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Rabbi Akiva Dershowitz

Number of Entries : 493

Using others Wi-Fi connection

Question: May one use his Neighbors Wi-Fi connection: 1. If it is unprotected (with no password)? 2. If it is protected (with a password)? Answer: One may not use another's wifi connection without his permission, whether it is secured or not. Today it is left unprotected only as an oversight or someone who is not informed how to properly protect his connection. Even with permission it is questionable if thi ...

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Buddhist Hospice

Question: לכבוד מרן שליט׳א A Jewish patient at the end of his life is put onto palliative care. This patient lives in an area in Hong Kong where the nearest hospice is a Buddhist one and where doctors practice with Buddhist philosophy being central to the patient care. Is the patient allowed to use the services of this hospice even though there may be a possibility that some of the healthcare professionals ...

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College Graduation

Question: I am planning on graduating college soon, and there is a ceremony at the end which has all of the graduates wearing the cap and gown. Is it permissible to wear either of these items? I saw online that it seems as though it was decided that they were to be worn as they were the garb of the church clergymen, who taught many of the courses and were supposed to symbolize being a high class and intelle ...

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מניעת הריון ע״י גלולות

Question: הרב כתב כאן באחת התשובות לאחר שביאר כל הסוגיא של ג׳ נשים משמשות במוך, להתיר לכל הנשים העוס׳ במניעת הריון לשמש בפתילות או משחה שהורג את הזרע האם עדיף למנוע הריון בגלולות או שלדעתו אין כ״כ הבדל בין פתילות לגלולות כי מצד אחד יש שמקילים הרבה בפתילות כשיש כל צורך אפילו צורך קצת וגם מצד חשש דימומים, ומצד שני יש שהחמירו בפתילות מכמה טעמים מה היא דעת הרב בזה ? האם סדר העדיפות בדרך כלל הוא כזה ? 1. גלולות ...

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Wearing a hat during Tefillah and outdoors

Question: I was wondering if nowadays one is obligated to wear a hat during Tefillah. The Chayei Adam's reasoning that we dress this way in the street doesn't seem applicable. However, does the reason of standing before Odom Choshuv with a hat apply if one dresses this way before Gedolim, or is it only before Royalty? The Shu"t Divrei Yatziv is quoted as saying that one is obligated based on the Shulchan Ar ...

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I-Phone Muktzah Status

Question: What type of muktza is an I-phone? Answer: The status of an I-phone is a kli shemelachto l'issur. While they are valuable items which one is generally careful with, they do not have the status of chesaron kis, as they are handled and transported normally. They are not kept in a specific place for safekeeping and would be used to hold down something as a paperweight or similar uses. This would cert ...

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Eating Disorder and Fasting

Question: A woman with a history of anorexia says that fasting on Yom Kippur can bring on a set of consecutive days of fasting that is very detrimental to her health. What should she do for fast days? Thank you. Answer: She needs to be professionally assessed by her doctor and then in consultation with a Rav determine if fasting poses a risk of relapse as you describe. If there is a fair chance it could cau ...

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Tankless Water Heater on Yom Tov

Question: שלום וברכה, What does the Rav say about using a tankless hot water heater on Yom Tov? Our house has one installed and we have not used the hot water on Yom Tov. Thank you so much Answer: Since in such systems opening the hot water immediately and directly ignites the fire to heat the water, this may not be used on Yom Tov. It is prohibited to start a new fire on Yom Tov. ...

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Collecting tzedaka

Question: L'Chvod Harav Shlit"a, There is a young man who had a religious upbringing but has long since gone off the derech r"l including driving on Shabbos ect. He has been living this lifestyle since he was a teenager (perhaps 14) and is now in his mid twenties. the man is a computer programmer but several months ago he has lost his job and has been sick on bed rest for several months. Due to the lack of ...

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yoetzet halacha

Question: I saw that someone asked the Rav about using an app for Maros. This caused me to think about other new phenomenons which people use to ask their Tahars Hamishpacha Shailos. What about asking a Yoetzet? I know the Gemara does discuss a woman who would Pasken regarding Maros. Is there anything wrong with turning to a woman for help in this area if a person is more comfortable doing so? Answer: The R ...

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