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Thursday, April 14, 2016

Guest Post: Shabat Table Derech Eretz

Shabbat Table Derech Eretz
a guest post by Mr. Cohen

Many years ago, I visited a very fine Orthodox family
for the Shabbat daytime seudah.
Something happened there that surprised me.

When the mother summoned her children to the
table to hear kiddush, she had to ask them nine (9)
times until they finally complied with her request! 

Since I was merely a guest, I just kept
my mouth shut and never spoke about it;
but it made a very bad impression on my mind,
and I still remember it more than ten years later.

This incident violated several Torah principles:
[1] honoring parents
[2] VeAhabta LeReacha Camocha
[3] the obligation of hearing Kiddush
[4] unnecessarily delaying a mitzvah
[5] Torah law obligates guests to obey their hosts

This incident was especially upsetting to me because
complying with the mother’s request was so easy:
there was no monetary expense, no distance to travel,
no need to learn a new skill, and no need to endure pain.

I wondered: If this is how slow they are to perform
an extremely easy mitzvah, then how slow would
they be to perform a difficult mitzvah?

When the mother (or father or host or hostess)
summons the people of the house to the table
to hear kiddush, every Jew in the house should
comply IMMEDIATELY, without needing to be asked
a fourth time or a third time or even a second time.

Similarly, when the mother (or father or host or hostess)
summons the people of the house to the table to wash
their hands, every Jew in the house should comply
IMMEDIATELY, without needing to be asked a
fourth time or a third time or even a second time.

Finally, when the father or mother says that it is
time to recite Birkat HaMazone, all Jews present
should stop talking and quickly proceed to the table,
without needing to be asked a second time.

When the father or host is singing [a zemer],
the best Derech Eretz is for the children and
guests to help him sing by singing along with him. 
The second-best Derech Eretz is for the
children and guests to remain silent and listen
while the father or host is singing.
The third-best Derech Eretz is for the children
and guests to speak to each other in low voices
that are not loud enough to interfere with
the singing of the father or host. 
The worst Derech Eretz is for the children
or guests to speak to each other in loud voices
that interfere with the singing of the father or host.

“One [New York] Times opinion editor, Matt Seaton,
even admitted last year [2014 CE] that the newspaper
has a policy of veering away from criticism of Palestinians.”

SOURCE: Final sentence of article titled: “New York Times Editor:
Coverage of Israel Most Criticized Aspect of Opinion Pages
by Shiryn Ghermezian, 2015 October 14, found in: The Algemeiner.
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Ancient Roman historians connected Jews with the Land of Israel and Jerusalem:

Rambam Rejected Childless Messiah:


Why Muslims Hate Jews:


Forgotten Oppression against Jews:



Seven Times Stronger
(a quick quote about American anti-Semitism during the Holocaust):

How a Reform Rabbi Become Orthodox (true story):


<b>Why Barak Hullman left Reform Judaism and became Orthodox:</b>

How to Convict the New York Times
(of unfair bias against Israel):

Why Israel’s 1967 Borders are Undefendable:

How Torah Can Defeat Terrorism:
Like all things Islamic, the Palestinians have
long-been officially above criticism in the West…”

SOURCE: Useful idiots for Palestine by Pat Condell,
2011 November 4 (available for free on YouTube)

Pat Condell is an atheist, who was born in Ireland around
1950 CE, and raised in England as a Roman Catholic,
and educated in Church of England schools.
He has no Jewish ancestors and no religious beliefs
that might cause him to favor Jews.

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Batya Medad said...

Did the psrents seem surprised by their children's lack if compliance? Maybe it is one of those families where the parents say "soon" but dont move quickly

Mr. Cohen said...

Batya Medad, I don't remember, it was many years ago.

Batya Medad said...

Kids pick up a lot from their parents, so you never know...