Thursday, October 2, 2014

Taking medication on Yom Kippur


Note: The following is Rabbi Moshe Feinstein's position regarding a particular circumstance, and is brought only for illustrative purposes. For personal questions, please consult a competent halachic authority who knows you and understands your medical condition.
One who is suffering from an illness which, left untreated, could result in a potentially fatal illness, is considered to be 'dangerously ill' in the eyes of Jewish law. Such a person may take a pill (for his current illness) on Yom Kippur with water, if he cannot take the pill dry.

(Rav Moshe Feinstein, Igrot Moshe Orach Chaim 3:91)

גמר חתימה טובה,

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

"Hecha Kedushah"


Rabbi Moshe Isserles wrote that when the time available for minchah is short, one should begin reciting the amidah along with the chazan's repetition. However, contemporary practice is to have the chazan recite the beginning of his repetition, through kedushah, and then have the community recite their silent amidah, and have the chazan finish his recitation silently.

[This is the phenomenon known as "hecha kedushah".]

(Rivivot Ephraim 1:166:2)

גמר חתימה טובה,

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Missing davening due to business


One who missed davening [prayer] due to business should recite the next amidah twice; he is not viewed as having been careless. This is true even if there had been time to pray earlier in the day, and it was only at the end that he became embroiled in his work and he missed the time to pray.

Of course, one should make sure to pray early in the acceptable timeframe if he anticipates that such a circumstance might arise.

(Rivivot Ephraim 1:166:1)

גמר חתימה טובה,

Monday, September 29, 2014

Do we go back to say Tachanun?


Normally, after the morning shacharit and afternoon minchah amidah, we recite Tachanun, and then the chazan recites kaddish. If the chazan mistakenly goes straight to kaddish, what should the community do?

The chazan does finish kaddish, but there are multiple practices regarding what happens next, including:
1. The community continues from there, without reciting Tachanun, because Tachanun was supposed to be linked to the amidah;
2. The community recites Tachanun, since they did not interrupt between the amidah and Tachanun, but the chazan does not recite it;
3. Everyone recites Tachanun.

Communities should follow their own practice. However, even if Tachanun is recited, the kaddish should not be repeated.

(Rivivot Ephraim 1:165)

Gmar tov,

Sunday, September 28, 2014

The Fast of Gedalyah


We fast on the day after Rosh haShanah; this is called "Tzom Gedalyah," "The Fast of Gedalyah."

The Meaning of the Fast: After the Babylonians destroyed the Temple, they appointed Gedalyah as governor of Israel's Jews. A group of Jews, supported by another nation, wanted the Jews to rebel against the Babylonians, and they accused Gedalyah of sympathizing with the Babylonians. They ambushed him and killed him, and in the aftermath the remaining Jews in Israel went into exile.

This day is commemorated as a public fast from first light to the emergence of the stars. In a year like this one, when the day after Rosh HaShanah is Shabbat, we fast on the following day.

(Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim 549:1; Mishneh Berurah 549:2)

Have an easy and meaningful fast,

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Kiddush Levanah before Yom Kippur?


Some say that one should not recite Kiddush Levanah during the Aseret Yemei Teshuvah, the days between Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur, because those are days of fear and worry regarding the outcome of one's Judgment, and Kiddush Levanah is to be recited in joy.

Others disagree, because we want to accumulate mitzvot and because we are concerned that clouds might cause a person to miss Kiddush Levanah altogether because of the long delay.

(Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim 426:2; Magen Avraham 426:5; Aruch haShulchan Orach Chaim 426:8; Mishneh Berurah 426:9)

כתיבה וחתימה טובה,

Monday, September 22, 2014

Preparing an eruv tavshilin for others


Although the purpose of the Eruv Tavshilin is for each household to individually begin its Shabbat preparations before the preceding Yom Tov, one may actually create an Eruv Tavshilin on behalf of others who have forgotten to create their own.

When one does this, one includes an additional phrase in the Eruv dedication, stating that the Eruv is "for us and for all Jews living in this town," as noted in the Artscroll Siddur pg. 654. One must also give the Eruv Tavshilin to someone else to acquire on behalf of those other people.

However, those who forget to create their own Eruv Tavshilin may only rely on this on rare occasion; because this method really defeats the purpose of Eruv Tavshilin, one may not regularly rely on others' Eruvei Tavshilin.

(Code of Jewish Law Orach Chaim 527:7; Mishneh Berurah 527:22)

Have a great day,