Volume 46 Number 70
                    Produced: Fri Jan 21  5:07:31 EST 2005

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Asceticism or Fasting
         [Batya Medad]
ATID Fellows 2005-06
         [R. Jeffrey Saks]
Beauty and marriage
Costs of Weddings
Flatbush shiurim: History of Krias HaTorah; History of Tefillah
         [Chaim Tatel]
Kallah's family hosts the wedding
Peanuts and Peanut Oil on Pesach (2)
         [Shimon, Akiva Miller]
Peanuts on Pesach (2)
         [W. Baker, Ira L. Jacobson]
"Personal Piety"? - Rav Shteinman
Population Explosion in Egypt
         [David Eisen]
Rav Shteinman's recent trip
         [Carl Singer]
Wedding Costs
         [Daniel Wiener]


From: Batya Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 12:58:13 +0200
Subject: Asceticism or Fasting

> What's so disturbing? You've never heard of asceticism or fasting in
> Judaism?  In my book, here is a man who has spent (at least) the last
> 70...

It may be done, but it's not consistent with Judaism.  It is forbidden
to "beat" ourselves, starve ourselves, etc.  It is a mitzvah to nourish
and cherish the body.  Just because some people, even learned ones, may
do it, it shouldn't be emulated or imitated.  It is not the ideal.



From: R. Jeffrey Saks <atid@...>
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 16:46:11 +0200
Subject: ATID Fellows 2005-06

Are you the future of Jewish education? 

ATID has been established in order to enable talented Orthodox men and
women, who have a rich background in Torah study, to develop the tools
to make informed decisions about the education of the next generation.
We have established ATID to help shape and develop the future of
educational leadership in our community. These future leaders and
visionaries will be the teachers and builders of educational
institutions, and the forces in setting the educational agenda within
the Jewish community in Israel and abroad.

In the coming academic year (starting September 2005) the ATID
Fellowship will again be comprised of a select number of people who have
shown early promise of taking roles as leaders for Torah education. The
Jerusalem-based in-service program consists of weekly seminars,
individual and group research projects and field work, and mentoring by
senior educators. Fellows are generally in the first 5-10 years of their
professional life, and have at least a BA (or equivalent). The
fellowship is awarded for two consecutive academic years, and the
academic program runs from September-June (inclusive). Each Fellow will
receive a yearly stipend of $3,500 (US).

We ask prospective Fellows to submit a CV before applying. Qualified
candidates will be invited to complete the application process (the
deadline for which is April 21, 2005). Send your CV by email to
<apply@...> or by fax to 02-567-1723. (Be sure to indicate your
contact details, and date of birth.)

For more details on the ATID Fellows program, click here:
For details in Hebrew: www.atid.org/apply/applyh.asp

Rabbi Jeffrey Saks
Director, ATID, Academy for Torah Initiatives and Directions 
9 HaNassi Street, Jerusalem 92188 Israel
Tel. 02-567-1719 * Fax 02-567-1723 
<atid@...> * www.atid.org 


From: <chips@...>
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 19:24:05 -0800
Subject: Re: Beauty and marriage

> "In passing: That is exactly what the Bible
> states about Jacob...he did marry her for her attractiveness"
> The Torah says no such thing, nor does it ever imply that Jacob was
> attracted to her physically.

	It doesn't say but a careful reading sure does imply it. Posuk
ends Rochel was shapely and beautiful and next posuk starts that Yakov
loved Rochel.



From: Anonymous
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 06:54:09 -0500
Subject: Costs of Weddings

> After having gone through a horrible experience with my machutanim
> arranging for a wedding that happened last week I would like to say that
> your suggestion is far from ideal.  ....

I was troubled by this posting because I feel sorry for those involved.
A simcha turned into conflict.  The point of keeping one's children out
of the negotiations is excellent.

I was caught by the word "RULES" -- rule #1 should be that there are no
insurmoutable rules.  People tend to hide behind self-created or
self-selected rules, etc.

One of my son's Rosh Yeshiva's has established "shiddach" rules -- So my
son goes on shiddach dates wearing his Shabbos best -- even to play
miniature golf!  He's not to spend any money -- but then he went out
with a girl who suggested a venu that had a cover charge ....  it's all


From: Chaim Tatel <chaimyt@...>
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 08:36:12 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Re: Flatbush shiurim: History of Krias HaTorah; History of Tefillah

Joseph I. Lauer invited everyone to two shiurim on the "History of Krias
HaTorah" and the "History of Tefillah" to be presented by HaRav Avrohom
Lieberman shlit"a.

As a baal kriah for many years, I would really appreciate the
information from such a shiur.

However, I live b'sof HaOlam (end of the Earth) in Seattle, WA, and will
be unable to attend.

I would appreciate it if someone attending could take notes and post
them in the web (perhaps on the leining group at Yahoo).

Thank you.
Chaim Tatel


From: <chips@...>
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 19:24:05 -0800
Subject: Re:  Re: Kallah's family hosts the wedding

>       Not that it's any of my business but (1) it's traditionally the
>       Kallah's family that plans and hosts the wedding
> What is the halachic source of this minhag?

Has paying for the wedding replaced the dowry?



From: <shimonl@...> (Shimon)
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 14:37:18 +0200
Subject: Re: Peanuts and Peanut Oil on Pesach

> Incidentally, Rav Moshe did NOT give blanket permission for one to eat
> peanuts on Pesach. He specifically limited this permission to those
> whose family Minhag is to eat them on Pesach. If one's family's Minhag
> is not to eat them, that Minhag must be maintained (see the above
> responsum).

I don't have an Igros at hand, but my recollection was that he said it
just the other way around: He specifically limited this permission to
those who do NOT have a family Minhag NOT to eat them on Pesach. The
difference seems important to me, so can someone check which way he
stated it?


From: <kennethgmiller@...> (Akiva Miller)
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 12:02:46 -0500
Subject: Re: Peanuts and Peanut Oil on Pesach

Shmuel Himelstein wrote <<< In fact, the Teshuvah of R' Moshe (Responsum
63, Orach Chayim Vol. III), which permits the use of peanuts states
specifically that there were places in Europe where peanuts were eaten
on Pesach and places where they were not. Thus we have evidence of two
separate Minhag streams. ... Incidentally, Rav Moshe did NOT give
blanket permission for one to eat peanuts on Pesach. He specifically
limited this permission to those whose family Minhag is to eat them on
Pesach. If one's family's Minhag is not to eat them, that Minhag must be
maintained (see the above responsum). >>>

My reading of that Teshuva is slightly different.

Granted that "we have evidence of two separate Minhag streams", but Rav
Moshe acknowledged that there is a third group of people, who are not
part of either stream.

They do not have a specific minhag to avoid peanuts, but they also do
not have a specific minhag to allow peanuts. About 5-6 lines from the
end, Rav Moshe specifically allows this group to eat peanuts on Pesach.

Akiva Miller


From: W. Baker <wbaker@...>
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 10:46:16 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Peanuts on Pesach

> From: Israel Caspi <icaspi@...>
> R. Moshe spoke of European communities
> some of which did and some of which did not have the custom of eating
> peanuts (which, for reasons beyond my own limited botanic knowledge, are
> somehow not true legumes).  I'm pretty sure there was no implication --
> And then there's the additional issue of the permissibility of the
> by-products of legumes.  According to those who make this distinction,
> corn oil and corn syrup is OK while corn itself, as a legume, is not.

Just a small factual point here.  Peanuts are closer to legumes than
corn, as peanuts are dicotyledenous, (two piece seeds), while corn is a
grain that is not one of the forbidden species that can becom chametz.
Corn is monocotyledenous, a single piece seed, that was introduced from
the new world late in the 15th century or early 16th sentury, long after
the Torah and the main distintions were made.  It somehow got lumped
into the legume-kitniyot classification by Ashkenazim.

I don't think this has any bearing on the discussion, but lets be
accurate, as it is interesting in seeing how minhagim develop.

Wendy Baker

From: Ira L. Jacobson <laser@...>
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 17:05:24 +0200
Subject: Re: Peanuts on Pesach

Israel Caspi <icaspi@...> stated the following:

      (The Rabbinate in Israel, for example, while maintaining the
      minhag of not eating kitniyot, nevertheless allows (at least under
      certain circumstances) margarine made with oil from legumes.

You must recall that the majority of Israelis are Sefardim, and most eat
qitni'ot on Pessah.

Most hekhsherim on foods containing qitni'ot specify that the foods are
only for those who eat qitni'ot.  Even Harav MYL Lando, whose hekhsherim
are arguably the most strict, has of late been giving a hekhsher on rice
for Pessah.

      There was also a problem several years ago with Israeli food
      products manufactured -- again with the Rabbinate's approval --
      with corn syrup: the U.S.  "rabbinate" did not agree with the
      Israeli Rabbinate, the result being that the Israeli manufacturers
      who wanted to sell in the U.S.  had to change their product's
      formulation to accommodate the requirements of the
      U.S. "rabbinate."

I would certainly think that American Sefardi rabbis had no problem with
the Israeli corn oil.

IRA L. JACOBSON         


From: <Phyllostac@...> (Mordechai)
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 05:01:35 EST
Subject: "Personal Piety"? - Rav Shteinman

I think we should realize that Rav Shteinman shlit"a lives a very simple
life. Even on days when he eats 'normally', he probably eats very little
by current-day Western standards. He grew up in a poor environment in
Eastern Europe, lived through the holocaust, and then moved to poor
(then - by western standards) Eretz Yisroel. He didn't get used to the
lavish eating standards of today. I bet that many times in his life he
went hungry - or at least not fully satiated.

If someone is accustomed to eating very little for so many years, it's
not such a great feat to fast for twenty hours. So maybe he ate a bit
less than normal. Perhaps he also 'fasted' for religious
reasons. Perhaps for health reasons (due to travelling and/or in
general) as well. I believe he had his personal physician travelling
with him, by the way.  Also, perhaps the newspaper account was not
entirely accurate in portraying his behavior - esp. perhaps what was
behind it - as well.  Perhaps he ate a substantial meal before departure
on the journey.

He is a man who spends his days involved in learning and teaching Torah.
He doesn't do physical labor, nor go to the gym every morning to 'work
out'. He therefore doesn't need to eat as much as others. Also, perhaps
he follows the advice of the Rambam (Maimonides), about the dangers of
overeating and to eat only when one is hungry.

In years past, there were holy Jews who fasted on 'behab' (certain
Mondays and Thursdays following Sukkos and Pesach), shovavim tat
(certain times of the years), etc. Such fasts were in addition to major
required fasts such as Yom Kippur, Tisha Be'Av, Asara biTeves, etc. Many
of them were healthier than some of us who fast less today. Sometimes
fasting can actually be healthy.

All in all, I don't think the report is cause for alarm.

Halevai (would it be) that more Jews followed the ways of Rav Shteinman
shlit"a - not only spiritually, but physically as well. We would be the
healthier for it.



From: David Eisen <davide@...>
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 15:39:46 +0200
Subject: RE: Population Explosion in Egypt

> Does anyone know the mathematical formula whereby 70 souls came down to
> Egypt with Jacob and in 210 years became several million (600,000 males
> of 20 and over plus their spouses and families)?

See http://vbm-torah.org/archive/parsha65/13-65shemot.htm (the Hebrew
version can be accessed at:
http://www.etzion.org.il/vbm/archive/9-parsha/16shmot.rtf) for a
comprehensive answer by HaRav Yaacov Medan, newly appointed Rosh Yeshiva
of Yeshivat Har Etzion, that clearly demonstrates the mathematical
plausibility based on 6 children per family for 9 generations.

B'virkat HaTorah,
David Eisen


From: Carl Singer <casinger@...>
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 07:00:17 -0500
Subject: Rav Shteinman's recent trip

> The following is an excerpt of an account of Rav Shteinman's recent trip
> to the U.S.:      ..............

I think the excerpt probably reflects more on the writer than on the
subject.  Current style is writing about prominent Rabbis (most commonly
in biographies) seems to stretch or re-emphasize / de-emphasize to build
an image that the author feels compelled to portray.

Carl Singer


From: Daniel Wiener <wiener2@...>
Date: Fri, 21 Jan 2005 00:05:25 +0200
Subject: Wedding Costs

most weddings in Israel-split all evenly. however, many can't afford and
assume that guest gifts(monetary) will cover all costs or one sides,

Dan wiener <ppman@...>


End of Volume 46 Issue 70