Volume 43 Number 96
                    Produced: Fri Aug  6  6:41:30 EDT 2004

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

civil/not marriages in Poland
         [Art Werschulz]
Claim that Re-Naming by Immigration Bogus
Cryptic Torah
         [Eli Turkel]
Font size for Tachnun
         [Carl Singer]
"Glimpse of Stocking"
         [Bernard Raab]
Ksav Ashuris/Ivri
         [Eli Turkel]
Minchat Eliezer/Yitzchak (5)
         [Eli Turkel, <Shuanoach@...>, Ira L. Jacobson, DTnLA@aol.com,
Eliezer Wenger]
Pants and Psak
Setting alarm clocks for Shabbat
         [Joseph Ginzberg]
Touching bread before washing
         [Eli Delman]
Trying to find a Rashi
         [Neil Normand]


From: Art Werschulz <agw@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Aug 2004 09:49:19 -0400
Subject: Re: civil/not marriages in Poland


On Wed, 04 Aug 2004 14:44:22 +0100, Martin Stern <md.stern@...> wrote:

> Another reason for brothers coming from Russia and Russian Poland having
> different surnames was to avoid conscription since the firstborn was
> exempt.  Sometimes later children were registered with childless couples
> for the same reason.

Here's an example, taken from my own mishpachology (as I recall it):

My maternal grandmother's maiden name was "Persky".  However, her father
was really a Friedman.  In the Auld Sod (Russia), the Friedmans had two
sons and the Perskys had no sons.  Hence, the Perskys "adopted" the
second Friedman son, who became my mother's maternal grandfather.

Art Werschulz 
GCS/M (GAT): d? -p+ c++ l u+(-) e--- m* s n+ h f g+ w+ t++ r- y? 
Internet: <agw@...><a href="http://www.cs.columbia.edu/~agw/">WWW</a>
ATTnet:   Columbia U. (212) 939-7060, Fordham U. (212) 636-6325


From: <chips@...>
Date: Thu, 05 Aug 2004 20:16:38 -0700
Subject: Re: Claim that Re-Naming by Immigration Bogus

I have a co-worker from Laos. The immigation official cut off his last
name at 13 characters and told him to use a corruption of his first name
of "Brian".

There is also the confusion that occurred with many Vietnemese whose
firstname and lastname were switched.

My mothers family name was changed , albeit very slightly, upon arrival
to America.



From: Eli Turkel <turkel@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Aug 2004 16:59:01 +0300
Subject: Cryptic Torah

If you can appreciate all of this, you can appreciate why Leviticus
22:28 may have been transparently clear at the time it was written, and
it is only because of the passing of time that we need our oral
tradition today to tell us that the commandment applies to cows as well
as bulls.  It does not mean that the Torah is cryptic.>

I find this answer hard to understand. There are many examples where the
Torah is clearly cryptic.  Some examples:

Not to cook a goat in the milk of it's mother. Which Chazal learn is a
general prohibition of cooking/eating/having benefit of meat and milk
together. It is hard to believe that in Moshe Rabbenu's time it was
obvious that the pasuk meant this without the Oral Torah.

For the Yom kippur service the literal order of the pesukim is different
than the accepted order of the service. There is no way this can be
explained by the lack of knowledge over 35000 years (there is a
beautiful explanation due the Gaon of Vilna - if one accepts his

Perhaps the most famous is "an eye for an eye". As many have shown this
is exactly what appears literally in the code of Hammurabi. So at the of
Matan Torah it would have been easy to accept this literally. Our
problem with a literal acceptance is the change in morality over the
centuries.  In fact the Talmud spends pages trying to prove that this
should not be taken literally. The length of this discussion indicates
that it was far from obvious that the text should not be taken

kol tuv,
Eli Turkel


From: Carl Singer <casinger@...>
Date: Thu, 05 Aug 2004 20:20:27 -0400
Subject: Font size for Tachnun

I'm aware of the vagaries of font size in old (cut & paste?) siddurs --
but even in new siddurs that seem to be freshly typeset, I've noticed
that the introductory sentence (Vayomer David el Gad ....) is a smaller
font.  Does anyone have an explanation?

Carl A. Singer


From: Bernard Raab <beraab@...>
Date: Fri, 06 Aug 2004 01:31:48 -0400
Subject: "Glimpse of Stocking"

From: Leah S. Gordon:

>...Cole Porter's work, specifically including
>_Anything Goes_ (1930), he meant those lyrics with great irony.  His
>overriding message IMO in that musical is that *every* generation thinks
>that things have gone to heck and were wonderful beforehand.

>By the way, I think that both traditions have Jewish backing:
>-every generation changes (usually for the worse) vs. the olden days
>-we are all struggling, and someday people will think of *now* as olden

For all those who think that things go inexorably downhill, I am here to
say that "It ain't necessarily so." (Ira Gershwin). If you have ever
seen photos of an *orthodox* Jewish wedding from the 40's or 50's in the
U.S.A., you might be astonished at the women's dress: off-the-shoulder
completely sleeveless gowns were quite en-mode. Separate seating at the
ceremony was very uncommon, and totally unheard of at the dinner. Trust
me: many, many couples who were so married are now the proud parents of
children who are roshei yeshiva, cover their hair and/or wear black hats
full time.  Plus, I have heard it said, and I believe it to be true:
There is more torah studied today, by more people, than ever before in

b'shalom--Bernie R.


From: Eli Turkel <turkel@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Aug 2004 16:47:53 +0300
Subject: Ksav Ashuris/Ivri

<Teshuvos HaGeonim (responsum 358, quoted in full by Margolis HaYam to
Sanhedrin 21b) discusses the three opinions and rules that the correct
one is the third, which denies that Jews ever used Ksav Ivri.>

What is the validity of "psak" when it refers to a historical fact?  I
understand that if the early Torah scrolls were written in Ktav Ashuri
or Ktav Ivri has practical implications then we follow the majority of
Amoraim. However, if it is a purely historical question I don't see how
we can decide facts based on majority rule of Amoraim. Especially as
today we have much more information.

This impacts not only on the lettering of the original Torahs but also
on many other "historical" arguments in the Talmud.

kol tuv,

Eli Turkel


From: Eli Turkel <turkel@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Aug 2004 21:17:39 +0300
Subject: Minchat Eliezer/Yitzchak

> Rav Weiss zt'l (The Minchas Elazar??)

Rav Weisz write the teshuvot Michat Yitzchak.
Minchas Elizer if from the rebbe of Munkatch

Eli Turkel

From: <Shuanoach@...>
Date: Thu, 05 Aug 2004 12:39:07 -0400
Subject: Minchat Eliezer/Yitzchak

Bill Bernstein wrote: 
"Rav Weiss zt'l (The Minchas Elazar??) "

R. Yitzhak Weiss wrote the (reponsa) Minhas Yitzhak.
R. Chaim Elazar Shapiro of Munkacz (the Munkaczer Rebbe and son of the
author of Darkhei Teshuva on Yoreh De'ah) wrote the (responsa) Minchas

kol tuv

From: Ira L. Jacobson <laser@...>
Date: Thu, 05 Aug 2004 16:55:23 +0300
Subject: Re: Minchat Eliezer/Yitzchak

R' Yitzhoq Yaaqov Weiss, the Minhas Yitzhoq, of Galicia, Hungary,
England and Israel, was the head of the Eda Hareidit in Jerusalem.
Interestingly, he spent time in Munkacs from before the outbreak of WW
I, if I remember correctly.

R' Haim Elazar Shapiro, the Minhas Elozor, was the Munkacser Rov of
Munkacs, the father-in-law of the Munkacser Rov of Petah Tiqwa.  The
Minhas Elozor gave semikha to the Munkacser Rov.

IRA L. JACOBSON         

From: <DTnLA@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Aug 2004 15:40:22 EDT
Subject: Re: Minchat Eliezer/Yitzchak

You are probably referring to Dayan Yitzchok Yaakov Weiss zt"l
(1902-1989), author of the Minchas Yitzchok.

From: Eliezer Wenger <ewenger@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Aug 2004 17:33:40 -0400
Subject: Minchat Eliezer/Yitzchak

Just to clarify. Rav Yitzchok Weiss is known as the Minchos Yitzchok for
his multi volume set of responsa by that name. The Minchas Elazar was
the Munkatcher Rebbe, Rav Chaim Elazar Shapiro who lived in the first
part of the 20th century.


From: <Shuanoach@...>
Date: Thu, 05 Aug 2004 23:06:20 -0400
Subject: Re: Pants and Psak

Can someone explain to me why people are making diyyukim in a statement
of R. Sheer as if it were a teshuva of Rav Moshe Feinstein?



From: Joseph Ginzberg <jgbiz120@...>
Date: Thu, 05 Aug 2004 13:26:43 -0400
Subject: Setting alarm clocks for Shabbat

The Shmirat Shabbat H'hilchata (Rabbi Joshua Neuwirth) writes that one
is permitted to wind and set an alarm clock before shabbat, and pull out
the alarm-set button on Shabbat in order to use the clock for awakening
for davening or learning.  I presume that he is referring to a
non-electric clock. (Chapter 18/41) I have an old (5725) edition, so it
may be elsewhere in the newer revised edition.

Yossi Ginzberg


From: Eli Delman <eli.delman@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Aug 2004 10:21:13 -0400
Subject: RE: Touching bread before washing

> My recollection from SA 158 and the Mishna Brura on it is that the hands
> will only confer a 3rd degree of tumah but this is only so for trumah,
> not for chullin, which is not subject to a third-degree level of tumah.
> The MB mentions two reasons for >washing: the one so that the institution
> of kohanim washing before eating trumah not be forgotten and the
> other is strictly for cleanliness.

I did not mean to imply that any Chullin bread is becoming Tamei. The
Mishna Berura (and most others, it seems) explains the relevance of the
decree nowadays in two stages: 1) When the Temple stood, washing was
required for all Jews eating Chullin to reinforce this habit among the
Kohanim eating Terumah, where negligence would actually have a "real"
effect. 2) Even in the absence of the Temple, all Jews are to remain in
the habit of washing, so that when the Temple returns, the general
public will immediately resume their protective influence on the
Kohanim, who in turn will not be negligent in dealing with their

Perhaps I misled some people with the phrases "eating only Tahor grain
products will be a familiar routine" and "conditioning our habits for
the return of the Temple". I meant eating in a manner that would foster
consumption of Tahor Terumah by the Kohanim.

I also mentioned that I am citing only one approach to resolve the text
in Chullin 106a. The Mishna Berura follows the reasoning of Tosafos,
that the second reason of "Mitzva lishmoa" means [an enactment by the
Sages to enforce] cleanliness. All the same, we can explain that in
consideration of the plight of the person who has no water, the Sages
relaxed their "cleanliness" requirement (b), and he may eat his bread
without actually washing. But the compelling force of reason (a),
conditioning the habits of all Yisraelim for their protective effects on
the Kohanim when the Temple returns, still dictates that he must cover
his hands and not touch the bread.



From: Neil Normand <nachmanyak@...>
Date: Thu, 5 Aug 2004 11:23:00 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Trying to find a Rashi

I vaguely recall reading a printed shiur by the Rav, zt"l, about Korach
where he quoted a Rashi that speaks about two types of Kedushat Yisrael,
a general Kedushat Yisrael that applies equally to all Jews, and a
second type of Kesdusha that varies, depending on the level of each
individual.  Can anyone tell me where this Rashi is found?


[A couple of notes: The "printed" version was not by the Rav
(R. Soloveichik), but by someone who adapted his oral shiur to
writting. There are at least two written versions of the "Rebellion of
Korach" shiur that I have read, neither comes anywhere near the actual
oral version, which I think is one of the best tapes of the Rav I have
listened to. The pasuk and Rashi is in Devarim, without the Rav's
comments you would not interpret the Rashi anywhere near what the Rav
uses it for. The pasuk is something like: Ki am kadosh ata l'hashem
elokecha, u'becha bochar hashem lehios lo l'am segula. Hopefully,
someone other member of the group will respond with the correct
citation. Avi]


End of Volume 43 Issue 96