Shut SMS #143

Ha-Rav answers hundreds of text message questions a day! Here's a sample:
Miscarried Fetus
Q: Does a miscarried fetus have a portion in the World to Come?
A: Yes. All Israel has a portion in the World to Come, aside from one who loses it on account of inappropriate behavior, and the fetus did no wrong.

Praying for a Miracle
Q: My hand was amputated. It is permissible for me to pray for it to return?
A: We do not pray for a miracle. Mishnah at the end of Berachot. But you should daven for an excellent prosthetic limb.

"May you live until 120!"
Q: What is the source for life being limited to 120 years?
A: This is no such limit. Some commentators do explain on the verse: "And the days of his life were one hundred and twenty years" (Bereshit 6:3), that this is the limit on the length of one's life (Chizkuni and Ha-Emek Davar). And many great Rabbis did live to this age (Moshe Rabbenu, Hillel, Rabban Yochanan ben Zakai and Rabbi Akiva), but there is no impediment to living longer. For example, Sarah lived to be 127. May those who live longer increase!

Shabbat Protects Him
Q: It is said: "If someone observes Shabbat, Shabbat will protect him." If so, how can a person be murdered in a terrorist attack on Shabbat?
A: This is a beautiful saying which someone made up, but it is not Torah. It is therefore impossible to raise a difficulty based on it.

Wounding One's Father
Q: I was playing basketball with my father, and the ball hit him in the face and drew blood. The Halachah is that one who wounds his father is deserving of death!!
A: This is nothing. It was not on purpose nor even an accident, rather it happened while you were playing in a normal manner. This is an extremely rare occurrence and unexpected. And he forgives you.

Sleeping on Clothing
Q: Is there a problem of sleeping on clothing?
A: Yes. Under one's head. Horayot 13b.

Taking off Kippah
Q: If there is a strong wind and there is a concern that my Kippah will fall into a puddle and get dirty, can I take it off?
A: Hold it tightly on your head with your hand.

Honoring One's Wife
Q: Why doesn't the Torah contain an explicit Mitzvah to honor one's wife just as there is a Mitzvah to honor one's parents?
A: Because a husband and wife are one person.

"Bli Ayin Ha-Ra" (Without the Evil Eye)
Q: When someone asks me how many children I have, after saying the number, should I add: "Bli Ayin Ha-Ra"?
A: There is no need.

Stealing from Arabs
Q: Is it permissible to steal from Arabs? After all we are in a struggle for survival against them.
Q: Certainly not. It is both theft and a desecration of Hashem's Name. It is the role of Tzahal to wage the struggle for our existence.

Traveling to Poland
Q: Should one travel to Poland out of identification with the Holocaust? I heard that it is forbidden but doesn't one need to have a little humanity?
A: If you identify, give your money to a Holocaust survivor who lives in Israel and does not have money for food and medicine, instead of using it to visit reconstructed trees and stones. One needs to have a little humanity!

Canceling an Order
Q: According to the law, it is permissible to cancel an order for a particular item? Is it also permissible according to Halachah?
A: Only if there is a justifiable reason.

Kol Isha
Q: If one cannot fulfill his obligation to hear the Megillah through a microphone (since it is not his voice, but a reconstruction of it), then why is it forbidden to hear a woman's voice through a microphone?
A: Since it is forbidden to have benefit from her voice.

Covering one's Head
Q: Is covering one's head for a man and woman a Torah obligation or a Rabbinic one?
A: Man – Rabbinic. Woman - Torah.