Sunday, July 27, 2014

Mayim acharonim for women


The Talmud states that one must wash his hands before reciting the birkat hamazon blessing after eating. Two different reasons are presented - one regarding sanctity, and the other regarding a coarse salt in one's food which could endanger one's eyes if he were to touch them. Either way, this applies for men and women alike.

(Rivivot Ephraim 1:140:3)

[And of course, the note in the previous post regarding washing in order to have clean hands when reciting birkat hamazon also applies to men and women alike. - MT]

המצפה לישועה,


  1. In some homes I observe (1) no one washing mayim acharonim, or, (2) only men washing mayim acharonim. How does one arrive at these other practices? Does it mean that mayim acharonim is a minhag, not a halacha? - Michael Felder

  2. Michael-
    1. The first practice likely comes from the fact that the gemara links mayim acharonim to the abovementioned salt, and Tosafos says we don't have this salt among us. [Of course, this does not eliminate the other reason.]

    2. I am not sure.