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Go Daven – Minyanim everywhere!: The worldwide searchable database for Orthodox Minyan information, including minyan locations, times, and contact information. http://www.godaven.com

 

My Zmanim – Instant Zmanim for anywhere in the world. http://www.myzmanim.com/search.aspx

 

Mikvah.org is the place to explore the many facets of Mikvah and Family Sanctity. Search the Mikvah directory for a Mikvah around the globe. http://www.mikvah.org/directory

 

Shabbat.com – Host guests for Shabbat, or set yourself up for a Shabbat meal, wherever in the world you may be. http://www.shabbat.com

Jewish Learning

Naaleh.com – Na’aleh means “let us ascend.” Naaleh provides a free, comprehensive learning program for the motivated Jewish adult, who views Jewish learning as the key to continuous spiritual growth and elevation. http://www.naaleh.com

 

Rabbi Leff.net – Rabbi Zeff Leff, Rav of Moshav Matityahu, and one of Israel’s most popular Torah educators, expounds on current issues and timeless topics http://www.rabbileff.net

 

Torah Any Time – TorahAnytime.com records Jewish lectures worldwide and uploads them to their website for the entire world to watch for free, enabling people all over the world to leran Torah, with the option to stream or download the video, or have an audio only file http://www.torahanytime.com

 

Torah.org – The Torah Cyberspace Center! Jewish educational material, including a range of Torah archives, and popular e-mail classes that are sure towill meet your interests. Happy Exploring! http://torah.org

 

Tziporah Heller.com – Rebetzin Heller is internationally known as an outstanding scholar of Jewish Studies as well as a gifted lecturer; her areas of expertise include textual analysis of Biblical literature and Jewish philosophy with an emphasis on the teachings of Maimonides and Maharal. She is also particularly well known for her courses devoted to the role of women in Judaism and analyses of the lives of women in the Bible. http://www.tziporahheller.com

 

Halachipedia.com – Where Halacha meets Wiki! A literal encyclopdia of Jewish law. http://halachipedia.com

Israel Advocacy

Honest Reporting – HonestReporting monitors the news for bias, inaccuracy, or other breach of journalistic standards in coverage of the Arab-Israeli conflict. http://honestreporting.com

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Questions and Answers

Ask the Rabbi: Easy as א-ב-ג?
Dear Rabbi Simon,
I hope you fasted well yesterday.
Thank you for the insights into the Kinnot, making them easier to understand.
In the afternoon, I was listening to a shiur on Eichah on Torahanytime.  As an aside, the speaker mentioned that the 1st perek of Eichah is the source for the order of the alef bet as we know it.  Other chapters also follow the alef bet chronology but with ayin en peh interchanged.
He quoted Rabbi Shimon Schwab as his source.
Although he did not elaborate on this, surely Sefer Tehillim predates Megillat Eichah by centuries.  Several psalms are written in the alef bet order (e.g.
psalm 119).
Can you please clarify?
Thank you & best wishes.
PhilippeHi Philippe
***
TY for your sophisticated Q.
I have also heard that the question of the sequence of samekh and 'ayin is subject to dispute. It seems that there are indications that in Paleo-Hebrew the order is reversed from what we know. It is alleged that chapters 2, 3 and 4 of Eichah (chapter 5 is not alphabetical) reflect the original order. Of course, as you say, ch 1 conforms to the order with which we are family.
You are right that Tehillim predates Eichah, however a critic can claim that the order was redacted to bring it in line with the accepted/preferred sequence. This is particularly true for ch. 119, where each of the 8 vv per letter are their own group, and each set of 8 vv. can easily be repositioned. The question is in Ps. 34 or 145, if the internal logic of the passage sheds light on the correct sequence. In Ps. 34, some claim that the v. starting with the letter peh makes more sense to follow the verse starting with samekh (due to the common appearance of the word ra'). I am not convinced that this argument is compelling.
I will stick with the mesorah, that 'ayin belongs before peh. Best to look before speaking.
Rabbi Rashi Simon
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