Volume 40 Number 07
                 Produced: Thu Jul 10  5:42:33 US/Eastern 2003

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Converts, captive women and Ruth, redux
         [Ben Katz]
Eating before Davening
         [David Waxman]
English from Hebrew
         [Judy and Paul Shaviv]
Internet Site Opened for Revadim
         [Avi Feldblum]
Male Moabi Converts
         [Shlomo Pick]
Midrash, Torah Text, and Educational Success
         [David Maslow]
Patach Genuva and Kamatz Gadol
         [Jack Gross]
Steipler Rebbe and Automobiles
         [Rachel Swirsky]
Three types of stealing prohibited(including theft to enrich)
         [Russell J Hendel]
Where do words come from
         [Zev Sero]


From: Ben Katz <bkatz@...>
Date: Tue, 08 Jul 2003 12:14:29 -0500
Subject: Converts, captive women and Ruth, redux

         I think you find this troubling, with all due respect, because
you are approaching it from the wrong angle.  I always saw this as a law
to protect the woman.  It is a bedieved situation, as you surmise,
because unfortunately, throughout history, women get raped during
wartime.  The Torah apparently felt that this would be impossible to
legislate against (there are other such examples in the Torah;
sacrifices, for example, according to the Rambam in the Guide are a
bedieved).  Therefore the Torah wanted to protect the woman from being
discarded thereafter.  Obviously there are ramifications for the man and
his family after.


From: David Waxman <yitz99@...>
Date: Wed, 09 Jul 2003 12:06:18 -0800
Subject: RE: Eating before Davening

Apologies for the delay...

>1. Dr. Fiorino >>I'd add to this that while we are generally enjoined
>from eating before shacharit, a person may do so if he/she is unable to
>make it through davening without eating (e.g., kavanah disrupted
>because of hunger).<<

2. DW >>This sounds like the description of a 'choleh'.  If so, why
shouldn't such a person should make kiddush before davening?<<

>3. Dr. Fiorino >>As far as I know, one only becomes obligated to make
>kiddush after davenening shacharit.<<

I realize that this (#1) is a widespread practice, but where is the
source for this written?  The practice is not in accordance with
Shemirath Shabbath, as will be demonstrated below.  Now I'm not saying
that everyone is obligated to accept this sefer as authoritative, but
the practice should have an alternative source to back it up.

A healthy person is not allowed to ingest anything other than a light
drink before davening.  This law is applicable every day including
Shabbath.  Additionally, there is an obligation to make kiddush prior to
eating on Shabbath morning after shacharit.  Thus the proper course of
the Shabbath morning would be to daven, then make kiddush and eat the
main meal.

According to the Shemirath Shabbath 52:14, one who is too weak to wait to 
eat until the end of davening at shul should:
1. daven shacharith at HOME
2. then make kiddush and eat less then a ka-beitzah of bread or cake
3. go to shul

If one cannot wait that long to eat because of illness, then 52:12 tells
us that he should make kiddush BEFORE shacharith.  The sick person may
eat fruit in the morning without kiddush, and this is preferable if he
doesn't require cake or bread as well.



From: Judy and Paul Shaviv <shaviv@...>
Date: Mon, 30 Jun 2003 10:32:18 -0400
Subject: English from Hebrew

The recent discussion brought back memories of a grand old man, Rev.
Isaac Livingstone z'l, who was responsible for establishing and building
up the main shul in Dunstan Road, Golders Green, London - the first, and
for years the largest in what is now a very frum neighbourhood.  Rev.
Livingstone, who passed away in his late nineties about twenty years
ago, would not be offended if described as an Anglo-Jewish clergyman of
the old school.  Rev. Livingstone was born in an English provincial city
(Bradford, I believe) and had a vocation for the 'Ministry'. In 1913, he
entered Jews' College in London, and in 1914 he was drafted as an Army
Chaplain in the First World War.  He never returned to study, and
received his first pulpit in 1918.  He was courteous, gentlemanly, and a
wonderful and sympathetic pastor. Anyway, he was keenly interested in
the Hebrew origins of English, and used to translate 'rodof acharayhem'
as 'he rode off after them'. He also pointed out that the silent 'k' in
English (eg knee, know) could be seen in Hebrew, using as an example the
Hebrew root 'k-v-r' , which if you didn't sound the 'k' yiielded the
root 'b-r' corresponding to the English meaning, 'bury, or burial'.
There you go .... (He also gave the same sermon every year on Shabbat
Nachamu, which involved a joke about the congregation who turned up at
the Rabbi's house at four o'clock on Shabbat afternoon, having heard the
rabbi open his sermon with the invitation 'Come to tea, come to tea my
people'.  He took this as proof that no-one paid attention after the
first sentence of a drasha - or, as he was wont to pronounce it in the
now-disappeared old Anglo-Jewish pronounciation - 'dro-sho' ).

Have good summer --
Paul Shaviv, Toronto


From: Avi Feldblum <avi.feldblum@...>
Date: Thu, 10 Jul 2003 05:09:41 -0400
Subject: Internet Site Opened for Revadim

To all my friends here, I am proud to announce to the list the
information I recieved from Dr. Pinchas Hayman of the formal opening of
the Talmud-Revadim Internet site.
From: Pinchas Hayman

I am delighted to announce the formal opening of our internet site for
Talmud-Revadim.  Please have a look and give us your impressions:


Best regards,
Pinchas Hayman

I am also taking the liberty of including the first paragraph of the FAQ
on the list:

What is the Revadim Method? 

The Revadim Method is an approach to the study of Oral Tradition. The
Oral Tradition is seen as a living legal system, and not only as written
literature. Therefore, one should learn the literature of the Oral
Tradition in accordance with the dynamic process through which it was
formed. Since the page of Talmud we study today is comprised of various
historical layers, it is difficult for the uninitiated learner who
simply reads the text as one continuum to distinguish between the
various periods, places or academies, and types of literature in every
sugyah (Talmudic discussion). This difficulty brings frustration to many
students, young and old.

The Revadim Method was developed to solve these difficulties, offering a
simple and interesting way to study Oral Tradition. The Method gives
every learner the skills to learn Talmud independently and understand
the evolution of the Oral Tradition. The entire Revadim Method staff
dedicates its efforts to the spreading of Torah learning and
values. With Hashem's help, we will succeed!

For truth in advertising purposes, I also include the following

When and how was the Method developed? 

As mentioned in the answer to the previous question, the basis of the
Method is ancient and well-established. However, consistent application
of the Method in each and every Talmudic sugyah (discussion) is the
initiative of Rabbi Professor Meir Simchah Feldblum of blessed memory
who dedicated his life to the teaching of Torah, and served as a Rosh
Yeshivah, and as an academic in the departments of Talmud of the Bernard
Revel Graduate School of Yeshiva University, New York and Bar Ilan
University in Israel. The present director of the program, his student
Rabbi Dr. Pinchas Hayman, is responsible for translation of the Method
into widely applicable pedagogic and didactic terms. 

Avi Feldblum (ben R. Meir Simchah Feldblum zt'l)
aka your friendly moderator


From: Shlomo Pick <hspick@...>
Date: Wed, 9 Jul 2003 12:43:40 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Male Moabi Converts

to correct a misconception by russel and perhaps others:

a male moabi convert can convert to judaism, it's just he can't come in
to the _kahal_ and marry someone (female) meyuchaset (pedigreed,
i.e. normative israelite who is not a mamzer [bastard in the halakhic
sense]). if he converts and is mechalel (desecrates) the shabbas, he is
chayav mita. if he observes the shabbat he is fulfilling his obligations
(unlike a non-Jew who is not allowed to observe the Jewish shabbat).

a female moabit can come into the kahal and marry a male israelite who
is meyuchas. it's a halacha lemoshe mesinai, i believe, something that
boaz knew but ploni almoni didn't - see the brisker rav's torah on ruth.



From: David Maslow <maslowd@...>
Date: Tue, 8 Jul 2003 14:03:23 -0400 
Subject: Midrash, Torah Text, and Educational Success

In Vol. 39, #88, David Farkas wrote:
"It seems to me that in schools where Tanach is taught to children with a
determined push to emphasize drash, the dropout level from religious life,
upon reaching college age, is much higher than the old fashioned schools
that teach it the old fashioned way."

Are there any data to support this conclusion, which would seem to be
measurable, and, if true, of great importance.

It would be important in such an analysis to control for the different
populations of students the schools might attract.

David Maslow


From: Jack Gross <ibijbgross@...>
Date: Tue, 8 Jul 2003 23:02:16 -0400
Subject: Re: Patach Genuva and Kamatz Gadol

> From: <MDSternM7@...> (Martin D. Stern)
> In reality the patach under the final mappik hei
> (sounded or aspirated hei) is a 'patach genuva' which always appears
> under a final guttural letter (hei, chet or ayin) when the preceding
> vowel is not a patach or kamats (i.e.  an 'a' sound formed at the back
> of the mouth) [1]. It is inserted because of the difficulty in otherwise
> moving the tongue back so as to articulate the guttural and is,
> therefore, pronounced before it, as in gavoah, sameiach and zeroa'.  One
> often hears this mispronunciation in hallel whose recital is probably
> invalidated as a result!

>    Incidentally, this would seem to be evidence that the kamats gadol
> was pronounced as the Sephardim do as a long 'a' and not a short 'o' as
> the Ashkenazim do.[2] ...

[1] The "patah genuva"* occurs only following a diphthong consisting of
a vowel + a ("Y" or "W"-valued) semivowel:
   hirik (gadol)= i+y (e.g., siyah),
   tzereh       = e+y (reyah),
   holam        = a+w/o+w (cawah for Yekkes, ~ cowah for others),
   shuruk       = u+w (ruwah).
The semiconsonent (W or Y) between is then "shared" by the vowels on
either side, at least acc. out local Syrian hazzanim.

[2] It's quite obvious that kamatz katan and k. gadol (or rahav as some
term it)* were, at least at the time and place the vowel-points were
introduced, very close in pronunciation (and thus distant from patah) --
how else could they share the same symbol?

*[aside: Does anyone know why patah is construed as fem. and kamatz as

  Yaakov Gross


From: Rachel Swirsky <swirskyr@...>
Date: Wed, 9 Jul 2003 12:15:44 -0400
Subject: RE: Steipler Rebbe and Automobiles

>From: Akiva Wolff <wolff@...>
>The Steipler Rebbe was reputed to have said that if there were a
>Sanhedrin today, they would forbid the automobile (presumably because of
>the high number of people killed in them).

This being the case, should they not have forbidden cliffs, fire,
childbirth, war, alcohol, knives and other such 'dangerous' things?
Charriots were okay and people could be crushed beneath the wheels or
the horses could get away and trample someone.This line of reasoning
always bothers me.  Halaha is not out to assur everything under the sun.
As with all things, the danger is in how they are used.

Rachel Swirsky


From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@...>
Date: Sun, 13 Jul 2003 21:18:54 -0400
Subject: Three types of stealing prohibited(including theft to enrich)

Tzadik (v39n97) states that stealing is taking something with no
intention of returning it. Actually the prohibition of theft is
mentioned several times in the Bible and from these repeated prohibition
we infer that 3 types of theft are prohibited: (a) taking money with
intent of keeping it (b) taking money with intent of returning it (that
is, teasing theft...but Rambam seems to think that this is only
Rabbinically prohibited, a position which seems to go against the
Sifray); (c) taking money with intent of enriching the person stolen (eg
I steal $100 from a person with two witnesses watching me...when I am
caught I have to pay the person $200---this is prohibited even if my
intent was to give the person money against his will).

I once found a Responsum of Chief Rabbi Ovadiah Joseph on the main
reason for all these prohibitions: Theft is prohibited not because of
the monetary loss it causes but rather because of the emotional anguish
it causes the recipient

Russell Jay Hendel; http://www.RashiYomi.com 


From: Zev Sero <slipstick1@...>
Date: Tue, 8 Jul 2003 21:25:28 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: RE: Where do words come from

Mark Symons <msymons@...> wrote:

> Doesn't the phrase we recite before kriat shema in the morning "uvanu
> bacharta mikol am velashon" - You chose us from all peoples and
> languages - imply that other languages existed before Hebrew?

No, all it implies is that other languages existed at the time that He
chose us - a good 450 years after Bavel.

Zev Sero

[Nearly identical replies aslo recieved from:
	Michael Kahn <mi_kahn@...>
	Martin D. Stern <MDSternM7@...>


End of Volume 40 Issue 7