Search Results "Jewish Law"
The History of the Oral Law - Part 3
Who decides practical Jewish Laws today? Rabbi Choleva discusses three different approaches to concluding Jewish Law today
Laws governing a Jewish father’s relationship with his non-Jewish daughter
Rabbi, thank G-d I became religious over a year ago and I belong to the national-religious community. I try to keep more commandments and laws from day to day and in the meantime, everything is going great and I feel closer to G-d more than ever. Unfortunately, in my secular past, I lived with a non-Jewish woman who was a rather religious Christian for several years and we had a daughter. Following a dispute, we parted, the girl stayed with her and I gradually became more interested in Judaism until I became religious. I found a Jewish woman and I married her, and G-d willing we will soon have children and establish a Jewish family. But because I am the father of a girl who is now 14 years old, I meet her often even though I know that according to Jewish law, she is not my daughter because she is not Jewish, and therefore I unfortunately have not yet fulfilled the commandment of procreation. I wanted to ask you, rabbi, my questions about the child: 1. When I meet with my daughter, she instinctively wants to give me a kiss and a hug, and I also hug and kiss her back. But recently a number of people remarked to me that this might be a problem and I may not be allowed to touch her because she is not Jewish. Is this the case? Do I have to restrain from touching her or am I allowed to hug and kiss her because I know in my soul that she is still my daughter? It will be very hard for me to refuse to embrace my daughter because I still feel that she is part of me and she really loves me and I love her very much and I do not think I can hold back from touching her. 2. My daughter sometimes brings me cookies that she bakes at home and I'm sure that the oven in their house is non-kosher even if the ingredients of cookies are kosher. There is also a problem of food cooked without Jewish supervision. I often avoid eating the cookies that she offers me, claiming I am not hungry, but sometimes she insists and begs me to taste them (she probably does not have the slightest idea of the laws of kashrut) and I find it hard to keep refusing her and unwillingly eat the cookies. In your opinion, what can I do? I am very afraid that she will be hurt if I tell her that I can not eat her cookies. 3. When we meet, my daughter is very interested about everything that occurred in my life in the past year since I started to become religious, and is quite astonished to see her father looking different with a beard, wearing a kippa, blessing over food, etc., And because she is not used to it, she often is worried that I may leave her and cut off contact with her, G-d forbid. What do you think is the best way to explain the spiritual process I have been going through? 4. All this makes me wonder what should be our general attitude towards the nations of the world? We know that man is beloved because he was created in G-d’s image and we have to respect every human being no matter who he is, but to what degree are we allowed to form friendships with non-Jews? 5. I'll take advantage of the fact that I am writing these other questions and ask you a question on a slightly different matter: My wife wears a head-covering since we got married, but now she says it's not comfortable for her and she wants to go with a wig. Could I hear what you think about wearing a wig and if it is forbidden, why is that? Thank you and have a good week.
Can a Cohen enter a non-jewish cemetary?
Q. One of my students coming closer to Judaism is a kohein. Is it permitted for him to enter a non-Jewish cemetery?
Washing the hands of a baby
I would like to find out whether under Jewish law you have to wash the baby’s hands in the morning? Thanks.
Grace After Meals - Part 4
Are children obligated to recite the grace after meals? Rabbi Lauffer elaborates further on the laws and customs regarding the grace after meals.
Can one work in a deli that serves milk after meat?
Can someone work at the deli that serves meat and cheese (in separate sections) but also serves customers cheese and meat together? If a customer comes in and wants to taste the pastrami and then taste the cheese, can the waiter serve him both cheese and the pastrami?
the questioner forgot to add that there is a clear verse in the Torah that says “They sacrificed to demons” (Deuteronomy 32:17). This shows that the Torah itself testifies that demons exist, so how could Maimonides not believe in them? Another question is how could Rabbi Saadiah Gaon not believe in reincarnation? He even says that people who believe in it are fools who are need of Hashem's mercy. Maimonides didn't even mention reincarnation in his writings and his son Avraham ben Harambam spoke sharply against this belief: “The final reward is in the World to Come. Some of the primitive nations had a hard time accepting this idea, so they began to believe in the concept of reincarnation, that when a person dies and a soul leaves the body, it goes into a different body. A wise person and someone who is true to the Torah will not believe this, but the primitive nations do, and they are the ones that Hashem erased their names from this world.” How could this be? Another question is that Maimonides in Guide for the Perplexed calls the angels that were revealed to the prophet “a chizion - hallucination”. What, Maimonides doesn't believe in angels? However, in the Laws of Foundations of the Torah he does talk about “angels”! Another question is that the Arizal commanded his student Rabbi Chaim Vital not to go the graves of righteous people on Shabbat and holidays because at these times the souls ascend on high and they are not resting on the grave. So how could it be that people do go to these graves on the Eve of the holiday and even stay there on the holiday itself?
Questions and Answers - 26
Can a person work on job that's dangerous for them? Is it permissible by Jewish law to use alternative medicine? Rabbi David Gottlieb shows us how Judaism relates to alternative medicine, adding some fascinating personal stories.
Parshat Mattot - Part 1
How can one nullify a vow or an oath? What is the difference between a vow and an oath? Rabbi Lauffer expounds on the laws and customs regarding oaths and vows.
Parshat Ki Tetzei - Part 3
If one builds a house with a flat roof, a fence must be erected in order to prevent people from falling. It is forbidden to plant two species together. One may not plough a field with an ox and a donkey together. Rabbi Lauffer delivers fascinating insights to these mitzvot.
Parshat Ki Tetzei - Part 2
What must one do if one finds a lost object? There is a mitzvah to send away the mother bird and take the chicks. What is the purpose of this unique mitzvah? Why is it forbidden for a man to wear woman's clothing? Rabbi Lauffer elaborates on the mitzvot mentioned in the Parsha.
Prayer - Part 20
Why do we read the Bible three times a week in Synagogue? How do we know who is an authentic Kohen? Rabbi Lauffer elaborates on the laws and customs regarding the reading of the Torah.
Prayer - Part 19
Why do we take three steps back at the end of the silent prayer? Learn about the conclusion of the silent prayer and the prayers that follow.
Rabbi Lauffer elaborates on the laws and customs regarding the Mincha service.
Questions and Answers - 31
Why are there so many intricate details in Jewish Law? Is there evidence of the authenticity of the Zohar? What is Judaism’s attitude towards studying Jewish Mysticism? Rabbi Gottlieb responds to more essential issues in Jewish thought.
Maimonides wrote the first comprehensive Code of Jewish Law; covering all topics in Jewish Law, Jewish Thought, Jewish Philosophy and Jewish Ethics. Rabbi Gottlieb elaborates on the background and uniqueness of Maimonides writings .
Candle Lighting - Part 2
Should one light the Shabbat candles from wax or oil? How long must the candles burn? Rabbi Chaimowitz elaborates further on the laws and customs of candle lighting.
Candle Lighting - Part 3
Where should one light the Shabbat candles? What affect does this beautiful mitzvah have on the holiness of Shabbat? Rabbi Chaimowitz elaborates further on the laws and customs of candle lighting.
Candle Lighting - Part 4
Who is obligated to light the Shabbat candles? Rabbi Chaimowitz elaborates further on the laws and customs of candle lighting.
Candle Lighting - Part 5
Where should one light the Shabbat candles, where one eats or sleeps? Does the candle lighting in the home also cover the obligation of the guests? Rabbi Lauffer elaborates further on the laws and customs regarding lighting the Shabbat candles.