Volume 46 Number 43
                    Produced: Sat Jan  1 19:58:18 EST 2005

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

Bread at Seuda Shlishit (3)
         [Yisrael Medad, Joel Rich, Mark Steiner]
"Chatzitza" on Arm
         [David Cohen]
Cost of Simchas
         [Gershon Dubin]
Imitation traif food
         [Carl Singer]
Jerusalem Post reviews of books concerning Jewish women and family
         [Joseph I. Lauer]
Parev Cheese Cake
         [Susan Shapiro]
Pareve Cheesecake
         [Mimi Markofsky]
Rabbinical Authority
         [Mark Steiner]
         [Joel Rich]
         [Shmuel Himelstein]
Watch as Chatzitza for Tefillin
         [Shmuel Himelstein]
A Wedding and a Tzaddik
         [H Goldsmith]


From: Yisrael Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2004 14:57:45 +0200
Subject: Bread at Seuda Shlishit

Binyamin Lemkin's question about bread vs. mezonot:- besides the
problem, perhaps, of overweightness or the incapability ("even maybe in
the category of "mi-us") of eating bread during the winter months when
Seuda Shlishit is too close to lunch, I want to remind all that if one
eats mezonot in place of bread, and this includes even just a big piece
of cake, one is required to 'bench' Birkat HaMazon in any case.

Yisrael Medad

From: <Joelirich@...> (Joel Rich)
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2004 02:03:04 EST
Subject: Re: Bread at Seuda Shlishit

> Over the years I've noted that some will eat mezonoth at seudah
> shlishith instead of bread. I spoke recently with Rav David Bar
> Hayim(www.torahlight.com or www.halachaonline.com) and he said that all
> three seudoth are equally important and require bread. Does anybody know
> what those who do otherwise base themselves on?
>                    -Binyamin Lemkin

see S"A O"C 291:5
Joel Rich

From: Mark Steiner <marksa@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2004 15:48:19 +0200
Subject: RE: Bread at Seuda Shlishit

Of course, the shulhan arukh O.H. 291:5 states that there is a dispute
concerning the necessity of bread (though all agree that bread is
preferable, Mishnah Berurah ad. loc.).  The Shulhan Arukh states that if
one is "very satiated" then (rather than forcing himself to eat bread,
which itself is not the right thing to do on shabbat) he can eat other
things, even fruit, but preferably cake.  I do this myself in the
winter, particularly if I am learning between mincha/maariv (in the
spirit of Torah can change a dieved into a lechatchila).

Mark Steiner


From: David Cohen <ddcohen@...>
Date: Thu, 30 Dec 2004 23:40:54 -0500
Subject: "Chatzitza" on Arm

Those who leave their watches on under the straps of their tefilin shel
yad (hand) cite the Rama's codification (OC 27:4) of the Rashba's
position that the only problematic "chatzitzah" is a barrier between the
tefilah itself and the body, and not between the straps and the body.

It seems to me that perhaps the Rashba is following the position of the
Rosh (see OC 25:11), who holds that the primary mitzvah is to have the
tefilin in place, and that winding the straps around the arm is
secondary, and should be done after putting on the tefilah shel rosh
(head).  Mishkenot Ya`akov (simanim 28-29) deduces from the words of the
Rambam and (IIRC) the Rif that they disagree, and hold that the winding
of the straps is also a primary part of the mitzvah.  Indeed, R' Hershel
Schachter records in Nefesh ha-Rav (p. 105) that because of this, the
practice of R' YD Soloveichik was to wind the straps even around the
hand before proceeding to the tefilah shel rosh.

The most common practice nowadays is to wind the straps around the arm
(although generally not around the hand, as per the Ari) before putting
on the tefilah shel rosh.  If this practice is, in fact, because of a
concern that the halakhah is not like the Rosh, and these windings are
part of the primary mitzvah (as Mishnah Berurah 25:38 assumes), then
perhaps consistency would require avoiding a chatzitzah between these
windings and the arm.



From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@...>
Date: Thu, 30 Dec 2004 22:58:46 -0500
Subject: Cost of Simchas

From: <TLent3192@...>

<<  I am making a wedding here in Brooklyn and spoke to the caterer about
all the extra food at the wedding especially at the Shmorg. He said his
policy is to let Tomchei Shabbat come after all the people go to the
chupa to take all the leftovers to distribute. This is a policy that
could change throughout the world if the Baal Simchas would insist on
the caterer doing likewise and let the local Tomchei or another Tzedakah
take the leftovers>>

It is done, both for TS and other tzedakos as well as for yeshivos.  One
organization that does this has the delightful name "She'eris Haplate"!



From: Carl Singer <casinger@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2004 05:26:37 -0500
Subject: Imitation traif food

> The problem's with those inherently traif ones like veal
> parmejan. [parmesan] And do you really want to imitate something so
> traif?

About 40 years ago when I was pledging a fraternity and going through
what was called "Hell Week" (Not much hazing - really getting the
incoming class to spend a week scrubbing the fraternity house clean.)
we were served unsweetened grapefruit juice that had been tinted blue
using harmless food coloring.  Amazingly many couldn't drink this
concoction because it looked so vile. (the suggestion that it was
battery acid didn't help!)

Today, I find the same psychological (?) revulsion re: foods that are
obviously traif.  I couldn't eat / enjoy a kosher "cheeseburger" even
knowing that it's tofu.  Kosher fish tinted red to look like shrimp is a
similar turn off for me.  Having grown up knowing that these are traif I
just can't stomach them.

(1) I was wondering whether others have the same feelings.

(2) As a matter of chinuch -- it's probably to the good that our
    children have some visceral aversion to these traif foods in
    addition to their "book learning" - which, btw, teaches that there's
    nothing "wrong" with these foods BUT that they are forbidden, stam.
    i.e. I don't hate ham, I just don't eat it because of the halacha.

Carl Singer


From: Joseph I. Lauer <josephlauer@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2004 11:15:31 -0500
Subject: Jerusalem Post reviews of books concerning Jewish women and family

    The Books section of The Jerusalem Post Online Edition of December
29, 2004, has reviews of two books dealing with Jewish women and family
life in Medieval Europe.

    One review is of "Pious and Rebellious: Jewish Women in Medieval
Europe", by Avraham Grossman and Jonathan Chipman (Brandeis University
Press, 329pp., $65).

    The review, entitled "The missing medieval women", is by Danielle
Max, "a freelance journalist living in Tel Aviv."  According to the
reviewer, "The main theme is the changing image of the Jewish woman."

    The URL for this review is

    The other review is of "Mothers and Children: Jewish Family Life in
Medieval Europe", by Elisheva Baumgarten (Princeton University Press,
189pp., $39.50).

    The review, entitled "The myth of isolation", is by David Wolpe,
"senior rabbi at Sinai Temple in Los Angeles."  According to the paper's
"blurb", "Surprising revelations may cause us to rethink our
presumptions about medieval Jewish women."

    The URL for this review is

    Joseph I. Lauer
    Brooklyn, New York


From: <SShap23859@...> (Susan Shapiro)
Date: Thu, 30 Dec 2004 22:54:38 EST
Subject: Parev Cheese Cake

      Just a note on parve cheesecake.  There are a number of bakers
      here in Jerusalem, who make a tofu "cheesecake" which is
      absolutely delicious.  Honestly, I think it tastes better than the
      real thing!  And it is much lighter, too.

There is a bakery here in S. Diego which makes kosher parev cheese cakes
and they are absolutely delicious. She has been known to mail her cheese
cakes across the country.

Susan, S. Diego


From: <AUNTIEFIFI@...> (Mimi Markofsky)
Date: Thu, 30 Dec 2004 23:44:13 -0500
Subject: Re: Pareve Cheesecake

Toffuti brand products make a pareve cream cheese that makes a fantastic
cheesecake.  I use it for sweet as well as savory cheesecakes and my
guests love it!

Mimi Markofsky


From: Mark Steiner <marksa@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2004 15:21:15 +0200
Subject: RE: Rabbinical Authority

The question of rabbinical authority is very tricky, since we don't have
an elected or even appointed "hierarchy" as in the Catholic church
(personally, I'm glad we don't).  One of the sources of authority, of
course, is the rebbe/talmid relationship, or the authority of a rabbi
who has been appointed by a kehillah.  The question arises whether a rav
who is not my rebbe, nor has he been appointed by my kehillah, has any
status of authority with respect to me.  The answer happens to be yes,
according to Tos. Pes.  31b, d"h moreh halakha--namely, that the gadol
hador has the status of everyone's rebbe.  Thus, every power that your
own rebbe (or rabbi) has over you, the gadol hador has also.  Of course,
this raises the question, "Who is the gadol hador?", or: how do we know
who the gedol hador is (compare the question in Deuteronomy: how do we
know who the false prophet is?)  but this is a topic for another posting
(luckily, shabbat is coming in and I don't have time)


From: <Joelirich@...> (Joel Rich)
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2004 10:27:46 EST
Subject: Rings

      Speaking of rings, when and how did the practice of men wearing
      wedding rings (bands) catch on in the Orthodox world? (Especially
      Modern Orthodox vs. Chareidi) Do we find such a practice in

I always chuckle at this issue being an MO male who wears a ring (which
BTW in the modern workplace is a segula against unwanted opposite sex
attention). When the issue is raised by "more frum" friends, I always
ask them if their wives wear wedding rings. The usual answer is yes. I
then ask them for the source of this practice in chazal.  Hmmmm? the
mishnah talks about silver, not rings.  Why do nonJewish couples wear
rings? who did it first? Why isn't it chukat haakum??????

Joel Rich


From: Shmuel Himelstein <himels@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2004 07:58:21 +0200
Subject: Smoking

In the latest Efrat magazine, Rabbi Shlomo Riskin discusses the
following question: If one sees a friend smoking, is one permitted to
take his or her cigarette pack and throw it away, or is that Bal

He rules clearly that it is permissible and may be imperative to throw
away the cigarettes, because of the demonstrated effects of cigarette
smoking on one's health.

He also notes that he would have issued a Psak forbidding all cigarette
smoking, but as the Chief Rabbis have not done so he cannot.

Shmuel Himelstein


From: Shmuel Himelstein <himels@...>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2004 07:49:52 +0200
Subject: Watch as Chatzitza for Tefillin

Rav Moshe Sternbuch, in his "Teshuvot Vehanhagot" Vol. II, Siman 26
(p. 25) directly addresses the question of whether one may wear a watch
under his Tefillin shel Yad.

He concludes (my translation): "It is proper/advisable ("Ra'ui" in the
Hebrew) to take off one's watch before laying Tefillin. However there is
no Halachic requirement to do so. This, however, has been the practice"
("Nahagu Kein").

In other words, this is not a binding requirement, but people have
accepted that they do not wear their watches.

Shmuel Himelstein


From: <HHgoldsmith@...> (H Goldsmith)
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2004 01:14:23 EST
Subject: A Wedding and a Tzaddik

Rabbi Y. Auerbach, shlita, rabbi of Ramat Chen and nephew of Rav Shlomo
Zalman, zt"l, relates that by the time he got married he lost both of
his parents. Because of this, his uncle, Rav Shlomo Zalman, took care of
many of his wedding details and walked him down to his chuppah. The
wedding took place in Tel Aviv, where the couple intended to live after
their wedding.

"Everyone was sure," relates Rabbi Auerbach, "that my uncle would return
to Yerushalayim after the wedding, but, in fact, he surprised us all by
saying that he wished to sleep overnight in Tel Aviv."

"For years I did not know why he had made this choice, but I finally did
get an explanation when, years later, I had the merit of helping bring
an orphan to his wedding day. I had taken care of many of the details,
and, of course, intended to partake of the wedding meal. Before the
wedding, my uncle approached me and said, "I hope you intend to do the
same for the chosson as I did for you. You do remember that I stayed the
night in Tel Aviv..."

"Of course I remember, " replied Rabbi Auerbach. "In fact, I have been
wondering ever since why you stayed overnight. Perhaps now is the time
to tell me."

"You see, one of the more joyous moments after the wedding occurs when
the chosson and kallah open some of their gifts. With excitement and
curiosity, they open each one and run to show their beautiful gifts to
their parents. I knew that you would not have anyone to share in your
excitement when you and your kallah opened your presents, so I decided
to stay overnight in Tel Aviv so as to be there for you." (Kol b'Ramah)


End of Volume 46 Issue 43