Volume 45 Number 97
                    Produced: Sat Nov 27 19:21:26 EST 2004

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

Books -  Yesodei Halakha on Hil' Shabbat
Carrying weapons on Shabbos and Yom Tov
         [Josh Backon]
Kashrus of Old Tefillin and new Sefer Torahs
Lateness and Guests
         [W. Baker]
Learning in Israel
         [Aliza Berger]
         [Menashe Elyashiv]
Men in Women's Section
         [Martin Stern]
New Sefer on Kinim- Tziyurim L'Meseches Kinim
Seating problems (2)
         [Martin Stern, Avi Feldblum]
Weapons on Shabbat
         [Menashe Elyashiv]


From: <Shuanoach@...>
Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2004 11:45:08 EST
Subject: Books -  Yesodei Halakha on Hil' Shabbat

I was just looking at the books "Yesodei Halakha" on hilkhot shabbat by
shmuel devir (deutsch) in Israel and i noticed that all of the haskamot
to the sefer which appear in volume I of the sefer are reprinted in
volume II, except for the haskama of the rashei yeshivah of yeshivat har
etzion (gush), Rabbis Amital and Lichtenstein. DOes anyone know why this



From: <BACKON@...> (Josh Backon)
Date: Fri,  26 Nov 2004 15:29 +0200
Subject: Carrying weapons on Shabbos and Yom Tov

The Yalkut Yosef IV on Dinei Choleh u'Mila b'Shabbat (Siman 329) goes
into detail on the carrying of weapons on Shabbat with extensive
quotation of sources (including an interesting RASHBA quoted in Beit
Yosef to TUR Orach Chayim 318).

There are plenty of people in our shul who "pack a 45" and come to shul
with a gun. And this isn't the Wild West Minyan [tm] but a regular shul
in Jerusalem.

Josh Backon


From: HB <halfull2@...>
Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2004 12:16:04 -0500
Subject: Kashrus of Old Tefillin and new Sefer Torahs

I recently received a pair of 50 year old tefillin that had not been
used for 35 years. The batim were small in the style in use 50 years ago
and definitely much smaller than the majority of tefillin made
today. After opening the Tefillin and examining the Klaf it appeared to
be clearer and crisper than new Klafs I have seen recently. I decided to
take the Tefillin in to a Sofer to be checked but as soon as I opened
the bag he immediately commented that he was 99% sure they were not
kosher before even looking at the Klaf. After he examining the Klaf the
Psak was that not only were they not kosher but that they had never been
kosher due to the letters not having been formed in accordance with
Halacha. A discussion led to the realization that in his opinion most of
the Tefilin written 30-50 years ago had never been Kosher.

Not being a member of the "Chumrah of the Month Club" myself I thought
this may be a club phenomenon so I changed the topic to the acquisition
of a used Sefer Torah for which I happen to be in the market for now. In
his opinion unless one knows the exact provenance of a used Sefer Torah
it is impossible to buy a definite Kosher one. i.e.- a well meaning but
ignorant Gabbai fixes a cracked letter in a shul Sefer Torah using the
wrong ink and not doing it Lishma. Not only is the Sefer pasul but there
is no way for anyone to tell which letter was fixed improperly.
Accordingly buying a used sefer is always a problem unless its history
is know all the way back.

This disturbs me for numerous reasons but let me just list one. Since at
this point in our history we are unsure of the exact letters to be used
in our Sefer Torahs with the majority of the world using one sefer and
the Taymanim using a sefer with 9 different letters in it ( and with a
better Mesorah in my humble opinion) why must we be so chosed that an
undetectable error has been made in an old Sefer Torah? If reasonable
due diligence tells us that the Sefer was not stolen shouldnt that

As for buying a new Sefer Torah I recently heard that people were silk
screening new Sefer Torahs and that there was no way of detecting if a
sefer was handwritten or silk screened. Has anyone heard of this


From: W. Baker <wbaker@...>
Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2004 10:22:10 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Lateness and Guests

> There is a point which I perhaps did not make clear in mail-jewish:
> these late guests just turned up late. If they had said at the time of
> invitation that they could not manage to come at the specified time, we
> could either have changed the invitation to lunch or, if they would not
> be much delayed, arrange to start a bit later. It strikes me as the
> height of rudeness simply to ignore the designated time and come an hour
> or more later, because it suited them, without prior warning.
> Martin Stern

As Martin is explaining this, I don't see any particularly Jewish
resonance to the issue.  It is just bad manners in any society.  If
asked to come at a certain time, either arrange to be there or decline
the invitation when given.  Of course if there is an emergency, that is
something "entirely different."

Wendy Baker


From: Aliza Berger <alizadov@...>
Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2004 13:04:32 +0200
Subject: Learning in Israel

My brother, not a subscriber to mailjewish, has the following request
(please respond to him, not to me, as well as to the list):

Some years ago I completed my doctoral dissertation on one year
post-high school Israel study, a popular pre-college choice in the
modern Orthodox community today (if you are interested in seeing it, I
have it available on-line at
http://www.lookstein.org/retrieve.php?ID=254646 ).

I am interested in getting information on post-high school Yeshiva study
options that existed before the contemporary Israel programs became
popular in the mid-70's. Pre-WWII, for example, my grandfather - not a
native Israeli - was studying in Hevron when the rioting broke out there
in 1929.  Chaim Grade, in his classic The Yeshiva, discusses the various
types of students in the Eastern European yeshiva and includes a
description of the American students.

I would welcome any suggestions of descriptions of such learning
programs (or individuals who traveled from the US to Europe or Israel to
study) pre- or post-WWII. Alternatively, if someone on the list
participated in such a program and would be willing to be interviewed, I
would appreciate it if they would get in touch with me at


Rabbi Shalom Z. Berger, Ed.D.
The Lookstein Center for Jewish Education in the Diaspora
Bar Ilan University

Aliza Berger-Cooper, PhD
English Editing: editing-proofreading.com
Statistics Consulting: statistics-help.com


From: Menashe Elyashiv <elyashm@...>
Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2004 11:41:55 +0200 (IST)
Subject: Locust

Locust have arrived in south Israel. They are Kosher le-tamanim & some
Moroccans. I have heard that a few outsiders also ate them. Like fish,
they are not meat, and can be eaten fried, cooked or fresh. Some Rabbis
say that their coming is because of the governments welfare cuts, sort
of a punishment for starving the poor.


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2004 14:01:30 +0000
Subject: Re: Men in Women's Section

on 26/11/04 12:26 pm, <Dagoobster@...> (Chaim Shapiro) wrote:

> I have to wonder if those men are considered Tifrosh Min Hatzibur
> (separating themselves)and by extension not Yotzae Tefila Btzibur
> (fulfill public prayer)?

The latter is certainly not true since women who daven there, though not
qualified to be counted for a minyan, are deemed to be participating in
tefillah betsibbur.

As regards the former, there may be times when a man may have to daven
there, for example if he has a slight gastro-intestinal infection and
fears that he may have to go to the toilet (bathroom in US) at frequent
intervals, which might disturb others. Another case mentioned previously
arises on chol hamoed where some men wear tefillin and others do not.

Martin Stern


From: <rebcharles@...>
Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2004 13:25:56 -0500
Subject: New Sefer on Kinim- Tziyurim L'Meseches Kinim

My brother, Shlomo Hafner, the author of Tziyurim L'Meseches Yevamos ,
has just published Tziyurim L'Meseches Kinim. It is a comprehensive
guide to Meseches Kinim, which is upcoming in the Daf Yomi cycle. It
contains detailed text explanations and clear, easy-to-understand
diagrams to simplify the complex cases of Kinim. A prototype of the
Sefer can be seen at www.insureback.com/kinim.

The Sefer should be available at bookstores and Seforim stores, if you
can't get a copy please contact me.  thx


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2004 09:07:35 +0000
Subject: Re: Seating problems

on 24/11/04 10:40 am, Chana Luntz <Chana@...> wrote:

> For those who have more option as to their seat selection, choosing or
> not choosing an aisle seat is clearly a way to minimise disruption
> depending on who you are and what your needs are, but it is not always
> possible.  But the derech eretz aspect of it (as with all the cases
> above) works both ways.  If you have no fixed seats, it is arguably just
> as much not derech eretz to fill up the aisle seats when you are early
> to minyan, so as to make sure the latecomers have to push past to get a
> seat, instead of thinking of them and leaving the space.  And if you
> take an aisle seat, you are putting yourself in the position that means
> others will have to push past or be forced to stand.  Again, a question
> of conflicting needs that does not necessarily go to the question of
> attitude to tephila at all.

I could not agree more with Chana on this point. Those of us who have
fixed seats (makom kavua') are obliged to use them (Ber. 6b). The
problem arises for visitors and I would have thought common courtesy
would suggest that they ask someone when they arrive to show them a free
place. If they come late, they should look for a seat which will cause
minimal disturbance. However I have noticed that very few visitors,
especially on weekdays, do either but, rather, go to an aisle seat
because it is the most convenient for them. Unlike Chana they do not
satisfy the definition of a wise person as "haroeh et hanolad - one who
foresees the consequences of his actions"

Martin Stern

From: Avi Feldblum <feldblum@...>
Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2004 07:03:11 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Seating problems

On Fri, 26 Nov 2004, Martin Stern wrote:

> I could not agree more with Chana on this point. Those of us who have fixed
> seats (makom kavua') are obliged to use them (Ber. 6b). The problem arises
> for visitors and I would have thought common courtesy would suggest that
> they ask someone when they arrive to show them a free place.

Having grown up in Washington heights, NY, not in the German community
there, but more aware of their community, and having been in several
jewish communities, I think that a major part of this discussion is a
difference in community norms.

If one went as a visitor to the main Broyers shul in Washington Heights,
you had a situation where everyone who was a regular had a well defined
makom kavuh - fixed seat, and it would be viewed as extremely offensive
for a visitor to sit in that seat. Your safest mode was to stand behind
the seats, until one of the regulars would point you to an "open seat".

On the other hand, in my main minyan growing up, the YU minyan, with the
exception of the the Rabbaim who sat in the front, and a handful of
regulars who sat in the section directly in front of that and on the
left side of the sheliach tzibur, there really was little concept of
"fixed" vs "open" seat. Part of that is driven by the fact that we had a
significant turn-over in people every year, since it was mainly a school
minyan.  There were quite a number of "regulars" from the community, but
with a very few exceptions, if a visitor came and took their seat, it
would be no big deal, they would simply move to a nearby seat. Even if
the visitor would ask an average person where to sit, they would likely
be told to just take an empty seat at that point.

Looking to my experiences in shuls in NJ, it is somewhat between the two
extremes. There were some number of people that were very fixed in where
their seat was. Most of those tended to be in the front half of the
shul, although there were some in the back half. There were
significantly more of us that would have regular places, but if we moved
by a few seats, no big deal. So if a visitor came and sat in the back
half of the shul, the odds were that he was safe. If he came and sat in
the front half of the shul, and happened to sit in a place that belonged
to one of the individuals that we knew was very particular about sitting
in his fixed seat, we would go over to the visitor and politely move him
to a "safer" location. But in general, I would say there was not an
individual who knew what were the "open" seats and would have that
responsibility. I get the feeling that in the case of a German type
shul, this would be something people where aware of and there may even
be someone with that specific responsibility.

Avi Feldblum


From: Menashe Elyashiv <elyashm@...>
Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2004 11:33:41 +0200 (IST)
Subject: Weapons on Shabbat

In a need, we do carry weapons on Shabbat, even outside the Eruv. In
Emanuel in the Shomron, one can see a Shabbat dressed man carrying his
M16 to guard duty. When the Uzi gun was in use, some would say that it
is not muksah, because you could use its back to open soda bottles.
However, one should cover his weapon in the Beit Keneset. A pistol can
be hidden by pulling out your shirt, a rifle should be placed under the
bench if possible. Some places, like the Kotel, one does not take off
his rifle.


End of Volume 45 Issue 97