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The Torah Learning Library of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah

Iggros Moshe A to Z

Episode 34: Jewish Identity – What’s in a name?

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on March 6, 2019

Rav Moshe has a series of surprising responses to questions about Jewish names, and the importance of holding onto this distinction. Rabbi Linzer explains that Rav Moshe chose a strict and rational halakhic perspective instead of giving weight to the Midrashic tradition of “lo shinu et shemam.” To learn the teshuvot along with Rabbi Linzer, follow the links below: Iggros Moshe EH 3-35 About using English names Iggros Moshe OH 4-66 Naming after an English name or finding a Hebrew equivalent Iggros Moshe OH 5-10 Giving names in the vernacular…

Episode 33: Jewish Identity – The Kippah, Part 2

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on February 28, 2019

Rabbi Linzer looks at teshuvot about times when you may be inclined to remove your kippah and asks whether you should. Also addressed – the association between the kippah and davening. To learn along with Rabbi Linzer follow the links: Iggros Moshe OH 2-95 Removing your kippah at the movies Iggros Moshe – YD 2-33 Taking off your kippah for mixed dancing Iggros Moshe YD 4-11 On the prohibition of bechukoteihem lo teileichu Iggros Moshe – OH 4-20 Section 14 Davening with an uncovered head…

Episode 31: Jewish Identity – The Kippah, Part 1

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on February 26, 2019

What are the halakhot of wearing a kippah? Is it a minhag chasidut or a halakhic obligation? Can you accept a job in a place where you can’t wear a kippah? Rabbi Linzer looks at Rav Moshe’s answers to these questions and more.…

Episode 30: Jewish Identity – Jeans v. Bekishe

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on February 26, 2019

Rabbi Linzer looks at a teshuvah about wearing clothes that conform to social norms or preserving “Jewish” dress. To learn along with Rabbi Linzer follow the link: Iggros Moshe YD 1-81 Wearing clothes of the general society…

Episode 29: Immersion – Ear Plugs, Fillings, & Braces

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on February 5, 2019

Rabbi Linzer looks at some teshuvot about different kinds of chatzizot. How does Rav Moshe’s conceptual understanding of halakha shape his psak in these cases? Iggros Moshe YD 1-98 Is an earplug a chatzizah? Iggros Moshe – YD 1-97 Is a filling in a tooth a chatzizah?…

Episode 28: Immersion – Showering After Mikvah & Tevilah on Day 7

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on January 30, 2019

Rav Moshe stakes out dramatic positions against major poskim on two questions: Can a woman shower after the mikvah? Can a woman go to the mikvah during the day on day seven, if she won’t be able to go at night?…

Episode 27: Immersion – Swimming Pools and Mesiras Nefesh

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on January 29, 2019

Rabbi Linzer looks at a host of teshuvot about mikvaot and explains the creative tools that Rav Moshe employs to assume that someone with parents who were not observant was not conceived during niddah. To learn along with Rabbi Linzer follow the links below: Iggros Moshe YD 4-17 Section 19 Concern about marrying someone conceived during niddah (a baal/baalat teshuvah) Iggros Moshe YD 1-10 Can you immerse in a swimming pool with a filter?…

Episode 26: Halakhic Methodology – Pasken the Shoel, Not the Shayla

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on January 25, 2019

Rabbi Linzer looks at a wide range of teshuvot to demonstrate a critical component of Rav Moshe’s philosophy of psak – a dual emphasis on paskening based on svara and based on circumstance. To learn along with Rabbi Linzer, follow the links to the teshuvot below: Iggros Moshe EH 1-64 a woman who would be endangered by pregnancy Iggros Moshe EH 3-22 more about a woman who is not permitted to become pregnant Iggros Moshe EH 3-14 testing a man’s semen Iggros Moshe YD 3-91 the prohibition of summarizing and translating teshuvot Iggros Moshe YD 4-38 the rules of psak and disseminating piskei halakha without the full reasoning  …

Episode 25: Halakhic Methodology – Features and Limitations of Rav Moshe’s Approach

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on January 25, 2019

Rabbi Linzer looks at two teshuvot – about a Cohen going to medical school and a woman going to the mikvah wearing earplugs – to identify the limits and features of Rav Moshe’s philosophy of halakha and psak.  …

Episode 24: Halakhic Methodology – Rav Moshe’s Philosophy of Halakha

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on January 21, 2019

Rabbi Linzer looks at Rav Moshe’s introduction to his responsa, in which he outlines his philosophy of halakha and psak, and explains how he feels comfortable publishing his teshuvot.…

Episode 23: Gender – Rav Moshe on Feminism

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on January 18, 2019

Rabbi Linzer looks at a famous teshuvah of Rav Moshe that takes on the challenge from feminism to the role of women in halakha and Jewish life. Why are women not obligated equally? Can halakha change to accommodate shifting social realities?…

Episode 22: Gender – Can A Woman Be A Mashgicha?

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on January 16, 2019

Two teshuvot about a woman serving as a mashgicha – granting hashgacha to a restaurant. Is it allowed? Is there a concern about serarah? Rabbi Linzer asks and Rav Moshe answers.…