Oct 23, 2011

Interesting Posts #312

Interesting Posts #312

1. What's under The Me'Arat HaMachpela, Part 1.

2. An unusual Tiyul, and Praying For Rain

3. Bat Yam Promenade

4. Man Claiming To Be Mashiach Interrupts Rav Ovadiah

5. How Long Should Hakafos be? - I was thinking about writing about this as well. My kids davened in a vasikin minyan and said there were about 200 people there. i davened in a shul other than my regular one to avoid the legnthy shlepped out hakafos (and leining). I was told about another local shul that a friend stopped in by at about 9:30 pm to see what they were doing as he heard them singing as he walked by - they were still doing the hakafos but only about 15 people were dancing while 85% of the shul had either left early or [mostly] were waiting along the sides. One could say that one day a year people can show some extra patience and respect, but I think there is an issue of tircha d'tzibura, and people just don't want such long hakafot. Is it any less respectful to want hakafor that last 5 minutes each, or 10 minutes each than wanting hakafot that last 15 or 20 minutes each, or longer?

6. Do Politicians Really Believe What they Say?

7. Baseball and the Jews

8. Bein Hazmanim Advice to Kollel Yungerleit

9. He Learned To Love Chazzanut

10. Keshet Cave

11. The Kotel HaKattan


  1. It is your blog and you obviously may do as you please, but I find it somewhat offensive to feature an atheistic jew; even though the cause he supports (OWS) and the topic of the post has some redeeming jewish value. Just want to voice my protest.

  2. As far as Hakafot on Simchat Torah go; I usually go to a quick Vatikin Minyan (like the one Moshe Hollander organizes every year at Zichron Moshe, on the corner of Refaim and Raziel in RBS-Alef) where each Hakafah takes about a minute, and we finish the entire Tefillah (including Musaf) by about 7:30 AM.

    Then I go home to make Kiddush and eat something; and then go out (with my children) to dance at as many Hakafot as I want to.

    That way, I do not encounter any Halachic problems, and I can join whatever Hakafot I wish (and I can rest from Hakafot whenever I wish, which was especially important this year since I was recovering from pneumonia).

  3. Re hakofos length, I think you are quite correct basically.

    A hakofoh means circling the bimah/almemar once, the same thing it meant a few days earlier when hakofos were performed during hoshanos. To dance around the bimah thirty times singing one song seems to me to be actually performing thirty hakofos (which loses the symbolism, al pi kabboloh for example, of making davka seven, the same way davka seven are done on Hoshanoh Rabboh).

    Also, it might be of interest to you that in minhag Ashkenaz, just a limited number of people get aliyos on Simchas Torah day, not everyone.

    More information re Simchas Torah practice according to Minhag Ashkenaz can be seen in the Machon Moreshes Ashkenaz luach, to which my site has a link. There was also an informative post related to this a few years ago at the Guess Who's Coming To Dinner blog.

  4. I think that the first post should be called, "What's in The Me'Arat HaMachpela, Part 1". Me'arat Hamachpela is under the structure which now stands on the site. In the story, Michal Dayan goes into the cave itself.


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