Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Interesting Posts and Articles #255

1) On the Main Line brings us a sneaky Olomeinu. It is possible that it is not sneaky, and they were just saying that since there were 'bigger' gedolim on one particular side, the picture was tilting to that side.

And see the discussion in the comment section at DovBear.

From a few years ago, an Olomeinu that asking questions = going to college = apikoris.

2) A shechita knife from an executioner's sword.

3) Shirat Devorah discusses ADHD. And see the comment thread.

My thoughts on this cannot be captured in a short blogpost. I think some people are misguided in dismissing the reality of ADHD and the help that ADHD medication can provide. For some children, it is necessary and a lifesaver. And to suggest, as some rabbis apparently do, that it is simple the result of overstimulation from computer games, is irresponsible. On the other hand, I know that there are schools out there that are way too quick to medicate, and suggest it as a first resort. Drugging children with psychotropic medications such as Ritalin just to make children conform to an inflexible system and to make the job easier for the teachers is not something I would recommend, either practically or philosophically. Many times, motivational, inspiring, teachers and/or slight changes to the classroom environment or routine would work just (or almost) as well. Or if not, home-schooling might be an option.

Related, here is a post from R' Lazer Brody in favor of marrying one's niece.
As far as the second half of your question, the Melitzer Rebbe shlit'a in the name of his grandfather, the holy Shatzer Rov of blessed and saintly memory, that ever since Abraham married his niece Sarah, there has been a blessing among Jews for marrying nieces. Also, the Shatzer Rov wrote that the doctor's warnings about hemophilia and other genetic or medical flaws as in the case of the European monarchies does not apply to a family that observes halacha, most specifically, family purity and refraining from forbidden relations. In short, if you have a worthy niece, whether the daughter of a brother or a sister, you are allowed to marry her; not only that, but you will merit the blessings of our sages from the Gemorra. In any event, I strongly urge to test for Tay-Sach's disease before you even begin approaching the prospective match.
As far as cousins go, the Shatzer Rov (see "Or Ganuz, parshat Mattot/Massaei) says that whenever the Torah says "good", according to esoteric tradition and the Arizal, there is an eternal blessing. Hashem told Moshe Rabbenu to tell the daughters of Tslophkhod to marry their cousins (see Bamidbar 36: 5-13), and the Torah says "tov" about it (ibid, verse 6). From here, the Shatzer Rov zatza"l says it's very good to marry a cousin. If it worked for Bnot Tslophkhod, it'll work for you. It's worth noting that quite a few of the Melitzer Rebbe's 12 children are happily married to cousins.

4) The Jewish Worker will a hoax pashkevil that colored strollers are prohibited. Related, DovBear notes an article at the Forward, that Chivalry is Dead. A good article, except for this part:
As Freud underlines, relationships between men and women are always fraught, but the ultra-Orthodox treatment of the public sphere renders every gesture potentially and dangerously sexual. A sign, for a recent example, went up in many neighborhoods, forbidding the purchase of expensive foreign-made baby carriages, deemed possibly too enticing for some men to resist, their intrigued gazes in the end resting on the woman pushing them along.
Poe's law in action.

5) Matzav presents the Gid HaNasheh incongruity, a lot of which is based on an article by Rabbi Dr. Leiman. I disagree with the extrapolation from this one story, though. I mean, it should be obvious that something was off in this particular instance:
Rav Yonason writes that he showed this fellow the error of his ways as the sinew this porger was referring to was found exclusively in male animals, and could therefore not possibly be the correct one, for it states in the SMAG8 “the prohibition of Gid Hanasheh applies to both males and females”; thus averting potential communal disaster. He concludes his passage reiterating the importance and necessity of a porger’s proficiency and expertise.

However, the only problem is that this quote does not actually appear in the SMAG! The SMAG in his actual quote was referring to people, not animals!  In other words, he wrote that women were obligated to keep this prohibition, as well as men. Is it possible the great Rav Eibeshutz could have made such a simplistic mistake? And if so, what was it that the Kreisi U’Pleisi showed this traveling treibberer that mollified his taynos? Many scholars over the years searched for a proper solution to this perplexing conundrum.
That does not mean that all rabbinic figures are impervious to making every single type of error, which seems to be the conclusion of the article.

6) Dr. Moshe Koppel on Judaism as a First Language, in Azure.

7) Here on parshablog, check out Vaera sources and posts from previous years on Vaera.


Y. said...

Related to color strollers, Hirshel Tzig posts on bugaboos for Rebbes, and see in the comment section about colored ones:

Y. said...

here's the link



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