Sunday, May 31, 2015
Friday, May 29, 2015
Failing Children and Failing Families - New Telephone Conference May 31 Sunday 9:30 PM details below
This Sunday night telephone conference has different dial-up and code numbers than our Wed night telephone conference. The Wed night 9:30 program continues regarding halacha of Even Hoezer. But the Sunday conference is a new topic with new dial and code numbers. It is about failing children and failing families.
The new Sunday 9:30 program beginning May 31 is about failing children and failing families. Leading educators have said that each year things get worse. And yet, nobody is doing much about it. A few people are doing things or have good ideas how to improve things, and we want people to know the problems and how to avoid them.
To join the Sunday night at 9:30 PM telephone conference dial 641-715-3580 then enter code 198771#
The regular Wed 9:30 program
Dial 605-562-3130 then code 411161#
Why are we making this program for failing children?
A leading educator told me that he has taught school about thirty years. And every year more and more children are unable to succeed in school and may face a life of problems chas vishalom. Originally 2 out of 25 children had problems succeeding in school, and now the number has shot up close to triple that amount. Let us try to understand the problem and see how to improve things.
Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Audio of Shiur#9 - What is the Authority Behind a Beth DIn?
Click below for audio at http://torahtimes.com/2015/05/28/audio-shiur9-authority-of-beth-din/
Click below for audio at http://torahtimes.com/2015/05/28/audio-shiur9-authority-of-beth-din/
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Telephone conference shiur #9 What Beth Din may Coerce a GET? May 27 9:30 PM call 605-562-3130 add code 411161#
Shiur #9 – What Beth Din is Empowered to Coerce a GET?
1. We have previously discussed when a Beth Din may coerce a GET. Now we want to go into the power of any Beth Din, how they are authorized by the Torah to make a coerced GET.
2. Gemora Gittin 88b: “Abayeh found Rav Yosef sitting and coercing husbands to divorce their wives with a GET. He said to him, ‘But we are plain people [meaning the rabbis in Babylonia did not get the ancient Semicha and therefore are not MUMCHIM.] Rashi explains that in those days rabbis in Israel did receive the ancient Semicha that began with Moshe Rabbeinu and were therefore authorized by the Torah to fulfill all judicial functions necessary such as coercing a GET when appropriate. But Rav Yosef was in Babylonia, and the rabbis there did not receive this Semicha. So by whose authority did Rav Yosef coerce a GET?
3. Rav Yosef replied, “We are messengers of the rabbis who got Semicha.”
4. Tosfose there D”H bimilso dishechicha explains, “We do the work assigned to us by the earlier generations [who had Semicha] in Israel.”
5. We see from this that the entire capacity to coerce a GET and fulfill other functions of a dayan today is because we received permission to do this from earlier generations in Israel who had semicha.
6. Furthermore, the gemora says that we are not authorized by the early generations of Semuchim to fulfill the functions of a Torah Dayan in all things, only in those things that are common. But why is this? Why did the earlier generations grant permission for us to fulfill the will of the Torah with Semicha only with what is common to us?
7. Perhaps this itself that the permission is not total reminds us that our status is not that of real Semuchim. We may only function according to the command of the earlier Semuchim. The earlier generations of Semuchim were the greatest of their time. And they passed on this Semicha to Babylonia and other countries who had no Semicha only if the rabbis there were very prominent scholars, the cream of the rabbinate. This means that today coercing a husband is a right only of the greatest rabbis. Not long ago a letter from the major Gedolim in Israel said the same thing. But their letter was a response to coerced Gittin from people who are not true scholars or who differ with the Shulchan Aruch. But besides these considerations, we may also assume that the permission given by earlier Musmochim applied only to great rabbis. If so, those who are not great and coerce a GET have made an invalid GET.
8. In fact, see the Tosfose HaRid on the gemora above Gittin 88. He deduces from Bovo Basro that coercing to divorce a wife is only effective because “it is a mitzvah to obey the sages.” Obviously, the power of coercion is only given to such rabbis who are considered by everyone, even one who has to be beaten to fulfill the Torah, as authorities. The Beth Din not universally recognized as great sages, may produce invalid Gittin. Did the earlier semuchim, the greatest rabbis, give permission for plain rabbis to fulfill the roll previously given only to the greatest rabbis? Probably not.
9. Chasam Sofer in his teshuvose on Even Hoezer in two places 28 and 116 says that if the husband knows that two authorities differ whether or not the husband should be beaten, and then the husband is beaten and says, “I want the GET” because of that beating, the GET the husband gives is invalid by the Torah. This is because the husband only gives a proper GET under a beating when he accepts the rabbis as the true authorities to speak for the Torah. But if he knows there are those who disagree with the Beth Din that orders coercion, he does not accept them or their coercion and the GET is invalid, and the children born from it are mamzerim.
10. A letter from Israeli gedolim, Reb Chaim Kanievsky, Reb Nissim Karelitz, Reb Nosson Kupshitz, Reb Chaim Mahyer HaLevi Wosner, and the late Gaon Rav Shmuel HaLevi Wosner published in the book Mishpetei Yisroel, together with other very prominent signers, warns that today there are rabbinic courts that make invalid Gittin, and that everyone must beware of marrying a woman with a GET from them.
11.. Posek HaDor HaGaon Rav Yosef Shalom Elyashev zt”l told me that any Beth Din that flouts the Shulchan Aruch that he takes away from them “Chezkas Beth Din.” They lose the status of a Beth Din. It is highly possible that this is not just a decree of today’s rabbis to protect against some rabbis who don’t know the halacha properly. It is based upon the permission granted the generations after Semicha to practice coercions of Gittin, etc. The earlier Semuchim did not want everyone coercing Gittin, only those who are the senior rabbis of the generation, or who work with the permission of the senior rabbis of the generation.
12. The process of our doing the Dayan work entrusted to us by the earlier Semuchim, how does it work? Nesivose in Choshen Mishpot 1:1 says that the Torah gave the rabbis the power to give latter generations the capacity of Dayanuse, and the Torah allowed the rabbis, the earlier ones, to decide what kind of things can be adjudicated in latter generations. Thus, the work of the latter rabbis is valid by the Torah.
13. The Nesivose says that the Ramban and the Rashbo disagree and consider the Dayanuse done today has no base in the Torah, as we are not Semuchim. But it is valid by the power of the rabbonon. However, if the greatest rabbis in the world such as Rav Wosner zt”l and others of his class wrote a letter forbidding ordinary rabbis to force a GET, perhaps the original permission for latter rabbis to give a GET is violated because the original permission was only for great rabbis to make coercions.
14. Tosfose Sandhedrin 2b bottom of page says that although the Torah gave permission for judges to adjudicate it was necessary for the Torah to bring another passage to prove that judges can coerce Gittin. The Ketsose Choshen Mishpot 3 says that permission to coerce was given only to the seventy sages who together with Moshe controlled the Jewish people. Thus, to coerce we need very senior rabbis, the greatest in the world, they or their express permission.
15. In New York State a law was passed to force a husband to give a GET when the marriage is over. Such a GET forced by the government is invalid. Threats to the husband to take away money, custody of his children, jail, humiliation, produces an invalid GET. A woman married with an invalid GET has children that are possibly mamzerim.
16. In the next generation many children will be born from such Gittin and may be mamzerim. Some rabbis such as the ones who made the GET will consider them fine, and others, such as the above Gedolim, will consider them likely to be mamzerim. Klal Yisroel will be split in two.
17. If anyone has a problem with a GET, such as those who got a get from Epstein, a flagrant violator of the most basic teachings of the Shulchan Aruch, should not remarry with such a GET, and should contact people who can attempt to deal with the situation.
Basically, such people must immediately get a GET from a respected Beth Din.
18. If they cannot get another GET they must contact a respected Beth Din to see what can be done. Sometimes, a Beth Din can determine that the Sofer and the Witnesses were kosher people and that the GET was kosher, even if it was done in a Beth Din of those who disagree with the Shulchan Aruch.
19. The Beth Din must determine the status of the mother and the status of the children born from the invalid GET. Are the children mamzerim? It is easier to help the children than the mother. A doubtful mamzer is much less of a sin than a doubtful wife, and a doubt of a mamzer is different than other Torah doubts. See Sheb Shematso I:1. But only a prominent Beth Din should be involved with this. Who would marry the woman or her children if a prominent Beth Din did not approve of their marrying?
20. The Beth Din may determine that despite being forced the husband decided to give a GET willingly. See Chazon Ish Even Hoezer Gittin 99:3 that if a husband is forced but finally decides on his own and not because of the coercion to give a GET it is kosher. But an experienced Beth Din must rule on this.
The laws of GET Meusoh are complex and there are various opinions. This requires a prominent Beth Din.
Wednesday, May 20, 2015
Audio of Shiur 8 - More on Negating a Marriage because of Blemishes is at www.torahtimes.com. You can go there and select the audio's window on the top line or click the link below.
Audio of Shiur 8 - More on Negating a Marriage because of Blemishes
Audio of Shiur 8 - More on Negating a Marriage because of Blemishes
Tuesday, May 19, 2015
Shiur #8 Telephone Conference – More on Negation of Marriage because of a Blemish
Wed May 20 9:30 PM – Call 605-562-3130 then enter code 411161#
1. We discussed in Shiur #7 last week that HaGaon Reb Moshe Feinstein is lenient but many Gedolim are strict about whether a major blemish negates a marriage. Today we want to look into this further.
2. Gemora Kesubose 57b - A woman is an Aruso, married to a man, but stays in her father’s house until the Chupa, when she becomes a NISUO, fully married. If it is discovered that the Arusa has a major blemish, the marriage is negated. See Rashi there.
3. This would seem to be a proof to Reb Moshe that a serious blemish can negate a marriage. However, this is only about an Arusa, but perhaps once someone has Chupah the conditions for negating marriage are themselves negated, as we discussed last week at length. See Shulchan Aruch EH 38:35,36 and Yevomose 107. A pious Jew does not want to have relations with a woman without marriage, and he cancels his conditions.
4. Tosfose Kesubose 72b ד"ה על מנת writes that even though the gemora says that a blemish can negate the marriage, the gemora in Kesubose 73b brings two opinions. One is that the woman’s marriage is negated and turns into a doubtful marriage, and she needs a GET. The other opinion is that the Torah permits her, but the rabbis require a GET. The Rosh 72b says that the opinion that it is a doubt is a sin diorayso to remarry without a GET and Tosfose Kesubos 72b ד:ה על מנת says the same thing.
5. If so, a marriage negated can still require a GET. Bais HaLevi and Ain Yitschok disagree with Reb Moshe as he quotes in Igeres Moshe EH I:79:1. Ayin Yitschok of the Kovneh Rov I:34:7:44 quotes those who forbid her remarriage as the Chavass Yoir, Besomim Rosh, Rashbatz and Shevuse Yaacov. Thus, the gemora and the many authorities who forbid the remarriage based on a blemish would prevent a woman from remarrying even if her husband has a major blemish, even if there is a possibility that the marriage is negated, as is taught in Kesubose 73b.
6. The gemora Kesubose 73b says that a woman who has a blemish of nedorim that a husband doesn’t tolerate, and therefore by the Torah the marriage is negated as the husband did not know this before he married her, nonetheless, Rabo holds that she needs a GET by rabbinical law. Rovo says that there is a doubt in the Torah itself if she needs a GET in such a case. Thus, even if the marriage is blemished, she needs a GET.
7. Reb Yosef ben Leib considered the rebbe of the Bais Yosef writes in volume II:19:3 that the custom of rabbis is when rabbis argue about if a woman can remarry that even if a majority of rabbis permit her to remarry, if a minority forbid it, we are stringent and the woman cannot remarry. In a case of a person with a blemish, the majority of rabbis forbid a woman to remarry, and in that case, surely the woman has a problem remarrying.
8. Tosfose there in Kesubose 72b says that some blemishes require a GET and some do not. Tosfose mentions the blemish of EILENUSE [whereby a woman can have biah but cannot have children, as she has a blemish in her entire system and is not like other women] does not need a GET. But other blemishes do not free the woman without a GET.
9. Some rishonim hold that even when the husband did not know that she is an Eilunes, and he discovers that she is, even though this is a serious blemish, she needs a GET.
10. Rambam Ishuse 4:10 – If one makes kiddushin whether the man is a Serise Chamo or Seris Odom, and so with an Eilenuse who is married with Kiddushin [Erusin] these are complete marriages [the couple is married by Torah law].
11. Magid Mishneh quotes on the above Rambam that Rabbeinu Tam ruled that an Eilunes who was not known to be one and married with Erusin, that she needs a GET.
12. Rambam Ishus 24:2 “One who marries a woman and does not know her blemish and she turns out to be an Eilunes, she does not get a Kesubo nor does she get the Conditions of a Kesubo, but extra gifts from the husband to his wife she does keep.”
13. Rambam ISHUS 7:8 One who makes kiddushin [erusin] to a woman, and it is discovered that she has a blemish that render a woman unfit or one of the oaths that she made renders her unfit, and afterwards he discovers that she has this blemish, the marriage is a doubt if it is negated [because he did not make a clear condition].”
14. From this we see that if the husband or wife did not make a clear condition and then it is discovered that they have a bad blemish, the marriage is a doubt, maybe it is negated, maybe not, and she needs a GET and without it she cannot marry.
15. The Magid Mishneh explains that the Rambam paskens like Rovo that if it is discovered after the Kiddushin that the woman has a bad blemish it is a doubt and she requires a GET to remarry. The gemora there says clearly that she needs a GET if no specific condition was made to negate the marriage if she had this problem.
16. This again is a proof that even in serious blemishes we don’t allow the woman to remarry without a GET, and many poskim hold like that, not like Reb Moshe.
17. Rambam rules Ishuse 7:23 that if a man made a condition in Erusin that he did not want a wife with certain blemishes, and the wife had them, the marriage is negated. But if afterwards he married her with Chupah or took her to his house and they were together and then he did not make a condition, the woman is married and she needs a GET. Thus, even if there is proof that Erusin is negated by a blemish, if there is Nisuin the conditions may be negated and the woman needs a GET. Thus all people who want to negate a marriage because of a blemish, if they did not make a clear condition before the Chupa, they are married and the wife needs a GET. How does this agree with Reb Moshe’s lenient negation of marriages, that seem to mean even if they were married a few years and maybe even if they had children, the marriage is negated?
18. The Meiri Kesubose 72b D “H “One who marries a woman, etc.” says that when a man marries a woman who has the blemishes of oaths that men don’t tolerate, and he did not know about them, the marriage is negated and no GET is needed. This is a proof to Reb Moshe that a strong blemish negates the marriage.
19. Reb Moshe and Chelkas Mechokake EH 39:9 say that the woman must immediately leave the marriage if she discovers a major blemish in the husband. But how do we know that she did leave immediately?
20. Thus, the issue of a blemish to negate a marriage has various aspects and opinions. The majority who discuss this do not permit the woman to remarry without a GET. Then we have the opinion of Rosfose Kesubose 72b that it may depend on the level of blemish. If so, who can determine what the thoughts of Chazal were in considering this?
21. The latest assaults on Shulchan Aruch by people who are inventing new ways to free a married woman based on some invention in defiance of the Shulchan Aruch, are far away from the ideas taught here.
Wednesday, May 13, 2015
Click on the link below to get to torahtimes.com and on top of the windows is one that is about Negation of Marriage without a GET?
Audio of tele-conference #7 Negation of Marriage without a GET?
Audio of tele-conference #7 Negation of Marriage without a GET?
Monday, May 11, 2015
Telephone Conference Shiur #7 - Negating a Marriage without a GET
Shiur on Wednesday night 9:30 May 13 – Call 605-562-3130 then enter code 411161#
1. HaGaon Reb Moshe Feinstein in EH IV:52 writes that if a woman marries and finds out that the husband has a great defect, that the marriage can be negated without a GET. Cases are that the husband cannot have BIAH, or the husband is a Shoteh.
2. In EH IV:113 Reb Moshe permits the wife to remarry if her husband is discovered to be strongly involved in homosexuality. But this only applies if the wife, immediately upon learning about her husband’s problem left him and did not return.
3. However, “If it is impossible to get a GET from him we permit her to remarry, but if it is possible to get a GET from him we must do everything possible to get the GET.”
4. But why is there such a need to get a GET that everything possible, such as paying large sums of money, must be invoked? And the answer is, that it is extremely rare to find a Rov who permits a married woman to remarry without a GET, and even Reb Moshe commands us to get a GET at any cost, if possible
5. Also, Reb Moshe in EH I:79:1 brings from the Beis HaLevi Simon 3 and the Kovneh Rov, AIN YITSCHOK 24:6 and BIARE YITSCHOK 4:3, Gedolei hador in the time of the Chofetz Chaim who were are not sure that the marriage is negated by a great Mum or blemish.
6. The Kovneh Rov brings in AYIN YITSCHOK I:EH 24:7:44 that some authorities feel that there is a doubt whether if there is a great defect the marriage is negated: Chavass Yoir, the Besomim Rosh, Rashbatz and Shevuse Yaacov did not want to permit remarriage without a GET. If so many great authorities were not sure of the halacha with a great blemish and refuse to permit the wife to remarry, Reb Moshe took upon himself to permit this. But this does not mean that we do this as we see that the majority of the great authorities from previous generations did not consider the woman free to remarry.
7. Reb Yosef ben Leib, considered by some the rebbe of Rebbe Yosef Karo, writes in volume two IV:19:3, Regarding a woman remarrying when she may be forbidden to do this, we are stringent and forbid this, even if most authorities permit it.” What if most or all other authorities forbid it? That is the situation with Reb Moshe’s opinion about permitting a woman to remarry when nobody agrees with him. But there is another problem with this heter.
8. Reb Moshe himself says that the person who wants to cancel the marriage can only do so when the great blemish is discovered and immediately, without delay, the person leaves the house and has nothing to do with the blemished person. This is found in Chelkas Mechokake EH 39:9.
9. My question is: Let us assume that a blemish does permit a woman to be free of the marriage. But who knows that the wife immediately fled from the husband? Of course, now, hours or days or weeks later, she may have decided to leave. But if she delayed even by a small span of time, she is not free. And is it not likely that the woman was in a great state of shock and struggled to think things over. Leave? Maybe yes, maybe not. Perhaps being alone is worse. What would people say? Who will support me? What will the children say? How will the children ever marry if people know that their father was an active homosexual? What if the wife wants to straighten out her bank account that has large sums that if she has a few days can be in her favor, but if she just runs away, she may lose everything? What is the halacha about that? Who takes the responsibility to say it is not a problem?
10. Another problem is one I learned the hard way. I once needed a GET from somebody who would not allow a rabbi into his office. Reb Moshe had a teshuva permitting making the GET. A rabbi agreed to do the GET on the condition that he personally not give a document that the woman was properly divorced. Rather, he would write that according to Reb Moshe the GET was kosher. At that, I called Reb Moshe’s gabei and was told, “Just because it says that in the Teshuva sefer, does that mean that we do it?” I was stunned and just hung up. I called up Reb Aivigder Miller zt”l who told me, “Reb Moshe became stricter later in life and regretted some decisions he had made in earlier times. When the world was a complete disaster Reb Moshe felt he had to be very lenient. But as the word got frumer Reb Moshe pulled back.
11. If so, who says that anyone should do what Reb Moshe permits in this case when all rabbonim disagree with him?
12. I heard from the assistant to Rav Henkin, Rabbi Margolin, a similar thing. We used to doven in the same shull and we would talk. He told me that he constantly asked Rav Henkin to put out his teshuvose, because he was the posek hador in America before Reb Moshe, and he had a huge amount of teshuvose. But Rav Henkin refused. He felt that his teshuvose were for a lost generation, and he hoped that better times would come when his teshuvose were not appropriate.
13. If so, when we find an incredible chidush from Reb Moshe, who says something that nobody else in the world accepts, and what the greatest authorities discuss in depth and reject Reb Moshe’s leniency, who can go release a woman from a marriage and have her remarry and have children after that? Probably, there is a serious doubt if Reb Moshe himself would continue to hold this opinion. And even if he does maintain his leniency, how can we permit a woman to remarry when all of the great rabbis who discussed this refused to permit her to remarry? And how do we know that she really left immediately when finding out the problem with the husband?
14. Another problem. A marriage made with the understanding that it will only be viable if such and such are done. Or a marriage that is only viable if a person does not have a certain problem. If the condition is not fulfilled do we cancel the marriage? If the marriage was made with ERUSIN alone, only giving a ring, for instance, and the condition is not fulfilled, the marriage is off. But if the couple had CHUPAH or intimacy, the condition may be cancelled. See Shulchan Aruch EH 38:35.
15. “One who makes ERUSIN with a condition [that cancels the marriage if the condition is not fulfilled], but has relations with his wife without mentioning the condition, [and the condition is not fulfilled seemingly canceling the marriage] she needs a GET [meaning she is married despite the condition that cancelled the marriage] even though the condition was not fulfilled. We suspect that he negated the condition when he had relations with her or brought her into his home. Ramo – And if somebody else marries her she needs a GET from both of them.” We see from this that even when somebody says he will marry only if a certain condition is fulfilled, and the condition is not fulfilled, if he has relations or CHUPAH with his wife, we fear that he negated his conditions. This could be because “nobody wants to have marital relations that are zenuse.” See also EH 38:36 at the end that she is married after the intimacy and he must give her a KESUBO even if the condition for the marriage is not fulfilled.
16. Thus although if somebody makes a condition to marry and the condition is not fulfilled the marriage is off, that only applies to ERUSIN, without CHUPAH or BIAH. But if somebody makes a condition that only with this condition is there a marriage and then there is CHUPAH or intimacy, there is a serious question if the condition is negated by the CHUPAH or intimacy. Because once a person has CHUPAH or intimacy and still presses the condition, the marriage is off. And the CHUPAH and intimacy were outside of a marriage, or Zenuse. Therefore, it is quite possible that any condition made for ERUSIN is negated upon CHUPAH or intimacy. But a woman married with CHUPAH or intimacy, even if we would normally assume that no man or woman would accept such a blemish in marriage, this is only prior to CHUPAH. But once there is CHUPAH conditions are negated so that the intimacy is not Zenuse. If so, in all cases where the marriage is negated because of a MUM or serious problem, once there was CHUPAH it is possible that the marriage is still viable to prevent BIAS ZENUSE.
17. See Yevomose 107 “Nobody makes his intimacy Zenuse” and “a marriage made with certain conditions, those conditions are negated when the couple is together” means basically that the marriage with CHUPAH survives the requirement of conditions. This is a complicated topic but surely it is not a simple thing to free a woman who is married to somebody who has a great blemish MUM, especially as other than Reb Moshe nobody permits it, and everyone forbids it. And, as I mentioned earlier, Reb Moshe’s teshuvose often contain material that he personally refused to permit in later years. Perhaps this is one of them.
18. It is a tragedy that in Philadelphia we have Roshei Yeshiva who encourage a woman to remarry without a GET, even though I am going to publicize that her remarriage is AISHESS ISH and her children from the second “husband” are mamzerim. Whoever permits this married woman to remarry without a GET deserves NIDUI.
Thursday, May 7, 2015
Audio file from Rabbi Dovid E. Eidensohn on the strangest teaching in the Talmud and Medrash, G-d's confrontation with the Moon at Creation.
Click on the link below to go to torahtimes.com, and then click on audio file about Moon.
Audio File on Diminishing the Moon
Click on the link below to go to torahtimes.com, and then click on audio file about Moon.
Audio File on Diminishing the Moon
Tuesday, May 5, 2015
Telephone Shiur #6 Wed night 9:30 PM 5/6/15 Call 605-562-3130 then code 411161#
Marriage Recognized and Not Recognized by the Torah
Rabbi Dovid E. Eidensohn/845-578-1917
1. What kind of marriage is recognized by the Torah?
2. When a Jew gives a ring or valuable object to a Jewish woman and says “you are mekudeshes to me” or a similar phrase, the woman is married to the man. EH 27:1. Marriage can also be created by giving a document of marriage to the woman and she accepts it, and it says that she is mekudeshes to the man who gave her the document EH 31:1. Also, if the husband has marital relations with a Jewish woman with intent to marry they are married EH33:1. Two Orthodox witnesses must witness any act of Kiddushin EH 27:2; 31:1; 33:1.
3. If witnesses know that a Jew and a Jewess are together and having marital relations, and we know that they were once married but now are divorced, we assume that their being together in front of witnesses or with the knowledge of kosher witnesses is an act of marriage and they are married EH 149:5.
4. But if the two were not originally married and then divorced, we assume that the two intended not marriage but Zenuse and there is no marriage. Shulchan Aruch Even Hoezer 149:5.
5. If a husband and wife are together in a community where marriage is often not established by Torah ritual but by governmental or social style, and the people probably consider themselves married, either because they are ignorant of the Torah or deny the Torah or ignore the Torah, we have a problem if kosher witnesses knew of them.
6. The Gadol of America, Rav Yosef Eliyohu Henkin zt”l, wrote in Lev Ivro that when two Jews marry in a secular ceremony but they consider it marriage, or the type of secular marriage has a name, civil marriage, that indicates marriage and not Zenuse, we assume that they are married. (Lev Ivro page 12). Reb Moshe Feinstein zt”l disagrees EH IV:81. This is also a machlokess between the Ragetshover who is machmir and HaGaon Reb Yonoson Shteif who says the custom is to be lenient, see Teshuvose Rav Shteif #118.
7. If the husband and wife make a two ring ceremony, it would seem that both share in the act of Kiddushin, which could result in no Torah marriage at all. On the other hand, maybe the wife knows that her mother married with one ring, and she wants to give a ring only to be modern, but without violating the basic idea of Torah kiddushin. Reb Moshe Feinstein zt”l wrote in Even Hoezer IV:13:4 that in such a case the couple must be told by the rabbi that the marriage is when the husband gives the ring, and the wife may give the ring only after she is married by the husband’s giving of the ring, as a celebration of the previous act of marriage. But if this was not done, Reb Moshe does not know what to say, because who knows what the couple was thinking?
8. Also in the time of Rav Henkin even secular people recognized the role of the male as being the head of the house and the woman he married came into his possession. Therefore, any kind of “marriage” would satisfy the Torah requirements. But today with gender wars and the women insisting on being equal to men “marriage” means not what the Torah calls Kiddushin, when the wife is possessed by the husband, but rather a partnership. If so, the “partnership” marriage does not create Torah marriage.
9. Because of this, couples without kosher Kiddushin living together in New York or other areas where Orthodox Jews live and the couple has a de facto marriage without Kiddushin, we have a problem if by Torah law they are married. If they are married and broke up without a GET, we have a problem if the woman can remarry without a GET. And if she does remarry without a GET, we have a problem if the children are mamzerim.
1 . A woman in order to gain entrance to a country pretends to marry a man who is a citizen of that country, and she stays in his house, so that they both appear as man and wife. The man makes a condition he will do the woman a favor so she can enter the country, but she must stay in his house for three months and then she must leave and they will separate. Reb Moshe says she is not married by Torah standards. Igeres Moshe EV VI:112
1. A woman is married to a man in a Reform ceremony. The man and his ancestors were Reform. Reb Moshe Feinstein zt”l in Igeres Moshe IV:75 says that there is no marriage. In that case the couple was together a short time and were not in a neighborhood with frumeh Yidden. Yet Reb Moshe says that if possible a GET should be given. But if this is not possible he permits the woman to remarry without a GET.
1. A woman wanted to marry a Kohen but she is a divorcee. So she went to a Reform rabbi and married the Kohen. Reb Moshe says that she is not married to the Kohen because the Reform marriage is not a marriage. And if there are Orthodox people who know that they live together there may be kiddushin from biah, but that only applies to Orthodox people who don’t want to live with Zenuse. But people who go to Reform don’t have compunctions with what we call Zenuse. So there is no marriage, because those who are hefker regarding Torah and mitsvose have no reluctance to make a Biah of Zenuse. Igeres Moshe IV:76.
1 . In Igeres Moshe IV:77 Reb Moshe makes it clear that Reform people don’t make a ceremony of marriage acceptable to the Torah and they are deniers so that even Rav Henkin who considers civil marriage a Torah marriage would agree that this does not apply to Reform deniers of the Torah.
1 In Igeres Moshe IV:78 Reb Moshe says that a goy who is converted by a Conservative rabbi who is mechalel Shabbos who marries a Jewish woman with such a rabbi, she is not married. Rabbis known to be kofrim make invalid marriages and are invalid witnesses so she is not married.
1. A woman who met a man and they married in civil court where there were no Orthodox witnesses and stayed together only a few days. She is not married as no Orthodox witnesses knew they were together. Igeres Moshe IV:80
1. A Russian woman married there at a time when the government treated marriage as an easily broken thing and the government itself sometimes breaks up a marriage to serve the government. If the woman wants to be frum we can clarify what happened and find a reason to permit her to remarry. But if she won’t be frum we don’t have to help her get married and live in sin. Igeres Moshe IV:81.
1. See Reb Yonosan Shteif zt”l in his teshuvose207 is a Pilegesh permitted or forbidden. A Yevomo LaShuk who is a pilegesh is this permitted? See his teshuva at length forbidding a Yevoma LaShuk to be a pilegesh.
1. A woman finds out that her husband is a mumar. Is this kiddushei toose? See Reb Yonosan Shteif 103. See degrees of Mumar in teshuvose Yam Shel Shlomo #41 that perhaps applies in this case also. See also Ayin Yitschok I:24 about mekach yoose in marriage.
1. If somebody is married and takes another woman without kiddushin, and she stopped going to the Mikvah, and this goes on for many years, when she leaves the man, does she need a GET? Tsemach Tsedek from Lubavitch EH I:138 has lengthy discussion of this. He does not say a definite thing but concludes that there are proofs to be lenient. This is about a Pilegesh if she needs a GET.
. Regarding Pilegesh see Shulchan Aruch Even Hoezer 13:7: “A Pilegesh who lives only with one man who wants to marry somebody else must wait ninety days.” From this it seems that she does not need a GET because it only demands a delay of ninety days. The Gro there #19 says that she wants to have children. That is, they are married in practice if not with Kiddushin. And it would seem that there is no need of a GET as this is not mentioned. See Even Hoezer 26:1 a machlokess about Pilegesh forbidden or permitted.
. A husband is discovered to have a terrible fault such as being unable to have intimacy, we try to get a GET from him. If that is impossible, there is a great discussion in the Poskim. See Igeres Moshe EH1:80 at the end there his lenient opinion, and the opinion of the Gaon of Kovna in Ayin Yitschok EH 24 and Bare Yitschok 4 that this might be forbidden dirabonon.
2 Let us conclude that there is a great difference of opinion regarding many Jewish marriages, if they are valid or if people need a GET in order to remarry. We have previously discussed the issues of forcing husbands to give a GET that could make mamzerim.
2 It is a time to learn Even Hoezer, and each day, it is more important to learn Even Hoezer.