Volume 48 Number 72
                    Produced: Wed Jun 29  5:28:53 EDT 2005

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

20 sivan
         [Ed Goldstein]
Accepting Psak without reviewing
         [Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz]
Amen to Non-Live Voices
         [Janice Gelb]
Answering from the hallway
         [Carl Singer]
Brachot out of time
         [Joel Rich]
Kiddush Levanah - Women
         [Akiva Miller]
A note about maariv and shavuot
         [Akiva Miller]
Second Job / Volunteering
         [Tzvi Stein]
Technology in the service of Halachah
         [Shmuel Himelstein]


From: <bernieavi@...> (Ed Goldstein)
Date: Tue, 28 Jun 2005 07:10:26 -0400
Subject: 20 sivan

The luach says this is a ta'anit with selichot. Why?

I actually fasted this day once. It was the day of my huppah that night.

Rabbi Ed Goldstein


From: Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz <Sabba.Hillel@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Jun 2005 05:41:09 -0400
Subject: Re: Accepting Psak without reviewing

> From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@...>
> From: Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz <sabba.hillel@...>
>>Once the young man received the psak (that the service dish after 24
>>hours could be used fo dairy), the plate was completely kosher and
>>Rabbi Pam had no qualms about allowing him to use it.

> However, Rabbi Reisman quoted Rav Pam further as saying that the
> particular fellow in the story was a regular mispallel at Rabbi Ploni's
> shul and would have in fact asked Rabbi Ploni the question had he not
> seen Rav Pam sooner.
> Under those circumstances (only?) did Rav Pam send the person to get a
> pesak with which he himself did not agree.

I think that, as told, the story does *not* say that the bachur would
have asked Rav Ploni first had he seen him.  It sounded to me as if the
bachur asked Rav Pam because he learned in his Yeshivah.  I suppose this
point needs clarification from Rabbi Reisman.

As told, it sounds as if Rav Pam sent the bachur to Rav Ploni because of
the psak expectd, not because he normally would have asked him (had he
seen him first).

Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz | Said the fox to the fish, "Join me ashore."
<Sabba.Hillel@...> | The fish are the Jews, Torah is our water.


From: Janice Gelb <j_gelb@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Jun 2005 03:05:32 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Amen to Non-Live Voices

Aharon Fischman wrote:
> Sitting in bed at 2:00 AM we found ourselves reflexively responding at
> the appropriate points in the service asking ourselves afterwards if
> there is any halachik need or prohibition to participate in such a
> situation.  I know that one is not yotzei [fulfill the obligation of]
> the Megilla via phone but does any chiyuv [religious requirement] still
> exist to answer Amen?

A Google search reveals that our esteemed group has discussed this issue
previously: Mark Dratch provided the following answer in vol 27, issue

R. Shlomo Zalman Auerbach, zt"l, maintained that the sound produced by a
microphone or telephone is not the real voice of the human speaker (it
is the vibration of the membrane in the man-made speaker) and,
therefore, one does not answer amen when hearing such a bracha.
(Minchat Shlomo, no. 9) The same would apply to a live broadcast.

Others disagree, however, maintaining that the sound waves generated by
the amplifier are a direct result of the speaker's voice, which itself
is actually sound waves generated by his speech. According to this
opinion, one can fulfill an obligation and must answer amen to a bracha
heard in this manner. (Iggrot Moshe, Orach Chayyim II,
no. 108). R. Moshe Feinstein, zt"l, allowed a woman in a hospital,
unable to make havdalah on her own, to hear it recited over the
telephone. (Iggrot Moshe, Orach Chayyim IV, no. 91).  It appers, IMHO,
that a live broadcast is similar to a telephone.  R. Eliezer Waldenberg,
shlit"a,-- quoting Minchat Elazar, R. Tzvi Pesach Frank, Halchot Ketanot
and others-- allows, in extenuating circumstances, the use of a
microphone for megillah reading (Tzitz Eliezer, VIII, no. 11).  I heard
from Rabbi Haskel Lookstein that Rabbi Soloveitchik, zt"l, allowed the
use of a microphone for megillah reading.

-- Janice


From: <casinger@...> (Carl Singer)
Date: Mon, 27 Jun 2005 21:08:15 -0400
Subject: Answering from the hallway

Perhaps answering my own (previous) question -- my son gives a brief
shiur from the Kitzer between Mincha / Ma'ariv.  Discussing what
constitutes a minyan the Kitzer points out that people in two adjacent
rooms, even with an open doorway in between cannot be combined (in
number) to constitute a minyan.  Similarly, someone in a doorway who
would be outside if the door were closed it not counted.

That said, it continues that if there is a minyan in the room that
anyone within earshot may answer.  It points out that the Gemora in
Sotah says that even an iron wall cannot stop G-d from hearing his



From: Joel Rich <JRich@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Jun 2005 05:26:19 -0400
Subject: Brachot out of time

>Rabbi Zelig Epstein (Rosh Yeshiva, Shaar Hatorah, Queens), probably one
>of the senior Rosh Yeshivos in the US today, has ruled that one answers
>amen to brachos on videos.
>I learned this from the disconcerting vision of people from Kew Gardens
>watching their wedding video and answering all the brachos!
>Yossi Ginzberg

Did R' Epstein write this up/explain?  What about a lifelike digitally
faked video?

Joel rich


From: Akiva Miller <kennethgmiller@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Jun 2005 11:43:39 GMT
Subject: Re: Kiddush Levanah - Women

<chips@...> wrote <<< As others, over 35 years I have been in many
shuls in many cities with many different minhagym and different nusachs
- even a place where they had a rather large women's tefilah group with
leining - and have never seen a woman do Kiddush leVanah. >>>

In all of those varied places, how many of them had any women at all
show up for Maariv on Motzaei Shabbos? My guess is few to none.

My point is that it is quite possible that some women in those
communities DID say Kiddush Levana, and you simply didn't see it.

Akiva Miller


From: Akiva Miller <kennethgmiller@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Jun 2005 03:17:07 GMT
Subject: re: A note about maariv and shavuot

Mark Steiner wrote: <<< Note, however, that the Rambam in 30 chapters of
the Laws of Sabbath never mentions any obligation to extend the kedusha
of shabbat either at the beginning or the end.  Thus, the license to
daven ... early both Friday evening AND Saturday evening (before shabbat
is over), as well as the license to recite kiddush and havdalah "early",
has nothing to do with the question of when Shabbat begins or ends. A
fortiori this is true on Yom Tov. Thus, according to the Rambam, saying
maariv early on Shavuot does not end the sefirah period early. >>>

Maybe the Rambam doesn't mention these things, but the Shulchan Aruch
certainly does.

OTOH, that which the Shulchan Aruch says has long confounded me, as I am
unable to find a unifying principle which might explain some various
halachos which appear contradictory to me. Bear with me, please, as I

Let me begin by restating, in my own words, Mr. Steiner's main
point. That way, if I've misunderstood him, I hope that it will become
immediately obvious, and you don't need to bother reading the rest of
this post.

I think his main point was: One can say Maariv and Havdala late Saturday
afternoon. This relieves one of the obligation to do those things after
dark, and does not affect the day's status in any way: even if one does
say havdala, the day is still Shabbos. So too, Mr. Steiner seems to say,
if one recites Maariv or Kiddush in the late afternoon of Omer 49, that
will not affect the status of the day, and he will still have his Seven
Complete Weeks.

Okay, now for my comments and questions.

First, although the Mishna Brura (293:9) tells us that we don't do it
nowadays, the Shulchan Aruch (293:3) most certainly does say that under
very pressing circumstances one can say Maariv and Havdala on Saturday
afternoon after Plag Hamincha. This does not somehow allow him to start
doing melacha while the sun has still not yet set. It merely means that
when night does arrive, he can immediately eat and do melacha wituout
performing and additional rituals.

But why? Why is this allowed? Isn't it an insult to the Shabbos to
welcome the workweek so early?

Perhaps the answer is that Havdala does *not* constitute "welcoming the
workweek early". Check the text: Havdala praises Hashem for the
distinction between Shabbos and the workdays, but it does *explicitly*
say that the workdays have in fact arrived. I'll admit that we generally
understand Havdala to refer to a workweek that has already arrived; but
it is not explicit in the words.

This is comparable to another situation: When necessary, one can light
Shabbos candles on Erev Shabbos wth a "tenai" - a stipulation that she
is not personally accepting Shabbos yet. Even though she recites the
words thanking Hashem for the mitzva to light Shabbos candles, those
words don't *explicitly* contradict the day's status as Erev
Shabbos. Sure, she *usually* begins Shabbbs with candle lighting, but
occasionally, if necessary, the words of the bracha can be interpreted
as referring to lighting the Shabbos candles now, on Erev Shabbos, in
preparation so that they will be lit and lighting the home when Shabbos

Applying this halacha to Yom Tov sheds an interesting light on this
topic. It turns out that one *can* light Yom Tov candles early,
including the bracha "L'hadlik ner", while stipulating that she is not
yet accepting Yom Tov. But this only applies if she does not also say
"Shehechiyanu". This stipulation does not work if one says
"Shehechiyanu" (Shmiras Shabbos K'Hilchasa 43:23, quoting Kaf Hachayim
514:112 and others).

Now, what makes Shehechiyanu different from L'Hadlik Ner? My guess is
that it is because Shehechiyanu includes the words "l'zman hazeh -- to
THIS time". There is absolutely no way to praise HaShem for allowing us
to reach "this time" while stipulating that the holiday is not yet
beginning. L'Hadlik Ner Shel Yom Tov can be easily understood as
referring to a Yom Tov which will begin later, but there's no way to do
that with Shehechiyanu.

This logic is the same as what I suggested about Maariv and Havdala on
Shabbos afternoon: They talk about what will happen later on, but
there's nothing which explicitly says that the night has already
arrived. If so, then the same logic ought to apply to Maariv and Kiddush
on Friday afternoon as well. Those prayers talk about what will happen
later on, but don't require the night to have already begun, so it seems
logical that one might even be able to say Maariv and Kiddush on Friday
afternoon, while stipulating that he is not yet accepting Shabbos.

But saying Maariv and Kiddush on Erev Yom Tov afternoon --- Shavuos, for
example! --- is very different than saying Maariv and Kiddush on Friday
afternoon. This is because the Shabbos prayers don't explicitly require
Shabbos to have begun, while the Yom Tov prayers do explicitly include
the phrase "b'yom Chag HaShavuos HAZEH" - just like in Shehechiyanu!
There is no way to say Maariv or Kiddush on Shavuos without accepting
the day. And if that is done earlier than required, it will cut off the
end of the 49th day.

But my logic is wrong. Two paragraphs ago, I suggested that one could
say Maariv and Kiddush on Friday afternoon while stipulating that he
does not want Shabbos to begin yet. The problem is that the Shulchan
Aruch 263:11 says that "if an individual went and said the Shabbos
prayers on Friday afternoon, he has accepted Shabbos and is forbidden to
do melacha, even if he says that he does not want to accept
Shabbos". And the Mishna Brurah there (263:50) explains simply, "Even
though some holds that a stipulation works for candle lighting, davening
is different, because he mentions the holiness of Shabbos in it."

So what's the answer? As I wrote in the very beginning, there seems to
be a contradiction here.

If I can't mention the One Who makes the Shabbos holy unless that
holiness is already present, or is becoming present, then why can I
mention the One Who separates between holy and ordinary, and between
Shabbos and the six days of work, even in a sitation where that
separation will not occur until a few hours in the future?

And if I can say Havdala without affecting the status of the day, I
ought to be able to say Kiddush without affecting the status of the day.

Any guesses?

Akiva Miller


From: Tzvi Stein <Tzvi.Stein@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Jun 2005 00:49:23 -0400
Subject: Re: Second Job / Volunteering

A question was asked if it was ethical to work at a second job or
volunteer, since it may be "stealing" from the primary job.  On the
contrary, it seems to me that if the primary employer interferes with
the way an employee spends his time off the job, as long as it does not
affect their time on the job, that empolyer is stealing from the
empolyee!  They are only paying the employee for a certain number of
hours a day.  If they try to control more than they are paying for, that
is stealing!


From: Shmuel Himelstein <himels@...>
Date: Tue, 28 Jun 2005 07:53:40 +0200
Subject: Technology in the service of Halachah

This appeared in a local Jerusalem eMail group:
> A kollel fellow will learn the entire Shas Mishnayos (Six Orders of Oral
> Law) for the Yahrtzeit (Memorial) of a dear departed relative or friend.
> Or if you know of someone who has Shloshim coming but cannot complete
> Shas Mishnayos in time, we will try to get it done!
> Has also been helpful for other Yeshuos!
> Limud Gemorah or Kaddish also available.
> Fees acording to amount of work, and time factors.

Most enterprising, no?
Shmuel Himelstein


End of Volume 48 Issue 72