Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Rabbi Disqualifies Witness

Most recently a Rav disqualified a potential witness for a Kidushin.

The Rav is a Magid Shiur in a respected Yeshiva in E.Y. and a Rav of a Beis Knesses in Northern E.Y.

The Rav knew the designated witness and knew that on a number of occasions he was a "Kofuy Tov" to people who gave him Great opportunities.

The Rav asked that they not use this witness and explained himself.

He said that he heard from a Gadol BeTorah that Maran Harav Chaim Ozer Zt"l considered a 'Kafuy Tov' someone who deserves to be a "Psul Kahal"! He based it on the Ramban in Parshas Ki Tetzei.

And the Rav added “Someone who deserves to be a "Psul Kahal" should not be a witness”!

Utenu Kavod L'Torah!

Monday, March 28, 2011

The Power of Tefila

The Greidetzer Rav, Hagaon Rav Eliyahu Gutmacher Zt"l writes in Mesechet Shabbos page 130-A that there is a special guarantee for one who davens while a baby who is being circumcised is crying, that their Tefilo will be accepted if the designated chapter in Tehilim is Said. It is Tehilim Perek 6.

The Greidetzer Tzadik Zt"l was a Talmid of Rav Akiva Eiger Zt"l.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

This Tuesday in Tiveria

A Siyum Harambam will take place this Tuesday at the Kever of the Rambam.

Thousands are expected to join this event sponsored by Chabad.

Twenty seven years ago, the Lubavitcher Rebbe Zy"a introduced this idea of learning Rambam every day. If one learns 3 Perakim daily they finish the Sefer of the Rambam in one year.


Japan, Tzunami and Nuclear Reactors

The Rachomstrivka Rebbe in Eretz Yisroel made a strong statement about why he believes Japan is going thru such a unusual crisis.

He blamed the continued incarceration of the Yeshiva boys for crimes not committed as the reason for their catastrophe.

The Rebbe Shlit"a may have said what many orthodox jews believe.

Purim Miracle

The youngest son of the previous "Toldos Aharon" Rebbe Zt"l, became a father after 33 years of marriage. The twin babies were born on Shabbos Parshas Zachor.

The new parents would visit Kever Rachel regularly.

The father, the Tzadik, Rabbi Yosef Yoel Kahn Shlit"a the Rebbe of "Khal Mevakshei Emunah" made a grand Kiddush this past Shabbos in Lizonsk.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Real Estate

Real estate in America is at a 10 year low according to the media.

Previously predicted to go up a bit it actually took a turn for the worse.


Former candidate for vice president of the United States, mrs. S. Palin is currently visiting in Israel. She is scheduled to meet P.M. Binyomin Netanyahu in the next few days.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Purim in Yeshiva

This year many yeshivos in E.Y. will have a night Seder for 3-4 hours after Megilah reading.

The recognition that Torah is the only refuge from the anti-semitism that we are surrounded by is the catalyst for this new initiative.

In the Yeshiva of South Fallsburg there has been a long standing tradition that the Bochurim learn all thru the nite, Daven, read the Megilla, Mishloach Monos and Matonos L'evyonim and go to sleep until Seudas Purim.


Mashgiach of Lakewood

Hagaon Harav Matisyahu Solomon Shlit"a declared this week that the best dormitory for Bochurim is home. Of course this is not always convenient for a variety of reasons.

Maran Harav Y. Kaminetsky Zt"l also declared a number of times that until a bochur is 16 he should not leave home.

New Yeshiva in Carmiel, Israel

Under the direction of Maran Harav A.L. Steinman Shlit"a a new yeshiva bearing the name of his Yeshiva "Orchos Torah" will open its doors after Pesach. The Yeshiva is located in Karmiel which neighbors Miron.

The Rosh Yeshiva Shlit"a made it clear that Bochurim should be discouraged from visiting the Kevorim in Miron during the Zman.

He continued to tell the Rabbeim to convey to their Talmidim that R' Shimon Bar Yochaey would not be happy if they took off time from learning to visit his Kever.

Harav Amar, Shlit"a in Lakewood

The Sefardic Chief Rabbi visited Lakewood recently. He came to the U.S. for a relatives wedding.

His Visit was very short.

He delivered a Shiur in the Beis Medrash Eitz Chaim.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Purim 5771

As the Holiday of Purim is approaching, I want to share with you a thought which is brought in Toldos Yaakov Yosef in the name of the Baal Shem Tov.

What purpose is there in drinking on Purim ? Isn't the Holiday supposed to be something spiritual ? The same could be asked about every Shabbos. What's the point in making Festive meals and having Seudos ?

The Baal Shem Tov answers with the following parable: a pince was once sent away from his father's palace into exile. He ended up on a farm with very simple people, who needed no more than farming clothes and food with some alcohol and tractor ... After a long time in exile, the prince received a letter from his father, the king. He was so excited and really wanted to express his joy, but he didn't have with whom to share his joy. So he decided to make a big party and he fed all the peasants meat and strong wine. They were all rejoicing with the food and he was rejoicing with the letter.

So too with a person, his soul gets excited with Shabbos, with Yom Tov, with a Purim, but the body gets happy from some meat, some chulent, and some good wine/whiskey. So in order for the soul to be able to be joyous with his neighbor the body, we are commanded to drink on Purim. However let us not forget the soul. We dhould come to the recognition and appreciate all the miracles Hashem performed for us!

Have a Happy Purim!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Cont'd from Yesterdays Editorial

Continued of...

How do I know? I don't. I can only look at the past ... at what Khadafy has done – and conclude that he will do the same in the future. He can be stopped. When president reagan retaliated for the La Belle attack by bombing Libya itself, Khadafy got the message and quieted down.

It would be productive if the Obama administration got its marbles out of its mouth. Its pronouncements have been all over the lot. Khadafy must go! but not if he doesn't want to. A member of the National Security Council has rightly called “The Obama doctrine” it goes like this “You first”!

President Obama has taken prudence to the point of  PROCRATINATION!

Obama & Khadafy are a mismatch. The president is a thinker, Khadafy is a killer. Unless Obama & the west do something there is a bloodbath coming.

Just ask the Cohens. Khadafy Killed their Daughter!!!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A Moving Editorial

In a popular New York newspaper an editorial by Mr. Cohen caused a quick sellout of the Paper.

This is how it begins:

On Dec. 21,1988 Moammar Khadafy killed Theodora Cohen. That's one way of putting it. Cohen was one of 259 passengers & crew on Pan Am Flight 103. I remember her for obvious reasons (daughter)and also because to paraphrase Erich Maria Remarque, “the death of one woman is a tragedy, the death of millions a statistic”. Khadafy has his statistics but it is a tragedy we are talking about today. There is much more to come.

Khadafy's agents also blew up the La Belle nightclub in what was then West Berlin. Khadafy praised the killing of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Munich olympics as well as the assasination of Anwar Sadat. He killed dissedents in Libya and sent agents to kill them overseas ,too.

If he wins the current civil war,he will kill his enemies. A bloodbath is coming.

(To be cont'd Tomorrow)

Monday, March 14, 2011

Chief Rabbi Tries for Another Term

It appears that Harav Amar Shlit"a Sefardic Chief Rabbi of Israel would like to continue his Job after his term is finished in 2 years.

There was a law passed that the C.R. could attempt to extend his position for an extra term.

Rav Amar is quite popular amongst the Sefardic community in E.Y. and has the support of Maran Harav Ovadia Yosef Shlit"a.

Rav Amar was the center of controversy when he validated the quick conversions of the IDF.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

A Fascinating Story - Maran Rav Chaim Kanyevsky Shlit"a

This week

A young Bachur went to Bnei brak to ask  Maran Harav Chaim Shlit"a, 
a question.

The question was that though he resides in the U.S., he is planning to remain in E.Y. for Pesach. Should he keep 1 day or 2 days Yom Tov?

Maran Harav Chaim Shlit"a, asked him if his parents are going to be in E.Y. for Pesach . The Bachur said that they were not planning to be in E.Y. and that his parents wanted him to come home for Yom Tov but he decided to Remain in E.Y.

Upon hearing his response, Maran Harav Chaim Shlit"a said “Instead of asking me a question about 1 or 2 days Yom Tov you should ask me a question about Kibud av V'aym”.

Purim in the Spirit of Kovod Hatorah

In concert with previous statements made by Maran Harav Aharon L. Steinman Shlit"a regarding the special concern one must have with Mitzvos "Bein Adam L'chaveyro" a new Purim request was made.

The Rosh Yeshiva Shlit"a signed a letter asking that the Purim plays that include any kind of mocking another Yid should be stopped.

He added that when one hurts another Yid, even on Purim “They are playing with fire” and explained that years later the person that made the hurting remark can suffer and not realize that the remark making fun of another Yid is the cause of the Person's Tzoros.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Toras Harav Zt"l

The New Seforim from the great Gaon Harav Y.D. Halevi Soloveitchik Zt"l are just a small view of the breadth of his greatness. "Al Hateshuos" on Chanuka and Purim is a riveting, deep and profound work.

The Rav Zt"l, had so many talents, so much genius that it is hard to believe that he had Talmidim in all aspects of his being.

There are some who perhaps share a great photographic memory similiar to him.

There are those who have a resemblance of his creative thinking, though very few. And there are those that share his depth of thought.

Yehi Zichro Baruch!

Dvar Torah

This week we are privileged to read to portion of Vayikra, the beginning of the third book of the Torah. The portion begins with Hashem calling Moshe to the Ohel Moed and describing to him all the laws of the different offerings/sacrifices which one can/must bring to the Bais Hanikdash.

There's an intersting dispute between Rambam and Ramban as to the reason behind korbanos (sacrifices/offerings). Rambam writes (Moreh Nevochim), being that some nations worshiped animals and some worshiped demons that are similar to sheep (maybe in looks), therefore we offer that on the Altar (mizbeiach), to prove that we believe only in one G-d, the creator of all animals and humans.

Ramban learns, that the animals are the closest creatures to humans and therefore when we sacrifice them on the Mizbeiach, one should feel that what is/was happening to the animal is precisely what was supposed to happen to him/her. By bringing an offering one brought himself to atonement for all his sins.

The Akeidas Yitzchok says a more simple explanation. The truth is that G-d doesn't need our offerings he created all animals and all humans, he can take what he wants. G-d gave the laws of korbonos as a favor to us, so that we can somehow express our appreciation to Him. When someone gives a gift and the recipient refuses it, it causes aggravation and pain to the giver. On the other hand when he accepts it causes great pleasure. Hashem provided us an opportunity to have him accept our gifts, providing us pleasure.

The Torah Vayikra 1/2 the Torah states - ODOM Ki Yakriv mikem Korbon - a man who wishes to bring forth from amongst yourselves an offering... Rash"I says, that the reason the Torah uses the word Adam when referring to a man and not ISH or any other term, because just like Adam didn't bring fron stolen goods you shouldn't either.

The Klei Yakar explains what does Rashi mean from stolen goods, do I think that one would steal in order to bring an offering ? Says the Klei Yakar, unfortunately, we see many people made their money by being dishonest with others and even stealing at some level and thereafter they may be big charity givers.... G-d wants you to sacrifice honest money.

May we blessed to always offer of "ourselves" to G-d by serving Him with passion and being devoted to one another.

Parshas Zachor

We are not here to instruct anyone regarding Halachic issues.
The controversy regarding women hearing "Parshas Zachor" is one that will not go away.

Here are the different opinions:

  • Obligated:
    Rav Nosson Adler Zt"l, Teshuvos Binyan Tzion, Minchas Chinuch - mitzva 603, Chasam Sofer - Drashos, Minchas Elazar - resp vol 2, Chofetz Chaim - Sefer Hamitzvos Hakatzer, Responsa Yeshuos Malko - o'c -50, Shearis Yaakov, Rav Y.L. Diskin - derabanon.
  • Not obligated
    Sefer Hachinuch, Responsa Keren L'Dovid, Leemudei Hashem-142, Erech Hashulchan, Mateh Yehuda-282-O'C, Responsa Divrei Chaim, Maran Harav Moshe Feinstein Zt"l, Chazon Ish, Kaf Hachaim, Hisorerus Teshuva, Responsa Degel Reuven, Responsa Tzitz Hakodesh, Klausenburger Rebbe Zt"l, Maran Harav Shternbuch Shlit"a.

However our Poskim tell us that is customary that women go to Shul to hear Parshas Zachor.

See Teshuvos Minchas Yitzchok.
See Moadim Uzmanim - Hagaon Hagadol Harav Sternbuch Shlit"a.

Maran Harav Ovadia Yosef & Gilad Shalit

Maran Harav Ovadia Yosef Shlit"a, join the effort to free Gilad Shalit Shyechye.

He is requesting from his followers to take off 5 minutes of work and dedicate that time to daven for the release of Gilad.

The Rav Shlit"a, will also dedicate 5 minutes on Tuesday to daven for his release.

MK, Eli Yishai made a statement yesterday calling on the Israel Gov't to do more for the release of Gilad Shalit.

Agudah Sponsors Commemorative Event

Agudas Yisroel of America is sponsoring a commemorative event in memory of the 2 Manhegei Hador, Maran Harav Moshe Feinstein Zt"l and Maran Harav Yaakov Kaminetsky Zt"l.

The featured speakers are Hagaon Harav Shmuel Kaminetzky, Hagaon Rav Reuven Feinstein and Hagaon Rav Yisroel Belsky, Shlit"a.

Rav Belsky Shlit"a,  was a close Talmid to Maran Harav Yaakov Kaminetsky Zt"l.

These Gedolim passed away 25 years ago. Time has not mitigated the pain of the loss. America has not yet recovered from their absence.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Kavod Hatorah - News

A magazine called World of Psychology reports that most psychiatrists do NOT practice psychotherapy any longer.

The veteran psychiatrists are very disappointed at this discovery, also reported in the times.

This development has caused many psychiatrists not to accept insurance. Dr. Levine who used to devote 45 minutes per patient has educed it to 15 minutes only reviewing medications.

Years ago these psychiatrists knew their patients better than their own family. Today they rarely remember their names.

A survey in 2005 found that only 11 percent provide talk therapy.

Shlomo Hamelech says in Mishlei "Da'ag Blev Yashchena" Chazal say "Yaseechena l'achyrim".

Monday, March 7, 2011

A Word From Maran Harav A. L. Steinman Shlit"a

In a recent conversation with the Rosh Yeshiva Shlit"a, he declared unequivocally that the focus of our Avoda in our times should be on "Bein Adam L'chavero" - Mitzvos between one person and another.

Sinas Chinam, Kina'h, Ona'as Devorim, Malbin Pnei Chaveiro Berabim and Miskabed Bekolon Chaveiro not to mention Loshon Hara and Rechilus are of utmost concern particularly in the pre Messianic era.

The health and abundance of Brocho this Avoda will bring is immeasurable.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Viznitzer Rebbe of Monsey Changes Custom

The day of the wedding of the Rebbe Shlit"a family is a special day.

Across the world his Chassidim refrain from saying "Tachnun" the whole week of the Chasuna.

However recently the Rebbe Shlit"a has decided that only in the Shul where the Choson Davens should they refrain from saying Tacnun.

Reason: bla"h there are so many family Simchas that if they were to continue with the original custom, Tachnun would hardly be said. In order to preserve the Tefilas Tachnun he decided that there should be a change.

Rebbe of Skver & Internet

The Skverer Rebbe Shlit"a has involved himself in the battle against the internet.

In an article in this weekend's Bakhila it is reported that the Rebbe Shlit"a has met with advisors who discussed ways of filtering the internet to protect the young and old from reading & seeing Loshon Hora, Rechilus, Hotzas Shem Ra and other sorts of damaging content.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Halacha L'maaseh

It is quoted in the name of Maran Harav Moshe Feinstein Zt"l that the difference in price between Cholov Yisroel and Cholov Stam does not serve as an allowance to drink Cholov Stam.

(Rabbi Felder-Phila)

The Tzadik Reb Shlomo of Radomsk Zt"l

This Shabbos is the Yahrtzeit of the Tzadik of Radomsk Zt"l.

His popular Sefer "Tiferes Shlomo" is a master work of Chassidus in it's great warmth.

He would often visit the Apte Rebbe Zt"l and Reb Simcha Bunim of Pashischa Zt"l and he would visit the Divrei Chaim of Zanz Zt"l infrequently.

The Teffilos of the "Radomsker" were known to bring all those around him to great Hisorerus.

Yehi Zichro Baruch!

Two Giants

This month we all commemorate the Yartzeit of the two Manhegei Hador, Maran Harav Yaakov Kaminetsky & Maran the Posek Hador Harav Moshe Feinstein, Zichronom l'virocho.

These two Gedolim led Klal Yisroel and the Olam Hatorah for 4  decades if not more.

Rav Aharon Kotler Zt"l, once declared that the Pashtus of Rav Yaakov belies his greatness in Torah.

Maran Harav Moshe Zt"l, the Posek Hador whose Halachic genius has not seen such parallel in America, wWas also the Gadol of "Midos" in America.

Yehi Zichrom Baruch!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Parasht Pikudei

This week we are privileged to read the portion of Pikudei, completing the second book of Torah, Shmos. The portion begins with a full accounting of all the gold silver and copper that was used for different articles and vessels of the Mishkan (temple). Thereafter the Torah describes in detail how all the priestly garments were made in accordance with the specifications given in Parshas Tetzave. In addition to the weekly portion, we read a supplement called parshas Shkolim. In the supplement we read about the obligation to give a half Shekel to the mishkan, which was used for the adonim (sockets). This was an equal obligation to all rich and poor, Half Shekel from all. The reason we read this supplement now is, because in the Bais Hamikdash the collection of funds for public offerings began on the 1st of Adar. That is why we read this portion on the Shabbos preceding the 1st of Adar.

The midrash teaches us that some light headed individuals were saying that Moshe became rich off the contributions of the Jewish nation for the Mishkan (i.e. he pocketed goods for himself). Therefore, Moshe devoted time to count exactly what came in and gave an exact count as to where all the goods went.

If one thinks in to this, one can not help but wonder. Did anybody ask for an accounting from Aharon when they contributed for the golden calf ? The answer is, clearly not. Why is that ? Because when it comes to holiness people always find reason to dispute, however when there's no substance, anything goes.

Another very interesting observation: After Moshe gave the exact figures as to how much of each commodity (god, silver, copper ..) was contributed, Moshe detailed what was done with the silver (adonim - sockets for the sanctuary and for the partition) and what was done with copper (hooks for the pillars......), but no mention as to what was done with the gold. Why didn't he announce what was done with all the gold ?

The answer, says Reb Yonoson Eibshitz, is simple. 
Who were the people demanding a count ? Who are always the people at every tzedokoh appeal shedding reasons not to give ? The people who lack an understanding and a desire to contribute with their whole heart. The people with generous hearts who contribute big sums wholeheartedly never ask for a count. Therefore Moshe only gave a count for the people who gave silver and copper, for those may not have been contributed with generosity and wholeheartedly. However the contributors of gold, did not even think of asking for a count.

Parshas Shkolim
Rashi explains (medrash), that Hashem showed Moshe a half shekel coin made of fire.
The Chidushei harim explains that Hashem was trying to show him, that the contribution should be given with fire (whole heatedly).

Reb Elimelech of Lizhensk says that this was an important  message. Fire has two different purposes. It can warm someone and protect them from cold and it also has the ability to burn someone. This was the message G-d was sending to the Jewish people. If money is used properly, it can warm you up, however if it is used improperly, it can burn someone.

May we all merit to give tzedoko with generosity and always be from those who are kind not those that criticize.