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Rabbi Akiva Dershowitz

Number of Entries : 404

Har Habayit and Beit Hamikdash

Har Habayit and Beit Hamikdash Question: Shalom, L'cvod Rav Osher Weiss Shlita, I would like to understand why many Rabbis prohibit people going up to Har Habyit even after they have gone to a Mikvah. According to the Rambam in Hilchot biyat hamikdash 3:4, even a dead person may be brought onto Har Habayit. Why do these same Rabbis reject over 200 Mitzvot that can only be done on Har Habyit? Where in our To ...

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Customs of Rosh Chodesh

Customs of Rosh Chodesh Question: 1. My wife gave my 5 yr old a hair cut last night Motzel Shabbos, the second night of Rosh Chodesh. She's been trying to have him get one for a while now and he finally acquiesced last night. I realized that perhaps it should not have been done Rosh Chodesh (besides for being Motzei Shabbos). How bad is that and is there anything to be concerned about? 2. This idea of not d ...

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School Notes Requiring Geniza

School Notes Requiring Geniza Question: Now that the Bais Yaakov and seminary year is over, can the Rov give specific guidelines as to how do determine if a page of notes requires geniza or not? Is it only pesukim or partial pesukim (3 words?) or is it any page of notes containing divrei torah? And if something does not require actual geniza, does it have to be wrapped or double-wrapped before disposal? And ...

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Kriyas Shema During White Nights

Kriyas Shema During White Nights Question: Shalom! In time of white nights in St. Petersburg when to recite kriyas shma? Gra, 72 min or chatzos? Answer: Waiting 72 minutes which is the shiur of Tzeis Hakochavim according to the stringent view of Rabbeinu Tam would be sufficient to fulfill the mitzvah Kriyas Shema. Being that we do not have the indicator of Tzeis Hakochavim - the emergence of three stars, we ...

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Accepting Shabbat with Community

Accepting Shabbat with Community Question: Shalom Rabbi! Here in St. Petersburg during the summer the day is very long. We have two minyanim in the city: a big one (big chabad shul) and our a small one. The big shul accepts shabbat early and we accept later. The question is when we have no minyan on shabbat are we obliged to accept shabbat as big shul or we can accept it as usual. Can we accept later than u ...

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Preventing Chilul Shabbat

Preventing Chilul Shabbat Question: Hello Rav, I have a question my father needs to fly to Israel to take care of urgent business and he needs to be in Israel by Sunday. He asked me to book a ticket for him for Saturday and the cheapest flight is 480 dollars but is leaving 1130 am. My father is not observant and he asked to book that ticket for him. I told him I can't and I convinced him to fly on the elal ...

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Follow up on Techeiles Question

Follow up on Techeiles Question Question: The article said that the person was told he "should" continue to wear techeiles. Based on what you replied, is the word "should" supposed to be more like "could"? Also, I read an article which says: " If Someone is convinced that Murex is the correct source of techeiles, should he wear this dye on his tzitzis? Although both Rav Chaim Kanievsky and Rav Asher Weiss c ...

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Hot Mikvah on Shabbos

Question: I try to go to the mikvah every day before davening, would i be allowed to go into a hot mikvah on shabbos? Answer: Yes, one may rely on the lenient opinions and the widespread custom of Chasidim and others to be tovel in a hot mikvah on Shabbos. This is based on the rationale that tevila for a mitzvah was not included in the prohibition of bathing on Shabbos [the opinion of the Korban Nesanel]. O ...

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Lifnei iver with Yom Tov replacement at work

Lifnei iver with Yom Tov replacement at work Question: My friend's wife had the following dilemma this past shavuos. She obviously couldn't be in the office over yomtov so she set up an automatic response on her email that I'll be out of the office, please contact Jackie. The problem is that Jackie is Jewish (non observant). Is this a problem of lifnei iver? Thanks! Answer: This situation should certainly b ...

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Har Habayis

Har Habayis Question: I have heard differing opinions on going up to Har Habayis. Some Rabbis hold that you should go up and make it very clear to the world that this is ours. Is it a problem to go up? Obviously, we must be relying upon the archaeologists who hold that the Kosel Hamaaravi is not part of 500x500 amos of Har Habayis. Can we rely on them? Is it a mitzva, perhaps, to stake our claim as the righ ...

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