Volume 60 Number 92 
      Produced: Thu, 28 Jun 2012 15:01:57 EDT

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

Mayim Achronim 
    [Sanford Lefkowitz]
No Rape Evidence in Our Genes 
    [Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz]
Shabbat timers 
    [Yisrael Medad]


From: Sanford Lefkowitz <slefkowitz@...>
Date: Tue, Jun 26,2012 at 10:01 PM
Subject: Mayim Achronim

There is a rather widespread practice of performing mayim achronim on the
fingertips. But there are sources, noted below, that seem to say this is
wrong and that one should wash down to the knuckles. But since the fingertip
practice is so widespread, it would seem there has to be some basis for it.
Does anyone know how this practice developed and what the basis is? And why
do so few people wash down to the knuckles?
The following comes from the Daily Halacha mail list of June 7, 2012 (and, along 
with other Hilchos Birchas Hamazon, is archived, listed under section 540
and 541, at
[or http://goo.gl/PjmNV --Mod.]):
Hilchos Birchas Hamazon

3156. L'chatchila one should wash Mayim Achronim until the knuckles to
fulfill all opinions. Bi'dieved one is yotze if one washed until the 2nd
joint of the fingers (and the 1st joint of the thumb) because that is where
the food usually touches when eating. Shulchan Aruch w/Mishnah Brurah 181:4

3157. The Mishnah Brurah says "It (makes me feel) is bad to see people who
are careful with washing Mayim Achronim, but they are not fulfilling the
obligation of the law at all because they only put some drops of water on
their fingertips which do not even reach the end of the 1st finger
joints....". Shulchan Aruch w/Mishnah Brurah  181:4

Note: The typical Mayim Achronim cups in use today generally only hold
enough water for 1-2 people to properly wash Mayim Achronim. (Even a full
cup of water brought to the table will only contain enough water for 4-6
people). Therefore, it is advisable, especially for families who have more
than 2 people eating at the table, to wash at a sink, to insure the proper
fulfillment of this Mitzvah.


From: Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz <sabbahillel@...>
Date: Mon, Jun 25,2012 at 03:01 PM
Subject: No Rape Evidence in Our Genes

Yisrael Medad wrote (MJ 60#91):

> The claim "No Rape Evidence in Our Genes" is patently wrong, false and in
> error, whatever "evidence" the genetic study claims, if the conclusion from
> it is that there were no rapes. I think that is fairly clear. How anyone can
> sanely claim there were no rapes is beyond me.

The claim is not that there was no rape. The claim was that the number 
of children born as a result of rape raised in the Jewish community who 
still have descendants identified as Jews was less than might have been 
thought. From reading about events during the rape, pillage, and 
pogroms, it would appear that many of the rape victims would have been 
murdered afterwards. This would prevent any children from being born.

It would appear that children who survived would be mainly the result of 
inter-marriage so that they would be accepted in the community and still 
have descendants today.

Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz


From: Yisrael Medad <yisrael.medad@...>
Date: Tue, Jun 26,2012 at 03:01 PM
Subject: Shabbat timers

Shabbat timers make it into the NYTimes:

"Gas, sewage, water, air-conditioning and electricity - including timers
for Shabbat - were all in place on Tuesday as families ousted from the
disputed neighborhood known as Ulpana made their way to their new homes
down the hill here."

[or http://goo.gl/mTilS --Mod.]

One result of a Jewish reporter on the job.

Yisrael Medad


End of Volume 60 Issue 92