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Monday, October 11, 2010

It's hard to be a בן נח II

My wife sent me a fascinating link Noahide Halacha 101 or Meet the Adams Family which details a conversation with someone who tries to keep the ז' מצות בני נח. You can see from the conversation how complicated it is. Here is 1 excerpt:

“This problem went even further,” John continued. “Could we eat in a restaurant where forbidden meats may have contaminated their equipment?”

I admit that I had never thought of this question before. Must a gentile be concerned that a restaurant’s equipment absorbed eiver min hachai? Does a Noahide needs to “kasher” a treif restaurant before he can eat there? Oy, the difficulty of being a goy!

“How did you resolve this dilemma?” I timidly asked.

“Well, for a short time our family stopped eating out,” he replied. “You could say that we ate only treif at home. My wife found the situation intolerable – no MacDonald’s or Wendy’s? Although I know that observant Jews do not understand why this is such a serious predicament, but please bear in mind that we made a conscious decision not to become Jewish. One of our reasons was that we enjoy eating out wherever we can.

“So I decided to ask some rabbis I know, but even then the end of the road was not clearly in sight.”

“Why was that?”

“I had difficulty finding a rabbi who could answer the question. From what I understand, a rabbi’s ordination teaches him the basics necessary to answer questions that apply to kosher kitchens. But I don’t have a kosher house – we observe Adamite laws. As one rabbi told me, ‘I don’t know if Noahides need to be concerned about what was previously cooked in their pots.’”

What a fascinating question, does the din of טעם כעיקר apply to a גוי? This is just 1 example. These kinds of questions come up on every facet of life.


At 6:45 PM, Blogger The Leader, Garnel Ironheart said...

Although I would be guessing, here's what I'm thinking the answer is:
Just like we rely on government supervision to ensure that cholov akum is not mixed with non-kosher milk (as per Rav Moshe's teshuva), it might be possible for a Ben Noach to rely on government supervision which prohibits cruelty to animals.
Or one could restrict oneself to organic meats which would avoid that issue.

At 9:02 AM, Blogger academic said...

Thanks for the info, really helpful.

restaurant equipment

At 7:08 PM, Blogger Chaim B. said...

Question seems to depend on R' Chaim's chakira (in the ch. al harambam) whether ta'am k'ikar is a new chiddush din or an extension of the underlying issur of ma'achalos asuros. IIRC R' Chaim held it is a chiddush din.


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