Volume 45 Number 49
                    Produced: Sun Nov  7 14:47:50 EST 2004

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Aliyot origins
         [Andrew Marks]
Alzheimer's / Halacha
         [Shmuel Carit]
Biblical personality
         [Brandon Raff]
clop for "U'lchaparat Pasha"
         [Shimon Lebowitz]
         [Yisrael Dubitsky]
Kabbalat Shabbat (2)
         [Martin Stern, Martin Stern]
         [Joel Rich]
Lecha Dodi
Mirrors and Tefillin
         [Mark H. Goldenberg]
         [Batya Medad]
Names for HaShem
         [David Curwin]
Names of HaShem
         [Tzi Briks]
Question on Parshat Vayera
         [Harry Schick]
Sarah in Hevron
         [Shlomo Spiro]
         [Batya Medad]


From: Andrew Marks <machmir@...>
Date: Wed, 3 Nov 2004 11:00:22 -0500
Subject: Re: Aliyot origins

The Vilna Gaon has a different set of alliyas for monday and thursday.
He gives each alliya exactly three pesukim, regardless of the lenght of
the (shabbos) kohen alliyah.


From: Shmuel Carit <cshmuel@...>
Date: Tue, 02 Nov 2004 11:07:06 +0000
Subject: Alzheimer's / Halacha

My mother-in-law has Alzheimer's and lives with us and my wife is her
primary caregiver. Our questions of a halachik nature we don't feel are
earth shattering and more often than not we answer them ourselves.

Isn't there such a thing as halchik "intuitive sense?" In the realm of
right and wrong; what's better and what's worse, don't we sometimes
allow the stoic halacha to bend towards deracheha darcheiu noam and
kavod habriyot, rather than towards the strict?



From: Brandon Raff <Brandon@...>
Date: Tue, 02 Nov 2004 23:13:41 +0200
Subject: Biblical personality

Does any one know which Biblical personality had the name Irit or Neurit?



From: Shimon Lebowitz <shimonl@...>
Date: Tue, 02 Nov 2004 21:55:53 +0200
Subject: Re: clop for "U'lchaparat Pasha"

I followed this thread thru the various statements of
> When I hear banging it throws me totally "out of kavana" 
> I find nothing more annoying than someone blurting out 
> I don't know what the halacha is ... but I ... found it very distracting.  
etc etc

I know I don't have Rav Metanya's excuse of being totally immersed in
learning Torah, but I *appreciate* every reminder I get to make
appropriate changes/additions in tefilah. I *like* the rosh chodesh
'klops' to remind me to say yaaleh veyavo, and I *like* the re-reminders
of hearing people actually saying it a bit louder when they get there. I
have more than once remembered yaaleh veyavo at the beginning, but not
at retzei! :-(

Just wanted to add my 2 cents/agorot. :)


P.S. The Rav Metanya I mentioned is quoted in TY Brachot (17b, 2:4) as
saying "I am grateful to my head, which bows of itself at Modim" (the
Pnei Moshe explains that he was preoccupied with his learning). Finding
a ref for this statement delayed my post till now.

Shimon Lebowitz                           mailto:<shimonl@...>
Jerusalem, Israel            PGP: http://www.poboxes.com/shimonpgp


From: Yisrael Dubitsky <Yidubitsky@...>
Date: Tue, 02 Nov 2004 13:42:13 -0500
Subject: Haftarah

What is the halakhic distinction vis a vis obligation between keri'at
ha-Torah and Haftarah? Is there a level of difference [viz., is it
Scriptural? rabbinic? less?], either from the reader's perspective or
from the congregation's? I am not interested in the historical
circumstances that brought about the requirement of reading a
haftarah. Once it has been made part of the synagogue service, does it
carry the same weight as the requirement to hear Torah reading? (and
please cite sources)

Why do some (Hasidic?) shuls have the reader of the Haftarah say the
berakhot alone out loud but the entire haftarah is then read silently
(or not so silently; oftentimes the cacophony that ensues can be
construed as disrespectful of all thing sacred) by all in shul? If the
reason is that once shuls do not use klaf [parchment] the congregation
cannot fulfill its obligation by hearing the reader read from a printed
book, then why dont all shuls [not just hasidic shteiblach) follow that
practice? In fact, why dont all shuls [or at least the wealthiest?] have
the requirement to purchase klaf for haftarot? And, furthermore, why
should the reader alone recite the blessing -- all should then be
required to say it as well [why should we assume to fulfill the
requirement of hearing the blessing from another, when we are perfectly
capable of saying it ourselves]?

Regarding correcting misread (mispronounced) words: why is there a much
stronger and heated tendency to correct words in Torah but not in
Haftarah?  (For those shuls that in fact do correct misread words, is
the type of mistaken reading the same or different than that
required/practiced in re Torah?) Inasmuch as most shuls read the
haftarah from a printed book and therefore assume the haftarah reader
does not need preparation to read it (which is certainly not the case re
Torah reading), many people with minimal reading (I wont even mention
leining) skills are being given the responsibility of reading on behalf
of all present. If my reading standards are higher than that of the baal
haftarah, how can I be yotse [fulfill my halakhic obligation] with his
reading? And yet mistaken readings in haftarah are very commonplace. If
the halakhic obligation is as strong as for Torah, why are there so few
corrections (in some cases: none) being called out during the reading?
And how can we knowingly allow such readers to get up there in the first
place? (At least in shuls that read from a klaf, the baal haftarah knows
in advance and must prepare). Might synagogues not be required to test
their potential readers prior to being called up, to see that they are
"up to snuff" (many do this with re Torah readers)?

And what does this say of the reading/pronouncing abilities of our
kehillot and their educational systems (viz., yeshivot, where reading
ability apparently takes a back seat to talmud study, etc [and I do not
intend herewith to denigrate talmud study; but it seems to me that
Hebrew reading ability should be a first hurdle to *perfect* before
moving on to higher level study]). I assume in most cases if there are
no corrections, the people either arent paying attention to haftarah or
assume the reading was correct, when in fact it wasnt. What does it say
of our priorities when shuls stop Torah reading to have the congregation
"quiet down," but dont do the same when the haftarah is being read (and
more importantly: why)?

While I do not mean to imply that these observations/practices are found
*everywhere*, I have noticed these phenomena in various and many
different synagogues, both in the US and Israel.

I would appreciate any and all answers and opinions on the subject. Many

Yisrael Dubitsky


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Nov 2004 08:53:27 +0000
Subject: Re: Kabbalat Shabbat

on 3/11/04 4:22 am, Gil Student <gil_student@...> wrote:
> The Rema, in Darkhei Moshe, OC 261:3, writes that the custom in his
> region was not to recite any mizmorim before Shabbos (i.e. Kabbolas
> Shabbos).

Not surprising since the whole custom of Kabbalat Shabbat was introduced
by the mekubbalim of Tsfat and would not have reached Poland in the
times of the Rema. As far as I know the first written reference to the
custom in Europe is by the Yosef Omets, dayan in Frankfurt at the
beginning of the 17th century, a generation after the Rema, who writes
(588) that it was then a very recent innovation.

Martin Stern

From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Nov 2004 16:53:52 +0000
Subject: Kabbalat Shabbat

on 3/11/04 10:02 am, Nathan Lamm <nelamm18@...> wrote:
> Martin Stern mentions a practice of the chazan only going to the bimah
> for Lecha Dodi, and back for Barekhu. What about Mizmor Shir and Hashem
> Malach?

I am sorry if it was not clear from my posting that the chazan does not
go back for these but says them also from the bimah. Incidentally their
recital predates the kabbalistic custom of Kabbalat Shabbat but, even
so, it would be a tirkha detsibbura for the chazan to go back and
forth. For those German Jews who follow Minhag Polen, Kabbalat Shabbat
is omitted when Yom Tov or Chol haMoed fall on Shabbat or Friday, and
these psalms are then recited at the amud immediately followed by
Barekhu with no Kaddish between.

Martin Stern


From: <Joelirich@...> (Joel Rich)
Date: Wed, 3 Nov 2004 05:16:38 EST
Subject: Kiddush/women

For those who are interested, this is a sub-issue of the general chiyuv
of kiddush. Go to WWW.YUTORAH.ORG and follow the links to Rabbi Y. Sacks
3 part audio on the topic of kiddush for all the detail you'll ever need

Joel Rich


From: <SPOOCH81@...>
Subject: Lecha Dodi

     The minhag to turn around and face backwards at boee v'shalom
during lecha dodi, should we really be facing the entrance of the shul
as to symbolize the welcoming of shabbos or is there a reason to simply
turn backwards? A.M.

[This was discussed in volume 37, issues 73,74 and 79. Basically, you
should be turning West, not necessarily back or towards entrance. See
details there. Mod.]


From: <GOLDDDS@...> (Mark H. Goldenberg)
Date: Wed, 3 Nov 2004 10:38:37 EST
Subject: Mirrors and Tefillin

More and more, I am noticing people using mirrors to check the position
of their Tefillin Shel Rosh.  This morning, the person next to me kept
looking in his mirror every five minutes througout davening.  Is that
proper and what should be done?  I can't ever recall seeing my Rabbeim
or Roshei Yeshiva looking in the mirror to check their tefillin.  Any

Mark H. Goldenberg DDS


From: Batya Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Nov 2004 07:04:42 +0200
Subject: MO/tzniut

In some places women wearing stockings is the defining sign between dati
and chardal/chareidi.



From: David Curwin <tobyndave@...>
Date: Wed, 3 Nov 2004 08:49:42 +0200
Subject: RE: Names for HaShem

From: Andy Goldfinger <Andy.Goldfinger@...>: 

>I know that we use the term Scheninah, which is feminine,
>to refer to HaShem's presence.  However, I can't recall 
>ever using the image of HaShem as our mother.

What about: "My soul is like a weaned child at his mother's side"
(Tehillim 131:2)?


From: <Brikspartzuf@...> (Tzi Briks)
Date: Wed, 3 Nov 2004 00:42:00 EST
Subject: Re: Names of HaShem

Dear Andy Goldfinger,

One of the attributes, or more precisely Partzufim, of Hashem is that of
Ima Elyona, the Supernal Mother.  This is reflected in the concept of
Ima Mesachechet Al Baneha, the Holy Mother that protects her children.
When the Benei Yisrael left Mitzrayim, Hashem was referred to as an
Eagle that hovers above and protects her brood.  Even the concept of the
Succah surrounding and protecting Klal Yisrael in its midst is that of
the protective Mother.  This concept of Ima Elyona is also referred to
as the Upper Shechina on which the lower Schechina is modeled after.
Let us pray that Ima Elyonah protect our Souls from all our enemies.

Dr. Tzvi Briks


From: <Harry459@...> (Harry Schick)
Date: Mon, 1 Nov 2004 21:46:16 EST
Subject: Question on Parshat Vayera

In Vayera at the Akida, Hashen tells Avraham, "now I know you fear
Elokim"-which implies that prior to this, Avraham did not have fear of
Elokim. How then is it possible that when Avimelech asks Avraham why he
told him that Sarah was his sister and didn't trust them to say she was
his wife, he says that there was no fear of Elokim in this place. If he
himself didn't have it, how could he be sure to recognize its lack in


From: Shlomo Spiro <spiro@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Nov 2004 19:22:23 +0200
Subject: Sarah in Hevron

On the question what was Sarah doing in Hevron when she lived with
Avraham in Beer Sheva

Avrahm took Yitzhok to the akedah from Beer Sheva ( to which he returns
after the event).  He did not tell Sarah about it ( as is mentioned in
midrashim).  When she discovered that he husband was not home, she
naturally went to his covenantal ally ( ba'al berit) Mamre to ask him if
he knew the whereabouts of her husband.  It was there at Hevron that the
Satan told her that Avraham had taken Yitzhah to the akedah and almost
killed him and she died.  Avraham in the meantime had returned to Beer
Sheva from the akedah, and he learned that Sarah died. He then went to
Hevron to bury and mourn her.


From: Batya Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Nov 2004 07:04:42 +0200
Subject: Sarah/Satan/medrish

There are all sorts of medrashim, contradictory, on this issue, so don't
take it too literally, seriously.  According to the pshat, Avraham was
in a rush "got up early in the morning" so he didn't stop by.  Makes
more sense that Sara knew she was dying and wanted to make sure that she
was by the ma'arah in Chevron to be buried there, before Hagar.



End of Volume 45 Issue 49