Volume 62 Number 43 
      Produced: Tue, 30 Dec 14 05:40:33 -0500

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

Kaddish - when is a section break not a break? (2)
    [Roger Kingsley  Menashe Elyashiv]
Repulsive odour 
    [Carl Singer]
Seating on planes 
    [Martin Stern]
Serving other gods  
    [Eliezer Berkovits]
Tachnun on July 4th 
    [Carl Singer]
Tachnun on Thanksgiving 
    [Michael Rogovin]
The Paradigm of "In Its Fashion" 
    [Yisrael Medad]
Uva leTsion go'eil 
    [Martin Stern]


From: Roger Kingsley <rogerk@...>
Date: Fri, Dec 5,2014 at 02:01 AM
Subject: Kaddish - when is a section break not a break?

Perets Mett (MJ 62#42) wrote:

> In reply to Avraham (Alan) Friedenberg (MJ 62#41):
> I have pondering this very question recently. Why indeed should there be a
difference on days when we say musaf and on days when we do not.
> Logically the Kadish should immediately follow Ashrei (or Uvo letsion).
> I surmise that on days when there is Musaf, we want to precede Musaf with
a Kadish (like Mincho and Maariv), so we return the Torah to the Oron
Hakodesh before Kadish.

On the days when we say musaf, the kaddish before musaf is never a kaddish
tiskabel - the kaddish tiskabel is said immediately after hallel, or (on
shabbos) after the shacharis shemoneh esrei.

So the need for a close connection of the kaddish to the shmoneh esrei, or
to the kedusha d'sidra in uvo letsion, is broken.

So it then makes sense to place it directly before musaf as an introduction
to musaf.

Roger Kingsley

From: Menashe Elyashiv <Menashe.Elyashiv@...>
Date: Sun, Dec 7,2014 at 03:01 AM
Subject: Kaddish - when is a section break not a break?

Martin Stern wrote (MJ 62#42):

> Avraham (Alan) Friedenberg wrote (MJ 62#41):
>> Kaddish Titkabel and Chatzi Kaddish are used as breaks between the various
>> sections of our davening.  However, there seems to be a conundrum during
>> weekday nusach Sfard concerning the placement of Kaddish Titkabel. On Mondays
>> and Thursdays we daven Ashrei - Lamnatzeach - U'va L'Tztion - Kaddish
>> Titkabel, and then return the Sefer Torah to the Aron Kodesh.
> ...
> I can only suggest that the Chasidim, when they started Nusach Sfard, must
> have had some deep kabbalistic motivation, so asking for a logical
> explanation might be inappropriate.

The Sefaradim have 3 ways: 

1. outside of Israel - after kaddish

2. the mekubalim & in jerusalem - before ashrei, for kabbalistic reasons

3. after u'va lezion, before kaddish - that is what Rav H"D HaLevi wrote in 
his mekor hayim, but I have not seen this in practice


From: Carl Singer <carl.singer@...>
Date: Fri, Dec 5,2014 at 03:01 PM
Subject: Repulsive odour

The several discussions centering specifically on smoking bring back several
points and memories.

1 -  It is alleged, and I cannot verify whether true or lore, that a noted
Rosh Yeshiva when questioned about his smoking, perhaps pointedly, by a
student re: smoking be a health hazard and thus halachically prohibited,
put down his cigarette and quit "cold turkey" at that moment.

2 - I recall 20+ years ago we had a meshulach who came to our door reeking
of smoke complaining that he needed funds to feed his family.  Although we
gave him funds, we discussed with him how many packs a day he smoked and
thus calculated resultant cost -- we sternly admonished him that his
smoking  was taking food from the mouths of his children.  Perhaps not a
nice or appropriate thing to do on our part.

3 - Decades ago I recall there being a yarhzeit candle burning in shul on
the Yom Tovim so smokers would light up.  I don't know if that's still done.

Re: the person who has a long distance to walk to shul and arriving hot and
sweaty. There are certainly reasons for time and circumstance that make it
difficult for some people to live near a shule -- but in general I would
say that people make their own bed. If it means enough to them to live near a
shule they will make decisions / sacrifice accordingly.

Carl A. Singer


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Thu, Nov 6,2014 at 05:01 AM
Subject: Seating on planes

Recently there have been, once again, reports of problems caused by chareidi
men objecting to being seated next to women on planes, especially on El Al
flights though recently also on a Delta flight in the US. Unfortunately the
"Jewish" press like to feature such "news" items since they stir up
controversy among their readers.

Unfortunately a small minority of Orthodox people act in an unseemly manner
but others use this as an excuse to vent their own anti-chareidi prejudices.

For example, a certain Herbert Goldberg wrote to the (London) Jewish News
(30 October) "Charadim [should] set up their own airline, which would allow
them to exercise all their antediluvian practices, prejudices and
superstitions without bothering the majority of us who dont mind whom they
sit next to"

Personally I don't find this a problem but I am prepared to accept that
others may feel uncomfortable doing so and I think their views should be

This could easily be solved if El Al made available the facility, when
booking, to ask not to be seated next to someone of the opposite sex (some
ladies might also take up this option). It must have a fair idea how many
such people are likely on any flight and could easily make this available.
It would be no more difficult than other airlines providing kosher meals.

The situation is completely different from that of gender segregation on
buses which the Israeli Supreme Court ruled illegal, since on aeroplanes,
unlike buses, one books a specific seat rather than the right to any
available one.

Of course those not bothering to make use of such a booking option should
not be allowed to demand a change of seat once they board. If they cause any
trouble, they should be removed from the flight as would happen to a
passenger who was drunk or otherwise disorderly. There is no reason why
boorish behaviour, by chareidim as much as by secular people, should be

So long as their seating arrangements are sorted out before boarding there
is no reason why anyone should be aware as to why they were allocated the
seats they occupy.

El Al's failure to make suitable arrangements at the time of booking shows a
lack of consideration for chareidim, an unfortunate symptom of the growing
Kulturkampf in Israel which both sides need to do everything to counter.

Is it not time for everybody to accept that others have different lifestyles
to which they are entitled?

Martin Stern


From: Eliezer Berkovits <eb@...>
Date: Fri, Dec 5,2014 at 05:01 AM
Subject: Serving other gods 

Following the discussion between Martin Stern and David Tzohar regarding
Christian charitable groups, I did not follow the initial posts but want to add
an interesting tidbit.

When I was Googling Tzedakah funds for the families of the victims of the Har
Nof attacks, one of the first search results was that of the ICEJ (International
Christian Embassy Jerusalem) who had started an appeal for the families. IIRC
there was nothing objectionable in the text.


Strangely enough that page appears to have now disappeared

Eliezer Berkovits


From: Carl Singer <carl.singer@...>
Date: Fri, Dec 5,2014 at 03:01 PM
Subject: Tachnun on July 4th

The day after posting re: Tachnun on Thanksgiving (in the U.S.A.,
obviously)  I discussed this with a friend who happens to be a Talmid

He mentioned visiting a shule while traveling and the Rabbi there, quoting
from his father, said that HaKoras HaTov dictated that Americans should not
say Tachnun on July 4th.

This is clearly less an issue than Thanksgiving as there is no hint of a
religious tie to 4th  -- as opposed to disagreements re: Thanksgiving.



From: Michael Rogovin <michael@...>
Date: Fri, Dec 5,2014 at 09:01 AM
Subject: Tachnun on Thanksgiving

Carl Singer asks (MJ 62#42) about tachanun on Thanksgiving. I recall
Rabbi Shlomo Riskin speaking once at Lincoln Square (he was visiting from
Efrat) and if I recall correctly, he suggested that tachanun was reshut and
that American Jews have much to be thankful for in terms of the freedom in
this country and that, therefore, there were days for which Tachanun could
be omitted. I forget if he was referring to July 4, Thanksgiving Day or
both. Perhaps those who attended LSS when he was rabbi recall what his
actual practice was.

There is little evidence that Thanksgiving is Christian in any way. The
fact that the proclamations mention God is not relevant, nor are services
held in churches (they also hold services on other national holidays).
Finding religious significance in secular things is (or can be) a positive,
but does not change the essential nature of the secular event. If a church
were to hold a prayer service for Israel Independence Day, would that make
the day a Christian holiday? No Christian I know, whether marginally
affiliated or very devout would consider Thanksgiving Christian; it is a
day to give thanks for bounty, for gathering with family, and acknowledging
all that is good. By the way, Jingle Bells while associated with songs of
the upcoming holiday, is in fact a winter song with no connection
whatsoever with Christmas (other than being included on holiday albums). It
was, apparently, first sung at a church service on a snowy Thanksgiving in
New England. Fits nicely to Adon Olam and Shir HaMa'alot if you are into
that sort of thing.

I would also note that the first Thanksgiving likely involved duck,
venison, shellfish, corn, cabbage and squash. It was a harvest festival,
similar to Sukkot, and may well be related to similar festivals celebrated
in Europe centered around goose. There is an interesting article in the
latest issue of Hakira, the Flatbush Torah Journal which, while not
mentioning Thanksgiving, has hints of what the origin might be in its
discussion of the centrality of goose in European and middle eastern

On a lighter side, we do know that Thanksgiving is a legitimate Jewish
holiday since God apparently thinks that Turkey is good. It is there for
fitting to recite Hallel, not just omit Tachanun. Proof text (obviously):
"Hodu laShem ki tov ki leolam chasdo".

Michael Rogovin


From: Yisrael Medad  <yisrael.medad@...>
Date: Sat, Dec 13,2014 at 03:01 PM
Subject: The Paradigm of "In Its Fashion"

In an attempt to continue the discussion on what I would term seemingly
external elements that influence the Halacha (although, I am sure, many
would assert that actually they are built-in), I refer to an element "in
its fashion/normally" characteristic or in the Hebrew *k'darko*.

For example, in the fifth chapter of the the Laws of Shemittah in the
Rambam's Mishneh Torah, Halacha 2: "...One should eat those foods that are
normally eaten and drink the beverages that are normally drunken..."
and Halacha 3: "He should not change the natural function of produce as he
does not with regard to terumah and the second tithe, i.e., something that is
normally eaten raw should not be eaten cooked. Something that is normally
eaten cooked should not be eaten raw...".

What defines k'darko?  A place? A period of time?  A community's practice?
General practice?  Is this element limited to foods or can it be applied to
other aspects?

Yisrael Medad


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Sat, Nov 29,2014 at 04:01 PM
Subject: Uva leTsion go'eil

I have always wondered why we do not include Uva leTsion in shacharit on
Shabbat and Tom Tov. It cannot be because of musaph following on since that
also happens on Rosh Chodesh and Chol Hamoed when we do say it. Time
considerations seem too trivial to be an explanation.

One thought I had was that it might be linked to wearing tefillin. The
Gemara mentions (Ber. 64b) that the Bnei Ma'arava [inhabitants of Eretz
Yisrael] used to make the berakhah "lishmor chukav" when taking off their
tefillin and some consider that the passage "yehi ratzon ... shenishmor
chukekha" at the end of Uva leTsion may be a reference to this custom. If
this is correct then the omission of Uva leTsion on days when tefillin are
not worn would make sense but I have not seen this idea quoted.

Has anyone else come across this or know any other reason for the omission
of Uva leTsion on Shabbat and Tom Tov?

Martin Stern


End of Volume 62 Issue 43