q&a page 18

865) Q:  What is the origin of the requests (harachamans) that we make in Birchas Hamazon after the bracha ending in L'olam al yichasreinu?

A: These Harachamans are not an intrinsic part of Birchas hamazon, and seemingly these requests were added by the early Gaonim.

(See Iyun Tefilah commentary to Sidur Otzar Hatefilos)

 

After originally posting the above Q& A, a reader responded with the following:

"See chofetz chaim al hatorah in ki savo on the pasok of ונזעק 

He says why we say the harachamans then after benching"

Below are the words of the holy Chofetz Chaim Zatzal:

ונצעק אל ד' א' אכותינו וישמע ד' את קלנו וגו'. (כ״ו ז)
וישמע את תפלתנו לא נאמר, אלא וישמע ד׳ א ת קולנו, ללמדנו בא ,
שצריכים לצעוק בקול בעת צרח, ועי״ז עונח ד׳ תיכןן, ואןש כי לפעמים עונ ת
ד׳ במשך איזה ימים, ואפילו לכמה שנים, כדאיתא במדרש, יש תפלה לכמה
שנים, אבל הצעקה בקול מועלת.
והעיקר לבקש על הכלל כולו, ולבקש אחרי קיום המצוה, כמו שאנו
אומרים תפלות ״הרחמן" אחרי שקיימנו מצות ברכת המזון.

 

#birchashamazon #harachaman #tefilah

866) Q: Is it permissible to use an electric nursing pump with a shabbos clock on shabbos? 

A:This is not a simple yes or no answer, as it depends on a lot of variables such as why you are using the pump, what you are doing with the expressed milk, the health of the baby, the health of the mother etc.

 

Generally, pumping on Shabbos is asur. However,  if being done for the pain/discomfort of the mother, or to prevent infection,  as long as the milk being expressed is not saved for use, but rather expressed directly down the drain or into a container with soapy water in it  to make it unfit for use, it will be allowed with a manual pump or with one operating via a shabbos timer. Also, when using the timer, the pump would need to be connected before the timer turns on the pump, as once the pump is operational, there are additional issues with attaching it in that state. Also, when permitted,  doing it with a shinui is recommended.

 

If the baby is ill/weak and needs this milk, there may be times and methods when the milk is permitted, and a Rav should be consulted before Shabbos to discuss the details of why and how the milk needs to be pumped on Shabbos

#nursing #pump #pumpingonshabbos

867) Q: Can you please explain  why some people have their parents walk them down to the chuppah while some people are makpid on the 2 fathers walking the choson and the 2 mothers walking the kallah. I thought it was a chasidish/litvish custom until I read  that Rav Avigdor Miller Zatzal (who was Litvish) was makpid on the 2 fathers/2 mothers minhog. 

A: I am not sure where the original minhag came from. Possibly, simply from the fact that the Choson and Kallah each had "shushvinin" that took care of them/watched over them, and thus, most likely, the choson had men and the Kallah had women.  Interestingly, the Rama in  Yoreh Deah Siman 391:3 writes that 2 men  walk the choson to the Chuppah, though I am not sure if he is ruling this way, or simply pointing out what the minhag was in Ashkenaz.

 

Over the years the minhag evolved and in many circles the choson is walked down by  his father and his kallah's father and the kallah is walked down by her mother and her choson's mother, while in some circles each set of parents walk down their own child to the chuppah.

 

Many people have the custom to do whatever the other side wants in this matter, as keeping the peace at all times is more important and the best way for the new couple to star off their new life together! ( I heard that this was the minhag of Rav Yaakov Kamenetsky Zatzal, as he was makpid to maintain Shalom at all times, rather than stubbornly insist on any minhag)

#chuppah #minhag

868) Q: Why is the 8th, and final, day of Chanukah called "Zos Chanukah"?

A: There are quite a few explanations for this, some simple and some with more depth, based on Kaballah.

 

The simple reason is that the Torah reading of this day includes the verse "Zos Chanukas Hamizbe'ach", thus this day became known as "Zos Chanukah".

 

Additionally, being that it is the final day of the Yom Tov, it is referred to as Zos Chanukah, in the manner of " This is it".

 

Kaballistically, this day has tremendous holiness, as a day for intense Teshuva as it is the absolute final day of Heavenly judgement, culminating the "days of awe" that began on Rosh Hashana, so it is sort of like a last chance for those who didn't do what is necessary until now, to get on the bandwagon and receive a positive judgement.

#chanukah #zoschanukah

869) Q: I know a carpet sweeper isn't allowed on Shabbos, but is it permitted to sweep the carpet with a broom?

A: While many Poskim are lenient and allow light sweeping of carpet with a regular soft broom,  especially if the items you are sweeping are  large crumbs only on the surface,  it is best  to be stringent and  avoid sweeping a carpet on Shabbos if it is very dirty, and the dirt/crumbs are  be imbedded into the fibers.  See Shu"t Minchas Yitzchok Vol. 5 Siman 39 for more about this.

 

Note: Using  brooms made of hard material, such as straw, is forbidden, and such brooms are also Muktzeh.

 

For Halacha L'ma'aseh, every individual must consult their Rav.

#sweepingonshabbos

870) Q: halachically speaking, once shkiya comes one may remove his tzitzis. Many folks are saying to still wear tzitzis for shmira purposes. I have not seen this anywhere. Is this accurate. I’m asking strictly for halacha and not looking to go above an beyond in this instance.

A: According to the letter of the law, once a shkiah arrives there is no longer an obligation to put on Tzitzis. That being said, to specifically and immediately remove them as soon as the sun sets is not a great idea, as it is a bizayon to the Mitzvah, as it shows that we can't wait to get rid of it. Also, yes, there is the shemira aspect which is brought in Chazal.

 

Furthermore, keep in mind the following:

 

The wearing of a Talis Katan is an extremely important Mitzvah, as the Shulchan Aruch states  (Siman 8:11) that the purpose of this Mitzvah is that one should always see his Tzitzis and thus be reminded of all the Mitzvos of the Torah.  In fact, according to Chazal (Sifri Zuta 15 and other places) the mitzvah of Tzitzis is equal to all the mitzvos in the Torah and one who is is careful to always wear Tzitzis is as if he fulfilled all the commandments of the Torah!

 

The Mishna Berura (S"K 26) writes very strongly about the importance of always seeing the Tzitzis, and is not happy with those who wear their Tzitzis in a hidden way that they cannot be seen proudly. ( I would posit that rushing to remove the Tzitzis is akin, or worse, than wearing them covered).  He goes on to write that Chazal say that those who are very careful in the observance of the mitzvah of Tzitzis will merit seeing the Shechinah, (See Shulchan Aruch Siman 24: 5 and 6) and  that the Jews that will merit being alive at the time of the final redemption will be those who were outstanding in their observance of this exalted mitzvah!

#Tzitzis

871) Q: Is there a reason for the world-wide minhag of women giving tzedakah before challah, mikvah, and hadlakas neiros?

A: Giving Tzedakah is always a good thing to do.

 

There is an added benefit of giving Tzedakah before one davens, based on the Pasuk (Tehilim 17:15) "Ani B'Tzedek Echezeh Panecha" (with Tzedakah I will approach You[Hashem]). It turns the Tefilah that follows it into one of Eis Ratzon, as it brings the one who gave Tzedakah into  the presence of the holy Shechina. (See Talmud Bava Basra 10a)

 

Though this applies to both men and women, there are 3 special mitzvos that are women's mitzvos, and all of them are traditionally accompanied by special Tefilos, thus before they say their special tefilos, it is an extremely opportune time to precede it with Tzedakah, to turn it into an Eis ratzon.

#Tzedakah

872) Q: Is an esrog kosher of it’s made with a mold/form to shape it? Any mareh mikomos on it?

A: Yes, so long as the mold doesn't reshape it to look like something other than an Esrog, it is acceptable. See Sukkah 36b and Shulchan Aruch Siman 648:19

#Esrog

873) Q: The fellow davening next to me davens Shemona esrei loud enough that I can hear. Is he permitted to daven that way? Also, Do I answer amen to his brachos in his silent shemona esrei that I hear?

A: No, he should not be davening shemona esrei loud enough that you are able to hear and be disturbed by it, and no, you should not answer Amen to his brachos that are not supposed to be heard. (See Shu"t Shevet Haleivi Vol. 3 Siman 15:1)

 

Only on Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur when Halacha allows a person to daven a little louder (See Mishna Berura Siman 101 S"K 11 that here too it should not be heard by others)  it would it be OK, according to some poskim,  to answer Amen to a bracha you hear him say in his silent shemona Esrei, but not all year round. ( See Mateh Efraim Elef Hamagen Siman 582:43)

#shemonaesrei

874) Q:  We have always been very makpid to Bli Neder give ma'aser from all our earnings. Recently I came across a Gaon who says that one should give a fifth and that's when, and only when, does one see bracha. Being that I'm a Rebbi and we just make it by every month B"H should I try giving a fifth?

A: Yes, the Gra held that the ikar ma'aser is Chomesh, and indeed he guaranteed Ashirus, wealth, for those who are scrupulous to give a chomesh. See Keser Rosh from Rav Chaim of Volozin beginning of Hilchos Tzedakah U'ma'ser and see Ahavas Chesed Vol. 2 Perek 19 and 20 at length, including the footnotes, for more details about this.

 

I cannot tell you how to be noheg, as only a Rav familiar with your personal situation can guide you in this matter properly, as many Poskim did not rule as the Gr"a, for the average Yid.

 

I will say that a Yid can never lose from giving Tzedakah, Maaser or Chomesh. Also, the Chofetz Chaim says that if one cannot give a chomesh but can give more than maaser, that is also a ma'aleh, as it it is not all or nothing regarding the chomesh.

For more details, please review archives of Hilchos Ma'ser Kesafim HERE.

#maaser #chomesh

875)  Q:Is there a Halacha or mekor for dragging out the words " V'Hu Rachum" at the onset of Maariv on Motzaei Shabbos?

A:  Yes, the Rama (end of Siman 293) brings the Minhag to drag out V'Hu Rachum (and also Barchu) as a way to "extend" the Shabbos for a few more seconds. (Tosefes Shabbos). The Sha'arei Teshuva there, Os 2, quoting Rav Hai Gaon, adds to drag out  Baruch Hashem Hamevorach L'Olam Vaed as well, as this brings Hatzlacha for the week ahead.

 

Additionally,  this is based on the Kabalistic idea that the Neshamos who got a reprieve from Gehinnom over Shabbos return to Gehinom when we say the words V'Hu Rachum at maariv (Similarly, this Pasuk was recited as part of the procedure when Bais Din meted out the malkos, 39 Lashes, for transgressing sins; See Talmud Makos 22b) and thus, we want to delay (either in actuality or symbolically) their return there, so we say it in a dragged out tone.

#vehurachum

876) Q: Can you add some insight about the Minhag that people have to daven for the amud on the Motzaei Shabbos before a yahrtzeit?

A: The Sefer Gesher Hachaim (Perek 32: 2) quotes in the name of the Arizal to daven for the Amud on the Motzai Shabbos prior to a Yahrtzeit.

In the footnotes there he brings that he heard a reason for this as follows: Each Shabbos we get a Neshama Yeseira and each Motzai Shabbos it leaves us temporarily, to return the following Shabbos.

 

On the final Shabbos of a person's life, the Neshama Yeseira leaves him permanently, as it won't return the following Shabbos.

 

Thus, Motzai Shabbos before a person's Yahrtzeit is the "Yahrtzeit" of his Neshama Yeseira, so to speak, and thus it is commemorated by davening for the Amud at that time.

#Yahrtzeit #Neshamayeseira

877) Q: In a leap year, does "Mishenichnas Adar Marbin B'Simcha" apply to both months or only to the second Adar?

A: According to some Poskim it applies only to the second Adar

(Opinion of the Ya'avetz in his commentary to Ta'anis 29a, based on Rashi's explanation that the Adar connected to Nisan is the reason for this added Simcha, as the months that have Purim and Pesach in them are days of miracles for Klal Yisroel.)

 

According to other Poskim it applies to both months.

(See Halichos Shlomo, Chodesh Adar, page 328 footnote 35 that this was the opinion of the Chasam Sofer, who dated someTeshuvos he wrote in Adar I as written in Adar, the month of added Simcha.)

 

Interestingly, the Rambam and Shulchan Aruch omit this Talmudic dictum of increaing joy in Adar, altogether. (See Shu"t Chasam Sofer Orach Chaim Siman 160 for an explanation of this omission. The Mogen Avraham, however, does bring this halacha, as does the Kitzur Shulchan Aruch and other Poskim. Some suggest that the reason it is omitted is that unlike mourning in Av which has specific halachic guidelines, happiness is subjective, and has no concrete Halachic guidelines. See Piskei teshuvos Siman 686 footnote 17)

 

The prevalent custom among Klal Yisroel is to indeed follow this Talmudic statement to increase joy in Adar (See Halaichos Shlomo; Chodesh Adar page 328 footnote 36 that there is a well-established custom in Klal Yisroel to hang signs proclaiming "Mishenichnas Adar Marbim B'Simcha" in homes and in Shuls. That too applies already in Adar Rishon, according to the Poskim who maintain that the added simcha already applies in Adar I)

#adarsheini #adarrishon #iberyohr

878) Q: I’m moving into a new home. What is the reason and requirement to leave an unfinished space on a wall? How big does it have to be and where?

 

A: When one builds a new home, a small area facing the entrance of the home (so it is seen as soon as yu enter the home) should be left unfinished, without plaster (or without paint in that area suffices, according to many Poskim) as a Zecher L’Churban, a reminder that we do not have our true home, the Bais Hamikdash, and thus our own home cannot be complete.

 

If one purchases an existing home from an Aino-Yehudi that does not have this empty area, there is no obligation to add it. If the house was purchased from a Yid who did not leave this area, since this was done against Halacha, the Mishna Berura rules that the new owner must rectify this.

 

Some people erroneously paint a black square across from the entranceway instead of leaving it unfinished/unpainted; this is not an acceptable alternative to leaving the space unfinished. Some people hang a piece of art with the words "Im Eshkacheich Yerushalaim Tishkach Yemini" in that area, instead of leaving it unfinished; this too is not a Halachically acceptable alternative.

 

(See Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim Siman 560:1 and Mishna Berura S”K 1- 4)

 

This area should be at least a 1 Amah X 1 Amah square. 



Rav Moshe Feinstein Zatzal ruled that it can be an area of a square Amah, and thus one of the sides can be less than an Amah if the other sides are larger. (See Sefer Habayis, page 215, footnote 11. Rav Moshe Zatzal held that an Amah is a little less than 22 inches. See Shu”t Igros Moshe Orach Chaim Vol.  1 Siman 36 and Yoreh Deah Siman 3:66:1)

 

May we merit the rebuilding of the Bais Hamikdash very soon and no longer need any reminders of the Churban in our homes, at our Simchos or anywhere else!

#zecherlechurban #churban

879) Q: In a leap year, do we say Al Hanisim on 14 Adar Rishon, Purim Katan, as it is a minor celebration and sme Poskim say to be joyous and have a festive meal.

A: No, Al Hanisim is not recited on Purim Katan, even according to thos Poskim who require a festive meal. (See Mishna berura Siman 697 S"K 5 regarding a festive meal.)

 

However, if it was recited, there is no requirement to repeat the Shemona esrei or the Birchas Hamazon. (See Mishna Berura Siman 697:1)

#PurimKatan

880) Q: In which Adar will my daughter become bas mitzvah. She was born on chof – 20th of - adar in a non-leap year.  This year is a leap year. I heard conflictiong opinions about this.

 

Also, I forgot to say kaddish on my grandmother’s yahrtzeit (she had 3 daughters and no sons) on 8 Adar aleph. Is it proper to say kaddish on 8 Adar bais?

A: The Rama (Orach Chaim Siman 55:10) rules that a boy born in Chodesh Adar in a non leap year, celebrates his Bar Mitzvah, in a leap year, in the second Adar.

 

There are a few Poskim who argue and maintain that the Bar Mitzvah should be in the first Adar. This is the minority opinion.

 

Therefore, even a boy who doesn't have the minhag to start wearing Tefilin a month before his Bar Mitzvah, in this situation should don Tefilin already from the first Adar, according to some Poskim, in order to satisfy this minority opinion. (See Shu"t Shevet Haleivi Vol. 6 Siman 9)

 

For a girl, who doesn't don tefillin, the date to celebrate her Bas Mtzvah, according to virtually all Poskim, is in the second Adar.

 

Regarding a Yahrtzeit for someone who passed away in Adar, in a non-leap year, the Ashkenazic custom is actually to commemorate the date twice, in both Adars, so indeed, you should recite Kaddish on the date in Adar 2, regardless if you already observed the date in Adar 1 or not. (See Rama Siman 568: 7 and Mishna Berura S"K 41 and 42)

 

For Halacha L'Ma'aseh, as always,, you should consult your Rav.

#leapyear #BarMitzvah #BasMitzvah

881) Q:  I was told that I can't mash avocado on shabbos, but then someone told me that if it's going to be eaten right away it's okay. Which is correct?

A: According to some Poskim, the leniency of cutting food into small pieces immediately before the meal applies only to cutting into small pieces. However, crushing or mashing fruits and vegetables [in the regular manner] is prohibited even if done immediately before the meal. (See Chazon Ish Siman 57 Dibur Hamaschil V’Aamnam)

 

Other Poskim, however, do not differentiate between cutting and crushing and allow it all if done immediately before the meal. (See Shu”t Rivash Siman 184 quoted in Biur Hagra Siman 321:10. See also Pri Megadim, Aishel Avraham, Siman 321:14 and Shu”t Igros Moshe Orach Chaim Vol. 4 Siman 74: Tochen; 4)

 

For Halacha L'Ma'aseh, every individual must consult ther own Rav.

#Tochen #39Melachos

882) Q: When two people have Yahrtzeit, one is for the Mother, and the other is for the Father, who has priority for the amud, the Mother or the Father ?

A: While  some have suggested that a Yahrtzeit for a father takes precedence over that of a mother , due to the fact that a male needs more zechusim in Olam Haba than a female, due to having had more Mitzvos that he may have transgressed in this world, and having a stronger Yetzer Hara in the area of Kedusha, halacha doesn't really see it that way.

 

The general and accepted Halacha is to treat the Yahrtzeit of a mother and a father equally.  In fact, the Kitzur Shulchan Aruch (Siman 26:16) rules that even one who is mourning for both his father and his mother at  the same time, does not take precedence over any other mourners, even if they are mourning over another relative, not a parent, as all "commemorations" are equal.

 

For Halacha L'Ma'aseh, as always, a Rav should be consulted.

883) Q:  Is there a Mekor to put your shel Yad in the left side of your bag? 

 

It seems from the Shulchan Aruch that it should be on the right, but most people I know put it on the left.  Is this so you don't pass over it?  Is it coincidence that the plastic covers open right to left, but the actual batel opens left to right? 

A: The Mechaber Siman 28:2 seems to say(according to the understanding of the Bach and Taz, quoted in Mishna Berura S"K 7) to use a narrow bag and put one in back and one in front.  The reason is so that the Shel Yad should be touched first when putting on Tefilin, and not have to pass over the Shel Rosh.

 

However the Mogen Avrohom says it's better to do it side by side. The Mishna Berura quotes the Shulchan Shlomo to place on right side of the bag, so that it is touched first when going to take it out. Not because the right side is intrinsically better.

 

I wonder if  when he says the right side, he means the bag's right, i.e. the person's left, as we do it. In any case, the way it is customary for us to do it is because we reach there first.

 

Regarding the zipper of the bag, Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach says it doesn't matter, as that is not yet called reaching for the Tefilin. (Quoted in Dirshu Mishna Berura from Siach Halacha)

#Tefilin

884) For Megillah Reading in the daytime - I want to hear it read from my father (via ZOOM) who lives on the east coast and I am on the west coast. Can he do the reading later in the afternoon for himself, my Mother and me, which would be about 3 pm EST time and 12 pm PST?

A: If you hear it from someone, you need to hear it in person, live, as you do do not satisfy your obligation by hearing it via phone or internet. If you don't have someone to hear it from, you must read it yourself.  If you read from a kosher megilah, recite the brachos. Otherwise, just read it, with no bracha.

#Purim

885) Q: Is there a prohibition for a man to watch a video clip of animals breeding if he is interested in the science of it?

If yes, can you please provide me with the source? Also, I'd be interested to know even if it is not an Isur, but is frowned upon in certain sources.

A: The Rambam (Hilchos Isurei Biah Perek 21 Halacha 20 (19 in some versions)) and the Shulchan Aruch (Even Ha'Ezer Siman 23:3)  based on the Talmud (Avoda zara 20 a-b) rule that it is forbidden for a male to gaze at  domesticated animals, wild animals or birds while they are mating. This prohibition would apply to watching it in reality, as well as to watchng a video of it.

886) Q: Is permitted to visit a cemetery on Chol Hamoed?  What if it is far away and there are  limited other opportunities to visit?

A: Ideally, cemeteries should not be visited on Shabbos, Yom Tov and Chol Hamoed.  (See Gesher Hachaim Perek 29 and Nit'ei Gavriel Hilchos Aveilus Chelek 2, Perek 83:4)

If Yahrtzeit falls out on Chol Hamoed, some do visit, while others visit on Erev Yom Tov. There are varying customs.  (See Nit'ei Gavriel Hilchos Aveilus Chelek 2 Perek 76:14 and 15  and footnote 22 )

 

Some Poskim make an exception for Kivrei Tzadikim, but many Poskim do not agree with that exception.

I also heard in the name of Rav Chaim Kanievsky Zatzal, that on days when there is no Tachanun, the Neshamos are not present by their graves, so there is no point in visiting on those days anyhow.

 

Of course, for Halacha L'Ma'aseh a Rav should be consulted.

887) Q: [This question is about eating Matzah "before" Pesach.]

 

There are three types of Matzah. Shmurah hand, machine, and chometz matzos.

 

I assume the chometz matzos is not a problem because it’s not really matzah and like eating other crackers.

 

But if someone is makpid on pesach to eat only shmurah, can they eat machine before pesach?

 

For that matter those who use machine shmurah on pesach, can they eat regular machine matzah before?

 

A: The isur of eating matzah on Erev Pesach (and by extension, the minhag of not eating Matzah either a month before pesach or from Rosh Chodesh Nisan) seemingly applies only to Matzah that is able to be eaten on Pesach, and thus real chometz Matzah, according to many Poskim (based on the Rama Siman 471:2) is allowed.

 

However, many Poskim prohibit chometz Matzah on Erev Pesach as well (and possibly the minhag of 30 days or Rosh Chodesh as well) as it "tastes" like Matzah, and thus would pose the same problem as kosher for Pesach Matzah, as it will minimize the appetite for Matzah on Pesach night, [as wella s for other reasons, based on different understandings of the Talmud Yerushalmi Pesachim Perek 10 Halacha 1] (This was the ruling of Rav Yosef Shalom Elyasgiv Zatzal . See Ashrei Haish Orach Chaim Vol. 3 pages 369-370:9, and many other contemporary Poskim. See also Shu"t Minchas Yitzchok Vol. 8 Siman 37 and Orchos Rabbeinu Vol. 2 page 12:12)

 

As per the Mishna Berura Siman 471 S"K 12 the Isur applies to all Matzah that is kosher M'Ikar Hadin, even if we wouldn't actually eat it on Pesach due to a Chumrah (such as a Kefulah), as such it would definitely apply to a 100% kosher Matzah that you happen not to use on pesach, such as machine Matzah, or shemurah matzah that is a lower standard than your own. These should all be avoided, just as the Matzah you use for Pesach is avoided before Pesach, and surely on Erev Pesach itself should not be eaten.

 

Egg Matzah is a dispute among the Poskim, and surely it is best to avoid eating it on Erev Pesach, and surely from after the 5th hour of the day. (See Aruch Hashulchan Siman 444:5 and Shu"t Igros Moshe Orach Chaim Vol. 1 Siman 155)

 

For Halacha L'Ma'aseh, of course, each individual should consult their own Rav

#Matzah #Pesach #ErevPesach

888) Q: This past Motzaei Shabos I lost my mother A"H. Due to the current political situation I was unable to travel to Russia. The levaya was on Wednesday. In our community in [name of city in Russia]  the custom is to visit the cemetery after Shiva is completed. However, we also have a custom under normal circumstances not to visit the cemetery during the entire month of Nissan. Is my family allowed to visit the cemetery after Shiva? 

A: I am sorry for your loss. May Hashem comfort you and your family among the mourners of Tzion V'yerushalayim.  May you all have the strength to get through this difficult time, with the knowledge  that Hashem is at your side always. May her Neshama continue to have a tremendous Aliya

 

Going to a cemetery in Nisan is a much discussed topic by the Rabbanim. It seems clear from the Rabbanim that if one does go, he may not cry, be overly sad, show signs of grief, or say any of the standard Tefilos/Techinos/Bakashos that are usually recited there, as Nisan is not a time for such excessive sadness.

 

If you think you can go for a quick visit and stick to the parameters of not exhibiting signs of grief and  sadness there, you can probably go. Otherwise, it is appropriate to push off the visit to Chodesh Iyar. Instead of visiting, add extra Torah learning (Mishnayos, specifically) and tzedakah, as a merit for her Neshama.

 

Of course, for Halacha L'Ma'aseh, best to discuss with your family's Rav.

#Yahrtzeit #ChodeshNisan #BaisHakevaros

889) Q:  If a minor child has some chometz items what is the procedure to make the father a shliach to be able to sell his chometz?

A: Halachically, a father owns everything that his minor son owns which was bought with the father's money, and thus when he sells his chometz, he automatically sells the chometz of his minor child as well. If the minor had money fro another source, the father should specify when selling chometz that he is including his minor's chometz in this sale as well.

 

If a minor doesn't have a father R"L, his Apotrupus (guardian)  sells on his behalf.

 

There is actually a shita in the Poskim that  chometz of a minor that was his over Pesach is not asur after Pesach, and thus would not need to be sold at all. (See Yesodei Yeshurun, from Rav Gedalia Felder Zatzal,  page 313)

#Pesach

890) Q: If one forgot to count Sefiras Ha'Omer on Thursday night, and only remembered on Friday, while it is still daytime, but after accepting Shabbos early (as is commonly done by many people to "make early Shabbos"). Can he still count Friday's count as it is still daytime, or do we say it is already Shabbos for him and thus he can no longer count Friday's count?

 

A: Rav Chaim Kanevsky Zatzal ruled that for the purposes of sefirah it is still Friday and he can still count Friday's count and continue counting with a bracha on subsequent nights.(Quoted in Divrei Siach Parsha sheet from sefer Kobetz Chukas HaPesach on Shoneh Halachos). This was also the ruling of Rav Moshe Feinstein Zatzal (See Shu"t Igros Moshe Orach Chaim Vol. 4 Siman 99 at length for a discussion about this, and if this applies even after the person already davened maariv of Shabbos)

#Sefirah

891) Q: If a minor (under Bar/Bas Mitzvah) forgot to count Sefirah one night, should he be told to continue counting without a bracha, or for Chinuch purposes, he should still recite the bracha?

 

A: Rav Chaim Kanevsky Zatzal ruled that he should continue counting without a Bracha. This too is part of Chinuch. (Quoted in Divrei Siach Parsha sheet from sefer Kobetz Chukas HaPesach on Shoneh Halachos)

#Sefirah

892) Q:  am a little confused as to why we celebrate Lag B’Omer based on the reason that the Talmidim of Rabbi Akiva stopped dying. They stopped dying because there was nobody else left to die. And even if they didn’t specifically die on Lag B’Omer, Since the dying picked up the following day, how is that a reason to celebrate?

 

A: We are not celebrating the death of the Talmidim, nor are we celebrating the pause in their death, per se.

 

We are celebrating the rebirth of Torah learning and the continuation of our Mesorah which came about during this time period, namely via Rebbi Akiva and his disciples, including Rebbi Shimon bar Yochai.

 

When Rebbi Akiva lost EVERYTHING he worked so hard to build, he could have and should have been dejected and thrown in the towel (as most human beings would have done). However, he did not. He did the opposite. He went and found 5 new Talmidim and started again. From those 5 we have everything we have until today in Torah Sheba'al Peh, and specifically, via Rebbi Shimon, we have Toras Hanistar as well, i.e. the holy Zohar.

 

Thus, what we are celebrating, in essence, is the REBIRTH of Torah which happened in this time period, despite the odds against it, and since Rebbi Shimon's Yahrtzeit is in this time period, on Lag B'Omer, that was the day chosen to celebrate the REBIRTH and CONTINUITY, of Torah for Am Yisroel.

 

These words are etched in Meron at the grave of Rebbi Shimon "Ki Lo Sishakach MiPi Zaro....." Torah will never be forgotten....due in large part to the REBIRTH of Torah by Rebbi Akiva and his Talmidim, chiefly, Rebbi Shimon.

 

In a deeper sense, "They stopped dying" is a reference to the Torah. It stopped dying, and continued being transmitted!

 

There is a lot more to say about this topic, which is a deep and mystical topic with many aspects to it, but a full coverage of this is beyond the scope of this email.

#LagBomer #Sefira #Zohar

893) Q: I have a question about chewing thread while having an article of clothing being sewn on oneself. I did see somewhere about holding something in one's mouth as that is ka-she le shikcha. However some of us were talking and a few of us remarked that our mothers made us chew thread at the time of sewing. The thread might have been used because it was handy, but could probably be anything. I believe they said that tachrichim are sewn on a dead person and this is a siman that we are alive and chas ve shalom not dead. Is there any source for that at all or is it  a superstition?

A: This is an old "minhag" that many families have. While there is no source for it in Halacha, it is still worthwhile to abide by it if it's your family minhag, as "Minhag Yisroel Torah". (See   Shu”t Be’er Moshe Vol. 8 Siman 36:3   that  according to the Rashba we should not dismiss ancient Jewish customs even if we don’t understand them)

894) Q: ​Please can you provide the source for not placing one’s head on one’s bare arm when doing Nefilas Apayim during Tachanun. I have noticed that in hot countries where people wear short sleeve shirts they are doing this. 

A: Correct, it must be on  one's jacket or shirt sleeve, or on something other than  one's own skin, as doing it on the skin is useless as a covering, as the body cannot cover itself. (See Mishna Berura  Siman 131 S" K 3 and Aruch Hashulchan Siman  131:7)

895) Q: ​Are we supposed to daven Shacharis on Shabbos later than during the weekdays?

 

A:It is customary in many communities to begin davening on Shabbos morning a little bit later than during the week.

 

The reason for this is that allowing for a little extra sleep on Shabbos morning is “Oneg Shabbos”.

 

The Poskim (Ram”a 281:2 based on Rav Hai Gaon brought in the Hagohas Mordechai and others) derive this from the language of the pesukim regarding Korbonos (which our Tefilah replaces these days, as we have no Bais Hamikdash yet unfortunately) as follows:

 

By the Korban Tamid of weekdays it says “BaBoker” which means early morning, and by the Korban [Mussaf] of Shabbos (in (Parshas Pinchas) it says “U’Byom Hashabbos” which means by day, but not necessarily so early.

 

However, even though we daven later, it is still important to be careful not to miss Zman Krias Shema due to the late start of davening. (It is best to read Krias Shema before going to shul, on those shabbosim that Zman Krias Shema is early).

 

Note: Not all Poskim agree with this Halacha though. Rashi (Megilah 23a) states clearly based on the Gemara there, that on Shabbos it is more important than the rest of the week to daven at sunrise, or at least earlier than usual! (The Teshuvos HaRambam, Radvaz, Chida, Ben Ish Chai and others pasken like Rashi)

 

The prevalent Minhag in most Ashkenazi communities (that follow the Ram”a) is to start later on Shabbos morning. The prevalent Minhag in many Sephardic communities (who follow the Rambam, Chida, Ben ish Chai etc.) is to begin davening either earlier than, or just as early as the rest of the week.

896) Q: I see people bouncing on their tiptoes when they say the verses of Kedusha during Chazoras Hashatz. Is this a real minhag with a mekor?

 

A: Yes, indeed it is a real minhag and the proper thing to do.

 

The Rama (Siman 125: 2) says to lift the eyes heavenward, and also lift the body when reciting the words Kadosh, Kadosh, Kadosh during Kedusha.

 

The Be'er Heitev (Siman 125 Os 5) quotes the Shla Hakadosh who says to lift the heels and give a little bounce as you say the words Baruch Kevod... and Yimloch Hashem, just as is done by Kadosh, based on a Midrash Tanchuma Parashas Tzav, to liken ourselves to "flying" malachim.

 

Why the comparison to Malachim, and why specifically during Kedusha?

 

This is based on the Talmud (Chulin 91b) that the Malachim do not recite Shira (i.e. Kadosh and Baruch, as per the Gemara there 91b and 92a) in heaven until Klal Yisroel recites kedusha  here below. So in essence, as we say Kedusha, we are signaling to the Malachim in Shomayim and enabling them to say Shira, and this brings tremendous Kidush Shem Shomayim to the universe.

 

The Talmud (ibid.) also teaches that Klal Yisroel is more beloved to Hashem than the Malachim!

897) Q: I’ve been told not to use a serrated knife to cut the challah on shabbos. Is there a makor for this?

 

A: The Rama Siman 250: 1 says it's important to sharpen the knife on Erev Shabbos. The Mishna Berura S" K 5 quotes a Sifri that explains that this is based on a Pasuk, that a dull knife can lead to friction at home, either due to the bread not being cut well, or due to a dull knife making a lot of crumbs, thus Halachically, it's important to have a good, sharp knife, but no difference if it is serrated or smooth. 

 

However, Kabalistically, there is an idea not to use a serrated knife (See Piskei teshuvos , Hilchos Shabbos, Siman 250:4 for mre about this) , and some people are careful with this, though most people are not worried about this.Most challah knives sold in Jewish silver stores, as well as Challah knives in most Jewish homes are serrated

898) Q: On shabbos, should the person doing haftarah or Mussaf go to the side of the bima, so their back isn't to the sefer torah? I understand it's lechatchila for the person holding the sefer torah to position himself to the side, but if he isn't should the baal tefillah move?

 

A: The Mishna Berura Siman 147 S"K 29 says that the one holding the Torah should move to the side, so he should not be directly behind the Baal Koreh and the one getting an aliyah at the Bimah

 

However, Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach Zatzal ruled that we are not Makpid on this. See Halichos Shlomo, Tefila, Perek 12:14 and Dvar Halacha  21, for his reasoning.

899) Q: May one ask an Aino Yehudi to plug in a fan on shabbos? 

 

A: While some poskim allow, if there is a great need, such as if is extremely hot during a heat wave, or if a particular person suffers terribly from the heat (See Shu"t Minchas Yitzchak Vol. 3 Siman 23 and Shu"t Be'er Moshe Vol. 6 Siman 93 and Shemiras Shabbos K'Hilchasa Chapter 30:11) , many Poskim (including Rav Moshe Feinstein in Igros Moshe Yoreh Deah Vol. 3 Siman 47;2, Ohr L'Tzion Vol. 2 Siman 25, Rav Elyashiv in Kobetz Teshuvos Vol. 1 Siman 32 and others) do not allow this, as unlike turning on a heater in the winter, where all are deemed "cholim" due to cold, we do not say the same thing for turning on a fan or air conditioner when it is hot.

 

If one can manage without it, it is definitely best to avoid hinting to an Aino yehudi to do this. If it is extremely necessary, consult a Rav to determine if one can/should rely on the lenient opinions.

900) Q: Is there anything incorrect about taking a haircut or trim on motzei shabbos?

A: While it's not an outright isur, many Poskim maintain that it is not respectful to Shabbos to not have taken a haircut/shave in honor of Shabbos, yet to do so right after Shabbos.

 

Obviously, if a person was unable to do so on Erev Shabbos, or there is a pressing need to do so on Motzaei Shabbos or Sunday, it is allowed.

 

(See Chochmas Shlomo, from Rav Shlomo Kluger Zatzal, Orach Chaim Siman 493:2. Rav Chaim Kanievsky Zatzal also ruled that it is "not proper" to take a haircut close after Shabbos, as haircuts should be taken L'Kavod Shabbos. He brought as a proof, the ruling of the Rama Siman 493:2 that when Lag B'Omer falls on Sunday, haircuts may ( or should?) be taken already on Friday, L'Kavod Shabbos

901) Q: Is there any issue with magic tricks (sleight of hand)? Is there a difference between if it's expressed/obvious that it's being done for entertainment, or it's being passed off as real magic? 

A: Doing “magic” is prohibited.

 

This prohibition applies to any type of magic, real or fake, and even to “sleight of hand”, according to the Rambam (Hilchos Avodas Kochavim Perek 11 Halacha 9) and the Shulchan Aruch (Yoreh Deah Siman 179:25 )

 

Does this apply to “magic shows” nowadays?

 

Rav Moshe Feinstein Zatzal (Shu”t Igros Moshe Yoreh Deah Vol. 4 Siman 13) rules that nowadays when everyone knows that there is no actual magic involved, and it is just optical illusions or sleight of hand, it is permitted to perform such a show.

 

The Yehudi performing these tricks must, however, declare to the audience that there is no actual magic or anything supernatural involved, and it is simply natural sleight of hand that he is performing.  Most Ashkenazim follow this ruling. (This is also the ruling of Shu”t Divrei Yatziv Yoreh Deah siman 57, Shu”t Teshuvos V’Hanhagos Vol. 1 Siman 655 quoting the Chazon Ish, and many other Poskim)

 

Sephardim, however, maintain that it is forbidden for a Yehudi to perform a magic show, even if everyone knows that it is not real magic taking place, and is only a “show” and even if being done for a Mitzvah, such as to cheer up an ill child. (See Shu”t Yabia Omer Yoreh Deah Vol. 5 Siman 14 that this is a biblical prohibition according to the Rambam. However, he rules that a Aino-Yehudi entertainer may be hired to do such a show, if it is being done for a Mitzvah purpose.)

 

For Halacha L’Ma’aseh, of course, each individual should consult their own Rav.

902)  Q: Does a girl need to do hishtadlus for shidduchim? If yes, how much?

 

is tefillah counted as a form of hishtadlus?

 

Does one need to send out a photo?

 

A: Yes, minimal, normal hishtadlus is OK. As long as you recognize that Hashem is in charge 100%, especially with shiduchim. (See Mesilas Yesharim Perek 21)

Tefilah is the MAIN hishtadlus you should do for everything, especially shiduchim. Never stop davening, for yourself and for others. Hashem is the ultimate Shadchan (See Midrash Rabbah Bereishis 68; 3 . See also Igros Chazon Ish Volume 3 letter 62)

 

No, it is not appropriate to send photos. Many Rabbanim and Poskim agree. The "Nix the Pix" movement is 100% correct. It's not a Yiddishe thing. It's not a Tzniysdik thing, and was never done until recently, as it is a tremendous lack of Kedushas Yisroel.

 

Of course, as with everything, each individual should consult their own Rav for guidance.

903) Q: Do we have to stand of for an elderly Aino-Yehudi?

 

A: While there is no Mitzvah to stand up for an elderly Aino Yehudi  it is still proper to treat him respectfully, speak to him respectfully and offer your hand in support etc. if he can use the help. (See Shulchan Aruch Yoreh Deah Siman 244:7 and Kitzur Shulchan Aruch Siman  144:2. See also Kesef Mishna to Rambam Hichos Talmud Torah Perek 6 Halacha 9)

904) Q: Is one allowed to take food out of a bais avel after shiva is finished?

 

A: The accepted minhag amongst many Ashkenazim is not to remove anything from the home during shiva, as there is a Ruach Tumah on them for the duration of the Shiva. (See Chidushei Rav Akiva Eiger to Yoreh Deah Siman 376:4)

 

Some say it only applies to items that belonged to the person who passed away.

 

Once shiva is over, it is no longer an issue, and food can be taken out, and eaten without any worries.

905) Q: Who has Kedima to daven for te amud, a shloishim or a yohrzeit?

A: There are varying opinions as to who has kedima, a yahrtzeit or a Shloshim (provided it is a full 30 days from kevurah) .

 

The common custom when you have both present is to split the davening, where one of them does until Ashrei- Uva L'Tzin and the other one takes over from there. See Shu"t Igros Moshe Yoreh Deah Vol. 4 Siman 60:1 

 

Of course, each persom should consult with the Rav or Gabbai inthe Shul, and follow their directives, as to the Minhag Hamakom.

906) Q: How far does one have to go to find a minyan? Is there a difference between maariv and other tefillos?

A:One is obligated to go up to a "mil" to daven with a minyan for all Tefilos. (A "mil" is 18 minutes walking)

 

If you are driving, the Poskim say you have to drive up to 18 minutes to daven with a minyan, not only calculate the distance of a "mil" which is the distance given for walking.(See Sefer Ishei Yisroel Perek 8 footnote 70)

907) Q: Does a convert sit shiva for a parent that passes away?

A: There is no obligation for a Ger Tzedek to sit shiva for his Aino-Yehudi parents. (See Kitzur Shulchan Aruch Siman 203)



According to some Poskim, if he wants to, he may sit shiva. (See Shu't Yechaveh Da'as Vol. 6 Siman 60)

 

For Halacha L'Maaseh every individual should consult their Rav.

908) Q: Can a sheitel be trimmed during the 3 weeks and 9 days?

 

A: During the 3 weeks, yes. During the Nine days it shod not be cut or set professionally.

#BeinHametzorim

909) Q: Are there any differences for Tisha B'Av that is observed on Sunday?

 

A:The only differences when Tisha B'Av falls on Sunday (or on Shabbos, and thus pushed to Sunday, as is the case this year, 5782) are:

 

1) There is no Seuda Hamafseket before the fast.

 

2) The  Tisha B'av shoes and other public displays of mourning start at the zman, instead of at sunset. Eating, drinking etc. is asur already at shkiah.

 

3) Havdalah is postponed until Sunday night.

 

Otherwise, all halachos of the actual fast are identical.

910) Q: Does one need to wash his hands with a kli (or at all) when dipping cookies into milk if one is makpid on Tibul B'Mashkeh? And are you supposed to be makpid on that or is it a chumra that you can choose to do or not do?

 

A: You are referring to a halacha known as "Tibul B'mashkeh". (See Shulchan Aruch Siman 158), and yes, it would apply to cookies dipped in milk.

 

"Tibul B'mashkeh" is literally translated as "dipped in a liquid", and refers to the halachic requirement to wash one's hands before eating any food that is wet with one of the following seven liquids: wine, bee's honey, olive oil, milk, dew, blood, or water. (The acronym for these seven liquids is yad (yayin, dvash) shachat(shemen, chalav, tal) dam (dam, mayim). Of course, blood is forbidden to eat, but the Mishna Berura points out that in cases of medical necessity or other Pikuach Nefesh it would be allowed, and in that case it would require washing, thus it is listed as one of the 7 liquids)

 

While there are definitely poskim who are lenient nowadays with this (for a variety of reasons, including the fact that we eat with utensils and not with our hands), the Mishna Berura (Siman 158 S"K 12) and others are stringent and maintain that this halacha is still in force nowadays and one should be careful to wash, albeit without a bracha. The Kitzur Shulchan Aruch (Siman 40:17) writes that many are lenient with this, but a G-d fearing person should be stringent with this. The Taz (Siman 473:6) also rebues those who are lenient with this.

 

The Mishna Berura (Siman 158 S"K 12) says that this halacha only applies to items which are usual to dip in liquid or otherwise eat while wet.

 

For halacha l'maaseh every individual should consult their Rav.

911) Q: Is it Halachically permissible for a woman to post a profile picture on an online business platform? (A modest photo, obviously)

 

A: There is no short answer for this, so I will give you a long one.

 

The virtual world of today (such as Facebook, WhatsApp and the like), and even the platforms that are intended for business only (Such as LinkedIn) has many pitfalls that a Torah observant Jew must be extremely careful about. Not only are all the halachos of Tznius, Yichud, Hirhurei Aveira, Histaklus, Moshav Leitzim, Lashon Hara, Kefirah etc. that apply offline applicable online as well sometimes they are even more applicable online, as people are less inhibited online, and will often fall in ways they would never dream of falling in real life. This is a sad fact that has been proven all too many times.

 

Thus, it is important to be extremely vigilant, and discuss with a Rav or other Yerei Shomayim, if and how you may utilize any of these platforms in the first place. Just because "everyone is doing it" doesn't mean it is right, and certainly doesn't mean it's necessarily right for you. 

 

Even if your Rav gave the OK to utilize such platforms, it is still your responsibility to present yourself on these platforms in accordance with the Torah's mandates, with no compromises. Some of the things to consider are: Should you post a photo of yourself there? If yes, what kind of photo will it be? Will that photo cause people of the opposite gender to stumble? Just because it seems "modest" to you, does not mean it is automatically OK to post it, as there is more to modesty than just covering specific areas of the body.

 

These are serious considerations, and should be taken extremely seriously as if your life depended on it; because it does, both in this world and in the next.

 

This applies as well to your WhatsApp profile picture, as your contacts will see whatever you post there. Is it appropriate to post a picture of you and your spouse in a less than formal situation for the world to see? Is it appropriate for business colleagues to see you in a casual way?

 

How should you post your name on these platforms? If you are a married person, it is more in line with the Torah to use a title that indicates this. First names between genders can lead to halachic issues. Using "Mrs." before a name can make a tremendous difference, and make it clear to people that there are boundaries. Just because people may poke fun at you, or make you feel bad for doing what is right and living with Torah principles, doesn't mean you should not do so. Care more about what Hashem has to say and less about what people have to say. (See the very first Rama in Shulchan Aruch, Siman 1:1) This will bring tremendous bracha to your life, as where there is Kedusha there is bracha, where there is a lack of Kedusha, there is a lack of bracha. The Torah says so quite explicitly in many places. (Also, remember, Rashi in Parasha, Matos, 31:16, tells us that Bilam Harasha's wicked advice to remove Hashem's protection from Klal Yisroel was to get the Yidden involved in Znus, immorality, as " The G-d of the Jewish people despises immorality")

 

What kind of salutations are you using in your communications? "Hello" or "Hi" may be OK, while "Hey!" or "Wassup?" or certain emojis or other non-business related or personal conversation may be tremendously inappropriate between members of the opposite gender. In fact, private messages, in general, should be avoided altogether, as too often they are a springboard to forbidden conversation, familiarity or worse R"L, which is prohibited.

 

Chazal teach us (Kesubos 13b) "Ain Apotropus L'Arayos", there are no guardians when it comes to immorality, meaning that everyone, no matter how good they are, no matter how much they think they would never do certain things, no matter how much Torah they have learned, nobody is protected. Once they cross certain lines or certain barriers, they are all but certain to succumb to the powers of the Yetzer Hara. That is why Chazal made so many Gedarim, fences, in these areas, and each individual must make further fences for him/herself to ensure that no lines are crossed. This is true in real life and just as true online. In fact, the easier it becomes to sin, the more fences are necessary to protect yourself from those sins. Thus, as the morally bankrupt society around us "breaks down barriers" at a dizzying pace, it is incumbent on us, as Torah Jews to "put up more barriers" to combat it.

 

Most intellectually honest frum people are sensitive enough to understand all of the above, even if they struggle with some of these things in practice, and if they would just take a moment or two to think about it, internalize it and choose properly, they would make better choices.

 

Most of the people who choose wrongly in these areas, is due to them not thinking it through! THINK! It's a good thing to do before doing anything, saying anything, going anywhere, participating in an activity etc. the Yetzer Hara works hard to keep our minds numb so we don't think properly. "Ata Chonen L''Adam Da'as!" Hashem gave us da'as; we must daven for more and more, and we must daven to utilize it!

 

We are living in a generation with a lot of Nisyonos, but remember, Hashem put you in this generation, which means He trusts you to be able to pass the tests! Even if we fall on occasion, we must get up, again and again and again and keep fighting! Even if we lose a battle here or there, we must stay in the fight and ultimately win the war!

 

Hashem gave you the tools to win. Use those tools and stand proud in the knowledge that you are Hashem's child, you are Hashem's soldier, you are Hashem's pride and joy!

 

May the Yetzer Hara be slaughtered real soon, with the arrival of Mashiach, and may we all once again live in complete holiness according to the Torah's mandate of "V'Haya Machanecha Kadosh!"

912)  Q: In a year when Tsha B'av falls out on Shabbos   and thus the fast is observed on the following day, Sunday, do we say that there is no 'shavua shechal bo' at all (as is the case when Tisha B'av actually falls out on Sunday (as per Mishna Berura siman 551 S"K 38) or on the contrary do we deem the entire preceding week as 'shavua shechal bo'?

 

A: The Shulchan Aruch (siman 551:4) in the first opinion rules that there is no 'shavua shechal bo' and none of its stringencies apply that year. (as although the ninth of av was on shabbos we treat the day we observe it, Sunday the 10th of av, as if it was the 9th. See also Shulchan Aruch siman 554:19 where he rules like this opinion as well, removing all prohibitions of Tisha B'av when it falls out on Shabbos and transferring them to the following day.)

 

However, in the second opinion he rules that the entire preceding week is treated as 'shavua shechal bo' (as although we don't observe the fast on the 9th, due to its being Shabbos, it is still deemed Tisha B'av) with the exception of Thursday and Friday which due to kavod shabbos we don't give them a stringent status. (the Rama in siman 554:19 rules like this opinion and prohibits marital relations on this Shabbos, as only public displays of mourning were postponed to the following day, but otherwise the 9th retains its status as Tisha B'av. See Mishna Berura siman 554 S"K 40 regarding if and when we rule like the Shulchan Aruch or the Rama in this situation. See also Shu"t Avnei Nezer orach chaim siman 426 for a lengthier discussion of this machlokes.)

 

For halacha l'ma'aseh as to whether 'shavua shechal bo' applies to Sunday through Wednesday, the 3rd through the 6th of Av, a Rav should be consulted.

913) Is one able to give an engagement ring to his kallah during the nine days?  If halachically it's okay, is there still an inyan to wait till after?

 

Also, wondering, if it's ready right before the 9 days, is it better not to give right before, since she will have major enjoyment from it throughout the 9 days (it's new, she just got it)

A: It is prohibited to buy or give expensive gifts during the nine days. This includes an engagement ring which brings tremendous joy.

#TishaBav #BeinHametzorim

914)  Q: Does a pregnant woman have to sit on the floor on Tisha B'Av if it is difficult for her?

 

A: Pregnant women, as well as elderly and infirm individuals who find it extremely difficult or almost impossible to sit on the floor or on low, uncomfortable chairs, may sit on regular chairs, as they are not doing this for pleasure purposes. (See Nit'ei Gavriel, Bein Hametzorim, page 391)

915) Q: If the baal tokea made the brochas for the tzibur, but was unable to blow the first set of tokea's, would the person taking him over need to repeat the brochos? 

A: No new bracha, so long as the one taking over was there at the time of the original bracha. See Shulchan Aruch Siman 585:3