by Joel Rich
IIUC the rule is we don't lchatchila (in the first place) accept a ger who wishes to convert to marry, but bdieved (after the fact) "kulam geirim heim" (they are all converts-language of the gemara)
1. I assume this prohibition is on a rabbinic level-is it?
2. If a beit din converts the individual, what issur(prohibition), if any are they over? are there practical implications for the beit din or its members (e.g. testify in future?)?
3.Has the ger been over an issur? is it punishable bydei adam(earthly court) or shamayim(heavenly court)?
4. What about the Jewish partner-is he culpable (e.g. msayeah?(assisting))
5. What if either of the partners has charata(remorse) - what kapparah(atonement), if any, would be recommended?
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The mitzvah of “sippur yetziat mitzraim” (telling story of leaving Egypt) is one of more than telling the story, it’s to learn and analyze. “Lhagid” (to tell) is more a quick summary of what you need to know.
Some suggest “Hashta hacha” (this year here, next year…) should be first was the introduction to any celebration but R’YBS felt the tradition of the text was carefully guarded. [me – it’s a great thought – why doesn’t (almost) anybody say Al Naharot Bavel anymore?]
Discussion of symbolism of matzah (slavery and redemption) – [me – surprise – a dialectic]
“Kol Dkfin” (all who are hungry) should really be at all holidays, Passover singled out – 1) karban pesach required a group together, even the poor; 2) in Egypt we were an “am” – implying solidarity. Still true today.
When we invite “Viyifsach” it’s for the lonely as well.
Apparently was first in a series.
Putting oneself in danger to save another – is it required, permitted or forbidden? [me – if “permitted” what is HKB”H’s preference – or is he ambivalent?]. Factors include: How much danger is danger (me – leidat hasafek-when is a doubt a Doubt?), life vs. limb, saving a group vs. individual, short additional life).
Interesting insights – 1) IIUC chazal didn’t speak in percentages because statistics hadn’t been invented yet (hmmm – 10 stores etc.?); 2) Bar Ptorah on sharing the water bottle – it wouldn’t be an out and out miracle for both to survive and how do you “know” for sure the outcome (e.g. one hadn’t drunk anything before the trip and the other had).
A quick summary concerning behaviors during chazarat hashatz (repetition of the amida) [everyone knows these but too many are moreh heter (rationalize) for themselves]. (me-if we felt the power of chazarat hashatz [a la R’YBS] we wouldn’t have these issues. Also, I was mechadesh that just because one is permitted to talk doesn’t make it a requirement).
Dialectic between spontaneity and commitment to HKB”H as seen through the prayers of Avraham and Chanah. How have tachanunim [heartfelt need and request] with a regular schedule? Tkiat shofar as words without words (me – “break on through to the other side” or as R’YBS defined “Shma Koleinu” = hear our [wordless] cry).
Act alacritorily (my newly invented word) at appointed azimuth.
R’HS remembers R’Gorelik (R’HS was in his shiur part time during HS). Major influence was R’Velvel Soloveitchik – he loved R’YBS’s torah because of the Brisker Derech, but not his hashkafah (philosophy). Great sense of humor, didn’t appreciate baseless chumrot.
Me – No mention of his Kanaut or his piercing eyes?
JP – listen for the description of how Tanaim knew how to darshen psukim – I wouldn’t say for sure it contradicts what we discussed but it probably does (For those who listen to the shiur-did scientists have a mesorah as to how to make nylon from petroleum).
Discussion of “natural law” and sources which support or rebut its existence in Jewish thought. R’A Lichtenstein points out it may not be a chok (law) but mussar (good approach).
What if halacha contradicts our moral understanding? Of course halacha/torah prevails but several examples of how torah is interpreted to be consistent with such an understanding. (listen next week for a related review of a R' OY Glickman Hakohain shiur)
I won’t spill the beans on who left his backpack with R’Aharon Soloveitchik (R’Aryeh – does he have a brother named Aron?) but it does make me think about whether the concept of chavra, chavra it lei (your friend has a friend) is now on steroids given modern technology (and are there any halachic implications?).
Still no clarity as to why Shmuel was the first to say DMD. BTW I assume that R’HS didn’t mention the partnership approach (as to why government has authority) in his early RJJ article because he hadn’t raised it yet as a model (can one of his Talmidim check?) I think R’Aryeh ran out of time but a good intro. BTW, I always heard the halacha as a minimum in the name of R’YBS, not R’Wurzburger.
Discussion of Srarah (positions of authority) and possible exclusions. In particular Rambam on geirim and women – the latter a difference of opinion amongst rishonim. No clarity on exactly what is a position of authority.
R’Marc Shapiro reviews history and sources of not learning for some or all of Nittlenacht. Most seems to be oral traditions and lots of theories.
An intro to mussar study. Interesting honesty when explaining what he is teaching but does not understand. Explanation of free will vs. predestined and the “miracle” of changing midot.
Standing for Kriat hatorah (torah reading). Is it based on the concept of learning torah or reenactment of receiving torah at Sinai? Development of theories and practical implications.
“Kitvu lachem et hashira hazot…”. Is the mitzvah to write a sefer torah or own one? (me – process vs. result?) Rosh – mitzvah is to have sefarim to learn from. Rambam – specifically to write. Perhaps Rosh is doresh taam (uses the “reason” for a mitzvah to project halacha) since the “reason” here is in the torah (simu bphihem).
Many differences that flow from the understanding discussed (e.g. selling, giving to Shul, women’s requirement to write).
Interesting thought – does the fact that we are not clear on malei and chaser (certain vowels included or not) inform on this mitzvah?
Tshuvot include listening to kol isha on the radio (no). Leaving radio on over Shabbat for someone who is depressed (yes); this was controversial. Giving a pasul sefer torah to a priest helpful in saving Jews (yes), status of non – frum today.
Fukayama and the concept of social capital (me-if you don’t trust the community/others – why would you invest in the future?!) Trust as Jewish values and sources. Areas where trust in halacha is a primary motivator – 1) Neemanut (take his word); 2) Darkei shalom; 3) marit ayin; 4) Dan lkaf zchut
To be continued.
A study of the brachot of kriat shma. The traditional approach – the three brachot reflect the 3 paragraphs – 1) HKB”H as creator; 2) HKB”H chose us and gave us mitzvot; 3) HKB”H as creator.
However historically there was only one bracha (gemara debates what is was) – [me – “traditional” didn’t they know what they said that morning?] and asseret hadibrot said then as well. Reuvain Kimmelmans theory – shma as creed statement was more compact and thus asseret hadibrot dropped and parallel brachot added to highlight (me – unconvincing).
Based on pirkei avot – ayin ra is someone who only sees what others have and he lacks. Somehow tied to the split second (by Bilaam) that HKB”H gets angry, this can spread. [me – not my cup of tea]
Why if you’re involved in one mitzvah does it push off others (subject to restrictions – see the fine print) but not Talmud torah? R’A Weiss 1) Each second of limud is a new mitzvah (so you’re not osek) or 2) since requirement of Talmud torah is continual – you’d never be chayav in any mitzvot [we’re not torato umnato]
So why does Rambam say Talmud Torah does apply by pushing off marriage (you can, since involved in Talmud torah?). Possible answers 1) it’s unique to marriage (like ben azzai); 2) it’s really a mitzvah that you can do later (aino overet – see fine print); 2) Haosek exemption applies as long as new mitzvah will effect learning; 4) does apply but here it’s a question of learning in order to do – so it differs by stage of career.
[Side point – just because S”A doesn’t quote a reason where Rambam does, does that mean he didn’t understand the Rambam’s reason?]
Thursday, February 18, 2010
by Joel Rich