Volume 41 Number 04
                 Produced: Mon Nov  3  5:06:05 US/Eastern 2003

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Aleinu backwards
         [Joshua Meisner]
Avel on Simchat Torah
         [Michael Kahn]
Clothing (3)
         [Leah S. Gordon, Yisrael Medad, Frank Silbermann]
Gas Clock for Shabbat? (6)
         [Harold Greenberg, Perry Zamek, Yisrael and Batya Medad, Sam
Gamoran, Naomi Kingsley, Leah Aharoni]
Size of Rallies in Israel
         [Mishpachat Freedenberg]
Substandard English
         [Carl Singer]
"Tam U-mu'ad"
         [Joshua Meisner]
Text of Morning Brachot
         [Meir Possenheimer]
Wine touched by a non-Shabbat Observer
         [Barak Greenfield]


From: Joshua Meisner <jam390@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Oct 2003 18:08:18 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Aleinu backwards

Yehonatan Chipman wrote:

> A funeral conducted by the "Adat Hasidim" in Jerusalem included, at one
> point, shouting out the names of the twelve tribes while walking around
> the coffin, "Reuven Shimon Levi Yehudah...", and the seven Canananite
> nations, also several times, "he-hiti he-kenizi he-perizi..." etc.

	My guess is that this would be based on the funeral of Yaakov
Avinu, in which the 12 shevatim (with Efrayim and Menashe subbing in for
Levi and Yosef, actually) carried the bier, and in which even the 7
nations of Canaan participated; I believe that Rashi on Genesis 50:11
quotes a medrash which says that the kings of Canaan all placed their
crowns on top of Yaakov's bier as a sign of honor.

- Josh


From: Michael Kahn <mi_kahn@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Oct 2003 23:59:53 -0500
Subject: Re: Avel on Simchat Torah

>The custom is that aveilim do not participate in ...the hakafos on
> Simchas Torah.

My father, unfortunately, is an avel and sat on the side during this
year's hakafos. Since it's not my father's main shulle both the Rov and
the shulle's president were unaware of this. I was impressed that they
both came over to him and asked him if he had had a hakafa.

We talk about problems in our shulle's. I thought I'd write a nice


From: Leah S. Gordon <leah@...>
Date: Sun, 26 Oct 2003 14:59:53 -0800
Subject: Clothing

Batya writes:

>difficult things were.  Don't put people down.  In general people do the
>best they can, taking things into account that you'd never, and need
>never, know of.  This generation you're criticizing preserved Torah
>Judaism, and they developed the Orthodox communities, schools, mikvaot

I believe that you have misunderstood what I wrote, and have therefore
made some unfortunate assumptions and statements.  Did you think that I
was criticizing anyone?  No.  Rather, I was saying that if so many women
wore the shorter skirt lengths, perhaps it was and is "ok" to do so.  My
thesis statement is that if they had really wanted/needed to make/wear
something else, they would have.

Leah S. R. Gordon

From: Yisrael Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Sun, 26 Oct 2003 20:00:18 +0200
Subject: Clothing

As for clothing customs, if I can make a contribution,
I recall in the very late 50s spending summers at Rockaway, NY
and the next door neighbors to my Aunt and Uncle were
a frum family with 4-5 family units together (several sisters and brothers
and their broods).  One son was quite Charedi, the rest YU and slightly right.
Almost all the sisters spent time on the beach in bathing suits in mixed
company.   Knees weren't even in the equation but high thighs.

Yisrael Medad

From: Frank Silbermann <fs@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Oct 2003 06:37:16 -0600 (CST)
Subject:  Clothing

About non-long skirts in the 1960s (from V40 N92):

> Again, please, if you weren't there, you have no idea how inflexible and
> difficult things were.  Don't put people down.  In general people do the
> best they can, taking things into account that you'd never, and need
> never, know of.  This generation you're criticizing preserved Torah
> Judaism, and they developed the Orthodox communities, schools, mikvaot
> you enjoy today.

I would add that besides the tremendous peer pressure to keep up with
fashion, there was virtually no counter peer pressure in the 1960s to
dress according to the Shulchan Aruch.  Before criticizing people's
vulnerability to peer pressure, one should consider that without peer
pressure and our vulnerability to it many of today's popular chumrot
wouldn't be kept.

Frank Silbermann
New Orleans, Louisiana


From: Harold Greenberg <harold.greenberg@...>
Date: Wed, 29 Oct 2003 06:18:03 +0200
Subject: Gas Clock for Shabbat?

Aliza Berger  wrote:
>Passing near Meah Shearim on the bus, I noticed a sign in a store
>window advertising a 'sha-on gaz,' which I can only think of
>translating as 'gas clock' or 'gas watch.' It's apparently something
>for shabbat, and has 'approval of great rabbis' (again according to the
>sign). Anyone know what this is? Some kind of timer for the gas stove?
>But in Israel, almost everyone uses an electric 'plata' (hot plate).

We use one of these in Israel.  It is for use on Chag - holidays which
fall on a weekday when it is permitted to cook.  The mechanical timer is
attached to one of the dials.  When I want to cook something for, say,
10 minutes I set the timer for 10 minutes.  Then I light the gas stove
by transferring fire from a candle.  The timer turns the gas off after
10 minutes.

We are Israelis who use a hot plate during the summer and the gas stove
during the winter.

Eilat, Israel

From: Perry Zamek <perryza@...>
Date: Wed, 29 Oct 2003 08:59:03 +0200
Subject: Re: Gas Clock for Shabbat?

Tzomet designed/approved/markets (?) a system for turning OFF the gas
after a specified time, for use on Yom Tov only. I don't know the
details, but it works on the principle of "gram kibui" [indirect
extinguishing - doing an act now that will ultimately cause the flame to
be extinguished] - you set the time (mechanical timer), and light the
gas - after the set time, the timer causes the gas flow to shut off,
thereby extinguishing the flame. I'm not an expert on Hilchot Shabbat
and Yom Tov, but I understand that "gram kibui" is permitted on yom tov
(regular extinguishing is, of course, not permitted), but not on

Best wishes
Perry Zamek

From: Yisrael and Batya Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Wed, 29 Oct 2003 05:55:42 +0200
Subject: Re: Gas Clock for Shabbat?

I understand that it's more for holidays, or Friday night, when you don't
need it for all of Shabbat.  Also during the week, if you want to leave
something cooking for a short time and are going out.  It makes the gas
go off safely by pre-timing.


From: Sam Gamoran <Sgamoran@...>
Subject: RE: Gas Clock for Shabbat?

Presumably it's an electric timer to turn off a gas flame.

We have such a beast that a previous tenant left behind in my son's
house.  It consists of an electrically operated gas valve connected to a

We've never used it because our (gas) oven has a built-in timer that we
use to put it out after Friday night dinner and for Shabbat morning we
use a electric 'plata' (or eat a 'cold' meal in the hot summer months).

From: Naomi Kingsley <rogerk@...>
Date: Wed, 29 Oct 2003 09:08:11 +0200
Subject: Re: Gas Clock for Shabbat?

Yes, it's a mechanical [clockwork] timer which will turn off the gas
supply to the stove at a preset time.  Not everyone uses an electric hot
plate.  The gas timer can also be used on yomtov, to turn the gas off
after you have finished cooking supper.

Naomi Kingsley

From: Leah Aharoni <leah25@...>
Date: Wed, 29 Oct 2003 11:52:36 +0200
Subject: Gas Clock for Shabbat?

The clock is used for Yom Tov when it's permissible to kindle fire and
cook, but forbidden to extinguish the fire. Obviously, it cannot be used
on Shabbat, since putting anything on a direct flame is bishul

It works in a way similar to an electric timer, opening and closing the
gas valve at preset times.  There are a few brands on the market. If I
am not mistaken the first one was Hag-gaz, developed by Rav Rozen's
Machon Tzomet.

Leah Aharoni
English/Hebrew/Russian Translator
Telefax 972-2-9971146, Mobile 972-56-852571
Email <leah25@...>


From: Mishpachat Freedenberg <free@...>
Date: Wed, 29 Oct 2003 15:16:20 +0200
Subject: RE: Size of Rallies in Israel

>  You have to take all these estimates with a grain of salt, since the
>  source of the estimate is usually the organizers of the demonstration
>  who have an interest in inflating the number of participants.  The
>  first really massive Israeli political demonstration was the one that
>  demanded an official investigation of Sabra and Shatila.  It was held
>  at then Kikar Malkei Yisrael (now Kikar Rabin) in Tel Aviv and
>  estimated at 250,000 to 400,000.  I doubt if any demonstration in
>  Jerusalem has ever reached those numbers.

There is one gathering that exceeded those numbers quite handily. There
was a huge prayer gathering several years ago in Yerushalayim in protest
of the way the Baga"tz [Israeli supreme court] was acting. It was a
chareidi prayer gathering and there were more than 600,000 men and women
in attendance by all estimates.



From: Carl Singer <casinger@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Oct 2003 13:24:02 -0500
Subject: Re: Substandard English

Gil Student wrote:
>If you are learning English for the first time as an adult then you
>will follow all the rules as set down in textbooks and as taught by
>teachers.  If you grow up with English as your first language then you
>will use it as you hear it in the street and from your friends.  Does
>this include colloquialisms and incorrect usages?  Yes.  Why should
>Jews speak a different language than other Americans?  I speak with my
>Gentile neighbors in Brooklyn and their English ain't so good neither.

I presume that those under a certain age do go to school and that the
schools that they attend are required by law to pay some level of lip
service to an English language curriculum. If someone wants to speak
substandard English, for whatever reason, that's their right.  However,
I grew up with many people who spoke heavily accented, but gramatically
correct English because this was important to them.

Similarly, it's my right not to hire a poor speaker into a position
where use of language makes a difference.  I would rather select someone
whose second language is English but who is making a good effort at
learning proper English than a native English speaker who does not speak

The Jewish community certainly needs more people without the training
and / or language skills to work in the larger general business

Carl Singer


From: Joshua Meisner <jam390@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Oct 2003 13:43:26 -0500 (EST)
Subject: "Tam U-mu'ad"

	Some years back, a rebbe of mine in high school mentioned a book
called "Tam U-mu'ad".  I believe that it is also known by the
considerably less obscure title "Toldot Yeshu" (Biography of Jesus).
The title page of the edition that I found contains the words "Tam
U'mu'ad", the notation 'Nidpas BR"Ch' (which I took to mean "published
on Rosh Chodesh"), and a passuk taken from the section of the Torah
describing a false prophet with several letters in a large font to
indicate the year published (IIRC, the year indicated was ~1783).  The
author's name is not mentioned.
	Can anyone provide information on the origins of this book?
Additionally, is it at all based on fact or is it just a historical

- Josh


From: Meir Possenheimer <meir@...>
Date: Wed, 29 Oct 2003 09:32:52 -0000
Subject: Re: Text of Morning Brachot

> In a similar vein, are there sources for permitting a woman to use
> "modah" instead of "modeh" in certain prayers (Modeh ani........

According to the Roedelheim Sfas Emes Siddur - probably the most widely
used Siddur in the Orthodox communities of pre-war Germany - women
should say Modah Ani.


From: Barak Greenfield <DocBJG@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Oct 2003 22:47:16 -0500
Subject: RE: Wine touched by a non-Shabbat Observer

> From: Robert J. Tolchin <tolchin@...>
> Assuming I have wine that is not mevushal, and I am shomer Shabbat. I
> pour the bottle and serve it to my guests. One of my guests is not
> shomer Shabbat. Once he picks up his glass to drink, the wine--which was
> perfectly kosher until he touched the glass--now becomes unfit. He
> drinks it. Have I done anything wrong along the lines of causing him to
> eat treif? Remember, what I gave him was perfectly kosher, and he's the
> one who "traifed it up."

Igros Moshe OC 5:37(8) permits this, on the basis that the restriction
against drinking wine touched by a non-observant Jew is merely a minhag,
and therefore need not be extended this far.


End of Volume 41 Issue 4