Monday, August 25, 2008

An Aha! Moment

In his most recent posting at the Tradition Seforim Blog, which, as usual, is both enlightening and entertaining http://seforim.traditiononline.org/index.cfm/2008/8/12/Marc-B-Shapiro-A-Tale-of-Two-Lost-Archives, my friend Marc Shapiro writes, cryptically:

Since my book appeared I have also discovered many more letters, including a collection sent to one of the leaders of the yeshiva world (whose identity I am not at present able to divulge). In my Note on Sources, found after the preface, I mentioned that while such letters might cause me to reevaluate some of my conclusions, I was confident that the picture I presented would not be substantially altered. I was happy to see that nothing in these letters caused me to change any of my earlier thoughts.

WADR to Marc's judgment, I would like to see an impartial third party be the judge of whether and to what extent these new sources should "change any of [his] earlier thoughts"...

Sunday, August 24, 2008

On the plus side...

It's always good to get emails like this. Maybe they'll help me get in Olam HaBa!

Dear Rabbi Bechhofer
I just wanted to give you a yasher kochacha and Mazal Tov. I have just completed Seder Zraim of your Yerushlami Shiurim. It's taken me just under a year to get through the Seder. I listen to the Shiurim on my way to and from work and it has turned my many accumulated hours of being stuck in traffic into countless hours of Limmud HaTorah. Thank you for the wonderful Shiurim and the way you present the material. In addition, thanks and yasher kochacha to the people who uploaded the files to the Web sites and who recorded the Shiurim in the first place. I've now moved on to Shabbos.
May you continue to be Marbitz Torah.
A Talmid
(name deleted)
Ramat Bet Shemesh

From one of my talmidim at OS

I'm not sure I have an answer... :-(

Hello RYGB,
If you have time can you please answer a big question ?

On divisions within Judaism

It is very funny and sad, that when people's opinion differ there is what I call random categorization that happens. For some reason people have a need of labeling other people? Your a left wing and I am a right or you are Haredi and I am not, Ultra Orthodox and modern.

All what these labels and categorization do is separate and distance people to the point that each has to go to his own shul, and live in a different community, and has his own shulchan aruch.

I often wonder when 600,000 Jews received the Torah did they all started labeling each other.

Did 600,000 Jews with 600,000 opinions started separating from each other due their hashkafas. Did say you are lefty (therefore wrong) and I am righty (therefore right).

Why is there a need to label different Jews? Why does disagreeing with another Jew we feel a need to separate ourselves. Do people honestly believe that calling somebody a liberal or a modern Jew makes you go to Heaven because you are more strict on Judaism while for whatever reason you give yourselves a Heter to say Loshan Hara about a group of Jews.

Anyway a person spins it, whenever he refers to a somebody as a lefty or a modern he has a negative connotation when he uses that term. He treats them differently and speaks to them differently, and I know we all think we are tzaddikim that we have only the most holy thouhgts in mind when say this but the bottom when we label somebody, we try to distance ourself, and inferiorize them.


There is joke, 2 Jews get stranded on a island and live there for 5 years togather. One day they are discovered, and they look at the place they build. There is 1 house, 1 hospital, 1 gym, etc.. and 2 shulls, They asked why do u have 2 shuls, they respond this is the 1 I go to, and this is the 1 he goes to.

On a more serious note a very interesting thing I read on exile of Jews from Spain, that may clarify what I am saying.

The following is taken for Anti-Maimonidean demons by Jose Faur

R. Solomon Al'ami (c. 1370-1420), himself a foe of philosophical studies, described the new ministry produced in Spain:

Some of our recent sages lost their way in the wilderness! They erred[even with] the most obvious! Because they hate and are jealous of each other, and put up for sale the Torah for presents. Their goal of their curriculum is to know how to read [the Torah] meticulously and
expand their own innovations. The study of Talmud and other works [also is wanting] because they are concerned with every minute detail of the law and the diVerent views and opinions [not with its sub-stance]. They thrust aside the humility of the virtuous, temperance
and holiness. What [one rabbi] instructs the other darkens; what [one rabbi] permits the other prohibits. Through their quarrels the Law had become two! They knit [their views] on a spider's web, embarrassing themselves and exposing their wickedness: their eyes are closed and cannot see; their hearts fail to understand. They show favor [when
issuing legal decisions] of the Law, and fail to tell the people their disgrace. Because God had poured over them a spirit of foolishness and had close their eyes. This is what disgraces the Torah in the eyes of all those who see and hear [them].
R. Solomon Al'ami, Iggeret Musar, A.A. Haberman, ed. ( Jerusalem, 1946), pp.40-41

Have a good day.

Rav Elyashiv shlita serves notice...

הגרי"ש אלישיב "אין לסמוך על תשובותי בעל פה"


שמעתי מפי עדים נאמנים ששמעו מחתנו של הרב אלישיב הגאון רבי עזריאל אויערבך שאמר להרב גלבר בעל האורחות שבת שלא יכתוב בספר אורחות שבת פסקים ששמע בע"פ מהגרי"ש אלישיב בשנים האחרונות.

ר' עזריאל נימק ואמר כי הרב אלישיב אמר לו שלא לסמוך להלכה למעשה על השאלות שנשאל בשנים האחרונות בעל פה (רק מה שבכתב), וזאת בגלל שהרב אלישיב אמר לו שמשיב לשואלים מה שנראה לו מסברה (הם הרי שואלים מה נראה לי נימק) ולא מתוך ידיעה ולכן לא לסמוך על הדברים הלכה למעשה.

עם זאת ציין כי השאלות שנשאל בעל פה בשנים מוקדמות יותר ניתן לסמוך גם הלכה למעשה, מה שאין כן בשנים האחרונות בהם הגרי"ש חלש יותר.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Following further links...

Perhaps the most famous Kel Adon of them all, with interesting notes (follow the link for לשמיעה איכותית).

http://www.piyut.org.il/tradition/1172.html?currPerformance=1545

Looking a bit further at that site...

...interesting, the original words for "HaTikvah" are considerably more religious than the small excerpt that made the final cut for the Israeli national anthem.

http://zemereshet.co.il/song.asp?id=438

Thursday, August 21, 2008

שקעה חמה

http://www.zemer.co.il/song.asp?id=118

The niggun used for RAEK's Shak'a Chama in its "original" (albeit this is subject to dispute, see the comments) usage for Tchernichovski's distinctly anti-religious "Ani Ma'amin." There is a Kol Isha issue with the main recording, although it is strictly speaking permissible (for me, at least), since I have no idea what the singer looks like. With the alternative recording there's much less of an issue, in any event, since it is sung by a large, mixed group.

The tune is actually pretty generically Russian folk-style. Frankly, I was always unhappy with RAEK's being so intextricably linked to this really out-of-character poem. Oh well, azoi hoht dehr Hashgocho ge'firt, v'im kabbalah he nekabbel.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

New Respository of many MP3 files, mostly of talks I have given at OS

Reuven Meir Caplan has graciously compiled a repository of many of the MP3 audios of the shiurim that I have given at Ohr Somayach in Monsey. He has also included many of the shiurim I have given elsewhere that are available on the web.

Here is the current list at http://www.sumseqfiles.com/shiurim/:


Inventory of http://www.sumseqfiles.com/shiurim/Rabbi_Yosef_Gavriel_Bechhofer/ - 2.65 GB


13 Principles of Faith - 167.65 MB



01-03-05_13-principles_prophecy_nach-bital_moshe-vs-others_lenses.mp3


01-10-05_13-principles_sefer-torah_scribal-errors_etc.mp3


01-17-05_13-principles_no-change-in-H_free-will-vs-all-knowing.mp3


01-19-05_13-principles_chassidic-view-on-free-will_eigth-ninth-mitzvahs4goys.mp3


01-24-05_13-principles_Reb-Tzadok-view-on-free-will_intent-pleasure_adam-river_prostitute.mp3


08-18-04_13-principles_moshiach_reqs_bar-chochbah_compell_beat-up-4-get.mp3


09-01-04_13-principles_the-world-to-come_rambam-vs-ban.mp3


10-02-03_13-principles_not-all-torah-at-sinai_prophecy-ideas.mp3


10-27-03_13-principles_throne-of-glory_visions.mp3


11-24-04_13-principles_daven2object-or-no_six-constant-mitzvahs_bathroom-thoughts.mp3


11-27-03_13-principles_chiyas-ha-maisim_olam-ha-ba.mp3


12-01-04_13-principles_kabbalah-sparks-beard-shaved-head.mp3


12-06-04_13-principles_suffering4others_everything-not-HaShem.mp3


12-08-04_13-principles_prayer_mishaberach-meaningless_goys-can-offer-karbon.mp3


12-13-04_13-principles_command-vs-request-animals.mp3


9-21-03_13-principles_no-daven-2-angels-dead_fear-of-shulchan.mp3


9-22-03_13-principles_prohpecy_belive-not-all_conservative-faith.mp3


9-25-03_13-principles_detailes-on-prophecy_ruach-ha-kodesh.mp3


9-29-03_13-principles_prophecy_moshiach-not-from-judah_kuzari.mp3


9-30-03_13-principles_moshes-prophecy_goyish-midrash.mp3


Ani Ma'amin Principle 5 of Rambam Worshipping G_d Nothing Else .ram


Age of the Universe - 55.09 MB



10-18-04_Age-Of-Universe_4-approches_mabul-disc.mp3


10-20-04_Age-Of-Universe_more-approches_Herche-vs-YU.mp3


12-27-04_age-of-universe_complete-overview.mp3


creation_bereshies_teferes-yisroel.mp3


The Age of the Universe 1 the problems.ram


The Age of the Universe 2 the problems .ram


The Age of the Universe 3 Systematic Approach.ram


The Age of the Universe 4 Evolution .ram


The Age of the Universe 5 The Future .ram


Aggadata - 80.36 MB



Aggadata_geese_kiruv4goys_rutt.mp3


Aggadata_gen-of-desert_rater-R-movies.mp3


Aggadata_marashah_hefker-interps.mp3


Aggadata_slifkin_scaience-torah_history-must-b-true.wma


Aggadata-frog-islam.mp3


Aggadata-science-halachah-shadim-meiri.mp3


Aggadata-tan-careaboutworld-btdissalusionment-fish-stry.mp3


Alu v'Alu - 43.58 MB



06-23-04_all-torah-opinions-true_torah-before-creation1of2.mp3


06-23-04_all-torah-opinions-true_torah-before-creation2of2.mp3


06-24-04_how2halachasRboth-true1of2.mp3


06-24-04_how2halachasRboth-true2of2.mp3


06-28-04_alu-v-alu-conclusion.mp3


11-10-04_alu-v-alu_rabbis-create-halachaic-reality.mp3


Avodas Hashem Debates - 73.36 MB



Avodas Hashem Debate 1.mp3


Avodas Hashem Debate 2.mp3


Avodas Hashem Debate 3.mp3


Avodas Hashem Debate 4.mp3


Avodas Hashem Debate 5.mp3


Avodas Hashem Debate 6.mp3


Avodas Hashem Debate 7.mp3


Avodas Hashem Debate 8.mp3


Avodas Hashem Debate 9.mp3


Careers and Torah Life - 34.48 MB



06-29-04_frum-educational-phil_career-vs-scholar1of2.mp3


06-29-04_frum-educational-phil_career-vs-scholar2of2.mp3


06-30-04_careers-and-Torah_derek-eretz.mp3


07-01-04_career-vs-study-torah-all-day.mp3


Halachah - 63.01 MB



Cholov_Yisroel.mp3


death.mp3


euthinasia.mp3


organ_transplants.mp3


Vegetarianism in Halacha .ram


Halachic Times of Day - 65.98 MB



01-07-04_Times-of-day_International-Halachic-Dateline_4th-of-world-suffek.mp3


01-08-04_Times-of-day_International-Halachic-Dateline_crossing-the-line.mp3


12-01-03_Times-of-day_nightfall_yearcount.mp3


12-02-03_Times-of-day_nightfall-opns_stars.mp3


12-03-03_Times-of-day_night_dome-vs-orbit.mp3


12-04-03_Times-of-day_dome(R'Tam)-probs.mp3


12-07-03_Times-of-day_define-mins_shabbos-times.mp3


Mishpatim-Justice - 40.06 MB



07-07-05_judges_justice_torah-court-vs-goy_suicide.mp3


file-sharing_buisness-ethics_law-vs-higher-stnd.mp3


giving-money-back-to-goy.mp3


white-collar-stealing_society_tax-evasion_speeding.mp3


Nach - Ruth - 65.92 MB



YGB_024_Ruth.mp3


YGB_025_Ruth.mp3


YGB_026_Ruth.mp3


YGB_027_Ruth.mp3


YGB_028_Ruth.mp3


YGB_029_Ruth.mp3


Nach - Shmuel 1 - 62.92 MB



YGB_034_ShmuelA.mp3


YGB_035_ShmuelA.mp3


YGB_036_ShmuelA.mp3


YGB_037_ShmuelA.mp3


YGB_038_ShmuelA.mp3


YGB_039_ShmuelA.mp3


Nach - Shoftim - 259.58 MB



Shoftim_01.mp3


Shoftim_02.mp3


Shoftim_03.mp3


Shoftim_04.mp3


Shoftim_05.mp3


Shoftim_06.mp3


Shoftim_07.mp3


Shoftim_08.mp3


Shoftim_09.mp3


Shoftim_10.mp3


Shoftim_11.mp3


Shoftim_12.mp3


Shoftim_13.mp3


Shoftim_14.mp3


Shoftim_15.mp3


Shoftim_16.mp3


Shoftim_17.mp3


Shoftim_18.mp3


Shoftim_19.mp3


Shoftim_20.mp3


Shoftim_21.mp3


Shoftim_22.mp3


Shoftim_23.mp3


Shoftim_23a.mp3


Nach - Yonah - 37.46 MB



Yonah 1 of 4.mp3


Yonah 2 of 4.mp3


Yonah 3 of 4.mp3


Yonah 4 of 4.mp3


New from Yossi - 373.85 MB



REC097.mp3


V0019-tooscratchy.mp3


V0027.mp3


V0029.mp3


V0030.mp3


V0032.mp3


V0033.mp3


V0034.mp3


V0035.mp3


V0037.mp3


V0038.mp3


V0039.mp3


V0040.mp3


V0042.mp3


V0043.mp3


V0044.mp3


V0045.mp3


V0047.mp3


V0048.mp3


V0049.mp3


V0050.mp3


V0051.mp3


V0052.mp3


V0053.mp3


V0054.mp3


V0055.mp3


V0056.mp3


V0057.mp3


V0058.mp3


V0059.mp3


V0060.mp3


V0061.mp3


V0062.mp3


VOICE007.mp3


WS_10005.WMA


Pesach - The Fifth Cup - 25.27 MB



03-24-04_Pesach_5th-cup_mazel-tov.mp3


03-25-04_5-levels-of-soul_kabbalah.mp3


03-29-04_the-5th-cup.mp3


Prayer - Alienu - 48.35 MB



08-18-04_Alenu_how2daven_first-line_mastervs-creator_visualizations.mp3


08-19-04_alenu.mp3


09-08-04_Alenu_planets_control-from-heavinly-forces_hashkacka-prutus.mp3


09-22-04_Alienu_last-para_4-most-impt-words-in-judaism.mp3


Prayer - Bracha's of Shema - 36.63 MB



11-10-04_Bruchas-of-shemah_in-depth.mp3


12-01-04_bruchos-of-shema_living-G-d_achar-stry.mp3


12-22-04_bruchos_shel_shemah.mp3


Prayer - Modim - 47.41 MB



07-19-04_shemona-esre_thoughts-on-modim.mp3


07-20-04_modim.mp3


07-21-04_modim_ratzon_letters.mp3


07-22-04_modim-conclusion1of2.mp3


07-22-04_modim-conclusion2of2.mp3


Purim - Darshining HaMelechs - 60.62 MB



02-26-04_Purim-HaMelechs_party-as-a-test.mp3


02-29-04_Purim-HaMelechs_haman-jewish.mp3


03-01-04_Purim-HaMelechs.mp3


03-02-04_Purim-HaMelechs_esther-demon.mp3


03-03-04_Purim-HaMelechs_mazel-astrology_kabbalah-spheres.mp3


03-04-04_Purim-HaMelechs_faith_no-sad_singing_sing-stry.mp3


Rabbeinu Gershom's Decrees - 60.52 MB



03-09-04_R'Gershoms-decrees_Mail-wives-slaves.mp3


03-10-04_R'Gershoms-decrees_mail_right-2-privacy.mp3


03-11-04_R'Gershoms-decrees_mail_borrowers.mp3


03-15-04_R'Gershoms-decrees_mail-reading_gezera-overide-mitzvot.mp3


03-16-04_R'Gershoms-decrees_letters-after-death.mp3


03-17-04_R'Gershoms-decrees_int-property_coffee_mikvas.mp3


03-18-04_R'Gershoms-decrees_mikvas_reading-diaries_hitting-people.mp3


Techelis - 29.46 MB



03-21-04_Techailis_mesorah_turkeys-locusts_snail-and-fish.mp3


03-22-04_Techailis_Sbs-gem_eruv_falseing_Torah-women-groups.mp3


03-23-04_Techailis_pro-vs-con_snail-vs-fish_chemestry.mp3


The Nature of Sin - 177.40 MB



01-27-04_sin_adameve_avera-vs-chait.mp3


01-28-04_sin_naked-eq-smart.mp3


01-29-04_sin_arum-def_snake-def.mp3


02-01-04_sin_bad-truth_good-false.mp3


02-02-04_sin_snake-good-dumb-cunning.mp3


02-03-04_sin_naked_tree_soul-connect.mp3


02-04-04_sin_adam-eve_apple_snake.mp3


02-05-04_sin_punishment-4-1st-sinners.mp3


02-08-04_sin_mans-curse_lands-curse_idle-time.mp3


02-09-04_sin_bread_work-off-anger.mp3


02-10-04_sin_death_dirt_decay.mp3


02-11-04_sin_eve-rename.mp3


02-15-04_sin_adams-chuvah_coal.mp3


02-16-04_sin_flaming-sword_banishment.mp3


02-17-04_sin_sword_cherubim.mp3


02-18-04_sin_cain-abel_sacrifices_cannable-bugs.mp3


02-19-04_sin_tshuvah_after-life.mp3


02-23-04_sin_rule-over-sin_women-issues.mp3


02-24-04_sin_Malbim-on-Cain.mp3


02-25-04_sin_when-animals-attack.mp3


Torah Scripts - Ashuris vs. Ivris - 39.17 MB



01-11-04_Torah-Scripts_samaritons_tribes_scripts.mp3


01-13-04_Torah-Scripts_Torah-scroll-original.mp3


01-14-04_Torah-Scripts_diff-opinions - yerushalmi.mp3


01-15-04_Torah-Scripts_kabbalistic-concerns.mp3


01-13-05_one-mitzvah-lishmah_money4tshuvah_views-on-zeraavatala.mp3


01-19-04_l'olam_vs_dorv'dor.mp3


01-22-04_Melech_def-es-sela-va'ed_thghtwrds.mp3


03-14-04_renewal_reconstruct_drisha_kabbalah-centre_cults.mp3


03-30-04_Sbs-Gadol-Haftorah_Messiah-Prophecy-Chabad.mp3


05-03-04_concentration_wine-good_DRUGS-are-good 1of2.mp3


05-03-04_concentration_wine-good_DRUGS-are-good 2of2.mp3


05-04-04_idle-chatter_level-of-pleasure_recycling1of2.mp3


05-04-04_idle-chatter_level-of-pleasure_recycling2of2.mp3


05-05-04_pleasure_laughter_how-much-ok.mp3


05-12-04_chesed_good-heart.mp3


05-13-04_truth_trust-in-rabbis.mp3


05-20-04_chesed.mp3


05-24-04_being-good1of2.mp3


05-24-04_being-good2of2.mp3


05-30-05_Gan-Eden-pakistan_character-traits.mp3


05-30-05_RamBam-on-haggadata_avraham-shem-aver_purpose-of-things.mp3


06-10-04_smoking-asur-or-no1of2.mp3


06-10-04_smoking-asur-or-no2of2.mp3


06-21-04_3-types-of-mitzvahs_chabad_how-mitzvahs-work.mp3


06-22-04_plastic-surgery-mutar1of2.mp3


06-22-04_plastic-surgery-mutar2of2.mp3


06-28-05_RamBam-philosophy-elitism-why-have-morons.mp3


07-07-05_judge-favorably_eruv_chassidus_mussar.mp3


07-07-05_read-isnt-learning_abortion.mp3


07-07-05_souls-goyim-bodies-dogs-in-heaven-chassidid-food.mp3


07-08-04_prayer_shekeling_visualizing-word-haShem.mp3


07-13-04_Prayer-hashkafa.mp3


07-14-04_yellow-pink-twig-story_prayer.mp3


08-27-07_darshining-bruria-smichah-barkochba.mp3


09-08-04_Chayai-ha-masim_cloning_zelot_original-sin_feminism.mp3


09-17-07_Talmud-History_RYhuda-no-wr-mishnah_tos-br-artscroll.mp3


09-22-04_Yushka_cencered-gemaras_dreams_sorcery.mp3


10-01-03b.mp3


10-28-03b.mp3


10-29-03b.mp3


10-30-03b.mp3


10-31-04_Smichah_origins-types-today.mp3


11-02-03a.mp3


11-04-03.mp3


11-05-03a.mp3


11-09-03.mp3


11-10-03_timelessness.mp3


11-12-03_levels_of_rabbinic_mitzvahs_chochmah.mp3


11-13-03.mp3


11-17-03.mp3


11-18-03.mp3


11-20-03.mp3


11-22-04_13-principles.mp3


11-23-03.mp3


11-24-03.mp3


11-24-04_shemona-esre_evil-spirits_calander-contraversy.mp3


11-25-03.mp3


11-26-03.mp3


11-29-04_HaShems-essemce_deep-philosophy_abstract-vs-close.mp3


BadOrthodox-calcontr-agunah.mp3


Beards_razor_chassidim_tatoos_negia-hair-cuts.mp3


chabad_philosophy_rebbe_soul.mp3


Chanukah Torah Shebe'al Peh as the focus .ram


gan-eden_gehennum-more-than-1-yr.mp3


God Evidence and Emuna .ram


God Evidence and Emuna- The Book in the Desert .ram


Goyish Music.mp3


haggadata_making-of-gadl_tallis-gadol-4-kids-or-no.mp3


Halachah-aceptance-rambam_can-choose-kulas_education-woes.mp3


Hashkafah-rant_apikorsus-kares_rambam_evil-views.mp3


hist-halachah_Ari-zal2_tzimtzum_klipa_shattering-vessels-etc.mp3


hist-halachah_shuchan-aruch_angel_smicha_s-vs-a-paskening.mp3


History-israel-rebbes-geonim-1stsiddur.mp3


levels-of-holiness_kohen-r-better.mp3


loveURbrother_grudges.mp3


love-vs-fear-of-hashem_techeles-is-fear.mp3


Magic_real-or-no.mp3


Magic_superstition_astrology_chance-decisions.mp3


moshiach_chutzpah_ask-or-no-ask.mp3


origins-kabbalah-zohar_arizal_gilgul_tzimtzum.mp3


Overview-shas-comments_yeru-kadshim_minor-mesechtos.mp3


Overview-shas-pg-commenters_vilna-crum_geneology.mp3


papersmicha_shulchan-aruch_intellectualism_kim-lee.mp3


rambam-on-haggadata_science.mp3


sbs_circuit_microphone_timers.mp3


Ways2learnGemara-universal-acceptance-calander-prob.mp3


yoshon_chadash_hecshers_hist-of-shas_italy.mp3



The Html Directory by Camtech 2000