Nedarim 66: For the Children

August 06, 2015 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
  "One may use as an opening [to annul a vow] one's own honour or the honour of one's children" (Nedarim 66a). Our relationship towards our parents is different, often much different,  than that which we have towards our children. Our relationship to our parents is, at least from a Jewish perspective, based on kavod, (generally translated as honour but more...
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Nedarim 64: I Didn't Mean It

August 04, 2015 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
  "If only I would have known.." After many pages delineating the parameters of various vows the Talmud discusses when and how one may annul a vow. "Heter nedarim porchin b'aveer, the annulments of vows are floating in wind and they have nothing to rely on" (Chagigah 10a). Nonetheless our Sages outlined parameters in which a vow may be annulled. We might call it giving someone a second...
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Nedarim 62: Can You Leave Me Alone?

July 31, 2015 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
It is always fascinating how a most technical, even obscure, discussion can reveal and lead to a discussion on fundamental concepts of Judaism revealing much about our Sages and life in general.   One such example is a discussion relating to defining the precise date of the end of summer (something that is all too soon!). Such date is important to establish the parameters for one who takes a vow not to drink wine until the summer is over....
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Nedarim51: What a Party!

July 30, 2015 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
It is not uncommon for someone to lose their job due to something stupid they do at an office party. People are much more apt to let their guard down at parties, something that can come back to haunt them. Yet even before one gets to the party there is great potential for discord, beginning with the invitation list. With Tisha BAv just behind us we are most cognizant how disastrous inviting the wrong person to a party can be. "Rebbe [...
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Nedarim 50: What Have You Been Drinking?!!?

July 23, 2015 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
Sadly, some people need stimulants--be they (legal) alcohol or (illegal) drugs--to stimulate themselves and put themselves in a good mood. Others, however, can get "high" naturally, something that often surprises those in the former camp.     The Talmud relates how a certain matron, upon seeing the cheerful countenance of Rav Yehudah, exclaimed "moreh vravi[1],  a teacher and drunkard!"...
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