Monday, October 12, 2009

Interesting Posts and Articles #220

  1. Hirhurim on making kiddush on liquor, something which is fairly common during Simchas Torah. I recall a chassidic position that we should treat it as a solid, and thus make the shiur a kezayis rather than a reviis. :)

    Where only liquor is available, someone I know (I'll keep his identity concealed) is still makpid to have a reviis, for understandable halachic reasons. And at one kiddush he attended, he made kiddush, but wasn't going to use a shot-glass. So he used one of the big cups, which was much greater than a reviis. And then drank rov kos. The other folks in shul were a bit a shocked at this. But he was guided by his halachic principles.

    In one of the few shuls I was at at Simchas Torah one year, I saw one fellow in an argument with his wife. They had failed to bring grape juice and the shul kiddush in the succah only provided whiskey and vodka. And standing on halachic principles, he refused to make kiddush for himself and his family. Seeing this, one of the people sponsoring the kiddush got some grape juice from the fridge and gave it to the man, thus solving the problem.

    I wonder, idly -- but a full post about this is required -- if nowadays we could make kiddush during the day on challah. Where nothing else is available at night (or really if that it one's preference) one can use challah. But not during the day, because since our "kiddush rabba" is just the bracha, there would be no heker that there is a "kiddush" involved. But nowadays, everyone adds all sorts of pesukim to the start. Why shouldn't this be a heker, as much as whiskey is, for the extra words make it clear that it is a kiddush?

  2. Rav Schachter's shiur on chumra.

  3. Rabbi Gil Student in the Jewish Press on whether blogs are good for the Jews.

  4. Life In Israel on painted donkeys, and how Palestinians are painting a donkey with stripes to show kids a "zebra".

  5. At Gizmodo, two ways of counting elephants: counting elephant droppings, or using acoustic gear.

  6. At Rationalist Judaism, the Mystique of Silence, how and why some present-day Gedolim don't put forth their reasons.

  7. Should Rav Elyashiv be considered a zaken mamre for defying the Sanhedrin? Or should the Sanhedrin be considered chutzpadik for opposing a position taken by the Gadol HaDor? I am amused.

  8. Here at parshablog, a surprisingly kosher Succah at Queens College. And whether one must sit in a Sukkah when one works in Manhattan.


Rabbi Joshua Maroof said...

Regarding the Qiddush issue:

First of all, the pesuqim are not added by everyone - I know many purist Briskers who, in fact, recite only the berakha for Qiddusha Rabba.

Second, these pesuqim, even if they are recited, are not really essential components of the qiddush, and should not make "hamotzi" during the day any more of an effective qiddush.

joshwaxman said...


1) indeed, for Purist Briskers, who I kind of agree with on principle, this would be no help.

2) but not for Briskers, here is my reasoning. first, read aruch hashulchan, siman 272, seif 12, here. See how there are two components, whether it is a valid kiddush, and whether it is "yoter tov" to bless on shechar in the day according to the Rosh because bread lacks a "heker."

if i am reading it correctly, of course these pesukim which are not essential components of the kiddush would not make it an effective kiddush. but it is already one! just like a blessing on wine, or shechar, so is a blessing on bread an effective kiddush.

it is just then a matter of preference. and the rosh's stated reason for preference of shechar was the lack of heker. and surely, by adding the pesukim, it is obvious to everyone that it is a kiddush, so the rosh's concerns are obviated.

that, in short, was my line of reasoning. what think you?


Rabbi Joshua Maroof said...

It seems to me that the whole concept of Qiddush is an introduction to the meal that is distinct from the meal itself. In the evening, you have the long berakha of Qiddush which you can metzaref to the meal via the Hamotzi. In that case it is not really the Hamotzi serving as the Qiddush so much as it is the Hamotzi that serves as the bridge between the free-floating Birkat Haqiddush and the seudah. Normally the wine fulfills this function, but bread can do it too.

In the morning, the only distinct introduction you can possibly have is a drink of some sort - a toast, if you will, before the meal. The Hamotzi is the beginning of the meal itself and, since there is no Birkat Qiddush, one will lack the benefit of a Qiddush altogether.

Your meal will literally be indistinguishable from a weekday meal with bread - how can this be called qiddush?

joshwaxman said...

i'll agree that it is an interesting way of thinking about things, and i see how you can read it into the rosh, but i am not convinced that that is what rosh intended.

the words "yoter tov", and the aruch hashulchan's statement that this is how the minhag developed, imply to me that it is *better*, but not that it is meakev. that is, if no wine or shechar was available; or if someone did so with intent that it serve as kiddush, then i believe based on their wording that they would maintain that the person has fulfilled the kiddush rabba, at the least bedieved. with possible repercussions in terms of being motzi others who are obligated...

"Your meal will literally be indistinguishable from a weekday meal with bread - how can this be called qiddush?"
are you talking about the words said, or what is eaten? i know, you are saying a hybrid. but this hybrid of speech and meal exists during the day as well, in my view, for one saying the extra pesukim in the beginning. there is no blessing to be mekadesh the day, so during that daytime it is the mere blessing on whatever food it is. and if that blessing is made recognizable as "kiddush", then it certainly is distinguishable. and if someone would ask your guests who observed you, they will say how it was odd that you made kiddush over the challah in the day, not that you skipped kiddush.

and yes, one can argue it back and forth.

but i would point out that when Rosh was saying what he said, that there was no heker, he was dealing with a metzius in which these other pesukim were not being said. and if so, then it can readily be a matter of dispute what the Rosh *would* have said.

but i'll ruminate upon what you suggested some more.

and as i noted in the start, i really should post it all in an extended form in a post, starting with the gemaras and going through rishonim and then acharonim, to get a better sense of how this din is understood.



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