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Section: Questions   Category: Halacha
  A r c h i v e s
Halacha - Counting Jews
Submitted by Paul V  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh

The simplest thing to do would be to count the campers the way we count 10 men for a minyan, by saying the pasuk "hoshiya es amecha..." which has 10 words and each camper will be one word. You can repeat the pasuk until you have covered everyone. Even if you don't have a multiple of 10 in your group, you can count the remaining words to get an accurate count. For example, if you have 24 campers you would expect to finish the pasuk twice and get up to the word "uvareich" the third time.

If this is not practical, you can count caps or backpacks instead of people, as we find when the Jewish People were in the desert they each gave a half-shekel coin to be counted even though each coin represented a person. The only issue is with counting directly.

You can find a brief bio on the website under "the Rabbis" if you want information on my qualifications.

posted:2008-05-05 02:12:54  (0) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - wedding
Submitted by haim arye  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Answer: The custom is to spill a little wine on the hand immediately after the first two berachos and to lick it off his hand.
posted:2008-05-04 19:43:42  (2) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - Women's bathroom
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Answer: I shouldn't be a problem. Lo Silbash isn't an issue because it neither diguises oneself as a woman nor is a form of adornment.
posted:2008-05-04 07:17:02  (0) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - Yom Hashoah
Submitted by Chaim  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh

I think that a little background information will put things in their proper perspective.

The 20th of Sivan was first designated as a fast day by Rabbeinu Tam after the first Jews ever were executed because of the accusations of a blood libel. Observation of the fast gradually faded over the ensuing years as that tragedy was overshadowed by the 150 years of the Crusades. After the massacres of Tach v'Tat when approximately a third of European Jewry was killed, the fast of the 20th of Sivan was reinstituted, as on that date the glorious Jewish community of Nemirov was destroyed by the Cossacks. This decision was made by the Shach and the Vaad Arba Aratzos, and was confirmed by the Shela HaKadosh, Tosafos Yom Tov, Magen Avraham and many other Gedolim. I'm not sure why it has faded, but probably the following 300 years provided more than their fair share of tragedies to eclipse Tach v'Tat. Also, the enactment seems to have been made specifically for the Jews living in the Polish kingdom.

Yom HaShoah never had the support of a wide array of Gedolim, and in fact the Rabbanut even designated the 10th of Teves as the most appropriate day to commemorate the Holocaust. Furthermore, the date of Yom HaShoah was chosen to commemerate the valor of those who participated in the Warsaw ghetto uprising, and not the tragedy of the 6 million who were murdered. Additionally, Yom HaShoah is in Nissan, a month during which according to halacha we do not angage in public mourning.

posted:2008-05-02 12:51:56  (0) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - Stove top
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Answer: I'm not familiar with "quartz halogen rings" so I can't give you a clear answer without more information. But, if they are the type that have a smooth glass-like surface then a number of issues are raised. First of all, the glass cannot be kashered for Pesach as the pot touches surfaces to do not reach the temperature necessary for kashering. Even more important is that the stove should not be used on Shabbos. Since the heating element is always covered it cannot be considered its own blech, and one should not cover the cooktop with a standerd blech because the retention of additional heat can cause the glass to crack.
posted:2008-04-30 23:12:17  (2) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - kidushin
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Answer: It is done to obligate the chasan in the terms of the kesuba which include feeding and clothing his wife and providing a specific sum of money is case of divorce or death.
posted:2008-04-29 21:33:18  (0) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - Semach Ishto
Submitted by Y.  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh

The Chinuch in Mitvos 581 & 582 writes that the 2 mitzvos mentioned in the Torah 1)To leave town and travel far away 2) To make ones wife happy, are still applicable these days.

The Aruch Hashulchan (EH 64/4) rules that included in keeping her happy is too give her enjoyment and satisfy her wishes as much as possible. Similarly the Yeraim (Mitzva 190) says that one is obligated during first year of marrige to do for his wife anything which will bring her simcha.

However tha Chasam Sofer EH 195 the Radvaz 1:231 and the Smag write that these two Mitzvos only apply when there is Malchus Bais Dovid and are therefore not applicable these days.

Interesting is that the Chasam Sofer points out (as does the Aruch Hashulchan EH 64) that this that it is forbidden for a husband to abandon his wife and go to war is only if the war broke out after they got married. Otherwise she entered marrige on the understanding that he would be going to war. Similarly regarding business If the husband was going on long business trips before their wedding he may continue doing so during Shana Rishona (after Sheva Brochos of course).

This is all the letter of the halacha, however one must take into account practical considerations. Today people are more emotionally delicate and often immature when getting married. For example I have heard that R' Volbe zatzal said that today shana rishona applies for 3-5 years. So use a healthy dose of commen sense and remember that this is the foundation of a marrige and must be taken seriously.

posted:2008-04-29 17:06:17  (0) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - Means of Employment
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Answer: The Shulchan Aruch YD 117 says that one may not engage in commerce regularly with items that are forbidden MiDeoraisa, according to torah law. Since this would certainly apply to pigs, it would seem to be forbidden. However, if one owned a cow farm and a specific animal happened to become treif we may sell it to a non-Jew since it is not the focus of his business. This would be similar to a trapper who happened to catch a non-kosher animal and may sell it to a non-Jew, as mentioned in the Shulchan Aruch there.
posted:2008-04-25 18:08:32  (0) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - Halacha lemaaseh
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Answer: Briefly and a little simplisticly, one must know that ultimately his sucess or failure comes from Hashem and not from his actions, but he must also do the actions that would be normal to do under his circumstances so that if Hashem sends him a salvation it will not appear to be a miracle. Emuna does not mean faith that everything will turn out alright, it means belief that whatever happens is the will of Hashem.
posted:2008-04-24 16:19:16  (0) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - Women head covering
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Answer: You hit it on the nail! The Gemorrah in Kesubos derives from the Sota that under normal circumstances it would be forbidden for a married woman to uncover her hair.
posted:2008-04-23 10:19:22  (0) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - Aliyot
Submitted by Ivor Lewis  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh

In a shul where the aliyos are sold, none of this list applies. Furthermore, this affects only regular members of the shul.

Briefly the order is: 1) a chasan at his aufruf. 2) a bar mitzva boy for his first aliya. 3) one who's wife gave birth and has come to shul for the first time. 4) a chasan during sheva berachos. 5) a yahrtzeit (shocking no? most people think a yahrtzeit comes first). 6) the father, mohel and sandak of a baby who is having a bris. 7) a father who is naming a baby girl.

There are many other details, but this is a general outline.

posted:2008-04-16 13:37:05  (0) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - Second wife
Submitted by Uzi Ran  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh

No, it is forbidden according to halacha to take more than one wife, except with a heter meah rabbanim. First of all, according to my information Rabbeinu Gershom passed away in 1040, so not necessarily have 1000 years passed since the enactment of the gezeira. Secondly, it has been accepted unanimously by all Ashkenazi communities to follow the cherem indefinitely.

Anyways, would you really want more than one wife???

posted:2008-04-16 02:42:17  (0) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - Shoteh
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh

A shoteh is not a medical condition and is neither dependent on nor limited to specific illnesses, and I am not a mental health professional who can make specific diagnosis. The main point is that we are dealing with someone unable to be held responsible for his actions. The Gemorrah gives examples of behavior that would be typical of someone who is a shoteh: one who walks alone at night, one who sleeps in a cemetary and one who tears his clothing. Many schizophrenics and manic-depressives (bi-polar) would not express such extreme symptoms, while they may be likely in people suffering Down's syndrom or autism.

If the person alternates between being classified a shoteh and not, then when he is not in controll he is a shoteh and when he has controll of himself he is not.

Any determination l'maaseh must be made by a very qualified Rav in consultation with a mental health professional familiar with the patient in question.

posted:2008-04-15 15:01:33  (0) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - ksuba
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh

If an eid was truly passul than they must make a new chasuna. One certainly may not rely on the other guests, because many of them are related to the chassan or kallah or each other and would invalidate the entire kiddushin if they were counted as eidim.

However, the halachos of who is passul to be an eid are very complicated any any practical application should be asked to an experienced Dayan (which I am not) who is familiar with the particulars of the case.

posted:2008-04-15 13:05:44  (0) comments   email to a friend

Halacha - basar bholov
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Answer: A young child should wait between meat and milk the amount of time he would usually wait between meals. Meaning, if he usually eats lunch at 1 and supper at 6, he may have milk for supper even if he had meat for lunch but he should not have milchig candy in mid-afternoon. However, ther are grounds to say that chinuch is not required on any halacha that is a machlokes and one could be lenient after only one hour as long as the child ate and drank in between. This opinion may be relied on under difficult circumstances.
posted:2008-04-15 12:50:01  (0) comments   email to a friend

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