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Negiah B’Ervah

Question: How does one reconcile the description of the chasid shoteh as one who doesn't rescue a woman drowning with the prohibition of אביזרייהו דעריות? Answer: The prohibition of עריות is limited to an instance were the contact is of affectionate nature. Only then is this considered אבזרייהו דעריות [according to the Rambam]. Touch which has no affection according to some Achronim is an איסור דרבנן while ...

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Buying Seforim with Maaser money

Question: Can one use maaser money to buy seforim that one will use to prepare shiurim? Kol tuv Answer: The poskim bring purchsing seforim as a vaild use for maaser money. However this is only if he otherwise would not have bought the sefer with his own money. In addition he has to write in the sefer that the sefer is from maaser money, and should be made available to others to use as well. Seforim which wi ...

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Onas Ohr Zarua

Question: Sholom Would it be possible to ask the Rav`s opinion with regards to Onas Ohr Zarua. These are my questions: 1. The Poskim agree that Leil Tevilla and Bo/ Yotzei min haderech one can be meikil However, the Chazon Ish was also meikil "be`es hatzorech" - what was he referring to and does the Rav pasken that way too? 2. Some poskim seem to be mattir when one does a bedikkah instead. Is that acceptabl ...

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Swiss Army Emblem

Question: Shalom What is the status of the Red Cross or the cross that appears on the Swiss flag and any consumer products like Swiss army knifes or merchandiser made by Wenger? Is it assur to own items with that symbol? Do I need to remove them from articles I already bought? May I not use the plus sign as used in America? Thanks Answer: It is prohibited to derive any benefit from something which was worsh ...

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Minimum Size of Talis Katan

Question: My teenage son refuses to wear regular sized tzitzis, as they cause him discomfort, what is the most meikal shitta in the poskim of how small tzitzis can be? Answer: Shulchan Aruch in O:C 16:1 codifies that the minimum size of a talis katan is a garment which could cover the head and most of the body of a child [the age of nine - mishna brura]. The Rama adds that this is on condition that the one ...

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Mezuzah for Boiler Room

Question: Does my boiler room in the attached photo need a mezuza? It's 7 ft deep x 6 ft wide, and as you can see much of that space is taken up by the boiler itself and the sink in the room. There is no door on the room. Answer: This size room actually has the minimum required size for a room to require a mezuza, 4x4 amos. The items in this room do not diminsh the halachic size of the room, and therefore i ...

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Removing Mezuzos

Question: Hi, I am moving out of a basement apartment I rented from a Jew [non religious]. He will be now renting it to a non – Jew for the purpose of storage and not to live in it. May I remove the mezuzos when I leave or is it always forbidden to remove mezuzos. Thanks for your help. Answer: When it is clear that after you a non- Jew will be moving in, you may and in fact should remove the mezuzos before ...

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Size of kesem

Question: 1. A kessem which has two places o dam (which individually do not have a size o a griss but together they do) which are connected with a Mareh kosher - is it metameh or not? Answer: A kesem which has two parts of blood that are each less than a gris, but are joined together by a mareh tahor, are considered one kesem. Therefore if there is a gris of blood in total, the kesem is tameh. If it is clea ...

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Pidyon Ha-Ben for Child Born from Sperm Donation

Question: I am a single woman, and I recently gave birth to a firstborn child born from a sperm donation (there were no previous children and no miscarriages). Can I perform the Pidyon Ha-Ben ceremony? Should my father or brothers do it? If there is no obligation, must the boy himself redeem himself after he grows up? Answer: A child born from a sperm donation is obligated in Pidyon Ha-Ben like every Jewish ...

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Yichud with Adopted Children

Question: What is the halachah concerning yichud with adopted children? Answer: According to most authorities one must be stringent and forbid yichud with adopted children. However, if a keys can be given to a number of household members, and they indeed "drop in unexpectedly" on occasion, this is enough to permit the yichud.   מקורות והרחבת הדברים: הלבוש [אבן העזר סי' כב סעי' א] כתב שהטעם שאין איסור י ...

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