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This question is URGENT: My parents are concerned with my swimming, so they want me to join the swim team this summer. It is mixed swimming, so women are going to be there, and I am a boy, so I do not feel comfortable going. What is your personal opinion, and halachic opinion on this? Again...an answer is urgently needed!

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Hi. I have the following question: Is it yichud if there are three girls/women (2 teens and one older women) and one man (older) in a house together? The older man and women are married, and one of the girls is a granddaughter. The older couple is not shomer Torah and mitzvos, the other two girls are. It would be for one night. If you need any other details, I am happy to supply. Thank you so much!

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Is it permitted for a married man to travel on multi-day trips together with just his mother by car, train, or plane? I am an artist and my mother is my marketer. Before I was married, we used to travel all the time to sell my art, but covid put a hold on that. Then I got married and now my wife and I have a baby. All four of us live together. My father is long divorced from my mother and we are not in contact with him. My mother and I want to resume our travels to sell my art. My art is the sole source of income for our household. My wife wants to stay home with our baby and doesn’t want to travel now. She does not mind my mother and I traveling together and encourages us to do so in order to make money. I have several questions. Are there any modesty issues with us sharing a hotel room or being in the car together for many hours far from home? Or sitting together on a plane or train? Are extra activities we do while traveling such as sightseeing or walking on trails or eating together in restaurants (kosher ones) a allowed? And is it a problem that my mother, being so young looking and energetic, is often mistaken by strangers for being my wife or sister?

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So as we know, one of the reasons women are prohibited from wearing pants is because of the biblical law against cross dressing. Based on this commandment, would there be a problem with a man wearing a garment that is commercially produced for a man to wear, but has a style associated with women’s clothes (e.g. something pink, floral print, men’s rights, or a kilt)?

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Can one have a chavruta partner for Torah study who is a platonic friend of the opposite sex (considering yichud laws are properly observed)?

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Dear Rabbi, Is there a Mother's Day in the Jewish religion? I know that this Sunday (May 8, 2022) will be Mother’s Day in the United States and I wonder if Judaism has something similar. Thanks

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I have an aunt I haven’t seen in 33 years. When I was a little girl, I was very close to her, spending more time with her than my mother, who worked almost all the time because my father was not a part of my upbringing and contributed nothing to our cost of living. Back then, she was a second mother to me. Then when I was 11, she moved far away to marry a man I never met (they later divorced), and I haven’t seen her since. She had a daughter from her marriage to him (she is my cousin; I met her one time when she visited my hometown, but I’m not close to her). Ever since my aunt moved away, I have talked to her on the phone regularly and she is still my favorite person. But our relationship is long distance and that’s what I’ve been used to. She recently told me she really wants to see me again and spend at least a month with me, and I am willing to stay there even longer if I can get there, even possibly several months. But I can’t afford a flight there. I live on a fixed income and don’t have a job. With my disability, I’m not capable of much work. Nowadays, people do Go Fund Me drives for all different causes. I’ve been trying to save my money, but it’s not enough and I’ve been having to spend some of it on emergencies. I need at least $700 more than I have now to take a trip to see her. Both she and my mother are retired and can’t afford to help me. She says once I get to where she lives, I can stay in her home for free for as long as I want and also use her car as much as I wish. She is in good health and says she expects to live a long time more. She just misses me a lot and has never seen me grown up. Do you think it’s okay for me to beg others (such as my local community or social media friends) for the money just to travel? As a rabbi, do you think that is ethical?

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Shalom I have a question on why so many people are punished with death in the Bible. Some examples are Elijah calling on bears to maul children who made fun of him. That seems pretty thin skinned of him to me. Also, why was Tamar threatened with burning at the stake, especially with two children in her belly! I understand she committed adultery, but death by burning at the stake seems really extreme to me, and would be roundly condemned today. And what of her unborn children?! Not only that, but look at the history of the Israelites destroying whole civilizations as they took the land. They even killed children and cattle. What was their sin? Moreover, killing someone who violated the sabbath seems pretty harsh as well. Is there any Jewish person who doesn't violate the Sabbath, if even in a small way? Should they be killed as well? All in all, death seems a very casual thing in the scripture. And then there is the idea that a father can sell his daughter into slavery. Would anyone do so today? Thankfully not. It is illegal and morally repugnant to do so. I simply don't get this. I believe in a Higher Being, but the one in the Bible is hard for me to believe in. I want to believe in the scripture, but these things are a road block for me. If anyone did any of these things today they would be roundly punished and condemned. Why would a just and loving God permit and condone these things? Can you help me please? This is an honest search for truth and answers. Thanks for your time, Rich