Volume 49 Number 37
                    Produced: Thu Aug  4  6:45:14 EDT 2005

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Chabad Kadeishim
         [Michael Mirsky]
Kaddish Minhag Chabad (2)
         [Martin Stern, Tom Buchler]
More olim pictures and why do I post them
         [Jacob Richman]
         [Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz]
Pressure to buy: Coveting
         [Shalom Carmy]
Tumtum, Aylonit, etc
         [ben katz]
Your Minhag in our Place
         [Menashe Elyashiv]


From: Michael Mirsky <mirskym@...>
Date: Wed, 3 Aug 2005 12:53:44 -0400
Subject: Chabad Kadeishim

Anonymous wrote about the practice of Chabadniks who come to his shul
and add kadeishim and spit on the floor during Aleynu.  He is surprised
at their lack of sensitivity.

There is a large Chabad community here and oftentimes members come to
our shul. I have *never* seen what he describes at our shul.  The only
faux pas now and then is when a Chabadnik is given Hagba and he raises
the sefer and then immediately places it back on the shulchan as is
their minhag.

It appears to me that the majority of Chabadniks are baalei teshuva.
(This is just an observation, do others agree?).  For baalei teshuva,
things are often either black and white (ie. my way is the right way),
or there is simply ignorance of the minhagim of others since the only
exposure to Yiddishkeit is through Chabad.

Most people, if discreetly taken aside and explained the local minhag,
will comply willingly.  But sometimes there's the minority who has
another agenda.

Michael Mirsky


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Aug 2005 12:31:05 +0100
Subject: Kaddish Minhag Chabad

on 3/8/05 11:08 am, Anonymous wrote:
>> Too many Chabad advocates, who happen to be davening in a non-Chabad
>> minyan, will mumble a mishna under their breath and then say a kaddish
>> d'rabbanan.
> Rabbi Teitz sounds like (and I apologize if this is an act of
> projection) he is speaking out of frustration.  If so, I share that same
> frustration.
> ...
> Again the above lacks a respect for practices and customs that differ
> from theirs (as well as incredulity and offense by the regular members
> of the Shule who were never exposed to this).  Is it done with disregard
> for others sensitivities?  I'd like to think not, but frankly I'm not
> quite sure my giving the benefit of the doubt is justified.
> Can't the movement and its teachers sensitize its adherents that there
> are other Jews out there who don't say 16 Kaddeshim a day

This problem is not restricted to Chabad. In our shul only one person
says each kaddish yet visitors often ignore this.

Surely anyone attending a shul for the first time should enquire about
its minhagim and not assume that only his ones are of any importance,
something which goes against the ruling of the Maharil about 650 years
ago (Minhagei Maharil, Machon Yerushalayim edition pp. 339-340) that
"one may not alter the local custom of a community, not even by using
nigunim to which it is not accustomed." This is ruled lehalochah by the
Rema (Orach Chaim 619.1) who added "or piyutim" to the prohibition.

The Maharil backed up his ruling by recounting a frightening personal

It seems that he was asked to act one year as sheliach tsibbur on the
Yamim Noraim in Regensburg where he followed their customs punctiliously
except that he added one extra selichah in Mussaph because it was
composed by a godol who had been a previous rov of the town, despite
being told that it was not said there. When he returned to his home
town, he discovered that his daughter had passed away that Yom Kippur
and attributed her death to his infringement of Regensburg's minhag!

Martin Stern

From: Tom Buchler <tbuchler@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Aug 2005 17:47:16 -0400
Subject: Re: Kaddish Minhag Chabad

>From: Anonymous
> Too many Chabad advocates, who happen to be davening in a non-Chabad
> minyan, will mumble a mishna under their breath and then say a kaddish
> d'rabbanan.
> ....
> I often wonder if this behavior is motivated by ignorance and/or
> insensitivity or a certain hubris that wants everyone to do it the
> "right way" (see, e.g., the introduction to Chabad's siddur Thillat
> Hashem).
> ...davening, the Chabad visitors spit on the floor, which in our Shule
> happens to be carpeted.

It has been my experience that by no means do Chabadniks have a monopoly
on ignorance regarding the specific customs of a shul that they are
visiting. After all, it isn't as though guests receive, read and sign
off on the local-customs guidebook on their way in the door. I daven in
a Chabad shul in Key West that is mostly populated by Sephardim. (Y'all
really must come down and visit us for Shabbes!) The custom for most of
the davening is for one congregant to read every word out loud, while
others read (wherever they are holding) in a nearly silent murmer. I
can't tell you how often guests come in, see a room of a dozen men daven
very quitely while one person is davening aloud, and begin davening
quite loudly themselves, and at whatever place they are holding. One
recent visitor began loudly studying Mishnayos. He was by no means
associated with Chabad. Virtually all Sephardi visitor would realize
what is going on. Many of the Chabad-originated visitors tend to
actually realize what the local custom is and daven more softly than
they might in their home Shteibl. Many Ashkenazi visitors have no clue.

I do like the idea that Chabad movement should sensitize its adherents
regarding the customs of other Jews. This is a great and novel idea. In
fact, I wasn't aware that any movements teach the specific minhagim of
other movements so that their members can behave in a more sensitive way
when visiting other shuls. If we all did, we would probably have seen
Mashiach a long time ago.



From: Jacob Richman <jrichman@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Aug 2005 19:45:42 +0200
Subject: More olim pictures and why do I post them

Hi Everyone!

Congratulations to the new olim that arrived from the USA today at Ben
Gurion airport.

I posted articles and pictures on my site at:

If you do not see August 3, 2005 on the top of the web page, hold the
control key and press the F5 key to refresh your browser.  Press the F11
for full screen view.

After viewing a picture, you can press your browser back button or hold
the alt key and press the left arrow key to go back.

Some readers may be asking: Why am I posting so many pictures of the
olim ?

Here are a few reasons why:

1. Each individual person that makes aliyah is changing Jewish
history. One more person living in Eretz Yisrael has the potential to
change the world. These are historical events that I feel are worth

2. Each individual picture has the potential to influence a relative or
friend or co-worker to think about following in the olim's footsteps and
making aliyah.

3. The olim, relatives and friends may be able to relive the excitement
when they look at the pictures in a few days, weeks, months or years.

4. During these hard times in Israel, the pictures of olim arriving to
the country, give a boost to everyones spirit in Israel.  Many people
have written me how the pictures make them feel good and proud of the

5. Aliyah is in!! The numbers are growing!!  Many consider aliyah one of
the most important mitzvot.  It should be worth a picture or two.

Special Offer: 
Free pictures of your family on the aliyah website if you make aliyah. 
Guests meeting olim during these very early morning arrivals may 
also participate. This offer is open to the next 8 million olim from 
around the world or until I run out of disk space on my web hosting
site :-)
When sending pictures, please note the date of the pictures.
Pictures need to be in jpg format. If the total of all pictures is
over 5 megabytes, please send me an email before sending
the pictures.

May the aliyah from the USA (and the rest of the world) grow and bring
more Jews back to their homeland, Eretz Yisrael.

Have a good day,


From: Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz <sabba.hillel@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Aug 2005 12:44:53 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Re: Polygamy

A google search on Cherem of Rabbeinu Gershom polygamy finds



> Mail.Jewish Mailing List  Volume 31 Number 89
> Produced: Thu Mar 30  5:41:14 US/Eastern 2000
>-------------- begin quoted message ------------
>From: Zev Sero <Zev@...>
> Subject: Cherem d'Rabbeinu Gershom
>... cut to save bandwidth ...
>The Shulchan Aruch (EH 1) says that the cherem was to have effect `ad
>sof ha'elef', and some people have evidently taken that to mean `until
>the end of a millennium', i.e. 1000 years after it was enacted, but the
>correct translation is `until the end of *the* millennium', i.e. the
>cherem expired at the end of the year 5000, or about 300 years before
>the Mechaber's own time.  The Mechaber says, however, that those
>communities who accepted the cherem in the first place have continued to
>obey it even after the expiry date, so the issue is moot.  The `cherem'
>now has the force of minhag, a minhag which has now lasted longer than
>the original cherem did.

Nowadays the State of Israel has accepted this for Ashkenazim, Sephardim
and Edot Hamizrach.  I understand that new immigrants, who are already
married, were able to remain married.  It was only new marriages that
were forbidden.

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


From: <carmy@...> (Shalom Carmy)
Date: Wed,  3 Aug 2005 10:49:46 -0400
Subject: Pressure to buy: Coveting

R. Aaron Levine has a forthcoming article in Tradition on the ethics of
telemarketing. He discusses the question of whether hard sell comes
under lo Tahmod.


From: ben katz <bkatz@...>
Date: Wed, 03 Aug 2005 10:58:57 -0500
Subject: Re: Tumtum, Aylonit, etc

>From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
>on 28/7/05 4:53 am, I wrote:
> > Halacha discusses much rarer conditions such as tumtum, a person whose
> > sex cannot be determined, and androgynos, someone with both male and
> > female genitalia, quite apart from the aylonit who would appear to be
> > female but who never reaches puberty (X-Y dysgenesis?), most of which, I
> > would imagine, will never be encountered by those reading this posting
> > other than paediatricians and other medical personnel, but only
> > discusses homosexual behaviour.
>Apart from androgynos which is the medical condition known as
>hermaphroditism, I wonder if any experts on mail-jewish can explain what
>these categories are in terms of current medical knowledge as I am not
>quite sure as to precisely what they are.

         This is a very complicated topic, dealt with by specialists
(generally in endocrinology) and about which whole books have been
written.  The Sages understanding of these conditions was superficial,
based as it was on the medicine known at the time and only on
observation rather than experimentation.  I believe they approached
these individuals as either having characteristics of both sexes
(androgymous) or being of indeterminate sex (tumtum).

         Today specialists talk of genetic sex (that determined by the
sex chromosomes) and the phenotypic sex (how the person appears on the
outside); the latter does not always match the former, unfortunately.
The most dramatic example of a "mismatch" is when there is a problem
expressing male sex hormones.  Since the "default" option of the fetus
is to make a girl, there are examples of phenotypically normal females
(who are infertile of course) with XY genotypes and undescended testes,
who for all intents and purposes are females.  Generally, if the
condition is discovered (usually due to amenorrhea - not having periods)
the testes are removed (because they have a malignant potential having
sat in the abdominal cavity for so many years) and the person is NOT
informed that she is "really" a male, for obvious reasons (bringing back
an old thread where I argued that doctors must not always tell the

Ben Z. Katz, M.D.
Children's Memorial Hospital, Division of Infectious Diseases
2300 Children's Plaza, Box # 20, Chicago, IL 60614
e-mail: <bkatz@...>


From: Menashe Elyashiv <elyashm@...>
Date: Wed, 3 Aug 2005 15:02:10 +0300 (IDT)
Subject: Your Minhag in our Place

We have had Habadnikim trying to say their extra Kaddishim, as we do not
say Kaddish after Aleinu, rather before Aleinu, and I told them NOT
HERE!  In a different place, there is a small Beit Kenesset, with a
mixed Kollel.  One Erev Shabbat, the Tora checker found the Tora
corrected (!) from daka to daka i.e. there are 2 versions, aleph or
hay. This was a serious problem, because one has to correct mistakes,
but this was not a mistake, just a wrong correction. We were sure who
did it - a Habadnik who wanted it to be written his way, and he admitted
it. If the owner of the Tora was to find out, he would for sure take
back his Tora. No local Rabbi could answer us, the Rav was able to ask
R. O. Yosef before Shabbat. He said to recorrect.

In an other case, the Hazzan on Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, against our
minhag, says Netana Tokef. He does not pay attention that nobody is
saying it with him.


End of Volume 49 Issue 37