Volume 40 Number 91
                 Produced: Fri Oct 17 11:11:20 US/Eastern 2003

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Alenu backwards
         [Shayna Kravetz]
Backwards and forwards 7 times
         [Joshua Hosseinof]
Children and Hakhel
         [Yisrael Medad]
Children in resteraunts
         [Chaim Shapiro]
Children in Shul (7)
         [Batya Medad, Rachel Swirsky, Elozor Reich, Shani Thon, Batya
Medad, Michael Kahn, Rachel Swirsky]
Forwards and Backwords
         [Michael Kahn]
Kissing Children in Shul
         [Zev Sero]
Noisy Kids, Noisier Parents
         [Bernard Raab]
Ribis and Inflation in Halacha
         [Levy Lieberman]


From: Shayna Kravetz <skravetz@...>
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 09:06:11 -0400
Subject: Re: Alenu backwards

Irwin Weiss reports an extremely surprising minhag and then adds:
>The only prayer I could think of that we say forwards and backwards is
>the verse from Birkat Halvana.

In some versions of T'filat Ha-derech that I have seen, one works
through various permutations of the phrase "Qiviti li-y'shuatcha
ha-shem".  This is perhaps another instance of this.

Mo'adim le-simkhah.


From: Joshua Hosseinof <jh@...>
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 22:47:12 -0400
Subject: Backwards and forwards 7 times

I don't have an answer for the reason why it is said seven times
backwards and forwards other than the fact that it is a kabbalistic
segulah (said for good luck).  Another example of this is the Tefilah al
haparnasah (prayer for wealth) that is said by Sephardim and Yemenites
on Rosh Hashannah and Yom Kippur.  At the end of it, in some versions,
we say the pasuk, "Vayehi Hashem et Yosef, Vayehi Ish Matzliach, Vayehi
Bevait Adonav ha-Mitzri."  seven times forwards and backwards.


From: Yisrael Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Tue, 14 Oct 2003 23:23:32 +0200
Subject: Children and Hakhel

Joshua Adam Meisner wrote:
      the Torah felt it important for children to be exposed to the
      experience of Hak'heil from a very early age.

so much so that the steps on the southern and main approach to the
Temple Mount were built in such a way as to make the ascent even easier
for children - one step up, two steps across.  The first Mishna of
Chagiga makes clear - not in connection with Hakhel, - a "child (katan)"
who is absolved from performing the Mitzva of Re'i'ah (seeing and being
seen) is one, according to Hillel, who cannot hold on to his father's
hand and walk from Yerushalyaim to the Temple Mount for the Hebrew word
for pilgrimage is "regel" and that indicates an ability to actually walk
up the steps. Shammai, by the way, defines a "child" as one who can't
even sit on his father's shoulders.

Incidentally, the Braitha in Chagiga 3:1 indicates that the reason for
bringing children to the Hakhel ceremony is to provide reward for the
parents, not intrinsically for themselves.

Yisrael Medad


From: <Dagoobster@...> (Chaim Shapiro)
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 13:42:29 EDT
Subject: Children in resteraunts

While I feel strongly that children who do not behave must be taken out
of shul, immediately, without exception to the time and place in
davening, I would like to bring up a corollary point.  I am not one to
regular fine dining establishments; most of my resteraunt experinces are
in slop shops.  Be that as it may, I still believe it is highly
inappropriate for parents to allow their children to run amock simply
because the food establishment has no stars by its name.

I have seen it all, including children, in full view of their parents,
running up and down the length of a restaurant, touching and spitting at
people's food!  And although that case is an extreme, I can hardly
recall a restaurant experience in which there wasn't at least one
screaming, misbehaving or rude child disturbing the patrons.

I am afraid that has reached the point that I am embarrassed, on pain of
Chilul Hashem, to bring my Non Frum friends into kosher restaurants for
fear that wild, out of control children will taint their view of the
Orthodox family.

I am a big believer in the free market.  If restaurants thought it bad
for their bottom line to have children behave as such, they would ask
them to leave.  Conversely, the fact that they don't, proves that these
stores feel the business of these parents and their children is integral
to their success.  But I have to wonder, where did we lose the
perspective as a social group, that as much as we love and value
children, people would like to eat without screaming, wailing, running
around, fighting and spitting as part of our dinning experience?

Chaim Shapiro


From: Batya Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Tue, 14 Oct 2003 17:17:35 +0200
Subject: Re: Children in Shul

      the Jewish community may think of childhood education.  My wife
      and I are blessed to belong to a synagogue which had approximately
      five educational activities for children of different ages during
      the Yamim Noraim (there are similar but fewer activities on a
      regular Shabbat).  The activities were for kids of all ages with
      age-appropriate activities.

That's wonderful and should be part of a synagogue budget. 

Here in Israel, we're lucky to cover the cost of electricity and water,
and the only one getting a salary is the cleaner.  When we first came to
Shiloh most of the families had only pre-schoolers and there was a rota
system in the day care center to watch the kids.  After a few years many
families had children old enough to keep there's eyes on a younger
sibling, with parents close enough to call, but too young to spend the
day in shul.  So now we're a four generation community, and
child-minding is no longer communal.


From: <swirskyr@...> (Rachel Swirsky)
Date: Tue, 14 Oct 2003 10:03:43 -0400
Subject: RE: Children in Shul

Kenneth G Miller wrote
>I suspect that Ms. Swirsky has misunderstood certain people's position. I
>don't know of anyone who feels that children should be barred from the
>shul until they have already learned how to behave. I agree that teaching
>them how to behave in shul is something which can't possibly be taught
>anywhere other than in the shul itself

I presume after reading the most recent issue you see which people think
children should be barred from children altogether.  I firmly believe
that children need to be held in check in the sanctuary (as well as in
other places for that matter be it the shul or the park,) there are
always standards for behaviour that need to be learned and met.

Aharon Fischma wrote
>Have you ever had that sweet face smiling
>at you and tried to ignore it because you are trying to have kavana?

Now people who are too cute can not come to shul?  What sort of nonsense
is that?

From: Elozor Reich <countrywide@...>
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 2003 11:25:59 +0100
Subject: Children in Shul

I am a little surprised that none of the numerous postings refer to the
views of the earlier Poskim on this topic.

See, for example, the views of the Shela (17th Century) quoted in Mishnah
Brurah 98:3.


From: Shani Thon <shani716@...>
Date: Tue, 14 Oct 2003 13:56:40 +0200
Subject: Children in Shul

   If children are taught how to behave properly in shul, the lessons
will be carried throughout their lives. Instruction needs to begin at
home: shul is exciting and should be presented that way---"you want to go
to shul, this is what we do in shul and this is what you have to do. If
not, you can't come". Even  tots can be taught to wait patiently for
Shema, the Torah to appear, Adon Olam, etc. If given a siddur, a 3 year
old can "count how many alephs there are in this sentence"and how many
pages til Shema. If proper respect for the shul is explained at home, I
have found that children manage very nicely to comply, but if the reason
they come is to run through the halls and scream, then the parents need
to provide some instruction and discipline. Of course, if talking in shul
is why the parent comes to shul, there is a more involved  problem! Maybe
if that parent talked more to his child, explaining the service etc,
there wouldn't be so many adults talking to each other.

   The problem is that most children do come to shul for other reasons,
there being NO positive expectations of them. Whatever happened to the
concept of "inside" and "outside" behavior ie: walking when
inside---running for outside, "inside voices" for inside---screaming for
outside? What is most disconcerting are the children who run to their
parent during Shmonei Esrei and force the parent to respond to them by
increasing levels of screaming. That is a clear indication that at home
when that parent davens, the child has not been taught not to interrupt
and why, (there are obviously occasional emergencies which require
immediate attention), but obviously there are parents who fail to teach
basic skills. My children were expected to sit and "daven", at their own
level, from an early age, but one misbehavior resulted in staying home
the next Shabbat. Consequently my daughter once spent a Shabbat at home,
BEGGING the entire previous week to be able to go.

    The other problem is that of communities with an eruv. Where we lived
there was no eruv and children did not go to shul until they could
walk---another block each week, until they could do the entire walk, and
how proud they were when they could. This also taught them about an eruv
and its importance for Shabbat, which even in Israel many people simply
have no idea what is allowed when an eruv is "down". How many kids now
know about not being able to carry without an eruv? The responsibility
lies with parents to teach a child the path he should go, it's a shame
there are those who cannot accept that responsibility.

   Moadim l'Simchah,
    Shani Thon

From: Batya Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Tue, 14 Oct 2003 17:09:14 +0200
Subject: Re: Children in Shul

      immediately.  (I wonder, actually, if babies are really included
      in that prohibition, at least fully breast-fed ones.  Their feces
      is not

They are of a different halachik status.  I think the addition of wheat
products changes it.  If I find out that I'm mistaken, I'll write a
correction.  All artificial (non-human) milk causes having a baby around
dovening problematic.  I remember that the person who taught me this
said that it includes dovening and "learning" at home.


From: Michael Kahn <mi_kahn@...>
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 11:12:17 -0400
Subject: Re: Children in Shul

>Full training will NEVER happen unless we continually thrust them into
>a situation where they are expected to behave properly, knowing that
>they won't be able to do it, but hoping that they'll get a bit better
>each time.

Thrusting a child into a situation in which we know "they won't be able
to do it" regardless of what the 'it' is a terrible thing. You are
torturing the poor kid. In life, as adults, we all know that the key to
success is not biting off more than you can chew. The same applies to
children, if not more so!

From: <swirskyr@...> (Rachel Swirsky)
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 10:03:11 -0400
Subject: Children in Shul

Carl Singer writes

> To rephrase an old rejoinder -- would you tolerate this same behavior in
> theatre or an elegant restaurant?

No.  but there is no halahos about watching theatre in a minyan. 

Rachel Swirsky


From: Michael Kahn <mi_kahn@...>
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 11:10:51 -0400
Subject: Re: Forwards and Backwords

>The only prayer I could think of that we say forwards and backwards is
>the verse from Birkat Halvana.

Which verse is that?


From: Zev Sero <zsero@...>
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 11:32:33 -0400
Subject: Re: Kissing Children in Shul

> Check Hilchot T'fila, Par. 98 in the Mishna Brura and you'll find in the
> notes of R. Moshe Isrelish the above statement and bases himself on the
> Magen Avraham

The Rema quotes the Magen Avraham?


From: Bernard Raab <beraab@...>
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 2003 14:32:40 -0400
Subject: Re: Noisy Kids, Noisier Parents

A few observations from long experience:

Thank Gd we now have shuls that welcome kids and provide groups,
etc. for them. It was not always thus and several generations of Jews
were lost to assimilation as a result.

The noise problem is, as several have already noted, almost always an
adult problem, not a kid problem. Adults who are constantly engaged in
idle conversation in shul will almost always have unruly children.
(There are exceptions, thank Gd. I usually look to the mother for an
explanation, and usually find it there.)

There have been some tough calls. For a few years I sat in front of a
young doctor who davened with great kavonoh. Then his daughter started
to come to shul with him--she might have been 5 years old. From that
point on, things changed for both of us. He instructed her constantly
and continuously on shul procedure, the prayers, the singing, the
philosophy, etc. She was amazingly attentive, asked questions, and
seemed to absorb much of what he was saying. Needless to say, my kavonoh
was pretty much destroyed. I didn't wish to change my seat which I had
been occupying for many years. Nor did I wish to silence him. I admired
both him and his daughter, was amazed at his his patience and
persistence, but I was annoyed beyond belief.  What would you have done?

I will save the resolution of the story for a future posting, if there
is interest in this dilemma.

Gmar chatima tova--Bernie R.


From: Levy Lieberman <kushint@...>
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2003 13:07:36 -0400
Subject: Ribis and Inflation in Halacha


I found this link on the jlaw.com website. It's an in depth study on
this issue



End of Volume 40 Issue 91