Volume 60 Number 07 
      Produced: Thu, 12 May 2011 17:16:44 EDT

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

A  query on sedra Kedoshim 
    [Michael Poppers]
A Rosh Chodesh query 
    [Martin Stern]
Mohel driving to brit on Shabbat (2)
    [Gershon Dubin]
Sins and non-sins 
    [Sammy Finkelman]
The Katzav case 
    [Jeanette  Friedman]
The Mishkan and the 25th of Kislev 
    [Lisa Liel]


From: Michael Poppers <MPoppers@...>
Date: Mon, May 2,2011 at 07:01 PM
Subject: A  query on sedra Kedoshim

Martin Stern <md.stern@...> wrote (MJ 60#06):

> Every year I find the the position of the last verse of sedra Kedoshim (Lev.
> 20,27) puzzling. It seems to have no connection with the previous ones
> that comprise shevi'i, which form a natural conclusion to the whole sedra.
> If it had been separated from them as single-verse parashah, either open or
> closed, the problem would be less but still there. It sounds as if it is
> out of place, and is really an afterthought that should have been included
> earlier, possibly towards the end of shlishi.

As we might say in America, I 'hear' Martin.  By way of possible answer, I 
would note two further problems: within the parashiyos which comprise the "sedra
[of] Kedoshim", the Torah mentions the "ov/yid'oni" issue a few times, and while
it seems to be sensibly placed in Lev 20:6, given the subject matter of that
parasha until that verse, I have to ask about the order of Lev 19:31 within its
parasha -- OK, the subject is "v'chi savo'u el haAretz" (when you enter the
Land), and you don't want to be utilizing "avos v'yid'onim" while living
baAretz, but why does this pasuq follow Lev 19:30 ("guard my Shabbasos/have awe
of my Temple") and precede Lev 19:32 (proper honor for one's elders)?? -- as
well as why the issue per se is mentioned a few times within these parashiyos.

Perhaps one can infer both from the number of times the "ov/yid'oni" issue is
mentioned as well as its ordering in Lev 19 that the subject matter involves a
bedrock principle of faith in H' and of implanting within oneself a proper level
of awe of H'.  As to why the parasha which comprises Lev 20 contains
admonishment re this issue both near its beginning and at its end, well, someone
sensitive to the literary level might note the concept of chiasmus, but I would
merely say that the emphasis tells us how important an issue it is -- i.e. if
you really want to understand why all the practices listed in Lev 20 are Bad,
understand why this "ov/yid'oni" issue is problematic.

All the best from
Michael Poppers * Elizabeth, NJ, USA


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Wed, May 4,2011 at 05:01 AM
Subject: A Rosh Chodesh query

During the korbanot section of shacharit we add, before Eizehu mekoman, the
parshiot concerning the mussafim [additional sacrifices] brought on Shabbat
and Rosh Chodesh on those days. On the Yamim Tovim we do not do likewise. Can
anyone provide an explanation for this difference?

Martin Stern


From: Gershon Dubin  <gershon.dubin@...>
Date: Mon, May 2,2011 at 08:01 PM
Subject: Mohel driving to brit on Shabbat

Carl Singer <carl.singer@...> wrote (MJ 60#06):

> I don't believe this is correct -- I learned that if necessary the Mohel could
> carry a knife and that he would do so openly.>>

We needn't speculate or offer our opinions;  the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chaim
Siman 331, Se'if 6) clearly forbids any melacha (creative work) on Shabbos to
facilitate the bris (the specific example used is bringing a knife).

It also forbids asking a non-Jew to do so, unless you ask the non-Jew to do a
rabbinically forbidden melacha only.

The Mishna Berura makes an attempt to justify asking a non-Jew to do a
Torah-forbidden melacha, but nobody says the mohel can do so much as a rabbinic


From: Elazar M. Teitz <remt@...>
Date: Tue, May 3,2011 at 12:01 PM
Subject: Mohel driving to brit on Shabbat  

Akiva Miller (MJ 60#05) wrote:

> Only the brit itself is allowed on Shabbat; if the knife was accidentally left
> elsewhere, and there's no eruv, they are not allowed to bring the knife to the
> baby, and the brit would get delayed automatically. I don't see how your case
> differs. Since there's no mohel in the baby's vicinity on Shabbat, it will have
> to be done later. I must have misunderstood the question.

To which Carl Singer (MJ 60#06) responded:

> I don't believe this is correct -- I learned that if necessary the Mohel
> could carry a knife and that he would do so openly.

The halacha is explicit in Shulchan Aruch, Yoreh Deiah 266:5: If the knife is
forgotten, a non-Jew may bring it by carrying it in an area where carrying is
prohibited by Rabbinic decree, but not if it is an area where carrying is
Biblically prohibited.  A Jew may not carry it even if it only involves
violation of a Rabbinic decree.



From: Sammy Finkelman <sammy.finkelman@...>
Date: Mon, May 2,2011 at 06:01 PM
Subject: Sins and non-sins

Jeanette Friedman (MJ 60#06) wrote:

> ...incest, though a sin in the Torah and the Xtian bible, is not a
> sin to them [some members of Congress]  while abortion, which is not
> a in in the Torah or the Xtian bible, is a sin to them,

This isn't correct actually. Abortion is just not considered in a total vacuum.

According to Rabbi Joseph D. Soloveitchik, I read in two places,
abortion has the same din as amputating a leg - and can (and should)
be done for similar medical reasons. That is for Jews. For non-Jews it
seems the conclusion is harder which does not make too much sense -
but this hasn't undergone much analysis. The most you can say I would
guess, without looking at anything, is that a government has the
authority to prohibit it and even give the death penalty without the
people responsible for such a law committing a sin and similarly a
government can prohibit many things upon pain of death without it
being considered a sin.

> To save the life of the mother, Jewishly, you can even dismember
> the baby during delivery ...

Right, and by the way we are closer in time to when that was a real
possibility than we think, because that nearly happened to George
Gamow in 1904.


From: Jeanette  Friedman <FriedmanJ@...>
Date: Tue, May 3,2011 at 12:01 AM
Subject: The Katzav case

In MJ 60#06, a MODerator wrote:

> Without having read the bills one cannot argue on  this but it seems
> more likely that the bills do not say what Jeanette claims  but, rather,
> make a distinction between different categories of rape - perhaps some
> contributor with more information can clarify this point.
Without the MOD having read the bills, which I did before they went into 
committee, I find this remark, in addition to being outrageous, a libel of  
me. Why don't you ask Congressmen Chris Smith, Mike Pence, Dan  
Lepinsky et al. what they meant when they wrote those bills?  Care to
check with Carolyn Fefferman in Senator Robert Menendez's office? She
circulated my articles from http://www.newjerseynewsroom.com to everyone she 
could. So did NOW and other groups. Google it. HR 3, HR 217 and HR 358.  
Why would the MOD even check to see what those bills said? He wouldn't, as  
long as he could gratuitously slam me and try to make me look, at the very  
least, stupid and incapable of understanding the English language.

[I am very sorry Jeanette misunderstood my comment as suggesting she was stupid
and incapable of understanding the English language which certainly was not my
intention. The edited version of her submission had been sent to her for
approval and she appeared to pass it for publication. This does, however,
illustrate the problems caused when contributors assume that all other members
(and moderators) are as familiar as themselves with items on which they are
commenting. I note that she has now explained below that these bills are
connected to attempts to limit the right to abortion - this information was
unfortunately not included in the original submission in MJ 60#06.  MOD]
In fact, there are no distinctions between different kinds of rape. Rape 
is Rape. As I  said, these bills are a right-wing-ultra-religious male 
chauvinist attempt  to do an end-run around Roe v. Wade and, at the same time, 
make incest legal and abortions illegal. It's a horrendous attempt to 
reverse  religious and human rights in the US.  The Democrats in the Senate have
vowed to shut it down, and, if they don't, hopefully Obama will veto those 
bills, if they ever get that far.

Read this:
and also this:


From: Lisa Liel <lisa@...>
Date: Sun, May 8,2011 at 10:01 AM
Subject: The Mishkan and the 25th of Kislev

There's a midrash that says the Mishkan was completed on the 25th of 
Kislev but not erected until the first of Nisan.  I've found a 
source that attributes this to Pesikta Rabbati 6-5, but I was 
wondering if anyone knew of any older source than this.



End of Volume 60 Issue 7