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Rabbi Akiva Dershowitz

Number of Entries : 515

submarine zmanim

Question: if one would be on a submarine and needed to daven would the din be the same as if he was flying in a plane and the zman is based on hwere he is or it goes based on the port time which is how they keep time on the boat. Answer: The zmanim would be based on his current location, as all zmanim in halacha, and not the time at the port from which they left. This would seem to be the zmanim at the surf ...

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IUD insertion,extraction and niddah

Question: Does the insertion or extraction of an IUD, which normally causes some bleeding, cause a woman to become a niddah? Can a non-religious doctor be relied upon if he says that the bleeding is not from the uterus? Answer: Yes, the bleeding that is caused by insertion and extraction of an IUD would make a woman a niddah. A non religious doctor may be relied upon to determine the source of the blood, ho ...

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Vestos – Onas Or Zarua

Question: I keep Or Zarua of course - but wonder whether it applies for 'all' vestos. We have several at the moment including a haflaga kavua of 26 but also a haflaga of 28. Question: Do we need to keep the Or Zarua for the additional haflaga sheyno kavua Shkoiuch Answer: The chumra of the Or Zarua is applied to a וסת שאינו קובע as well, so the 28 which is an אינו קבוע would also have the chumra of Or Zarua ...

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Kosher Cheeseburger

Question:Would a kashrus authority be permitted to grant kosher certification to a restaurant that wants to serve a vegetarian burger with vegan or milky cheese or real meat burger with vegetarian cheese? Many thanks Answer: Shulchan Aruch [Y:D 87:3] requires that a 'heker' be set in place when having almond milk with meat. A hechsher would have to assure that a proper 'heker' is set in to place, so that it ...

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Joint Kiddush for 2 sisters

Question: Is there an issue for two sisters both celebrating birth of a baby girl to have joint kiddush on account of אין מערבין שמחה בשמחה? Any other issues? Would it be better to have separate kiddushes? Thank you Answer There is no issue of אין מערבין שמחה בשמחה, and is only a matter of preference and personal  decision.  בשלחן ערוך [אבה"ע סימן סב' סע' ב'] מובא דברי הרמב"ם [אישות פ"י הל יג'] שמותר לו לאד ...

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music of Avodah Zara

Question: if a song was originally written for ע"ז is there a problem to sing a version of the song which has been translated into hebrew. any sources provided would be greatly appreciated Answer: If the song makes reference to Avodah Zarah it would be prohibited in any language. If it is just words that were used by others for Avoda Zara but have no indication they refer to Avodah Zara, and the words are t ...

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cohanim and trumah bzman hazeh

Question: In a recent shiur Harav mentioned it's been hundreds of years since we treated some cohanim as tahor due to the fact that just about everyone has been in a hospital at some point and thus tamei meit' interesting is: משנה ברורה סימן תנז ס"ק כב (כב) שאין מאכילין וכו' - שאין מחזיקים אותו ככהן ודאי דדלמא נתחללה אחת מאמותיו. ומ"מ לדינא דעת הרב כדעה הראשונה דנותנין לקטן או לגדול שטבל לקירויו [ש"ך ביו"ד ...

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apple watch for health/fall monitoring on shabbat

Question:K'vod haRav - My mother is an older widow who lives alone. We have urged her to get some sort of device that can be used to call emergency services in case of a fall or other issue, chas v'shalom. She recently bought an apple watch which performs this service and even can automatically call emergency services in case of a fall in case of unconsciousness, etc. However, because the watch is automatic ...

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cochlear implant – hearing device

Question:Someone has a cochleae implant which is a hearing device in which an electronic component is implanted in the inner ear and another part under the skin right behind the ear that reproduce the mechanism of hearing internally. There is an external part, which includes a transmitter and a battery, that hangs on the ear outside and part is stuck on the back of the head. The external part is taken off w ...

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Pesach- hesebah

Question: Likvod Harav Shlit"a, Seeing as we know that the understanding of some Rishonim that eating while leaning on the right is dangerous was based on a mistaken understanding of the location of the windpipe and foodpipe (kaneh and veshet), and we are therefore forced to explain that the sakanah was only said in regard to one lying on his back (as per Rashi Pesachim 108, and contra Rashbam) should a "le ...

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