Revach L'Neshama http://revach.net/ RSS feed for - Section: HALACHA Category:TSHUVOS Copyright 2007, Revach L'Neshama en-US Revach L'Neshama Logo 144 31 http://revach.net/img/small_header.jpg http://revach.net/ info@revach.net Fri, 24 Oct 2014 03:00:00 -0700 240 Rav Vosner - Tefilas HaDerech Alongside Cities http://revach.net/article.php?id=5303 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5303

The Halacha states (OC 110) that Tefilas HaDerech is only said after a traveler leaves his city to embark on a journey of at least one Parsah. It can be said the entire journey until he arrives within a Parsa of his destination. What happens if alongside the highway that he travels, there is always a city within one Parsa? Is he exempt from Tefilas HaDerech because within a Parsa of a city there is no danger?

The Biur Halacha is Misupak and does not resolve this question. However Rav Vosner (Shevet HaLevi 10:21) says that one should say Tefilas HaDerech in this case. He explains that before leaving your city you are exempt because your journey has not yet begun. Within a Parsa of your destination it is already too late because you've already arrived. The entire road in between, is the modern day danger that is the subject of our Tefilah. The fact that the road is within the boundaries of another city does not lessen the danger as your car whizzes right by it, and therefore does not exempt you.


Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Mon, 08 Sep 2014 03:00:00 -0700
Rav Moshe Shternbuch - Driving a Niftar http://revach.net/article.php?id=5300 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5300

When they first started placing the Niftar in wagons to take them to the Bais HaKvaros, the gedolim raised a ruckus, since Kavod HaMeis dictates that a Niftar should be carried, just like the Aron Kodesh was carried and not driven in a wagon. Rav Moshe Shternbuch (2:617) says that automobiles are only used when needed to traverse longer distances to the cemetery.

At the very least, says Rav Shternbuch, the driver of the automobile should be a Shomer Torah U'Mitzvos and not a goy or michalel shabbos. He brings proof from Yaakov Avinu who gave clear directions as to who could carry his Mittah.

Although when transporting a Sefer Torah we are not particular about having a Jewish driver, that is because the Sefer Torah must be held by someone, making the driver irrelevant as the one carrying it is giving it the honor it deserves. Whereas a mittah is not carried in the automobile by those accompanying it, but rather lying in it, rendering the driver the one doing the actual transport.

Although having a goy drive is not an issur, Rav Shtenbuvh says it is worthwhile to try to arrange for a Shomer Torah to drive in order to give honor to the Niftar.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Thu, 04 Sep 2014 03:00:00 -0700
Rav Ephraim Greenblatt Zt"l: Giving Food to a Non-Religious Guest http://revach.net/article.php?id=5294 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5294

The Halacha states that one may not give food to a person who won't make a Bracha. On what grounds do we do so today? Rav Ephraim Greenblatt in Rivevos Ephraim (8:74) brings from Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach that if by refusing to give him food he will hate religious Jews then it is better not to refuse him food. He also brings from the V'Zos HaBracha that a technical way out of this dilemma is to be Mafkir the food before letting him have it, thereby avoiding the prohibition, since it is no longer your food.

All this notwithstanding Rav Greenblatt says it is best to ask him nicely if he would like to make a Bracha, or at least listen to your Bracha and answer Amein.

He also relates the following moving story. He was once in a taxi from Tel Aviv to Yerushalayim and the taxi driver pulled out a bottle of coke and gave him a cup offering him a drink. Rav Greenblatt asked the driver to pull over as he took out a Yarmulka from his pocket and told him he would drink only if the driver also makes a bracha and drinks. Together they made the bracha. The taxi drivers eyes filled with tears and thanked the Rav warmly telling him it was the first time in forty years that he made a bracha. Rav Greenblatt encouraged him to continue.

From here, says Rav Greenblatt, we see that we can influence others and therefore although technically there are ways around this sticky issue, it always pays to gently try.

And who knows better than Rav Ephraim Greenblatt zt"l who served as Rov of Memphis, Tennessee for half a century and gently brought many hearts closer to Hashem. Yehi Zichro Boruch.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Wed, 08 Jan 2014 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Moshe Feinstein - Counting Sefira & Eating Before a Late Maariv http://revach.net/article.php?id=5282 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5282 The Mishna Brura (489:2) paskens that on the first night of Sefiras HaOmer one should count as soon as possible in order that the Sefira should be temimos, complete. The Chayei Adam (131) and many other poskim hold that this applies to every night of Sefira and one should try to daven Maariv as close to the Zman as possible.

According to this it would seem that if a person always davens by a late Minyan for Maariv he should count sefira by the Zman and daven Maariv later. However, the poskim agree with the Chok Yaakov that one should daven Maariv before counting sefira, since Maariv is Tadir and therefore the more common mitzva comes first.

What happens, asks Rav Moshe Feinstein (Igros Moshe OC 4:98), if a person wants to eat and does not want to wait until after Maariv, may he then count before Maariv? Rav Moshe says that he should not count before Maariv, yet he may eat. The reason is that although one may not eat before Shema, he may eat before Maariv if he davens at a Minyan Kavua. Therefore, says Rav Moshe, the heter to eat before Shema extends to Sefira as well, since Sefira is less strict than Shema.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Wed, 03 Apr 2013 03:00:00 -0700
Cutting Nails on Erev Shabbos Chol HaMo'ed http://revach.net/article.php?id=5281 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5281 While all agree that taking a haircut or shaving is forbidden on Chol HaMo'ed, cutting nails is a machlokes between the Michaber (OC 532:1) who holds that it is permissible and the Rema who paskens that it is Assur.  Sfardim are lenient like the Michaber while Ashkenazin are Machmir in accordance with the Rema.

However since cutting nails is not assur according to everyone, the Mishna Brura paskens like the Mogen Avrohom that if one cut his nails before Yom Tov, he may cut them again on Chol HaMo'ed if necessary. This is unlike shaving which is Assur on Chol HaMo'ed even if one shaved on Erev Yom Tov.

The Be'er Heitev brings from the Nachlas Shiva that if one is Makpid to cut his nails every Erev Shabbos he may do so on Erev Shabbos Chol HaMo'ed even if he did not cut them Erev Yom Tov. The Mishna Brura does not mention this leniency. Furthermore the Shaarei Tshuva (468:1) brings the Shvus Yaakov who Assurs in this case. Yet the Shmiras Shabbos K'Hilchaso (66:33) paskens like the Be'er Heitev and

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions. the Kaf HaChaim who permit it.

 

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Fri, 29 Mar 2013 03:00:00 -0700
When There Are No Sons, Can a Daughter Say Kaddish For Her Father? http://revach.net/article.php?id=5274 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5274 The Shvus Yaakov (2:93) says that when a person dies and has no sons, his daughters can say Kaddish for him. However this cannot be done in Shul. Rather he says, a Minyan should be made in the house and only there may she say Kaddish. In Prague there was a minhag that someone who died and only left daughters, the girls who were ages six or seven would say Kaddish in a side room in the afternoon where old men gathered to say Tehilim together. The Gesher HaChaim also brings that girls under Bas Mitzva may say Kaddish.

However this is not accepted practice today. The Chavas Yair (222) was from the early dissenters, and although acknowledging that a daughters Kaddish brings pleasure to the Neshama, it would lead to other customs and cause more bad than good.

The Mateh Efraim (Kaddish Yasom 4) says that even the father left in his Tzavaah that his daughters should say Kaddish, we must not listen to him, and she should not say Kaddish, not in Shul and not in her home. To accede to her father's wishes she should go to Shul and answer Amen to Kaddish with Kavana, and in that way she will fulfill her father's request.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Mon, 14 Jan 2013 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Moshe Shternbuch: Birchas HaMazon with Zimun for Three Woman http://revach.net/article.php?id=5271 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5271 The gemara (Brachos 45b) says that women and men cannot be counted together to form a Mizuman for Birchas HaMazon. The opinion of the Vilna Gaon is that three women eating together without any men present have an obligation to Bench BiMizuman. Furthermore says the Vilna Gaon in places where it is not customary for women to form a Mizuman, women should make sure not to eat in groups of three because that would obligate them to make a Mizuman.

Rav Moshe Shternbuch (end of 4:51) asks if women want to make a Mizuman together even though it is not customary, is it permissible. He answers that it is not advisable for a number of reasons. First he says, it comes off as arrogant. Additionally he says that there is an Issur of Lo Sisgodadu for a public to act not in accordance with the customs of the city. Since three people is called a public and women are not Noheg today to make a Mizuman there is a question of Lo Sisgodadu.

Lastly he says Zimun is considered a Bracha even though there is no Shem and Malchus in it. This being the case according to Rebbi Akiva Eiger it would be considered a Bracha Livatala according to the opinions that three women do not form a Zimun. Therefore advise Rav Shternbuch, it is better to be rewarded for abstaining and honoring the Minhag of Klal Yisroel, rather than be Machmir in accordance with an opinion of the Vilna Gaon that was never accepted.


Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Mon, 24 Dec 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Moshe Shternbuch: Standing Up Out Of Respect During Krias Shema http://revach.net/article.php?id=5252 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5252 The Mishna in Brachos details when one is permitted to interrupt his own reading of Krias Shema to say hello or answer to someone out of respect or out of fear. Nevertheless the Mishna Brura (66:2) brings from the Mogen Avrohom that nowadays we do not interrupt Shema to talk to anyone under normal circumstances. What about standing out of respect for a Rebbi or parent? Can we and should we stand up during Krias Shema or is that also no longer permitted?

Rav Moshe Shternbuch (Tshuvos V'Hanhagos 4:22) weighs a number of reasons not to stand and dismisses them. He says that the Oseik BaMitzva Patur Min HaMitzva does not excuse you in this case since not standing up is an issur since it is embarrassing to a Talmid Chochom or parent to sit while they walk by. Furthermore Oseik BaMitzva Patur Min HaMitzva only exempts you when the second mitzva will disturb you from the first, which is not the case here when all you must do is stand up for a moment.

Rav Shternbuch, after discussing other reasons to not stand, concludes that the only excuse not to stand for a talmid chochom is if it will really disturb your concentration during Shema, which most of us cannot claim today. Therefore one should, if he can, grab this great mitzva of standing for a talmid chochom or parent and get back to Shema. Moreover he says the mitzva should be done properly and one should stand up to his complete height rather than just slightly raise himself.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Wed, 17 Oct 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Are You Allowed to Take a Shower the Night Before a Taanis? http://revach.net/article.php?id=5239 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5239

There is a basic difference between Tisha B'Av and the other Taanios Tzibur. The Rishonim say based on the gemara (Rosh HaShanah 18b) that fast days other than Tisha B'Av were only meant to be kept during the time that there were terrible decrees on Klal Yisroel. During those times the other fasts had the same halachos and stringencies as Tisha B'Av, including starting at night and being forbidden from all the inuyim.

During peaceful times the other fasts are optional. However today it is not optional since Klal Yisroel as a whole has already taken upon themselves to fast the other fasts as well. These fasts however were only accepted in a more lenient way, forbidding only eating and drinking and only starting in the morning. The Mogen Avrohom says (550:3 and Machatzis HaShekel) the reason they were lenient was because it was too hard for the tzibbur. Therefore he says a Baal Nefesh should take on all the inuyim.

The Shaar HaTziyon brings down that today it is also possible to say that we are living in times of decrees on Klal Yisroel, which would require us Min HaDin to keep each fast the same way as Tisha B'Av and even starting it the night before (Shela HaKaddosh see also Mishna Brura 568:9). Therefore says the Piskei Tshuvos (550 fn. 18) a Baal Nefesh should start the fast with all its stringencies, such as not showering, the night before but with regard to not eating everyone may wait until the morning as if it were not a time of decrees.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Wed, 11 Jul 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Birthday on Tisha B'Av Nidcheh, Do You Need to Fast? http://revach.net/article.php?id=5238 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5238

If a boy or girl become Bar Mitzva or Bas Mitzva on the the 10th day of Av which turns out to be Tisha B'Av because the 9th of Av was on Shabbos, are they obligated to fast?

The Piskei Tshuvos (550:4) brings many opinions on the matter. The Avnei Nezer paskens that they need not fast. The fact that we pasken that on Shabbos Tisha B'Av we are noheg Aveilus b'Tzina proves that Sunday's fast is only to make up for the fast we didn't do on Shabbos. Since the katan had no obligation to fast on Shabbos he need not fast on Sunday.

Many poskim including the Divrei Malkiel, Shevet HaLevi, Lehoros Nosson, and Tzafnas Panei'ach all say that if you become a gadol on Sunday you need to fast. They base this on a Tshuvas Rashba that says we are not noheg any Aveilus on Shabbos Tisha B'Av which indicates that Tisha B'Av is totally transplanted to Sunday and not Tashlumim of Shabbos therefore the Chiyuv depends on today and not yesterday.

Rav Yisroel Yaakov Fisher in Even Yisroel says that they need to fast but for a different reason. While technically they are not obligated to fast because it is Tashlumim of Shabbos, since all Klal Yisroel is holding a day of mourning, its obligations apply to them as well, as they are now full fledged adult members of Klal Yisroel.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Tue, 10 Jul 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Rav Moshe Shternbuch: Do Adopted Children Sit Shiva For Their Step Parents? http://revach.net/article.php?id=1529 http://revach.net/article.php?id=1529 Although they are technically not related or considered family, Rav Moshe Shternbuch says (3:374) that if an adopted child grew up with his step parents and considered them to be his parents he should sit Shiva and keep all halachos of Aveilus upon their death.  While in Aveilus there is a concept of showing your sadness by keeping some rules of aveilus, Rav Shternbuch says that in this case one should keep all the details of aveilus exactly like an Aveil.

He learns this from Rabban Gamliel in the Mishna who sat Shiva for his slave, Tavi.  The Rashba says that Rabban Gamliel sat shiva because he felt towards Tavi like a father would towards his son.  Rav Shternbuch reasons that if feelings of closeness caused Rabban Gamliel to sit shiva for an Eved who has no Din of Aveilus than certainly for the people who raised you and do have a Din of Aveilus.

He adds that this is a Mitzva not a Chiyuv.  Therefore you should not be Meikil when it comes to the Din of Aninus of not putting on Tefilin or excusing you before the Kevurah of any other mitzva.  Lastly he says if you don't feel like a son to your step parents then you should just keep some halachos of Aveilus to share the pain but do not keep all the halachos like and aveil would.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Sun, 06 May 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Rav Moshe Shternbuch - Trouble Deciding, Can You Draw Lots? http://revach.net/article.php?id=3812 http://revach.net/article.php?id=3812

The Shulchan Aruch says (YD 179:1) that you may not ask about the future in stars or in lots (Goral).  It seems from here, says Rav Moshe Shternbuch (1:856), that if you are undecided in a matter it is forbidden to draw lots.  However, says Rav Shternbuch, he remembers his father-in-law once asked the Chazon Ish if when he is unsure what to do, whether he can write on two pieces of paper and draw one and follow what it says.   The Chazon Ish said that he is permitted to do so, but Rav Shternbuch says that he didn't hear the reason for permitting this seeming violation of halacha.

Maybe, says Rav Shternbuch, that the issur in the Shulchan Aruch is if someone is sick and you draw lots to see if he will live or die and then you believe the outcome.  However, when a person is faced with a dilemma what to do and has two equal choices which he cannot decide between, he may draw lots to help him choose a course of action and daven to Hashem that the right outcome will come up in the goral.  In this case it is not assur because the Goral is not determining anything in any way.  It is just helping him move forward and breaking his indecision without him trusting or relying on any power other than Hashem.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of ourability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Pleasealso understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on thistopic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions. 

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Sun, 22 Apr 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach: New Clothing During Sefira http://revach.net/article.php?id=4527 http://revach.net/article.php?id=4527 Someone asked Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach (Aleihu Lo Yibol OC286) if it is permissible to buy new clothing during Sefira or to wear new clothing that require a Shehecheyanu.  Rav Shlomo Zalman answered emphatically that it is permitted.  Since it is not brought down anywhere that it is assur, it must be mutar.

That which the Mishna Brura (493:2) says that if something happens that requires you to make a Shehecheyanu comes up then you may make the bracha, indicates that you need not avoid something that will require the bracha.

Rav Avigdor Nebenzahl adds that those who are machmir take their minhag from Ashkenaz, where they were machmir because of the devastation of the Crusaders during this period.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha.  We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Wed, 18 Apr 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Chasam Sofer - How Many Times Does It Take To Get Used To Saying Morid HaTal? http://revach.net/article.php?id=5039 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5039

The Shulchan Aruch paskens (114:8) that if you are not sure if you might have said Morid HaGeshem after it is already time to stop, for the first thirty days you must assume that you said it and must go back again. After thirty days you may assume you said it correctly. However the next Sif says that if you say it 90 times the you are already used to it. If you make a calculation there are more than 90 times in thirty days when you include Musaf of Pesach and Shabbos.

The Chasam Sofer says that if you count up the tefilos it comes out to exactly 101 times. He also points out that the Mekor for this din is the Yerushalmi who mentions nothing about 90 times but only 30 days. Therefore when asked he tells people they should say it 101. He says this idea is based on the gemara that says you cannot compare learning something 100 time to 101 times. However, he says, if you said it 90 times already and are not sure whether you said it or not, he cannot pasken against the implication of the Rema and therefore he cannot say that you should go back.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Mon, 16 Apr 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach: Is Tap Water Chametz On Pesach? http://revach.net/article.php?id=3561 http://revach.net/article.php?id=3561 Chametz on Pesach is assur even a Mashehu, a tiny drop.  If so how can we drink water from rivers or lakes.  Surely someone poured into it something chametz.  Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach (Halichos Shlomo 1:4:5) said that there is no problem since the chametz cannot be detected with the senses of a person.

Rav Shlomo Zalman held (D'var Halacha "vuv") that "Mashehu" is also a shiur and does not mean any microscopic amount.  The shiur of Mashehu is if a person were able to isolate the chametz in his cup of water it would be visible or somehow detectable through his human senses.  If not, then it is less than the shiur of Mashehu and is mutar on Pesach.

The Orchos Halacha (19) brings that while Rav Shlomo Zalman's father in law, Rav Aryeh Leib Ruchamkin was still alive, Rav Shlomo Zalman would only drink from the water that was drawn from the well before Pesach since before Pesach Chametz is batel.  However after his father-in-law's petira he stopped keeping this chumra.
 
Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Tue, 03 Apr 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Rav Moshe Shternbuch - Who Leads The Seder, The Father Or The Zeidy? http://revach.net/article.php?id=2122 http://revach.net/article.php?id=2122 Seder night is often a large family gathering with three generations present.  Often times the grandfather will lead the seder and lead the dialogue with his grandchildren.  Rav Moshe Shternbuch (2:236) raises the issue that on this night there is a special mitzva of “ViHegadita L’Bincha”; a father must tell his child the story of Yetzias Mitzrayim. How can he sit there idly and be Mivatel a Mitzvas Aseh while the grandfather does all the telling?

He answers that the father can be Yotzei his Chiyuv by making the grandfather his Shaliach.  In fact the grandfather with his age and experience can probably do a better job of instilling emunah, the whole point of the seder, into the young children.  Similarly he brings the Hafla’ah in Kedushin (30a) that says there is a special mitzva for a grandfather to give over Torah to his grandson since he is higher up on the chain to Har Sinai than the father.

So while its perfectly okay to let Zaidy lead the seder, nevertheless the father should actively participate and contribute to the conversation.  While technically his is Yotzei by making the grandfather a shaliach there is a klal, “Mitzva Bo Yoser MiBishulcho”; it’s not the same unless you do it yourself. 

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Sun, 01 Apr 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Piskei Tshuvos: How Fresh Do Your Matzos Need To Be? http://revach.net/article.php?id=2082 http://revach.net/article.php?id=2082

The Shulchan Aruch (OC458:1) says that the time to bake your Matzos is Erev Pesach after Chatzos since Matza is compared to the Korban Pesach whose proper time is after Chatzos.  (In fact there is a minhag brought in the siddur of the Arizal to say Hallel Shalem with a bracha while baking, just like they did in the Bais HaMikdash while bringing the Korban Pesach.)  The Mishna Brura concludes that the Shulchan Aruch holds this to be a Minhag and not a Din.  Therefore if one baked Matzos even a month or two before Pesach it is okay Bidi’eved.

The Bais Yosef says that this only applies to Matza that will be used for the Mitzva at the Seder.  The Bach holds that if you bake Matza more than thirty days before Pesach you are not Yotzei with those matzos.  The Chok Yaakov says that if you need to bake Matzos and send it to a faraway place you may bake it even before thirty days.  

Similarly says the Piskei Tshuvos if the amount of matza needed requires the bakeries to start production more than a month before, it is also okay.  However he says, if possible one should try to use matza baked within thirty days of Pesach to be machmir like the Bach.

Lastly he brings the Maharsham (6:99) who says you may even use Matza leftover from last year if you were careful to watch them from Chometz all year.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Thu, 29 Mar 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Piskei Tshuvos: Ma'os Chitim For Expensive Matza? http://revach.net/article.php?id=3519 http://revach.net/article.php?id=3519 The Rema brings (OC 429) that there is a minhag to distribute Chitim for matza before Pesach.  This is an obligation on every person living in the city.  What happens if the poor person decides he needs Matzos with all the hidurim and chumros which are very expensive, must the tzibur come up with the money for this?

The Piskei Tshuvos brings from the Pischei Tshuva that it is possible that they are not obligated to pay for the extra expense.  However if the poor person is a Ben Torah or he always bought this kind of matza then the tzibur is obligated to pay the extra amount.

Today when the minhag is to raise money for all the needs of Pesach and not just Matzos, says the Piskei Tshuvos, you must provide for the poor in an honorable and generous fashion just like distinguished and more fortunate people.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Thu, 22 Mar 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Rav Moshe Feinstein: Leaving Your Chometz in Eretz Yisroel When Coming to America for Pesach http://revach.net/article.php?id=5226 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5226

If a person has Chometz in Eretz Yisroel but is in America for Pesach, if the sale of his Chometz takes effect before the Zman Issur US time, it will have been in Eretz Yisroel after the Zman Issur. Is that a problem?

Rav Moshe Feinstein (Igros Moshe OC 4:94) says that pertaining to Issurim, the Zman Issur begins depending on the location of the person himself and not his chometz. However says Rav Moshe, regarding the Chometz being Assur B'Hana'a like all Chometz SheAvar Alav HaPesach, it will become assur by virtue of being in Eretz Yisroel when Pesach has already started there even if Pesach has not yet started in America for the owner.

He brings proof from a Cheiresh, Shoteh, and Katan, all of whom are exempt from ridding themselves of Chometz on Pesach yet their Chometz is assur after Pesach. We see that Chometz becomes assur irrespective of any aveira incurred.

Therefore suggests Rav Moshe, one should sell his chometz with a Rav in Eretz Yisroel whose sale will take effect before the Zman Issur in Eretz Yisroel. However he must also make sure that the Chometz does not become his on Motza'ei Pesach in Eretz Yisroel while it is still Pesach for him in America. He can do this by verbally informing the Rav that he is not making him a Shaliach to buy the Chometz back. This way when the Rav buys it back on Motza'ei Pesach the Rav is the owner. After that when Pesach is over the real owner can buy it back from the Rav.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Tue, 20 Mar 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Rav Moshe Shternbuch: Morphine For Terminally Ill Patients http://revach.net/article.php?id=2340 http://revach.net/article.php?id=2340

Patients suffering from terrible pain are often given morphine.  While it reduces the pain, it also shortens a person life.  In light of the halacha (YD 339) that you cannot do anything to hasten a person's death even as they breathe their lasts breathe, is this permissible?
 
Rav Moshe Shternbuch (3:361) says that it is permissible when there is no hope to live more then 12 months.  Since the patient's whole existence is only "Chayei Sha'a", by giving them morphine and alleviating their pain you are in essence giving them life, albeit shortening it.  Moreover the action of giving them morphine is not done to shorten their life, rather to lengthen it, even if the end result is the opposite.  Furthermore when one is in unbearable pain, that itself is dangerous and relieving it may save them.
 
Rav Shternbuch does however stress that the patient themself should only agree to take morphine if they truly feel the pain is unbearable to the point where they despise life itself. It should not be used to alleviate any pain or discomfort that they can bear through hardship.
 
In conclusion we will quote a few stirring lines from the Tshuva. "And who can bear to stand and watch a sick person heaven forbid, writhe in terrible pain and say that is forbidden to give him means to alleviate his pain.  With pain like this, his life is not considered living and he cannot live like a human being.  Alleviating suffering is also a form of salvation and it is worthwhile."
 
Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Mon, 19 Mar 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Noda BiYehuda: A Wife Giving Tzedaka Behind Her Stingy Husband's Back http://revach.net/article.php?id=5222 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5222

The Noda BiYehuda was asked (YD 2:158) if a woman knows her husband does not give as much tzedaka as he should and she runs the finances of the house and she gives a donation in line with his wealth that he would not be please with, may the recipient accept it?

Chas V'Shalom to accept it paskened the Noda BiYehuda, as it is pure theft. Although Bais Din can force a person to give the amount of Tzedaka appropriate for his wealth, who made her the judge, asks the Noda BiYehuda? Furthermore even Bais Din notifies him and takes it against his will, but if they took it without him knowing they too would be guilty of theft.

Even if the women is pregnant and wants to give generously to the poor so that they will daven for her it is assur. This is also called a tzadaka expenditure and not a medical expense. If everyone in the family has this minhag then he is obligated to let her do it as well, but again here she must at least inform him.

Whoever pasken otherwise, says the Noda BiYehuda, is strengthening the hand of the sinners and no argument can justify this nonsensical opinion.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Wed, 14 Mar 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Rav Moshe Shternbuch - Garlic & Sharp Foods on Pesach http://revach.net/article.php?id=5219 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5219

There is a minhag not to eat garlic on Pesach. Rav Moshe Shternbuch (5:127:10) say that for dry garlic there is grounds to be machmir. He explains that most people have fillings, crowns, and other dental implants in their mouths that absorb chometz all year. In order to make sure they do not make the food we chometz one should not eat hot food for 24 hours before Pesach. This would render any taste emanating from the pre absorbed chometz spoiled (Nosein Ta'am Lifgam) and would not make the food we eat on Pesach chometz.

This however does not help for sharp foods which can become chometz even from things absorbed over 24 hours prior. This combined with the pressure of the tooth cutting the food (Duchka D'Sakina) negates the heter of Nosein Ta'am Lifgam. Because of this says Rav Shternbuch it is wise to refrain from eating any sharp foods the entire Pesach.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Tue, 13 Mar 2012 03:00:00 -0700
Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach: Different Flavors For Parshas Zachor http://revach.net/article.php?id=5213 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5213

In a world with many vastly different ways of pronouncing words in Lashon Kodesh, be it Chasidish, Sefardic, Litvish, or Mizrachi, are you Yotzei listening to Parshas Zachor if you find yourself in Shul where the Baal Korei is reading in a way that is different than your own?

Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach (Halichos Shlomo 2 18:1) says you are Yotzei even though the way you heard may be a wrong way that evolved over the generations. He proves from the Halachos of Nedarim that even words that have become corrupted over time are considered viable language, Halachicly.

Nevertheless he says that L'Chatchila you should try to find a Kriah that is the same as your Mesora. Even if it is a bit of Shlep it is worthwhile as Parshas Zachor is a Mitzva that come only once a year. However, says Rav Shlomo Zalman, it should not be read over again in Shul in different pronunciations to multiple minhagim for three reasons. First because it is not Kavod HaTzibbur. Second because everyone was Yotzei the first time. Third it was never done before.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Wed, 29 Feb 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Moshe Shternbuch: Store Delivered Mishloach Manos http://revach.net/article.php?id=1942 http://revach.net/article.php?id=1942

A Rav paskened that you are not yotzei Mishloach Manos if you order it from a store that delivers it to the recipient's house.  The reason is that since the sender did not make a kinyan it does not really belong to him rather it belongs to the store owner.  In order to be yotzei the store owner must give it to a third party to be koneh on behalf of the sender and then deliver it.

Rav Moshe Shternbuch says (1:406) that this is not necessary.   We find a similar halacha that one may pay the Machatzis HaShekel to the Bais HaMikdash for his friend without his friend making any kinyan in the Shekel whatsoever.  Moreover he says that one of the reasons for Mishloach Manos is to increase friendship between friends.  Therefore this technical detail is not critical.

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Tue, 28 Feb 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Moshe Feinstein: Scheduling a C-Section http://revach.net/article.php?id=5210 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5210

Rav Moshe Feinstein was asked (Igros Moshe YD 4:74) if it is permissible to schedule a date for a C-Section delivery for a woman who already had a Cesarean delivery and the Doctor's did not think she could have a natural delivery.

Rav Moshe says it is not halachicly acceptable to schedule a date and she should wait until she goes into labor before they deliver the baby. He gives three reasons for this. First he says that even if this operation will need to be done eventually at the time of childbirth, still we don't opt to do any dangerous procedure before it is necessary as the principal of Chayei Sha'a (that every moment of life is precious and must be saved) applies to the case of operations as well.

Secondly, says Rav Moshe, unless there is some danger, it is surely better for the infant in the mother's womb until nature sends him out. Therefore we have no permission to take the baby out against its best interest. Lastly say Rav Moshe, the baby may go against the odds and come out naturally and not need a C-Section after all. Therefore for these three reason it is best not to schedule a C-Section until the baby has run its natural course in the womb.

This all of course only applies, says Rav Moshe, if there is no danger to the mother or the baby by its remaining there until the end.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Mon, 27 Feb 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Minchas Yitzchok: One Challah For Lechem Mishna? http://revach.net/article.php?id=5201 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5201

If there is only one challah available for a Shabbos is it preferable to make HaMotzi on one complete challah or to break it in half so that there are two pieces for Lechem Mishna?

The Minchas Yitzchok answers that the Rema (OC 291:4) says that even for Seudah Shlishis one should make sure to have at least one whole challah. This implies that it is more important to have a whole challah and not break it into two, as it wouldn't be called Lechem Mishna.

That being said, says the Minchas Yitzchok, we must understand the definition of a whole challah. He says that according to the Netziv, whole means not broken once it is brought in front of you. Therefore the best thing to do is to have someone else break the challah into two outside of the place where the seudah will be held and bring the two pieces to the table. These two pieces would qualify as two whole Lechem Mishna according to the Netziv.

If the challah is already in front of you and it is too late to break, then says the Minchas Yitzchok B'Dieved, you can use a whole Pas HaBa BiKisnin, meaning a mezonos food that you would wash on if you were kovei'a seudah, as the second challah.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Tue, 14 Feb 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Moshe Shternbuch: Does a Baal Tshuvah Follow the Minhagim of His Non-Relgious Father? http://revach.net/article.php?id=5199 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5199

Rav Moshe Shterbuch was asked about a Ba'al Tshuvah whose roots were from a Chasiddishe family but his father strayed and now he found his way back, whether he was beholden to his father's minhagim or since his father doesn't keep this minhagim the chain is broken?

Rav Shterbuch (1:354) says the Pischei Tshuva (YD 214) says that if the son never kept these minhagim he need not start. The Tshuva MeiAhava (2:259) argues and says he is beholden to his ancestor's minhagim.

Rav Shterbuch says that this person is beholden to the minhagim of his Rebbe'im who are like his father in this respect. He furthermore brings a Gilyon Maharsha in the name of the Chavas Ya'ir who says that minhagim are not dependent on a person's father but rather the place and Kehila that one is part of.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Mon, 13 Feb 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Vosner - A Free Inside Job? http://revach.net/article.php?id=5197 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5197

A nursing home needed to expand and renovate its building. They hired an architect to help with the redesign of the building. Shortly after beginning the work the architect quit. One member of the administrative staff who had lots of knowledge in architect and design, took control of the situation and ended up leading the project and doing the work of the architect in a perfectly professional manner. Now the question is can the staff member demand payment for the work as an architect, or did he lose his claim for payment because he did not ask for it up?

Rav Vosner answers (Shevet HaLevi 10:280) that if the inside employee did truly professional work, he has a right to be paid.  The fact that he did not negotiate extra payment for undertaking the project up front does not in any way absolve the institution of paying him.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

 

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Sun, 12 Feb 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Moshe Shternbuch: Why Doesn't the Sandak Become Rich? http://revach.net/article.php?id=5190 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5190

The Rema (YD 265:11) says that being a Sandak by a Bris is like being Makriv Kitores. Just like we know that bringing Kitores in the Bais HaMikdah makes you rich so too does being Sandak. If so why don't we see today that when a person is Sandak he becomes rich?

Rav Moshe Shternbuch (4:224) says that there are a few things a Sandak must do to be called a real Sandak that we don't do today. He brings Rebbi Akiva Eiger who says that a Sandak means holding the baby also during the Brachos and drinking the wine, not only just holding the baby during the cutting. Rav Shternbuch says that some say the Sandak must make the Brachos as well.

Additionally, says Rav Shternbuch, the Sandak is called the Ba'al Bris, meaning he pays for the Seudah as well as the Mohel if the Mohel is paid. He also quotes Rav Yaakov Kaminetzky who says that the Sandak pays for the Seudah. Others go further and say that the Sandak must buy the clothing or at least give a nice gift to the baby in order to be a true Baal Bris and Sandak.

Rav Shternbuch ends with one last point. He says that the Sandak should ask the father of the child to be Motzi him with the bracha of L'Hachniso B'Briso since the Sandak is also considered a Baal Bris. If you cover all your bases and do all this, says Rav Shternbuch, you will see wonders from the promise of Chazal!

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Tue, 07 Feb 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Moshe Feinstein: Abandoning a Local Yeshiva http://revach.net/article.php?id=5188 http://revach.net/article.php?id=5188

In 1977 Rav Moshe Feinstein was asked (Igros Mosher YD 3:75) whether the Bnei Torah in Sunderland, England should send their sons to the Gateshead Cheider where the entire parent body are Bnei Torah and the learning was on a higher level, or they should keep them in Sunderland because if the Bnei Torah all send to Gateshead, the Sunderland Cheider will fall apart.

Rav Moshe answered that he believes that the boys under seven years old should remain in Sunderland because the travel is hard for them and at that age it still won't be a very big difference as far as the learning is concerned. However after age seven when the lower level of learning will make a significant difference, and the type of friends they have play a large role in their Chinuch, the parents should send them to Gateshead and not sacrifice their children for the continued existence of the Sunderland Cheider.

With regard to girls, said Rav Moshe, they should stay in Sunderland until age nine, because their mother's influence is stronger than that of their companions. Additionally since the teachers are Yirei Shamayim and teach them properly, it is not crucial that they go to Gateshead just because the learning is even better.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Mon, 06 Feb 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Zippering A Hood To A Coat On Shabbos http://revach.net/article.php?id=4359 http://revach.net/article.php?id=4359 The Mishna Brura writes (317:15) that if you have new article of clothing you may not insert on Shabbos its belts and strings that are left there permanently  because you are Misaken Mana or fixing the item. 

The Piskei Tshuvos brings from the Chelkas Yaakov that attaching a hood to a coat with a zipper, in the beginning of the winter for the entire winter is assur just the same.  He also brings from Rav Vosner that it is even the Milacha of Tofeir sewing since it will remain permanently for the winter.  Moreover he brings from Rav Binyomin Zilber in Az Nidbiru that even snapping on an Atara on a talis is assur.

However he says there are those who are matir in all these cases because it is not Tefira and it is like buttoning your clothing which is permissible even for an extended period of time.  The matirim include the Btzel HaChochma, the Debriciner Rav, Rav Yehonoson Shteiff, and Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha.  We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Wed, 01 Feb 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Is a Poor Person Required To Give Tzedoka? http://revach.net/article.php?id=1801 http://revach.net/article.php?id=1801

The Shulchan Aruch (YD 248:1) says that even a poor person who receives Tzedoka must give Tzedoka from the money he receives. The Shach says that this Din only applies if the poor person has enough to live on even after he separates the Tzedoka.  However if he doesn't have enough to live on he is not obligated to give Tzedoka.

The Yad Avrohom says (YD 248) that a poor person who doesn't have enough to live on is only Patur from giving large sums to Tzedoka, however he is not completely Patur from Tzedoka and has to give a small amount of Tzedoka in order to be Yotzei the Mitzvah of Tzedoka.  

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Mon, 30 Jan 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Moshe Shternbuch: Yeshiva Bochur Giving Tzedoka From His Allowance http://revach.net/article.php?id=1810 http://revach.net/article.php?id=1810

If a boy goes to yeshiva and his father gives him money for food, laundry, and his other needs, is he Mechuyav to give tzedoka from the money?  Rav Moshe Shternbuch (3:282) says it depends.  If the father gives him the money to use for whatever he needs and wants then he must give tzedoka, since giving tzedoka is no less important than any of his other needs. 

However if the father specifically tells him what the money is for, then he has no permission to use it for any other purpose including tzedoka.  In the latter case he should ask his father's permission to give tzedoka from the money.  If his father insists that he should not, it would be Geneiva for him to do so.

Importnat Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Thu, 26 Jan 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Chaim Kanievsky: Is There a Mitzva of Bikur Cholim To Visit Someone Lying in a Coma? http://revach.net/article.php?id=1301 http://revach.net/article.php?id=1301 The Rosh in Parshas Vayeira says that if you visit a sick person who is sleeping, you still have the mitzva of Bikur Cholim because when he wakes up they will tell the sick person that you visited and he will feel good.  What about someone who is in a coma?  Is there a mitzva to visit them?

The gemara implies that the mitzva of bikur cholim is to take care of the sick person's needs. If there is something you can do for the comatose patient, says Rav Chaim Kanievsky, you certainly have performed the mitzva.  The Shita of the Rambam is that the mitzva is to daven for a sick person's recovery.  Rav Chaim says that if your visit will cause you to daven, this may be part of the mitzva and you should go visit.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Sun, 22 Jan 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Yisroel Yaakov Fisher: Amein To A Three Year Old's Bracha? http://revach.net/article.php?id=3431 http://revach.net/article.php?id=3431 The Shulchan Aruch (215:3) paskens that you may answer amein to a bracha that a child makes before eating food because there bracha is valid since they are "Bnei Chinuch", they have reached the age where they must make brachos.  The Mishna Brura understands from the Michaber (based on the Pri Megadim) that this is only if the child reached the age of chinuch for brachos which is 6 or 7 years old.  Rav Yisroel Yaakov Fisher was asked (Even Yisroel 8:14), if so why do we answer amein when a 3 or 4 year old make a bracha since this is Kineged the Mishna Brura?

Rav Fisher gives two reasons why we must answer amein even after the bracha of a 3 year old.  First he says that the for some reason Mishna Brura assumes the Shulchan Aruch says you must say amein when the child reaches the standard age of chinuch for most mitzvos.  He however holds that the Shulchan Aruch obligates you to say amein as soon as they start making brachos in practice, which means that they are already obligated to do so for chinuch.

The second reason he gives is that if the child is old enough to say brachos, he certainly is old enough learn to answer amein.  If we don't answer amein to his bracha, what kind of chinuch is that?

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

This article has not been reviewed by the posek of the AskRevach section, Rav Peretz Moncharsh. Any questions regarding this topic and Halacha L’Maaseh may be asked to him at www.revach.net/ask

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Thu, 19 Jan 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach, Tzitz Eliezer, & ybc"l Rav Elyashiv - Reporting Abuse If The Child May Be Placed In A Non-Jewish Home http://revach.net/article.php?id=4449 http://revach.net/article.php?id=4449 If a child is brought to a hospital battered and showing signs of cruel abuse such as burns, broken bones, black and blue marks it is forbidden for a Jewish doctor to return the child to his parents custody and he must immediately report it to the authorities who will remove the child from the home and place him in foster care.  The Doctor does not have a Din of a Moseir since returning the child is Sakanas Nefashos.

What if the child may ultimately end up in a non-Jewish home or institution?  The Nishmas Avrohom (CM 388:1) says that Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach and ybc"l Rav Elyashiv both hold that you must still report the abuse to the authorities, but you must do everything possible to try to make sure the child ends up in a home that is Shomer Torah U'Mitzvos.  He brings from the Tzitz Eliezer that the doctor is only removing the child from his parents murderous arms.  What the government does after that is not his immediate concern.

Furthermore he writes that Rav Shlomo Zalman and the Tzitz Eliezer both explicitly held that this halacha applies when a father sexually abuses his daughter, even if she is a ketana, since the halacha equates saving a girl from this abuse to saving her from murder.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha.  We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Tue, 17 Jan 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Moshe Shternbuch: Learning Mishnayos In An Aveil's House? http://revach.net/article.php?id=4548 http://revach.net/article.php?id=4548 The gemara (Moed Katan 23a) says that we do not learn Torah in a Bais Aivel.  The Rambam and the Shulchan Aruch pasken that way as well.  If so how can there be a minhag to learn Mishnayos in an Aveil's house?  This question was asked to Rav Moshe Shternbuch (4:271).  In fact said the questioner, he knew of a Gadol who specifically told his children to make sure no mishnayos is learned in the house during the Shiva.

Rav Shternbuch answered that a similar problem exists with Kaddish at the Levaya which for the same reason as above, should not be said in the presence of the Niftar.  The reason why Kaddish is said is because rather than embarrass the Niftar who cannot do mitzvos, it is a great Zechus for his Neshama.  The same thing applies with Mishnayos, said Rav Shternbuch, the learning is for the benefit of the Niftar and therefore is not something that is forbidden.  

Similarly Hespeidim and Mussar at the levaya that inspire others by reminding them how fragile life is,  all goes for the Zechus of the Niftar, since through him people better themselves.  U'Minhag Yisroel Torah Hu!

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha.  We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions
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Sun, 15 Jan 2012 03:00:00 -0800
VDarashta VChakarta: Baal Teshuva - Are You Sefardi or Ashkenazi? http://revach.net/article.php?id=1552 http://revach.net/article.php?id=1552 If a person of Sefardic descent becomes a Baal Teshuva under the influence of an Ashkenazi Rebbi (or vice versa) should he keep the minhagim of his Rebbi or must he keep the minhagim of his family despite the fact that they were not religious?

The V'Darashta V'Chakarta (YD 29) brings from Rav Ben Zion Abba Shaul who quotes a Shut HaRashba (1:353) that although one may rely on the psak of their Rebbi (even though it is not the way we paskens L'Halacha) this is only if the Rebbi is paskening on his own judgment.  However if his psak is based on the minhag of the Rebbi's family you cannot rely on it but must keep to your own family minhagim since you can only rely on your Rebbi and not your Rebbi's ancestors.

He therefore concludes that even a Baal Teshuva must keep the minhagim of his ancestors regardless of the fact that he was educated different minhagim and despite the fact that recent generations chose to not to practice any minhagim or any form of Yiddishkeit.

He also says based on the Igros Moshe (OC 2:24) that if your father or grandfather changed the minhagim of their predecessors you may follow the original family minhagim and not the minhagim you were raised with.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Thu, 12 Jan 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Moshe Feinstein: Blood For Money http://revach.net/article.php?id=4184 http://revach.net/article.php?id=4184 There is an issur for a person to injure himself.  Although it is a Machlokes in the Gemara, the Rishonim pasken that a person is not the owner of his own body to cause it harm.  What about donating blood?  If there is someone in need then there is no question.  But what if a person wants to donate it to a blood bank in return for money, may he do so? 

Rav Moshe Feinstein (Igros Moshe CM 1:103) says that he may and we should not try to stop him.  The reason is that even though you may not harm yourself in order to profit, when it comes to bloodletting it is a different story.  In times long gone by, bloodletting was a common therapy to cure people of their ills.  The gemara talks about the ins and outs of bloodletting in great detail. 

Rav Moshe says that even though our physiology has changed and bloodletting is no longer considered therapeutic, nevertheless it has not changed that much and there still must be some sort of hidden benefit involved.  Furthermore, says Rav Moshe, the procedure had become so simple and pain free that it is possible that it would not be considered harming yourself.  Rav Moshe does not condone this and ends by saying that if someone chose to donate blood to a bank, we should not protest because there is great logic behind the heter.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Wed, 11 Jan 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Moshe Shternbuch - Being Meikil When You Were Always Machmir http://revach.net/article.php?id=4563 http://revach.net/article.php?id=4563

If you are Machmir on a specific Chumra three times you may not be Meikil unless you are Matir Neder.  The reason is because doing something three times is tantamount to promising you will always do it.  

There is an exception to this case says Rav Moshe Shternbuch (4:207).  If you want to stop being machmir from here on then you need hataras Nedarim.  However if you need to be Meikil at a specific time or because of a specific event you need not be matir neder.  

The Mekor for this is the Dagul Mervava (YD 214) who says that if there is a certain day that you are noheg to fast as a chumra and he finds himself attending a Seudas Bris Mila and he would like to eat, he may do so without any hatara.  The reason is that he is not trying to end his chumra and his minhag will continue to remain intact.  He only wants to make an exception for this event and he never intended to be machmir is such a case.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha.  We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Tue, 10 Jan 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Klausenberger Rebbe: Seudas Bar Mitzva, The Night Of The Bar Mitzva Or The Next Day http://revach.net/article.php?id=4566 http://revach.net/article.php?id=4566 There are two minhagim regarding a Seudas Bar Mitzva.  One is to make a Seudas Mitzva the night the boy turns 13 in order to celebrate his entering the Ol Mitzvos.  Others do not make the Seuda that night but rather wait until the next day, after the boy has put on Tefilin.

The Klausenberg Rebbe in Divrei Yatziv (7:26) explains the reason for this.  To become a Gadol Min HaTorah a boy must have Simanim of Shtei Saaros.  While there is a Chazaka that a 13 year old boy has the requisite simanim, there is a question in the gemara whether this chazaka works for things that are D'Oiraisa (See Divrei Yatziv OC 45).

If we do not rely on the Chazaka for D'Oiraisa then the boy may not yet be obligated in Mitzvos Min HaTorah.  Therefore it is better to wait until after he puts on tefilin and celebrate that occasion.  Even if his tefilin is only a Mitzva of Chinuch M'Drabanan, still it is cause for celebration and the party is not in vain.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha.  We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Sun, 08 Jan 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach: Naming Your Child, Shimona, Binyamina, Misushelach? http://revach.net/article.php?id=3245 http://revach.net/article.php?id=3245 Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach was asked about naming a girl after a man but using the feminine form.  Rav Shlomo Zalman replied "Ein Ta'am V'EinRei'ach", it is not very tasteful.  He was against making up names of any sort, and felt people should name after their ancestors rather than originate.

When pressed about a particular name, Rav Shlomo Zalman looked for it in a sefer of names but didn't find it.  The petitioner told him that the name is mentioned in Sefer Ezra.  To this Rav Shlomo Zalman responded, "So what if it is written in Tanach. Misushelach is also written in the Tanach.  Does that mean you will name your son Misushelach?"

At the end Rav Shlomo Zalman said, whatever name you give him, he should be zocheh, to Arichas Yamin V'Shanim! (Aleihu Lo Yibol YD 161)

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of ourability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Pleasealso understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on thistopic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions. 

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Wed, 04 Jan 2012 03:00:00 -0800
Aruch HaShulchan: Do You Sit At The Head When Your Father Comes To Visit? http://revach.net/article.php?id=2892 http://revach.net/article.php?id=2892 TheShulchan Aruch paskens (YD 240:2) that you may not sit in your father's place at the table.  The Aruch HaShulchan writes (11) that this only applies in his house, however if he comes to eat in your house, you maysit at the head and your father beside you.

The She'arim HaMetzuyanim B'Halacha writes (143:2) that the Aruch HaShulchan is only coming to explain the Minhag why sons sit at the head of their own table, but the general minhag is not like that, and one should let his father sit at the head.

Either way, the Aruch HaShulchan says that your father washes his hands first and gets served his portion first.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be thefinal word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Thu, 29 Dec 2011 03:00:00 -0800
Leftover Oil - When Do You Burn Yours? http://revach.net/article.php?id=1503 http://revach.net/article.php?id=1503 Since the oil leftover from the menorah was designated for Chanukah it may not be used and must be burned (Shulchan Aruch 677:4).  This is referring to the oil from the eighth day, since all previous days can be used on the following night (Mishna Brura 17).  According to the Tur it is even assur to use it for Neiros Shabbos or for lighting candles in Shul.  The same Halacha applies to the wicks.

Technically this should only apply to the amount of oil needed to light for the first half hour since beyond that is not a mitzva.  However since a person does not specifically say this, we are machmir and do not use any of the oil.  What about leftover oil from the bottle that was never used?  The Biur Halacha says that this oil is not assur in any manner since it wasn't in a lit glass.

There are a number of minhagim as to when to burn the leftover oil.  Minhag Frankfurt was to make a fire after Shacharis on the eighth day.  Others wait until after Chanukah is over.  Some keep the oil until Erev Pesach and burn it with the Chametz.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Wed, 28 Dec 2011 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Vosner - Extinguishing The Chanukah Candles In Shul http://revach.net/article.php?id=4847 http://revach.net/article.php?id=4847

The Shulchan Aruch (OC 671:7) writes that it is a minhag to light the Menorah in Shul before Maariv because of Pirsumei Nisa. The Mishna Brura writes that it is purely a minhag and no one is Yotzeiti with this lighting. The question is can these lights be extinguished after Maariv when everyone leaves shul? Even if it hasn't burned for the minimal shiur of half an hour, since they are not candles that someone is yotzei with it would seem that you should be able to extinguish them as soon as there in no longer any Puirsumei Nisa.

Rav Shmuel Vosner (Shevet HaLevi 8:156) says that if it is within the first half hour one should not extinguish them since a guest may be yotzei with this lighting according to the Bais Yosef. Furthermore since they are also Zecher L'Mikdash it is not proper to extinguish them as the mitzva in the Mikdash continued through the night.

Even according to the reason of Pirsumei Nisa which is not applicable when the shul closes for the night, still says Rav Vosner it is not Kdai to put them out unless of course it presents a safety hazard or the shul is susceptible to theft.

Important Note: We bring this tshuvah as a starting point for discussion and not to convey any halacha. We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation. Please understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Mon, 26 Dec 2011 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach: Can You Warm Up Jelly Doughnuts on Shabbos? http://revach.net/article.php?id=1477 http://revach.net/article.php?id=1477

Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach (Halichos Shlomo Chanukah 17:11) says you can warm up Sufganiyot on Shabbos (in a Halachicly prescribed manner of course) despite two issues that arise.

The first issues is that the Sufganiya was originally deep fried which has a Din of Bishul.  Therefore warming it up would be Tzli Achar Bishul.  To this Rav Shlomo Zalman says since it doesn't change the taste from a taste of something cooked to a taste off something roasted it is not Tzli Achar Bishul.

The second issue is the jelly inside which is liquidy.  Liquid items may not be warmed on Shabbos.  To this he answered that the jelly isn't considered liquid. It is part of the donut which is mostly dry.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Fri, 23 Dec 2011 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach: Disposable Ready Made Neiros Chanukah http://revach.net/article.php?id=4221 http://revach.net/article.php?id=4221 There is a machlokes whether you may use a throw away cup for Kiddush on Shabbos.  What about Neiros Chanuka, may you use the throw away glasses that come complete with oil and wick inside and are disposed each day?

The Halichos Shlomo (2:15:5) writes that Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach was matir L'chatchila.  In the footnotes below it explains that the whole question is based on whether it is nice for the mitzva of Chanuka to use a throw away item.  Since this throw away item is made special for use on Chanuka Rav Shlomo Zalman holds that it is permissible without any reservation.

The Minchas Yitzchok however holds that the problem with a throw away items is that it may not be considered a Keili.  To this Rav Shlomo Zalman says that a Keili is not subject to the criteria of multi-use.  The question is looking at the Keili itself is it sufficient to be considered a vessel.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Thu, 22 Dec 2011 03:00:00 -0800
Rav Vosner: Are Woman Obligated To Say Hallel On Chanuka? http://revach.net/article.php?id=4227 http://revach.net/article.php?id=4227 Even though it is a Mitzvas Aseh DiRabanan SheHaZman Grama, the gemara (Shabbos 23a) says that women are obligated in the Mitzva of Ner Chanuka since they were part of the miracle.  What about Krias Hallel, are they obligated to recite it on Chanuka?

Rav Vosner (Shevet HaLevi 1:205 683) brings from the Sdei Chemed that one gadol had a dilemma and it is seems from the Rambam that women are patur from Hallel as they are on Rosh Chodesh.  

However Rav Vosner says that it seems from Tosfos (Succah 38a Mi) that they must say Hallel on Chanuka.  Tosfos says that although women are patur from Hallel on Succos they are chayav to say Hallel on Pesach night.  Tosfos's reason is that they are obligated to drink the Four Kosos, and the whole point of the kosos is to say Hallel on a Kos.

The reason why Pesach is different, says Tosfos, is because the reason we say it is to celebrate the Nes, which women were part of.  If so then it is also possible to say that the Hallel on Chanuka is to celebrate the Nes and therefore women are obligated to say Hallel just like they are obligated to light candles.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. One should learn the tshuva to verify the accuracy of our interpretation.  Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Wed, 21 Dec 2011 03:00:00 -0800
Chanuka: Why Don't Women Light The Menorah? Should They? http://revach.net/article.php?id=3160 http://revach.net/article.php?id=3160 The mitzva of Mehadrin requires each person in the house to light their own candles.  If so, why don't women, who are obligated in Ner Chanukah, light their own candles?  The Mishna Brura (675:9) brings from the Olas Shmuel that a married women is like her husband, so she doesn't light. Even single girls are batel to the men in this respect, and do not light. 

Why are women batel to men when it comes to Ner Chanuka if they are also obligated?  The Chasam Sofer (Shabbos 21b) explains that since Ner Chanuka is performed outside in the street, itis not Tzanua for a woman to light her candles among the men.  Rather they should listen to men from inside the house.

The Piskei Tshuvos (671:2) brings the Mishmeres Shalom (48:2) that says that if there are only women in the house, then in fact, all of them should light.  However even in this case it is customary for only the mother to light and be Motzi the rest of the girls.

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of ourability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Pleasealso understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on thistopic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Mon, 19 Dec 2011 03:00:00 -0800
V'Darashta V'Chakarta: A Bracha Upon Seeing A Brilliant... Am Ha'Aretz http://revach.net/article.php?id=2400 http://revach.net/article.php?id=2400

The Shulchan Aruch (OC 224:6) paskens that when you see a "Chachmei Yisroel" you make a Bracha "SheChalak MiChochmosoi Lirei'av"; He gave a portion of His wisdom to those who fear him. When seeing a Chochom who is not Jewish you make the Bracha "SheNasan MiChochmosoi L'Basar V'Dam"; he gave from His wisdom to flesh and blood.
 
Rav Aharon Yehuda HaLevi Grossman was asked (V'Darashta V'Chakarta 3:27) what happens if you see a Jew who has reached the level of "Chochom" (this determination is not the scope of this article and is a disputable matter), but only in worldly matters and not in Torah, do you make the Bracha "SheNasan MiChochmosoi L'Basar V'Dam"?   On one hand, he is walking model of Hashem's wisdom, which deserves a bracha to Hashem.  On the other hand, maybe this bracha only applies to a non-Jew since the gemara specifically says if you see a wise man from the "Umos HaOlam".
 
Although he leaves this question unresolved, he writes that he heard (although he never saw this himself) that Rav Yitzchok Hutner wrote that if we were to see Albert Einstein, we would not make the bracha, since it is an embarrassment for a Jew to be wise in worldly matters but not in Torah knowledge. 

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

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Sun, 18 Dec 2011 03:00:00 -0800