Volume 37 Number 12
                 Produced: Thu Sep 19  3:29:52 US/Eastern 2002

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Chanukah 5516
         [Zev Sero]
Holy Garments
         [Binyomin Segal]
Japanese Diplomat Who Saved Jews (2)
         [W. Baker, Miriam Goldberg]
Luach Yehudi
         [Caren and Steve Weisberg]
         [Meir Shinnar]
         [Gil Student]
Mi Shebeirach for women
         [Gilad J. Gevaryahu]
Perpetual Hebrew Calendar
         [Tzadik Vanderhoof]
Rashi's daughters
         [Zev Sero]
Socio-Economic Mitzvot
         [Yisrael and Batya Medad]
Sugihara did not work alone
         [Jeanette Friedman]
Tallis in Bathroom
         [Nachum Klafter]
Yerushalmi Online
         [Seforim Online]


From: Zev Sero <zev.sero@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Sep 2002 16:34:01 -0400 
Subject: Re: Chanukah 5516

Yael Levine Katz <ylkpk@...>

> I am seeking a perpetual Hebrew calendar that will be able to calculate
> the dates for Hannukah tav-kuf-tet-zayin - I would like to know whether
> the first day was still in 1755 or already in 1756. 

It is very interesting that you are looking for precisely that date.
5516 is exactly 247 years before the coming year, 5763.  247 years is
the magic number in the Jewish calendar, the grand cycle when the
calendar repeats itself almost exactly.  That is because 247 years is
not only a multiple of 19 years (and therefore has an exact number of
leap years), but is just 50.28 minutes short of 90216 days.  The
50-minute discrepancy is why the cycle won't repeat forever and ever;
eventually it will lose a day.  But the Tur gives it as repeating
exactly for about 1000 years, so it's good enough for most purposes.
It's also only 1.28 days longer than 247 solar years, which means that
if you take any date and go back 247 years, the secular date will be 1-2
days earlier.

The upshot of all this is that Chanukah this year will start on Sat
30-Nov-2002, and Chanukah 5516 started on Sat 29-Nov-1755, i.e. the same
day of the week, and 1 day earlier in the secular calendar.  Both 5616
and 5763 are full leap years (385 days), and therefore Kislev has 30
days, and Chanukah ends on Sat 2 Tevet.

Zev Sero


From: Binyomin Segal <bsegal@...>
Date: Thu, 05 Sep 2002 19:39:16 -0500
Subject: Re: Holy Garments

Andrew Klafter wrote:

> Lastly, it is somewhat inaccurate to call a tallis a "holy garment."
> It's true that nowadays we only use tallesim for prayer, but the whole
> concept of a tallis is that it is an ordinary garment of clothing which
> happens to have four corners.  The separation of religious rituals and
> common daily life in contmeporary society has distorted our view of the
> halakha.  A tallis is simply a piece of clothing.  It can be brought
> into the bathroom and even worn while relieving oneself, and there is no
> prohibition in doing this.  It is not like tefillin or a sefer Torah.

I think, while in theory he is accurate, in practice, this statement is
misleading. There is a concept of a "beged hameyuchad l'tfilah"
(clothing designated for prayer) which takes on a special
status. Examples of this beged are: kittel, tallis, and for those who
wear it -a gartel. Because of its special status, these garments may NOT
be taken into the bathroom.

Today we wear two four cornered garments. The first is generally called
a "tallis katan" (small tallis) and this can indeed be worn into the
bathroom.  The garment has no special significance. However the "tallis
gadol" (large tallis) which is worn exclusively for tfilah takes on that
status and therefore can not be worn in the bathroom.

Although I hope this does not become an annual event,
my new email address is:


From: W. Baker <wbaker@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Sep 2002 11:12:39 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Re: Japanese Diplomat Who Saved Jews

> From: Yeshaya Halevi <chihal@...>
> 	Thank you, Yehonatan, for raising this point. Too few Jews
> remember or ever knew of the heroism of Chiune Sugihara and his wife
> Yukiko. They saved many thousands of Jews by issuing transit visas that
> enabled them to find refuge in Japanese-controlled Shanghai. (To the
> Jews he saved, it was literally "Shang-Chai."  ;)

I recently heard an account of this incredible man and his saving of many
more than just the Mir Yeshiva Jews from the mother of our chazan in my
summer shul.  She, currently an Israeli, was one of those who escaped from
Kovna on the same trip as the Yeshiva.  She was a young child a the time
and spent the war in China, having crossed Russia on the trans-siberian
railroad with her family and the whole Yeshiva.  I had heard of this noble
man in my readings, but hearing the account from a beneficiary and
survivor, made it so real.  An interesting note from her account- When the
was was over, her mother was expecting a child and the little girl thought
that it should be called, either Victor or Victoria.  When her father
heard of what had happened back in Europe, he told her that in no way
could this child be clled Victoria.  She ws named Yehudit.

Wendy Baker

From: Miriam Goldberg <mgoldber@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Sep 2002 11:48:38 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Re: Japanese Diplomat Who Saved Jews

Somehow I didn't notice the original post. Many thanks to those who
responded with details on Sempo or Chiune Sugihara. He saved my
grandmother, my grandfather and my mother and without him neither I nor
my siblings would be here.

Miriam Goldberg


From: Caren and Steve Weisberg <nydecs@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Sep 2002 23:47:28 +0300
Subject: Luach Yehudi

You might want to check out Kaluach. www.kaluach.net for web based.
www.kaluach.org for pc and palm editions. It's quite perpetual and
thoroughly researced as well. The author sits next to me in shul.



From: <Chidekel@...> (Meir Shinnar)
Subject: Re: Maimonides

WRT to Maimonides and being supported, note that according to his
Hilchot Talmud Torah, what is acceptable is that a talmid chacham give
money or merchandise to a merchant, and that the merchant trades on his
behalf without taking a fee - and this seems to be what the brother of
the rambam was doing, who was using the family wealth to trade on behalf
of the family.  The Rambam was consistently throughout his life
vigorously opposed to scholars being  supported. 

Meir Shinnar


From: Gil Student <gil_student@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Sep 2002 16:34:57 -0400
Subject: Re: Mendelssohn

Regarding the attitudes of various gedolim to Mendlessohn's biur, the
following was related to me by R. Ben Kelsen, a talmid muvhak of
R. Shlomo Drillman.  R. Drillman, formerly a student in the
Baranovitcher yeshiva who lived in R. Elchanan Wasserman's house, found
a copy of Mendlessohn's biur in an old bookstore.  He showed it to
R. Elchanan who instructed the young illuy not to read it.

Gil Student


From: <Gevaryahu@...> (Gilad J. Gevaryahu)
Date: Thu, 5 Sep 2002 15:36:45 EDT
Subject: Mi Shebeirach for women

David Fox asks (MJv34n07) << Is it appropriate to make a Mi Shebeirach
for ones wife during pregnancy? Are there other prayers/tehillim that
are appropriate ?>>

I have a manuscript of a Mi Shebeirach for a pregnant women. Although it
is not dated, it has been affixed to the cover of Mendelsohn chumash,
the 1802 Furth edition, and by the look of the MS and the shape of the
letters I am guessing that it is from about the same period or older.

This beautiful Mi Shebeirach (It starts with Yehi Ratzon...) is for the
pregnant woman, so that she should have no pain, that the delivery be
quick, that the unborn child will come out healthy etc. I never saw this
in any other text, but in the same time I never looked for it. There are
still 3-5 words I am not sure about. But I recommend it as a very
thoughtful prayer.

Gilad J. Gevaryahu


From: Tzadik Vanderhoof <tzadikv@...>
Subject: Perpetual Hebrew Calendar

Just be careful to consider the fact that during the 18th century there
was a very confusing "machlokus" between different countries about
whether to use the Julian or Gregorian calendars, so any date from that
period has to be checked as to which calendar it refers to.


From: Zev Sero <zev.sero@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Sep 2002 15:53:57 -0400 
Subject: Rashi's daughters

Aryeh Frimer <Aryeh.Frimer@...> wrote:

> I have checked out the Issue of Rashi's Daughters wearing Tefillen 
> thoroughly.  There is NO source for this folk tale whatsoever.

As for how such a story might have started, my own great-great-
grandmother, Rochel Leah Shagalovich, AKA Rochel Leah di vaininke (the
wine seller), was widely rumoured to wear tzitzit, and still is among
those who know of her at all.  She was widely known as a very religious
woman, as well as a very independent woman in an age when that was
unusual, and someone must once have speculated that she was the sort of
woman for whom it would be in character to wear a tallet katan under her
clothes, and from there the story grew wings.  My grandmother (her
granddaughter) testified, however, of her own knowledge, that the story
is untrue.  That is, her grandmother was the sort of woman who *might*
have worn tzitzit, but in fact she didn't.

Presumably something like this happened to Rashi's daughters.  However,
that Michal bat Shaul wore tefilin seems indisputable.

Zev Sero


From: Yisrael and Batya Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Thu, 05 Sep 2002 19:44:30 +0200
Subject: Socio-Economic Mitzvot

I am reading the Mateh Efraim for Ellul/Tishrei (he was Rav of Brody and
my mother's family comes from Brody) and came across what I would term a
socio-economic "miztva instruction" which I wasn't aware of previously.

In Siman tav-kof-pey-alef, para. 52, he writes that erev Rosh Hashana is
the first of the four days when one can force the slaughterer to
slaughter a cow worth even 100 dinar even if the client has already only
given one dinar and one doesn't have to wait until enough customers have
paid.  I asked around and it seems that since refrigeration was not
available 200 years ago, the butcher would buy a cow and wait until
enough people chipped in for their beef and only then would he
slaughter.  Rav Efrayim Zalman Margoliot obviously is taking in to
consideration the need of the community for beef even if a loss might be
caused to the butcher but their need to enjoy the Chag is paramount.

Are there any works on this general topic and what other "mitzva
instructions" fall in to this category?

Yisrael Medad


From: <FriedmanJ@...> (Jeanette Friedman)
Date: Thu, 5 Sep 2002 12:58:36 EDT
Subject: Sugihara did not work alone

Sugihara, the Japanese consul, who was spying on the Germans, had a
German assistant, who also signed the visas, and certainly did nothing
to stop Sugihara from doing what he was doing. The German assistant was
spying on Sugihara. In addition, the way the people came to Sugihara was
because of the acting Dutch consul, Jan Zwartendyk of the Phillips Co.
(yes that big huge european co.) who was approached by Dutch nationals
who were students in Telz and who needed a way to get home. He said "no
transit visa is necessary for Curacao," and within days, he and the
yeshiva boys made a stamp and stamped any and all passports of Jews who
were able to get it done before he was recalled and the Russians and
Germans started fighting.

Chihal, I don't think it was 29 days, I think it was closer to 2 weeks,
but you can check David Kranzler's Nazis, Japanese and Jews.

As for the rest, Zwartendyk should get as much credit as Sugihara.

Jeanette Friedman


From: Nachum Klafter <KLAFTEAB@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Sep 2002 13:09:23 -0400 
Subject: Tallis in Bathroom

In a previous post about folding one's tallis gadol, I stated that there
is no prohibition in wearing a tallit in the bathroom.  Elazar Teitz has
informed me privately that there are several achronim who do, including
the Taz, Pre Megadim, and Mishnah Berurah.  Therefore, do not bring the
tallis gadol into the bathroom based on anything I have said.

My recollection is that the Aruch Ha Shulchan permits this, which is the
only source I have seen on this topic.  I am at the university and away
from my seforim right now.  I will try to look up sources and post a
[mercifully brief] summary.

-nachum klafter


From: Seforim Online <seforim_online@...>
Date: Thu, 05 Sep 2002 11:55:30 -0400
Subject: Yerushalmi Online

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to mass download the whole web site (over 5 GB of data) and are
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Anyone who will not comply with these requests will be automatically cut
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Please forward this message on to everyone to whom you forwarded the

Thank you for your cooperation.
Seforim Online Staff


End of Volume 37 Issue 12