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Q:

From Louise :

5/8/2016

Hi, I live on east 76th and 2nd avenue. I wanted to know if I can carry from my apartment into Central Park on Shabbat. Does the eruv cover Central Park? Thank you

A:

Rabbi:

Hi Louise,
I am giving you a link to the map of the Erub where it shows that your residence is within the Erub and you can carry from your home to Central Park. In the link, there are also notes on the areas that have specific instructions. If you are Sephardi and consider yourself to be strict on the rules of carrying on Shabbat, then the Erub will not help you to carry on Shabbat. http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?hl=en&ie=UTF8&msa=0 msid=113076836900840950588.00044dbfc593b01e16fc3&ll=40.834593,-73.996353&spn=0.121826,0.219727&z=12

Best Regards,

Q:

From yamine assouline:

8/20/2015

Dear Rabbi, i was visiting your shoule recentely and i saw that the kohanim were not taking off their shoes for birkat kohanim- is this a minhag or it has some halakhik roots many thanks

A:

Rabbi:

Dear Yamine,

The Talmud gives the reason why Kohanim had to take off their shoes. The reason given is for the Kabod - honor of the congregants. When the Kohanim "went up" to the Dukhan - the stage, to do the blessings, their feet were at the level of the eyesight of the congregants. They were wearing sandals and were all dusty, dirty and muddy, since their roads were not with asphalt or cement the way our streets are today. So our Sages instituted that the Kohanim should remove their shoes and wash their feet before doing Birkat Kohanim, so the congregants will not be disgusted and offended and say "I am getting a blessing from these people with these dirty feet"?

Nowadays, people do not ware sandals and the roads are not muddy, and shoes are very sightly, yet we still keep the decree of the Sages that was given when the Kohanim "go up" to the Dukhan- the stage. However, when the kohanim don't "go up" to recite their blessing on the stage, but they do it at the same level of the congregants, the Sage's decree is not applicable therefore they do Birkat Kohanim without taking off their shoes. 

I hope this clarifies your question.
 

Q:

From Russell Fig:

6/12/2015

Hello Rabbi, When does Slicot start this year?

A:

Rabbi:

Hi Russell,

Selihot start this year on Monday, August 17, 2015

Q:

From BagelLover2:

4/22/2015

Hi Rabbi, Can you explain why some hold that bagels are actually Mezonot and Hamossii? Thank you!

A:

Rabbi:

The general rule on the Blessing of Hamossi is that the product should be made from dough of the 5 grains, namely, wheat, barley, oats, rye and spelt, water and salt and has to be baked, not cooked. Any product made that way its blessing is Hamossi. If there are any other significant ingredients like eggs, oil, sugar or other things, its blessing becomes Mezonot. Cookies, crakers are examples of Mezonot products.  Likewise if the dough is cooked/boiled and not baked in an oven when it is made, like in pasta, its blessing is also Mezonot.

Bagels, authentic New York bagels, are boiled before they are baked. The degree of boiling acording to some authorities does render the bagel edible at least by a concept discussed in the Talmud known as the Food of Bendrusay (a person who is running from the autorities and would settle eating food that is 1/3 cooked). SInce boiled is considered cooked, and since the bagel is cooked then its blessing would be Mezonot, even if it is baked afterwards.  Add to this concept that the bagel has other ingredients other than only grain dough, water and salt, then certainly Mezonot would apply.

Other authorities, believe that the boiling is not sufficient to render the bagel edible and since it needs to be baked to be edible, then Hamossi is necessary. Even if other ingredients are added to the bagel like sugar, eggs, oil or raisins, its blessing according to this view would still be Hamossi. The reason is that for this opinion to recite Mezonot on any baked dough would require the other ingredients to be recognized by the taste and make up a significant part of the bagel or bread. A small amount of sugar, eggs, oil or other ingredients would not suffice to render the product a Mezonot product.

I hope this will answere your question.

Q:

From Yitzchak Kleinman:

4/15/2015

Dear Rabbi Abadie, We have a kollel in Midtown Manhattan. We have 8 Chabad avreichim learning full time. I was wondering if you would be able to give a shiur about medicine and halacha.

A:

Rabbi:

Dear Rabbi Kleinman,

I am apologize for the delay in answering; we had some website issues to correct before I was able to answer.

It will be my pleasure to give a Shiur in Medicine and Halakha. Please be in touch with me and we can schedule it.

Q:

From Family Purity:

4/6/2014

Dear Rabbi- I would first like to thank you for offering this type of dialogue. It has come to my attention that a new law is in place offering Sphardim from around the world citizenship in Spain. I am certain of my Sphardic roots,but I'm not sure how to prove it.Can u help me with any advice, as I definately need proof in order to properly apply for citizenship. I apreciate any and all input. Thank you!

A:

Rabbi:

Hi, The law has not passed yet; it was discussed by the Spanish Parliament and needs to be passed first and then signed into law. Once it is passed and signed into law, the Spanish Government has issued a list of approximately 5000 family names that are of Sephardic origin. If your name is one of them you may need not to do anything except prove that. Otherwise you need a letter from a Rabbi of a Sephardic congregation who knows that you are Sephardi and can vouch for that. Otherwise if you are a member of a Sephardi Federation that could write that you a Sephardi member in good standing. I ho

Q:

From Family Purity:

1/1/2012

ANI MAADIF BEILUM SHEM

A:

Rabbi:

En ma lehitbayesh; yeah lekha sheela toba. Gam ani lo rosse likhtob shekol haolam yedaa, ki zo sheela peratit

Q:

From General Halakha:

6/3/2010

Hello Rabbi Abadie, my question is are you a posek? do you know of any poskim i could contact/meet with in the ny area? if so, can you give me thier names and phone number.

A:

Rabbi:

Hi, I need you to define for me what a Posek is and in what area of Jewsih Law you need a Pesak. Every bonafide Rabbi is a Posek at his level and area of expertise. We, Rabbis receive many questions from congregants as to what is the Halakha on certain issue and most of the time we are able to answer it; that is what we learned and were trained to do. Is that considered a Pesak? Does that make us Poskim? Are you looking for Poskim that are "recognized as such" or have written books of responsa? Is that the criteria to be a Posek?. I am not sure exactly what you are looking for for me to be able to help you and direct you to the "Posek" that you are searching for. Best regards and Shabbat Shalom,

Q:

From Family Purity:

3/28/2009

can jews have tattos

A:

Rabbi:

No, Jews cannot have tattoos. It is prohibited by the Bible. This is only for permanent and semi-permanent tattoo where they require the cuting of the skin and the insertion of a dye. However stickers with children tattoos that can be removed with washing the skin though they are not prohibited, however, they are not encouraged either.

Q:

From Leonard Fein:

3/19/2009

Dear Rabbi Abadie: I am appalled to learn of what transpired at the AFSI event at EJC the other night. I assume you had no control over the event, and I further assume you share my disgust for what was said there. I very much hope you will publicly denounce the chillul hashem. Sincerely, Leonard Fein, Boston

A:

Rabbi:

Dear Leonard, Our Congregation shares in rejecting wholeheartedly the odious and repugnant remarks made at an Americans For A Safe Israel (AFSI) event that took place at our Synagogue on Wednesday March 18, 2009. On a personal level, I am horrified at such hateful statements, and I have made this clear to the organization. We did not sponsor or support that event, and neither I nor any member of our congregational staff was present. While the use of the premises has always been available on a non-discriminatory basis, the nature of the remarks made disqualifies the AFSI from any further use of the space. Rabbi Elie Abadie, M.D.

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