing of the Vilna Shas, or
was it from much earlier and therefore a more universal custom?  Should
Sephardim use their version of the funeral Kaddish (also read on Tisha
B'av) or just use the Kaddish al Yisrael that is read after any Torah
learning?  Sephardic Machzorim for Simchat Torah have a "Hadran Alach"
for the completion of the Torah, so I am inclined to believe that the
"Hadran Alach" at the completion of a Masechet is a much earlier custom
than just from the time of the Vilna Shas.

Joshua Hosseinof


From: Daniel Cohn <dcohn@...>
Date: Tue, 16 Oct 2001 01:38:06 -0300
Subject: Top Seven Male Jews

Some time ago I heard (don't ask for sources though...) that the reason
was that the seven ushpizin had all been wanderers for a certain period
of their lives, which "qualified" them to be guests in a temporary hut,
"wanderer style" like the sukka. Which is not the case for Shlomo, in
fact he's associated with the Beit HaMikdash, the quintessential
"permanent dwelling" in our tradition.




From: Elie Rosenfeld <erosenfe@...>
Date: Mon, 15 Oct 2001 15:24:28 -0400
Subject: Ushpizin (was: "Top Seven Male Jews")

In V35#55, Ed Norin asks why the Ushpizin consist of Avraham, Yitzhak,
Yaacov, Yosef, Moshe, Aaron, and David, where usually you find six out
of those seven, but with Shlomo instead of Joseph as the seventh.  In
other words, why is Yosef used instead of Shlomo for the Ushpizin.

I have mentioned the following answer to this several years in the past.
I'm not sure to what degree it is original and to what degree I heard
parts of it "brought down" from somewhere.  If anyone has seen this in a
written source, please let me know:

The seven that we invite as Ushpizin were all wanderers, exiled from
their homes, for major portions of their lives.  Thus, it is appropriate
that we invite them as guests to our Sukkah.  By contrast, Shlomo was
born to royalty and presumably lived in a palace his whole life.  So he
is more suitably connected with the following holiday, Shmini Atzeres,
which (as pointed out on this list a few months ago) celebrates our
return to our fixed, comfortable dwellings after leaving the Sukkah.
Therefore, Shlomo is associated with Shmini Atzeres - as further
evidenced by the choice of Haftarah for that holiday - and Yosef was
used to fill out the tally for the seven days of Sukkos.


Elie Rosenfeld


End of Volume 35 Issue 59