Volume 40 Number 52
                 Produced: Sat Aug 30 22:35:48 US/Eastern 2003

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Airline food in emergencies
         [Carl Singer]
Avoiding woman--Standards of Modesty (2)
         [Emmanuel Ifrah, Warren Burstein]
Blessings of Thanksgiving
         [Alex Heppenheimer]
Bringing your own food on board planes
         [Douglas Moran]
Certified non-kosher?
         [Stan Tenen]
Kosher and Halal
         [Shaya Poter]
Milk and Meat
         [Bernard Raab]
Schechita and halal
         [Saul Mashbaum]


From: Carl Singer <csngr@...>
Date: Fri, 29 Aug 2003 08:12:05 -0400
Subject: Airline food in emergencies

>I'm suggesting airlines themselves could stock them for situations when
>passengers and their regular kosher meals are separated by unfortunate
>Aside from the actual air travel, they could be very useful in
>situations where an airline typically gives passengers stranded
>overnight a meal voucher.
>Dave Eckhard

With airlines running on a shoestring and food services handled by many
vendors and thus prone to lots of errors and disconnects (for those
airlines still offering food) -- I'd suggest doing what I used to do
when I was young and foolish and travelled too much -- bring a (plastic)
jar or peanut butter with you.  It works for breakfast, lunch and dinner
as well as midnight snack.

Seriously -- one should consider being self sufficient re: food, when
traveling.  Even towns with the kosher restaurants or stores are of no
use if your plane is delayed and you arrive after closing.

Carl Singer


From: Emmanuel Ifrah <emmanuel_ifrah@...>
Date: Fri, 29 Aug 2003 05:05:27 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Avoiding woman--Standards of Modesty

In Volume 40 Number 51, Gershon Dubin wrote:

> That many people walk around in the street dressed in a way that would
> have gotten them arrested 100 years ago **at the beach** does not
> change the halacha.  Determination of that halacha by reference to
> societal norms applies only to such areas as the lower leg and,
> according to the Aruch Hashulchan (only), married women's hair.

This is also the opinion of the Ben Ish Chai for those Jews living "in

Interestingly enough, the same Posek who decided that Jewish women in
Muslim countries should wear the veil when going out (in his book
"Chukei ha-Nashim;" cf.  one of my previous postings), decided that in
Europe one could make a blessing in front of the uncovered hair of a
married woman.

Which shows that halacha CAN differ according to societal norms, within
certain boundaries.

As a conclusion, I would like to BEG the religious public to stop
calling R. Yechiel Michal ha-Levi Epstein's code the "ArUch
ha-Shulchan". It is called the "ArOch ha-Shulchan".  "Aruch ha-Shulchan"
is grammatically incorrect because of the smichut.  Moreover this phrase
is a quotation from a verse in the book of Isaiah (21:5 if I am not
mistaken). If think that should be enough to prove the case.

Emmanuel Ifrah

From: Warren Burstein <warren@...>
Date: Fri, 29 Aug 2003 15:01:39 +0400
Subject: Re: Avoiding woman--Standards of Modesty

>From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@...>
>Not true; the parameter is that which is usually covered.  That includes
>anywhere between the neck and knees except the lower arms and hands.

Does "usually covered" mean by people now, or people when the halacha
was codified?  Which people - observant Jews or the general population?
It seems to me that it means the latter, because if it is when it was
codified, how are later generations to know what was usual then, and if
it's what observant Jews do, it's circular.

What is "usually covered" today by the general population is somewhere
between "anywhere between the neck and knees except the lower arms and
hands" and "a square handbreadth of thighs and breasts are not exposed".

In my Modern-O shul it sometimes happens (generally with guests at
simchas) that some people come with some exposed skin between the neck
and the knees, but certainly dressed acceptably for the general
poplulation.  No one asks them to leave.


From: Alex Heppenheimer <aheppenh@...>
Date: Thu, 28 Aug 2003 07:48:09 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Re: Blessings of Thanksgiving

In MJ 40:48, Perry Zamek <jerusalem@...> commented on my
earlier post:

>>At any of the other rounds, you can end up losing some or all of 
>>what you've won if you get a wrong answer. So I would venture that
>>there can certainly be no question of saying a berachah for each 
>>individual level in this game.

>I don't have references here at the office, but I would argue on the
>following basis. The din is that one who finds an object (I assume, 
>with some significant value) makes a bracha (as in my original
>question). This is true, even if the object will be seized by the
>authorities later on. In other words, the bracha is on the present
>(happy) situation, not on what may happen in the future (loss later
>on in the game.

True, but it seems to me that there's a crucial difference between these
two scenarios. In the case of the found object, your ownership of it
(until the authorities find out about it) is absolute, and it would
(presumably) be considered your property for all halachic purposes: you
could use it for kiddushin; if it pushes your net worth above 200 zuz
then you're no longer allowed to accept tzedakah; etc. By contrast, in
the game show, your winnings are conditional on what happens in the next
few rounds of the game, and it would seem that there doesn't exist a
binding promise/contract to pay you until you've reached one of the
"plateau" levels or you decide to keep your current winnings and
withdraw from the game.

So this might boil down to the following question: if you receive good
(or bad, r"l) news that depends on some condition, do you recite the
relevant berachah immediately or only when the condition is fulfilled?
I would think that the berachah is recited only when the condition is
fulfilled, though I don't have any sources for this.

>If I understand the MB correctly (on the basis of your quote), this 
>is a bediavad (after the fact) situation -- really you should have
>made the bracha a number of times, but you didn't, so now say just
>one bracha for all of them.

>But in our case, why is there a need to hold off? Say the beracha
>immediately, even though there is the "risk" of losing the money 

The question is, though: when the MB talks about "kamah shemu'ot"
(several news items), does he mean only if they're different types of
news ("Your wife had a baby boy, and also you've just inherited
$10,000"), or would this also apply to similar news items ("You've
inherited $10,000 from Grandpa Avraham and $5,000 from Uncle Yitzchak")?
If the latter is correct, then I would agree that the game-show
contestant should preferably recite a separate berachah for each of the
"plateau" levels, plus another one when withdrawing and keeping his or
her current earnings. (As above, I think that the "conditional" in this
case is different than the "risk" in the case of finding an object, so
even in this case one would not necessarily recite a berachah for the
intermediate levels.) However, if the MB is referring only to unrelated
news items, then presumably in our case only one berachah should be
recited, at the end of the game.

Kol tuv,


From: Douglas Moran <dougom@...>
Date: Fri, 29 Aug 2003 07:43:31 -0500
Subject: Bringing your own food on board planes

On Thu, 28 Aug 2003 07:19:19 -0400, Carl Singer <csngr@...> wrote:
>I want to indorse the above.  Consider also that even plastic knives &
>forks may cause you delay -- suggest something simple for airplane food
>-- a sandwhich, candybars, fruit, etc.  It should go without saying that
>'self-heating" meals are inappropriate for carrying on board re:
>security.  I don't know if they travel well in luggage.

Personally I find that pizza makes a good traveling food.  You can
either get frozen kosher cheese pizza easily and enhance it to your
desire (I personally like to put my homemade pesto on it, but that can
make you an unpopular traveling companion, so beware), or make your own
at home--it's not very hard at all.  Cook it, wrap it up, and bring it
along.  This has gotten me through any number of 3-4 hour hops here in
the U.S.  Plus it doesn't bug the security people.  Caveat: wrapping it
in aluminum foil can annoy the scanners, so either have it out and ready
to unwrap, or put it in a ziplock or some such.



From: Stan Tenen <meru1@...>
Date: Fri, 29 Aug 2003 08:30:51 -0400
Subject: Re: Certified non-kosher?

>From: <CARATSTONE@...>
>[snip] How can an establishment
>with T'eudat Kashrut in Jerusalem serve non-kosher product?

I can't answer with regard to Jerusalem, but there is a similar
situation in San Francisco.

Our favorite vegetarian restaurant -- the Shangri-La on Irving St.,
almost across from Tel Aviv Kosher Meats (no relationship) -- has a
hechsher letter on every table, in English, written by the pre-eminent
Orthodox rabbi in the area.  The letter makes it clear that the
fortune-cookies are to be considered dairy, and that the wine list is
not kosher.  It is common for kippah-wearing families to eat at the
Shangri-La, but I'm sure that there are probably others who might not.

All that's required, it seems, is proper notification when the
non-kosher food is separately packaged.  Bottled wine and liquor, etc.,
is separately packaged, and not mixed into anything else, so there is
really no reason why a person who keeps kosher can't just avoid it.

Be well.

PS:  Order #49, the Spicy Tofu Balls. <smile>
Meru Foundation   http://www.meru.org   <meru1@...>
POB 503, Sharon, MA 02067 USA   Voice: 781-784-8902  eFax: 253-663-9273


From: Shaya Poter <spotter@...>
Date: Thu, 28 Aug 2003 09:30:27 -0400
Subject: Re: Kosher and Halal

>>One differentiation between *Halal* and *Kosher* is that before
>> slaughter, *Halal* requires the praying to Allah. *Kosher* does not
>> require a prayer to God before slaughtering.
> Doesn't the blessing made before shechitah count as a prayer?

I believe Halal requries Allah's name being mentioned before each
individual animal.  For kashrut purposes, I believe you say the bracha
once, and then can slaughter as many animals you want in that sitting.
Hence, while the first animal would be "Halal" in general they aren't.


From: Bernard Raab <beraab@...>
Date: Fri, 29 Aug 2003 01:43:58 -0400
Subject: Milk and Meat

From: Irwin Weiss <irwin@...>

>WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration says it is
>safe to spray lactoferrin, a milk protein, on to beef carcasses to fight
>disease-causing bacteria such as E. coli O157:H7.

>Scientists with aLF Ventures, a Salt Lake City company, had found that
>spraying lactoferrin on raw beef carcasses inhibits the growth of E.
>coli, salmonella and campylobacter and prevents them from attaching to
>meat surfaces.

I would guess this would be a problem if this lactoferrin were to become
universally used. But remember that kosher slaughter is a "boutique"
operation compared to the broader market and the product is always kept
separate, so there should be little problem in keeping this treatment
from being applied. Plus, it could possibly be argued that the
requirement to wash the meat every three days until it is "kashered"
could obviate the need for such a treatment.

b'shalom--Bernie R.


From: Saul Mashbaum <smash52@...>
Date: Fri, 29 Aug 2003 15:11:16 +0300
Subject: Schechita and halal

 Ben Katz <bkatz@...> wrote:
>         An interesting tangent to this fact (and after all, what are
> conversations or discussions without tangents?)  is that Rav Kook zt'l
> was once asked by a shochet whether he could say "Allah Achbar" before
> slaughtering meat for his Moslem clients.  Rav Kook answered in the
> affirmative because Moslems are "as monotheistic" as Jews and that saying
> "God is great" in any language is not an issue.

To which Yehuda Landy responded:

>I'd really appreciate when quoting such stories to please mention the
>source or some other info which can help authenticate the story.

See  Daat Kohen, (Rav Kook's responsa on Yoreh Deah), siman 10.

Although Ben Katz's posting is essentially accurate, what emerges from a
carefull reading of the tshuva is somewhat different in some important

1) Rav Kook says repeatedly that including practices designed to make
    the shechitah acceptable to Moslems is permissible only b'dieved, in
    face of great financial loss, and should be avoided if at all

2) Rav Kook mentions several times in the tshuva that the Moslems are
    not idolaters, but the statement "Moslems are 'as monotheistic' as
    Jews" does not appear.

3) The status of Moslems as non-idolaters is cited specifically
     regarding other practices the Moslems insisted on for slaughtered
     meat they would be willing to eat, chiefly facing east (towards
     Mecca) while slaughtering, and is not mentioned when discussing
     saying "Allah Achbar".

I write this not in order to criticize Ben but
1) To set the record straight
2) As an illustration of the care readers must take in drawing halachic
    conclusions (even if not l'maaseh) from MJ postings.  The human
    inclination to rely on statements of the form "I heard that Rav Kook
    once said..." is natural and understandable, but does lead to
    pitfalls.  Yehuda's suggestion to include precise citations is
    surely ideal, and I too would encourage posters to follow it
    whenever possible. In any event, the principle of caveat emptor
    definitely applies to MJ.

Saul Mashbaum


End of Volume 40 Issue 52