Volume 59 Number 85 
      Produced: Thu, 25 Nov 2010 15:28:27 EST

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

Extent of Rabbinic Authority 
    [Stuart Wise]
Halachic Sexism 
    [Orrin Tilevitz]
Ho Chi Minh Yeshivot 
    [Jeanette  Friedman]
Shiluach Hakein (6)
    [Martin Stern  Josh Backon  Perets Mett  Gershon Dubin  Alex Heppenheimer  Michael Poppers]
Stipends for Torah students (4)
    [Avraham Walfish  Jeanette  Friedman  Frank Silbermann  Gilad J. Gevaryahu]
Tefillas keva [fixed] = exact wording?  
    [Ira L. Jacobson]
They also serve who sit and learn? 
    [Frank Silbermann]
Tzedakah Lottery tickets / Present value in Halacha 
    [Joel Rich]
Video on gay Orthodox Jews  
    [Lisa Liel]
Was Yael a soldier? 
    [Menashe Elyashiv]


From: Stuart Wise <Smwise3@...>
Date: Thu, Nov 25,2010 at 02:01 PM
Subject: Extent of Rabbinic Authority

My daughter who is in seminary in Israel told me that her school is planning a
shabbaton in a community called Tifrach. From what she learned, it is a very
plain, non-materialistic place, so much so that the local rabbis banned shopping
in a certain supermarket because it offered more than one flavor of yogurt,
since they felt that a person doesn't need more than one choice.  I would
appreciate if someone familiar with the community can  clarify if this is the
case, and if this is so, isn't it overreach of rabbinic authority.

Stuart Wise


From: Orrin Tilevitz <tilevitzo@...>
Date: Mon, Nov 22,2010 at 04:01 PM
Subject: Halachic Sexism

For those of you who haven't seen it by now, here is the text of criminal
defense attorney Bennett Epstein's request for a trial recess to attend the brit
milah of his grandson and Judge Kimba Wood's response. 


According to the Wall Street Journal Law Blog, which interviewed Mr. Epstein:

"on the topic of having to ask a noted female judge for time off to celebrate
the birth of a boy, but not a girl, Epstein minced no words: 'Look, the Jewish
religion is sexist. It just is. But I didn't make the rules!"


From: Jeanette  Friedman <FriedmanJ@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 08:01 AM
Subject: Ho Chi Minh Yeshivot

Ira L. Jacobson <laser@...> writes (MJ 59#84):

> Ms Friedman stated (MJ 59#82):

>> And since my father and Shlomo Lorincz  were the ones who cooked up 
>> the deal with Ben Gurion, so many years  ago during the Shoah  -- my 
>> father remained in Budapest because  he was busy with Reb Burachel 
>> giving out Mantello papers -- the deal  was for Talmidei Chachomim,

> I'm not very good at history, but it seems  to me that the Sho'a took
> place before the founding of the modern State of  Israel, so it is not
> likely that MK Shlomo Lorincz and PM David Ben-Gurion were working
> out deals to avoid service in Zahal during the Sho'a.

The deal was made with Ben Gurion in Mandate Palestine with the Sachnut,
Maybe we should call Rabbi Fabian Schoenfeld, one of the last of the group, 
just to double check. 
or read about the deal for 6.7 of Palestine visas that the Agudah made with 
the Sachnut in 1933, Ben Gurion even asked Lorincz to show him in the Torah
where if you learn you can't go to war.
Jeanette  Friedman, EIC
The Wordsmithy


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 02:01 AM
Subject: Shiluach Hakein

Lisa Liel <lisa@...> wrote (MJ 59#84):
> Why does the mitzvah of Shiluach Hakan (sending away the mother bird
> before taking its eggs or chicks) not seem to apply to egg-laying chickens?

AFAIK the mitsvah only applies to wild birds that "one chances to find on the
way ..." (Deut. 22,6)

Martin Stern

From: Josh Backon <backon@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 04:01 AM
Subject: Shiluach Hakein

Lisa Liel asked (MJ 59#84):

> Why does the mitzvah of Shiluach Hakan (sending away the mother bird
> before taking its eggs or chicks) not seem to apply to egg-laying chickens?

See: Aruch Hashulchan YOREH DEAH 292 #14. {"eino noheg b'ofot she'yesh b'alim
umitgadlim b'vateihem v'chatzroteihem" and specifically mentions chickens, geese
(that actually fly!) and pigeons. In other words for "birds" that are raised
domestically one is exempt (no mitzva of shiluach ha'ken). BTW he does indicate
that if the chicken in your chicken coop ran away to a field, you gave up hope
finding it (that is the bird became "hefker"), and you did find it brooding 
over an egg you WOULD be required to do shiluach he'ken.  See next paragraph
(#15) for further details.

Tell that to Irving Q. Pullet ! :-)

Josh Backon

From: Perets Mett <p.mett@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 06:01 AM
Subject: Shiluach Hakein

Lisa Liel (MJ 59#84) wrote:
> Why does the mitzvah of Shiluach Hakan (sending away the mother bird 
> before taking its eggs or chicks) not seem to apply to egg-laying chickens?

The posuk which introduces the mitsvo of shiluach hakein commences with "ki
yimotsei" = If one chances upon ...

This excludes (per Chazal  "prat limzumon") domesticated fowl which one does not
chance upon, but which you expect to find.

So there are no problems in raising birds for their eggs. See YD 292:2.

Perets Mett

From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 12:01 PM
Subject: Shiluach Hakein

I saved it as text and pasted below.  If you prefer I send to Michael Poppers,
please send his email.

From: Lisa Liel <lisa@...>
<<Why does the mitzvah of Shiluach Hakan (sending away the mother bird before 
taking its eggs or chicks) not seem to apply to egg-laying chickens?>>
Because the mitzva refers only to a bird one finds, as the verse says "ki yikarei 
kan tzipor". The Gemara excludes thereby a domesticated bird, such as your example.

From: Alex Heppenheimer <aheppenh@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 08:01 PM
Subject: Shiluach Hakein

In MJ 59#84, Lisa Liel <lisa@...> asked:

>Why does the mitzvah of Shiluach Hakan (sending away the mother bird 
>before taking its eggs or chicks) not seem to apply to egg-laying chickens?

The formal halachic reason is that it applies only when you find the nest in the 
wild: "'If you chance on it (Deut. 22:6)'- this excludes the case where it was 
previously available to you" (Chullin 139b).

A couple of possible rationales behind this:

* Rambam (Moreh Nevuchim 3:48) states that the reason for this mitzvah is 
because in most cases the eggs or chicks won't be usable anyway, so this way 
(since you know you can't keep the mother bird either) you might just leave the 
entire nest alone. In that case, we might argue that this consideration doesn't 
apply where you're specifically raising the birds in order to take their eggs.

* The Sefer Chinuch (mitzvah 545) states that the purpose of this mitzvah is to
prevent an entire species from being eradicated. Taking this logic further,
then, one would expect a farmer to anyway take that kind of care with collecting
the eggs or chicks from his coop, since after all he doesn't want to put himself
out of business.

* It could also be simply that the Torah carves out this exception, because 
otherwise it would be impractical to raise birds for their eggs.

Kol tuv,

From: Michael Poppers <MPoppers@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 10:01 PM
Subject: Shiluach Hakein

In MJ 59#84, Lisa Liel asked:

> Why does the mitzvah of Shiluach Hakan (sending away the mother bird
> before taking its eggs or chicks) not seem to apply to egg-laying chickens?

Footnote 30 on page
may help answer that question.

Michael Poppers


From: Avraham Walfish <rawalfish@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 03:01 AM
Subject: Stipends for Torah students

David Tzohar wrote (MJ 59#83):

> Bernard Raab wrote (MJ59#81) that Torah study without a program of
> demonstrated accomplishment and an end goal is self-indulgence.
> Unfortunately Torah learning cannot be subsumed under the American work
> ethic. The primary goal of Torah study is the study itself. This is called
> Torah lishmah. etc. etc.

I am surprised that David thinks we need instruction regarding the value or
nature of Torah lishmah. I believe that all subscribers to MJ understand this
quite well. The issue, as I see it, is whether we think that full-time students
of Torah are exempt from human nature. I have heard endless times from haredi
spokesmen (for Leah - I haven't yet heard a haredit spokeswoman :)) that
"you people have no idea how hard it is to devote oneself night and day to
learning Torah, and doubtless this is true for many yeshiva students. But
when supervision is lax - and in many yeshivot it is non-existent - even
devoted students may slacken off, especially when there are pressures of
family, finances, etc. When there is an entire segment of society built
around universal full-time study, nearly without regard for ability or
inclination, then unquestionably a high percentage of that subculture will
find themselves in yeshivot without the ability or drive, and in many cases
will be in yeshiva because everybody does it, and not because they have a
burning commitment to Torah lishmah. Add to this shidduch pressures
and social sanctions for those who don't conform, as well as education for
schoolchildren which fails to train them in the basic knowledge and skills
necessary for making a good living in contemporary society, and you have a
recipe for mass parasitism in the name of Torah.

There is also a psychological and ideological toll on products of this
setting and this education, but we'll save that for another time.

Bottom line: were yeshivot really serving only those who are there because
of their personal devotion to Torah lishmah, I think all MJ'ers - and many
others as well - would have no quarrel with their enjoying support from the
community and the government. When universal Torah study has subverted the
real purpose and meaning of Torah study, then the sanctity of Torah is
compromised and the anger at those who are siphoning off public funds to
support this is well-placed.


From: Jeanette  Friedman <FriedmanJ@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 08:01 AM
Subject: Stipends for Torah students

Rabbi Meir Wise <Meirhwise@...> wrote (MJ 59#84):

> So yes Ms Gordon, Ms Friedman et al - I agree - let's close down the
> kollelim and stop paying the rabbis and all hope for the best.


Also Bernard Raab <beraab@...> wrote (MJ 59#84):

> benkel-kvetchers?, in the inimitable words of Jeanette Friedman.

I didn't invent it.
Jeanette  Friedman, EIC
The Wordsmithy

Moderator's comment:

It would be appreciated if those making submissions would refrain from unfounded

From: Frank Silbermann <frank_silbermann@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 08:01 AM
Subject: Stipends for Torah students

David Tzohar wrote (MJ 59#83):
> The fact is that from the time of the Torah there has always been
> a cadre of Torah scholars who were supported by the Jewish People,
> from the Levites, through the example of Zevulun supporting Yissachar,
> the students of the great Babylonian acadamies etc.

One must also ask whether, for example, their parents and Torah teachers
taught the children of Yissachar to look upon the children of Zevulun,
their benefactors, with contempt and feelings of self-righteous superiority.

Frank Silbermann          Memphis, Tennessee

From: Gilad J. Gevaryahu <gevaryahu@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 10:01 AM
Subject: Stipends for Torah students

Rabbi Meir Wise (MJ 59#84) wrote:

> Some of our correspondents seem to have forgotten that during the battle
> with Midyan, Moshe Rabbenu had someone at the back studying Torah for every
> soldier he sent to fight. Dovid Hamelech continued this practice. In our own
> times Rav Simche Hakohen Kook together with the Bostoner Rebbe revived this
> concept. Closing the kollelim is therefore tantemount to endangering the lives
> of oursoldiers.

Please provide sources for:  Moshe Rabbenu had someone at the back studying
Torah for every soldierhe sent to fight [with Midyan]. I do not recall reading
this in my Hebrew Bible.

Please provide sources for: Dovid Hamelech continued this practice. I do not
recall reading this in my Hebrew Bible.

It sounds anachronistic to me. Where does this conclusion <<Closing the kollelim
is therefore tantemount to endangering the lives of oursoldiers>> stems from?

Gilad J. Gevaryahu


From: Ira L. Jacobson <laser@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 01:01 PM
Subject: Tefillas keva [fixed] = exact wording? 

Sammy Finkelman stated (MJ 59#84):

>Ira Jacobson wrote (MJ 59#81):
>> Sammy Finkelman stated (MJ 59#75):

>>> Keva actually is an adjective and not a noun, so it doesn't mean any
>>> of the things proposed.

>> Qeva is a noun meaning permanency.  As in "aseh torat'kha qeva,"

> Please, that's won't work.

That's won't?  :-D ;-)

WADR, this is a pointless argument, and I see no point in repeating myself.  I
understand that Hebrew is not like English.  Let me give an example of two
similar phrases that mean almost the same in Hebrew:

"Ezrah Tzarefat" is a citizen of France.  "Ezrah" is a noun (in nismakh), and
"Tzarefat" is a proper noun.

"Ezrah Tzarfati" is a French citizen.  "Ezrah" is a regular noun (in nifrad),
and "Tzarfati" is an adjective.  As I said, the meanings are nearly identical. 
But the parts of speech differ.

The word "qeva" is a noun.  It is never an adjective.  It is a segolate in form.

> It can't mean there the quality of "permanency"  "Something permanent"
> might be a possible noun, but it's really an adjectival clause (in English)
> in connection with the word Torah. (Even if some grammar writers would not
> use adjectival clause to describe this kind of thing)

I am once again sorry that the translation that I provided, which was the best I
could think of, does not sound good in English.  If you prefer, qeva means "a
permanent thing".  But qeva is a Hebrew noun no matter how it (or its
translation) sounds in English.

> I don't think "permanent" captures the meaning at all because something that
> is keva can be changed. It's not permanent, just linked.  "Regular" or
> "standard" is much closer than permanent but it is still not right. I think
> keva means it belongs with or has been connected to. It's really hard to
> capture the sense.

Yes, particularly if one is not very fluent in Hebrew.

If you wanted to use the rules of English grammar, you might have made a claim
that "qeva" is an adverb.  But alas it is not that either.

> What I meant when I said keva was an adjective was that it is a very general
> sort of word (as adjectives can be) and so its real meaning in a sentence
> depends very much on the context and it could easily not be apparent, because
> we don't don't know in what way the thing it is being applied to is, or
> should be, keva. There are some very general adjectives like that. You don't
> get nouns like that very easily. If you realize it is an adjective, you're
> already partway there to solving it.

If you still think it is an adjective, then I am sorry to say that you just
don't get it.  In my opinion, the concept is not all that complicated.  (I
realize that the repetition of "don't" is a typo and do not criticize that.)

>> or (modernly) tz'va qeva, which means the regular army.
> Regular is an adjective there. It modifies "army", although it really means
> the people not in for the 2 year term - the standing army.

Yes.  English is different from Hebrew.  Please note my example above.

Also, men serve in the IDF for three years compulsory service and not two.

>> The adjective is qavu`a, qevu'ah, qevu'im, qevu'ot.
> qavu`a, qevu'ah look like two different spellings of the same word.

They may look like that, but they are not.  "Qavu`a" (masculine gender) is
spelled qof vet vav ayin, while "qevu`ah" (feminine gender) is spelled qof vet
vav ayin heh.

> I think of "makom kevuah" - regular place, place you are accustomed to, or
> set aside. Makom keva would be the very general idea of having an established
> place.

That would be meqom qeva, where there is a sheva under the mem, and not a qamatz
as in maqom.  And your first group of words ought to have been "maqom qavu`a." 
There is no "heh".

> Makon Kevuah is an actual location.
>> qevu'im.
> I think that's a verb.

But it is an adjective.  (You keyed an N rather than an M, but that was just a
typo and is unrelated to the discussion.)

>> qevu'ot.
> These are one of the limited types of Jewish years possible. There are only
> 14, because not every day of the week that Rosh Hashonah can begin with can
> start any type of year. That's a noun actually, not an adjective.

No.  "Qevu`ot" is an adjective in this case.  If the noun is understood rather
than written specifically, that is just the nature of the Hebrew language.  I
have other interesting examples of this sort of thing, but there would probably
not be much point in giving them now.

> With a dot in the middle of the vav - I don't know how;d you'd spell it, it
> means regularity or permanence. Also a noun.

I don't know what you are referring to.  If you mean "qavu`a", it is an adjective.

> You see forms of the word keva used here in Hilchos Kiddush haChodesh 5:
> http://www.mechon-mamre.org/i/3805.htm

Yes.  5:3 "bet din qavu`a."  Qavu`a is an adjective.  Not much of a surprise.

But "qeva" does not seem to appear there at all, as far as I can see.  So I do
not understand why you made that reference.  (I do see the verb "qav`u" several
times, but we all agree that it is a verb -- or at least I hope we do.)

WADR, perhaps you could ask your Hebrew teacher.  Or use a dictionary.

Best wishes and no insult intended.



From: Frank Silbermann <frank_silbermann@...>
Date: Wed, Nov 24,2010 at 02:01 PM
Subject: They also serve who sit and learn?

Shmuel Himelstein wrote (MJ 59#82):
> The classic reason given for exempting Yeshiva students in Israel from going
> to the army is that by their learning they protect the country at least as
> well as (and even much better than) those in the army.
I remember during the second Gulf War Saddam Hussein was shooting SCUD missiles
at Israel, and President Bush was pressuring Israel to stay out of the war and
not respond.
My rabbi expressed his feelings of frustration at the situation, but I reminded
him that Israel's Prime Minister did manage to wrest a very important concession
from Bush.

"What was that?" he asked.  I replied, "He got Bush's permission to let the
Yeshiva students daven and study."
Frank Silbermann                    Memphis, Tennesee


From: Joel Rich <JRich@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 06:01 AM
Subject: Tzedakah Lottery tickets / Present value in Halacha

You'ld think an actuary would jump into the expected vs. present value
discussion but I'll simply point you to the Chavos Yair (61) in a lottery case
where one participant's ticket was left out and the winner offered to split the
prize. The Chavos Yair ruled the lottery must be redone since HKBH works through
the fair lottery (i.e. winning may be more than just luck [or expected value]).

Joel Rich


From: Lisa Liel <lisa@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 09:01 AM
Subject: Video on gay Orthodox Jews 

Mordechai Horowitz <mordechai@...> wrote (MJ 59#84):

> Leah wrote (MJ 59#82):
>> I saw this video, designed to encourage gay Jewish teenagers to refrain
>> from committing suicide (which is a statistically demonstrated problem)
> Homosexuality is a very dangerous lifestyle.  The suicide rate among 
> homosexuals is one of many reasons we need actively combat the radical
> homosexual agenda that seeks to legitimize this  dangerous lifestyle.

That is both absurd and offensive.  You might as well have pointed 
out in 1881 that being Jewish caused a lower lifespan.  Sure, but 
that was due to Cossacks murdering Jews.  To suggest that it's okay 
to persecute and shun people for a trait they are born with, and then 
use their higher suicide rate (caused by the persecution and shunning) as 
an argument for the trait itself being the problem, is simply a case of 
blaming the victim.

> Good news there are jewish groups out there to help get anyone 
> caught in this lifestyle to get out:
> http://www.jonahweb.org/index.php

JONAH is quackery.  Harmful quackery.  People who have been subjected 
to their medieval practices have attempted, and in some cases 
succeeded, in taking their own lives.

> And just as parents would reject a doctor who said cancer isn't a 
> disease its a lifestyle so too they need to reject those quacks who 
> for political reasons discourage medical treatment for their 
> children caught in this deadly lifestyle.

Actually, they need to reject those quacks who for religious and 
political reasons encourage the psychological equivalent of bleeding 
patients.  The Torah is very clear that doctors trump rabbis when it 
comes to the determination of medical fact.

> It may be difficult to find a competent counselor and the radical 
> gay activists act as thought police (for example having students who 
> reject the gay agenda expelled from counseling programs) intimidate 
> those who seek a cure for this illness into silence. But there is 
> hope and people need to seek help where available.

It's amazing that anyone pushing the JONAH agenda would accuse others 
of intimidation.  Maybe that sort of post could be saved for Purim, 
when things are supposed to be topsy-turvy.



From: Menashe Elyashiv <Menashe.Elyashiv@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23,2010 at 03:01 AM
Subject: Was Yael a soldier?

Was Yael, who killed Sisra, a combet soldier? If so, why did she not cut 
off his head or stab him in his heart with his sword? Rather, she took a 
harder way - she nailed his head. Many years ago I saw (but do not 
remember where) that she did not want to use a weapon, because of "klei 
gever" (woman using male-only thing). It would have been easier to use his 


End of Volume 59 Issue 85