answers hundreds of text message questions a day! Here's a sample:
Is it true that one should not simply say "The Wall" (Ha-Kotel) but
rather "The Western Wall" (Ha-Kotel Ha-Ma'aravi)?
Yes.Just as it is said about the
ignorant that they call the Holy Ark (Aron Ha-Kodesh) as a "closest"
(Aron).Shabbat 32a (And Maharil Diskin
was extremely particular regarding this issue.To'afot Re'em p. 137.Chicho
Mamtakim Vol. 1, p. 58 #15.Tel Talpiyot
I heard that 3 Orthodox women were appointed as "Rabbot" in
America.Is this permissible?
No.If so, she is not exactly
Orthodox.She is not called a
"Rabbah" but rather "Maharat",
a Hebrew acronym for Manhigah Hilchatit Ruchanit Toranit, a halachic,
spiritual, Torah leader.This is an
initiative of Rabbi Avi Weiss, who has unusual opinions.It is a slippery slope here (And the Agudat Yisrael
of America declared that on account of this action, Rabbi Weiss's Shul is not
Dancing with a Broom
Q: What is the source for the custom of dancing with a broom at
the wedding of one's last child to be married?
There is no source.It is assumed to be
a joke of a Badchan (Wedding entertainer): Sweeping away one's last child.Approximately 10 years ago, when the Gerrer
Rebbe married off his youngest son, he searched for a source for this custom and could not find one. He thus clarified that no
great Rabbi did this.
Birkat Cohanim outside of Israel
Q: Is it known who is "One of the Sages of our time"
mentioned by the Mishnah Berurah in Sha'ar Ha-Tziyun (Orach Chaim 128 #131*)
who brings sources that Birkat Cohanim is also a Torah Mitzvah outside of Eretz
A: It is the Aderet, who wrote in one of his books that he
brought these proofs and others to the Chafetz Chaim when they met in
Warsaw.I heard this from Ha-Rav Chaim
Dollar from the Lubavitcher Rebbe
Q: Is a dollar from the Lubavichter Rebbe Muktzeh on Shabbat?
A: No.Since a person
does not use it as money but rather as a Segulah (Madrich Le-Dinei Muktzeh, p.
Speaking Lashon Ha-Rav about Oneself
Q: Is it forbidden to speak Lashon
Ha-Ra about oneself?
No.There is a story that the Chafetz
Chaim was once traveling anonymously and said something which lacked respect
for the Chafetz Chaim, and the listener slapped him.But this is a unique story.It is, however, forbidden to publicize transgressions
between oneself and Hashem, since it is brazen.Rambam, Hilchot Teshuvah (2:5).
What is the source that it is forbidden to send a text message on Shabbat?
Ask a child in first grade and he will tell you that using electricity on
Shabbat is forbidden.
and Conservative Rabbi
Is it permissible to call a Reform or Conservative Rabbi: "Rav"?
Certainly not.This is shaming the title
of "Rav" which belongs to a Torah scholar (Ha-Rav Chaim Jachter wrote
that Mrs. Atara Twersky told him that her father, Ha-Rav Yosef Soloveitchik,
would correspond with a Conservative Rabbi.She saw that he wrote in English and not Hebrew, and asked about
it.Rav Solovietchik responded that
since he writes in English, he can use the title "Rabbi" for the sake
of peace but in Hebrew he would be forced to use the title "Ha-Rav"
which he did not want to do.Beit
Yitzchak #40 5768 p. 242.And similarly,
in Shut Igrot Moshe, Ha-Rav Moshe Feinstein always uses the term
"Rabbi" for a Reform or Conservative Rabbi and "Ha-Rav" for
an Orthodox Rabbi).
a Book which Falls
What is the source for giving a kiss to a Sefer which falls on the ground?
There is not obligation but this is the custom out of love.Aruch Ha-Shulchan, Yoreh Deah 282:11.
the blessing of Shehechiyanu on both nights of Rosh Hashanah, even if one does
not have a new piece of clothing or a new fruit (which he did not yet eat this
season) before him. It is preferable, however, that there be a new piece of
clothing or a new fruit (Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 600:2).
Question: Is it permissible to attach the candles in the candlesticks on Rosh
the candles to the candlesticks for the second night is forbidden on account of
[the prohibition of] "leveling" (Shemirat Shabbat Ke-Hilchata p. 76
#18), and this prohibition is no less important than the actual commandment of
lighting the candles. One should therefore prepare two additional candlesticks
before Rosh Hashanah or stick them into the candlesticks without attaching them
on the holiday.
second day of Rosh Hashanah, one may not prepare the candlesticks before the
stars come out (definite nightfall), since we may not prepare on the first day
of Rosh Hashanah for the second day. But it is permissible to light the candles
before sunset, since one benefits from their light on the first day itself.
Addition to the revised edition
saw in the book "Am Ke-Lavi" (the original name of this volume of She’eilat
Shlomo) that it is permissible to light on the first day of Rosh Hashanah
before sunset (for the second day) because it is not considered preparation for
the next day, since we benefit from the lights on the first day as well. What
is the source for this law, since it does not follow the opinion of the Mateh
Be’er Heitev writes: "The Levush (503:4) wrote: We customarily light the candles
when it gets dark even before [reciting the prayer] "Barechu." And
the Or Zarua wrote that there are women who recite the blessing before they go
to Shul (for Maariv of the second day). And it is also written in the Shelah
that it is a greater Mitzvah to do this than to light upon returning to their
house since they would return to a dark house. And in Shul it is customary to
light even when it is still day time since in a Shul it is always a Mitzvah to
light candles, even in the day." And this is the ruling in the Shulchan Aruch
(Orach Chaim 514:5): "It is forbidden to light an idle light which one
does not need, but [a light] of a Shul is not considered idle. It is
permissible to light one even on the second day after Minchah and this is not considered
preparing for a weekday, since in lighting it there is a Mitzvah for that time."
And the Mishnah Berurah (#33) wrote: "There is a Mitzvah...that is to say,
even if one does not need the light while it is still day, even so there is a Mitzvah
to light it because of the honor of the Shul, and if it is already close to
dark it is even permissible in one’s house since he needs it at that time."
2. Annulment of Vows
customary to release ones vows on Erev Rosh Hashanah or Erev Yom Kippur, but it
is also possible to do this during the entire Ten Days of Repentance. One who
is unable to do this should be released before three individuals when the
opportunity arises (Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 128:10).
3. Eating before the Shofar Blasts
our custom of eating before the Shofar blasts in consonance with Jewish Law?
1) In general, when it is incumbent upon a Jew to fulfill a Mitzvah he should
first fulfill the Mitzvah and then eat afterwards. Nevertheless the basic law
is that only an actual meal is forbidden before the fulfillment of a Mitzvah,
and a small snack is permissible. But in the generations of the Achronim, they
were very strict regarding eating a snack, and they only permitted it for
someone who was extremely feeble (See Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 128:9. Sha’arei
Teshuvah 584 #3).
2) It is
now customary in all places, even amongst the pious, to permit eating a small
amount. They support this on the basis of the law that a small snack is
permissible. There is therefore no basis to prohibit it. See the comprehensive
article of Rabbi Y. Segal in Noam vol. 14, which states that someone who has
difficulty with not eating, and whose Davening continues until after midday – is
permitted to eat something small.
is certainly preferable not to eat, in particular on the first day of Rosh
Hashanah, since these Shofar blasts are a Torah Mitzvah, but for one who has difficulty
waiting until the end, and whose ability to pray with proper concentration will
be disturbed, it is permissible to eat something light. And one should
obviously do so with awe and fear, and not for an inappropriate reason (In Shut
Bnei Banim #14, Rav Yehudah Herzl Henkin disagrees with the above, but one can counter
Question: Is one required to recite another blessing over a Talit after the
break between Shacharit and Musaf?
Yes, since this is a significant interruption and the person’s mind will be
distracted from the Mitzvah of Talit (Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 8, Mishnah
[Be-Ahavah U-Be-Emunah – Ki Tavo
5773 – translated by R. Blumberg]
Temima is the person who had the greatest influence on me in my lifetime.
I say this
as an understatement, for the truth is that she has given me my whole life.And all of this without her knowing it. She
was unaware of her influence, living her life in quiet and tranquility. Yet I
made her my Rebbetzin, even though we are the same age and our friendship
lasted from age fourteen until her passing away at the age of twenty-seven from
a girl she was weak and sick, yet she never emitted a single complaint, sigh or
expression of envy. Rather, she accepted her suffering lovingly and said,
“Everyone’s lot is like this. My suffering also atones, purifies and purges
me.” She said such things innocently. And that was her name: Temima – Innocent.
Apparently, when her parents chose that name for her, it injected her with a
spark of divine intuition.
At first I
didn’t notice her, because she was not a dazzling student. She was even less than
average. She had a lot of trouble understanding, as well as remembering, and I was
amongst the good students, so what did I actually have in common with her?
day, we happened to sit together on the bus on a class trip. We talked a bit, and
that evening I returned home with a new realization: This girl was no
know-it-all, but she was worth more than I. Compared to her, I was a wretched
When I say
that we chatted a bit, I do not mean that she was a chatterbox – she spoke simply and to the point. I was the
chatterbox, whether or my words were relevant or pointless.
event, that day I decided that she would be my Rebbetzin, and that I would try
to learn from her. Obviously, I never informed her of this, because she would
have responded with her bashful smile and said, “What nonsense!”
she responded when people thanked her for anything: “Why are they thanking me?”
For her part, she would perform kind deeds for people day and night, boundless
kindness. She did it for the poor, the wretched, the depressed, employing infinite
patience, and all for the sake of heaven, with that simplicity and naturalness.
She would help and help everyone until her strength ran out, despite her
following her path, and since then, my life has been full of light, a sweet
light, a soft light, a gentle light, a pure light. I took pleasure in
performing kindnesses without any calculation.
natural, simple love of her fellow man she exuded! She never complained and never
criticized anyone. Yet regarding herself she fastidiously took care that she should
be without sin.
I have a
hard time defining her personality. She wasn’t the female do-gooder type, but a
simple girl who was just very careful to do no wrong. She was particularly
careful about two things: 1) not to do anything to disturb others, and 2) to
repent constantly regarding the slightest speck of arrogance. She made a
recognizable, constant effort to remain innocent, even to the point of
occasional naivety, and to remain humble.
always modest and unassuming. She never sought honor or position. She never
sought to be “someone” or “something”. Quite the contrary, she took pleasure in
remaining a “nothing”.
certainly wasn’t looking to make an impression with her outer appearance. She never
invested in beauty care, she wore modest, simple clothing, although always clean
and neat, wearing layers of clothing from head to toe, and she even looked for
a head kerchief worn by girls. She never studied the laws of modesty, but
modesty was something natural to her.
though G-d did not bless her with health or with intellectual skills, she had
not a drop of envy. Quite the contrary, she was very happy. How? Through the
kindness she performed, relentlessly and unceasingly for others. Her kindness
something else that brought her joy: prayer. When she recited her long prayers,
morning, afternoon and evening, at those times when she was not busy with her
kind deeds, one could see in her eyes that she was basking in supreme pleasure,
indeed, that she was in heaven. At those moments, she looked like an angel. A
little, human angel, but an angel all the same. She was a gentle angel. From
her I learned that it is possible for a simple person to be an angel.
but one longing – to serve G-d. She filled her life in every way.
Question: What is the law
concerning the hamburger that has been successfully created in a
laboratory?While the lab-grown burger
is extremely expensive now, they say that eventually its price will become less
than regular meat, and so – in the future – this may really be an issue.Is it Treif because it was taken from a cow
that hasn’t been slaughtered? Is it considered a limb taken from a living
animal? Is it Fleischig? Is it forbidden because of Maarit Ayin?
1. We are not discussing cloning, as in the creation of Dolly the
Sheep.Cloning is an artificial process
identical to the natural process of taking a cell from one animal and
reproducing it.Scientists have considered
cloning human beings and this is certainly forbidden for various reasons: A.
Horrible things can occur from the abuse of it.B. Hashem wants a person to have two
parents, a father and mother, and not one parent.C. Hashem allows us to utilize medicine in
order to heal, and not for other purposes (Baba Kamma 85a.Ramban, Torat Ha-Adam, Sha'ar
Ha-Sakanah).In any event, such a
creation would be a human being in every way.
Our case, however, is not a natural process of taking a cell and reproducing
it, rather the meat is made by taking stem cells from
a cow and growing them into strips of muscle which are then combined to make a
burger.Although the end product is
meat, it is created in an unnatural manner.
This is similar to what is brought in the Gemara
in Sanhedrin (59b) that Adam Ha-Rishon was prohibited from eating meat, but it
is told that angels roasted meat for him.The Gemara explains that meat which comes from the heavens was not
considered meat, i.e. it is meat created in an unnatural manner.
is also related there that Rabbi Shimon ben Chalafta was once walking and
encountered lions.He cried out to
young lions roar after prey and seek their food from G-d" (Tehillim
104:21), and two pieces of meat came down from heaven.He gave one piece to the lions and he brought
one to the Beit Midrash, and asked if it was Kosher or Treif.They answered him: An impure thing does not
descend from heaven, i.e. since this was "miracle meat" – created in
an unnatural way - it is not considered Treif (see also Menachot 69b).
3.This "meat" undergoes many changes
to the point that its entire identity is different. This is the same as Gelatin
from non-Kosher animals. The bones undergo so many changes that the
produt is considered an entirely new creation. While some authorities are
strict about this issue, the basic Halachah is that Gelatin is Kosher (See Shut
Yabia Omer 8:11).
The stem cells cannot be seen by the human eye. The Chochmat Adam (Klal
38 Binat Adam #34) explains that Halachah is only based on what we can see with
the human eye and not on that we can see with a microscope.There are many such examples in the Halachah:
One can breathe, even though there are all sorts of creatures in the air, because
these creatures cannot be seen (Aruch Ha-Shulchan Yoreh Deah 84:36); fish whose
scales can only be seen by a microscope are not Kosher (Tiferet Yisrael, Avodah
Zarah 2:6); worms only seen by a microscope are not considered as existent
(Shut Igrot Moshe Yoreh Deah 2:146); and if two letters are touching in a Sefer
Torah but their point of contact can only be seen by a microscope, the Sefer
Torah is Kosher (Moadim U-Zmanim 2:124).See my commentary on Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 24:3.
In sum: It seems that a lab-grown burger is not Treif, not considered a limb
taken from a living animal and is Parve (although it is not vegetarian) based
on three reasons: A. It is not created in the regular process as the creation
of meat.B.It has undergone many changes to the point
that its entire identity is different.C.The stem cells from which it
is taken cannot be seen by the human eye.
since this is a new creation, the great Torah scholars must decide on the
6.And regarding eating such a burger with
dairy, there is no problem of Maarit Ayin, since we do not add to the list of
things forbidden in the Gemara on account of Maarit Ayin, otherwise there would
be no end to such decrees (Pri Chadash, Yoreh Deah 87:7).This is similar to the permission to use
margarine, non-dairy creamer and Parve ice cream (Shut Yechaveh Daat
[Be-Ahavah U-Be-Emunah – Ki
Tzetzei 5773 – translated by R. Blumberg]
Question: Should one
include the modern sky-blue “Techelet” strings, created with dye from the murex
snail, in one's Tzitzit?
Answer: For more
than a thousand years we have not had Techelet, so it is clear that such a halachic
innovation must be effected by the great Torah luminaries of the generation.
Yet we see with our own eyes that almost all the great Rabbis of our generation
do not place Techelet in their Tzitzit. Thus the Halachah has been decided, and
if someone conducts himself publicly counter to their practice, that
constitutes arrogance, in other words, religious arrogance as though he is smarter
and more righteous than they. Thus, I shall not clarify whether to add Techelet
or not, but rather why the great Torah luminaries reject it.
lengthy deliberations, one can discern three main avenues of rejection:
1. The precedent
of a thousand years.2. Unwillingness to
rely on proofs to re-institute a tradition.3.The weakness of the proofs
that have been offered.
the Radziner Rebbe first identified a particular animal, the cuttlefish, as the
source of Techelet, he quoted the halachic response of the Ha-Gaon Rav Yosef
Dov Soloveitchik of Brisk, the “Beit Ha-Levi”, who had written that if the
murex snail had been known, and the means of production of its dye had been
known the entire time that the Jewish People had ceased to use Techelet, yet
they still had not added it to their Tzitzit, then it is as though this
constitutes a tradition that this was not the same snail that our sages spoke
if we bring as many proofs as the sands of the sea, it will not help against
the practical conduct of the Jewish People.
Avraham Shapira quoted the Beit Ha-Levi in a letter of his that was
in Rav Harari's “Laws of the Seder Night” (Letter #1), and he added there that
the very fact that the murex snail was known but was not used to make Techelet
proves that it is not the Techelet of the Torah. It could not possibly be that
the proper snail existed and Jews would fail to do all they could to search for
it and investigate it so as not to nullify the Mitzvah of Techelet from the
Torah. Only if practically speaking no Techelet dye existed would there be cause
to clarify and to look for the right one. He concluded by saying that his basis
was our Sages' words, “Israel, if they are not prophets, still descended from
prophets, and it cannot be that the holiness of the Torah would fail to
enlighten them to keep the Mitzvah as commanded.
Yosef Shalom Elyashiv likewise quoted the Beit Ha-Levi regarding the contemporary
use of the murex snail, and he further noted that the Radziner Rebbe's
identification did not achieve acceptance, nor did that of Ha-Gaon Ha-Rav
Yitzchak Isaac Ha-Levi Herzog. How then do we know, he concluded, that the
present identification will not be rejected, as were its predecessors? (Kovetz
Ha-Rav Yosef Dov Soloveitchik quoted the words of his great-grandfather, the Beit
Ha-Levi, in a slightly different manner:
tradition about identifying Techelet ended, since for many generations we have not
know what the 'Chilazon' [snail] of our sages refers to, then even if we
succeeded in restoring this information through technical, scientific proofs
and clear phenomena, that information still could not enter our tradition, and
it is impossible for us to pass legal rulings based on this information without
a halachic tradition.” (Nefesh Ha-Rav, pp. 52-53)
words, it is impossible to reconstitute a lost tradition regarding a Mitzvah
object or a sin object, via proofs, but only via a continuing tradition of
those who saw it with their own eyes.
little like those matters whose rulings are based on expert testimony, as with torts,
as opposed to those rulings that need eyewitness, as with capital crimes or the
validity of a marriage.
wording of Beit Ha-Levi quoted above is more strict than that of the Radziner
latter, there is no rejection in principle of various proofs. All the same they
are rejected due to the weight of the years in which it was not used, that
constituting a "negative tradition". Had the murex snail disappeared
for a thousand years, there would be room for proofs.
Yosef Dov Soloveitchik holds that even then, if murex had disappeared, it would
still be impossible to rely on proofs, because a tradition is required.
proofs about the new identification are far from final. In the Mishnah and
amongst our medieval Sages we find seven identifying markers for what
constitutes the snail associated with Techelet.
a. It has
a shell (Shabbat 75a)
b. The dye
has to be produced from a living snail (ibid.)
emerges from the sea once in seventy years, in other words, rarely (Menachot
similar to a fish (ibid).
Mediterranean House Geckos bite it and it dies (Sifri, Zot HaBeracha 13).
color is as black as ink (Rambam, Hilchot Tzitzit 2:2).
If we now
investigate the recently identified murex snail we find the following:
a. It has
b. With a
lot of snails, you do have to produce the dye immediately. Yet precisely with murex
you can dry it and then produce the dye much later.
does not come out of the sea. Rather, it remains attached to the sea floor.
it is not rare, but is found in all the Mediterranean sea ports by the ton, for
use as food.
d. It does
not look like a fish.
shell is hard and house geckos cannot crack it. A hammer is required for that.
f. The dye
that emerges from it is transparent (the sun just blackens it).
snail is not black but white.
support identifying it with Techelet try to answer all of these questions, but
the identification cannot be called certain.
As a rule,
we must realize that all scientific hypotheses have the stamp of doubt on them.
New facts are liable to be discovered that will change the hypothesis, and any
man of science who frames a theory first states cautiously, “according to the
present state of our knowledge...”
therefore conclude by quoting Ha-Gaon Rabbi Yehoshua of Kutna in his response
to the Radziner Rebbe:
rejected for a hundred years, and the wording in Arizal agrees with this, that
there is no Techelet except
when the Temple is standing. It has been concealed by Heaven.”
answers hundreds of text message questions a day! Here's a sample:
Message Responsa by the Rishonim
Did the Rishonim also answer questions like text message responsa?
Yes.For example, the Rambam was asked
if one owes money to a widow, will the Shemittah year cancel it out or not?He answered: "It will be cancelled"
(Teshuvot Ha-Rambam #237).
If an Arab hits me, can I hit him back?
which Drips from Air Conditioner
Is the water which drips from an air conditioner on Shabbat considered Muktzeh?
Yes.On account of Nolad (an item
created on Shabbat), since it is created from the moisture in the air.See Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 310 Mishnah
Berurah #32.Unlike what I wrote in my
book Shut She'eilat Shlomo 4:103.
How should I respond to the words of a Rabbi who refers to other Jews as
I – the humble one – am not involved with this issue, and I recommend for you
not to be involved with it either.
on to the Temple Mount
Is there a Mitzvah to ascend on to the Temple Mount?
Yes.In order to bring a sacrifice.See Rambam at the beginning of Hilchot
Chagigah.And there is also a
prohibition of not appearing before Hashem (on the Temple Mount)
empty-handed.Rambam ibid. (See similarly
the booklet "Divrei Shi"ach" of teachings between Ha-Rav Yosef
Shalom Elyashiv and Ha-Rav Chaim Kanievski, p. 26.And I have heard that some Gedolei Yisrael
explains that one should ascend to fulfill the Mitzvah of Mora Mikdash –
showing awe to the Temple, but this is a big Chiddush).
If I took a number and am waiting on line but decide not to wait after all, is
it permissible for me to give the number to another person?
No.It is forbidden to help one person
on the backs of others.
Phone in Shul
A cell phone rang in Shul, everyone looked at me thinking that it was mine and
I pointed at the person whose phone was actually ringing.Was this Lashon Ha-Ra?
One should signal: It is not me.
in the Name of a Rabbi
I heard in the name of Rabbi… that one should…
If you did not hear it with your own ears, do not rely on it.Check and please let me know.
I asked the Rabbi and he said that he said nothing like this, rather someone
asked him for a blessing and he blessed him.
The answer therefore hinged on the question (I saw a similar incident in the
booklet "Divrei Shi"ach" of teaching between Ha-Rav Yosef Shalom
Elyashiv and Ha-Rav Chaim Kanievski, p. 26).
in the Second Temple Period
How did women immerse in the Second Temple Period, if they did not build Mikvehs?
Sea, river, spring, well.Not only women
but also men.And the forty years in the
desert as well, they immersed in Miriam's well, springs and different puddles
(And Ha-Rav Chaim Kanievski said that in the desert they immersed Miriam's
well.Derech Shichah Volume 1, p. 318).
Does a Netilat Yadayim cup made from plastic require immersion in a Mikveh?
No.1. It was made by Jews.2. Plastic does not require immersion.3. It is not a utensil for eating.
answers hundreds of text message questions a day! Here's a sample:
Q: If I have to go to a class and the female lecturer is dressed
immodesty, what should I do?
A: Stick your head in a book or notebook.By the way, one should also not stare at a
modestly dressed female lecturer (Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 152:8-9).
Being Stricter than Your Rabbi
Q: Is it permissible to follow a Chumra which one's Rabbi does
A: Only in private, on account of "Yehura" – religious
arrogance.See Baba Kamma 81a (The
author of the Kochav Mi-Yaakov once asked the Admor of Hosiatin why he does not
prepare all of his water before Pesach to avoid any potential problems of
Chametz?He said that he learned this
from what the author of the Degel Machaneh Ephraim said: that since the Baal
Shem Tov was lenient, he does not act strictly.He then asked: What does one lose by being strict,
since it is proper to add another stricture on Pesach?He replied that this is incorrect based on
the Gemara in Beitza 36a that Abaye was punished for acting stricter than his
Rabbi, Rabbah.However, in the biography
of the Arugat Ha-Bosen, it is told that he was strict to learn with his hat on
even on extremely hot days.He was
asked: Why cause yourself distress?Didn't the Ketav Sofer – your teacher – learn without his hat?He responded: Is it forbidden to be stricter
than one's Rabbis?!Commentary on Pirkei
Avot 'Az Yomru' of Ha-Rav Yitzchak Aharon Goldberger, Dayan and Rosh Yeshiva
for Pupa Chasidim, pp. 74.And see Shut
She'eilat Shlomo Vol. 4, p. 285 regarding one who is strict in a place where it
was decided to be lenient).
Q: I have begun growing long Pe'ot but my wife says she is
embarrassed, since it is not so acceptable in our area.What should I do?
A: Since it is not an obligation, you should consider Shalom
Washing Dishes on Shabbat
Q: It is extremely difficult for me to see dirty dishes in the
sink.Can I wash them on Shabbat even
though we do not need them?
A: No.It is preparing on
Shabbat for a weekday.You should
therefore put them in a closed bag on the side.
Q: Is there an obligation to have Sheva Berachot all 7 days?
A: No.Whatever is most
comfortable for the groom and bride.After all, it is to bring them joy and not to burden them (Re'im Ahuvim
pp. 165-169.And Ha-Rav Moshe Feinstein
related that when he got married they only had Sheva Berachot on Shabbat, and
not on all 7 days as is customary today.Reshumei Aharon Volume 1, p. 18.And Ha-Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach once lamented this practice and quoted
what the Chatam Sofer wrote in his responsa Even Ha-Ezer #122: "That
someone once had Sheva Berachot on Shabbat and the entire community mocked
him", and that the Aruch Ha-Shulchan wrote in Hilchot Sukkah #640 that we
do not have the custom to have Sheva Berachot every day.Meged Givot Olam Volume 2, p. 72).
Woman Affixing up a Mezuzah
Q: Is it permissible for a woman to affix a Mezuzah?
A: Yes, since she is also obligated to have a Mezuzah.Shut Daat Cohain #169.Shut Yabia Omer Volume 3 Yoreh Deah #18.
Referendum on Yehudah and Shomron
Q: Should there be a referendum on the fate of Yehudah and
A: This Land is not our personal property - it belongs to the
eternal Nation of Israel for all generations, those who already lived and those
who have yet to be born.The Nation has
the authority to make decisions within the framework of Halachah, but does not
have the authority to decide regarding that which the Master of the Universe
has already decided for eternity, such as Shabbat and the loyalty between a
husband and wife (Le-Hilchot Tzibur, p. 53, 99, 111, 139).
Q: We have a driver at work who gets drunk.If I report him, he will get fired.On the other hand, it is dangerous.
A: You should certainly report it.He is warned from the outset regarding it.Baba Batra 21.
To Enrich the spiritual life of the English-speaking World through the Torah of Ha-Rav Shlomo Aviner, Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshivat Ateret Yerushalayim in the heart of the Old City of Jerusalem. By offering English translations of Rav Aviner’s written and oral Torah, this division of the yeshiva aims to expose English speakers to a powerful, sensitive and poetic voice unparalleled in our time. His unfailing optimism, his tolerance and love all Jews, his guidance for harmony within the Jewish family and his dedication to Eretz Yisrael, the State of Israel and Tzahal will inspire and enrich the lives of all who may now have access to his words.