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Posted by Kiasu on November 09, 1999 at 14:19:59:

In Reply to: Seventh Sign-Hall of Souls-The Guf posted by Tim Crews on January 10, 1999 at 03:54:06:

Dan Kerchner from Silver Spring. Maryland wrote:

Dear Rabbi,

I recently bought a new coat. I took off the price tags but I left on the label on the outside of the sleeve
that said the name of the designer. The other day I was in a Jewish book store, and the woman working
there told me that halachically one should take all of the labels off a garment before you wear it. Can you
explain what she was talking about?

Dear Dan Kerchner,

Carrying an item in a halachic "public domain" is prohibited on Shabbat. Of course, you're allowed to wear clothes outside on
Shabbat because you don't "carry" your clothes, you "wear" them.

But what's considered "clothing?" Something that's normally removed, like a price tag, is not considered part of your clothing.
So it's forbidden to "wear" a price tag outside on Shabbat, because you're not really wearing it, you're carrying it.

Regarding manufacturer labels, it depends. If it's a tag which people remove (for example, a "Cheapo's Bargain Basement"
label) then it's like a price tag and must be removed before Shabbat. But if it's a label that people wear - such as designer labels
intended to be worn as part of the clothing - then you don't have to remove it before Shabbat. Since people usually remove the
label (even a designer label) from the sleeve of a suit jacket, you should do so before Shabbat.

Keeping Kosher in Kosherland

Contents

David Waxman wrote:

Dear Rabbi,

I was on Malchei Yisrael street in Jerusalem last Friday shopping for kugel and salads for Shabbos. I found
two non-fleishig deli-type places that had what I wanted. Neither of these places had a certificate of
kashrut. In one place, the clerk told me that all of the ingredients had the b'datz hechsher [kosher
certification of the Rabbinical court]. Both of these places were filled with customers who looked quite
observant. Thus, it seems that people are relying on strength of reputation for the kashrut of these
establishments. Put another way, "everyone eats there." Is that enough? Does it make a difference how
"frum" and religious the neighborhood is? Does it matter if you are a local resident and know the
proprietors?

Dear David Waxman,

Certainly if you know the proprietor personally as a knowledgeable, G-d-fearing Jew, you may eat there. Furthermore, if you
don't know the owner personally, but the owner has a reputation of reliability among knowledgeable, observant Jews, then you
may rely on that (provided you have no evidence to the contrary).

The simple fact that a store is in a religious neighborhood, however, is not an indication that it's kashrut can be relied upon.

Which reminds me of a story: A woman once entered a deli and asked to see the kashrut certificate.

"Don't worry about it!" said the man behind the counter.

"But how do I know if it's kosher?" she asked.

The man pointed to a black-and-white photo hanging on the wall. "You see that?" he said, gesturing to the angelic face of an old
man engrossed in Talmud study. "That was my father!"

"Look," said the woman, "If it was the other way around - if he was behind the counter and your picture was on the wall - I
wouldn't ask for the kashrut certificate."

Who is a Goof?

Contents

Ed wrote:

Dear Rabbi,

What is the "guff," or is there such a term in Jewish history or tradition? I saw a video entitled "The
Seventh Sign" and it mentioned the "guff" in relation to the Hall of Souls. I want to know if it is purely
fiction or not. Thank you.

Dear Ed,

The "guff" is a term the Talmud uses to refer to the repository of all unborn souls. Literally, the word "guff" means "body."

The Talmud says, "The Son of David (Mashiach) will not arrive until there's no more 'soul' in the 'body.' " This means that there
are a certain number of souls in heaven waiting to be born. Until they are born, they wait in a heavenly repository called "the
body." The Mashiach won't arrive until every single one of these souls has been born into the physical world.

This teaches that each person is important and has a unique role which only he, with his unique soul, can fulfill. Even a newborn
baby brings the Mashiach closer simply by being born.

Sources:

Tractate Yevamot 62a
Tractate Avodah Zarah 5a


HOPE THIS IS USEFUL TO YOU ALL.

Love, Light & peace

Kiasu


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