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Kohanim: Airplane Travel
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Dead bodies are routinely flown in the baggage compartments on passenger flights for burial in distant places. Since it is considered very worthwhile and meritorious to be buried in the Land of Israel, this is an especially frequent occurrence on El Al flights. Indeed, over 65 percent of all El Al flights have dead bodies […]
Airplane Travel
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Although it is not widely known, there is a view among halachic authorities that Tefillat Haderech is not recited for airplane travel.[1] This is based on the Talmudic teaching that air travel is something associated exclusively with birds and not with people.[2] According to this approach, the reason Tefillat Haderech is not recited when flying […]
Publicizing the Donors
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Is it proper to publicize the names of donors? The practice of publicizing the names of those who make donations for charitable causes is quite ancient. The Talmud relates that it was publicized that Yosef Ben Yo’ezer made a generous donation to the Beit Hamikdash.[1] In fact, the famous “Nicanor Gate” of the Beit Hamikdash […]
Knock Before Entering!
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Our sages teach that one should not enter any home, even one’s own, without knocking first. As Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai teaches: “There are four things that God hates that I also don’t like…a person who enters his own home suddenly without knocking, and it goes without saying, one who enters his neighbor’s house without […]
Elo-ah
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Most of us don’t pronounce one of the names of God, correctly. It’s not “Eloha.” It’s “Elo-ah,” or if you want to be even more precise, it’s “Elo-wah.” It’s that simple. I know. I might have just made some readers realize that they have gone ten, twenty, or thirty years pronouncing God’s name incorrectly. Maybe […]
Gum: Should a Blessing Be Recited?
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There is a difference of opinion on whether a blessing must be recited before chewing gum. Actually, it seems to be somewhat obvious that a blessing should be recited, as it says in Shulchan Aruch, “One recites shehakol on sugar, and shehakol is also recited when sucking sweet sticks.”[1] It appears that gum fits nicely […]