Volume 36 Number 11
                 Produced: Fri Mar 22  7:07:31 US/Eastern 2002

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

19 year cycle
         [Danny Skaist]
Article on Slavery
         [Eliezer Finkelman]
         [Stephen Phillips]
English commentary on Sefer Tehillim?
         [Ben Katz]
English Tehillim
         [Rachel Swirsky]
Hag kasher vesameah
         [Frank Reiss]
Making A Minyan With Nine
         [Netanel Livni]
Making a minyon with Nine
         [Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz]
         [Stephen Phillips]
Rashi on 10th Perek of Pesachim
         [Josh Backon]
Schlissel Challah
         [Jeanette Friedman]
Shliss Challah
         [Jeffrey Saks]
Unmarried Men wearing Talis (2)
         [Frank Silbermann, David Maslow]


From: Danny Skaist <danny@...>
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 13:50:27 +0200
Subject: 19 year cycle

 <<     Second, it should be noted that the 19-year cycle does not realign
itself exactly with the secular calendar.  There may be discrepancies of
a day or two from one cycle to another, due to other variables in the
Hebrew calendar (i.e, the varying number of days in Heshvan and Kislev
from year to year); as well as variants in the number of solar leap
years in any given 19 year period. >>

The calandar CANNOT coincide every 19 years. The day of the week, of any
given solar day, advances by 3 every 19 years.  This would cause pessach
to eventually fall out on Mon, Wed. or Fri.  and with the other problems
that would cause.



From: Eliezer Finkelman <louis.finkelman@...>
Date: Thu, 21 Mar 2002 13:37:13 -0500
Subject: Article on Slavery

Just in time to help us prepare for Pessah, the current issue of
Scientific American features an article about the nature of slavery:
"The Social Psychology of Modern Slavery" by Kevin Bales (Scientific
American, April 2002, pp. 80-88).  In this article, Bales deals with
slavery, or something very like it, which continues to exist in our
times.  Slavery takes many different forms: Some becoime slaves to pay
off debts, some because of their caste or family history.  Bales also
notes unexpected difficulties in weaning slaves away from their
condition.  Sometimes not knowing how else to live presents a formidable
challenge even to people who have an alternative.  In an extreme
example, Bales tells of an indentures servant who unexpectedly inherits
enough money to buy his freedom, but, overcome by anxiey attacks, asks
his former master to take him back.  Bales discusses the rationales of
slave holders.  Finally, he describes competing models00 of
rehabilitation to help survivors of bondage recover from the lessons
they learned as slaves.  The article includes a reading list, and
websites, for follow-up.  

Shalom, Eliezer Finkelman


From: Stephen Phillips <stephenp@...>
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 17:12 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: Re: Blood

> From: Rabbi Leonard Oppenheimer <pdxrebbe@...>
> There is no such requirement.  The only blood that is buried with a
> person when they are interred is "Dam HaNefesh" or blood that comes
> out at death.  Other blood that may be found from some other cut on
> the body is not neccersarily buried with it.

I have been a Chevra Kadisha member for over 20 years, having been
trained by the members of the North West London (Hendon Adas) Chevra
Kadisha. We bury all blood that was in the body at the time of death,
and I believe that the majority of Chevra Kadishas in London do the
same. I do know, however, that the Chevra Kadisha of Golders Green Beis
HaMedrash ("Munks") only buries "Dam HaNefesh" as you mention. I found
it somewhat strange when I was Missassek [involved] in one of their
Taharas that this was their custom, as I had been trained to bury all
blood that emanates post mortem. I was told that there is a minority
halachic opinion which they follow.

Stephen Phillips.


From: Ben Katz <bkatz@...>
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 12:05:29 -0600 (CST)
Subject: English commentary on Sefer Tehillim?

      The best one is probably Samson Rapheal Hirsch's, which has been
translated from the German.  Nahum Sarna is an expert in Tehillim; he has a
short book on some of them in English.  I hope he comes out with a real
commentary on the entire book soon.

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: Rachel Swirsky <swirskyr@...>
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 13:01:11 -0500
Subject: English Tehillim

Artscroll just published a linear translation of Tehillim that is supposed
to be excellent.

Rachel Swirsky


From: smeth <smeth@...>
Subject: Re:  Hag kasher vesameah

Yehonatan Chipman wonders about the origin of Chag Kasher Vesame'ach:
"Is the implication that making Pesah is so difficult, and that people
are so anxious that they won't do it right, that they need a special
blessing that Pesah will come out kosher?"

My father, tzu lange yahren, is wont to wish people "a kusherin Purim"
and "a freilichen Pesach" for the reason Yehonatan mentioned: it is
fairly easy to have a Happy Purim - the trick is to have a Kosher Purim
[i.e. to understand the difference between "ad d'lo yada" and holeilus;
similarly, everyone has a Kosher Pesach - given all the intense effort
we invest to clean the house, prepare, etc. - the trick is not to have
the paranoia of aino batul beMashe'hui overwhelm you, but to enjoy the
Yom Tov.

A Happy Pesach to all!


From: Frank Reiss <freiss47@...>
Date: Thu, 21 Mar 2002 11:50:45 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Kitniyos

I was wondering, if Pessach started on a Thurs. night, it would end Fri
night, so for that Shabbos it's no longer Pessach. Could one eat
Kitniyos then? If so, how did you store the Kitniyos? Were they not sold
together with the Chometz? It would have to be a prepared food or dry
package. Has this ever occurred?


From: Netanel Livni <n_livni@...>
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 10:46:10 -0800
Subject: RE: Making A Minyan With Nine

BTW, the source for counting an Aron Kodesh in a minyan is actually in
the Gemarah (Berachot 47b, bottom of amud) There are various such odd
things, such as counting the shabbat as a tenth.  Or that 2 talmidei
chachamim sharpening each other in Halacha can count as 3 for a zimmun.
The Gemarah, however rejects these opinions as normative halacha on the
next daf and concludes that a minor who know to Whom he is praying can
count as a tenth.



From: Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz <sabbahem@...>
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 09:24:28 -0500
Subject: RE: Making a minyon with Nine

Noach Stern asked about the custom of opening the aron to "add" the
Torah to the nine to make a minyon or about giving a boy just under bar
mitzvah a chumash.

I asked my rabbi in shiur and he said that we do not do this and it
should not be done.  Apparently there are seforim which mention it (so
it is not pure urban legend) but it is definitely a false minhag.

Regarding saying kaddish, he said that the halacha (Shulchan Oruch and
Mishnah B'rurah - sorry don't remember exact location) state that the
chiyuv is for one kaddish during the day.  This is given as one reason
shuls that have the minhag to have kaddish said by only one person
(mainly the German minhag) will have a different person say each kaddish
or will have a kaddish after tehillim as well as the kaddish after
Aleinu for a different chiyuv.  Thus, the elderly gentleman can indeed
wait.  You should also point out that the main kaddish appears to be the
one after Aleinu, not the earlier ones in Pesukei D'Zimrah.

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


From: Stephen Phillips <stephenp@...>
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 17:12 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: Re: Minyan

> From: Eli Turkel <turkel@...>
> 1.R. Moshe Feinstein writes that in times of necessity one can include a
> boy under bar mitzvah for a minyan when not doing so will result in the
> end of the minyan. He suggests that it is better for the boy to daven
> himself rather than hold anything.

But I seem to recall the Mishna Berura says that Mourners Kaddish may
not be recited in such circumstances. Is this what Reb Moshe says?

Stephen Phillips.


From: <BACKON@...> (Josh Backon)
Date: Wed,  20 Mar 2002 16:59 +0200
Subject: Re: Rashi on 10th Perek of Pesachim

I think the person who told you that Rashi didn't write his commentary
on this perek confused the messechta. The Dikdukei Sofrim indicates that
Rashi didn't write "Rashi" on Chelek (11th perek of Sanhedrin).

BTW in other messechtot, what is called "Rashi" wasn't actually written
by Rashi but by others (RIVAN or Rashbam). Examples: Rashi on Nedarim,
Meilah, Makkot (from daf 19b), Bava batra (from daf 29a), possibly
Taanit, possibly Moed Kattan, possibly Nazir,possibly Keritut.

Josh Backon


From: <FriedmanJ@...> (Jeanette Friedman)
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 08:06:33 EST
Subject: Schlissel Challah

this had to do with a blood libel, where a chassidishe rebbe found blood
in his wine bottles (after his shul key fell off the wall a few times on
the Friday night before Pesach). See, after the key fell off the wall,
the rebbe went back to the shul and found that the wine bottles were
filled with blood, so he threw them all out. The next day the powers
that be came to the shul to prove a blood libel, but there was no blood
in the wine bottles, so the town was saved.

So now, people either put the key into the challah or make an impression
of the key in challah, and its called "Shlissel Challah" and its a
segulah for parnassa, and they do it the shabbos after pesach.

jeanette friedman


From: Jeffrey Saks <atid@...>
Subject: Shliss Challah

The minhag of women (or men) baking the house key into the challah on
the Shabbat following Pesach (also known as a shliss [=key] challah) is
explained with the following reasons:

1. Based on "Pitchi Li Achoti, Ra'ayati..." ("Open up, my
darling..."--Shir HaShirim 5:2), on which the Medrash states "Pitchu li
petach ke-chudo shel machat...," (cf. Shi HaShirim Rabbah 5, s.v. "Kol
Dodi Dofek") = something like "Open your hearts (in teshuvah) like the
eye of the needle, and I (God) will open the rest like [a very large

2. According to Kabbalah on Pesach the gates to heaven were open, and
following Pesach the lower gates are shut, and it's up to us to open
them again, therefor on the 1st Shabbat we put the key on the challah to
show that through the mitzvah of Shabbat we are opening the locks
[original source?].

3. In the desert the Jewish people ate from the manna until after Pesach
upon entering the land (with the bringing of the Omer, see: Josh. 5:11),
at which point the ate from the produce of the land, and became
dependant on their livelihood for the first time (now they had no
manna). The key in the challah after Pesach is a request the God should
open the Sha'arei Parnasah (gates of livelihood). Alternatively, the
manna began to fall in the month of Iyyar, and this Shabbat is always
Shabbat Mevarchim Iyyar.

See: Sefer Ta'amei HaMinhagim, pp. 249-50.  
See: Encyclopedia Judaica, vol. 6, pp. 1419-20 for a photo of a shluss
challah (and other "special" challot).  It seems (from both of the above
sources) that the minhag was to bake the key on top of the challah not
inside (a la the old jail break trick).

My wife prepares a shliss-challah each year--however I had to go out and
buy an antiquated looking skeleton key, both to make it look more
authentic, and because the top of keys in Israel ("pladelet" keys) are
generally made of plastic, and there's a fear it will melt in the
baking!  We have also begun the custom of using a shliss-challah for the
meal on the night of Yom aAtzmaut--for the reasons see the story related
at the beginning of "O! Jerusalem," pp. 9-10--ve-ha-mavin yavin.


From: Frank Silbermann <fs@...>
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 07:03:30 -0600 (CST)
Subject:  Unmarried Men wearing Talis

I heard of a Bal T'shuva who took on the custom of wearing a tallis
during davening, though unmarried, because he had always worn one at the
Conservative shul he grew up in.  Later, he asked a Bet Din for
permission to change his custom.  You see, he wanted to get married, and
wearing a tallis made it more difficult for wives of friends to point
him out to unmarried women at shul.

Frank Silbermann
New Orleans, Louisiana

From: David Maslow <maslowd@...>
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 13:08:22 -0500
Subject: Unmarried Men wearing Talis

While I am familiar with (and even followed in my single days) the
minhag of unmarried men not wearing a talis, I would like to know if
there is some strong prohibition on an unmarried man having a talis on.

I have often observed such men, who wore talisim as ba'alei t'phila or
having receiving an aliyah, removing the talis with great seeming
urgency as soon as they finished (or almost finished) the deed
necessitating its wearing.  I find it somewhat disrespectful barring
some other halachic constraints-and I appreciate that in some cases a
borrowed talis was used to avoid saying a bracha and extended wear is
therefore not appropriate.

David E. Maslow, Ph.D.
Chief, Research Resources Review Section
Grants Review Branch, National Cancer Institute
301 496 2330, Fax: 301 496 6497


End of Volume 36 Issue 11