50) Q: You mentioned in prior halachos that it is better not to bring children to shul if they will disturb the Tzibur and the like, but at the same time it is appropriate to bring children to shul for chinuch.
What if someone's child constantly comes to shul every shabbos and doesn't daven or anything but just collects candy and doesn't stop talking and asks questions, all at the expense of the surrounding people's kavana being disturbed-can someone approach that person and request he no longer bring his child to shul?
does it make a difference if it's between Gavra L'gavra, psukei dzimra, or the amida? Does the age of the child matter? what would be the best hanhaga on this situation?
A: There is no question that the child that is disturbing the Tzibbur does not belong in Shul, and the father is not even being Mekayem the Mitzvah of Chinuch by teaching a child that it's ok to talk, run, and otherwise disturb in shul.
I don't think the age matters. Any child (or adult for that matter) that cannot keep quiet in shul and causes others to lose kavanah and be unable to daven, should not be in shul.
That being said, the Rav or Gabbai should be consulted as to the best way to approach this father and make him aware of his child's disturbances. It is not something to get into a Machlokes over, and should be done diplomaticallyand tactfully.
Unfortunately, many shuls deal with this issue of talking and other disturbances during davening (by children and adults) and it is something that really must be dealt with, as it is blatantly against Halacha and for some reason many are not careful in these matters.
51) Q: After z'man krias shema what am I not allowed to say? Can I still say birchos krias shema after zman krias shema until zman tefilla? What about the bracha Go'al Yisroel? Until when may that be said?
Are the zmanim halachos different for men and women?
A: If zman Krias Shema passed, one should still recite Krias Shema with Birchos Krias Shema (Including Ga'al Yisroel), as long as it is still before Chatzos (halachic midday).
After Chatzos, the third Parsha of Krias Shema must be said, as the mitzvah of mentioning Yetzias Mitzraim is applicable all day. The rest of Krias Shema should also ideally be said in order to accept Hashem's reign. Birchos Krias Shema are not said after Chatzos.
Women are exempt from Krias Shema. However they should say the first Posuk. Many women do in fact have the Minhag to say the entire Krias Shema (and many Poskim do encourage them to do so).The Eishel Avraham and other Poskim say that even women who have accepted upon themselves to say the entire Krias Shema, are not obligated in saying it before Zman Krias Shema.
52) Q: One last question on this subject. So what then is the term Sof zman krias shema referring to?
A: I am not sure I understand your question exactly. The term Sof Zman Krias Shma is the deadline, or latest time when Chazal said is ideal to have said Krias Shema by then. One who misses this zman is referred to in the gemara as "Me'Uvas Lo Yuchal Liskon"- a mihap that cannot be corrected, as you can never make it up again ever.
Though one should still recite Krias Shema (to getthe Kabalas Ol Malchus Shamayim etc.) he still missed out on the Mitzvah B'zmano.
53) Q: Can you please explain to me [ the meaning of the term, and the Halacha regarding ] bracha samucha L'chaverta and if in fact one must follow this din with tefillas haderech?
A: Bracha HaSemucha L'Chavertah is a concept used when certain Brachos don't start with "Baruch Ata Hashem..." In order to make them into "complete" Brachos, they are said immediately after a Bracha that does start with "Baruch Ata..." and therefore will be considered as if both Brachos had a "beginning" and an "end" with the format of a Bracha. Tefilas Haderech is a great example of this as it starts without the "Baruch Ata" and only ends with "Baruch Ata...Shomea Tefila". Therefore, if possible, try saying a Bracha first (e.g. Baruch Ata..Asher Yatzar...Rofeh Chol basar U'mafli La'asos or "Al Hamichya" or "Borei Nefashos". Some Poskim also allow a Bracha Rishona such as SheHakol Nihyeh B'Dvaro or similar) and say the Tefilas haderech immediately afterwards.
54) Q: I have two Taleisim that are torn/frayed and one that is small. Can I take the one that is small and repair the other two?
A: I am assuming you are asking if it is permissible to remove the Tzitzis strings from one Tallis Katan and place them on another.
According to the Gaon of Vilna, the Komarna Rav (Shulchan HaTahor) and others, if the Tzitzis are still Kosher, even though they are small or frayed, it is best not to remove them from their original beged, as doing so would render that Beged Pasul and that would be a Bizayon (dishonor) for the Tzitzis, which are Tashmishei Mitzvah.
Other Poskim, including the Mishna Berura (Siman 15:3) seem to permit the removal of Tzitzis from the Beged, as long as it is being done to enhance the Mitzvah of Tzitzis (I presume your case would be the same din, though the case he refers to may be a bit different.)
Ask a Rav though,for a final Psak.
In any case, Tzitzis which is no longer being used, may be discarded if they are first wrapped in a plastic bag. Some are machmir to bury them, or use them as book marks in Seforim (Kitzur Shulchan Aruch)
55) Q: [ Clarification of his original question] I'm asking if can cut up the begged of the tallis that is to small and repair the other two that are fraying ?The one is my Shabbos and the other one is my week-day tallis . Does the material of the begged ( the one that is two small ) have to be the same as that of the others ? For example wool and not wool.
A: Oh, I misunderstood. I don't think there are any restrictions about what may be done to the Beged of the Tallis. I also don't think that the beged must be of the same material, unless it will look funny, in that case perhaps it will not be Kavod for the Mitzvah. There is a concept of "Talis Na'eh - a Nice Tallis" to satisfy "Zeh Keili V'Anvehu" , so it should look nice.
56) Q: When saying the first pasuk of Kriat Shema, why not just close ones eyes rather than hold your hand over your eyes?
A: I have seen some people actually do that. However, the Minhag is to use the hand to cover the eyes. Perhaps to demonstrate that we are doing something to ensure we don't look around. Also see answer to Question #37 above.
57) Q: Is there any Halachic basis for the accepted minhag among virtually all frum/chareidi males to wear black [or dark colors] -- black suit, hat, shoes--on Shabbos (except perhaps for some Sefardim, including minuscule numbers of Sefardi m'kubalim, who wear white), when indications by Chazal appear to point to the opposite, i.e., white being most apropriate to Shabbos, a yom ora v'simcha, etc., a day that we welcome -- and are likened to -- the mal'achimwho are said to be in white?
A: Although in the times of Chazal it was indeed the minhag for Bigdei Shabbos to be white, this hasn't been the Minhag of most of Klal Yisroel for many centuries already. I don't know when or why it changed, but I will give you some food for thought which I found while researching this topic.
The Shulchan Aruch (Siman 262) says that one is obligated to wear special and nice clothing for Shabbos, and does not mention white (or any color). The Be'er Heitev says that the Minhag of the Arizal was to wear 4 white garments (to signify the 4 letters of the Shem Ha-Vayah of Hashem). Obviously he did this for kabbalistic reasons, and perhaps today, when we don't do many kabalistic things that Chazal did, this was also something that got lost.
The Magen Avraham (Siman 597) maintains that wearing white, black or any other color is dependant on each town's minhag. Furthermore, he says that [today's days] wearing white is not Chashuv. Perhaps in the times of Chazal it was more respectful to wear white, while today black is definitely a more respectful color suit to wear. (think judges robes, etc.)
Rav Chaim Kanievsky in his Sefer Shoneh Halachos (Siman 262) says that if by wearing white today it will be "Mechzi K'Yuhara" (Halachis term for inappropriately flaunting one's religiousity or doing things that give off a "holier than thou" attitude) it is better not to wear white. However, he does add that if doing so in the confines of one's own home where it doesn't stick out of the crowd, or if worn in an area where people don't "notice" anything different about him it is ok.
See also Tosefos Bava Kama 37a Dibur Hamaschil Harei, where they say that even animals recognized when people were dressed for Shabbos!
It is definitely important to dress special for Shabbos. Each person should do this as best as they can and in the way that they feel is right, within the confines of Halacha of course
Follow up Question from same reader: How do we know that "in the times of Chazal" it was the minhag for bigdei Shabbos to be white? Is there a source that can be cited for this as there are for the ot her citations? Which "Chazal" are we talking about - of which period and which areas? This information would be most helpful.
My response: Ok, I found a sefer called "Otzar HaYedios- Asifas Gershon" on topics related to Shabbos, and in there he brings every source imaginable to anser your question about white clothing. I recommend you get the Sefer, but I will quote for you a few sources:
1) The Elya Rabba says that the Rabanan in the time of the Gemara wore white garments on Shabbos.
2) The Mateh Moshe (Siman 414), The Kitzur Shlah (Siman 135) say to wear white on Shabbos.
3) The Aruch Hashulchan (Siman 260:1) says that today, wearing a white shirt on Shabbos suffices.
4) The MaHaram Chagiz (Siman 543) says that wearing white on Shabbos is a Tikkun (rectification) for Aveiros related to Arayos (sins of a sexual nature)
5) The Shu"t Panim M'Eeros (Vol. 2 Siman 152) says that today that it isnt normal to wear white clothes, it should not be worn on Shabbos either.
58) Q: Why must one sit by Ashrei by Mincha? and does that mean you can stand by the two Ashreis by shachris?
A: The Sefarim mention to sit by Ashrei by Mincha. By Shacharis, one is usually sitting anyway during Pesukei D'Zimrah so it doesnt need to specifically mention it. The reason for sitting by Mincha for Ashrei (which is a Minhag Tov, and not a Halacha) is because before one begins Shemona Esrei, he/she needs to sit for a few moments and get into the right frame of mind to stand before Hashem in Shemona Esrei (as we learned a little while ago in the Halachos). By Shacharis and Maariv we sit anyway for the Pesukei D'Zimrah and Birchos Krias Shema, but by Mincha many times one runs into Shul and delves right into Shemona Esrei without "sitting" for a moment or two, therefore the Sefarim say to sit by Ashrei and utilize that "sitting" time to get into gear for talking to Hashem.
59) Q: Can one go to a morning shiur and then daven in a minyan after sof zman teffilah ?
A: If by going to the shiur you will miss zman tefilah, You may not go to the shiur, as davening before sof zman tefilah is mandatory. In fact, one may not even learn once the time to daven arrives (even if he will daven afterwards within the proper time), unless he regularly learns at that time, and has a regular minyan that he is part of after the learning.
60) Q: Can one make the brocha for Shabbos lights over an electric light or lamp ?
A: That is a huge Machlokes HaPoskim ranging back to when electricity was discovered! Many Poskim (Shu"t Bais Yitzchok Yoreh Deah Siman 120, Rav Tzvi Pesach Frank in Shu"t Har Tzvi Orach Chaim Siman 143, Rav Moshe Feinstein, Rav Ovadia Yoseph and others),permit using an electric lamp in place of candles for Hadlokas Neiros on Shabbos, based on the fact that electric lights satisfy the 2 reasons that we light Shabbos candles in the first place: (1) Shalom Bayis (a house without lights isn't harmonious) and (2) Oneg Shabbos (a dark home isn't conducive to an enjoyable Shabbos).
Many Poskim even allow a Bracha on electric lights for Shabbos, while others say you may light it L'Kavod Shabbos but not make a Bracha on such a lighting.
Rav Shlomo Zalmen Auerbach Zatzal differentiated between a lamp that runs on electricity from the main power plant (which he held not to make a Bracha on) and a flashlight or lamp that runs on batteries (in which case he held you may make a Bracha, as the battery is like the "oil" of a candle, whereas by regular electricity it is being added by the city every second, and isn't really here when you make the Bracha)
Obviously this should only be relied upon in emergency situations when candles or oil isn't available, or in special situations where they cannot be kindled (in hospitals, hotels etc.)
Also, when relying on this, one must have in mind when turning on the electric light that it is for the sake of Neiros Shabbos.
61) Q: If throughout the day I constantly drink (sometimes sipping and sometimes a large amount) water and other liquids (minimum of several times per half hour), when do I (or should I) make a bracha acharona of borei nefashos?
A: This is a very common, and complicated, situation which affects almost all people on a daily basis.
Here are a few basic guidelines with which to determine your personal status:
1) Borei Nefashos is only made if one eats a kzayis of food or a revi'is of beverage (except wine or grape juice, which needs a Al HaGefen), within a certain time span (between 3 and six minutes, depending on different Poskim)
2) Borei Nefashos should ideally be said in the place where you ate/drank immediately following the eating/drinking, but may be said in a different location as well, and up to 72 minutes after consuming food [though you have significantly less time after drinking. According to Rav Scheinberg Shlita you ony have 30 minutes after a drink, unless you have become thirsty again, in which case the first drink is no longer satisfying you, and then you cannot make a Borei Nefashos anymore, even if it's less than 30 minutes since you drank].
3) If one is not sure if he/she is required to make a Borei Nefashos, since it is M'Drabanan, it is best to not say it. (this applies to one who forgot if it was already said as well as to one who is uncertain if he ate/drank the minimum needed in the right amount of time to qualify for requiring the Bracha Achrona)
4) In the above case, where you aren't going to say Borei Nefashos, try one of the following things instead: 1) Eat another Kzayis of food/Revi'is of drink and then make Borei Nefashos on everything. 2) Ask someone else who is making a Borei Nefashos,to be Motzi you, and answer Amen 3) Think the words of the text in your mind without saying them, as this is acceptable according to the Chazon Ish based on the Rambam.
I hope these guidelines help you determine the right thing to do in your situation.
For a more lengthy treatment of this topic see "Halachos of Brochos" by Rabbi Yisroel Pinchos Bodner, an excellent Sefer that I think every Jewish home should posess.
62) Q: Today in the halacha for Shabbat Kodesh, you wrote:
"While davening Shemona Esrei, one's hands should be in the same position they would be in were the person speaking to a human king, dignitary or president. (During Shemona Esrei we are standing "L'fnei HaMelech- in the presence of the King [of Kings]")"
While davening Shemona Esrei, I am usually holding the siddur. May I presume that this is OK, or should I put the siddur down on some kind of surface and put my hands at my sides? I can do this but it's less convenient for me. Also, is the halacha different for men and women?
A: You assume correctly, and holding the Siddur is 100% acceptable, as that is necessary for your Tefilah. There is no difference between men and womenregarding this Halacha
63) Q: [In your Halachos you] stated that ones hands should be as visiting a king or President (hands at your sides or in front on top of each other) when davening the Shemona Esrei. I was taught that even if one knows it by heart one should read it from the Siddur.
A: 1) There is a difference of opinion amongst the Poskim whether it is better to daven from a Siddur or if it's better to daven with your eyes closed and say the words from memory (for someone who knows it by heart). The consensus of the contemporary Poskim seems to be that each individual should daven the way that he/she has more Kavanah. Some people have better concentration when their eyes are closed and nothing around them can distract them, other people cannot concentrate without seeing the words in print. Someone recently told me that he heard from Rav Simcha B. Chen Shlita, a talmid ofRav Moshe Feinstein Zatzal, that Rav Moshe used to daven by heart during the weekday Shemona Esreis and used to daven from a Siddur for the Shemona Esreis of Shabbos.
2) Although the Siddur can be on a table or a Shtender in front of you, there is nothing wrong with holding your Siddur in your hands while you daven, and doing so is a perfectly acceptable position for your hands to be during Shemona Esrei.
64) Q: [ You wrote earlier that one who skips parts of pesukei D'Zimrah must say those things he skipped, after davening].The Aruch Hashulchan paskins you should not repeat what you skipped during Pesukei Dezimra (saw it in the Aruch Hashulchan & heard [name of Prominent, accepted Posek shlita] tell someone this L'halacha).
A: True, the Aruch HaShulchan Paskens like this, as does the Bach (Siman 52) and some other Poskim. However, the following Poskim do indeed write that one needs to repeat everything they skipped if possible, and many contemporary Poskim pasken like this as well:
Chayei Adam Klal 19 Siman 5
Kitzur Shulchan Aruch Siman 14:7
Shulchan Aruch Harav Siman 52:1
Rav Chaim Kanievsky Shlita (Orchos Yosher page 95. Worth reading the entire paragraph)
Rav Simcha Bunim Cohen in his Sefer "Laws of Daily Living" (Page 304)
Although from the Mishna Berura it isn't clear how he paskens, the Chofetz Chaim does write clearly in his sefer Machane Yisroel (which he wrote for jewish soldiers in the Russian army) Chapter 1:8 that it is worthwhile to say all the parts that you skipped. (Rav Chaim Kanievsky and others say that for those soldiers he was lenient and only wrote "it is worthwhile" while for regular yidden it is indeed a chiyuv to say all that was skipped.
Follow up to above answer: I personally spoke to [aforementioned prominent accepted Posek shlita] yesterday regarding what you had told me you had heard from him.
He told me that he had never paskened not to make up the parts of pesukei D'Zimrah that was skipped. He said (as I told you) that it is a Machlokes haposkim with no clear Hach'ra'ah of how to pasken L'maaseh.
When I pressed him further for a psak halacha how I should be noheg L'Maaseh, he told me that if the skipped parts will be said with kavanah (which he clarified to mean equal to the kavanah that is usually present when you say it at the right time) it should be made up. But if it will be said very fast just "Abee" to make it up, it should not be davened like that.
65) Q: 1) I daven with an early minyan and learn before davening. I say brachos and karbanos before learning, otherwise I wouldn't have time to say them properly, as the minyan doesn't give enough time for them. How early is it Ok to say brachos and karbonos? If I wait for the early minyan to say them, I won't really have enough time.
2.) Is it OK to start psukei d'zimrah slightly before the minyan to get ahead start and have a little more time for them?
A: 1) Generally, the Zman for Birchos HaShachar is after Alos HaShachar. However, one who rises earlier, as long as it is after Chatzos, all the Birchos HaShachar as well as Birchos HaTorah may be said, with the exception of " Asher Nosan L'Sechvi Vina", which L'Chatchilah shouldn't be said until after Alos HaShachar. (If one actually heard the crow of the rooster, the Bracha maybe recited, even before Alos)
Birchas "Al Netilas Yadayim" is best to be said after (using the bathroom again) and washing your hands again immediately before davening. ( This is the best way to do it, if there will be a long break between when you wake up and when you start davening, as in your case since you learn before davening)
Parshas HaTamid and Karbanos should not be said before Alos HaShachar (Mishna Berura Siman 47:32). Some Poskim maintain that even B'Dieved you can't say these Parshiyos before Alos.
2) Regarding starting Pesukei D'Zimrah, there is no reason you cannot start it on your own and daven slowly and with kavanah, so you can be finished in time to join the Tzibbur for Borchu etc.
66) Q: If you're not supposed to have any hefsek "Bein G'Eula L'Tefilah" except "Hashem Sefasai Tiftach" and Ki Shem Hashem Ekra Havu Godel L'Elokeinu [as you wrote in the Halachos of November 19th] , why, in Ma'ariv are we allowed to say "Hashkivenu" after "Ga'al yisrael"?
A: The Talmud states that "Hashkiveinu" isn't a Hefsek as it also has aspects of "Geulah" in it.(as part of the Geulah, the final redemption, will be the answer to this prayer, which requests an end to our Tzaros, the removal of the Satan etc). Also, the Tefilah of "Baruch Hashm L'Olam" which a large segment of Klal Yisroel says before shemona Esrei of Maariv isn't considered a Hefsek, as it is considered a "Geula Arichta" a long Bracha of Geula (Mishna Berura Siman 236:6 quoting the opinion of Tosefos)
P.S. "Hashem Sefasai Tiftach", as well as the Kaddish between Geula and tefilah (which is said universally in Shul) , being that they are part of the required text of the davening, also are considered part of the "Geulah" or part of the "Tefilah"
67) Q: You stated last Friday that feet must be together [after Kedusha] until Hakel Hakodesh. What is source for this? Most people move the feet after Yimloch. What is your position on Rosh Hashana & Yom Kippur? There are many paragraphs between the end of Kedusha and Hamelech Hakodosh. Must feet be together throughout until the end of the beracha?
A: See Elya Rabba Siman 95:6, Aruch Hashulchan Siman 95:5.
Rav Shlomo Zalmen Auerbach Zatzal (Halichos Shlomo, Tefilah, Perek 8: Ha'arah 60) maintains that on Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur when there is a long time between Kedusha and HaKel Hakadosh, it isn't necessary to stand until HaKel hakadosh. I heard in the name of Rav Joseph D. Soloveitchik Zatzal that he held that even on Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur one must stand the entire time until HaKel HaKadosh, though I havent seen this in print and havent verified this yet.
68) Q: When davening K'Vasikin: Let's say sunrise is 6:45:30, should one say Hashem Sefsai before 30 seconds and start Baruch Atta at exactly 30 seconds or should one makes sure not to say Hashem Sefasai until 30 seconds? (When I daven K'Vasikin, I say Heshen Sefasai before the Zman and continue Baruch at the exact time. But according to what you're saying, maybe I
should wait until the Zman K'Vasikin before saying Hashem Sefasai.)
A: As we mentioned previously, it is a big Machlokes amongst the Poskim if once you said "Hashem Sefasai" it is considered you started Shemona Esrei, or it doesn't begin until you start the Bracha. See Levush Siman 111, Sefer Yosef Ometz Siman 296,Shu"t Igros Moshe Vol. 5 Orach Chaim Siman 24. I guess it would depend on how you pasken the above shaila to determine the answer to your question. I havent found any sefarim that address this exact point yet. If I find something, I will let you know. If you daven K'Vasikin often, please ask a Rav what to do. (Let me know what the Rav says please)
Follow up to above answer: I spoke to Rav Reuven Feinstein shlita today regarding your shaila, and he told me that although there is no clear Hachr'a'ah one way or another, the accepted minhag is to consider "Hashem Sefasai Tiftach" as part of the Shemona Esrei, and to start those words at exactly Netz Hachama, when davening K'vasikin.
Follow up from reader who asked the Shaila originally: I asked a couple of Rabbonim about the proper time to say Hashem Sifasai Tiftach, before or after the Zman K'vaskin. I did not get a clear answer. One Rav smiled and told me "Ee Efsher L'tazmtzem". One Rav told me - and a I heard from someone that davens K'vaskin regularly- that R' Chaim Pinchus Sheineberg Shlita is not convinced that the time in the calendars is the real Zman Kvasikin. Therefore when he davens he starts Hashem Sfaisai several seconds before the Zman Kvasikin and says it very slowly, maybe for about a minute, and then he starts Baruch. It seems like he feels this is the best west to "get" K'vaskin - even though the Zman Vaskin was either after he started or during his recitation of HashemSfaisai. It sound to me like he holds that Hashem Sfaisai can be used for both sides of the coin - preparation for Shmone Esara and as part of Shmone Esrai as well.
69) Q: I have not had a chance to look it up but I wonder does it say that [one should learn Halachos daily] means specifically two halachos rather than the class of halachos - I did not want to ask as either way the practice of two halachos per email should of course continue - I was just wondering re: the interpretation
A: Though the word Shone can mean "learn",the Sefarim translate the word "Shone" Halachos as "two" and also the word Halachos is plural , otherwise it should say " Kol Halomed Halacha B'Chol Yom". Also, The Medrash Tanchuma Parshas Beshalach Siman 20 does explicitly say " Shone Adam Shtei Halachos B'Chol Yom- one should study TWO halachos daily"
70) Q: 1. Why do we start the three steps before Shemona Esrai with the right foot and take the 3 steps at the end with the left foot?
2. I was brought up to not say Ga’al Yiroeal (when you are the chazzan) before Shemona Esrai out loud... About 15 years ago I started davening in a Lubavitch minyan and their minhag is exactly reversed. Do you know why?
A: 1) The steps before Shemona Esrei are approaching Hashem, and thus should be done with the stronger foot, as this is more respectful. When we are done Shemona Esrei we are "taking leave" of Hashem and want to show that we really don't want to leave,thus we use our weaker foot first. We will discuss this morec at length in the Halachos in the near future B'Ezras Hashem.
2) There are different Minhagim as to whether the Chazan should say "Go'al Yisroel" loud (in which case you should answer Amen, if you finished the Bracha but didn't start "Hashem Sefasi" yet. ) or low (in which case you don't hear him and thus don't need to be mafsik to answer Amen. Rav Chaim Kanievsky Shlita maintains that this minhag is a good and acceptable Minhag). The best thing to do if the Chazan says it loud, (according to Rav Shlomo Zalmen Auerbach zatzal and others) is to finish in unison with the Chazan, thus you wont be obligated to say Amen.
Basically any way you do this, you will have sources to rely on. I imagine that the Lubavitch minyan follows the Minhagim of the Ba'al HaTanya as brought in Shulchan Aruch HaRav.
71) Q: chasidim daven mincha at a later zman than those non chasidish. the question is if you are in a car or another place that you would be unable to daven mincha with a minyan before shikya but you would be able to make it to a shul that davens mincha after shkiya, what should he do?
A: You should do whatever it is that your personal minhag is. Meaning, if you yourself would not usually daven past 10,or 15,or 30, minutes after shkiah , you should not wait for a minyan in this case if they will be davening past your usual threshhold.
Follow up Question from same reader: So I guess this would apply to a situation that shkiya has passed and you are makpid to daven before shkiya or within x amount of time, and there is a group of people in a shul waiting still for a minyan, does the person that is makpid then have daven biyichidus rather than wait for a tenth person to arrive?
A: I would imagine that it applies in this case as well. Though, if by you davening B'Yechidus you will cause the other 9 people to lose out on a minyan (and for them they still have time to daven according to their minhag), perhaps its different. A rav should be consulted in this case.
72) Q: In order to make Shabbos preps easier, I decided to prep some of the veggies tonight [Wednesday night] for some of the cooking I'll do tomorrow. I know I can't prepare onions the day before, but I can't remember why! If it's not too much trouble, please refresh my memory!
A: The reason for not eating onions (and garlic, and eggs) that were peeled and left overnight is because it is a Sakanah. This is brought in the Aruch Hashulchan Yoreh Deah Siman 116:22, Kaf HaChaim Os 92, and other Poskim. It is worthwhile to be careful with this
However, if they were not totally peeled, and part of their skin (or roots) were left on, there is no problem. Thus if you only need part of an onion, you should cut it in half, and leave the other half in its skin and you may then use it tomorrow
Also, if the onion was prepared and mixed with other foods ( salt, oil, mayonaisse, etc.) there is no problem and it may be prepared and left overnight and eaten the next day.
If the onions were cooked, fried or roasted alone, without salt, oil, etc. they may not be eaten the next day.
73) Q: If one goes to the restroom after Baruch sheamer when does he make the asher yatzer?
Also would one be allowed to drink hot cocoa before davening or is that gaava'dk unlike coffee which is permitted?
If somone learns before davening may they have a sucking candy if it helps them learn (a). is it really achila (b.) is it gaava?
A: 1) This was already answered [ above] in question # 39, as follows: One may in fact interrupt Pesukei D'Zimrah to say "Asher Yatzar", if possible it should be said "Bein HaPerokim" and if one knows he won't need the bathroom again before finishing Shemona Esrei, it can be said immediately after Shemona Esrei. It may be said anytime up until a new urge to use the bathroom arises again.
2) The Poskim try to find ways to be lenient with regard to coffee with sugar, as that is normal to drink today, and isn't Ga'avah. However, I didn't find anyone that says Hot Cocoa is OK.
3) The "eating" that is prohibited before davening is only a "Kzayis" or more, according to the Poskim. I imagine your sucking candy is smaller than a Kzayis, and thus would be OK, especially if it is being eaten to help you learn.
74) Q: With all the [Tzedakah]Chinese Auctions being held around this time, please clarify these questions if you can:
1)Can Ma'aser be used to purchase auction tickets?
2) If so, if you win a prize, do you have to add back the ticket price to the Maiser you owe?
3) Do you take Maiser from a prize and/or cash that is won?
4)If you have a Pushka for a particular organization, can the contents be used to buy tickets for that organization’s auction, or does it have to be given no strings attached?
A:1) The Poskim are divided on this issue. The Sefer Hilchos Maaser Kesofim says in the name of Rav Shmuel Felder shlita that he heard from Rav Shlomo Zalmen Auerbach Zatzal, and YB"LCT,from Harav Yosef Shalom Elyashiv Shlita that it is prohibited under all circumstances.
Other Poskim maintain that as long as there is no limit to the amount of tickets being sold for the item, you may use Maaser money to purchase the tickets. This is the opinion of Rav Moshe Feinstein Zatzal (Igros Moshe Orach Chaim Vol. 4 Siman 76)
According to this if there are a limited amount of tickets being sold in the auction/raffle, then Maaser may not be used for their purchase.
Some Poskim allow maaser to be used in all instances, even when a limited amount of tickets are being sold. (Shu"t Shevet Halevi Vol. 9 Siman 200. Shu"t Teshuvos V'Hanhagos Vol. 3 Siman 289)
There are so many other opinions in this, with different conditions and stipulations, that it is impossible to write them all here. As always, for a final Psak please consult your Rav.
2) Some Poskim maintain that if you win, indeed you should give the amount of the ticket purchase to Maaser again. (Rav Moshe feinstein ibid.)
3) Rav Moshe also maintains that you must give Maaser on what you won, as it is no different from any other income you earn. He writes that it is proper to give this Maaser to the organization from whom you won the prize..
4) Once you put the money in the Pushka, it belongs to the organization, and you may not use it for any purpose from which you will benefit. If while you give the money to the Pushka, you stipulate that you are amassing this money for their auction or rafle, perhaps it would be OK. As with everything, consult your Rav for a ruling on this.
75) Q: With regard to the bowing[ by Shemona Esrei]: if I realized as soon as I finished either of the bowing brachas, that I forgot to bow, should I repeat it and bow? What should I do to fix it?
A: Bowing is one of the 8 important parts of Tefilah (See Rambam Hilchos Tefilah Perek 5 Halacha 1) and one should be careful to be scrupulous in carrying it out. However, bowing is not one of the 5 things that invalidate the Tefilah (See Rambam Hilchos Tefilah Perk 4 Halacha 1), thus if one davened and didn't bow, the Tefilah need not be repeated.
76) Q: Is there a shita (halachic opinion) that holds not to pound the heart during Selach Lanu?
A: I did not come across any shitos that said specifically not to do it (besides on days when no Tachnun is said; See Halichos Shlomo; Tefilah 11:45). However, I have actually observed some Talmidei Chachamim (of Lithuanian Mesorah) who do not do it. Rav Moshe Feinstein Zatzal did not do it. Perhaps it was not done in the Yeshivos in Lithuania, but I do not know this for sure.
After seeing the above, a daily reader and a respected Talmid Chacham, Rabbi Enkin, sent me this:
The Mishna Berura comments that our sins and misdeeds should be at the forefront of our hearts and minds when we recite the "slach lanu" blessing in shemoneh esrei. This is the source for the custom to beat one's chest when reciting the words "chatanu" and "pashanu" in the course of this blessing. There is also a Midrash which teaches that whenever one recalls one’s sins, one should pound one’s chest. This is because banging on one's chest symbolizes that forbidden desires originate in one's heart. It might also be that banging on one's chest during slach lanu is something that was adopted from the Yom Kippur custom to do so when reciting "chatanu" and "pashanu" in the course of the prayers.
While it is nearly universal practice to lightly beat one's chest during the selach lanu blessing, there are those who do not do so when reciting shemoneh esrei at a time when tachanun is not recited. This is because, according to some authoritites, if tachanun is not recited then "vidui", confessions, are inappropriate, as well. As such, there are those who never beat their chest at ma'ariv all year long, as tachanun is never recited at night. Yet, in a variation of this custom, there are those who do not beat their chest if tachanun will not be recited after the shemoneh esrei although they do beat their chest at ma’ariv. In most communities, however, no distinction is made between whether or not tachanun will be recitited after the shemoneh esrei. According to this approach one beats one’s chest at every weekday shemoneh esrei without exception.
 Mishna Berura 115:1.
 Piskei Teshuvot 115:2.
 Kohelet Rabba 7:2.
 Magen Avraham 607:3.
 Mekor Chaim, cited in Piskei Teshuvot 115:1, Halichot Shlomo 11:45; Siddur Yaavetz, selach lanu.
 Chikrei Minahgim p.49.
 Shaarei Halacha U'minhag, OC 69.
 Piskei Teshuvot 115 footnote 11.
Rabbi Ari N. Enkin
Author - Educator - Halachic Research
77) Q: In yesterday's Halacha portion you mentioned the issur to daven in front of an open TV.
What about today's computers (with the internet on, for example)? This would come to practical use every day for many of us who eat at least one meal in front of the computer as we work, and then bentch right where we are.
A: Although I havent seen any seforim discuss this directly, and it is indeed possible that a computer would be the same Halacha, I would say a Sevara that in a room with a computer on it is fine to daven for the following reasons:
A computer isn't audible and is much less distracting than a television. Also. you can control whats on the screen and (hopefully) there isnt any Kefirah, Pritzus or other impure graphics on the screen, whereas the TV spews filth and Kefira non stop, and is not in our control.
Obviously one cannot daven or bentch while actually looking at the computer screen, and of course, if it is possible to turn off the computer for a few moments, it would be best, but I don't think it would be as chamur as a TV.
78) Q: Is one allowed to take on a later Sof Zman Tefillah time (e.g. the [shitah of the] LEVUSH) or do you have to stick to the GR"A's time? also I heard one can daven later on SHABBOS! is there any truth in that?
If one missed sof zman tefillah which part of davening should or should not be ommited? [until chatzot]
A: 1) The accepted 2 times to follow is either the Magen Avraham or the Gr"a and Baal Hatanya's zman. To adopt a different Psak, i would suggest speaking to a Rav first.
2) Regarding davening later on Shabbos, please see the Halachos for July 17th 2008 , where we discussed this question.
3) If it's still before Chatzos, he should say Birchos Krias Shema, and Krias Shema. If it's after Chatzos, he must only say the Parsha of Yetzias Mitzrayim, but the Poskim say it's good to say the entire Krias Shema in order to accept upon himself the reign of Hashem. Shemona Esrei cannot be said after Chatzos, and depending upon the circumstance, a make-up Tefilah may need to be added by Mincha. Between Sof Zman Tefilah and Chatzos, most Poskim say that if he is a Meizid (he could have davened in time, but was negligent) he may not daven anymore (or he may daven and make a Tnai that if he may not daven now, the Tefilah should be a Tefilas Nedava). If it was a Shogeg (not his faukt) then B'Dieved he should daven Shemona Esrei, but he does not get S'char of Tefilah B'Zmanah
79) Q: I would like to make sure I understood correctly. From what I read, during davening Shemone Esreh one, who lives in galus - should face Eretz Israel, one who lives in Eretz Israel - should face Jerusalem and one who lives in Jerusalem - should face Western Wall. If this is correct, should Americans face South and not Mizrach (East)?
A: Yes, you understood the Halacha correctly. The ideal direction to daven is towards Eretz Yisroel, and not necessarily towards Mizrach, as most of us commonly do!
The Rama (Siman 94:2) says that the reason we (meaning those in Cracow, where he resided, as well as the rest of European Jewry) daven towards Mizrach is because we reside to the west of Eretz Yisroel.."
In the USA, we are not to the exact west of Eretz Yisroel, and thus should not face "Mizrach" precisely according to halacha, yet that seems to be the prevelant Minhag. See Aruch HaShulchan Siman 94:4.
Please consult your Rav before making any personal changes regarding which direction you daven.
80) Q:Some people in the shul in which I daven do something which I consider very annoying, and I was wondering if you could tell me if what they are doing is proper or not.
If something special is to be inserted in Shmoneh Esrei (Such as Al HaNisim or Yaaleh v"Yavoh ), they say the first few words out loud when they reach that point in their silent Shmoneh Esrei.
I suppose they're trying to make sure everyone remembers to say it.
It disturbs me because first of all it disturbs what little kavanah I usually muster, as I am distracted from the current bracha I am saying to be reminded of something else. Also, it seems that shey should be directing their prayers to Hashem, not signaling others in the middle of their tefillah. I wish they would stop doing it. It really bothers me.
A: This is another one of those sticky situations, which are hard to control.
Many Poskim do indeed say that if these "shout outs" are being done in order to remind the Tzibbur to say Yaaleh V'Yavo or "V'Sein Tal Umatar" or Al HaNisim etc. then it is OK (See Shu"t Eretz Tzvi Siman 24)
The Chazon Ish was of the opinion that doing so is not proper Derech Eretz, and even though the "shouter" has good intentions it should not be done(Dinim V'Hanhagos L'Chazon Ish Perek 4:33; also broght in Orchos Rabeinu from the Steipler Vol. 3 Page 207.)
Rav Shlomo Zalmen Auerbach Zatzal also was against this "Minhag" of every person in Shul doing this, as it is a Bizayon (disgrace) to the King [Hashem].
However, he quotes the Magen Avraham ( Siman 114:2)that says that for one person (the Shamash or Gabai) to do so when he reaches that place in Tefilah it's OK, but not the whole shul (Halichos Shlomo Chapter 8, Ha'arah 20)
81) Q: if a woman is davening with a minyan and it is almost time for zman krias shema but she is not up to shma yet, is she obligated to say krais shema at that time and then again when she is up to it in her regular davening?
Also, what responses are permitted if you are in the middle of davening "Elokai Nitzor" in shmoneh esreh?
A: Women are not obligated in Krias Shema, as it is a Mitzvas Asei SheHazman Gerama. That being said, the Poskim maintain that women should try to say Krias Shema anyway (at least the first Pasuk) in order to accept upon themselves the reign of hashem. However, even those women that do say it are not obligated to say it before Sof Zman Krias Shema ( Eishel Avraham Butchatch Siman 70:1), Therefore, she could continue davening in the proper order and not worry about the Zman.
If one did not say the first "YihYu L'Ratzon" before Elokai Netzor (as the Gr"a holds) then it is as if they are in the midst of Shemona Esrei and may not interrupt at all. If the first "YihYu L'Ratzon" was said before starting Elokai Netzor, then one may answer Amen for Kadish, Kedusha, Barchu (and all the other things permitted Bein HaPerakim of Shema), and according to some Poskim any Amen for any Bracha, as Shemona Esrei is over already.
After the 2nd YihYu L'Ratzon, according to all, any Amein may be answered, and even "Baruch Hu U'Varuch Shemo" to any Bracha.
82) Q: When praying for a distinguished Rav who is ill- Should the title "Rav" be included in a Mi Shebarach said publicly?
Is it different in a private prayer? Is it different if one is praying for his "Rebbe Muvhak"?
A: The accepted Minhag is to say the given name(s) ben the given name(s) of his mother, and not to add titles. Shlomo Hamelech, when he davened for his father dis not say "My father my master, King of Israel" rather he prayed for my "My father Dovid" (See Hagahos Rav Akiva Eiger to Shulchan Aruch 119:1). There is no difference if this is in a private prayer or in a public Mi Shebairach. Probably Dovid Hamelech was his son Shlomo's Rebbi Muvhak, or at least would have the same status, yet still he didn't use titles in the prayers.
Rav Shlomo Zalmen Auerbach Zatzal (In the Ma'amarim in back of Halichos Shlomo on Tefilah, page 370) writes that a simple title of "Reb" is acceptable, as it has become the norm.
83) Q:[You wrote in the Halachos for Nov. 24 2008 :]"It is brought in the Sefarim not to pound the heart [by Selach Lanu] on days when Tachanun is not recited. (MeKor Chaim and Siddur Ya'avetz in the name of the Shl"a)"
According to the Shla Hakodesh does thet also apply to times of day when tachanun is not said, for example maariv?
and secondly , only on days that are brought down that you do not say tachanun?or anytime a shul does not say it for various reasons?
A: I looked again in the Siddur of Rav Yaakov Emden (Ya'avetz) who quotes the Shl"a. All he says is a curt "Chutz m'Yom Sheain Omrim Bo Tachnun- except a day that Tachnun isn't recited"
If a specific shul doesnt say Tachnun for a certain reason, but the rest of Klal Yisroel does, I would imagine that is still a "Yom SheOmrim Bo Tachnun", and you would hit your chest by Slach Lanu.
As far as the Maariv before, I don't know exactly. Al Pi Sevara, I am leaning towards saying that one should do it by the maariv before.
If I find more sources for this, i will be sure to let you know. Kol Tuv.
84) Q: We have a shabbes minyan. It is common that there is no one saying a kaddish. What is the din, or the minhag, regarding someone saying a kaddish at the conclusion of shachris, mincha and maariv? Obviously someone who has said kaddish as a mourner in the past, but is not presently saying.
A: There are a few different opinions about the Kaddish after Aleinu. I will try to briefly summarize them for you.
The Arizal was of the opinion that it isn't necessary. Most Sefardim (Eidut Mizrach) follow this custom. (Sefaradim from North Africa and Europe do say Kaddish for the most part)
The Rama (Siman 132:2) requires a Kaddish after Aleinu, even if no mourner is present. The Mishna Berura explains that a) since Aleinu has pesukim it must be followed with Kaddish and b) this Kaddish was instituted to be said by a mourner that can't daven for the Amud to have an easy opportunity to say Kaddish. But if no mourner is available, someone else should say it ( even someone with parents, if the parents don't object, according to the Rama).
Rav Shlomo Zalmen Auerbach Zatzal and YB"L Rav Shmuel Wosner Shlita and Rav Chaim Kanievsky Shlita all require Kaddish after Aleinu. Rav Yosef Shalom Elyashiv Shlita maintains that it is a minhag, and can be said, but isn't mandatory.
The prevelant Minhag seems to be to have someone without parents to say a Kaddish after Aleinu, but if everyone in the minyan has parents ( for which they should all thank Hashem) no Kaddish is recited.
85) Q: Per what you wrote [that personal requests in Shemona Esrei should be added at the end of the Bracha] a person would say what they add at the end of Shomeia Tefilah before Baruch, not before Ki Atoh Shoimea [as is the custom]?
A: No, the place to add it in Shomea Tefilah, is before "Ki Atah Shomeah". What the Poskim say is to add it your personal requests after [most of] the text of the Nusach of the Chachamim was said. In most Brachos that would be immediately before the Chasima, while in Shema Koleinu it would be a little before.
86) Q: In[the] Halachos [of November 25 2008] you said you can add a personal tefiloh For example, if someone wants to request of Hashem to help him/her with Parnassah, the place to ask for that is in the Bracha of "Bareich Aleinu". When exactly do you say your requests ? do you actually say it or just think it?
A: Yes, you can actually say your personal Tefilah to Hashem, in your own words, asking Him for whatever you need. He is our father and He listens to our Tefilos! The right place to add it is right before the Chasimas HaBracha of " Baruch Ata Hashem Mevarech HaShanim"
87) Q: I have a question concernig the Halacha of adding requests during Shma Koleinu: does it have to be in Loshon Hakoidesh? I once heard that tefillos in Loshon Hakoidesh and yiddish(!) are preferable than in any other language.. is it true? and would it be possible to know where its brought down?
A: Though the best language to daven is Lashon Kodesh (See Mishna Berura and Biur Halacha Siman 62 and Aruch HaShulchan Siman 101:9), Tefilos may be said in any language that you understand, as long as they are heartfelt Tefilos from the heart (See Mishna Berura Siman 122:8). This is true for all Tefilos no matter if they are B'Tzibur or B'Yechidus. The only exception is the Aramaic language , as Tefilos may not be said in Aramaic unless one is davening B'Minyan (Therefore B'Yechidus one doesnt say Yekum Purkan, Brich Shemei or other Tefilos that were written in Aramaic).
Yiddish is no better than English or French regarding these Halachos. There are 3 categories: 1) Lashon Kodesh 2) Aramaic 3) ALL other languages.
CLICK HERE to see archives of my Halachos beginning with Halachos of Oct. 20 2008 for a more in depth treatment of these halachos.
88) Q: A member of my family stopped bringing negel vasser to his/her bed and goes to a sink on the other end of the house to wash there. It actually makes me very nervous because of the Tuma water in the sink and the Halachas involved.What should I do?
A: Many people do in fact walk to the sink to wash negel Vasser, and don't have it near their beds. There are definitely Poskim to rely on for this practice, as long as the sink is under the same roof, as the entire house is considered as one "4 Amos". (It is definitely better to wash in the closest sink possible though, and if that is in the bathroom, it is best to re-wash in a non bathroom sink afterwards). Also we wrote in the Halachos a while back from Rav Shlomo Zalmen Auerbach zatzal that there is a kabalah from the Gaon of Vilna that the Ruach Ra doesnt exist today as it once did.
That being said, one who did wash near their bed for a long time and wants to now stop, probably needs to be "Matir Neder" as it is definitely a "Hanhaga Tova- good practice" to wash near the bed. A Rav should be consulted about this point.
Now, regarding your being nervous about the water in the sink, this is a non issue. As the water goes down the drain, and does not sit around. It is worse to have used Negel vasser water spill on the floor, furniture, clothing etc. than to have it down your drain.
89) Q: you mentioned not to long ago that kissing ones tzitzis during shema may be considered a hefsek and there are some poskim that hold like this. My question is does kissing ones teffilin by "ukshartem.......Yadecha........bain ainecha" both times constitute a hefsek like by tzitzis? and if not why?
A: Yes, those Poskim who refrained from kissing their Tzitzis during Shema, would also refrain from kissing their Tefilin during Shema, though touching the Tefilin at those junctures, without kissing them is acceptable according to all opinions. The kissing is the Hefsek (according to those Poskim) as even those who don't kiss their Tzitzis during Shema, still hold them, and even place them over their eyes when saying "U'ReIsem Osam" as the Bais Yosef writes to do.
90) Q: ...I would appreciate if you can tell me the seder of washing the hand for Netilas Yadayim....My wedding is coming up and i would like to know this before I get married.
A: Netilas Yadayim is indeed extremely important, and doing it properly, besides being the way a frum jew should act is also a segulah for Parnasah and other heavenly blessings. Now that you are getting ready to build a new Jewish homeis a great time to start doing this great mitzvah properly and thus bring abundant blessing into your new home.
Here are a few quick halachos to get you started, and hopefully the rest will come when we reach those halachos. (These Halachos are for washing Netilas yadayim for bread only,and may not necessarily apply to washing after the bathroom, negel Vasser, etc. )
Ok, here goes:
1) your hands should be completely dry before washing.
2) It is best not wash in a bathroom. If no choice, at least dry the hands outside the bathroom
3) You need a revi'is of water (preferably per hand), though if possible to wash with a lot of water, it is praiseworthy.
5) You need to wash from a complete, uncracked cup (not from a bottle or directly from the sink)
6) Remove rings, bandaids, and any other chatzitza from your hands.
7) Fill up the cup while holding it in your right hand. transfer full cup toyour left hand and wash entire right hand first, transfer cup to right hand and wash left hand completely.
8) preferably each hand should be washed twice, though halachicaly once per hand suffices.
9) after hands are washed, raise them upwards, so water trickles towards your wrists, not downward. (Also, do not touch anyone elses hands after washing your own. In certain cases, doing so will necessitate another washing)
10) Rub hands together and make Bracha before drying the hands.(some make the bracha while drying hands, but definitely not after hands are already totally dried)
11) hands should be completely dried before eating the bread
12) do not talk between washing hands and drying them.
13) hold the bread with all 10 fingers, and make Hamotzei.
14) Preferably eat a kzayis of bread before talking.
91)Q: I am enjoying your Halachos emails very much but noticed a answer you had in your last email to a question regarding birchas krias shema. You answered that the brochos can be said as late as chatzos. I might be mistaken but it seems from the mechaber/mishna berurah that when saying krias shema after the zman you can only say birchas krias shema until the 4th hour (zman tefilah). Please let me know if this correct.
A: Yes, you are right that from the Mechaber and Mishna Berura it seems that one should not make the Brachos after the 4th hour. However, see the Biur Halacha who brings Shitos otherwise, and in fact paskens that an "Oines"- one who missed the Zman due to a circumstance out of his control- isallowed to make the Brachos until Chatzos. In Sefer Ketzos HaShulchan as well as in Badei HaShulchan and other contemporary Poskim Pasken that even a non "oines" can say the Brachos until Chatzos. Obviously, as with all Halacha l'Maaseh, your Rav should be consulted for final Psak.
92) Q:If somebody is eating bread,and gets 'tuma'- impure,when he ends the meal, and he is washing the hands, can this washing be good for 'Mayim Achronim'?
A: Yes, as long as he is finished the meal, and has no intention of eating more, the washing can be considered Mayim Achronim. Incidentally, if one becomes Tamei in the middle of the meal (from touching a usually covered part of the body, touching shoes etc.) the hands must be washed immediately, before resuming the meal.
93)Q: I was told that if one is making requests in a language other than Hebrew one should do so before the last YihYu L'ratzon when taking three steps back, My Tehilim teacher also mentioned that it is suggested to say Kapitels of tehilim there ( ex: psalm 121 for shiduchim). is that so?
Is it ok to pace back and forth while davening?
A: 1) See Q&A #87 above. If you are making your requests in English, there is no difference if it is during Shema Koleinu or before the last YiHyu L'Ratzon.
2) Yes, saying Tehillim (any Kapitel) and davening to Hashem, of course works for finding your Shiduch! I have indeed heard that some say that Kapitel 121 is a "Segulah" for zivugim. ( Based on a Midrash Parshas VaYeitzei 68:2 that Yaakov Avinu said this Kapitel when searching for a wife, and thus it's a Segulah for everyone seeking a Shidduch to say this particular Tefilah at the end of Shemona Esrei, after YihYu L'Ratzon, before taking three steps backwards.)
But the main thing is to daven and believe that Hashem will answer our Tefilos the right way in the right time.
3) Unless during certain parts of davening that specifically are supposed to be done sitting or standing, there is nothing intrinsically wrong with pacing. (The Gemara even says that Reb Akiva would end up on the other side of the room by the time he finished davening!). However, if by pacing it will lessen your Kavannah, it should not be done of course.
94) Q:I have been under the impression for quite some time that it is proper to stand for Chazoras Hashatz and Krias HaTorah. Is this incorrect?
A: 1) It is best to stand by Chazaras HaShatz. If one is older or if it's physically hard to stand they can be lenient and sit, as there are opinions that mainatain that one can indeed sit, and that it's only a Chumrah to stand. On Yomim Noraim when it is hard to stand for the entire Chazaras hashatz, Rav Yosef Shalom Elyashiv Shlita permits even healthy and strong people to sit. Within 4 Amos of the Shat"z according to all opinions you may not sit.
(See Rama Siman 124:4 and Mishna Berura there S"K 20 and Biur HaGra 124:4 and Halichos Shlomo Chapter 9 Ha'arah 35 what he brings from the Me'iri in Sotah 40a)
2) There is no Chiyuv to stand by Krias HaTorah M'Ikar Hadin However, it is praiseworthy to indeed stand for Krias HaTorah (See Mishna Berura 146:19). However when the Mevarech is saying "Borchu" and while the Tzibbur is answering "Baruch Hashem Hamevorach" it is required to stand.
95) Q: [You wrote] "If as soon as you finished taking the 3 steps back, the Baal Tefilah reached Kedusha, you may immediately take 3 steps forward and say Kedusha. However, if as soon as you took 3 steps back the Baal Tefilah reaches Tachnun, you must still wait the "4 Amos" before stepping forward and sitting down and starting Tachnun. (Even if by doing so it will necessitate saying the Tachnun while standing, you still must wait the "4 Amos"
Does this mean that if you take 3 steps back and you didnt yet say Oseh shalom... then you should skip that and take 3 steps forward and say kedushah?
A: Good question. From the Mishna Berura Siman 123:9 it seems that you should indeed finish Oseh Shalom but not wait the required 4 Amos, rather move up and say Kedusah as soon as possible. However, from the Mishna Berura in Siman104:29 it seems that when one is called up to the Torah while in middle of Elokai Netzor he may indeed forgo Elokai Netzor and the three steps and Oseh Shalom and go. I am not sure if he would pasken the same thing for Kedusha or other Mitzvos, or just for when called to the Torah. I have to research this further. Please consult with your Rav for Halacha L'maaseh.
96) Q: I realize that you are not currently learning this brocha, however, it is said very often on a daily basis and it puzzles me as to what the term "B'chochma" in the Asher Yotzar refers to. Is it referring to the Rebbono SHel Olom that He utilized wisdom in creating us or that the Rebbono SHel Olom created or instilled wisdom in the human being. Thank you and much hatzlocha on this harbotzas hatorah v'halacha project.
A: There are different Pshatim in the Meforshim if the "B'Chochma" is going on Hashem's Chochma, that He created us with wisdom, only after having prepared food in the world, otherwise we wouldnt be able to survive. (See Gemara Brachos 60b and Tosfos there and see Gemara Sanhedrin 38a. Also see Bach Siman 6 in Shulchan Aruch). The MaharSha, Levush and others learn that B'Chochma is going on that He created mankind with wisdom, unlike the rest of the animal kingdom. See also Aruch HaShulchan Siman 6
97)Q: Shalom u'Vracha, (By the way it's very true - whenever I'm standing for Ashrei before mincha I usually do not get into the same mindset as I would if I sit.)
These past few halachos raised lots of questions in my mind that I haven't ever really addressed:
1) -- in the minyan that I daven at on Shabbos, they go VERY fast, so I almost never end up finishing shmoneh esrei before kaddish - if they're up to kedusha, I once heard that I'm supposed to pause wherever I am and listen (I think because of shomea k'oneh?) to the kedusha and then return to what I was saying? This person also said that if they get up to kaddish but I've already said the yihiyu l'ratzon after the bracha of sim shalom (ie during elokay nitzor), that I should respond to kedusha? Also, is any of this the same with regular kaddish?
2 )Usually the minyan I daven at gets up to kriyas hatorah when I'm either right before shmone esrei or in the middle of shma/brachos before shima... that being said - if I'm up to just the brachos of kriyas shma should I pause and wait till after torah reading to continue? and if i've already said shima should I not be pausing because of the idea of a hefsek between geulah and geulah?
3 ) -- with regard to sitting/standing - where did that all come from? why do we sit at certain parts and stand at other parts of psukei d'zimra? i understand that some things have more chashivus but still it's just weird why we specifically would stand for one thing over another - is there anywhere that i can find something that would go through each of the parts where we sit and stand and explain its significance?
A: 1) Yes, if you are in the midst of Shemona esrei and hear kedusha or "Amen Yehei Sheimei Rabbah" in Kaddish you should stop, listen and continue where you stopped when you are done. Yes, it is because of "Shomea K;Oneh" that you do this.
After you say "Yihyu L'Ratzon" you may indeed answer Kaddish and Kedusha.
2) Before or during the Birchos Krias Shema, you should stop and listen to Krias HaTorah. After Shema, before Shemona Esrei, you may also stop and listen. After the Bracha of Ga'al Yisroel you must start Shemona esrei right away to be masmich Geulah to Tefilah, so you may not stop there to listen. The Chazon Ish and Rav Shlomo Zalmen Auerbach maintained that one may not stop his/her Shemona Esrei in the middle to listen to Krias HaTorah as it will be too long a hefsek. If one did so, they are Yotzei Krias haTorah, but it should not be done. Other Poskim do indeed allow one to stop in middle of Shemona esrei and listen and resume when it's over (Shu"t Az Nidberu Vol. 14 Siman 29)
3) Everything that is stated in Shulchan Aruch, and the later Poskim has a source and a reason. Some of the reasons we understand (like Shemona Esrei needs to be said standing as we are "standing" before the king, and Ashrei sitting because we need to get our mindset ready. Karbanos we stand because the Avodah in the Bais Hamikdash was done standing. Tachanun we "lay" to show how we throw ourselves down on the floor in front of Hashem and so on.) Others may have kabalistic reasons (like standing by VaYevarech David) which most of us cannot understand or comprehend.
If you have any specific ones you are wondering about, email them to me and I will try to research those more thoroughly
Follow Up from same reader: Thank you so much - those answers really helped me...I actually was wondering specifically why we stand for mizmor L'soda and for Vayivarech David? (Also, are we supposed to stand for the Baruch Hashem L'olam --- right after the last Halleluka? If so, why that one too?) Meantime it's good to know it's in the shulchan aruch... I'll try to learn it a little myself (but I don't usually fully know what I'm reading when I read it so that's why I'm asking you as well.
A: Mizmor L'Sodah , which was said when someone brought a "thanks" offering in the Bais HaMikdash is one the most exalted praises of Hashem that we have. In fact the Chazal say that when Mashiach comes, all the praises of Hashem[ that we currently have] will become obsolete and will no longer be used, besides Mizmor L'Sodah! The Kitzur Shulchan Aruch and the Shaarei Teshuva in the name of the Yad Ahron say that it should be said while standing, as the Korban Todah was offered while standing. [and it should also be said B'Simcha]. However, the Arizal maintained that it should in fact be said while sitting.
Many people I know, including myself, actually sit for Mizmor L'Sodah, as from the Rama (Siman 51:7) it is mashma that he paskens to sit.
the words from Vayevarech Dovid (not before) until "Ata Hu Hashem H'Elokim Asher Bacharta B'Avram" are customary to be said while standing, and you should sit back down after that point until Yishtabach [ or Az Yashir according to some Poskim]. (Rama ibid. and Mishna Berura). See Shulchan Aruch HaRavSiman 51:11 that the reason we stand until those words is that the first letters of the words Ata Hu Hashem H'Elokim are an acronym for one of Hashem's divine names.
98) Q:Thank you so much for sending the emails everyday! This is totally off topic but i was wondering if you wash and say Hamotzee does it cover your drinking as well? do you have to make a shehakol on a drink after hamotzee? (also if yes why, if no why?) and do you make a bracha on cakes, fruits, candy after hamotzee if youre eating it right after the meal before you bentch? i know for vegetables you dont... thank you so much .
A: Yes, if you wash for Hamotzei it covers drinks as well (except for wine, but I will not elaborate on that now). The reason is because it is part of your meal, and the making of HaMotzei exempts the entire meal, as all the food is "attached" to the bread.
The only exceptions would be things that arent part of the meal, which brings us to your next question.
Dessert is technically not part of the meal, so it requires its own Bracha. The only exceptions to this is cake, which (according to most Poskim) is covered by the Hamotzei regardless of it being not part of the actual meal. Also Ices is considered a "drink" and not food and does not require a new Bracha, as drinks are always considered part of the meal . Nuts, fruit, popcorn, potato chips and candy do require a new Bracha.
Vegetables arent usually served for dessert, so they are part of the meal and as such usually do not need a new Bracha.
Keep in mind that even though a Bracha is necessary,a Bracha Achrona is not necessary as the Birchas HaMazon will exempt all that you ate.
Regarding ice cream, reader emailed me saying that he heard from Rav Smith and Rav Yisroel Belsky that Rav Moshe zatzal held that Ice cream, unlike ices, requires a Bracha.
However, I did some more research, and it seems that it is big machlokes HaPoskim so I will elaborate a bit more about this topic..
Rav Elyashiv shlita rules that ice cream is treated as a liquid. See Seer V'Zos HaBracha page 44. Also see Shu"t Be'er Moshe from the Debreciner Rav Zatzal Vol. 1Siman 11.
There are poskim who disagree and consider it a food. This was the Steiplers opinion (brought in Sefer Mekor HaBracha page 110.) as well as the BeTzel haChachma (brother of the Debreciner Rav) Vol. 3 Siman 114:4.
Although their machlokes is regarding the chiyuv of Bracha Achrona on ice Cream, it would follow that if it is a liquid it doesnt need a new Bracha at dessert time.
I do remember hearing many times B'Shem Rav Moshe zatzal that it is considered a liquid B'Nogea to not needing a new Bracha.
After posting the answer above, a daily reader, emailed me:
"Growing up, we were taught by my father [Rav Yitzchok Frankel Shlit"a, a talmid of Rav Moshe Zatzal] that Rav Moshe held that ice cream (and jello), like ices, are considered a liquid.
Pudding is questionable."
99) Q: You state that one should not talk during davening.
Which ever minyan I daven in, chazaras Hashatz seems to be the time when mispallelim run to the seforim to start learning! Is this in fact proper or should they be paying attention to the shliach tzibur reciting the Shemona Esrei?
A: Chazaras HaShatz is NOT the time for learning, and indeed it is prohibited to learnthen, as we are supposed to be listening to (and following along with ) the Chazzan. HaRav Chaim Kanievsky Shlita tells people who ask this question that if they learn during Chazaras HaShatz it is a "Mitzvah Haba B'Aveira- a Mitzva acquired through the performance of a sin". Rav Moshe Feinstein Zatzal used to follow along in the siddur with his finger every word of Chazaras HaShatz, as did many other Gedolim who definitely used to learn a lot more than most average yidden.
If the choice is to talk or to learn, obviously talking is much worse! but halachically learning is Asur at that time. .(We will discuss this more at length in the coming days Halachos)
100)Q: I am confused with the halacha you cited today (Dec. 7) about how many people must answer to each brocha [of Chazaras HaShatz].
I daven at an early minyan each morning where due to the rush of the people to get to work, the minyan moves at a very fast pace. Part of this speed is due to the fact that the shliach tzibur was told that only 6 people, yes only 6 people need to have finished their silent shemona esrei before the shliach tzibur starts chazaras hashatz. Yet you are saying that 9 or more people must be ready to answer amen. What is the bottom line? 9,8,7,6 ?
A: Yes, although this is something that many people do, it is questionable if this practice is according to Halacha. Allow me to elaborate a little bit:
The Shulchan Aruch Siman 55 says that if one of the Minyan is in middle of Shemona Esrei, he is still counted as part of the ten. The Mishna Berura says that as long as 6 are not in middle of Shemona esrei, the other 4 are Mitztaref (counted as being part of the minyan)
The problem is, that this Halacha is said regarding saying Kadish or a different Davar Sh'Bekedusha, that only requires ten people to be together, but not necessarily 10 people "answering"
The question is if this Halacha applies to Chazaras HaShatz as well?
The Shulchan Aruch HaRav (Siman 55:7) says explicitly that this only works for Kadish and Barchu etc. but for Chazaras HaShatz, anything less than 9 answering is a Bracha L'Vatalah. The Kaf HaChaim Paskens like this as well as do many other Poskim.
Some Poskim maintain that the opinion of the Maharil was to indeed allow even Chazaras HaShatz with only 6 people of the 10 answering. (The Maharil does not say this clearly, rather they deduce that this is what he would have held. The reasoning and proofs that apply to and against this opinion is too lengthy a discussion for this email)
Rav Shlomo Zalmen Auerbach Zatzal maintained that even if the Maharil was lenient, the Shulchan Aruch wasn't and he paskened that for Kadish and Barchu 6 is enough, while for Chazaras HaShatz nine people answering is required.
Some Poskim allow the starting of Chazaras HaShatz with only 6 people answering, B'Sha'as HaDchak- in extreme situations, but not as a rule to be relied on daily.
For Halacha L'Maaseh please consult your Rav, and do not rely on what any Shliach Tzibbur "was told" to do by someone who may not know the real Halacha.