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March 15, 2013

Fearing Leaven, Haredim Get State To Ban Lake Kinneret Water During Passover

Chazon_IshThe pumping of water from Lake Kinneret will be suspended at the end of next week because haredim fear that it could contain hametz, leaven, which is forbidden for consumption of during the upcoming Passover holiday.

Chazon_Ish
The Hazon Ish, Rabbi Avrohom Yeshaya Karelitz

Fearing Leaven, Haredim Get State To Ban Lake Kinneret Water During Passover
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com

The pumping of water from Lake Kinneret (also known as the Sea of Galilee) will be suspended at the end of next week because haredim fear that it could contain hametz, leaven, Ha'aretz reports, which is forbidden for consumption of during the upcoming Passover holiday.

In 1995, then-Deputy Jerusalem Mayor Rabbi Meir Porush was able to get Israel’s water authorities to agree not to supply Jerusalem with water from the Kinneret during Passover. At the time, Porush said he made those arrangements because of the concerns of haredi yeshiva students who followed the opinion of the Hazon Ish, Rabbi Avrohom Yeshaya Karelitz.

“If a crumb fell into the Kinneret, whoever used that water would have failed [to avoid] leavening on Passover,” Porush reportedly said.

The same arrangement started first in the haredi city of Bnei Brak, where the Hazon Ish had lived until his death in 1953.

“Cutting off most of the state from the Kinneret water supply is a continuation of the process of unbridled extremism that has been forced on us by Haredi politicians. Their demands show Judaism in a ridiculous and ignorant light. The extremism manifests itself in areas such as kashrut, conversion, discrimination against women and more,” Rabbi Uri Regev, the head of the religious freedom organization Hiddush said.

Sefardi haredi leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef permits water from the Kinneret to be consumed on Passover.

Many Ashkenazi haredi rabbis used to allow it, as well, but as the haredi movement has become ever more extreme, the number of those rabbis has declined markedly.

The basis for the ban appears to be the fear that visiting Christian pilgrims will cast bread into the water during the holiday, and that bread will somehow find its way into haredi homes.

That fear does not take into account modern water filtration and purification systems long in place that purify and filter the water before it is released into the country's water delivery system.

The Hazon Ish is famous for having ruled that that closing an electrical circuit to create current (or allow it to flow) was boneh, building, and opening a closed circuit was the corresponded to destroying. Both acts are prohibited on Shabbat, the Jewish Sabbath.

Much like his ruling on Lake Kinneret water, the Hazon Ish's opinion has no actual basis in scientific fact, but it is the ruling Orthodox and haredi Jews follow when they abstain from using electricity on Shabbat.

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There is a lake from which the local water is drawn that becomes tap water in Miami Beach. Back in 1997 I remember a local rabbi, of sharp mind (not known for scholarship, but he has quite an analytical mind, and his recollection, cross-referencing and application is spot on) raised a simple question by pointing out that should someone drop a piece of bread into that reservoir during Pesach the law is crystal clear by applying the most basic laws of Pesach that the water running out of the tap would be forbidden, and since the concern is great ... Well, you get the idea.

He said he raised the issue to at least one posek, who summarily dismissed it. But he told over the story with the sense that no posek had the balls to rule on it because of the mass implication. He too, regardless of what he saw as obvious, used the tap water on Pesach in the lack of an official declaration of the prohibition, relying partly on doubt (which can only be relied upon in rabbinical prohibitions, which is not the case here) and strongly on "well, wattya gonna do" (not his words).

I never forgot that. It is indeed hypocritcal to discriminate in principal between other prohibitions of this calibur and this one. In practice, fallacy is more apropos to describe the situation.

So I have mixed feelings here: If they're gonna rule on it, then they have to throw out the chametz with the lake water (or is it the other way around). On the other hand, did they have to rule on it? And if so, why now? It wasn't that hard to see even for an amateur student.

Israelis may not realize it, but during Passover, their water comes not from the Kinneret, but from underground wells. “It has been like this for years, and will continue this year,” said MK Moshe Gafni

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/165830#.UUMOLFdPgqI

The Fifth question:

Why is it that for all other days we can get our water from the Kinneret and underground wells but for the days of pesach we can only get our water from underground wells.

The basis for the ban appears to be the fear that visiting Christian pilgrims will cast bread into the water during the holiday, and that bread will somehow find its way into haredi homes.

This has nothing to do with it. There is a (rabbinical) law that prohibited foods that will later be permitted (e.g. hametz on Pesah) cannot be diluted by any ammount. Thus, if there is any hametz in a pot, no matter how big, all its contents are forbidden. This would also apply to a lake, or even the ocean.

If the water supply into the processing plant is contiguous, without a separate reservior for holding, then all water being drawn from that forbidden source on Pesah is forbidden. If the outgoing supply from the processing plant is still contiguous up to the tap, then all water coming out of the processing plant that is drawing water from a forbidden source on Pesah is also forbidden.

To permit it in such a case while prohibiting a large pot into which fell one single grain of barley would be hypocritical.

If there is no contiguity then the ruling is wrong or being made out of speculative ignorance. But if the ruling is being made because the decisor does not know how the processing works, then he is not fit to be a decisor, for verifiable information is not in doubt it simply needs to be verified before being dealt a ruling.

There is no such word as "decisor". It is used all the type by Orthodox Jews to refer to halachic authorities, but there is no such word in the English language.

"time" not "type", but the bottom line is that there is no such word as "decisor" in the English language, so stop using it as it is jarring and annoying.

There are issues of sefek sefeka, but for hametz on Pesah (I don't know about Sephardim, but for Ashkenazim any suspicion is enough to prohibit, and the Shulhan Aruch was published in tandem by the Beit Yosef and the Rama, each for their respective communitis, so Ashkenazi halacha applies to Ashkenazim in Israel.

There is still an issue of she'at hatzorech, times of great need, or she'at ha-dehad, times of great difficulty, that could be relied upon for laxity, but we are a Jewish State.

Uri Regev is a narrow minded Israeli who understands neither democracy nor halacha and is not fit to be a Reform rabbi. There are women rabbis in the U.S. who understand the application of halacha more correctly, and obviously the principles of democracy, who are far more qualified to acknowledge what it is their communities accept and what is legitimate or even epirically correct for those who follow the halacha.

Again, if the water is contiguous from the lake to the tap at any point there would be a hypocricy to permit the water while ruling to prohibit on any other hametz issue.

Regev needs to be replaced by a true scholar of a Reform seminary, and specifically of western (not middle-Eastern) culture who understands the concept of liberty in a democracy.

The only questions are, why they ruled now and whether they understand the process line from the lake to the user at home.

Chametz crumbs roam the air. You might not be able to see them. Yet they certainly get in your mouth.

The basis for the ban appears to be the fear that visiting Christian pilgrims will cast bread into the water during the holiday, and that bread will somehow find its way into haredi homes.


This has nothing to do with it. There is a (rabbinical) law that prohibited foods that will later be permitted (e.g. hametz on Pesah) cannot be diluted by any ammount. Thus, if there is any hametz in a pot, no matter how big, all its contents are forbidden. This would also apply to a lake, or even the ocean.

Maskil –

Before Passover, any hametz in the water can be battuled (negated). The hametz water problem only exists during Passover itself. And when the original ruling was made, the fear was that Christian pilgrims in Israel for Easter would cast bread into the Kinneret (perhaps as a religious act).

Israelis may not realize it, but during Passover, their water comes not from the Kinneret, but from underground wells. “It has been like this for years, and will continue this year,” said MK Moshe Gafni
------------------------------------

Animals and insects find food crumbs all of the time and bring them underground to their nests. This potentially pollutes the water table.

I think they should bann themselfs from planet earth for pesach,or just go into the desert for 8 days until they can eat chumetz again, every year they go deeper and deeper into insanity as though they arent insane enough.

"There is no such word as "decisor" [...] there is no such word in the English language."

Someone is trying to shoehorn it into the language via Wikipedia:

Posek (פוסק, , pl. Poskim, פוסקים) is the term in Jewish law for "decider"—a legal scholar who decides the Halakha in cases of law where previous authorities are inconclusive.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Decisor

>"time" not "type", but the bottom line is that there is no such word as "decisor" in the English language, so stop using it as it is jarring and annoying.

Grammarian,

A) the first day in lexicography cheyder they teach you that a word is that which people use. In fact, that is how they make dictionaries - they collect the words which people use. So "decisor" is a word, since people use it.

B) the Oxford English Dictionary has a lovely entry for "decisor" no less than it has for "cow" and "lightning," all English words. Here it is:

† deˈcisor | deˈciser, n.
View as: Outline |Full entryQuotations: Show all |Hide all
Etymology: < medieval Latin dēcīsor, agent-n. < dēcīdĕre to decide.
Obs.
Thesaurus »

One who decides causes or controversies: a decider, arbiter.

1563 J. Foxe Actes & Monuments f. 68v/2, Thys kyng [sc. Henry II], to whom other Princes dyd so resort as to their arbitrer and deciser.
1564 N. Haward tr. Eutropius Briefe Chron. i. sig. C.vii, Two whome they called Tribuni plebis..to be peculier decisers and determiners of their causes.
1888 B. Pick in Libr. Mag. Mar. 245 They were called Saboraim, ‘Decisors’, ‘Opinionists’.

jancsibacsi: Are you really Jackie Mason in disguise? You should have been a comedian. You would have been great.

25 years ago I got a sh'ela from the New York State Water Department. (Who even know that the State had such a dept?!)

They had gotten repeated inquiries from a fellow citizen in Brooklyn wanting to know "What percentage of the NYC tap water was grain products?" The very Presbyterian gentleman who called me - I had met him before in another context - said that the Water Department didn't have a clue what was behind this question, and could I possibly explain it to them so they might answer our fellow New Yorker in Brooklyn.

I immediately recognized it as a hametz-oriented issue, and explained it that way.

I surmise that some relative of the Brooklyn guy owned a glacier, and they were working on a business model to (A) have the tap water declared chometzdik, and then (B)sell kosher LaPesah water from melted ice originating from a place where no cows were grain-fed.

I will be a good Jew and eat or drink the holiday of Passover.

BTY can we drink NY city water since it comes from above ground water and maybe somebody threw some bread in the reservoir for the fish or birds

Why are these rabbis bound and determined to reduce the laws of chometz to absurdity. Inquiring minds want to know.

Before Passover, any hametz in the water can be battuled (negated). The hametz water problem only exists during Passover itself. And when the original ruling was made, the fear was that Christian pilgrims in Israel for Easter would cast bread into the Kinneret (perhaps as a religious act).

Posted by: Shmarya Rosenberg | March 15, 2013 at 07:53 AM

Thank you. So it's not just the fear that there will be bread in the lake, but a fair conjecture (umdena) that it will be happening on Pesah. But I still maintain that the fear was not that it would find it's way into the Jewish homes, but that it would make the entire lake non-kosher-for-passover and if the water source is direct (contiguous) from the lake to the tap, there is a genuine problem (if we are going to address the issue with sincerity). But it seems that is what you are saying too. Thank you, this explains why it was given weight all those years back by the Hazon Ish, and distinguished from other lakes and fresh water sources around the world and throughout the generations of traceable history. The question is whether there are locks in the pipes or holding tanks that concretely separate the lake from the tap in the processing, and also whether anyone bothered to check.

Posted by: S. | March 15, 2013 at 08:57 AM

Very nice. Thank you for sparing me the trouble of searching for a full Oxford English dictionary. Well stated and comprehensive. Bravo.

""""


Chametz crumbs roam the air. You might not be able to see them. Yet they certainly get in your mouth.

Posted by: Hat | March 15, 2013 at 07:39 AM
Animals and insects find food crumbs all of the time and bring them underground to their nests. This potentially pollutes the water table.

Posted by: Dov | March 15, 2013 at 07:58 AM
"""""

With these two bits of deep wisdom anyone can out extreme any heredi rabbi

Maskil - A scholar of Western culture will be aware of the form of argument know as reductio ad absurdum which appears in Pre-Socratic philosophy.

If there is a (rabbinical) law that provides that any amount of water (however large) can be contaminated by any amount of prohibited foods (however small), then it follows that water from a lake, or even the ocean cannot be permitted if there is hametz in it. This is clearly absurd so that this supposed law cannot be correct and that there must be some amount of water which effectively dilutes hametz.

If you are to assert that the argument of reductio ad absurdum has no place in rabbinic Judaism, then you will be admitting that Rabbinic Judaism is absurd.

Barry - reductio ad absurdum doesn't mean "absurd", it means arriving at a conclusion that is logically impossible from a premise, thus rendering the premise false. For example if a premise results in the conclusion that A is a bird and A is not a bird, then the premise is false. This shows up all over Shad.

Posted by: Barry | March 15, 2013 at 10:16 AM

According to the halacha, in order for there to be a prohibition a) the hametz needs to be intact (like a loaf of bread or a roll) but once crumbled and disperesed it is immediately wasted in water or the wind, b) it must be an amount perceivable to the naked eye (air particles do not count), c) It is clear from Shmarya's clarification that one does see a concern if the hametz was over-rided by quantity before Pesah, nor does one suspect that it "may be added," rather the problem exists if complete chunks of hametz are certainly being deposited on Pesah. This answered several of my questions going back to the first post. I have no idea if it is know that Christian pilgrims are throwing complete chunks into the lake on Pesah or if the link of water supply is direct (contiguous) flow/stream/pumpline all the way from the lake to the tap in the Jew's home. It appears that even the Hazon Ish would not have worried himself with this had either of those two concerns been eliminated.

I'll be more direct than Barry.

Maskil... you are dumber than fucking rocks. Your concerns are childish and have no relevancy in a modern society.

Water treatment plant operating engineers need to concern themselves with water quality parameters like fecal coliform counts, total suspended solids, total dissolved solids, pH, metals concentration, and dissolved oxygen concentration, ammonia, turbidity, etc.

They don't need to be bothered with shtuss like "what is your grain concentration?" or "are there locks in your pipes separating your chametzidik lake from your treatment plant?"

Grow the fuck up!

Posted by: Maskil | March 15, 2013 at 07:38 AM

Don’t get all hyped up, in all the generations Rabbis always understood that they need to protect Jews from any outside influence. Therefore, they will do and rule whatever they see as a possible disruption in the continuity of their rigid views.

Yourself, in explaining what might be the reasoning behind this ban, shows that you are not any better than the Rabbis. A real maskil would laugh at you, when you tell him with conviction, “if there is any hametz in a pot, no matter how big, all its contents are forbidden. This would also apply to a lake, or even the ocean”, this episode is the preeminent periscope to peek into the crazy Jewish religious world.

They don't need to be bothered with shtuss like "what is your grain concentration?" or "are there locks in your pipes separating your chametzidik lake from your treatment plant?"

In a Jewish country? They damn certainly need to concern themselves with this.

I think they should bann themselfs from planet earth for pesach,or just go into the desert for 8 days until they can eat chumetz again, every year they go deeper and deeper into insanity as though they arent insane enough.

Posted by: jancsibacsi | March 15, 2013 at 07:59 AM

The Chief Rabbinate ruled in 1967 that it is prohibited for all Jews to ascend the Temple Mount "less they tread on areas whose prohibition amounts to punishment by spiritual excision of the soul (kareth)." In line with the above ruling, we should see a move to ban hametz year round and it poses a stumbling block to the average Israeli Jew, lest they consume is on Pesah (also kareth). Moreover, the violation of the Sabbath is also a punished by spiritual excision (kareth), and it is high time the Rabbinate declare a temporary ruling to remove the Sabbath from the days of the week, for the time being leaving only six days in the week, and thus remove the stumbling block from the blind, secular Israeli, who might otherwise violate it. It's all the same line of thinking.

I would sooner declare the pilgrims rodfim - or worse! A rodef only takes a life, these pilgrims are trying take the Jewish soul!

I agree with Dapper Danny and Joe Field.

The fact that any person today would concern himself with such minutia, and waste so much time and energy analyzing and postulating such idiotic drek, is a sad commentary on religious Judaism.

Posted by: Maskil | March 15, 2013 at 11:24 AM

At this point, it is like arguing (in pig latin) with the mad hatter while spinning down the rabbit hole, after taking a tab of windowpane.

Either Maskil is the most exquisite troll or he is beyond all hope.

If only they put so much thought and effort into the laws between man and man, as the ones between man and god.

Somehow the fundamentals of judaism are missing, instead what we have now is some kind of superstitious tic.

In line with the above ruling, we should see a move to ban hametz year round
Posted by: Maskil | March 15, 2013 at 11:24 AM

Two years ago I issued that ban. Everyone laughed, said I was full of shit, and yeah, that was a ban that would come soon enough.

I agree with Dapper Danny and Joe Field.

The fact that any person today would concern himself with such minutia, and waste so much time and energy analyzing and postulating such idiotic drek, is a sad commentary on religious Judaism.

Posted by: WoolSilkCotton, I am a work of art as well as a sports and rock superstar | March 15, 2013 at 12:32 PM

Look, I led by saying that I saw favor in not addressing the issue. But one thing is undeniable: If you're gonna rule about a pot that one drop of hot chametz touched it, and later a kosher-for-passover meal was prepared in it, calculating whether the entire pot became chametz (because we don't know how much was in the drop) and whether there is dire need to permit it, or any other halachic law for that matter, then if - and I stress this, IF - you address the matter of the tap water from a lake source, it is hypocritical to not apply the same principles. That's all. You can't pick and choose. Better a rabbi who rules that something is forbidden and then violates his own ruling, for he is at least holding himself to the same standard that he holds everyone else to, he sees himself as other violaters who are either fallable or evil, but this is better than one who pretends to apply the rule of halacha in case 'a' but then ignores the principles of halacha in case 'b'. That is hypocricy.

Posted by: Maskil | March 15, 2013 at 05:06 PM

You're forgetting a basic klal. We don't make life more difficult for a community unless it is absolutely necessary to do so.

Your pot involves a small number of people. The lake involves 8 million people.

The risk of actually consuming any real hametz is as close to zero as one can get in the case of the lake.

Any normal posek would brush aside the question of hametz water.

The Hazon Ish did not just as he did not with electricity and many other things. His goal was to make sure that things did not change, that the status quo remained in place, and that Jews were as much as possible ghettoized.

His lake ruling was political just as his electricity ruling was.

And believe me, if God actually does exist, the Hazon Ish was made to pay for what he did.

Shmarya, you're analysis of the Chazon Ish is way off base. To accuse him of playing politics is ridiculous. He avoided politics, and held no official position within the community. His extreme positions more likely arose from his non-involvement in communal affairs than politics. So much for speculation- but what about the facts? Did the Chazon Ish in fact forbid the water of the Kinneret?

Rabbi Eliezer Waldenberg permitted, and R' Ben Zion Abbah Shaul, while recommending to prepare water before Pesach when possible, permitted the water after the fact or in cases of duress. (In other words, if you can't/didn't store enough jugs of water before the chag, you can drink the water anyway.) Neither of these two responsa mention that the Chazon Ish forbade the water.
Nissin Karelitz, the nephew of the Chazon Ish also permits the water AND HE CITES THE CHAZON ISH HIMSELF AS A SOURCE!

Sources: Or LeZion, Responsa, Vol. 3, Chapt. 8.
Tzitz Eliezer, Vol. 17. Chapt. 23.
Chut Shani, Pesach, Chapt. 7, Page 99.

What did Jews do 2000 years ago? Or in Poland 150 years ago for that matter? There were no modern filtration systems at all, and obviously bread crumbs can find their way into wells or reservoirs or upstream from wherever you draw as easily as they can get into the Kinneret. Did Jews not drink water at all during Pesach? If this is then case then I think that no food at all should be consumed during Pesach. All Haredi Jews should have their mouths shut and should be on an IV drip for 8 days. And during Shabbat, all Haredi Jews should be bound tightly to an immobile board. That way there is no chance of violating Passover or Shaabat. I am afraid it is the only way.


Crumbs are considered destroyed upon contact with water. Even bread crumbled into the wind is considered destroyed as if it was burned (for the laws of Pesah). The problem is when intact pieces of hametz enter the water source on Pesah, due to the extreme ruling for prohibitions that will pass, which precludes any halachic negation by being over-ridden by quantity of any proportion. 2,000 years ago it is hardly conceivable that a full chunk of bread would reasonably end up in a lake, because of it's value. People probably died daily everywhere of starvation. Furthermore, it seems that the basis of the prohibition was specifically due to the custom of Christian pilgrims, which apparently was known to involve throwing sizable chunks into the lake on the holiday itself. Meaning that the consideration was made that with near certainty a) it would happen (not just a "concern"), and b) the hametz would be inserted in a way that was not considered "destroyed," leaving only negation by over-riding quantity (which doesn't apply to hametz on Pesah). This would explain the differentiation between this case and a water source in Europe 100 or 150 years ago. It would also explain why no one bothers to check with processing plants to verify if there are pipe locks in the processing line in other parts of the world where the water is drawn from an outdoor reservior (because the concern that "if somoene dropped a loaf of bread into the lake it could be a problem" is not enough to be care).

Now that Ephraim is claiming that the Hazon Ish was not behind this, I don't know whether he was political. But I do know (right or not right - a mechanism to avoid the problem could easily have been made in the building of the water processing plant) that right now what is happening is political. They are flexing their political muscles to express disdain for the success of a coalition that does not include them. This, what is going on now, is without any doubt politically motivated (even if it is halachically sound - and if it's halachically sound it was irresponsible of these same rabbis to not contribute to a simple solution during the construction of the current infrasture and also ridiculous that considering that the topic had already been raised that the Jewish government didn't take its own steps to avoid this problem at a time when any building over a certain amount of stories must have a "Shabbos elevator" - I mean, come on!).

This isn't the first year that wells are being used for Pesach instead of Kinneret water. It's distinctly possible that they don't want lake water under any circumstances, no matter how it's treated. The irony of it all is, the aquifer may also have water that's leached in from the lake.

Tishrei: Anybody got some pieces of bread? We need to go out and do Tashlich!

Nisan: No, don't use the water from the lake. People throw bread in there, it's chometz!

>>Posted by: Ephraim | March 16, 2013 at 04:34 PM<<

Does idiocy run in your family?

First of all, moron, use a dictionary. Look up the use of the word "political." If this is too difficult your addled mind to handle, ask an educated adult.

Secondly, the Chazon Ish was highly political. His rulings are full of teshuvot that are really political statements, not teshuvot. From the size of his shiurim to his idiotic ruling on electricity, over and over and over again, he ruled POLITICALLY, not halakhicly.

Lastly, why not call Rabbi Porush – who is clearly the source of my statement – and inform him that he does not know how to learn. I'm sure when he's finished destroying you, your own inabilities will be extremely clear to you.

Shmarya,
You're a journalist, right? Why did you accept Porush's claim at face value without verifying it?
Now you're claiming that the Chazon Ish's extreme shiurim were political? He was preceeded by Yechezkel Landau- was he political? And when Yechiel Michel Epstein ruled leniently that one may turn on lights on Yom Tov- a ruling based on a misunderstanding of electricity- he was political too? Or was he just mistaken?

We're talking about Pesach here. Pesach has always brought with it extreme chumras. It's not about politics. The 19th century ancestor of the Satmar Rebbe, Moshe Teitelbaum would observe stringencies just for the sake of their stringency- even if he himself thought it was ridiculous. There is a trend amongst some to accept all sorts of crazy chumras specifically on Pesach. I don't know if there's some mystical rationale for this, but it's definitely not politics.

Posted by: Ephraim | March 17, 2013 at 01:36 AM

That is if someone chooses to be mahmir. Here these rabbis don't run the water plant or the utilities ministry. They are imposing this ruling on others. Never has any tzaddik imposed an undue stringency on another person or community, not even for Pesah. Even if the tap water is a direct stream/flow/pump all the way to the lake, the choice to use the Rabbinate's authority to redirect the water source for all of Israel this year, when no change has occurred since last year, is clearly a political ruling based exclusively on political motives.

>>"You're a journalist, right? Why did you accept Porush's claim at face value without verifying it?
Now you're claiming that the Chazon Ish's extreme shiurim were political? He was preceeded by Yechezkel Landau- was he political? And when Yechiel Michel Epstein ruled leniently that one may turn on lights on Yom Tov- a ruling based on a misunderstanding of electricity- he was political too? Or was he just mistaken?"<<

You're a complete and total idiot.

The understanding of electricity you call "mistaken" is much more correct than the understanding of dozens of haredi rabbis – like the 5th and 6th Lubavitcher rebbes, for example – who completely misunderstood it.

You see, shoteh, there is reality, there is a real world, there is science, there is fact. And as Rabbi Shlomo Zalman Auerbach noted, in this case, those facts support the rabbis who permitted electricity, not those who forbade it.

You want to live in a cult? Get a set of orange cotton robes and go look for one in the backwaters of India.

All religion is politics.

Making religious rulings designed to alter other people's behavior is politics.

Doing things to attract people away from synagogue A toward synagogue B is politics.

If what I understand about both the relevant Jewish law and the water on earth is true, you could hypothetically ban ALL water on passover.

Maskil

Thanks for all the halachic info.it was very interesting.


For the know nots much of Israels current water supply comes from water desalinization. they have two large plants already on line and building more.

Shmarya wax correct. R. S. Z. Auerbach does hold that there is really nothing wrong with actively using electricity on Shabbat but rules that it should not be used. I can even understand the absurd ruling even for modern Ortho Jews. Shabbat and holidays would be extremely different if everyone was on the phone,using their iPad ........

Rabbi Yitzchok Zilberstein, son-in-law of R' Elyashiv also permits the water and gives several reasons for doing so. See his Chishukei Chemed on Pesachim. He too does not cite the Chazon Ish. What comes out from all of this is that the mainstream haredi poskim have ruled leniently. So who actually rules strictly?

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