Volume 57 Number 78 
      Produced: Wed, 13 Jan 2010 07:32:50 EST

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

A liturgical conundrum (3)
    [Martin Stern  Martin Stern  Menashe Elyashiv]
Bimkom Levi 
    [Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz]
Chareidi Internet 
    [Mordechai Horowitz]
Davning one's own nusach in a "foreign" environment 
    [Carl Singer]
delayed brit milah timing 
    [Martin Stern]
Educational Resources for Tu B'Shvat (The New Year for Trees) 
    [Jacob Richman]
Kosher Gatorade 
    [Ben Katz]
Qualifications for sitting on a Bet Din 
Shabbat Elevators (2)
    [Orrin Tilevitz  Martin Stern]
Shabbat elevators, Refrigerators, etc etc (2)
    [Mark Goldin  Martin Stern]


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Sat, Jan 9,2010 at 04:01 PM
Subject: A liturgical conundrum

On Fri, Jan 8,2010, Ken Bloom <kbloom@...> wrote:
> In the Ashkenaz siddur there is a special list of days (separate from
> the days when Tachanun is omitted) when Lamnatzeach (Psalm 20) and El
> Erech Apayim is omitted, i.e. there are two different lists of days for
> omitting parts of the service.

This has always puzzled me. Can anyone suggest the connection between them?

Martin Stern

From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Sat, Jan 9,2010 at 04:01 PM
Subject: A liturgical conundrum

On Thu, Jan 7,2010, "Daniel Walker" <rabbiwalker@...> wrote:
> 5. If I remember correctly the Aruch Hashulchan says that one should
> say it standing as it is a techina.

The Magein Avraham 134:1 rules that keil erech apayim is to be said standing
and refers to the Mateh Mosheh (221) who states that this is because it is a
form of viddui.

Martin Stern

From: Menashe Elyashiv <Menashe.Elyashiv@...>
Date: Sun, Jan 10,2010 at 02:01 AM
Subject: A liturgical conundrum

The oldest source is the Mahzor Vitry: the Shaliah Sibbur (reader) says 
the first one, and the congregation says the second one. Sometime the 
Ashkenazi minhag changed because  in the early printed siddurim only one 
of them was printed. In 1647 and 1694 both were printed, one as Ashkenaz 
and one as Polin


From: Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz <sabbahillel@...>
Date: Sun, Jan 10,2010 at 02:01 PM
Subject: Bimkom Levi

I mistyped originally, that calling the same kohen for the second
aliyah when there is no Levi was a custom. I was mistaken in my
wording. It is a halacha (law) as brought down in the Shulchan Orech
and Mishnah Brurah in order that people would not think that the first
kohen was not a valid one. An interesting point involving that is
found in the following footnote from

(2) This requires a little background information which was actually
supposed to go into yesterday's footnotes. There is a rule that we are
not supposed to give Aliyos to two Kohanim consecutively because we
are concerned that observers will think that the reason we had to call
the second Kohen is because the first Kohen was found to be
disqualified from the Kehuna ("Priesthood"). The Shulchan Aruch 135:10
writes that the custom is that once we've called up a Kohen, Levi, and
Yisroel (a Jew who is neither Kohen or Levi) for the first 3 of the 7
Aliyos, we may call up other Kohanim (Priests) as long as a Yisroel is
called in between. The reason for this is that observers would
conclude that if the first Kohen was disqualified, people would have
complained before the next Aliyah; once the Yisroel has been called up
after the first of the additional Kohanim, the calling up of the
second additional Kohen after the Yisroel would not lead to doubts
about the first Kohen's status. Furthermore, the fact that a Kohen is
being called up for an Aliyah which is usually given to a Yisroel,
will not lead people to question his validity, because the one who
calls him up declares explicitly that the person is a Kohen. The same
rules apply to giving Aliyos to Leviim (Levites).

The Rema, however, brings another opinion which rules that one may
only call up additional Kohanim or Leviim after the required 7 Aliyos.
The Mishna Berura 135:36 adds that according to most Acharonim (later
Halachic Authorities), even when we are adding more Aliyos to the
required seven, we should only call up a Kohen or Levi for the final
Aliyah of the reading or for Maftir (as we saw in yesterday's

The following footnote helps explain what we do on Simchas Torah.

(3) If it is not possible for the Kohen or Levi to receive the final
Aliyah or Maftir, we can rely on the opinion brought by the Shulchan
Aruch that an additional Kohen or Levi can be called even as part of
the first seven Aliyos. If this happens, the Mishna Berura 135:37
writes that we should precede as if we were beginning the order of
Aliyos again, that is, after the additional Kohen, we should call up a
Levi, and then a Yisroel.

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


From: Mordechai Horowitz <mordechai@...>
Date: Fri, Dec 25,2009 at 01:01 PM
Subject: Chareidi Internet

In M-J V57#64, Martin writes:
> Labelling those who decry the possible dangers inherent in unlimited access
> as 'extremists in the haredi world' is hardly a rational argument. Whether
> one agrees with a blanket ban or not, the problems that it can cause are
> real and must be addressed.
There are risks in everything.  

Should we ban phones because some people use them to arrange affairs?

Should we ban regular mail because you can order Playboy to be delivered by the

At what point do we say enough is enough of these bans.  And indeed halacha has
the concept we don't make prohibitions the community will ignore.  Guess what -
everyone is ignoring this psak [Halachic decision --Mod.].  All it has done is
kill the livelihood of a handful of charedim who had the "gall" to go out and
work at a charedi website rather than hang around in yeshiva living off charity

The problem with adults is self control.  Either you go to webyeshiva.org or
playboy.com.  Somehow I manage to do it.  I also don't have affairs with women
at work, even though there are haredi Rabbis who ban working with women for that
reason.  I can even get on an Israeli bus with women on it and not have sex in
the aisle even though the extremists in the haredi community insist women must
be go to the back of the bus lest the weak yeshiva boy (who should in yeshiva
learning, shouldn't he)....

Obviously the charedi yeshivot have completely failed in teaching their students
how to relate with women given their need for these fences.  IMHO the solution
is don't be charedi but if they don't choose that route they need to reevaluate
how they are educating their young men if they must be fully and completely
controlled externally in every aspect of their lives otherwise they can't be

I use the term extremists because I know most charedim also reject these well
publicized bans by the self declared gedolim.  Most do use the internet (as I
noted many haredi websites still up), have members who work at normal jobs
(especially in the US), and somehow manage to use a regular bus (whether in
Brooklyn or Jerusalem) with no problems with the women.  

The fact is we know many of these bans are actually political or economic in
nature. Whether its someone pushing a ban a concert by a competing tzedaka
(ended when the organizers quietly donate money to the right people to end the
ban) or websites competing with haredi print media there almost always is an
ulterior motive to these bans.

Chazal gave us enough prohibitions that do work (avoid yichud, don't look at
naked women) that we have no need to follow newfangled made up prohibitions that
past generations never had. If the new is forbidden as some argue, I say new
prohibitions are forbidden.


From: Carl Singer <carl.singer@...>
Date: Fri, Jan 8,2010 at 11:01 AM
Subject: Davning one's own nusach in a "foreign" environment

I missed much of the prior discussion -- but there are serious issues about
purposely (and loudly, I presume) asserting one's own nusach when davening
with an established minyan that employs a different nusach.   Even such
"quiet" things as whether or not to wear tephillin on Chol HaMoed --  I know
someone whose practice is different from that of the minyan that he attends
and thus he sequesters himself in the (heretofore) empty ezras nashim on
Chol HaMoed.

There are several sefardim (Iraqi) who daven in our shule.  They, per their
custom, sit when putting on Tephillin - but this isn't in any way
disruptive.  When they are saying kaddish -- they say the Ashkenas kaddish
aloud.  Whether they say anything else to themselves is another matter.

Consider now this situation:  You and 9 of your friends are in a synagogue
during off hours and decide to daven as a minyan -- if you are aware of the
minhag of your host synagogue, must you adhere to it -- or can you daven
your own minhag -- the difference here being that no members of the host
minyan are present.

BTW -- re: language of "insists" -- when I was at the Uof M in 1970,  I
recall that my Michigan friends were STEADFAST in their support of "Big
Blue" whereas my Ohio friends (I'm from Cleveland) were STUBBORN "Buckeye"
fans.   Words have power.


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Sat, Jan 9,2010 at 04:01 PM
Subject: delayed brit milah timing

On Leah Fri, Jan 8,2010, S. R. Gordon <leah@...> wrote:
> The topic that seems to have the least consensus is about a name, and
> using that name, before the bris.  If anyone has more thoughts on that,
> and/or on naming conventions (tell before the bris?  tell the siblings
> before the bris?  tell before the naming, for a girl?) I would be interested
> in learning about that.

AFAIK the parents decide the name for which they are credited with special
siyata dishmaya [heavenly guidance] and do not disclose it to anyone else.
Unfortunately meddling grandparents try to pressure them in their choice.
This is terribly wrong. While they might make a suggestion, this should be
done in the most tactful and non-threatening manner possible. Personally I
have never done so. Not disclosing it in advance is one way to avoid such

There are differing customs regarding whether the name should come from the
father's or mother's family though it is generally accepted that they should
alternate in order to avoid friction. However, in the last resort it is the
parents who decide and they can choose as they see fit; nobody else should

Martin Stern


From: Jacob Richman <jrichman@...>
Date: Mon, Jan 11,2010 at 08:01 PM
Subject: Educational Resources for Tu B'Shvat (The New Year for Trees)

Hi Everyone!

Tu B'Shvat, the New Year for Trees, falls on the 15th of the
Hebrew month of Shvat, January 30 this year (5770 / 2010). 
This Jewish mini-holiday is of major importance to our 
appreciation of Nature and our relationship to it.
It is customary to plant trees and partake of the fruits of 
the land of Israel to mark the occasion. This year Tu B'Shvat
falls on Shabbat - therefore many of the holiday activities this 
year will take place on Thursday, January 28.

Jewish Trivia Quiz: Tu B'Shvat

Which fruit is used to make wine ? 
When did Kabbalists originate the Tu B'shvat Seder ? 
How many glasses of wine are drunk at the Tu B'Shvat seder ? 
What branch of a tree did the dove bring back after the flood ? 
How many days does the Hebrew month of Shvat have ? 
What is associated with both Chanukah and Tu B'Shvat ? 
In Israel, what happens to trees starting on the 15th of Shvat ? 
Since 1901, how many trees has the Jewish National Fund 
planted in Israel ? 
According to the Torah, which fruits did the spies bring to the 
children of  Israel in the wilderness ? 

The above questions are examples from the multiple choice 
Flash quiz. There are two levels of questions, two timer settings.
Both kids and adults will find it enjoyable.

The Jewish Clipart Database: Tu B'Shvat

Whether you need a picture for your child's class project, 
a graphic for your synagogue, Hillel or JCC Tu B'Shvat
announcement, the Jewish Clipart Database has the pictures
for you. You can copy, save and print the graphics in
three different sizes. 

My Hebrew Song Book - Tu B'Shvat Hebrew songs 

Tu B'Shvat Hebrew songs (with vowels) for viewing and printing. 
All songs are in graphic format so you do not need Hebrew 
installed to view or print them. 

Tu B'Shvat YouTube Videos

Over 25 YouTube videos about Tu B'Shvat.

The above sites have something for everyone, but if that is not 
enough, I posted on my website 48 links about Tu B'Shvat, 
from history and customs to graphics and recipes.
Site languages include English, Hebrew, Russian, Spanish,
French, Portuguese and German 
The web address is:


Please forward this message to relatives and friends, 
so they may benefit from these holiday resources.



From: Ben Katz <BKatz@...>
Date: Fri, Jan 8,2010 at 05:01 PM
Subject: Kosher Gatorade

From: Steven Oppenheimer <steven.oppenheimer@...>
> Gatorade is supposedly becoming kosher.  See the following news item:

Curmudgeonly comment: Obtaining a hechsher and becoming kosher are 2 different
things.  Many products without a hechsher are kosher and unfortunately there are
mistakenly labeled products.


From: <rubin20@...>
Date: Wed, Jan 6,2010 at 10:01 AM
Subject: Qualifications for sitting on a Bet Din

In M-J V57#73, Carl asked:
> ...can a judge on a Bet Din hear a case involving, say, a cousin or
> in-law?

See Coshen Misphat Chapter 7 [in Shulchan Aruch Choshen Mishpat Siman 7, I think
the particular s'if would be 9 --Mod.].


From: Orrin Tilevitz <tilevitzo@...>
Date: Sat, Jan 9,2010 at 05:01 AM
Subject: Shabbat Elevators

I know that this is a CLOR question, but for those who believe that being an
elevator is problematic (as opposed to absolutely forbidden), what about the
I booked a room in a hotel for shabbat on the 11th floor, fully prepared to walk
up and down. I have never been on an elevator on shabbat in my life. When I got
here I found out that not only was the entrance to the stairs, on the way up,
accessible only with a magnetic card (and the bemused hotel staff was more than
happy to swipe me in), but I couldn't get out of the stairwell without a
magnetic card. So the choice was having the staff swipe me into the elevator
(and push the button) or staying in my room all of the shabbat.

From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Sat, Jan 9,2010 at 04:01 PM
Subject: Shabbat Elevators

On Thu, Jan 7,2010, Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz <sabbahillel@...> wrote:

Subject: elevators on Shabbat

> There is the story of people who
> become so used to the eruv that they forget to wear the tallis when
> spending Shabbos in a place that does not have an eruv.

This is one of the problems with 'blind' acceptance of an eruv. IMHO
everyone should ask themselves if they really need to do so but, if they do
not, they have opinions on which to rely and should not be condemned.

Martin Stern


From: Mark Goldin <goldinfamily@...>
Date: Fri, Jan 8,2010 at 05:01 PM
Subject: Shabbat elevators, Refrigerators, etc etc

>Finally the point that has been bothering me. Heating with gas or oil is
>obviously a d'orita type of action on Shabbat. So we invoke pikoach 
>nefesh? Why is this different than throwing a log on a fire or maybe this 
>is permissible too.

There is a huge difference between the two.  Opening the door of your house is
a) indirectly causing the heating to come on at a later time and is therefore a
grama action and b) intention must be there in order for it to be considered
melacha.  When you open the door of your house your intention is simply to
arrive or depart, not, one hopes, to adjust the thermostat.  

Throwing a log on the fire is a direct, considered act.  There are other
differences between an appliance and a house - opening the door of an appliance
where what you are doing is affecting the functioning of that appliance is
considered by the poskim to be different to opening the door of a house which in
turn has an indirect effect on an appliance (ie your heating).

There are probably other differences and consideration but I am at the extent of
my knowledge.

>>But whole body of halacha on electricity is make believe halacha and
>>everyone is being mdachdek with multiple posts on little nuances on >>Shabbat

Do you care to elaborate?  There is a huge body of work (halacha) on electricity
& Shabbat with a sound basis and magnificent analysis by gedolei hador including
R. Moshe Feinstein & The Chazon Ish.  It is no more "make believe" than any
other category of halacha.

Mark Goldin
Los Angeles

From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Sat, Jan 9,2010 at 04:01 PM
Subject: Shabbat elevators, Refrigerators, etc etc

On Thu, Jan 7,2010, Richard Fiedler <richardfiedler@...> wrote:
> But whole body of halacha on electricity is make believe halacha and everyone
> is being mdachdek with multiple posts on little nuances on Shabbat elevators.

This is probably poorly expressed and does not represent Richard's true
meaning but statements like "halacha on electricity is make believe
halacha", when the status of electricity on Shabbat is generally agreed by
poskim nowadays, sounds unsuitable for an Orthodox discussion group like

Martin Stern


End of Volume 57 Issue 78