Volume 7 Number 8

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Artificial Insemination (2)
         [Seth Lawrence Ness, Ellen Krischer]
         [A. M. Goldstein]
Holocaust Commemorations
         [Bruce Krulwich]
House in Jerusalem
         [Josh Klein]
How much of the Hagada do we need to say?
         [Gary Davis]
         [Sam Zisblatt]
New Prayers
         [Joseph Greenberg]
Rov's Hespid in Israel
         [Steve Edell]
The Ashmodai File discussion
         [Avi Hyman]
Yom HaShoah in Halachic Literature
         [Michael Pitkowsky]
         [Joseph P. Wetstein]


From: Seth Lawrence Ness <ness@...>
Date: Tue, 27 Apr 93 22:24:42 -0400
Subject: Artificial Insemination

Regarding all the teshuvot quoted about artificial insemination, they seem
to be about AI from a donor. I believe that AI from the husband is
generally permitted, but could someone confirm this?

Seth L. Ness                         Ness Gadol Hayah Sham

From: <elk@...> (Ellen Krischer)
Date: Wed, 28 Apr 93 17:35:54 -0400
Subject: Re: Artificial Insemination

In reaction to the last posting on this issue, there are a couple of
things I think we should be clear about in further discussions:

1.  The term "Artificial Insemination" can refer to two halachically
    different though medically similar things:
       a.  insemination with the husband's sperm
       b.  insemination with someone else's sperm

    While Rabbinic literature may discuss (b) as grounds for divorce,
    do they really say the same thing about (a)?

2.  Likening the insemination process in any way to intercourse because
    of the position of the women relative to the doctor makes the 
    (not-very-politically-correct) assumption that the doctor is a man.

Ellen Krischer


From: A. M. Goldstein <MZIESOL@...>
Date: Wed, 28 Apr 93 01:36:11 -0400
Subject: Cemeteries

Need the names & addresses of cemeteries in Brooklyn for someone who is
trying to locate the kever--grave--of a grandparent;only known that it's
in Brooklyn.  Hope someone out there can help.


From: <krulwich@...> (Bruce Krulwich)
Date: Tue, 27 Apr 93 13:45:37 -0400
Subject: Holocaust Commemorations

Just a quick thought.

When I was growing up, Tisha B'Av meant very little to me.  I went and
heard Eicha [Lamentations] at night.  Could I relate to the churban
[destruction]?  No.  Was anything done at the Conservative
school/camps/etc that I went to to make more out of Tisha B'Av than
this?  No.  Just the Temple (bb,a) that I (unfortunately) could feel
very little for.

On the other hand, Yom HaShoah was a big thing.  Movies, lectures,
exhibits, etc.  The holocaust is much more "real-feeling" than the
churban haBayis.  Tisha B'Av was a holiday with a megila to read.  Yom
HaShoah commemorated something real, something important.

This is why I think that holocaust commemorations should be incorporated
into Tisha B'Av.

Tisha B'Av is discussed in all the sources as the designated day of
mourning for bad events that happen to the Jews.  Eicha discusses the
churban, and the kinos [supplimentary readings] discuss scores of
horrible events since then.  The sources discuss the period before Tisha
B'Av as the time designated in the Jewish calendar as a time of
mourning.  "From the start of Av, happiness is reduced."

I agree 100% that holocaust rememberance is crucial to maintanance of
the Jewish identity in America, as well as to keeping "alive" the memory
of what happened.  The problem I see is that when we seperate Yom
HaShoah from Tisha B'Av we diminish Tisha B'Av, and indeed the history
of Jewish persecution, in the eyes of both irreligious and religious

I have seen Kinos written about the holocaust.  I'm sure there are
others that I haven't seen.  I know many places that show the movie
"Shoah" on Tisha B'Av, or use other means to focus on the holocaust on
that day.  This is what Tisha B'Av is for.  Besides linking the
holocaust with the other terrible events of history, this allows Jews to
attach some "real" emotions to Tisha B'Av which are otherwise hard for
many to muster.

Dov (Bruce) Krulwich


From: Josh Klein <VTFRST@...>
Date: Wed, 28 Apr 93 13:04 N
Subject: House in Jerusalem

A friend of mine in Chicago is looking for housing in Jerusalem for
himself and his family (wife and 2 girls ages 4 and 6) during his
sabbatical at Haddasah Hospital from mid-June 1993 to mid-June 1994.
Anyone with knowledge of possibilities in this area please contact me,
"attn. Josh Klein". Thanks.  Josh Klein VTFRST@Volcani


From: Gary Davis <davis@...>
Date: Thu, 22 Apr 93 10:27:29 -0400
Subject: How much of the Hagada do we need to say?

It is interesting that E. Adler thinks we could satisfy the Halachic
requirements of reading the Hagada in about a minute, but I think this
humourous comment must be taken very lightly.  The seder itself is a
gathering of Jews that symbolizes the survival of Judaism.  It forms an
essential part of our collective memory that survives from childhood and
is transferred as a happy experience through the generations.  Thilling
the thread too much could cause it to break!

- Gary Davis


From: <zisblatt@...> (Sam Zisblatt)
Date: Tue, 27 Apr 93 22:46:40 -0400
Subject: L'Chaim

I apologize for not recalling who may have asked for this information
but the "L'CHAIM" newsletter put out by the Lubavitch Youth Organization
can be ordered for $30 per year from : L'chaim 1408 President St.,
Brooklyn, NY 11213.

Sam Zisblatt           <zisblatt@...>


From: <Joseph_Greenberg@...> (Joseph Greenberg)
Date: Tue, 27 Apr 93 11:28:06 -0400
Subject: New Prayers

In response to Nachum Babkoff's story that had the summation of the
"isur" (prohibition) of originating new prayers, I would like to relate
a similar situation. For those of you that are members of Young Israel,
you may recall that in a recent issue (I think the most recent, in fact)
of Viewpoint (the official publication of the National Council of YI), a
new prayer was suggested to be said publicly during Shabbat Services for
the plight of the missing Israeli soldiers (presumably in Lebanon). The
notion was that this would be recited at about the same time as the
prayer for the welfare of the State of Israel and the prayer for the
government. Our rabbi has indicated that he feels that we have no
tradition for "public prayer", and that this type of prayer is best
inserted privately in the Amidah. He feels that this would also apply to
the prayer for the State of Israel, but he knows the ruckus this would
cause. I personally diagree with this position, as I think that we
clearly _have_ a tradition of public prayer - what is a minyan, if not
public prayer?
  I am not sure if the Rabbi's position is based on Zionist issues or
not, but I think that it is related to the "old-time Rabbi/Mohel's"
position we have heard about. I consider this unfortunate, and
ultimately politically motivated. After all, we still have public fasts
called for various things, which usually include additional teffilot


From: <edell@...> (Steve Edell)
Date: Tue, 27 Apr 93 13:37:52 -0400
Subject: Rov's Hespid in Israel

Thank you Eli Turkel & Mike Gerver for Divrei on the Rav.  His Hespid in 
Israel was this past Thursday, and unfortunately, I was in Milu'im (reserve
duty).  Can anyone give a summary of what was said at Yeshurin (the syn. 
where it was.

Thanks a lot.

Steven Edell, YC '73, WSSW '76.


From: <AJHYMAN@...> (Avi Hyman)
Date: Thu, 22 Apr 93 10:23:24 -0400
Subject: The Ashmodai File discussion

        A few days ago, someone left a post on another net which
detailed a letter refering to a Jewish political struggle against the
modern State of Israel. (I think?)
        Anyway, the letter was reportedly signed by someone who called
themselves Ashmodai. Well, I found this particularly provocative, since
I associated Ashmodai with the Jewish devil concept.  I replied to the
post saying that Ashmodai was the devil, so what's the deal?
        HRubin (of Purdue) responded to my post saying that the Tanakh
has no devil concept.  I investigated and found at least four Jewish
sources for Ashmodai as a demon (at least 2 Talmudic aggadahs,
references in Kabbalah, and the Book of Tobit).
        HRubin stated that none of these are Tanakhic sources. Granted.
But then I asked HRubin if Judaism = Tanakhic Judaism?
        I am curious to hear what others think of these devilish issues...

[HRubin may likely think that Judaism = Tanakhic Judaism, but that
clearly is not the accepted thought here. The issue of the "devil" in
traditional Jewish thought is in my opinion an interesting one. At one
point I looked at many of the medrashim concerning the story in the
beginning of Bereshit about Hava and the Snake. From what I remember,
earlier medrashim discussed the snake as "just" that; a snake that
walked on legs and talked. Later midrashim basically turned the snake
into either the Satan - devil or the Yetzer Harah - Evil Inclination. As
far as Ashmadai goes, though, wasn't he the king of the shadim, I guess
also translated as evil spirits and devils, rather than the Devil, as an
angel which the Satan is? Mod.]


From: <mipitkowsky@...> (Michael Pitkowsky)
Date: Tue, 27 Apr 93 13:54:39 -0400
Subject: Yom HaShoah in Halachic Literature

I have found a few articles in halachic journals concerning the
celebration of Yom HaShoah.

-R. Menachem Mendel Kasher, Noam, vol. 19, 5737
-R. Spitz, HaMaor, vol. 33, May-June 1981, pp. 13-17 and the comments 
following his article by the editor R. Meir Amsel


From: Joseph P. Wetstein <jpw@...>
Date: Wed, 28 Apr 93 17:35:57 -0400
Subject: Z'manim

I would appreciate it if someone could send me info on the z'manim for
k'riat shema, tefilla, mincha, etc, according to the various shitas.

Yossi Wetstein


End of Volume 7 Issue 8