Volume 7 Number 80

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

A Question about Trop
         [Mel Barenholtz]
         [Deborah Sommer]
Help with dealing with the loss of a child
         [Marsha Rapp]
Jason's Bread Crumbs
         [Bruce Bernstein]
Jewish Thought Processes
         [Leon Dworsky]
Kohen Duchening with Love
         [Mechael Kanovsky]
Litmus Test
         [Joel Storch]
Nesiat Kapayim (Duchening) by a Kohen Mechallel Shabbat
         [Josh Rapps]
Pepsi is still kosher in Eretz Yisrael
         [David Charlap]
Rav Lichtenstein's Hesped
         [David Charlap]
         [Janice Gelb]
Shomer shabbat Girl Scouts?
         [Elisheva Schwartz]


From: <mel@...> (Mel Barenholtz)
Date: 15 Jun 1993  14:30 EDT
Subject: A Question about Trop

At the beginning of parshas Sh'lakh there is a list of the m'raglim
[spies].  The list is a series of p'sukim [verses], each beginning with
the two words - L'MATEY xxx - and the trop [cantillation] in almost
every case is ZAKEF KATAN.

However, in the case of Efrayim, the trop is MERKHAH TIPKHAH.

Can anyone tell me why the trop in this pasuk is different from all the others?


From: <dway@...> (Deborah Sommer)
Date: Sun, 20 Jun 93 11:14:22 -0400
Subject: Ethiopia

I may be going to ethiopia for the summer, and wondered if anyone 
knew the situation of shuls, etc (or just general advice). thanks



From: Marsha Rapp <MARSHA@...>
Date: Thu, 17 Jun 93 07:50:33 -0400
Subject: Help with dealing with the loss of a child

Having just lost a 5 year old in a tragic accident, I was wondering if
any body has any suggestions on readings to help my husband and myself
come to terms with our loss.

Please e-mail replies to me at <Marsha@...>
Marsha Rapp


From: Bruce Bernstein <bernstein@...>
Date: Wed, 16 Jun 93 12:54:44 -0400
Subject: Jason's Bread Crumbs

To the best of my knowlege, which in this case comes from the local
(Capital District, NY) Shaliach's Rebbitzen, Jason's Bread crumbs are
not pas yisroel.  Unger's however, is.

Bruce Bernstein


From: <ljd@...> (Leon Dworsky)
Date: Wed, 9 Jun 93 10:15:42 -0400
Subject: Jewish Thought Processes

An illuminating book on jewish thought processes that should be helpful
to Dov Krulwich's studies, is R' Moshe Chiam Luzzatto's "Derech T'vunot"
("The Ways of Reason").  This 18nth century classic is available in
Hebrew/English, with pointing added to the hebrew, from Feldheim Publishers.

Leon Dworsky    <ljd@...>


From: <KANOVSKY@...> (Mechael Kanovsky)
Date: Wed, 9 Jun 93 16:44:42 -0400
Subject: Re: Kohen Duchening with Love

When a cohen goes up to bless the congregation (duchaning) the brachah
that he recites before he says the three verses is a unique one. The
bracha (benediction) ends this way "vetzivanu levarech et amo yisrael
be'ahava" loosely translated it means that g-d commanded us (the
cohanim) to bless the people of Israel lovingly. Rav Soloveichik zt"l in
his book "al hatshuva" (on repentence) writes that this is the only
mitzva that one has to do in a loving way, that when the cohen duchans
he should not have malice towards anybody. He brings the Rambam who says
that when the cohen recites the bracha before duchaning his hands should
be clenched into a fist and when he turns around to do the duchaning his
fingers should be spread open.  Rav Soloveichik further explains that a
clenched fist symolizes hate as in fist fights etc. and the oposite of
that is an open hand i.e. when the cohen turns around to duchen he has
to leave all his hate behind and bless the nation of Israel lovingly.
Therefore if there is a cohen whom the locals can't stand I guess it
would be difficult for him to do this mitzvah in a loving manner.

mechael kanovsky


From: Joel Storch <storch@...>
Date: Wed, 9 Jun 93 12:25:07 -0400
Subject: Litmus Test

Mike Gerver's point (Vol. 7 #64) is well taken. In the summer of 1970 I
worked at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. There was one
Conservative shule in Oak Ridge whose members by and large were not
Shomer Shabbos (most even drove to shule on Shabbos). The Rabbi at that
time, Rabbi Jay Marcus, was a musmach of YU and this was his first
pulpit position. I asked him how he landed up in Oak Ridge, and he told
me that as an alternative to serving as a Chaplain in the military, he
had the option of serving as Rabbi in a "deprived" area of the U.S.
Apparently, at that time, there were several congregations in desperate
need of Rabbinical leadership and even orthodox Rabbis were called upon
to assume the posts. His acceptance of the pulpit was done with the
approval of RIETS. The possibilty of this shule changing its policy on
mixed seating wasn't even an issue.


From: <jr@...> (Josh Rapps)
Date: Tue, 8 Jun 93 02:15:38 -0400
Subject: Nesiat Kapayim (Duchening) by a Kohen Mechallel Shabbat

The Mishneh Berurah (Orach Chayim Siman 128, Seif 37, note 134)
states that not only should a kohen who has worshipped Avodah Zarah (A'Z)
not be permitted to Duchen, but even one who is Mechallel Shabbos
Bepharhesiah (violates the shabbos in public) should not Duchen either.

In the OU publication Mesorah Number 2 (dated Tishrei 5750, Oct. 1989)
in the section that has articles written by talmidim of the Rov
summarizing his chidushim, there is a discussion on this topic (pg 58).
The Rov ZT"L (based on what he received from his father R. Moshe ZT"L)
claims that the problem with a Kohen that worshipped Avodah Zorah is that
such a Kohen retains the title of a Maus (disgusting, revolting, repulsing
take your choice :-) ). Even though Teshuvah (repentance) is accepted
from such an individual, according to some opinions such a person should
still not duchen even after Teshuvah, as he retains the title of a Maus
(see the Rambam in Hilchot Biat Mikdash Perek 9 Halacha 13).

The Rov is quoted as stating in the name of his father that had the
reason to prevent a Kohen that worships A'Z from Duchening derived from
a psul (defect) in the Gavra (in the individual himself) so long as he
does not stop his A'Z activities and do Teshuvah, then I could have
applied the same principle to someone who is Mechallel Shabbat: that
where there is a psul in the Gavra, that he is called a Mechallel
Shabbat, such a person may not Duchen.  However since according to this
interpretation the psul is because the Kohen, even after Teshuvah
retains the psul of Maus, there is no reason to apply this to a kohen
who is Mechallel Shabbat and to prevent him from Duchening. The
Mechallel Shabbat does not aquire the status of Maus that can not be
removed even through Teshuvah. Only the one who worships A'Z. The
article notes that R. Moshe used to insist that Kohanim that were
Mechalleley Shabbat should Duchen in order that they not forget that
they are Kohanim.

josh rapps


From: <dic5340@...> (David Charlap)
Date: Thu, 10 Jun 93 11:24:55 -0400
Subject: RE: Pepsi is still kosher in Eretz Yisrael

<BLEHMAN@...> (B Lehman) writes:

>   I'd also like to suggest that hechsher for a jewish company
>(especially in Jewish Israel) is not the same as the ou in the us or

Is Pepsico a Jewish company?  If so, this is the first I've heard of
it.  If not, then I think it's wrong to hold them to Jewish standards.


From: <dic5340@...> (David Charlap)
Date: Mon, 7 Jun 93 12:56:43 -0400
Subject: Re: Rav Lichtenstein's Hesped

<jr@...> (Josh Rapps) writes:

>...we do the Mitzvot because HAshem commanded us to. Our (often feeble)
>attempts to rationalize the mitzvot must not interfere with performing
>the mitzvot.

For those that see this as simply "following blindly" without
understanding, I would like to share an explanation that I heard.  Rabbi
Block (of Chabad, Morristown, NJ) explained it as such:

Which is close to infinity?  One or a million?  Neither!  they are both
just as far.  No finite value can connect with the infinite.  But the
infinite can take the initiative and connect with the finite.  So too,
God is infinite, and we are finite - we can only connect with God by
letting Him take the initiative - which is the giving of the Torah at

In more mundane terms:

Suppose there is a great king, and a nobody in the street wants to be
recognized by him.  What can he do to favorably get the king's
attention?  The answer is that he probably can not do anything to get

On the other hand, what if the king wants to give the man an opportunity
to be recognized?  The king can ask the man to do _ANYTHING_ at all -
maybe polish the doorknobs on the palace.  If the man does what the king
asks, he will be recognized by the king, even if the king would ignore
the man's doing something else for him.

So too, we are like that man, and God is like the king.  God gave us a
set of commandments.  Doing them, no matter whether we understand why or
not, gets us noticed and favored by God.  Doing something else probably
will not.  Not because the something else is any less worthy, but
because God didn't ask that of us.


From: <Janice.Gelb@...> (Janice Gelb)
Date: Tue, 8 Jun 93 19:58:44 -0400
Subject: Re: Shavuot

In mail.jewish Vol. 7 #66 Digest, Kevin Taragin writes:

> Another peculiar fact about Shavuot which reminds us of Matan
> Torah is the two lambs sacrificed as "Shalmei Tzibbur" {a "shalamim"
> type sacrifice paid for by community funds} [Vayikra 23:19].

At the Tikun I attended, someone pointed out that it seemed rather odd
that Shavuot was considered a dairy-related holiday given this required
sacrifice. Anyone have any insight on this?

Janice Gelb                  | (415) 336-7075     
<janiceg@...>   | "A silly message but mine own" (not Sun's!) 


From: Elisheva Schwartz <es63@...>
Date: Tue, 15 Jun 93 10:03:58 EDT
Subject: Shomer shabbat Girl Scouts?

I come from several generations of Girl Scouts, and would very much
like my daughter (now 4 1/2) to have the same opportunity.  Does anyone
know of a Shomer Shabbat troop in Manhattan or the Bronx?  Failing
that, is anyone else interested in starting such a troop in the next
few years?  (I think that Brownies starts at around 7 yrs.)
Many thanks, 
Elisheva Schwartz


End of Volume 7 Issue 80