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From: Russell Hendel <rhendel@saber.towson.edu> Date: Sun, 17 Sep 2000 00:00:26 -0400 (EDT) Subject: The one time that Love is Bad Jay F Shachter in v33n55 wrote a rather beautiful defense of the VALUE of falling in love. Notwithstanding the eloquence of this posting it **is** halachically wrong. It is so wrong that Jay himself must admit he made a (tiny) omission. Love is strong (as Jay said). It does make people aware of God (As Jay said). It does lead to a rich understanding of life (As Jay Said). But certainly Jay is aware that there are certain types of physical-emotional relationship which superficially resemble love but are really physical and escapist. Surely we all know this. Surely we also know that the ONE time when we should NOT be thinking of love is when an unbearable, irreversible and catastrophic event happens in a persons life. Is not death of a close loved one such an unbearable irreversible and catastrophic event. Would not love at such a time be merely a drunkedness to wash away the pain---a physical escape which would override the very love that Jay so eloquently praised. THEREFORE, Jay should not be surprised when Jewish law states that >>A person whose dead relative stands before him before the funeral >>has the status of an ONAYN and besides the customary laws of mourning >>is even exempt from saying the shma and all other prayers. Indeed a person >>in such a state could not really have intentions much less love. But then Jay **must** agree that since on Tisha Beav we have the status not of mourners but of ONAYN that it is prohibited to 'escape'. Certainly Jay must grant this is the one time during the year when love and flirting should NOT take place. Perhaps Jay is surprised at Chazal's harshness in classifying Tisha Beav as ONAYNUS. But we visibly see that we are not in Jerusalem; we visibly see that we wish a temple and sacrifices but cannot offer them--indeed we visibly see death itself and immediately enter that irreversible shock state called ONAYN. Certainly then Jay must join in condemning flirting and all other 'escapes' on Tisha Beav. Our goals should be to sit down and cry that we have no temple, no sacrifices, no priests we can trust, no great sages, no prophets to ask questions to, no full fulfillment of Biblical promises. Respectfully submitted Russell Jay Hendel; Phd ASA Dept of Math Towson University Moderator Rashi is Simple http://www.RashiYomi.Com