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Why Is Honey Kosher If Bees Are Not?

Dear Jew in the City, Why is honey kosher if bees are not? Sincerely, Ryan Dear Ryan, Thanks for your question. It’s an excellent question, but I’m going to explain it for those who may not know why it’s excellent. There’s a general rule in kashrus that the products of non-kosher animals are likewise non-kosher. […]

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What’s The Jewish Perspective On Pleasure?

Dear Jew in the City, What is the status of physical pleasure in Judaism? Is it good or evil? How can I tell what is too much and what is too little? Sincerely, Rob Dear Rob, Thanks for your question. Now I’m going to ask you one: do you know what musar is? Musar is […]

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Were the Jews Forced to Accept the Torah?

Dear Jew in the City, Were the Jews forced to accept the Torah? It was literally held over our heads and could seem to be given in such a way where we had no choice but to accept it. Sincerely, Simon   Dear Simon, Thanks for your question. Let’s explain it. Exodus 19:17 says that […]

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Does Jewish Law Believe That Countries Should Stop Putin?

Dear Jew in the City- Does the mitzvah of lo saamod al dam rei’echa mean we believe countries should stop Putin? Thanks, David Dear David, Thanks for your question. I think the first thing we need to do is define terms. “Lo saamod al dam rei’echa” means “You shall not stand idly by your fellow’s blood” […]

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What’s The Difference Between Halacha, Chumra And Minhag?

Dear Jew in the City- What’s the difference between a halacha, minhag, chumra and inyan? Which ones are mandatory and which are optional? Thanks, Eli Dear Eli, Thanks for your question. Let’s start with halacha. “Halacha” means law. These can be Biblical or rabbinic. The Torah gives us mitzvos – commandments – like “keep Shabbos,” […]

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