web analytics
November 27, 2014 / 5 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



Q & A: Incongruous And Unbecoming (Part II)


QuestionsandAnswers-logo

The same baraita also notes that members of the house of Rabban Gamliel were permitted to sit with the authorities and discuss Greek philosophy. Thus cutting one’s hair in a heathen manner (possibly dressing like them too) and participating in philosophical discussions were allowed, not only to avoid censure, but also to promote the success of their endeavors. (It is also possibly allowed for personal endeavors such as attaining a parnassa since this personal endeavor is an indirect public good inasmuch as it relieves a burden from the communal chest.)

The exact definition of a beloriyoth depends on a dispute among halachic authorities in the explanation of the Mishnah in Avodah Zara 8a. The Mishnah states that the day a heathen cuts his beloriyoth was considered to be a festival for his idolatry. Rashi (s.v. “beloriyoth”) explains that the heathens would, on a regular basis, shave their hair in the front but leave hair in the back. However, once a year they would shave off the hair in the back as well and on that day they would hold a celebration to their gods. The hair in the back was called the beloriyoth. Rashi in Bava Kamma, as we noted above (83a s.v. “midarchei amori”) also mentions the opinion held by Teshuvat Geonim that heathens would shave the hair above their ears. Thus, according to Rashi, it would seem that this prohibition does not refer to growing long hair in the front of the head since this was clearly not the specified practice.

Rambam’s opinion (Hilchos Avodah Zara 11:1) remains a matter of dispute. Some authorities (Beth Yosef, ibid.) maintain that Rambam only forbids shaving the entire head except for the hair in the middle of the crown of the head, or shaving the hair in front and leaving hair in back. There is no prohibition, however, against allowing the hair in front to grow.

The Pri Chadash (Kuntres Mayim Chayyim on Rambam, Hilchos Avodah Zara 11) maintains that according to Rambam, heathens wore their hair long, loose on top and braided underneath, and wearing such a hairstyle would be considered following the ways of the Amorites, and is forbidden. Others (Bach Y.D. 178; Machatzis HaShekel, Orach Chayyim 27) maintain that according to Rambam, someone who grows long bangs or forelocks also transgresses this prohibition.

Some would wish to interpret from the Mishnah Berurah (Orach Chayyim 27:15) that he is of the same view. Yet, he mentions hair on the forehead only when discussing whether hair is considered a chatzitzah, an interposition between the tefillin shel rosh and the forehead in placement of the tefillin.

We find that the gaon Rabbi Yom Tov Lipman Heller (Divrei Chamudot to Rosh, Halachot Ketanot, Hilchot Tefillin, found in our Vilna Shas at the end of Menachot), in the course of his discussion of this matter cites a contrary view found in Teshuvot Rashba. Rashba states that there is a view that a hat or head covering (and surely one’s own hair) might not necessarily constitute a chatzitzah under the tefillin shel rosh. He also cites the Jerusalem Talmud saying that we should see what the preponderance of people do (compare B.T. Berachot 45a). Thus, according to this view, one’s own hair would not constitute a chatzitzah, seemingly causing no problems with growing the front of one’s hair. Today we do see that to have some hair in the front is common practice.

 

(To be continued)

About the Author: Rabbi Yaakov Klass, rav of Congregation K’hal Bnei Matisyahu in Flatbush, Brooklyn, is Torah Editor of The Jewish Press. He can be contacted at yklass@jewishpress.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Q & A: Incongruous And Unbecoming (Part II)”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Betar soccer fans pour out on the field at Jerusalem's Teddy Stadium, where Hamas planned to carry out a mass-casualty attack.
Hamas Planned Massive Attack at Teddy Soccer Stadium in Jerusalem
Latest Judaism Stories
Dante's Vision of Rachel and Leah

Yitzhak called you Esav and you answered him, then he called you Yaakov and you also answered him!”

Rabbi Avi Weiss

Yitzchak thought the Jewish people needed dual leadership: Eisav the physical; Yaakov the spiritual

Weiss-112114-Sufganiot

According to the Sefer Yetzirah, the nature of the month of Kislev is sleep.

Teller-Rabbi-Hanoch-NEW

Though braggarts come across as conceited, their boasting often reflects a low sense of self-regard

Not every child can live up to our hopes or expectations, but every child is loved by Hashem.

Leaders must always pay attention to the importance of timing.

While our leaders have been shepherds, the vast majority of the Children of Israel were farmers.

Maimonides himself walked and prayed in the permissible areas when he visited Eretz Yisrael in 1165

If a man dies childless, the Torah commands the deceased’s brother to marry his brother’s widow in a ceremony known as yibum, or to perform a special form of divorce ceremony with her known as chalitzah.

Dovid turned to the other people sitting at his table. “I’m revoking my hefker of the Chumash,” he announced. “I want to keep it.”

Ever Vigilant
‘When Unworthy, One’s Number Of Years Is Reduced’
(Yevamos 50a)

Question: My young daughter was recently diagnosed with autism. She does not function well socially and is extremely introverted, but we have noticed that she reacts very well to small animals. We reported this to her therapist who suggested that we get a dog or cat as a pet. We know that most religious people frown upon having pets, but we hate to see our daughter suffer and want to do anything that would make her happy. Would it be okay to own a pet in the circumstances we described?

Her Loving Parents
(Via E-Mail)

Ramban interprets Korban as self-sacrifice, each Jew should attempt to recreate Akeidas Yitzchak.

Dr. Schwartz had no other alternatives up his sleeve. He suggested my mother go home and think about what she wanted to do.

Why does Lavan’s speaking before his father show that he was wicked? Disrespectful, yes. Rude, certainly. But a rasha?

More Articles from Rabbi Yaakov Klass
QuestionsandAnswers-logo

Question: My young daughter was recently diagnosed with autism. She does not function well socially and is extremely introverted, but we have noticed that she reacts very well to small animals. We reported this to her therapist who suggested that we get a dog or cat as a pet. We know that most religious people frown upon having pets, but we hate to see our daughter suffer and want to do anything that would make her happy. Would it be okay to own a pet in the circumstances we described?

Her Loving Parents
(Via E-Mail)

Question: My young daughter was recently diagnosed with autism. She does not function well socially and is extremely introverted, but we have noticed that she reacts very well to small animals. We reported this to her therapist who suggested that we get a dog or cat as a pet. We know that most religious people frown upon having pets, but we hate to see our daughter suffer and want to do anything that would make her happy. Would it be okay to own a pet in the circumstances we described?

Her Loving Parents
(Via E-Mail)

Question: My young daughter was recently diagnosed with autism. She does not function well socially and is extremely introverted, but we have noticed that she reacts very well to small animals. We reported this to her therapist who suggested that we get a dog or cat as a pet. We know that most religious people frown upon having pets, but we hate to see our daughter suffer and want to do anything that would make her happy. Would it be okay to own a pet in the circumstances we described?

Her Loving Parents
(Via E-Mail)

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/ask-the-rabbi/q-a-incongruous-and-unbecoming-part-ii/2011/10/26/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: