Volume 41 Number 37
                 Produced: Sun Dec 14 14:37:19 US/Eastern 2003

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Bad Manners
         [Heshy Zaback]
Double names
         [Leah Aharoni]
Good Manners (3)
         [Carl Singer, Eli Wise, <ERSherer@...>]
Good Manners, Techelet
         [Matan Shole]
Insulting Non-Jews in front of Gerim (2)
         [Gershon Dubin, Alex Heppenheimer]
Religiosity and the Holocaust
         [Batya Medad]
Reproving a respected Rabbi
Standing at Vayivarech/Tzedaka
         [Joel Rich]
Standing for bride and groom
Tal u'Mattar
         [Martin Stern]


From: Heshy Zaback <heshyzaback2@...>
Date: Tue, 02 Dec 2003 22:44:17 -0500
Subject: Bad Manners

from m-j V41 #33
<<<   >I think you have a Torah obligation to do it, because the Torah says 
"You shall surely reprove him".<
1. When is one obliged to rebuke someone for bad manners? (How much trouble 
do you need to take?)
2. Are we worried about putting a stumbling block in front of the blind? 
(They might end up being even ruder when you rebuke them.)
3. When children are ill-mannered, is one obliged to rebuke their parents 
for how badly they are fulfilling the mitzva of chinuch? (maybe I shouldn't 
say this, but I really really want to do that rebuking sometimes...)>>>

There is no mitzvah of hocheiach tochiach when you know the rebuke will
not be taken. It's highly unlikely that a bochur you stop in the street
or a parent you don't know will be receptive to your admonishments, and
therefore you have no obligation to say anything.


From: Leah Aharoni <leah25@...>
Date: Thu, 04 Dec 2003 15:56:54 +0200
Subject: Double names

The practice of giving children double names seems to be a relatively
recent one. I can't think of anyone with a double names in the Tanakh,
Gemara, or among the Rishonim.

Any ideas as to the origins of Jewish double names?

Leah Aharoni


From: Carl Singer <casinger@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Dec 2003 08:10:23 -0500
Subject: Good Manners

Yes, the rove [majority - Mod.] is well mannered -- and we seldom state
as much because it is the norm.

But communal society needs a backbone and should have an halachic way to
deal with folks whose behavior is disruptive.  Sometimes it's simple
one-time acts such as a person who does not reply courteously to a
greeting or a "Good Shabbos", a person who double parks and blocks the
street, a person who cuts in line.  And sometimes it's a pattern -- the
person who's always seeking an "angle" be it in business transactions or
in other dealings.

Why should society - frum society - silently tolerate behavior that is
not nice?

Carl Singer

From: Eli Wise <ewise@...>
Date: Thu, 4 Dec 2003 10:10:09 -0500
Subject: Good Manners

I think that people confuse insulting learned people with be annoyed
with a lack of bey adam lechaveiro. A Talmid Chocham is not merely
someone who has mastered texts. If that was true then why do Chazal
emphasize treatment of the text person? What does the teaching of Hillel
to the person on one foot mean. The Maharsha on that gemara teaches that
regel does not mean foot but rather a principle. The questioner was a
philosopher and asked on what overall principle does Torah rest. Hillel
answered to not do to others what you don't want done to you and the
rest is commentary. The Good Manners we seek should be interwoven with
one who is proficient in texts. The gemara in Yoma says that much Torah
was learned during bayis sheni yet there was excessive hatred. In the
story of Kamza Bar Kamza the leadership allowed the man to be publicly
humiliated without protest. People who learn should not only be
knowledgeable of these things they should be examples to others. If they
do not show good manners, or have selective compassion then they are not
the whole picture.

Eliezer Wise

From: <ERSherer@...>
Date: Wed, 3 Dec 2003 10:48:56 EST
Subject: Re: Good Manners

<<  Are we worried about putting a stumbling block in front of the blind? 
 (They might end up being even ruder when you rebuke them)  >>

    I don't think that qualifies as a stumbling block. 


From: Matan Shole <thinkoncemore@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Dec 2003 20:53:28 +0000
Subject: Good Manners, Techelet

Re: v41i33 - Good Manners
<it is indeed sad and painful and hardly fair to the hundreds and
hundreds of bochurim and yungerleit who are doing it the way
it has been done for centuries.>

Since the point was raised, we should here just remind people that this
is not how things were "done for centuries."  Even in Volozhin students
learned there for some years but normally finished their studies in
their early 20s.  Afterwards, they usually found jobs such as rabbis of
communities or other Jewish professions.  When Rav Aharon Kotler built
his Yeshiva in Lakewood he was clear that newlyweds would learn for a
couple of years - 3 or 4 maybe - and then pursue some means of income,
not fall on the Yeshiva for support. That people would learn for their
whole lives (or even for 10 years after marriage) and expect to support
their family by Hashem's grace (in the hands of the local Yeshiva or
tzedaka or government socieal welfare program) is mythical.  Rambam
[Hil.  Talmud Torah Ch. 3, and in Peirush Hamishnayos in Avos(???)] is
QUITE disparaging of such lifestyles.  Besides, all Jewish men commit in
their kesuba to support their wives, not be supported by them.

Re: v41i31 - Techelet
< 1) ... would prove that the metric system is in some sense a halachically
preferred system of measurement ... 2) The metric system is not a
completely arbitrary system. The meter was originally defined as (and is
still very close to) one ten-millionth of the distance from the North Pole
to the equator... >

Point (1) Follows from our acceptance of the premise.  It is not a proof
for it.  Point (2) is faulty as our division of entities (such as time)
into units of 10 is found nowhere in halacha.  Instead, halaha divides
time into periods of 7, 12/24, 60, 49/50, etc.  Not 10, 100... or
1000000.  Additionally, the distance from the North Pole to the equator
seems pretty arbitrary to me.


From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@...>
Date: Wed, 3 Dec 2003 14:03:29 GMT
Subject: Insulting Non-Jews in front of Gerim

Your question about not insulting nonJews in front of a ger is mentioned
by Rashi on the pasuk in Yisro, Vayichad Yisro. Here is the quote from
the English Metzudah chumash:

"And Yisro rejoiced." That is its plain meaning.37 However, there is a
Midrash Aggadah: His flesh felt sharp stinging sensations.He was grieved
by the destruction of Egypt. This is what is meant when people say: "A
proselyte even up to ten generations [later]--- do not disparage an
Aramean (non-Jew) in his presence."


From: Alex Heppenheimer <aheppenh@...>
Date: Wed, 3 Dec 2003 09:25:29 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Re: Insulting Non-Jews in front of Gerim

In MJ 41:32, Noah Paulovic <npaulovic@...> asked:

> I'm a little embarassed by the source of my question, based on
> something in Gemara; a note in "the Artscroll". I had seen maybe two
> years ago, I believe in Kiddushin, a note to the affect that it is
> assur to insult non-Jews in front of a Ger, and this applies as far
> as to the Grandchild of a Ger.

The source of this is a Gemara in Sanhedrin (94a), and the expression
there is actually that this applies down to the tenth generation. (The
context is that Yisro felt bad hearing that the Egyptians had been
drowned, even though he was a Ger - and furthermore, had long ago fled
from Egypt when his advice to treat the Jews well was rejected - so one
might have expected that he wouldn't have felt any sympathy for them;
since we see that he did, that establishes a precedent that such
sympathies may be long-lasting.)

That said, I don't know if this is actually cited as halachah anywhere
(by contrast with statements such as "you used to worship idols," which
is cited as a violation of the mitzvah not to wrong a Ger verbally), and
even the Gemara itself seems to be citing it as a popular expression
(albeit one that it approves of) rather than a halachic statement.

By the way, my personal opinion, for what it's worth, is that there's
nothing to be embarrassed about in asking a question based on something
you found in Artscroll's notes, or other secondary (or tertiary)
sources. I often find that their references point me to sefarim or
commentaries that I might not have discovered (or been able to find) on
my own, even though I might be perfectly capable of learning them in the

Kol tuv,


From: Batya Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Dec 2003 06:37:08 +0200
Subject: Re: Religiosity and the Holocaust

      Many of the weaknesses in our family and social structures still
      come from the losses we suffered in the holocaust. Parental role

Sorry, bus historically, you're wrong.  The percentage of Jews who
escaped to America, New Zealand etc, long before the holocaust, who
abandoned Torah observance is very, very high.  Many weren't only
escaping the poverty in Euroope; they were escaping Judaism.  Even when
the immigrants themselves continued to be frum, it was common that none
of their children were.  Their aim was to fit in as Americans.  I once
asked my mother why she, 8th of of 9 kids, didn't stay religious, and
she answered that she "wasn't expected to."  It was taken for granted
that the children wouldn't be religious.  Religion was for the old

Much of the yiddishkeit in the shtettels was "social" conforming to
society, not internal.  Unfortunately, I see a similar situation in the
religious communities in Israel.  Too many of us trust society's norms
to guarantee our children's religiosity.



From: Anonymous
Date: Thu, 04 Dec 2003 15:31:46
Subject: Reproving a respected Rabbi

What is the proper way to "reprove" a respected and educated rabbi who
is not very careful about certain mitzvahs between people.  In the
specific case in mind, this rabbi often confides in me negative things
about fellow congregants and donors that I really have no business or
benefit knowing.  Any suggestions on this difficult mitzvah would be


From: <Joelirich@...> (Joel Rich)
Date: Thu, 4 Dec 2003 08:21:38 EST
Subject: Standing at Vayivarech/Tzedaka

      Rav Yaakov Kamenecki disagrees.  He suggested that the reason for
      standing at "vyvarech David"-standing for the people who gave
      tzedaka at that point, and he personally stood (although he was
      not physically able to dance) while dancing for choson and kallah
      was taking place, citing this as the reason.  Not sure if he had
      other applications for this principle as well.

      Gershon ; <gershon.dubin@...>

Interesting thought-the original minhag was to give tzedakah before
tfillah and it was the ari z"l who started giving it in the middle of
vayevarech(note-he did it when the kahal was at that point).  So did
they not stand until that point in history and only in communities that
adopted that practice?  Also has anyone seen a written source for giving
during chazarat hashatz?  Both these practices can contribute to lack of
kavanah if not careful.

Joel Rich

PS An interesting sociological note - based on an anecdotal survey-the
number of people who give tzedaka at vayivarech has increased
exponentially since it was mentioned(without comment as to the source)
in the Artscroll Siddur footnote- Question-does one have the right as an
individual(or community) to change the established minhag on such


From: <rubin20@...>
Date: Wed, 3 Dec 2003 18:21:08 -0500
Subject: Re: Standing for bride and groom

>From: Elazar M Teitz <remt@...>
>         I've heard two ex post facto explanations for standing,
> neither of which seem logical. (1) Choson domeh l'melech (a groom is
> compared to a king).  However, this is not true until after the
> chuppah, not on the way to it, when he is halachically not yet a
> choson.  (2) The Mishnah relates that the craftsmen of Yerushalayim
> stood for those who came bearing bikkurim (first-fruit offering),
> because of the mitzvah they were about to perform.  This reason would
> only apply to the choson, since only he has the obligation to marry;
> but has anyone seen people in shul stand for those who come in after
> them, because they are about to fulfill the mitzvos of tallis and
> t'fillin? Obviously, the standing for bikkurim bringers was not
> extended to mitzvos in general.

Since Rav Yaackov Kamenestky used to say over the second explanation, it
seems worthy of consideration. It would seem, that just as Bikkurim is
done once in a rare while (yearly) so too is getting married, unlike
tallis, which is why we only stand for them.


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Thu, 04 Dec 2003 12:50:12 +0000
Subject: Re: Tal u'Mattar

on 4/12/03 12:18 pm, Jack Gross <ibijbgross@...> wrote:
> I recall seeing a not-so-old Eastern European siddur, perhaps from the
> 1880's, whose instructions to start saying Sheilat Matar on November 22
> included: "V'simancha: *B'cha* Y'varech Yisrael Leimor'" (Beit + Kaff =
> 22)

Probably this siddur was published in Russia which used the Julian
calendar until 1917.

Martin Stern

[Same reply recieved from ben katz <bkatz@...>. Mod.]


End of Volume 41 Issue 37