Volume 66 Number 30 
      Produced: Sat, 14 Jan 23 15:04:26 -0500

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

Cephalon 11-Piece Pots and Pans Set, Oil-Infused Ceramic Cookware (2)
    [Leah Gordon  Irwin Weiss]
Dying declaration (2)
    [Ari Trachtenberg  Yisrael Medad]
Same sink for meat and milk 
    [Steven Oppenheimer]
    [Micha Berger]
Taker but not giver? 
    [Meir Shinnar]


From: Leah Gordon <leahgordonmobile@...>
Date: Thu, Jan 12,2023 at 06:17 PM
Subject: Cephalon 11-Piece Pots and Pans Set, Oil-Infused Ceramic Cookware

Yitzchok Levine (MJ 66#29) asks about the kashrut of oil-infused cookware, which
apparently an employee of the manufacturer (Cephalon) declared to be not kosher.

I had never heard of this product, but was intrigued.  Apparently, that same
company claims that it uses pure olive oil to "infuse" the cookware.
Interestingly, a competitor (Victoria) advertises that they season their
cookware only with "kosher-certified flaxseed oil".  I would be shocked if one
of these companies used a non-vegetarian oil, or a common allergen oil (i.e.
lard, suet, peanut, or tree-nut oil) because of the certain blowback from the
public.  (My own son is allergic to soy and corn, so I might still hesitate to
use a product like that lest it have one of these less common allergens.)

It has been my unrelated experience that company employees err on the side of
saying "it's not kosher" rather than risk being wrong the other way, and I would
not necessarily conclude that the pots are treif to use.

For example, we once went to the Hershey's Ice Cream store in Pennsylvania (not
affiliated with the chocolate company) and asked if they were kosher. The lady
behind the counter said "we do not serve any kosher food here", but we later
found out that this was not the case.  We knew it was false at that time, since
they sold sealed sodas, but it turned out that the ice cream was certified
kosher as well (circa 2014?), I believe under the kof-K.

HOWEVER, even if the oil were non-kosher, isn't there a more complicated
analysis that has to be done rabbinically, in terms of taste imparted, purpose
of the oil, amount of oil, etc.?  That would be someone else's job on M.J!!

--Leah S. R. Gordon

From: Irwin Weiss <irwin@...>
Date: Thu, Jan 12,2023 at 08:17 PM
Subject: Cephalon 11-Piece Pots and Pans Set, Oil-Infused Ceramic Cookware

Professor Levine (MJ 66#29) received some of this cookware as a gift. Apparently
the packaging makes no statement that the product is kosher, nor that it is not
kosher. Professor Levine suggests that this is misleading.

How can one be misled by the information on the product where it makes no
mention, one way or the other, as to whether it is kosher? Is there some sort of
affirmative obligation to declare one's own product not to be kosher?

Irwin Weiss
Baltimore, Maryland 


From: Ari Trachtenberg <trachten@...>
Date: Thu, Jan 12,2023 at 03:17 PM
Subject: Dying declaration

In response to my query (MJ 66#29), I found the source for a dying declaration
in the Talmud in Gittin 15a - divrei shchiv mera [the words of a deathly ill
individual), which appear to mirror (and, presumably, form the basis) for the
secular law on dying declarations.


From: Yisrael Medad  <yisrael.medad@...>
Date: Thu, Jan 12,2023 at 06:17 PM
Subject: Dying declaration

In response to Ari Trachtenberg's query (MJ 66#29) regarding a dying man's
declaration in Halacha, I refer him to the Rambam, Mishneh Torah, Sefer Kinyan,
Zechiyah uMattanah, Chapter Eight, para. 3 on for a start.

Yisrael Medad


From: Steven Oppenheimer <steven.oppenheimer@...>
Date: Thu, Jan 12,2023 at 09:17 PM
Subject: Same sink for meat and milk

The question of the permissibility of using one sink for both meat and dairy has
been dealt with by the poskim.

In America, years ago, it was unusual for people to have two sinks.

Rav Moshe Feinstein wrote a responsum (Y.D. 1:42) dated 5 Elul 5718 (1958) in
which he permits using one sink for both meat and dairy.  He explains that
requiring separate inserts to be placed into the sink is too burdensome and
women will complain.

In America, most people who have only one sink rely on this opinion of Rav Moshe
Feinstein.  Rav Moshe allows one to wash both types of dishes in the same sink
(at separate times) if one uses separate sink racks for meat and dairy.   As
long as the dishes aren't sitting on the sink itself there is no concern about
ta'am (tastes) from meat and milk creating an issur (of basar bechalav).

When there is a stream of  hot water (iruy) that falls directly onto meat
residue sitting in the sink, the meat taste is only absorbed into a kelipah of
the sink surface under the meat residue.  The only way basar bechalav can be
created in the sink basin is if water that is yad soledet bo runs directly over
a piece of meat sitting in the basin and then having the exact same occurrence
take place with milk within the next 24 hours. This possibility is so remote,
that Rav Moshe rules one need not be concerned about it. Rav Moshe doesn't
address the possibility that hot meat gravy and dairy liquid were poured into
the sink within 24 hours, but, apparently, he also considers this very unlikely.
 Rav Moshe maintains that even if a dish is placed directly on the spot that
absorbed ta'am basar bechalav (the taste of meat and milk), the dish remains
unaffected since iruy (pouring hot liquid) can't effect two transfers (to both
the sink and the dish).

The requirement to use a separate sink rack is simply an additional precaution
so that the utensils dont actually touch the sink. However, if they do, they are
still considered kosher.

Moreover, the drain should remain clear so that the water does not back up and
touch the utensils. However, should this occur, neither Minchat Yitzchak nor Rav
Moshe would require that the utensils be koshered.  Our sinks are considered to
be a keli sheini.  According to Rama (Y.D. 95:3), milk and meat dishes soaked
together in a keli sheni do not have to be koshered even if they are dirty.

Today, thanks to our relative affluence, many homes have two separate sinks for
meat and dairy.  However, there is certainly on whom to rely should one only
have one sink.

Steven Oppenheimer, D.M.D.


From: Micha Berger <micha@...>
Date: Mon, Jan 9,2023 at 03:17 PM
Subject: Subjectivity

Joel Rich wrote (MJ 66#29):

> In a recent on-line publication from the OU, there was an interesting piece
> which merits discussion:

>> Q. I am a finicky person. Many things that I find repulsive are innocuous
>> for most people. Is the halacha of bal teshaktzu [do not do anything
>> repulsive] established by the reaction of most people or is it applied
>> individually for each person according to their sensitivities? 
>> ...
>> Thus, from both sources, it is clear that bal teshaktzu is relative to
>> each individual.

> Are there any overarching insights into when we look at the individual's
> idiosyncracies (as here) and when we say batla daato [we ignore his individual
> sensitivities] and go by your average Yossi?

I wonder how a subjective definition of sheqetz would work.

In a lot and maybe even most cases, people don't do something they consider all
that gross. Rather, they take one step in that direction, it seems normal after
once or twice, and then the next step ... And next thing one knows, the person
is doing something that would have made them cringe when the downward spiral began.

This isn't an issue with a "teshaqtzu" that is defined by communal norm or by
objective Torah-derived kinds of behaviors.

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger
Author: Widen Your Tent
- https://amzn.to/2JRxnDF


From: Meir Shinnar <chidekel@...>
Date: Fri, Jan 13,2023 at 03:17 PM
Subject: Taker but not giver?

Joel Rich wrote (MJ 66#29):

> I heard an interesting comment from a Rabbi during a recent shiur. He stated
> that he had been contacted by an international bone marrow registry telling 
> him that he was a partial match and to come down for further testing. He 
> consulted with a number of poskim and they told him he was not required to  
> get tested. He told one posek that if the recipient was a frum Jew, that he 
> would do it. The posek told him, very good. The general response from the 
> poskim was based on the fact that since the majority of likely recipients 
> were not Jewish, he didn't have to do it. (I"m guessing due to lo taamod only
> being for Jews)
> I suppose we have a similar ethical question with heart transplants if we 
> won't donate, but will take. It seems to me in this case there's an additional
> halachic issue. It appears to me that if there's a partial match, you can't 
> look at the general population of registrants and ask what's the likelihood 
> the person is Jewish, since the partial match gives us some further 
> information and we would have to use Bayesian statistics to determine whether 
> in fact the assumption that the majority of likely matches were not Jewish 
> should be updated for the additional information that there is a partial
> match. Any thoughts?

This issue keeps coming up in multiple different forms (eg, doctors and
ambulances and non-Jews on shabbat, heart transplants.  We had the identical
issue about bone marrow transplants come up in a mail-jewish discussion in the
2000s. (I don't have reference handy)

The gaon Rav Yechiel Weinberg zt"l (the Seridei Eish), in a letter to his child
hood friend, bemoaned the fact that it used to be that everyone accepted the
Meiri's view - that the halachot in the gmara about relations with non-Jews are
to the immoral idolaters of their time, and not to the current non-Jews.  Now,
however, some people are whispering that we don't follow the Meiri, and some are
even saying it loudly.

The sources Joel Rich cites are clearly amongst those the Seridei Eish bemoaned.

Ignoring for a moment moral issues, but on practical consequences.  From a
practical viewpoint, in Bergen County, in early 2000s, the local volunteer
ambulance corps, which had (and has) a large Orthodox presence, asked them to
set up protocols to deal with Shabbat calls - which were to the entire community
- both Jews and non-Jews. Some rabbanim objected.  They called in Rav Moshe
Tendler for advice, who told them Rav Moshe's position.  In Russia, if word got
out a Jew did not treat non-Jews on Shabbat, the entire Jewish community of that
town would be wiped out.  Therefore, the heter of darchei shalom - that some
things are done because the Torah's ways are ways of peace - clearly applies.

Lest we think this only applies to Russia, one of the issues driving the Crown
Heights pogrom was the (false) rumor that Hatzoloh left the black children to
die (when Shabbat was coming) because they were black.  This is still an issue.
 I used to work in the field of heart transplants, and there is no question that
the refusal of Orthodox Jews to donate creates antisemitism - and affects their

However, what is described is far far worse than these examples.  At least in
those cases, there was a halachic prohibition.  Here there is no halachic
prohibition - just that the rabbanim and poskim involved are willing to ignore
the heter of mipne darkhei shalom and just don't view the non-Jews as fully
human - and worthy of our care.  (Note that ben Azzai holds that the most
important verse in the Torah - more than ve'ahavata lere'acha camocha - love
your neighbor as yourself- is zeh sefer toldot adam - this is the book of
generations of man- that we are all human.

That this should happen so soon after the Shoah is proof of the moral
degeneration of the rabbanim and poskim involved - and of the community that
will follow them. We need to publicly speak out against this.  This is not
merely profoundly (and gut wrenchingly) immoral, but a Chillul shem shamayimm
befarhesya - public desecration of God's name.

For those that this is not sufficient, I would add that this also endangers all
Orthodoxy in America (as in the ambulance discussion above) - and the blatant
racism (and this is clearly racism) of those involved - and the communal
tolerance of such racism - is one factor driving many of our community away from

I would ask Joel, as a pubic service and to protect the Jewish community from
its predators (and these rabbanim and poskim should be viewed as predators on
the community), to publicize the rabbis and poskim involved - so we know who to
avoid.  Such publicity would be true lo taamod al dam re'echa - not standing by
allowing someone to die.

Meir Shinnar


End of Volume 66 Issue 30