Volume 66 Number 05 
      Produced: Sun, 23 Oct 22 12:45:07 -0400

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

Federal judge places temporary stay on N Y gun ban 
    [Prof. L. Levine]
Israeli etrogim have Kedushat Shvi'it (2)
    [David Ziants  Orrin Tilevitz]
Israeli housing prices keep soaring 
    [Prof. L. Levine]
Mapik Heh 
    [Martin Stern]
Rav Schwab on the Role of Women 
    [Prof. L. Levine]
Response to a question 
    [Perets Mett]
Someone else's heter 
    [Ari Trachtenberg]
The Arovoh 
    [Michael Poppers]
What is its kashrut status? 
    [Yisrael Medad]
Yash for kiddush 
    [Martin Stern]


From: Prof. L. Levine <llevine@...>
Date: Fri, Oct 21,2022 at 11:17 AM
Subject: Federal judge places temporary stay on N Y gun ban

A federal judge in Western New York has issued a temporary stay blocking New
York's ban on guns in houses of worship amid another legal challenge to New
York's law meant to restrict firearms in areas deemed sensitive.


It seems to me that if anyone should be armed, it should be the synagogue's
rabbi. If congregants knew the rav of a shul were armed, they might be more
respectful towards him!

So now, if the rav of shul wants to carry a gun, he most certainly can!

Should other people davening in one's shul also be armed?

Professor Yitzchok Levine


From: David Ziants <dziants@...>
Date: Fri, Oct 21,2022 at 10:17 AM
Subject: Israeli etrogim have Kedushat Shvi'it

First one has to explain that, according to most opinions, it is halachically
permitted to export etrogim with kedushat shvi'it from Eretz Yisrael (EY) for
use with the arba mimim. There is an opinion that immediately after the end of
Sukkot, one has to return such fruit to EY, which I understand is also a
minority opinion (cannot remember whose - maybe Rav Eliahiv or Rav SZ Aurbach).
Some who do not normally follow heter mechira say, that with exported etrogim
for using on sukkot, heter mechira is the most preferable option.

It is the permissibility to eat the etrog with kedushat shvi'it outside EY after
sukkot, that is confusing me.


From: Orrin Tilevitz <tilevitzo@...>
Date: Fri, Oct 21,2022 at 11:17 AM
Subject: Israeli etrogim have Kedushat Shvi'it

Haim Snyder writes (MJ 66#04):

> Those of you who don't live in Israel and who bought Israeli etrogim, be advised
> that the year 5782 was a shmitta year. This means that, presumably, the etrog
> you purchased was from Otzar Beit Din and has Kedushat Shvi'it, with all that
> implies.

How could this happen (other than if someone was in Israel for sukkot and
brought it home)? My daughter in Israel tells me that Shemita produce isn't
supposed to be exported. Are there really Shemita etrogim in CHUL?


From: Prof. L. Levine <llevine@...>
Date: Fri, Oct 21,2022 at 04:17 PM
Subject: Israeli housing prices keep soaring

The housing market in Israel continues to defy expectations despite a drop in
demand, rising interest and mortgage rates, and global property trends; the cost
of living index also was up 4.6% over last year.


Despite this, Israel continues to take in immigrants from the Ukraine and
Russia, many of whom are not halachically Jewish, and to encourage aliyah from
other countries. Does this make any sense?  I think not.

Professor Yitzchok Levine


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Sun, Oct 23,2022 at 09:17 AM
Subject: Mapik Heh

David Olivestone wrote (MJ 65#98):
> I am constantly surprised by how many baalei tefillah [leaders of the
> davening] do not know how to pronounce a word which ends with the letter heh
> with a mapik (dot) inside it.

The converse can also be true. I sometimes wonder which woman the baal tefillah
thanks the Almighty for not having made him her husband!

Martin Stern


From: Prof. L. Levine <llevine@...>
Date: Sun, Oct 23,2022 at 12:17 PM
Subject: Rav Schwab on the Role of Women

In his Selected Writings (page 327), Rav Schwab wrote:

"Western civilizations' notion that women play second fiddle or have an inferior
role to men is refuted by this statement of Adam, who understood that his wife
was to be perfectly matched to him, equal to him in importance.

"Kol kevuda bas melech penima - The Jewish daughter is a bas melech; she is a
princess, and her glory reigns inside. Benoseinu k'saviyos, sings the mshorar in
Tehillim (144:12), our daughters are in the corners, mechutavos tavnis heichal ,
yet carved in the format of the Beis Hamikdash.

"Sarah Schenirer a"h told the Jewish daughters of the royalty, the nobility of
the Jewish woman. Jewish women are capable of reaching the highest madreigah,
heights of ruach hakodesh and even nevuah. To them is entrusted the task of
bringing up the Jewish child, of raising a new generation, when the children are
yet infants. And to them is entrusted the shalom bayis of the Jewish family. And
when the pasuk says that the chachmah of a Jewish woman lies in her ability to
spin threads, it refers to the threads which bind together husband and wife, the
old generation and the new. Threading, binding together - that is her chachmah."

I wonder how many women today, even observant women, would agree with these

Professor Yitzchok Levine


From: Perets Mett <pmett99@...>
Date: Sat, Oct 22,2022 at 01:17 PM
Subject: Response to a question

Carl Singer (MJ 66#04) wrote:

> ... The caller then asked my wife whether we bought our home or whether we were
> renters.  She replied, we purchased our home.  The caller then told her that
> she had 3 days to put up mezzuzahs. [Ours were already up - first thing we
> did.]  Nonetheless my wife replied, "No, we have 30 days." The caller said,
> "Who told you that?"   My wife replied, "My Rav".  The caller, "Who's that?"
> The conversation was apparently heating up.   My wife replied, "Reb ____", a
> Rosh Yeshiva who is known worldwide by his first name, who happened to be a
> family friend.    Thus the conversation ended ...

I regret to say that you are both wrong

A purchaser of a property has no grace period and is required to fix mezuzos
immediately on occupying the property

The grace period of 30 days applies only to a renter in chutz la-arets

Perets Mett


From: Ari Trachtenberg <trachten@...>
Date: Fri, Oct 21,2022 at 12:17 PM
Subject: Someone else's heter

Leah Gordon wrote (MJ 66#04):

> ... my sister taught me that there is a halakha that you are
> supposed to concern yourself with other people's bodily needs and your own
> spiritual needs, never mind that most people do quite the opposite.

I'm not familiar with this halacha, and I would love it if anyone has a reference.
I am familiar with a quote attributed to Rabbi Israel Salanter, the father of the
Mussar movement, which sometimes appears as my quote of the day in emails:

"A pious Jew is not one who worries about his fellow man's soul and his own
stomach, but one who worries about his own soul and his fellow man's stomach."

Ari Trachtenberg, Boston University 
http://people.bu.edu/trachten mailto:<trachten@...>


From: Michael Poppers <the65pops@...>
Date: Thu, Oct 20,2022 at 11:17 PM
Subject: The Arovoh

David Ansbacher wrote (MJ 66#03):

> It seems to have become a minhag to put the Arovos on top of the Oron Hakodesh.
> I was totally unaware of this minhag until I went to Yeshivah.
> On Shemini Atzeres, I heard a cute reason for this minhag ... After we have
> finished using the arba minim, we don't just throw them away ... The poor Arovoh
> is beaten on the ground and no brochoh is made. Therefore some people felt that
> they should elevate the poor broken Arovos by putting them on top of the Aron
> Hakodesh.

Mishnayos Sukka Chapter 4 (https://www.sefaria.org/Mishnah_Sukkah.4.5) notes
that aravos were stacked on the sides of the altar. Tangentially, for some
online thoughts on the topic of aravos, see


and many have the custom to continue using both aravos and haddasim for "one
more day" by tossing them onto the roof of their sukka; so perhaps David's
yeshiva was combining those actions :).

All the best from
Michael Poppers 
Elizabeth, NJ, USA


From: Yisrael Medad  <yisrael.medad@...>
Date: Sun, Oct 23,2022 at 04:17 AM
Subject: What is its kashrut status?

I just saw this news item:

"In the middle of San Francisco, there's a pilot production plant for Wildtype,
one of a handful of cell-cultivated seafood companies in the US. Inside, it's
growing sushi-grade coho salmon in tanks similar to those found in breweries -
no fishing or farming required. Cultivation starts by taking a small sample from
a living fish species. Cells then multiply as they would in nature in the large
vessels and eventually become fatty and lean parts of a fish fillet."

What is its kashrut status?

Yisrael Medad


From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Sun, Oct 23,2022 at 06:17 AM
Subject: Yash for kiddush

Meir Shinnar wrote  (MJ 66#04):
> Martin Stern wrote (MJ 66#03):
>> David Tzohar wrote (MJ 66#02):
>>> Ashkenazi communities especially chassidim have a custom of making
>>> "LeCHaYiM" on an alcoholic beverage before and during the HaKaFoT.
>> This is definitely NOT the custom of those Ashkenazim who come from the
>> Gemanophone lands. I don't know how one can eat or drink anything after
>> davening shacharit before making kiddush. I have heard that some people do
>> make kiddush on a shot of whiskey but I don't know how they justify it when
>> drinking less than a revi'it (or at least melo lugmav [a cheekful]). Perhaps
>> someone can enlighten me on this.
> Galicia was different.
> 1) Wine or yash.  Wine was expensive and difficult to get. Therefore, it was
> common to use yash (abbreviation for yayin saruf - burnt wine (distilled) ...
> My father told me that several communities in Galicia had communal takanot
> mandating that everyone use yash rather than grape wine for kiddusha rabba
> (daytime kiddush).  This was a social takkanah - as only the rich could afford
> wine - so was meant as an equalizer ... At the stage he was able to, he
> deliberately chose using yash for kiddusha rabba, and this is my mintage too.
> ...

My thanks to Meir for this explanation. However, I cannot see why it would
justify deliberately using schnapps rather than wine under present-day
conditions where it is more expensive than grape juice, which would qualify as
wine but was not readily available in earlier generations.

> I would add that for those of us concerned for too much drinking, as Martin
> Stern is, you would not want to require Melo lugmav ...

On the contrary, by requiring it, one might discourage using schnapps because of
the difficulty in drinking such a large amount in a short time. That might help
counter the danger of becoming addicted to spirits which has been a serious
social problem for the last few centuries since they became readily available,
probably on much the same scale as, if not greater than, the use of addictive
drugs nowadays.

> So therefore, yes, it is a real minhag to make daytime kiddush on a small
> volume of whiskey - even if it wasn't the case for Germany.  I would add that
> there is a Halacha of being dan lechaf zchut - judging favorably - so one's
> first reaction on coming on an unfamiliar mintage should be more that this is
> interesting rather than this is assur (forbidden) - even if my customs and
> halachic approach might forbid it.

I thought I was being dan lechaf zchut when I asked if someone could enlighten
me as to why some people prefer to make kiddush on a shot of whiskey - not that
it is certainly absolutely assur. However I am still not convinced that Meir's
historical analysis justifies it under current market conditions. Can anyone
justify its continuation nowadays?

Martin Stern


End of Volume 66 Issue 5