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Showing Questions in 'Halacha (General Jewish Law)'

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Question No. 61
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Late 2002
The Question Regarding question #36 (about the stray cats) We also have a problem with cats. Are children have "adopted" a few of the stray cats in our neighborhood. One of them has even adopted us, so it seems, and spends all of it's day hanging around our house, waiting to be fed. Now they just brought a brand new, tiny kitten home, which looks like it's about to die. What does one do is such a situation? I mean I don't want all these cats being brought into my house, but on the other hand, we teach our children about tzaar baalei chaim, and having rachmonut on Hashem's briyot, and then when they bring us these little pitiful things, we tell them they can't keep them, and can't feed every stray cat in the neighborhood, and can't bring this dying little thing into the warmth of our home? Thanks for your answers. David, Kochav Yaakov
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 58
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Late 2002
The Question What if any source is there for the custom that many frum Jews have of sitting or just lifting themselves slightly when a person who gets an aliya for krias haTorah says Borchu? Taz, Magen Avraham and Mishna Brura all say one should stand for the recitation of Borchu of an oleh la-Torah? Yisrael Kaniel, Beit Shemesh
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 55
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Late 2002
The Question Certain Orthodox groups claim that it is halachicly permissible for women to lead the davening and read the Torah, and that the long standing prohibition against it was merely a "societal norm". Is this claim valid, and if not, when do we differentiate between halacha and societal norms? Moshe Peretz Mann, Yerushalayim Ir HaKodesh
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 53
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Late 2002
The Question What is the Torah's (or your interperetation of the Torah's) view on donating organs to save people's lives after one has passed away? I heard that it's not supposed to be done halachically, but it seems that if it could be used to save a life, and that is supposedly a supreme Jewish ideal, that it should be encouraged. Paul S , Longbeach CA
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 49
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Late 2002
The Question We have all heard the stories of people jumping from the WTC. Suicide is prohibited, but in the case where you have a raging fire on one side and a 100 story jump on the other, are we allowed to make a decision what to do, which way we prefer to die? And if it seems that death is imminent, is there a preference of jumping rather than burning so that there would be a body to bury? How would we go about halachically making such a decision (assuming even having the presence of mind to do such in this situation)? Do we consider the fire to be 100% sure-death and jumping only 99.9% (or vice vesa)? Since by jumping, I am shortening my life by minutes, is this suicide? Are there other situations where suicide would be permissible or even required? How does this relate to the stories of Masada and Gamla? By halachic standards, were these heroes of Jewish history or otherwise? We have heard similar stories of Jews taking their lives in the Holocaust rather than risking humiliating acts or horrible suffering. I do not wish to judge any of these people in the situations they were in, but I am interested in the halachic approach and if the halacha takes into account one's emotions at that time. Thank you. David
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 38
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Late 2002
The Question Why do the laws of loshon hara specifically apply only to speaking evil about yidden as is stated "lo selech rachil b'amecha". Wouldn't speaking loshon hara about a goy promote hatred and violate the concept of darkei shalom? In addition if one can freely speak loshon hara about a goy, wouldn't it accustom a person to speaking gossip and make it easier for him to speak about a yid? Anonymous
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 36
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Late 2002
The Question I've been taught that it's against halacha to neuter or spay animals. Why is this? If it's because it's considered "tzaar baalei chaim", isn't it more cruel to allow the cat population, for example to multiply out of proportions and have hundreds of hungry stray cats prowling the streets, and as they do to my apartment occasionally, sneakning into people's homes and stealing (or touching) expensive food, breaking things, etc. What about the tzoris it causes people? It seems cruel to the cats, as well as to people. If it's because we are not supposed to "play G-d" and decide who multiplies and who doesn't (just an idea I had), doesn't Hashem give us the imperfect world to perfect? Animals don't have the sechel we have, work mainly on instinct, as far as I understand. We are doing for them what they can't do by themselves. By human beings, of course we don't have the right to decide, but it doens't seem like it should be the same with animals. After all...they're only animals. Thank you for your time. Pesach, Jerusalem
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 35
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Late 2002
The Question Is it forbidden according to Jewish law to self-indulge in sexual pleasure of one's body? Anonymous, Boston, MA
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 32
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Late 2002
The Question Is a Kohen permitted to visit a museum wherein a mummy is found a glass enclosed receptacle ? Anonymous
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 25
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Mid 2002
The Question This question is a bit gross, but important for me know the answer anyway. Here goes: If a person bites and swallows their nails or cuticles, should they first say a brocha? is it considered to be cannibalism? How much time should one wait before eating milchig?
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 24
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Mid 2002
The Question I had just cut up, and was just about to serve my husband some mango. I suddenly realized that he'd have to say "Shechechyanu", since he hasn't eaten any yet this year, and we're not supposed to say "Shechcheyanu" now since it's the 9 days. Is it better not to eat the fruit, yet be over on "bal tashchis", or is it better to eat it and be over on saying "Shechecheyanu"? Or is it not even considered "bal tashchis" because it's being done l'shem mitzvah? Thank you.
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 17
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Mid 2002
The Question Is there a problem offering a non Torah observant Jew something to eat, knowing that they won't make a bracha before or after eating it? If it's bread, is it different, since birkat hamazon is d'oraita? Would kavod habrios or v'ahavta lreiacha kmocha, or lifnei iveir, Kiddush/chilul Hashem come into it at all? Yocheved Kahn , Netanya/Baltimore  (72k)
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 10
Category Halacha (General Jewish Law)
Date Posted Mid 2002
The Question Tzitzit and the issue of "Taaseh VeLo Min HeAsui": If the fringis on my tzitzit get ruined, may I put on new strings on the same garment? Also, if the strings on my tzitzit are too long may I trim them? Is one allowed to shorten the length of the "Retzuot" of ones Tefilin (because their length is uncomfortable)? Shem-Tov Shapiro, Beit Shemesh, Israel
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


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