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Chanifa – Flattery in Halacha
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(This should not be relied upon for practical halacha. When a question arises a Rabbi should be consulted.) “And you shall not corrupt the land in which you live, for the blood corrupts the land, and the blood which is shed in the land cannot be atoned for except through the blood of the one […]
385. Writing God’s Name
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Tefillin, Mezuzah v’Sefer Torah 1:16 When a sofer (scribe) dips his pen in the ink to write God’s Name, he should not start writing with one of the letters of the Name. Instead, he should start with the letter before that Name. If he forgot to write God’s Name altogether, he may insert it between […]
383. Who May Write Sifrei Torah, Tefillin and Mezuzos?
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Tefillin, Mezuzah v’Sefer Torah 1:12 It is a halacha l’Moshe miSinai (a rule communicated to Moses at Sinai) that a sefer Torah and a mezuzah may only be written on parchment with scored lines. Tefillin need not have scored lines because they are covered. Tefillin and mezuzos may be written without consulting an existing text […]
382. The Proper Intention
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Tefillin, Mezuzah v’Sefer Torah 1:10 Sifrei Torah, tefillin and mezuzos may not be written on the hide of non-kosher animals or birds. One may use the hides of any kosher animal or bird, even those that died without ritual slaughter or that were killed by predators. One may not write on the skin of a […]
381. The Side to Write On
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Tefillin, Mezuzah v’Sefer Torah 1:8 It is a halacha l’Moshe MiSinai that a sefer Torah is written on g’vil on the side where the hair had grown. Tefillin are written on klaf on the side of the flesh. A mezuzah is written on duchsustos on the side of the hair. If one writes on klaf […]
380. Three Types of Parchment
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Tefillin, Mezuzah v’Sefer Torah 1:6 There are three kinds of parchment: g’vil, klaf and duchsustos. First, the hair is removed from the hide of a domesticated or wild animal. It is salted and prepared with flour. Then resin and other substances are applied so that the hide will contract and harden. This kind of parchment […]
379. The Ink
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Tefillin, Mezuzah v’Sefer Torah 1:4 Ink is made by gathering ingredients like oils, tar, wax, etc., and kneading them with tree sap and a drop of honey. It is moistened, crushed into flat cakes, dried, then stored. When one wants to write with it, he soaks one of the cakes in gallnut juice or something […]