Profile Rabbi Dovid E. Eidensohn

Friday, February 26, 2016

Rabbi Herschel Schechter Says to Beat and Even Kill Husbands Who Withhold a GET

See my brother's blog of Feb 26,'16. It is about Rabbi Herschel Schechter's opinion that a husband who refuses a GET may be beaten and elsewhere, on tape, he is recorded as saying the husband may be killed. This is a refutation of this from the Shulchan Aruch and poskim. Interestingly enough, Rabbi Schechter has no source in the gemora or rishonim for what he says, and his "proofs" do not impress me. But we are here going to bring sources to show that the Shulchan Aruch and the major poskim and rishonim disagree with him completely.

HaGaon Rav Yosef Shalom Elyashev zt"l told me that any Beth Din that violates the sin of coercing a GET is not a Beth Din, and any woman divorced from it must get another GET as this GET is not recognized. That is, a kosher Beth Din must look into the matter to see if there is any way of proving that the GET is kosher, and if not, she needs another GET and may not remarry with the GET from a non-Orthodox Halacha Beth Din.

R. Herschel Shechter has called for beating and even killing husbands who won't give a GET any time the wife wants out of the marriage. Any GET that he gives is invalid, as he is not recognized as an Orthodox posek or rabbi. The same is true of "rabbi" Gedliah Schwartz who told me clearly that he sent away a couple who wanted a GET because he felt they didn't need one because although there was a proper Kiddushin and Chupa there was no Biah, a statement that shows he is a complete ignoramus and does not know that a woman is considered married without Biah but with either kiddushin using a valuable such as a ring, or a marital document. (Shulchan Aruch EH Kiddushin 26:4) Such people invent the Torah and they are not true rabbis but wicked deniers of the Torah. Anyone who gets a GET from Shechter or Schwartz, and possibly from the entire RCA, must ask a kosher Beth Din what to do.
I spoke to gedolei haposkim about this and it is clear that anyone who humiliates a husband to force a GET has made an invalid GET. This is brought down in the new Sefer Mishpitei Yisreol in the beginning with signatures of Reb Chaim Kanievsky Rav Shmuel HaLevi Wosner and many of the Israeli Gedolim. They also say that a GET from a Beth Din that violates the Halacha re: coercion of a GET is invalid.
See Rashbo in teshuvose VII:414 that a woman who demands a GET because the husband cannot be a man we do not coerce the husband "we do not put him in Nidui, we do not humiliate him, and we do not make for him physical pain." This Rashbo is quoted by the Radvaz IV:118 word for word. The Chazon Ish brings the Bais Yosef EH 154 who quotes the Rashbo, and the Chazon Ish adds it to his commentary and then rules that this is the Halacha See EH in Chazon Ish 108:12 .
And yet there are those who are desperate to twist and turn and invent and they change the words of the Rashbo "we do not humiliate him" to "we do not hit him." But the problem with that invention is that the Rashbo says three things, "we do not put him in nidui, we do not humiliate him which they change to we do not hit him, and we do not hurt him physically." Now, if the Rashbo already said we may not hit him, why does he repeat "And we do not hurt him physically." At any rate, the Rashbo that we have, the Radvaz, the Beis Yosef and the Chazon Ish all say clearly that it is forbidden to humiliate him. Furthermore, Rabbeinu Yona in Shaarei Teshuva par 139 says that humiliation is like murder. He quotes Chazal that one who humiliates another in public goes to Gehenum and never comes up. Thus, humiliation is an extreme coercion and invalidates the GET.
The Rashbo there talks about two husbands. The first husband is a regular husband and  the wife does not say that he is not possible to be a husband. Rather she says that she cannot tolerate living with him. In that case the Rashbo says, "We never coerce such a husband to divorce his wife, but if he wants to divorce, he divorces, and if he does not want to divorce, he does not divorce." This language means that no coercion or pressure is possible. Rabbeinu Tam quoted in Shita Kesubose says that it is even wrong for Beth Din to advise him that it would be a good thing to give a GET, as this is pressure of some kind. However, Rashbo talks about a second husband, who is not a man, cannot please his wife with intimacy, and is commanded by the Talmud to divorce his wife. But since it does not say in the Talmud to beat him, or coerce severely, the Rashbo says "we may not put him in Niduh, we may not humiliate him, and we may not cause him physical pain." But other milder coercions are permitted, such as telling him that he is wicked for disobeying the gemora.
The Shulchan Aruch EH in hapter 77 talks about a woman who demands a GET because her husband is disgusting to her. The Shulchan Aruch, Ramo, Gro, Beis Shmuel and Chelkas Mechokake all say there in par 2 and 3 the words of the Rashbo, "If he wants to divorce he may divorce and if he does not want to divorce he does not have to divorce." They interpret this to mean that no pressure may be put on him to divorce. If so, a woman who has a GET obtained from ORA has an invalid GET because it was pressured, and not just pressured, which is forbidden for all divorces, but was produced with humiliation, which is forbidden even for somebody who is not a man and is commanded by the Talmud to divorce.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Thoughts on the Beth Din of Rav Dovid Feinstein re: RSK and RNG

Thoughts on the Beth Din of Rav Dovid Feinstein re: RSK and RNG

By Rabbi Dovid E. Eidensohn

When I first  heard of the Beth Din of Rav Dovid Feinstein, I was fearful and negative, for the simple reason that I felt he was doing mission impossible, to satisfy Rabbis Shmuel Kaminetsky and Noto Greenblatt, and the halacha. As I understand it, Rabbi Shmuel Kaminetsky asked for this Beth Din. Now, he asked for this Beth Din to save his reputation which is now in tatters because great rabbonim in Israel, America and Canada have clearly written that Tamar has no right to remarry without a GET and if she does she lives in sin and her children will be mamzerim. If so, how can Rav Dovid make RSK and RNG happy unless he says what they want to hear, that Tamar may remarry without a GET. And if Reb Dovid would permit this, it would be a major catastrophe, not just for Torah, but for Reb Dovid, because at this point, the whole world knows the darker side of Reb Shmuel, and even Rav Dovid cannot put Humpty Dumpty back together again.

Susequently, I heard that somebody was working very hard to improve things, and based upon that, I had more confidence and was willing to give things a chance. Yesterday, I found out that nothing has changed, and that the situation is dragging on now for two weeks, and nobody sees an end to this for the above reason. As one very prominent person told me, Rav Dovid will surely not permit Tamar to remarry without a GET, but if he phrases his negative attitude in a manner that shows that RSK is still a Gadol, or if he phrases it in a way that does not clearly indicate how bad it was and how wicked it was, this will be a great problem. I spoke yesterday at length with two major poskim, and both were very upset about the Beth Din and wished that it would disappear.

As I understand, those in opposition to the Beth Din are ready to start speaking out against it. I don’t know where all of this will end up, and it may drag on and it may dissolve or it may succeed somehow. But what exactly will happen nobody knows. I want to express here what I heard from major poskim who have extensive experience with the world of pesak and Torah.

First of all, there is outrage that Reb Dovid did not immediately order Tamar to separate from her boyfriend.  Even if we hold that a woman who was told by a Beth Din to remarry without a GET is not a sinner, because she followed the established Beth Din, and is ONUS, like a forced woman, Tamar was not forced to marry, and was clearly aware that the greatest rabbis opposed her remarrying without a GET. A major rabbi in Philadelphia went to Israel and spoke to the elder and Gaon Rav Nissim Karelitz about the case and was told that she may not remarry without a GET. This major rabbi returned to Philadelphia and told Tamar and her mother, but they were not interested. Now, the opinion that permits a woman to remarry talks about a case where there was only one Beth Din and it was the accepted Beth Din and it permitted the woman with no question. But when a very senior Rov and his Beth Din forbid the woman to remarry, but somebody comes along, without a Beth Din, and permits her, and she knows that the great rabbi forbade it, she is not forced to remarry. And therefore, she is an intentional sinner and surely was never “forced” to marry.

The fact that Rav Dovid has been sitting on this case for two weeks whereby nothing has been done, and Tamar is living with her boyfriend in very serious sin, is a great complaint against the Beth Din. On the other hand, this Beth Din is not there to tell people that RSK and RNG erred in their pesak. Everybody knows that all ready and many great rabbis have clearly stated this. The Beth Din of Reb Dovid is to try, if it is at all possible, to make a statement that RSK and RNG will accept to the extent that they will openly admit that they were wrong. This would be a great achievement because these two rabbis are very prominent and many women would accept their opinions if they do not change their minds. This is the main benefit of this Beth Din.

The question though is, whether satisfying the two rabbis is right. If as is widely assumed that they did some very bad things, how can they be honored by Rav Dovid and his Beth Din after they encouraged a woman to remarry without a GET, and have a child that will be a mamzer?
The great problem is the Agudah. If the Agudah is pressuring Reb Dovid to go easy on Reb Shmuel, we don’t know what will happen. Therefore, at this point, the reputations of RSK and RNG and the Agudah is at stake, and nobody knows where the wind will blow. The great rabbis that I spoke to are furious that Reb Dovid is silent on the issue of Tamar staying with her boyfriend. They are also very upset that Rav Dovid may temper his criticism of the Tamar heter to somehow hint that RSK and RBG are really prominent rabbis and maybe what they said was not based on lies, etc. That would be a great problem.

I have written this briefly, to present the situation. One thing is for sure: If at this juncture, Rav Dovid will release a statement that erases or even eases the evil done by these two rabbis, it will not be accepted, other than in Agudas Israel, which is the only one who has a dog in this fight because  the Agudah treats Reb Shmuel as a great gadol. And if Reb Dovid criticizes him it would besmirch the Agudah. So it is unlikely that this episode will end quickly or in a way that everyone will accept. It will probably just feed the fumes of another round of ferocious criticism of the rabbis who permitted Tamar to remarry without a GET, but this time, if Reb Dovid backs them, he will be the target, but whether he is worried about those things I don’t know.

From my brother's blog - Studying Kedusho and Intimacy is important

Rav Yitzchok Isaac Sher: the Importance, nature and holiness of sexual relations
Kuntres Kedushas Yisroel (Introduction): The Ravad wrote in Baal Nefesh at the beginng of Sha'ar HaKedusha, "I wish to write at length and in detail in this section because there is benefit in being expansive. That is because in these matters the majority of people err in their understanding and therefore make mistakes in what they do. Therefore I saw fit to expound on this topic until it becomes simple and clearly understood to all those who are interested."

We see that this genuinely pious person (Ravad) said that he knows that in these matters most people err. Because he is concerned about these people, he wanted to teach them the proper understanding to deal with these matters and the proper conduct to lead a proper life. However in our lowly times, it seems to me the G-d fearing scholars do not know these matters and there are many talmidei chachomim who simply rely on their knowledge based on studying this Sha'aar HaKedusha of the Ravad. However the truth is that the Sha'ar HaKedusha is a closed document for people like us and is not properly understood. The Ravad with his deep understanding thought that his brief words were sufficiently clear for proper understanding and he even apologized in his introduction for being so expansive in this matter. He did this so that what he wrote should be simple and understandable to all those who studied it. However for those who don't have extensive knowledge, these words are often merely unclear allusions which require much elaborations and explanations in order to understand their profoundity properly

After the Ravad (1125-1198) we merited to have the Igros Kodesh attributed to the Ramban (1194-1270). Even though the Ramban saw the words of the Ravad, he nevertheless decided it would be proper to expand the material into 6 chapters. He explained the material in an impressive manner with principles and detail as to what to do. However due to our poor comprehension even the Ramban’s expansions are too terse and they themselves now need to be expanded and clarified. I will try with G-d’s help to explain the depth of his words and remove the difficulties to those who study them that prevent proper understanding.

In the first chapter I will discuss the topic in general – that these issues determine the sanctity of the Chosen Jewish People and whether they are able to be holy to G-d as the Torah says, “You should sanctify yourselves and be holy because I the L-rd am holy. Just as He is holy so should you be holy. Given that the material that man is made of and his nature are the causes of being good or bad based on his temperment and this is determined by the nature of the drop from which he developed – it follows that sexual intercourse of a man and woman is the cause of the holiness of the Jewish people and the holiness of G-d or mundaneness according to the children that are born since they constitute the nation. Therefore we are commanded to sanctify ourselves at the time of intercourse since that is the cause of giving birth to tzadikim who sanctify G-d’s name or evil people who profane G-d’s name. Therefore it is a holy obligation to know what is this sanctification. In explaining this holiness there are five aspects which are explained in these chapters – the nature of intercourse, the appropriate time, the food that is appropriate to eat, the intent and motivation for intercourse and the quality of intercourse. [to be continued]

Monday, February 22, 2016

How to Have Intimacy with your Wife and Go To Gehenum - The Steipler

Igeres HaKodesh from the Steipler copied from my brother's blog

Monday, February 22, 2016

The Steipler: The correct understanding of the mitzva to love one's wife Igros Kodesh #1

Igros Kodesh (#1): 1) While it is true that asceticism in dealing with the lusts of this world is an important thing [assuming that it is done for the sake of heaven to give pleasure to G-d and not just to be more developed in spirituality] but that is only if it is done after he has already fulfilled is Torah obligations. However if by being ascetic he nullifies the slightest of his Torah obligations then his deeds are credited to the Sitra Acher [evil] - G-d forbid and he doesn’t advance in true spirituality. So even though he views himself as becoming a more elevated being by his asceticism he in fact is burying himself in the grave of pride by considering himself a very spiritual person when in fact his spirituality is seriously defective. And this frequently manifests itself as degradation in that it leads him to committing an actual Torah prohibition and he is not able to restrain himself at all as we know from a actual case where this happened – G-d should preserve us!

Conjugal rights of the wife is a Torah commandment just as serious as eating matzo. And even ignoring it when she is pregnant [when the wife has not truly excused him wholeheartedly from his obligations] makes into a complete sinner. And sins like this which are between two people are not atoned for even by Yom Kippur. He is like a robber or mugger who steals from his wife what is owed to her. This is comparable to killing his wife since it is known that the prime hope of a woman in this world is that she have a husband who loves her. Therefore when she see that he doesn’t love her, it is almost life threatening (pikuach nefesh) because of the great upset and anguish he causes her by making her like a widow while her husband is still alive.

The conjugal obligations of workers is twice a week, for a talmid chachom it is once a week. The Achronim write that in modern times we do not have people who are called talmidei chachomim according to Chazal [that is because in modern times we are not properly careful about not nullifying ourselves from Torah study and there are other reasons], nevertheless the reason why a talmid chachom only has an obligation once a week is because the Torah weakens his physical strength. That reason would therefore apply also a talmid chachom in modern times. However a talmid chachom who knows that he has the strength retains the obligation of having intercourse twice a week. This is how it is explained in the Biur Halacha (O.C. 240). This was the practice of the Chasam Sofer as is known – see the Mishna Berura there. It is also the practise of most talmidei chachomim in modern times ]before they reach old age ] It is obvious that she married with the understanding that her husband would follow the accepted practise. And furthermore the husband is obligated by the kesuba to conduct himself according to normative practise [for those similar to himself]. It is obvious that if he wants to exempt himself by have intercourse only once a week and not twice that this is close to creating a situation of a genuine uncertainty regarding a Torah obligation. Aside from that there is a separate obligation for the husband when he is aware that she desires to have relations – even if she indicates this by very slight hints as is explained in Shulchan Aruch (O.C. 240:1 which is from Pesachim 72 and in a number of other places.

2) The details of sexual intercourse of the mitzva of conjugal obligations are explained in the Siddur of Rav Yaakov Emden in the section of the laws of Shabbos night. It should be studied carefully because these are actual halachic obligations. Because according to the Torah it is prohibited to have intercourse in circumstances where the woman is not interested and therefore it is necessary to get her interested with intimate activities such as hugging and kissing until she is sexual aroused and desires intercourse. Because if this is not done first – it is like placing her before a lion who mauls and eats as is explained in Pesachim (49). [It is a terrible sin to deprive her of her sexual rights even if he is doing it for the sake of piety and asceticism. Taking what belongs to his wife can not be the basis of piety by theft and treating her as a slave]. Furthermore to have sexual intercourse against her will results in having children who are sinners and rejecters of Torah – they are call bnei anusa (children of rape).

A husband who grabs and has intercourse immediately without preliminary intimacy and then separates immediate after ejaculation and leaves her, might think that he is acting like a highly spiritual angel. But in actual truth he has not lowered his lust at all even though he definitely has placated his desires for the time being sine he has in fact obtained full pleasure from this intercourse. In contrast his wife felt no pleasures at all from this abrupt sexual act. In fact she has been hurt and shamed and the tears she sheds in private will not go unanswered. That is because our Sages(Bava Metzia) tell us that the Gate of Tears has not been closed. They say that a man should be very careful with his wife honor because she readily cries. There is no question that such a brutal act arouses Divine judgment against him. Furthermore he does not merit to have Divine help either in spiritual or material issues. And this that he mistakenly thinks he becomes a highly spiritual person by trying to be insensitive to his wife in sexual matters – this is a worthless fantasy and a lie. That is because from sins and transgression, one becomes blemished and spiritually impure – not elevated.

And this is stated in Shulchan Aruch (240:8) that it is done only after his wife is placated and is interested in doing it. Because otherwise it is prohibited to have intercourse without her consent as is explicit there in the Shulchan Aruch (240:3) and as is explained in the Siddur of Rav Yaakov Emden and this is actual Torah halacha. [In particular what is written in Shulchan Aruch (68). We see in Orchos Chaim in the name of Neziros Shimshon who writes that according to the Zohar and the writings of the Arizal – the halacha is in accord with the first explanation [that one should not have intent for the sake of pleasure but only for the sake of doing a mitzva]. However according to the second and third explanations [that they should be dressed during intercourse and that it should be done quickly] the opposite is true and there is a prohibition in doing this according to kabbalah. Nevertheless even according to the view of the Shulchan Aruch this is only if done with the full agreement of the wife. And thus is my understanding.

3) One who is intimate with his wife with hugging and other things for the sake of Heaven because he wants to have mercy on her that she shouldn’t be pained and feel abandoned – this will not cause the slightest weakening of his fear of Heaven or succumbing to lust. The opposite is true – it will bring him to holiness (kedusha) and he will be fulfilling the Torah command of imitating G-d. Just as He is merciful so to you should be merciful. Besides that hugging and kissing or any other act of intimacy is an inherent part of the mitzva of onah (conjugal duties) as is explained by the poskim regarding Shulchan Aruch (Y.D. 184:10) concerning the obligation when a man goes on a trip just before the time for his wife’s menstrual period. 

4) While it is true that many talmidei chachomm conduct themselves in an ascetic manner in a number of intimate things – but that is only with the complete agreement of his wife and with her forgiveness with a full heart. And this agreement comes in most cases after it is explained to her that in truth her husband loves her and it is only for the sake of heaven that he is restraining himself. Or alternatively she married someone who is known as a tzadik whose reputation compensates for her loss of intimacy with him. But G-d forbid that the husband should conduct himself as an ascetic when it causes pain to his wife who is dependent upon him and does not forgive him whole heartedly concerning that which he is obligated to do for her.

5) Our Sages (Yevamos 62b) say, One who loves his wife as himself and honors her more than himself…is described by the verse "You should know that you will have peace with your wife…." It is important to note that our Sages are not saying to love one's wife with the natural love that man is attracted to a woman but rather to love her with the love that friends have for each other - as someone he knows and has a covenant with him and that they are partners in many things and each one helps and receives help from the other. In addition the love he feels for her should also come from gratitude. He needs to have the clear image in his mind that if he had not gotten a wife and would have remained alone and isolated - how much suffering and pain he would have from this. But now that he has a wife his life is in place and functioning. The significance of gratitude is immeasurably important. In fact our Sages state in the Mishna Rabbi Eliezer (Chapter 7) that all those who lack gratitude to their fellow men will eventually lack gratitude towards G-d. If you look there you will see how extremely stringent they are in this matter. This type of love is what our Sages say a man is obligated to have towards his wife. And again this love does not come from the lust a man has for a woman at all but from one of the good attributes which he is obligated to have. He needs to have this type of love and feeling towards her when he strives to cause her rejoicing at the time of intercourse and well as before and afterwards. Such a relationship is not disgusting – chas v'shalom – but rather it is a mitzva. In fact he should conduct himself in this manner even if he were not obligated by the Torah and surely now that the Torah does obligated it - as we mentioned before.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

What does the Gaon Rav Dovid Feinstein Want with His Meeting?

  • Response to my brother's blog on Rav Dovid Feinstein.

    It seems that the writer of the above feels that Reb Dovid Feinstein is within halachic guidelines if he pronounces Aharon unable to marry and Tamar is married to the new husband. I don't know what mitzvah it is to state the above things that are pure conjecture and I feel they are completely wrong. Anyone who imputes to anyone today the right to consider the Kaminetsky sevorose as halachically binding defies basic Halacha.
    1) First of all, Reb Moshe Feinstein himself says that if he permits a woman to remarry without a GET when she was badly fooled by the husband to marry him, it is only when it is impossible to get a GET. Here Aharon Friedman told me that he is willing to give a GET, and it seems that many people know this. Therefore, Reb Moshe would forbid Tamar from remarrying without a GET.
    2) If Reb Dovid recognizes Tamar's new marriage, he is arguing with his father.
    3) And if his father is opposed to Tamar, who in the world is there who backs Tamar's remarriage? Is Reb Dovid greater than his father and the Noda Biyehuda I:80 who says that even in cases where it is obvious that the woman was fooled by a terrible man to marry her, she cannot remarry without a GET? Does Reb Dovid disagree with the Noda Biyehuda and his father Reb Moshe?
    4) And if Reb Dovid decides to go his own way and pasken against the Noda Biyehuda, the Kovna Rov, both who were gedolei hador generations before Reb Dovid, does this mean he does not believe in ruling like the majority which is usually the case (Choshen Mishpot 25:2 see Gro 18 many sources to this)?
    5) And if Reb Dovid does feel that he can rule against the Noda Biyehuda, Kovna Rov, Beis HaLevi who ruled that one cannot remarry without a GET even in these extreme situations, what does he do with the Mahari ben Leib, considered by some the rebbe of the Beis Yosef, who writes in his teshuva sefer4 19 3 "When we adjudicate about allowing a woman to marry and there is a question if she is permitted to marry because rabbis argue, we are stringent not to allow her to marry even if most rabbis are lenient." Surely if most rabbis are stringent we don't allow her to remarry. But if Reb Dovid agrees with Reb Shmuel, he is a minority against the vast majority of earlier generations and today. What right does he have to even consider this, if he does? Of course, I don't know why he is doing what he is doing, and maybe he has something worthwhile to say for that. But it surely is suspicious nine days of nothing for what?
    6)If Reb Dovid says that he disagrees with the Mahari ben Leib what does he do with a Tosfose in Kesubose 2A that says the same thing, that although in other cases we would be lenient, if we are talking about a woman marrying someone who is forbidden to be with her, and a sin is committed constantly, we can be strict.
    7) The entire episode of Reb Dovid lending his name to someone who has been exposed in the worst way by rabbis throughout the world as one who permits a woman to remarry with no honest halalcha backing, is a first rate chilul Hashem. It will completely destroy respect for Reb Dovid and anyone who will agree with him. Why did he get involved in this?
    8) I don't know. And maybe he did it under pressure from the Agudah, because they, and only they, have a dog in this fight. If RSK is not able to redeem his reputation, and the Agudah is unable to get rid of him, the Agudah is besmirched. The fact that the Agudah is not expelling him when all of the great rabbis in the world have declared him as a mamzer maker tells us something. If Reb Dovid wants to work with them, he is finished with me. I am a close Talmid of his father and got a very warm haskomo from him for my seforim, but if Reb Moshe's son wants to join the evil doers, he is finished with me and with a lot of other people. What a terrible thing. Let us hope he pulls out of this before he does something he will regret. There are people who are famous for their learning and so nobody wants to tell them the truth. Well, I will tell him the truth, here, and in the future. Let him be warned.
    Dovid Eidensohn
    Haskomo from Reb Moshe Feinstein zt"l on my seforim:
    This Rav haGaon (me) is known to me for many years as one who delves very deeply to clarify complicated halochose.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Halacha of Marital Intimacy - Rav Shlomo Wolbe on my Brother's Blog

taken from - emphasis added

Rav Shlomo Wolbe: Importance of sexual satisfaction - and not just focusing on doing a mitzva

Igros Kodesh (#4):  Question: How to avoid emission of sperm while asleep at night when his wife is a nida and also during the time when she is permitted to him? Answer: I am forced to answer even though it is very difficult to clarify the matter in a written reply. From his letter I got the impression that he needs guidance in the broader topic of what is the nature of married life. Marital relations need to be such that he is sexually satisfied even during the time when he needs to separate from his wife because of nida. Thus we are not talking about the number of times of intercourse but rather the quality of the sexual relationship.

Young men, especially those who are serious about spiritual development, think that sanctifying oneself during sexual intercourse can only mean that one needs to minimize lust and sexual feelings as much as possible. But this is a complete mistake as can be seen from the enlightening comments of Rashi (Nida 17a). Also please look at the Rokeach (Jerusalem edition page 27a) who cites Nedarim (20b) that everything that a man wants to do with his wife he can do in order that he won’t have any interest in other women. 

We see clearly that sexual relations need to be so satisfying until all other women are in his eyes as hens and he absolutely no desire to even look at them. This is also implied by the statement of Chazal concerning the reward for those husband who prolong physical contact with their wives after intercourse is finished. Thus we see the need for intercourse to be intense and satisfying – and not done merely to fulfill one's obligation and similar extrinsic matters. And therefore if a person is concerned for the quality of intercourse itself, I am sure that he will be so satieted and satisfied that lust will not be a problem even during the period of nida. 

Aside from this he needs to strengthen his Torah study. That means not merely study with a book but to train his thoughts to be involved with thoughts of Torah study. For example before he leaves his house or yeshiva to organize Torah issues to think about until he reaches his destination and that he shouldn’t be empty of Torah even when he walking in the street. 

And regarding not looking at women – there is the advice of the Gra that one should pray before leaving to go into the street – that G-d should guard him from all aspects of sin including sinful thoughts until he reaches his destination (See Orchos Chaim #135 at the end of the Gra’s Siddur). 

Furthermore he should learn with joy and not to worry or fear at all. That is because worry and fear just arouse the mind and nocturnal emssions –G-d forbid. And with G-d’s help if he conducts himself as I have described he will see success.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Meeting about Rabbis Kaminetsky and Greenblatt - My Comments

It has now been a few days that the world has been alerted to the meeting of Rabbi Dovid Feinstein and several other rabbis to do something about the situation with Tamar Epstein. Interested parties are Rabbi Shmuel Kaminetsky and probably Rabbi N. Greenblatt. But after a few days, nobody knows anything that has transpired. People are wondering. Here are my comments.

First of all, since around Yom Kippur past, the world has been notified that Tamar has remarried. Many rabbis have strongly protested. But nothing happened. Now, why is there a meeting of prominent rabbis now? Does RSK think that Rabbi Dovid Feinstein will support him in what he did? If Reb Dovid or any rabbi does that, the rabbi has lost his credibility big time. For Reb Dovid the situation is in more precarious than for other rabbis. Because Reb Moshe his father clearly states that although there are grounds to terminate a marriage in certain emergency situations, this holds true only if the husband refuses to give a GET. However, in the Tamar case, everyone knows that the husband will give a GET if he can be sure of getting custody of his daughter in a meaningful way, meaning that Tamar will have to move back to Washington or Baltimore. Therefore, if Reb Dovid backs the Heter, he is defying his father, which is ridiculous to contemplate. (I have spoke to Aharon about this several times.)

If so, why is there this meeting? Who wanted it and what did they expect from it? Here is my take on it.

I was told that the Nevominsker Rebbe was involved in this, but I don't know, and it seems that nobody knows if any of this is true. But my thoughts coincide with this as I will explain.

We want to know who arranged this meeting. And, simultaneously, we want to know what the arranger wanted from the meeting. Phrased a big differently: What normal person would get involved  in this mess? Why?

I believe that the pressure for this meeting comes from only one group that is desperate to straighten things out, and that is Agudas Yisroel. It is now accepted in the world that RSK did a terrible and wrong thing. But who cares? RSK is a very old man with a very long history of doing important things for the Torah world. Even if he did something wrong at this stage, he has enough students and disciples to survive, even though perhaps most people will reject his "gadluse." And furthermore, for RSK to call such a meeting that has a very small chance of accepting his destruction of Tamar, makes no sense. So who would call this meeting and who is so desperate to call it when it makes no sense for anybody to anticipate anything from it?

The Agudah must straighten this out, because it has clearly marked Reb Shmuel as a major Gadol in Klal Yisroel and one of their great rabbis. In the event that times go on and more and more people are asking why RSK is still silent about Tamar, this will impact more on the Agudah than it will on RSK and his son, who really don't care about what people say about them. I heard this from a Rov who heard it from RSK, that people say this and that about him and he doesn't care. I heard it also from another source.

I am not a friend of the Agudah. I recall that some years back they backed the gays in a defense bill in Washington. I think it was the only religious group that backed the gays. Around that time, I called up two of the senior Roshei Yeshiva of Agudah and asked them to help out with fighting the gays. They both said the exact same words that "it is forbidden to fight gays" and when I asked why they said, "Because we are against hate."

Now, I don't know about the Roshei Yeshiva of the Agudah, but I say a posuk when the Torah is taken from the Aron HaKodesh that says קומה השם ויפצו איביך וינסו משנאיך מפניו . Who in the world is greater enemy of the Torah than the gays who defy the biblical ban on homosexuality?

I have a friend whose wife took him to a secular court. The judge ordered him to give a GET or go to jail. The friend told me that he called up a prominent person in the Agudah and was told that they don't get involved in such things. (After all, they are busy helping gays.)

It is time to go beyond the Agudah. It is a new world and the Chofetz Chaim and Reb Aharon Kotler don't work there any more. Reb Shmuel does, and he has some friends.

The issue is whether or not RSK is a gadol or not. If he is not, he must be removed from the Agudah's rabbinic leadership. But if he has destroyed a yesoma and maybe her child, how can be stay a Gadol? And will the Agudah support women who follow Tamar?

My personal opinion is that there is no kosher way to solve this, and it is likely that whoever pressured these rabbis to have this meeting to save the Agudah or whatever has just made things worse. I don't even know how there can be a revealed end to this meeting. Unless they announce that they have solved everything but it is a secret. That is ridiculous, but the whole meeting is ridiculous. There is no way to have such a meeting and promote RSK as a Gadol and keep Tamar married and having children. But if the Agudah backed the gays in the defense bill, who knows what they will do for their political problems? They needed gays because the big politicians are liberals. That means money for Yeshivas and power for the Agudah. So why not throw out the Torah a second time and announce that RSK is a gadol and everyone must accept it.

I won't.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

My brother reports on his blog - A New Beth Din for RSK and RNG

A new Beth Din for RSK and RNG. I have this to say:

A lot of people have a pretty good idea of what RSK did, and what RNG did, and if there is any effort to wash them clean from the anti-halacha things they did, I will protest on my blog and if my brother allows it, on this blog. And I won't be the only one.
These three people can protest that it is not a real Beth Din, and that it is just there to restore the reputation of two rabbis who have the worst reputation. But the rest of us don't have these goals. And we are waiting. But if they are doing this leshaim shomayim, they will surely merit what I can't imagine, that things will work out for them and for everyone else.
But I am waiting, and as I said, all of us are waiting, and we have had enough of the "great rabbis" and their inventions. This is going to stop one way or the other. The stopping has already begun by rabbis who have nothing to do with this meeting. I am prepared to make war on "Gedolim" leadership if they come up with a whitewash of people who did terrible sins to other people and to the Shulchan Aruch. We can't have a world where prominent people can do every sin and get away with it.

Guest Post - American Women in Military and Draft

by Yomim Postelnik

Regarding women and the draft (and make no mistake, Selective Service registration is for a draft if needed, and one day it might be) aside from going against the morals of any society at any time, it would by nature promote mass rape on the battlefield.
Normal people don't do what happened in Abu Ghraib and battle circumstances change the nature of many. No, not all and not even the majority, but a wartime draft would subject thousands of women to rape.
Don't believe me? I'm just a wingnut?
Fine..... look at college campuses and accept that many allegations are fabricated. How many rapes occur there per year - under far less grueling circumstances than war?
I did not understand the seriousness of this until Rabbi Dovid Eidensohn started a blog on the issue that points out the crucial details that get lost when every issue is spoken of in genteel sophistry.
Please see his writings on the subject - He told me in conversation that the Chazon Ish offered to give his life to Hashem in order for there to be no draft of girls in Israel. He passed shortly after, saying right before that it will never be forced on the people because of the spiritual war that many launched (it's on the books but has never and will never be actually forced on women - over there). This is similar to the Lubavitcher Rebbe's offer of giving his life for Jewish security there a month and a half before his stroke.
I know that there are some people who mistakenly use the guise of "women's rights" to promote abortion on demand (infanticide if the mother's life is not at risk), divorce as one upmanship, gender wars under false pretenses and everything else, but do these same Al Sharpton style gender warmongers (most decent people agree with Equal Pay, equal rights in all matters and recognize different natures - remember it's conservatives who say that children need both a Mommy and Daddy and libs who say that two of either or three of each is just as good or better).
But do they now want to promote the wholesale rape of thousands of women for the sake of Political Correctness??!

Yomin Postelnik
(954) 701-716

Monday, February 8, 2016

What is the Halacha about Biological Desire?

by Rabbi Dovid E. Eidensohn

Years ago, at my son's wedding in Israel, I met someone who had at the wedding become my mechuton, the great Gaon and Tsadik Rav Mayer Bransdorfer. I tried to talk to him in learning during the wedding, but there was too much noise. So the next day, which was Friday, I went to his house and sat with him for an hour. Finally, I told  him it was late and I had no right to detain him any longer just before Shabbos. He was very friendly, walked me to the door and said, "You have the sources, but we don't do things that way."

Before I go further, I want to say that I agree with him when he said "we don't do things that way" but I am also right, that the sources say like me. If that sounds confusing, let me explain.

The laws of intimacy in marriage in the poskim and Shulchan Aruch, contain two opposite thoughts. One is "anything a man wants to do with his wife he can do" and the other thought is to encourage a man to act in a modest and holy fashion. These two are contradictions, major contradictions.

But there are two types of people. One has biological urges that can overpower him. Another person does not have these urges. One lives in America or other treifeh places that swarm with Yetser Hora, and some live in some super-holy neighborhood in Israel. These two opposite kind of people have the opposite kind of halacha in marital intimacy. Americans and those who have biological tendencies that are problems are encouraged "all that a man wants to do with his wife he can do." If he does not do these things, who knows what sins he will commit? I once was told to speak to a certain person. I spoke to him and he blurted out to me how much problems he has. Eventually, he acted upon these problems and ruined his life. You can't mess with the Yetser. So, people with problems have got to stay away from problems, and one way is to do with your wife whatever you sense yourself wanting to do. Maybe there are some limits but the Shulchan Aruch and Rambam are not clear about what the limits are. So we will leave this for your imagination. But for somebody without these drives, why not embrace holiness? Of course, everyone must make their wife happy, that is a posuk in the Torah. But beyond that, there are different people and different halochose.

Somebody asked me about some weird acts, and I didn't respond to him right away. But he kept at it, and it was obvious that he was struggling. Then he told me about his Yetser Hora and his base drives. When he told me this I said, "A person who has such drives and fights them is looking to jump into the fire. Better to satisfy yourself with your wife than doing what else you really want to do."

We have begun our discussion. If anyone has questions about these laws, call me at 845-578-1917 or write to me at I don't know you personally and may not be able to know always what you should do, but I will try my best, and maybe after some discussion, I will be able to tell you my opinion.

Thank you,
Dovid Eidensohn

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

America is at War, Generals are Calling for a Draft for Women, and Torah Jews don't care?

First paragraph from Fox News:

The top Army and Marine Corps generals told senators Tuesday that it will take up to three years to fully integrate women into all combat jobs, adding that women also should have to register for the draft. (Emphasis mine as is rest of article)

A woman drafted in the army is יהרג ואל יעבור a capital crime. Women drafted for the army will kill themselves. And those who don't kill themselves right away may do so after they are raped, as there is a large amount of sexual abuse done to women in colleges and surely the military. See our articles on this on our two blogs, and . 

There are those who say there will never be a draft. But the United States now is fighting in various parts of the world, in Iraq and Syria. The Russians have sliced a good peace of land from a neighboring country and fly aggressively near American planes. America just sent billions of dollars of large military equipmenet to various countries near Russia because they are afraid of the Russians. Who says there won't be fighting? And who says there won't be a draft?

China is expanding its control of land claimed by Japan. America is committed to defending Japan. Who says there won't be a war? Who says there won't be a draft?

ISIS is fighting in various countries. America is fighting them. Who says there won't be a draft? And if American woman are drafted to fight ISIS, who guarantees that ISIS will not capture an American woman? 

Let's just keep dreaming. It is nicer than knowing the truth. But when the truth comes, and you're not ready for it, what will you do then?