Volume 6 Number 79

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Bright Women
         [Bob Werman]
Can you eat regular cheese.
         [Warren Burstein]
Hebrew Calendar Computer Program
         [Shlomo Kalish]
Heter Iska
         [Mechael Kanovsky]
International non(?)-flavor of List
         [Bob Werman]
Jews and Sports
         [Naomi G. Cohen]
         [Eli Turkel]
Lo Tilbash
         [Eli Turkel]
Pesach in the Desert
         [Michael Allen]
Reading Hebrew
         [Meylekh Viswanath]


From: <RWERMAN@...> (Bob Werman)
Date: Sat, 27 Mar 93 01:41:42 -0500
Subject: RE: Bright Women

I beg to differ from Jonathan Stiebel, my neighbor, or from Rav Leff,
whom he seems to quote.

The brightest women I have known are quite different from the
generalizations voiced in his posting.  I hate this form of
generalization, but the brightest women I have seen in more than 30
years of academic career and twice that time just living, including a
stint as a Professor of Psychiatry, were more logical and deductively
superior to the men of similar intelligence in the environment.  On the
whole, of course.  By the same token, I thought they were less
intuitively brilliant, less given to unfettered fancy than their equally
bright male colleagues.  Again, on the whole.  For what it is worth.

__Bob Werman


From: <warren@...> (Warren Burstein)
Date: Mon, 29 Mar 93 01:06:21 -0500
Subject: Re: Can you eat regular cheese.

In the book "Bemareh Habazak", a collection of responsa in which both
the question and answer were faxed to and from Israel, gevinat akum is
prohibited even if it is certain that the ingredients are entirely
kosher.  Unfortunately I don't have the book, so I can't check their

 |warren@      But the weeder
/ nysernet.org is not all that ***.


From: Shlomo Kalish <T76@...>
Date: Sun, 28 Mar 93 06:51:18 -0500
Subject: Re: Hebrew Calendar Computer Program

I am interested in a computer program that computes the Hebrew calendar
for the next 50 years.  Anyone aware of such a program?  Please let me
Chag Kosher and Sameach
Shlomo Kalish


From: <KANOVSKY@...> (Mechael Kanovsky)
Date: Thu, 25 Mar 93 16:34:59 -0500
Subject: Re: Heter Iska

 First of all, it is a late "takana" much later than the gemara I think
it was made some time during the middle ages when jews were restricted
to money lending. The classical heter iska is that the lender and the 
borower become partners and the interest is considered just profit
taking (what they do in cases that the investment doesn't work out or
if it is for a non profit situation like buying a house etc. I do not
know). The reason given by Danny might work only on the interest that 
the bank gives not what it takes.


From: <RWERMAN@...> (Bob Werman)
Date: Sat, 27 Mar 93 01:35:53 -0500
Subject: International non(?)-flavor of List

I never feel so far from the other members of this list as when I read
about what is kosher le-pesaH [translation: kosher for Passover] in the
USA, as if that was the only place where one had to worry about such

Yidden, yidden.

__Bob Werman


From: Naomi G. Cohen <RVOLF01@...>
Date: Sun, 28 Mar 93 20:12:23 IST
Subject: Re: Jews and Sports

To Avi Jacob Hyman's query about Jews and sports: I recall the stories
told in our home (I am the daughter of the late Rabbi Herbert S.
Goldstein who founded the Institutional Synagogue - which combined gym,
clubs, etc.  with Hebrew School and Shul), about playing ball with the
boys, and then comparing tsistit. Some of this is documented in the book
entitled, The Maverick Rabbi, by Aaron I. Reichel, particularly Ch. 10
Three Institutions Combined, pp. 90 ff.  Naomi G. Cohen



From: <turkel@...> (Eli Turkel)
Date: Wed, 31 Mar 93 16:41:24 +0200
Subject: Kitniyot

     Just to reiterate what I said before. Rav Moshe Feinstein seems
to feel that none of the given reasons for prohibiting kitniyot make sense
as there are too many exceptions, e.g. we eat potatoes even though
potato flour was a staple in many countries. Furthermore, we know of no
court that prohibited kitniyot and so it is only a custom that developed
over time. Rav Feinstein's conclusion is therefore only things that are
included in this custom are prohibited. Products as peanuts and cottenseed
that were not prohibited in the past (because of technical reasons) do not
become prohibited when technology changes and they are now eatable. This 
is even more so for derivatives of such products as cottenseed oil and
peanut oil. I have also heard the same in the name of Rav Lichtenstein
for sunflower oil.
      Rav Weisz and Rav Eliashiv feel that kitniyot are prohibited.
The definition of kitniyot is decided by looking at laws in many different
areas. Thus, for example, if cotten is considered kitniyot for some
halacha, e.g. kilyaim, then it is prohibited on Pesach. The fact that 
cottenseed or peanuts or soya beans were inedible for many centuries is
irrelevant according to these opinions.
      In the US the OU and most supervisions accept the opinion of Rav
Moshe Feinstein. In Israel Jerusalem Badatz, Belz and Aguda accept the
opinion of Rav Weisz and Rav Eliashiv. Rav Landa of Bnei Brak gives a
hechsher on cottenseed oil (which I bought) and I think peanut oil.



From: <turkel@...> (Eli Turkel)
Date: Sun, 28 Mar 93 15:59:46 +0200
Subject: Lo Tilbash

     While to Rav Horowitz zz'l it is given that only shomrei mitzvot
establish tol tilbash it is not that clear to me. I saw a recent article
by Rav Yehuda Henkin on women covering their hair and he makes a
distinction that for some halachot all people determine the standards
while for some halachot only religious people establish the standards,
i,e, there is a difference between daat yehudit, daat moshe and ervah.
Rav henkin does not discuss our issue in his article. It just seems to
me that lo tilbash should depend on all people while tzniut depends only
on religious people.

     A lot depends on the reason for the issur of 'lo tilbash'. If the
reason is to prevent promiscuity it makes more sense to me that it
depends on the general mode of dress. Take a hypothetical island (off of
Scotland) where all the men wear kilts. A group of hasidim move to the
island and these men only wear pants. I find it difficult to imagine
that a third group of religious Jews that move to the island would be
mistaken for women if they wore kilts like 99% of the (nonJewish)



From: <allen@...> (Michael Allen)
Date: Wed, 31 Mar 93 12:00:23 -0500
Subject: Pesach in the Desert

Reviewing the Hagaddah this year, a couple of questions came to mind.

1)  How did they make Matzah in the desert?  I don't *think* manna can
    become chametz.

2) How about the Korban Pesach?  If they had sheep, why did they
   complain about the lack of meat and require quail?

-Thanks and have a Chag Kasher v'Sameach,


From: <VISWANATH@...> (Meylekh Viswanath)
Date: Thu, 25 Mar 93 16:58:58 -0500
Subject: Re: Reading Hebrew

	Aryeh Frimer recently sounded off on the subject of the
unwillingness of bnai Torah to read Hebrew.  I agree with him that it is
a bushe un a kherpe (un a shande, to boot) that people rely entirely on
English publications.  I am sure that he is speaking in general about
people who avoid learning Hebrew or making efforts to that end, so as to
be able to read sforim in the original.

	I am further sure that he is not accusing people on m.j. of
belonging to that set of individuals, or making inferences from their
reliance on English to various degrees in making posts on m.j.  There
could be all kinds of reasons for such reliance.  In my case, for
example, inspite of regularly learning gemore in the original, with
rashi and tosfes (generally, no English, unless my khevruse and I have
spent a couple of hours in trying to unsuccessfully clarify a line of
gemore), when it comes to long nuanced discursions on a given subject, I
am less sure that I have grasped the point of the article, especially
the details.  Hence, while I continue to make attempts to read such
articles in Hebrew (e.g. I asked for and got the original shayles and
tshuves that I referred to in my previous post, from my rabbi, tried to
read it on my own, and then sat down with a friend and went through it
again), I would feel hesitant to claim with certainty that I have
understood the entirety of the article.

(In the case of the tshuves in question, I was hoping to get to them
soon to be able to post their contents in person.  However, given
Manny's post, I didn't want to wait any longer to provide what
information I already had.)

So, although I often wish the article were written in English or
Yiddish, I continue to make efforts to decipher the Hebrew, and am
hoping for a time in the near future, when I can devote a sizeable
amount of time to Hebrew study, perhaps a sabbatical in Yisroel.  The
bottom line is that just because people rely on English sources in their
posts does not mean that they are not making efforts to acquire Hebrew
proficiency (this goes especially for baalei tshuva).  I have no doubt
that other individuals on m.j. would have similar stories to tell.



End of Volume 6 Issue 79