Volume 64 Number 08 
      Produced: Thu, 22 Nov 18 03:26:33 -0500

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

Answering kedusha at night time 
    [Irwin Weiss]
Daven or learn first? 
    [Yisrael Medad]
Deference to Minority Opinions 
    [Joel Rich]
Geniza for Microfilm 
    [Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz]
Ma'ariv on first night of Rosh Hashanah 
    [Sammy Finkelman]
Modern Orthodoxy? 
    [Joseph Kaplan]
Saying Modim Out Loud 
    [Orrin Tilevitz]
Sephardic minhag of wrapping tefillin around the arm 
    [Yisrael Medad]
Stress in Kaddish 
    [Mark Steiner]


From: Irwin Weiss <irwin@...>
Date: Mon, Nov 12,2018 at 07:01 AM
Subject: Answering kedusha at night time

David Ziants (MJ 64#07) poses a question relating to halachic obligations via
telephone, or more recently via skype etc.

Issues relating to participating in a minyan via the internet, responding to
Kaddish, time zone issues, and the issue of electronically transmitted sound,
are discussed in this 2001 statement from the Conservative movement. The authors
conclude that one may not constitute a minyan over the internet, but that some
participation is permissible in exigent circumstances. 


Some Conservative shuls have taken to live broadcasting of tefillot on Shabbat,
I suppose to permit relatives of a Bar Mitzvah who live far away to watch in
real time.  Our major local funeral home broadcasts a levayah if requested by
the family, and archives the broadcast for a month or two, also permitting
people to attend remotely.   

Irwin Weiss
Baltimore, MD


From: Yisrael Medad  <yisrael.medad@...>
Date: Sun, Nov 11,2018 at 07:01 AM
Subject: Daven or learn first?

Joel Rich wrote (MJ 64#07):

> I'm told the "minhag ha'olam [common practice] is to get up early to learn and
> then daven (even if that is not the first minyan available). Assuming the
> learning starts after the earliest time for davening, shouldn't the "minhag" 
> be to daven first, then learn?

a) "Assuming the learning starts after the earliest time for davening" is a
big assumption.

b) How could one assume that? The mitzvah of Talmud Torah [learning] is Yomam
Va'Layla, i.e. 24/7.

c)  Doesn't one make a Birkat HaTorah first, learn something as the Siddur
has it and then pray?

Yisrael Medad


From: Joel Rich <JRich@...>
Date: Fri, Nov 16,2018 at 01:01 AM
Subject: Deference to Minority Opinions

I've been thinking about the number of times the Shulchan Aruch (or Mishnah
Berurah) says that it's worth giving deference to a minority opinion. 

I was wondering if this is the result of the algorithmic approach of "voting" of
earlier authorities rather than going through the entire sugya [Talmudic
discussion] to come to a conclusion? 

Do we see this same propensity in earlier authorities who were not writing codes
in this manner? 

Is there another reason why different authorities might deal with this issue

Joel Rich


From: Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz <sabbahillel@...>
Date: Sun, Nov 11,2018 at 03:01 PM
Subject: Geniza for Microfilm

Chaim Casper wrote (MJ 64#07):

> In a similar vein, I remember seeing (though I can't recall where) that the Name
> on a computer monitor is not a Name that requires geniza because nothing has
> been actually written.   The "I"s and the "0"s of a computer mother board have
> been programmed to write a "G" (as in God) or "Yud" (as in The Name) in the
> order the computer operator has dictated.   It is not writing as we understand
> it.     When we look at the monitor, we discern these letters are making a word.
> But it is not a word.

The image on the screen is not a permanent image but is created pixel by pixel
and erased very quickly. Thus, what you are seeing is only an illusion caused by
persistence of vision. As a result the word hat appears is not actually
"written". In fact, if you could see what is actually on the screen it would not
be the complete word. Therefore it is not only the translation of the binary
format, but it is not even the actual image that you think that you are seeing.

This is different than the microfilm. One could consider the microfilm as being
the same as having written in extremely small letters.

Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz


From: Sammy Finkelman <sammy.finkelman@...>
Date: Thu, Nov 15,2018 at 08:01 PM
Subject: Ma'ariv on first night of Rosh Hashanah

Martin Stern wrote (MJ 64#06):

> During a discussion, someone told me that one should daven Ma'ariv on first
> night of Rosh Hashanah after night and claimed that this was based on the
> opinion of the Maharil, the fifteenth century authority whose opinions form
> the basis of much of Minhag Ashkenaz.
> I was rather sceptical and asked where this ruling was to be found in the
> Maharil's writings since the general custom in Germany had always been to
> daven early because of those who fasted on Erev Rosh Hashanah, as was at one
> time a very common practice.
> He replied that he did not have a precise reference since he had only seen
> it quoted in one of those 'sedra sheets' that are distributed every week but
> would try to find it. I have noticed that such secondary sources can often
> misunderstand the work quoted, as became clear on many occasions when I
> consulted the original 'quoted'.

That's not only true for sedra sheets, it's often true of many divrei torah
(that focus on one point) and other things printed in books that aren't so

It's probably not as bad as what I read about how, when students in Petach
Tikvah had a question for the Chazon Ish, mainly to verify the accuracy of
things that had been quoted in his name, and they asked Chaim Kanievesky (the
son of the Steipler Gaon) to ask the Chazon Ish about when he would travel back
to Bnei Brak for Shabbos, he told him that not only was it wrong - either he
didn't say anything like it, or he said the exact opposite.

This story is to be found on page 44 (and more on fully page 46) of a 3 page
article about the Chazon Ish in the 24 Cheshvan 5779 / November 2 2018 issue of
the Yated Ne'eman.

Rav Chaim Kanievesky said he did not believe that there was ever a single time
when the Chazon Ish was quoted accurately (at least when some people had a
question about it!)


From: Joseph Kaplan <penkap@...>
Date: Sun, Nov 11,2018 at 11:01 AM
Subject: Modern Orthodoxy?

Joel Rich wrote (MJ 64#06):

> Two "M.O." (Modern Orthodox) community members on different occasions recently
> articulated to me that M.O. means picking and choosing what one observes
> (e.g., the classic "I don't hold of not putting on makeup on Shabbat").

Unlike others, I do not interpret these comments as saying that MO means
sometimes picking not to observe that which must be observed or doing things
that are prohibited.  Rather, I understand it to be a reflection on autonomy and
asking for psak; that is, they know that there are different opinions about the
permissibility of putting on makeup on Shabbat and rather than asking for a psak
they choose between two known acceptable psakim. Whatever one may think about
acting in such a manner, it shows a commitment to observance rather than the



From: Orrin Tilevitz <tilevitzo@...>
Date: Sun, Nov 18,2018 at 01:01 PM
Subject: Saying Modim Out Loud

Many decades ago, my bar mitzvah teacher taught me that, as the sheliach tzibur,
I should recite most of modim in an undertone and only the last line out aloud.
If I remember correctly -- I could be wrong -- that was the general practice
where I davened, and is the current one of people of my generation who have not
been infected with halachic legalisms.

Years later, in college, I was taught that this practice was wrong; that, since
modim was part of the amidah, all of it should be recited aloud in the
repetition. So I assumed that what I was taught was basically non-halachic
sloppiness, not rising to the level of a minhag.

The last few days I have been davening at an eidot hamizrach -- I think
Moroccan--minyan in Israel, large enough to have a mara d'atra around, and the
sheliach tzibur has been someone who clearly has done this before, in a
community with ancient, hidebound tradition. To my surprise, he recited all of
modim except the last line in an undertone (although audibly; but then the shatz
in eidot hamizrach says everything audibly). 

So, I guess my question is: is the insistence that all of modim be recited aloud
an actual requirement, or merely a modern construction of what perhaps logically
ought to be the halacha but in fact isn't?


From: Yisrael Medad  <yisrael.medad@...>
Date: Sun, Nov 11,2018 at 08:01 AM
Subject: Sephardic minhag of wrapping tefillin around the arm

Sammy Finkelman wrote (MJ 64#07):

> Do Sephardim wrap 8 times?
> I know that Sephardim wind in the opposite direction, but I never heard
> anything about a different number of windings.

The link to a short clip (below) on how to affix tefillin seems to indicate
eight wraparounds.


Yisrael Medad


From: Mark Steiner <mark.steiner@...>
Date: Sun, Nov 11,2018 at 01:01 PM
Subject: Stress in Kaddish

Orrin Tilevitz wrote (MJ 64#07):

> In response to the responses from Michael Poppers and R. Elazar Teitz (MJ 64#06)
> to my question (MJ 64#05) regarding the proper stress in "tushbechata ve
> nechemata and be-a-le-ma" in kaddish. This is, in part, informed by a helpful
> correspondence I had offline with R. Teitz.
> 1. Both Michael and R. Teitz bring as proof the stresses, marked by
> cantillations, in the Book of Daniel. The problem is that Daniel antedates the
> kaddish by several centuries, and "as R. Teitz concedes" the Masoretes who 
> later vocalized the text of Daniel, and placed the cantillations, closer to the 
> time kaddish came into existence, presumably were trying to reconstruct the
> pronunciation at the time Daniel was written...

I agree that the masoretic tropes to Daniel does not prove much concerning the
Babylonian Jewish Talmudic Aramaic (including the Kaddish, Targum, etc.).  They
are different dialects.   In fact, there are prominent linguists (such as Prof.
Moshe Bar-Asher) who believe that the Hebrew of the Mishnah might have been
pronounced mil`eil by the Tannaim themselves.  In general, I tend to take the
Ashkenazic reading tradition more seriously than our posters.  "Mistakes" like
'rebbe' and 'medresh' are found in the ancient vocalized mss of the Mishnah
(such as the Kaufmann Codex).  Of course, this does not provide evidence about
the original pronunciation of 'nehamata' etc.

By the way, in old Ashkenaz siddurim, as well as Sepharadi siddurim to this
very day, the vocalization of the word is nehamata, not nehemata.


End of Volume 64 Issue 8