Roaring Lions and Goring Oxen

Rabbi Avrohom Sebrow Kimby wandered the streets of Ladispoli, Italy, in early November. It was evening, and few people were around. Kimby didn’t get into any trouble. It was a good thing too, since Kimby was an escaped circus lion. Residents who found out about the escaped lion roaming their residential streets were obviously nervous. […]

Dinim on Damages

Rabbi Avrohom Sebrow The following stories and the rulings that follow are based on the Chashukei Chemed and Pninei Halacha on Bava Kama. They are not intended to be relied on for practical halacha. 1. Shimshon had a venomous snake as a pet. One day, it managed to escape its cage. Levi was walking by […]

Breaking Point

Rabbi Avrohom Sebrow The Chasam Sofer says that studying Seder Nezikin can save a person from coming to harm, both physical and financial. If someone, chas v’shalom, has a harsh heavenly decree against him, that decree can be fulfilled by just learning the laws of damages, instead of actually coming to harm. Studying Seder Nezikin […]

Of Cats, Cattle, and Craters

Rabbi Avrohom Sebrow There is a worrying epidemic called “high-rise syndrome” that affects many New York families. Cases are more prevalent in the summer months. One New York City hospital reported three to five new cases a week in the summer. The sad part is that, according to experts, it is almost entirely preventable. The […]

A Stamping Ground

Rabbi Avrohom Sebrow Boruch: Mazel tov on finishing Seder Nashim and half of Shas with daf yomi! Shimon: Thank you. Our continued learning should be a tremendous source of merit for the salvation of klal Yisrael. Boruch: Amen. In honor of your siyum, I want to show you this Israeli stamp I just bought. It […]

Bar Mitzvah Bewilderment

Rabbi Avrohom Sebrow The following story takes place many years ago in Europe. It’s a true story that just hasn’t happened yet. Shimon: My father told me that my bar mitzvah is this week Parshas Noach. Boruch: Mazel tov! I can’t wait for the yummy kichel after you lain. Shimon: I don’t think I’ll be […]

Marrying for Money

Rabbi Avrohom Sebrow Is there anything wrong with a man marrying a woman solely for her money? What about if money is just one of a man’s criteria? What if he needs his in-laws to support him while he pursues his college degree? What if he needs his in-laws to support him while he learns […]

Egg-sploring the Halacha

Rabbi Avrohom Sebrow With the enormous amount of responsa that have been written over the past thousand years, there are countless ones about some rather interesting questions. How about this one: What is the halacha if a man offers his bride an egg instead of a ring under the chuppah? Are they halachically married? Who […]

Kiddushin Conundrum

Rabbi Avrohom Sebrow At a typical wedding, there can be no doubt who the kallah is. But hundreds of years ago, a chassan got himself into a jam due to a lack of specificity. Tosfos (Kiddushin 52a) recount a fascinating story that occurred with Rav Oshaya HaLevi’s son. Details are somewhat sketchy, but the following […]

We are Hashem’s Children

Rabbi Avrohom Sebrow This time of year is designated for teshuva. We really should be paralyzed with fear because of the impending judgment. Yet, there is a contradiction. On Rosh Hashana, we enjoy festive meals. Nice clothing should be worn. Haircuts are taken in preparation for the holiday. How could there be rejoicing when facing […]