Sunday, March 26th, 2017

Halakha and Kabbalah: Rabbi Joseph Karo’s Shulchan Aruch and Magid Mesharim by Shlomo Brody

December 22, 2011 by  
Filed under Halakha, New Posts

Amongst the great kabbalists and legalists produced in 16th century Safed, R. Yosef Karo clearly stands out as one of, if not the, most influential figure.  Though his legal compendium Bet Yosef and code Shulchan Aruch, Karo helped shape the course of halakha for the next five centuries.  Karo produced these works while the Zohar’s [...]

The Kosher Switch: A Response from the Tzomet Institute’s Rabbi Yisrael Rosen

September 22, 2011 by  
Filed under Halakha, New Posts

The rabbinic world and blogosophere (see, for example, here) has been abuzz about the propriety of the Kosher Switch, which its producers claim allows one to halakhically turn on and off lights on shabbat.  Attached here is the Hebrew response of Rabbi Yisrael Rosen, the prominent engineer who heads the Tzomet Institute, which includes (signed) [...]

The Brain Death Debate: A Methodological Analysis (Part 3a—Rabbi Moshe Feinstein) by Daniel Reifman

June 9, 2011 by  
Filed under Halakha, New Posts

[Click on these links for Part 1 and Part 2] Rabbi Moshe Feinstein was one of the very few contemporary poskim with sufficient stature to potentially resolve the contemporary halakhic dispute over brainstem death.  That Rabbi Feinstein’s position on this issue has become the subject of intense debate is particularly unfortunate.  It is also highly uncharacteristic: [...]

The Ben Ish Hai and Women’s Hair Covering: An Interesting Case of Censorship? by Jacob Sasson

May 16, 2011 by  
Filed under Halakha, New Posts

While the nature of the obligation for married women to cover their hair has long been a subject of debate, most poskim agree that some degree of obligation exists, regardless of time or place.  Nonetheless, a number of poskim have dissented from that conventional position for a variety of reasons.  In the past several years, [...]

From Our Archives: Circumcision and Modern Technology

March 31, 2011 by  
Filed under From Our Archives, Halakha, New Posts

Laser Circumcision by J. David Bleich The Use of Anesthesia in Circumcision:  A Re-Evaluation of the Halakhic Sources by Edward Reichman and Fred Rosner Hypospadias and Circumcision by Rabbi J. David Bleich The Making of Metzitzah – 1972 by Yehuda Pesach Shields – Shlomo Brody

The Brain Death Debate: A Methodological Analysis – Part 2 (Hatam Sofer)

March 28, 2011 by  
Filed under Halakha, New Posts

The Enlightenment severely altered our conception of how the body functions, so it’s not surprising that the sources that figure prominently in the debate over brain death begin to accumulate only in the early modern period.  The teshuvah of Hakham Zevi that we cited in the previous post was largely a reaction to the way [...]

The Rabbi Linzer – Agudath Israel Debate on Brain Death: Methodological Considerations by Aryeh Klapper

March 22, 2011 by  
Filed under Halakha, New Posts

 Introduction  Recently Rabbi Dov Linzer published a statement (Appendix A), cosigned by many other rabbis, on the subject of halakhah and braindeath.  Agudath Israel of America’s office subsequently issued an unsigned statement (Appendix B) that took very sharp issue with Rabbi Linzer’s statement.  I am party to neither statement, nor do I intend in this [...]

The Brain Death Debate: A Methodological Analysis – Part 1 (Yoma Passage) by Daniel Reifman

January 16, 2011 by  
Filed under Halakha, New Posts

At the end of last year, the Halakha Committee (Vaad Halakha) of the Rabbinical Council of America released an educational paper which opposed the halakhic recognition of brain death, bringing the long-simmering debate over this issue to a boil once again.  The paper is most directly a belated response to the RCA Executive Committee’s acceptance [...]

From Our Archives: In Defense of Brain Death and Halakhic Organ Donation – Rabbi Dr. Edward Reichman

December 5, 2010 by  
Filed under From Our Archives, Halakha, New Posts

In the recent report  written by the head of the RCA halakhic committee on the halakhic issues of brain death, the article emphasizes that contemporary medicine now recognizes that even after “brain death” has occurred, there continues to be much neurological activity.  The report then utilizes this information to claim that the medical criterion established by [...]

Procreation, Women, and Birth Control: Reflections on the Meshech Chochmah by Aryeh Klapper

October 7, 2010 by  
Filed under Halakha, New Posts

 Genesis 1:27-28 G-d created the human in His image In His image He created him Male and female He created them G-d blessed them G-d said to them: Be fruitful and multiply; fill the land and subdue it; dominate the fish of the sea and the birds of the heavens, and every wild thing that [...]

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