Volume 8 Number 6

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Levi Doing Haftorah (4)
         [Najman Kahana, Art Kamlet, Arthur Roth, Jerry B Altzman]
Pepsi and Coca Cola (2)
         [Nachum Issur Babkoff, Janice Gelb]
         [Morris Podolak]


From: Najman Kahana <NAJMAN%<HADASSAH@...>
Date: Wed, 30 Jun 93 08:37 JST
Subject: Levi Doing Haftorah

>>From: <rotha@...> (Arthur Roth)

>>2. If a kohen has received the first aliyah and there is no Levi to
>>call for the second aliyah, the kohen takes another aliyah and makes a
>>second set of brachot.  The solution proposed by Steven Schwartz (have
>>the Levi forego his aliyah in order to take maftir) thus winds up getting
>>a second aliyah for the kohen in order to avoid a second aliyah for the
>>Levi.  This just doesn't seem right to me, but I have no sources for this
>>discomfort.  (I used to know these sorts of halachot like the back of my
>>hand, but I seem to have forgotten a lot of the details.)

Arthur is quite correct. The missing reference is Gittin Nun'Tet, which
puts this issue as Darchei Shalom (for the peace of the congregation).
The Rambam, in his day, removed this rule on the grounds that the (then)
current customs made it obsolete.  He restored the rule after seeing that its
removal created strife.
Based on the "spirit" of the rule, it would seem that, when faced by these
two choices, the Levi should give up Maftir.
As for me, I have always wanted Shlishi ....
Najman Kahana

From: <ask@...> (Art Kamlet)
Date: Wed, 30 Jun 93 11:43:24 -0400
Subject: Re: Levi Doing Haftorah

>From Shaul Wallach <f66204@...>
>It is even permissible for the same person to go up for all 7
>`aliyot if no one else knows how to read (Shulhan `Arukh, Orah Hayyim

>This might be phrased a bit more precisely. There is not only
>"no need to call a Levi" second, but it is not allowed at all (Orah
>Hayyim 135:6).

Is it not allowed at all to call a Levi second, or is it still
allowed if no one else knows how to read?

Art Kamlet   AT&T Bell Laboratories, Columbus   <ask@...>

From: <rotha@...> (Arthur Roth)
Date: Wed, 30 Jun 93 11:42:13 -0500
Subject: Levi Doing Haftorah

    Thanks to Isaac Balbin and Shaul Wallach for elucidating my original
comments.  I'd like to point out that their comments are connected to
each other.  Shaul confirmed my statement that a Levi need not be called
up at all if no kohen is present, and he added (which I didn't know)
that some authorities actually prohibit calling up the Levi under these
conditions, though many don't.  Isaac pointed out that the Levi's
position is subordinate to (and hence dependent upon) that of the kohen,
so that the same rules may not apply to the two of them with respect to
foregoing an aliyah.  The connection between these two ideas is that in
the absence of a kohen, the Levi need not (and as I have just learned
from Shaul, cannot according to some) be called up because the reason
for his special status is not applicable at that time.
    I assume that those who do not permit the Levi to be called up in
the absence of a kohen would still permit him to have a hosafa after
seven men have already been called.  Otherwise he would be unable to
receive any aliyah at all (except Maftir) simply because no kohen
happened to show up in that minyan.  Since I hadn't previously known of
this whole opinion, and since the assumption above is based on nothing
but my own logic, can somebody confirm that this assumption is correct?
Even if it is, I can picture a very unpleasant sort of situation that
could arise for those who follow this opinion on Yom Tov, when hosafot
are not permitted.  Of course, the lack of a kohen on Yom Tov presents
an even bigger problem than this, namely the necessity to omit the
    Finally, Shaul took issue with my statement that "there is no need
to call a Levi for the second aliyah" in the absence of a kohen, saying
that "no need" implies that it is optional when it is in fact
prohibited.  I agree completely.  I meant to say that there is no need
to call a Levi for the FIRST aliyah and inadvertently typed "second"
instead of "first".  The original point of this discussion was how to
"save" the Levi for Maftir, and my intent was to point out that there
exist circumstances under which no special measures (e.g., foregoing
one's honor, leaving the shul, etc.)  are needed to avoid giving the
Levi an aliyah altogether.  Since this issue was independent of the fact
that the appropriate aliyah, if any, for the Levi becomes the first
rather than the second under those circumstances, I didn't pay attention
to this detail in my statement.  So, Shaul, thanks for pointing out my
misstatement, but please understand that I never meant the detail you
were objecting to in the first place.  --- Arthur Roth

From: <jbaltz@...> (Jerry B Altzman)
Date: Tue, 29 Jun 93 14:43:03 -0400
Subject: Levi Doing Haftorah

I was in this position once, being the only levi in the shul and scheduled to
do the maftir (it was my bar-mitzvah parsha...) and BOOM in walks a cohen.
What happened was:
- The cohen got cohen
- I got levi
- when it came around to maftir, someone else got called up and made the
brachot and I read the actual maftir (he had a cold anyway, so he couldn't
read it) and then he made the after-b'rachot.

Of course, your mileage may vary, depending on what your rav says...

jerry b. altzman   Entropy just isn't what it used to be      +1 212 650 5617
<jbaltz@...>    jbaltz@columbia.edu        (HEPNET) NEVIS::jbaltz


From: <babkoff@...> (Nachum Issur Babkoff)
Date: Mon, 28 Jun 93 08:29:17 +0200
Subject: Pepsi and Coca Cola

I would like to respond to some of the latter postings, and especialy
to Shaul Wallach.

In one of the original postings on this topic, an argument meant to
justify the Bada"tz (Ultra Orthodox Court of Justice) decision, on the
grounds: "You want our Hechsher, meet our standards". Well, that
argument if taken to its honest conclusion means, that as far as the
RABANUT is concerned, it is THEY who must give a hechsher! What do I
mean? In my previous posting, I questioned the validity of the
Rabanut's decision to remove their Hechsher, based on the current
legal situation in Israel. Warren Burnstein made a similar comment.
The jist of the thing is as follows: 1. The Rabanut recieves its
charter, and funds, from the public. 2. Ergo, the Rabanut is an
administrative body, subject to the same requirements ANY
administrative body is. In the case of Kashrut, based on the SECULAR
kashrut law (statute), that means that they may act ONLY with
accordance to the law of Kashrut, as well as the general principles
that apply to EVERY administrative body (reasonableness etc.).

To this one should argue: If they won't accept our standards, THEY
CAN'T HAVE OUR MONEY! You see how that same argument used to justify
the non-state organized Kashrut bodies, boomerangs as far as state
endorsed Kashrut bodies are concerned? As a matter of fact, R. Shlomo
Pick alluded to this argument himself, when he made a statement
concerning the Rabanut as being "m'ta'am" (secular state endorsed),
although I wouldn't presume to represent his thoughts in this
particular argument.

Now as far as Rabbis quitting their positions if they are forced to
grant a hechsher, two questions arise:

1. Will they actualy do this?
2. Should they?

As far as the first question, I am not a prophet, but we can try to
see what has happened in the past, and based on that speculate on the
possible outcome.

The basis for the ruling that the Rabanut may remove a hechsher ONLY
where issues of kashrut were raised vis' a vis' the FOOD, was a case
in Jerusalem, where the Rabanut threatened to remove its hechsher for
two reasons; places where belly dancers occasionaly preformed, places
that held New-Years eve parties. The court ruled that the Rabanut may
remove their hechsher ONLY when there were hallachic violations in the
preparation of the food. The court gave the following example:
1. If the food was brought in a truck during shabbat.
2. If the people attending the party arrived in a bus on Shabbat.

In case 1, the court said, that that had DIRECT bearing on the food,
and in fact could be found in the hallachot of kashrut itself.

As far as case 2, well THAT has nothing to do with the food itself,
and is of NO buisness to the Rabbi giving the hechsher.

You know what? The Rabbanut did NOT quit en-masse!

As far as question 2, should they quit if they are given an order?
Here, in principle I agree with Warren Burnstein and Shaul Wallach,
that one confronted with a basic ethical problem has certainly the
right to "vote with his feet". However, the Rabbis are subject to
hallacha, so let's see what Reb Moshe said on a similar issue.

In Igrot Moshe, Yoreh Deah Responsa 52 (or 54) Reb Moshe was asked the
following: Apparently, there was this secular sports center operating
in New Mexico (perhaps a J.C.C.?), and the Rabbi wanted to know
if he may give a hechsher, subject to the clubs stipulation that
people who finished a meat meal would be allowed to have ice-cream for
dessert, if they so wished (milk ice-cream), provided, of course, that
the ice cream would be served in seperate dishes?

To this Reb Moshe not only responded in the affirmitive, but stated:
A. The hechsher (he calls it the Piece of paper) does not tell people
that the people running the place are Tzadikim (rightuous), rather
that the FOOD was properly prepared.
M'ISSUREI MA'ACHALOT ASSUROT" (!) ("And there is an added factor, that
by doing this - giving a hechsher - he will be saving many souls from
the prohibition of forbidden foods").

Rav Ovadyah Yoseph has a similar response.

So you see, while the Rabbanim are attempting to save the secular
public's souls from "Idea's", they are, at least according to Reb
Moshe, leaving them with possible Issurei Torah (if these companies
start producing on Shabbat, giving up on hechsherim altogether).

I was merely attempting to present another point of view, within the
parameters of Hallacha.

All the best...

                               Nachum Issur Babkoff

From: <Janice.Gelb@...> (Janice Gelb)
Date: Fri, 25 Jun 93 17:45:39 -0400
Subject: Re: Pepsi and Coca Cola

In mail.jewish Vol. 7 #104 Digest, Shaul Wallach writes:

>       However, this morning the Haredi newspapers, Ha-Modia` and
> Yated Ne'eman, both published a call by leading rabbis to
> strengthen the hands of all those working to eradicate the plague
> of indecent advertising now sweeping through our Holy Land. The
> notice was published with the signatures of Rabbi Schach, Rabbi
> Alter (Gur), Rabbi Auerbach and Rabbi Wosner, among others. In
> particular, kashrut committees are instructed "to distance
> themselves to the best of their ability from giving, even
> indirectly, aid to transgressors." From this language it appears
> that giving even indirect aid to transgressors is improper.

In my opinion, there should be a distinction made between calls for 
a boycott of a product because a person or organization feels that 
the company is acting in a way they don't want to support financially, 
and certification as to whether a product meets kashrut standards. 

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


From: Morris Podolak <morris@...>
Date: Sun, 27 Jun 93 04:40:49 -0400
Subject: Techelet

A number of people have written regarding the use of techelet in
tzitzit.  The following two sources may be of interest:

The first is volume 8 of "Aseh Lecha Rav" by Rabbi Chayyim David Halevi,
the Sephardi Chief Rabbi of Tel Aviv - Yaffo.  The first question is
from a man who put techelet on his tzitzit in accordance with the
suggestion of the Rabbi of Rodzyn.  A number of rabbis who saw him with
the tzitzit told him they were not sure he had done the right thing.
Rabbi Halevi suggests that the reason people may have been unsure about
the permissibility of using this dye is that the RAMBAM in the second
chapter of Hilchot Tzitzit, halacha 4 states "that if it was dyed with
one of the other colors that darken and do not hold fast then it is
pasul (invalid)."  Rabbi Halevi says, however, that this applies only
where real techelet is available.  In this case a substitute is invalid.
If, however, someone is trying to do the mitzvah with real techelet, and
unintentionally uses something else, there can be no objection.  He ends
with "In my humble opinion you are required to leave it (the tzitz with
the techelet) since if the tzitz is real techelet then you are doing the
mitzvah in its proper way, and if it is not real techelet then it is no
worse than plain white, and you will be rewarded by the Holy One blessed
be He for your good intentions."

As an addition to the responsum he addresses a second question: May one
put a tzitz with techelet on in the first place, or is it better to
"shev ve'al ta'aseh" (sit and do nothing).  Rabbi Halevi answers that
indeed his first response concerned the case where the techelet was
already in place.  However, the same reasoning applies here, "whoever
can put techelet on his tzitzit ...  it is proper to do so..."

There is, however, another opinion.  This can be found in Rav
Soloveichik's "Shiurim Lezecher Abba Mari z"l" (p. 228).  On his lecture
on two types of tradition, he mentions the dispute his grandfather,
Rabbi Yosef Dov Soloveichik had with the Rabbi of Rodzyn.  Rabbi Yosef
Dov argued, essentially, that with respect to tradition things work
differently.  Proofs and opinions have no power where tradition is
concerned.  The son does as he saw his father do.  The Rav did not
elaborate, but I imagine that the point was that once the tradition of
how to make techelet has been lost, it cannot be restored through proofs
and opinions.  As a result there is no longer any techelet that is in
accordance with tradition.  Moshe


End of Volume 8 Issue 6