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Showing Questions in 'Halacha (General Jewish Law)'

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Question No. 846
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 9 Jun 2005
The Question Dear Rav Leff. I would appreciate clarification on the topic of Shemus. I have heard that either three-plus Hebrew words on a paper (not necessarily with Shem Hashem) is Shemus. Alternatively, I have heard that something is only Shemus if Shem Hashem is written or printed, therefore a child's notebook is Shemus but a page from a sidur / a photocopy (which has Shem Hashem) but is not printed, can be thrown away normally. What does one do with old class notes e.g. Hilchas Shabbos, which are being re-written more neatly and completely into a notebook? Thank you —Shulz, UK
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 833
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 5 Jun 2005
The Question What exactly constitutes a neder? Should one refrain from doing something, so as not to risk being over in this area? For example, should a woman refrain from davening maariv or saying 100 brachos, etc. so as not to make a neder that she may not be able to keep? —Anonymous, USA
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 832
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 5 Jun 2005
The Question My father is overweight with high cholesterol and blood pressure. Therefore, my father is supposed to refrain from eating certain foods. Often, my father will ask for such food, despite knowing how dangerous it can be for him. How do I respond to this halachically without endangering my father's health? —Anonymous, USA
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 831
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 5 Jun 2005
The Question Referring to question no. 815: 1) why would shaving the chest and arms be any worse than shaving the face (with a kosher shaver)? I can understand that women usually shave their legs so if a man shaved his legs, that would be like women. But why the chest and shoulder would be a problem? 2) Also, what if the purpose isn't cosmetic (since those areas are usually covered) but rather the shaving is so the body won't smell or get too hot in the summer? —Anonymous, Flushing, NY USA
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 828
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 5 Jun 2005
The Question I hope you won't consider this question too frivolous. Of course I realise a jew shouldn't waste his money on trivialities when there is so much need in the world, but after setting aside tzedaka I do sometimes have a bit to spare for a hobby of mine, which is collecting antique silver. Some antique cups are obviously jewish because of a hebrew inscription or magen david, but many cups have no identifying jewish signs at all. My question is: if an antique silver cup - that looks generally like it could be a kiddush cup - has no identifying Jewish or christian marks on it - would one be allowed to purchase it and use it for kiddush, or would one have to be "suspect" that perhaps it was used as a communion cup in church? The same might apply to a pair of antique candlesticks. In the absense of identifying markings, may one assume they have not been used in church? Thank you for your informative site, and in advance for your response to this question. —Jonathan Nister, London
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 827
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 4 Jun 2005
The Question Hello. My wife went to a funeral service for the father of someone at her work. It turned out to be in a "funeral chapel." She was in a side room and there was a priest in the main room who after some speeches led a prayer service or something like that. Was it a problem for my wife to have been there? Thanks. —Anonymous, U.S.
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 820
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 2 Jun 2005
The Question Dear Rabbi, Recently I came upon a pair of Tekhelet and decided I wanted to wear techelet. This has brought about a number of questions. 1) Which custom to tie by? I have decided upon Rambam with Yemenite Chulyot. My mother is yemenite my father Ashkanazi. Is it okay if i tie in this method. 2) If I put tekhelet on one pair of tsitsit do I need to put them on all pairs?. Thanks for your help and guidance. —Eyal, Lower East side, NY
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 817
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 11 May 2005
The Question Is one allowed to have a haircut or shave on Yom Ha'atzmaut? The thinking behind this is that since we can listen to music and we also say hallel that maybe cutting hair is also permitted. —Anonymous, London
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 815
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 11 May 2005
The Question Dear Rabbi Leff, Is a man allowed to shave or wax his body hair? e.g. arms,chest,back? - Anonymous, Toronto
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 810
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 9 May 2005
The Question Thanks so much for answering my previous question. I had two other small questions that I was hoping you could help me with. 1) I heard that the minhag today is to be maykel in regards to not saying divrei kedusha in front of a married woman's uncovered hair because we've become desensitized to it being 'erva'. Is this accurate? I heard it stated in the name of the Aruch HaShulchan. 2) Is grape cold medicine for children problematic, kashrus wise, or is it all just synthetic chemicals that has nothing to do with yayin nesech? Again, thanks in advance-Dan —Dan, Jerusalem
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 804
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 5 May 2005
The Question I recently received a secular book (Perfidy) that was recommended in a book by Rav Avigdor Miller zt"l. If the book contains the word "G-d" or possibly even a quote from Tanach, then can it be brought into a bathroom and read there? Similarly, I once saw in a Readers Digest a quote from Megilas Esther. Could this be brought into a bathroom? —Anonymous, Baltimore, MD
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 803
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 5 May 2005
The Question I have a question regarding the apparent "segula" of not speaking loshon hora for 40 days (or similar). I have a hard time accepting such a segula can exist. Isn't it no more a segula than not being mechalel Shabbos or not eating treif for 40 days or similar? Granted that not talking loshon hora will benefit a person in this world and the next - but so can be said of any mitzva. It doesn't seem correct to call refraining from an issur a segula. What are the Rav's thoughts about this? —Anonymous, Baltimore, MD
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 802
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 4 May 2005
The Question May a man have a treatment done to his peyos to make them curly and neat or does this fall under "lo seelbash gever seemlas eesha"? —Anonymous, usa
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 801
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 4 May 2005
The Question Why do we only condsider someone a Jew if his mother is Jewish? I was told by an unreliable source that the reason is because one can never be totally sure of whom the father is, whilst the mother's identity is always known. Is there any truth in this? If so, nowadays, with DNA testing its possible to prove who the father is, and therefore it should be enough just to have a Jewish father? —Anonymous, London
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 791
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 3 May 2005
The Question When the post office fails to postmark stamps on a letter or package, is it OK according to halacha to reuse those stamps on another letter? —Tracy R., Matityahu, Israel
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 785
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 29 Apr 2005
The Question If one marries, and there is a death for one the chassan must mourn, if the avelus is observed before the week of festivities, does the shiloshim include the festive week,or does shiloshim extend for a fifth week because the week of festivity is not part of Avelus. This has been a very confusing chapter in my study of Avelus. —Yaakov Chana Danton, Boca Raton, FL
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 775
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 21 Apr 2005
The Question I was wondering if a man with some yeshiva education who is no longer in a learning situation would be able to sell his own chametz to a goy based on his undertanding of the laws. Must a rabbi be used to sell chametz and are these laws complicated? —Anonymous, United States
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 752
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 7 Apr 2005
The Question Regarding some research I am doing - With all of the gossip written and read by so many people on the Internet on a daily basis, aren't there halachic issues of rechilus, lashon hora and invasion of privacy? Does the Rav think some action could be taken - such as in the form of a takanah - to curtail the amount of gossip about people online? Thank you. —Michael S., New York
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 751
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 6 Apr 2005
The Question Dear Rabbi, what are the Halachic guidelines in regards to mixed company at meals? I study in a frum Yeshiva where we get to eat by our Rebbeim and kind neighbors for the Seudos on Shabbos. I have encountered scenarios when girls my age partake in the seudah. I am uncomfortable with the situation but am unsure if it is just me or there is actually an issur. What is the Halachic viewpoint? Is there anything wrong with just shmoozing? How should I deal with this? If there is something wrong with it how do I go about fixing it? And need I correct or stop my friends in the same situation? Thanks to the Rav very much for his valuable time and much needed advice.. —Avner Charkowitz, Jerusalem
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 743
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted 29 Mar 2005
The Question Is it permitted for Bnei Torah torah to a Classical Music Concert. I understand that there is an issur to mingle with goyim in thier places of gathering. —Gidon Lyons, Jerusalem
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


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