Short & Sweet - Text Message Q&A #317

Children of Rabbenu Ha-Rav Tzvi Yehudah
Q: How is it possible that Rabbenu Ha-Rav Tzvi Yehudah did not have children?
A: We do not know the secrets of the Creator.  Ha-Or Ha-Chaim Ha-Kadosh also did not have children, and it is told that he exerted all of his efforts, which he would have used for raising children, into his commentary on the Torah.  And Rabbi Meir of Lublin also did not have children, but considered his Yeshiva, Chachmei Lublin, and those who learn Daf Yomi to be his two "children".  So too, Rabbenu Ha-Rav Tzvi Yehudah had two children: his Yeshiva, Mercaz Ha-Rav, and Klal Yisrael (the same can also be said of the Rebbe of Lubavitch who also did not have children).

Visiting Rabbi's Grave
Q: There is a Rav who I greatly admire.  Is it worthwhile to visit his grave?
A: It is better to learn his books.

Tissue on the Floor of the Yeshiva
Q: There is sometimes a tissue on the floor of our Beit Midrash.  Should I stop my learning in order to pick it up?
A: Yes, since proper respect of a Beit Midrash is a Mitzvah, and we temporarily stop our learning to perform a Mitzvah.  But you should ask your Rosh Yeshiva.

Rav Kook's Books
Q: I am in 12th grade and want to learn a book of Rav Kook.  Which should I start with?
A: Orot Ha-Teshuvah.  And if you don't understand something, skip it.

Wedding Ring for Men
Q: Is it permissible for a man to wear a wedding ring, or is it forbidden on account of "Lo Yilbash" (the prohibition of men dressing like women) and "Chukot Ha-Goyim" (following non-Jewish customs)?
A: .  There is no issue of "Lo Yilbash", as long it is not a woman's ring.  There is also no issue of "Chukot Ha-Goyim", since there is no such law among the non-Jews regarding wedding rings.  Ha-Rav Moshe Feinstein writes that there is no issue of "Chukot Ha-Goyim since the ring is ornamental and symbolizes that he is married.  He adds that perhaps it is an ugly custom for a G-d-fearing Jews, but it is not forbidden.  Shut Igrot Moshe, Even Ha-Ezer 4:32 #2.  The definition of an "ugly" custom is according to the time and place.  There are Sefardic men who wear a wedding ring, and some Ashkenazim as well (Ha-Rav Nissim Karelitz also permits it in his book "Peat Zekanecha" #102.  So too, Shut Or Le-Tzion 2:23 #11 and Shut Aseh Lecha Rav, Volume 5 p. 386).

Lost Ketubah
Q: We lost our Ketubah.  What should we do?
A: Write a replacement Ketubah called a "Ketubah De-Irketa".  Turn to a Rabbi.

Making Aliyah
Q: When we tell people to make Aliyah because of terror in Europe, they say that there is also terror here.  What should we respond?
A: That this is our Land.

Ascending onto the Temple Mount
Q: Is it permissible to ascend onto the Temple Mount?
A: No.  It is a transgression.  There are signs there that the Chief Rabbinate of Israel forbids it.
Q: But some say that the Chief Rabbinate does not decide for all of Am Yisrael and its decisions are political?
A: Now you have two transgressions.

Talmud or Gemara
Q: What is the true name – Talmud or Gemara?

A: Talmud.  For example, Babylonian Talmud, Jerusalem Talmud, Talmud Torah.  Gemara is an expression forced upon us by the censor.