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Showing Questions in 'Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)'

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Question No. 1044
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 20 Sep 2005
The Question Assuming the Reshonim who hold there are no Gilgolim are right, why do bad things happen to good people? More specifically, bad things happening to children under 3 who assumingly have no halachic culpability but do have a neshama? —Josh, North Miami Beach
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 1043
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 20 Sep 2005
The Question I have two related confusions. What is the rational behind the genocide that the Torah condones in reference to Amolake? I understand we have a G-d based morality, but there still has to be a rational behind why G-d would condone such a thing? If it is because they are inherently evil, then do they go to gehenom? Second, regarding Amnon and Moav, how does it make sense to completely write off a nation because they didn't give us food and got someone to curse us? Not withstanding the poor judgment, it seems as though the punishment (establishing that no man from that lineage has the ability to change his ways, and cannot marry into the Jewish nation) does not fit the crime? I am sure we all did things in our life that are objectively comparable to their acts of apathy, so how does Hashem judge so decisively and permanently? —Josh, North Miami Beach
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 1040
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 19 Sep 2005
The Question Why is it so important for a Jewish person to have a proper Jewish burial? If he is not buried according to Halacha, will it have a detrimental affect on his Neshama? In the Holocaust, and throughout history, Jews were killed and not given a proper burial, some were even cremated. —Anonymous, Jerusalem
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 1034
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 17 Sep 2005
The Question On the one hand, Pirkei Avos tells us that we are supposed to do mitzvot out of ahavas Hashem and without regard for reweard. On the other hand, we are told that Hashem put us on this world to work hard, to learn Torah, etc. and through these actions recive reward (so we are on this world because Hashem loves us and desires to give us reward). Thus, how can we be expected to do a mitzvah entirely from love of Hashem when we were created to attain reward (and because that reward is really the main goal in our minds)? —Mordechai Menachem Mendel Monn
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 1031
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 16 Sep 2005
The Question I am studying in deep way the philosophy and the biography of Rabbi Shimshon Rafael Hirsch. I live and study in Yeshiva in Bnei Brak from one year and half and I am well inserted in the charedi society. I have studied philosophy and history at the University in Italy. I am a charedi intellectual Jewish guy, I believe in Hashem, in His Torah and mitzvos. In the charedi society of benei brak, without doubt, there is a big Kdusha and from here are borning a large part of the Gedolei HaDor. But I have a consideration to do: I think that the way of Torah Only is perfect for who only lives in the world of Bnei Brak in order to being able to become a Poseq. A Rabbi that he has studied in a classic Yeshiva & Kollel in benei brak from a charedi family, he have a good preparation in Alachah however, to my opinion, he have not a good preparation in Jewish Philosophy and he have not the intellectual instruments in order to write books or in order to teach to a not religious public. However I do not think that is always necessary that an orthodox jew must study also secular studies, but is necessary that an orthodox jew has a good preparetion in General Jewish Studies (Jewish History, Jewish Philosophy, Jewish Literature) according to the orthodox point of view. Is there in Israel orthodox Yeshivot according to the thought of Rabbi Hirsh? What do you think about the Rabbi Hirsch position? Kol Tuv. —Mordechay, Bnei Brak
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 1025
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 12 Sep 2005
The Question Shalom and G-d bless you. Despite the plea of the angels to allow Yishmael to die because of what his descendants would do to the Jewish nation he is allowed to live because Ha-Shem judges a person at the present and not for future misdeeds. Many ask and answer regarding the ben sorer who is judged "on his ending." My question is regarding the Medrash Rashi brings down on San. 101b regarding Micha: It seems the babies killed by Paro were considered thorns and future sinners and were therefore allowed to be killed. Isn't this a contradiction? —Rabbi Simcha Freedman, Boca Raton, Florida USA
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 1020
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 8 Sep 2005
The Question I read in Midrash Bereishit, "...Cham came to his wife to save her face. For this deed that was perpetrated in the dark, Cham was repaid measure for measure-he emerged from the ark black skinned, and his descendants are also black forever." On the surface it appears that having dark skin or black skin is a curse. Is this so? Are all black people smitten with the curse of Cham, openly shamed without choice before all mankind by bearing the witness of Cham's sin? If so, how does the Midrash juxtapose this point with the concept of Lashon Hara? —Gary, Valley Village, CA USA
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 1009
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 2 Sep 2005
The Question I heard recently, that soon science will be up to the level of technology where it can say almost for certain, what the weather will be for the upcoming year. This being the case, would we still have to pray for rain? After all, at that point it'll be like davenning for an open miracle. —David, London
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 992
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 24 Aug 2005
The Question Acording to the Gemora, during the years of Kibush Eretz Yisroel at the time of Yehoshu, Jews were allowed to eat pig. How can this be, as eating non kosher food causes spiritual damage? —M. Grossnass, London Golders Green
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 978
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 22 Aug 2005
The Question Dear Rabbi Leff, I have been a Ba'al T'shuva for about 15 years and decided on the "yeshivish" derech. I have considered the idea of growing "yeshish peyos" for several reasons. Some examples: It's taking an extra step of "poresh" from the mainstream society, it's a "de rigeur" that nicely supplements the personal appearance of a black hat and beard, also there are extended family members from my paternal grandfather’s side who remained frum and have them. Perhaps it’s a minhag from the “alter medina” but I never asked them. Would it be hypocritical to do so if for example I’m not makpid on Cholov Yisroel nor am I learning full time, but we do send our children to a “black hat” yeshiva/Bais Ya'acov, and we have no TV, videos, internet nor subscriptions to secular periodicals. Thank you. —Anonymous, NYC Area
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 974
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 22 Aug 2005
The Question Someone told me that Rabbi Sadiah Gaon strongly rejected the idea of reincarnation. I always thought reincarnation was an accepted Jewish belief. Now I am confused what we hold regarding this issue. —Anonymous, Beit Shemesh
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 970
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 18 Aug 2005
The Question Hi, We learn in yeshiva that you may not diagree with an interpretations or ruling by an Amorah or a Tanna. However, why can we not disagree with Rishonim? The only source we have to say that Rishonim are at a higher level then us is a fellow Acharon, so we only need to disagree with that Acharan in order to free us of this restriction, no? Also, where is the source of our inability to disagree with the Tannaim or Amorim? —Josh kon, Miami
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 967
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 17 Aug 2005
The Question People always talk about the need to be meshamesh a rebbi. How should one pick a rebbi, what does it mean exactly to be meshamesh, and how does one go about asking a rebbi if they can be meshamesh them? Thank you very much —Anonymous, New York
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 965
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 15 Aug 2005
The Question Thank you for your answer about my previous Gan Eden Question. It was very informative. I was just wondering if you could point me to mekoros which discuss the Gan Eden Shel matah vs Shel Maalah disticnction. —Anonymous, London
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 959
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 9 Aug 2005
The Question What questions regarding one's daily-life decisions (besides halacha-related issues) should you ask a rabbi? Must you follow his advice? —Anonymous, USA
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 955
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 7 Aug 2005
The Question BS"D Often teachers and Rabbonim stress the importance of learning Torah, especially for men and boys, who indeed have such a great chiyuv to learn on them at all times. Marrying a "learning boy" is certainly a very meritous thing to do. At the same time, these teachers and Rabbonim also stress how important it is for our Bais Yaakov girls to keep themselves in Torah enviroment at all times so as not to be influenced by the goyishe world and so as to maintain the tahara and kedusha of klal Yisroel. Certainly there is very much value in learning Torah, for it supports the world, and also in preserving the innocence of the mothers for the next generation. However, is it expected of every family that the husband should be in kollel or chinuch AND the wife should be at home or in chinuch as well? There are not enough students for every girl to become a paid teacher in a Bais Yaakov. How should a girl plan her education and future? Should she expect to either marry a "working boy" and stay at home--do her real job of raising her children? Should she plan to marry a "learning boy" and stay at home, living on only a stipend. Or should she try to somehow get enough of an education to support a husband in kollel and yeshiva education for her children without risking her Yiddishkeit by allowing herself into a goyishe environment? —Anonymous, United States
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 928
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 2 Aug 2005
The Question Dear Rav: Do you think that the so called modern orthodox movement has become similar to the conservative movement of 50-60 years ago? There is litle emphasis on tzniut, Torah learning, and increasingly many congregations have women's prayer groups and "bat mitzvas" where girls read the Torah and lead services, etc. So feminism seems to have taken over. What do think will be? —Anonymous
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 919
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 29 Jul 2005
The Question Why has the finding of the Zohar made such a difference to those who know Kabala? Doesn't true understanding come form communication between a deserving talmid from his Rebbi in a chain going back before the Zohar was discovered? So why should the Zohar make such a difference? Thanks again. —Anonymous, United States
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 918
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 27 Jul 2005
The Question I was just wondering, that if Hashem keeps all the mitzvos that He commands us to keep, how does He keep mitzvos that include us not worshipping any other gods but Him? Please explain. Thank you for your time. —Ross, New York
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


Question No. 903
Category Hashkafa (Jewish Thought/Philosophy)
Date Posted 20 Jul 2005
The Question I suffer from something known as Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. b"h taking medication keeps the symptoms under control 100%. When going on a shidduch do I have to mention this. If yes or if no, why? —Anonymous
The Answer Click here to listen to Rabbi Leff's answer.


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