Volume 66 Number 06 
      Produced: Mon, 24 Oct 22 10:38:20 -0400

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

Mappiq Hey 
    [Michael Frankel]
Federal judge places temporary stay on N Y gun ban (3)
    [Avraham Friedenberg  Chaim Casper  Stuart Pilichowski]
Rav Schwab on the Role of Women (2)
    [Yisrael Medad   Joseph Kaplan]
Yash for kiddush 
    [Meir Shinnar]


From: Michael Frankel <michaeljfrankel@...>
Date: Mon, Oct 24,2022 at 01:17 AM
Subject:  Mappiq Hey

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. I am thinking specifically of the name of God 
> when spelled aleph, lamed, vav, mapik heh, which is found several times in 
> the Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur davening and, of course, in many other places. 
> As has been pointed out previously in this group, the mapik indicates that 
> the vowel (patach) beneath the heh should be pronounced before the letter, so
> it's not ha, but ah. 

David's comment to the effect "the vowel (patach) beneath the heh should be
pronounced before the letter, so it's not ha, but ah might be confusing to some
readers. Because the function of a mappiq is not to indicate incidence of a
patach gnuvoh (also referred to as an alef) gnuvoh.  Else we would expect to
see mappiq appear in other words ending with a patach preceding the guttural -
(such as the word for firmament = RQIAH), but we never do, because alef gnuvoh
was readily obvious without it.

And as long as were talking mappiqs, mappiq does not mean dot.  Rather, mappiq
refers to the sound, which is mufaq = brought out.  Which means that there
should also be "invisible mappiq heys" (a category I just made up, in case
nobody else thought of it first), i.e. words pronounced with a mappiq hey but
without the visual cue of a dot in the hey.  This occurs every time a hey
appears interior to any word and pointed with a shvoh.  Since any such shvoh
must be a noch, it thus must be pronounced (sound brought out). A universe of
examples (ok, a lot of examples anyway), e.g. the third person male sing. of the
verb will be = YHYH, and its various declensions, invariably mispronounced by
the baal qoreh as if the hey in YHYH were pointed with a shvoh noh. (oh, the
horror).  Or Pdahel (in Bmidbor 34/28).  Etc.

Mechy Frankel


From: Avraham Friedenberg <elshpen@...>
Date: Sun, Oct 23,2022 at 03:17 PM
Subject: Federal judge places temporary stay on N Y gun ban

Professor Levine wrote (MJ 65#05):

> 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?

When we lived in the Shomron, on Yom Kippur we always davened at a Hesder
Yeshiva one neighborhood over from ours. I do not know if the Roshei Yeshiva
were armed, but at least one of the gabbaim was, as were many of those davening
there. (At least one woman was armed as well.)

Seeing this reminded me of the old Rabbi Small mystery series (Monday the Rabbi
Took Off, Tuesday the Rabbi Saw Red, etc.) I joked to a friend that I could
write a new book for the series: Yom Kippur the Gabbai Packed Heat.

Avraham (Alan) Friedenberg
Beersheva, Israel

From: Chaim Casper <info@...>
Date: Sun, Oct 23,2022 at 04:17 PM
Subject: Federal judge places temporary stay on N Y gun ban

In response to Professor L Levine (MJ 66#05):

I am currently involved with two communities. 

Here in North Miami Beach, every shul has an armed guard on Shabbat morning. The
guards are connected to each other via a walkie talkie system so that the guard
from synagogue A can go to synagogue B if needed.  In addition, due to
availability of government funding, every shul has a fence built around the
property so that a good faith effort can be made to force everyone to enter
through one door(s) where a guard can be on the lookout for anything "unusual".
  The reality is that some synagogues "encourage" everyone to use one door while
others are extremely lax in enforcing this basic security requirement. The
synagogue I currently daven in started a security program a number of years ago
with four members who carry guns.   I was one of the four.   As time went on,
three of the four left the synagogue which leaves me as the only internal armed
member.   I make it my business to introduce myself to that week's particular
guard and to say they should ask for me if they need my help.  

As for my Israeli home, I would guesstimate that 50% of the men who come to one
of the four (4) shuls on my moshav every day are armed.  That does offer some
safety assurance to me.  I would like to get an Israeli permit to carry a gun
but my understanding is that permits are only given to people under the age of
sixty (I am seventy years old).  

Since this is a halakhic discussion group, I think we should discuss whether one
can wear a gun on Shabbat either inside or outside of an eruv (an enclosure that
enables people to carry outside their homes on Shabbat).   The Mishnah in
Shabbat (6:4) says "A man cannot go outside (of the eruv on Shabbat) wearing a
sword, carrying a bow, carrying a shield, carrying a mace or carrying a spear
and if he does, he is obligated to bring a sin offering.  Rabbi Eliezer says
that these items are jewelry to a man" and thus would be acceptable to carry
(because they are considered as being worn) down the street without an eruv. 
The Shulhan Arukh rules like the first view in the Mishnah.  Thus, I can wear my
weapon only as long as I am in the respective eruv but if I walk outside of that
eruv, I wouldn't be allowed to wear my weapon.   Does anyone know of a posek
(halakhic ruler) who allows the carrying of a gun outside an eruv as per the
ruling of Rabbi Eliezer?   (Sources only, please).   It would seem to me that
personal security is paramount in this era of "open season" attacks on Jews in
synagogues, kosher markets and other places around the world.    

Two of my sons carry guns (to shul and all around).  I guess that makes me the
big shot and it makes them sons of a gun!

B'virkat Torah,
Chaim Casper
North Miami Beach, FL
Neve Mikhael, Israel

From: Stuart Pilichowski <stupillow@...>
Date: Mon, Oct 24,2022 at 03:17 AM
Subject: Federal judge places temporary stay on N Y gun ban

In response to Prof. Levine (MJ 66#05):

Are you asking if it's a question of sakanat nefoshot (putting yourself in
danger) by going to a synagogue that doesn't allow guns? Or are you talking

I guess it must be the former, because the latter isn't appropriate for
this forum. [That was my understanding - MOD]

Stuart Pilichowski

Mevaseret Zion, Israel

Phone 972- 527-222-827


From: Yisrael Medad  <yisrael.medad@...>
Date: Sun, Oct 23,2022 at 03:17 PM
Subject: Rav Schwab on the Role of Women

Prof. Levine quotes Rav Schwab, regarding women in Judaism:

> 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.

I am nonplussed.

a) That quotation is not from Tehillim 144:12. That Psalm is of David, not
Adam and the verse 12 there reads: "whose daughters are as corner-pillars
carved after the fashion of a palace". I am sure Levine was not intending
to deal with women's physical attributes. His quoted words rather are in
Tehillim 45:14.

b) Is there another statement that was left out?

c) In any case, if he is referring to the Haredi-style of Judaism, I would ask
he review the material of several women's groups, for example, Chochmat Nashim,
to realize there is another perspective.

Yisrael Medad

From: Joseph Kaplan <penkap@...>
Date: Sun, Oct 23,2022 at 04:17 PM
Subject: Rav Schwab on the Role of Women

Prof. Levine, after posting a quote from R Schwab about Jewish women (MJ 66#05)

> how many women today, even observant women, would agree with these statements.

In my experience, having discussed this general topic with many MO women over
the decades and from reading things they've written, my sense is that while most
would agree with some parts, they would not agree with its overall thrust. And I
know that I don't.



From: Meir Shinnar <chidekel@...>
Date: Sun, Oct 23,2022 at 08:17 PM
Subject: Yash for kiddush

Martin Stern wrote (MJ 66#05):

> Meir Shinnar wrote  (MJ 66#04):
>> 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 ... 
> 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.

Of course, people who don't have the custom are under no obligation to adopt it.
However, the use of hamar medina (drink of the country) for kiddusha rabba and
havdala is very old in Ashkenaz, and abolishing it quite problematic (chadash
assure min hatorah :)).

It is in the purview of a communal rav to advise/pasken for the community. 
However, while kosher grape juice and wine have been widely available for a long
time, I am unaware of any major posek who has tried to abolish the use of yash
for kiddush and havdala.  Indeed, Rav Moshe addresses what should be done if
wine or grape juice is not available - and what may be used instead - but does
not take an abolitionist position

I would add that the cavalier dismissal of other peoples minhagim because we do
differently is problematic.  As it is a legitimate custom (and I would add that
there are many occasions when wine/grape juice is not readily available). I will
keep this minhag (minhag avotenu befinu) which, as I pointed out in my original
post, also reminds some of us of the importance of concern for all members of
our community.

I agree that alcohol is a major issue for the Jewish community - and I drink a
small glaizele.  Recommending requiring larger volumes as an attempt to
discourage drinking does not make medical sense to me (those who drink too much
will take it as license to start big)

> 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?

The historical analysis is the origin of the minhag.  However, this is not a
minhag shtut (foolish minhag) or minhag taut (mistaken minhag). When do we
cavalierly dismiss such minhagim? This is the arrogance I was complaining about.

Meir Shinnar


End of Volume 66 Issue 6