Thursday, March 19, 2009

Audio Roundup XXXIV

by Joel Rich

  • Rabbi JB Soloveitchik - Moadim-Pesach Avdus Pt1: link

    IIRC you can find the details of this shiur in “Festivals of Freedom” and, to a lesser extent, “Exalted Evening”. Very psychologically based analysis of the slave personality and implications in halacha (e.g. testimony). Slave state (USSR) vs. individual slave (ante bellum US), Kinyan Guf vs. Kinyan Issur as psychological archetypes.

  • Rabbi JB Soloveitchik - Moadim-Hagadah HaLachma Anya: link

    The audio quality of the recording of the second half of this shiur is better than the first. Discussion of the meaning of Sippur Yetziat mitzrayim and the organization of the Hagadah. Great example of my earlier comment on the “Exalted Evening Hagadah” – the impact of hearing R’YBS speak of solidarity as the primary factor in our redemption from Egypt and the “current” implications for World Jewry is far greater than the excerpts captured in the commentary.

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  • The History of Jewish Theology: Must a Jew Believe Anything?Only God is be Worshiped: The Role of Angels in Jewish Thought.The Messiah: Who is He and What Will He Accomplish? Reward and Punishment: What Does This Concept Really Mean?Resurrection of the Dead: Will It Really Take Place?: link - for series page

    Interesting series discussing Jewish theology. More interesting opening question – why don’t orthodox Jews discuss theology today (me – ask R’Slifkin!).

    Primary focus on Maimonidean take on the various issues – ties in nicely with the previous TIM series on how up front Maimonides was in his Moreh Nevuchim vs. Yad Hachazakah vs. Iggeret Teiman…

    My 2¢ - While I find this fascinating, I wonder how many orthodox Jews really care how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, or are rationalists or mystics “right”? Yes Avi Mori Vrabbi Zll”hh whose Yahrtzeit Shiur is next week, I understand and I try not to spend too much time thinking and not enough time doing.

  • Rabbi David Pahmer - Background to Birchat Hachammah: link

    If you wanted to understand the astronomical background (more than twinkle, twinkle little star) to Birchat Hachama, hear (here?) it is.

  • Rabbi Yonason Sacks - Mismach Geula L'Geula: Perspectives on Purim and Pesach: link

    Why doesn’t the Rambam list zchirat yetziat Mitzraim as a mitzvah? One answer – it’s subsumed in Kriat Shmal/Kabbalat ol Malchut Shamayim.

    Nice insight from R’YBS that “kol pasuk dlo paskei Moshe…” (We don’t truncate any “pasuk” that moshe didn’t) means the unit of the mitzvah (e.g. by 13 middot the unit is middot, not the pasuk {which we did truncate}

    One relation between Purim and Pesach is we need to recognize everyday non-obvious miracles (Purim) at the same level as obvious miracles.

  • Rabbi Hershel Schachter - Sichos Mussar-The Fundamentals of Limud HaTorah: link

    When interviewing for YU masmidim program, everyone wanted to say pilpul! The main point of learning is to learn “aliba dhilchita” (to establish halacha) not just to quote all possible opinions (hmmm – I wonder if he had any particular approach /Rosh Yeshiva in mind).

    First identify if issue is duraita or drabannan. If drabannan, what duraita pattern is followed? Your sevara (logic) must have source in Talmud (you can’t make up new stuff not mentioned or strongly alluded to in Talmud).

    Then identifies my pet peeve with Talmud (or my rabbeim?) – sometimes Talmud will use different terminology in different places to refer to same thing, and sometimes use the same terminology to mean different things (me – why???)

  • Rabbi Daniel Feldman - Shoalim Vidorshim Hachag Shloshim Yom KodemHachag: link

    Review of two Talmudic sources concerning when “we ask and explicate” about the holidays and some interesting implications – if we have so many “the halachot of….” books, maybe Rabbis should focus more on agaditah?

    Not related to this: Shmuel Pfenheim, a spokesman for the Haredi Community, described the phenomenon: "Many undisciplined young women from New York and around the world study in boarding schools in Jerusalem, and they come here and crowd together with a lot of unruly American guys."

    He also explained how the stench bombs were made: "Thirty days before the holiday you take from the fisherman fish skin, heads, and various other parts that cannot be used for cooking, put them in a bottle with some water and place the bottles on rooftops under the boiling sun. On Purim eve we spread the bottles in sensitive spots."

  • Rabbi Dovid Gottlieb - The Authority and Responsibility of the Gabbai Tzedakah: link

    Interesting discussion of Srarah (position of authority) definition and general rules of the position. Touched on honors and chanifa (false flattery) in fundraising. Me – Question – we know it is allowable to honor, is it lchatchila? (for individual or organization). See R’D Feldman’s book Divine Footsteps: Chesed and the Jewish Soul for much more detail.

  • Rabbi Y Kahn - Kriat Hatorah: link

    Errors and omissions (no – not the insurance, the halachot of sifrei torah).

  • Rabbi Zvi Sobolofsky - Mishloach Manos-Fact and Fiction: link

    Mishloach Manot as a means of providing for the Purim Seudah or to spread goodwill - lots of differences based on this Chiluk (differentiation). Money story - purim chagiga concerning Posek who was so careful he didn’t accept mishloach manot of 2 stones because he was choshesh (concerned) that they may have been from an ir hanidachat!

  • Rabbi Allen Schwartz - Five Megillot: link

    Focuses on the relationship of the megilot of Ruth and Esther. Ruth is focused on a tikkun for the brothers and Yosef not getting along; Esther is focused on a tikkun for reliance on outright miracles.

  • Rabbi Ian Shaffer - Nechama Liebowitz-personal reflections: link

    An ode to Rn’ Nechama Leibowitz and her approach to learning. Example of analysis – why did Moshe break the luchot?

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