Volume 45 Number 80
                    Produced: Mon Nov 22  6:38:33 EST 2004

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

Late (shul/Friday invitations)
         [Leah Perl Shollar]
Lateness to Shul (2)
         [Martin Stern, Harry Weiss]
Love (ehov) (3)
         [Tzvi Stein, Ben Katz, Art Kamlet]
The Stones
         [Batya Medad]
Tachanun after Shkiah
         [Harry Weiss]
Tal uMatar
         [Abie Zayit]
Translating Tanakh
         [N Miller]
Two Pair Tefillin
         [Gershon Dubin]


From: Leah Perl Shollar <leahperl@...>
Date: Fri, 19 Nov 2004 10:02:33 -0500
Subject: Re: Late (shul/Friday invitations)

I would like to respond to what I feel is not being dan lechaf zechus.

As for Friday night invitations, it is quite possible that the wife
needed to attend the mikve, and did not realize it would fall out this
way when she accepted the invitation.

As for arriving late at shul: I am not excusing the behavior, just
trying to put it in context.  Many men work extremely late during the
week, come home and help with homework, kids, laundry.  (Women, too, but
they can daven at home).  Many parents in our community are operating on
a serious sleep deficit.  Instead of being annoyed with their lateness,
perhaps we should be compassionate.

As long as they are not talking when they come in, or invading people's
daled amos who are davening, let's be a little tolerant.

Leah Perl


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Thu, 18 Nov 2004 20:36:01 +0000
Subject: Re: Lateness to Shul

on 18/11/04 11:23 am, David Charlap <shamino@...> wrote:

> I have little problem with people being late (as long as they're not so
> late that we don't have a minyan in time for Borchu.)  I have a much
> greater problem with people being rude and inconsiderate, regardless of
> when they arrive.

David is 100% correct in his last sentence. I would also have little
problem personally with latecomers if they were not usually
inconsiderate as well.  Their lateness as such is a matter between them
and HKBH. After all, the Gemara (Ber. 6b) quotes Rabbi Yochanan as
stating that if HKBH come to shul and does not find a minyan there, He
immediately becomes angry.

However it is the general acceptance that coming late is not a matter of
concern that leads to the inconsiderate behaviour. If it were expected
that everyone come on time, then someone who is late would be
embarrassed and try to be as inconspicuous as possible. They would
certainly not make their lateness obvious by pushing past others or
davenning early parts of the seder hatefillah in a loud voice for all to

Martin Stern

From: Harry Weiss <hjweiss@...>
Date: Fri, 19 Nov 2004 10:02:26 -0800
Subject: Lateness to Shul

>From: Minden <phminden@...>
>- Ever heard of a shool/minyen where this is done?
>- Chiyoovem are a minneg, not a din. Would it be allowed for the board
>or the rabbi to issue a takone [decree] saying people lose their chiyuv?

We do not let someone who comes in after Ashrei to lead Shacharit.

People coming late is very frustrating, esepcially in small shul.  We
have had to skip the early Kadishes because we still did not have a
minyan.  How many people will show up late to work on a regular basis.
How many of these people will show up late to a movie, a concert or a
sporting event.  If they get a ticket, how many will show up late to
court.  Is G-d of such a low level that people don't feel He is worth it
to show up on time.


From: Tzvi Stein <Tzvi.Stein@...>
Date: Fri, 19 Nov 2004 08:21:40 -0500
Subject: Re: Love (ehov)

> From: Yehonatan Chipman <yonarand@...>
>        I would add here that Judaism does not necessarily have a concept
> of romantic love, and certainly does not see exclusive love, in the
> sense of an overpowering emotion, as the basis for monogamous marriage.
> [snip]

I can't disagree on factual grounds with the statements you made like
"Monogamy is based on an halakhic and ethical commitment ... Marital
fidelity is an ethical commitment the partners make to one naother, not
an outcome of a particular emotional connection, etc." but these
statements are too cold and legalistic to have much effect on the
behavior or emotions of someone who's already affected by the concept of
romantic love, which we all are, whether we admit it or not.

It may or man not be true that "Judaism does not have a concept of
romantic love".  I heard that idea promulgated many times in yeshiva in
connection to shidduchim, and I actually think that stating "Judaism
does not have a concept of romantic love" is *itself* doing a great deal
of "mischief".

Romantic love, whether of Jewish origin or not, is here to stay in our
culture and is deeply ingrained among Jews and non-Jews alike.  To wave
our hands and say it's not Jewish and to ignore it does a great deal of
harm.  We have to find a way to integrate romantic love into our
marriages, starting at the shidduch phase or else we're going to have a
lot of disillusioned people who find themselves married to someone they
are not romantically attracted to, because their rebbe said that
"Judaism does not have a concept of romantic love".  Then, years down
the line, they realize that they really do need romantic love, and
that's where the big problems start.

From: Ben Katz <bkatz@...>
Date: Fri, 19 Nov 2004 09:38:15 -0600
Subject: Re: Love (ehov)

         Yaakov was clearly romantically in love with Rachel, from first
sight.  He kisses her before he knows she is his cousin.  And he as well
as the Torah constantly refer to Rachel as his wife, Leah is rarely if
ever referred to as such.

Ben Z. Katz, M.D.
Children's Memorial Hospital, Division of Infectious Diseases
e-mail: <bkatz@...>

From: <Artkamlet@...> (Art Kamlet)
Date: Sun, 21 Nov 2004 00:31:32 EST
Subject: Re: Love (ehov)

I think one of the most compelling examples in the Torah of romantic
love of a man for a woman appears in the pareshe we just read:

  "And Jacob served seven years for Rachel; and they seemed to him but a
few days for the love he had to her." (Hertz translation)

An interesting aside: There's a piece of jewelry sold at places like JC
Penney and some Jewish catalogs I have seen, as a "love charm."

It might be a round medallion-shaped piece, or a heart-shaped piece of
jewelry.  It has words on it from the same parshe, and has a zig-zag cut
which actually makes it two separate pieces of jewelry which, when the
two pieces are fitted together, the words can be read.  A small hole at
the top of each half each allows each piece to be hung with a chain
around the neck.  The words are: (loose translation)

   May the Lord watch between me and you when we are apart from

Imagine: Jacob thought he needed to slip away from Lavan in secret, and
when Lavan discovers this, and discovers his Terafim (idols?) are
missing, he chases after and eventually catches up with Jacob.  In anger
he accuses Jacob of slipping away unannounced but more importantly, of
taking his Terafim.  Jacob says, Go look, and after Rachel deceives her
father and the Terafim are not found, Jacob angrily asks Lavan: What is
my offense?

Two angry men.

What does Lavan say in reply?  He changes the subject!

He builds a pile of rocks, and when Jacob asks what's up with the rocks,
Lavan tells Jacob this serves as a line in the sand, a "dead-line" --
that after Jacob leaves, he'd better not come back planning anything,
for if Jacob crosses it, G-d will be watching him and by implication G-d
will punish Jacob.

Two men who have had years of anger building up within each of them, and
then these angry words spoken by a deceitful father-in law to his
son-in-law nephew.

Yet through the techniques of modern-day marketing, those angry words
are sold to people as romantic love words.

But the two do break bread.  They make a truce.

Art Kamlet    Columbus OH       <ArtKamlet@...>


From: Batya Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Sat, 20 Nov 2004 22:26:06 +0200
Subject: The Stones

I'm just wondering, do any of the meforshim discuss any connection
between the stones Yaakov used and the ones David used?



From: Harry Weiss <hjweiss@...>
Date: Fri, 19 Nov 2004 12:04:46 -0800
Subject: Tachanun after Shkiah

>From: Bill Bernstein <billbernstein@...>
>I believe it is the minhag HaGra not to say tachanun during bein
>hashmashos.  Also the minhag Jerushalmi.  At least that is what I
>remember from Bet HaMedrash shul in Philadelphia, which has this minhag.

There is a chapter of Tehllim that is part of Tachanun.  (it varies
between different nuschaot of Tachanun).  Perhaps those that do not say
Tachanun after susnset are those that refrain from saying Tehlim at


From: <oliveoil@...> (Abie Zayit)
Date: Sat, 20 Nov 2004 21:21:11 +0000
Subject: Tal uMatar

Michael Mirsky wrote:

>I always thought that the Tal uMatar is directed towards Israel getting
>the rain, not the country we're living in. So it wouldn't matter where
>in the world you live. But on the other hand, there is the difference
>between Israel & other countries between when we start saying it.

Clearly we do not pray for rain in Israel, or we would all start with
the Israelis after Sukkot.

For an excellent analysis of the entire issue (including the Southern
Hemisphere and why we pray for rain in Bavel) see Dr. Moshe Sokolow's
article at http://www.lookstein.org/articles/veten_tal.htm

Abie Zayit


From: N Miller <nmiller@...>
Date: Fri, 19 Nov 2004 10:05:14 -0500
Subject: Translating Tanakh

I've been having an interesting off-line discussion with a list member,
and with his permission I would like to make the debate public.

At issue is what constitutes translation.  I wrote that translating
'tohu v'bohu' as 'bewilderment and empty' (Sapirstein Edition, published
by Artscroll) is wildly inaccurate.  My interlocutor (he prefers to
remain anonymous) replies that my argument is with Rashi, not with the
translator.  In short, Rashi defines 'tohu' as 'bewildering' or (n"a)

But I'm the one who's really astonished.  It appears that in some O.
circles a proper translation of Tanakh can only be in the light of
Rashi's commentary; indeed, the publisher's preface states: "In short,
almost by definition, the study of Chumash has come to mean
Chumash/Rashi".  I discover also that the Targum Onkelos included in the
volume has been 'emended' to bring it in line with the version Rashi is
thought to have used.  As one who began learning Khumesh mit Rashi at
the age of 5, my affection for Rashi is undiminished.  But I never
thought until now that Khumesh _mit_ Rashi is equivalent to an
integrated text.  What this seems to mean in practice is that some
translators simply translate Rashi and call it a khumesh translation.
Rashi is not only in the canon--which is as it should be--but has become
the arbiter for all time of what Tanakh says.

Now R. Aryeh Kaplan, also Orthodox, renders Rashi's tranlation as
"without form and empty" and gives that as his own as well.  How could
that be?  My surmise is that, without kholile v'khas _disagreeing_ with
Rashi, R. Kaplan along with many others thought that 'tohu' is not
related to 'tohe' (is astonished), that Rashi gulp erred in deriving
that meaning.  And why might he not have erred?  Was his knowledge of
ancient languages sufficient to the task?  Great as he was, where is it
written that he was infallible?  And if not infallible, how can his
version even be thought of as a sufficient basis for a modern English

Or take the tree that Avrohom ovinu planted in Beer-Sheva.  Our
translators call it an 'eshel'.  Why?  Because Rashi couldn't or
wouldn't decide between two Amoraim.  Fine, but I want to teach my
grandson Khumesh.  What do I do when I get to 'eshel'?  Shall I tell him
that Rashi was undecided or shall I tell him that there's been a little
progress since the Amoraim in the matter of Biblical Hebrew and that
most people know that the eshel Avraham as it's called today in Israel
is a tamarisk?  Better yet, why can't I tell him first about the Tannaim
and then about the tamarisk?

I hope others will have something to say about all this.

Noyekh Miller


From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@...>
Date: Sat, 20 Nov 2004 22:43:31 -0500
Subject: Two Pair Tefillin

From: <GOLDDDS@...> (Mark H. Goldenberg)
<<When we asked them about their minhag, they said that they wear Rashi
and Rabeinu Tam tefillin, and they wear them together.  They suggested
that is the proper way, and everyone should put tefillin on in that
fashion.  Has anyone seen this practice before?>>

It is the minhag of Iraqi Jewry.  I'm surprised you noticed, because
they are usually careful to keep one hidden under their talis or



End of Volume 45 Issue 80