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Author:  EA
E-mail:  not available
Date:  1/18/2004 1:07:00 PM
Subject:  Halacha....
Message:  Honorable Rav,

    I would first like to thank you for answering not only my questions but those of everyone else as well. You're caring for others' well being is truly amazing. Now to the questions! I have asked before along with others about gelatin. I have many questions and although some have been answered before on youre site, some clarification would be helpful.

1) Why, if by halachic authority (shulchan aruch) gelatin is ruled kosher, do most rabbeim rufuse to say so? And more, why has nobody, including yourself, put a hechture on any products that have gelatin in them?

2) Personally, i trust your psak in the matter and only have questions based on prior "yeshiva brainwash" as you might call it. However, my real question and the main basis for this email is on what HaRav Ovadia Yosef has to say in the matter of gelatin. I mean no offense and for sure I am not implying that his psak is of a higher level than yours, I only inquire because it is my family's backround to hold by him and i feel as if i would be breaking some sort of unwritten "family minhag". Therefore, his psak halacha is very important to me. Furthermore, Morrocans (as i am) sometimes hold differently from other sefardim (as in rice on pesach) and maybe this could possibly have an effect.

3) It may be a little off topic but I have a final question. Although this is probably quite naive and uneducated, why can't klal yisrael as a whole simply choose many different, highly trusted rabbaim from all different backrounds (ashkenaz, sepharadi, chassidic, lubavitch) to be in a counsil and decide the current laws of kashrut for all of klal Yisrael as a whole? I mean, would'nt it be easier and even more important, provide a stable infrustructure for kashrut, as opposed to now where everyone holds by someone else?

These questions are just a few things that have been on my mind and I felt that only through you could I find not only the answers, but an unbiased opinion to the halachot and minhagim. You're time and effort in this matter is greatly appreciated and I would like to thank you in advance.
                                                                                    With Respect,
          EA
   
Reply:  1) We have always listed items with Gelatin as Kosher. Other people and organizations will need to answer for themselves; today to you and everyone else, and eventually to the Heavenly Court. There are opinions that are not certain that it is Kosher, but the way in which they pick and chose their opinions are just random.

2) If Rabbi Yosef is your Rabbi, you must follow him. That includes women not wearing a wig, but rather covering their hair with a hat, and various other rules. If you just follow him as that supreme Rabbi, then you need to realize that there is not really such a concept.
Furthermore, there is no real Moroccan Minhag on Rice. Any Moroccan can drop that one, unless they made a Neder.

3) That will happen when Moshiach comes. Believe it or not, God set up the world this way. There is deep meaning behind Rabbis arguing on Halachah. Unfortunately, we have too many non-Rabbis or nonqualified ones, sticking their opinions in, too. If the Rabbis were to do as you suggest, it would get worse than it is now, because the strongest, most arrogant one would be in charge. Sort of like a Mafia.
AA


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