The Torah is in the Hands of the Jewish Nation

Our Sages teach us in the Gemara (Berachot 5a) that Hashem does not conduct himself like human beings, for when a human being sells an object to another, the seller is upset about the loss of the object he was forced to sell and the buyer is happy about the acquisition of his new purchase. On the other hand, when Hashem gave His Torah to … Continue reading The Torah is in the Hands of the Jewish Nation

The Bedtime Keri’at Shema

Question: Is it obligatory to read the bedtime Keri’at Shema? Similarly, should the blessing of “Hamapil” printed in Siddurim be recited before Keri’at Shema including Hashem’s name? Answer: The Gemara (Berachot 60b) states: “One who goes into bed to sleep recites the blessing ‘Hamapil Chevlei Shena Al Einai.’” The Tosafot and Mordechi write that all of the blessings quoted in the final chapter of Masechet Berachot must … Continue reading The Bedtime Keri’at Shema

One’s Wisdom

“When One’s Wisdom is Greater than One’s Deeds, One’s Wisdom Shall Not Last” The Mishnah in Pirkei Avot (Chapter 3, Mishnah 12) states: “When one’s deeds are greater than one’s wisdom, one’s wisdom shall last; when one’s wisdom is greater than one’s deeds, one’s wisdom shall not last.” The Tashbetz explains in his Sefer Magen Avot regarding this teaching that this cannot be understood according … Continue reading One’s Wisdom

Megillah Reading- Corona virus

Every member of the Jewish nation is obligated to read the Megillah on the day of Purim. One must read it during the night and once again the next day, as the verse states, “My G-d, I call out to you during the day and you do not answer; during the night I have no rest.” This verse is written in the chapter of Tehillim … Continue reading Megillah Reading- Corona virus

Lighting the Chanukah Candles

The Mitzvah of Lighting Chanukah CandlesThere is a Mitzvah to light Chanukah candles throughout all eight nights of Chanukah (beginning from next Thursday night). The Sephardic custom is to light one set of Chanukah candles per house. The Ashkenazi custom, however, is that every member of the household lights his own Chanukah candles. The Amount of OilWhen lighting Chanukah candles, one should be certain to … Continue reading Lighting the Chanukah Candles

Life-Threatening Situation

Uncertainty About a Life-Threatening Situation Question: If one desecrates Shabbat on behalf of an ill person and it turns out that the action one performed that desecrated the Shabbat was actually unnecessary, does one require atonement for this transgression? Answer: If one desecrated Shabbat for no good reason, such as driving on Shabbat under non-life-threatening circumstances, certainly when one repents for one’s sin, one will need to … Continue reading Life-Threatening Situation

Muktzeh Due to Monetary Loss

“Muktzeh Due to Monetary Loss” In the previous Halachot, we have discussed several laws regarding Muktzeh which are certain objects that our Sages prohibited moving on Shabbat. As of yet, we have discussed three types of Muktzeh: “Utensils used for work permitted on Shabbat”, such as forks, knives, and the like, which may be moved on Shabbat for any purpose, but may not be moved for … Continue reading Muktzeh Due to Monetary Loss

Mentioning “Mashiv Ha’Ruach”

We Begin Reciting “Mashiv Ha’Ruach”“Mashiv Ha’Ruach U’Morid Ha’Geshem” is a praise we recite to Hashem during the winter months within the “Mechayeh Ha’Metim” blessing of the Amidah as is printed in all Siddurim. We begin reciting “Mashiv Ha’Ruach U’Morid Ha’Geshem” in the Mussaf prayer of Simchat Torah (outside of Israel from Shemini Atzeret). This recitation does not constitute a request or plea for rain; rather, … Continue reading Mentioning “Mashiv Ha’Ruach”

Chol Ha’Mo’ed

The days between the first and seventh days (outside of Israel between the second and eighth days) of the Pesach holiday and the days between the first day of Sukkot and the holiday of Shemini Atzeret (outside of Israel between the second day of Sukkot and Shemini Atzeret) are called “Chol Ha’Mo’ed”- the intermediate days of the holiday. The Torah calls these days “Occasions of … Continue reading Chol Ha’Mo’ed

“One Who Hears is Like One Who Recites”

In the previous Halachot we have discussed the laws of blessings of thanksgiving, such as the “Ha’Gomel” blessing, which require several conditions in order to recite them. Now we shall explain the law of “one who hears is like one who recites”. Our Sages teach us in Masechet Sukkah (38b) an important rule that applies to all Mitzvot of the Torah related to speaking (reciting), … Continue reading “One Who Hears is Like One Who Recites”

Maran zt”l’s Tefillin-Checking

The month of Elul is meant as a time of self-introspection for the entire Jewish nation. It is therefore customary to pay attention to which Tefillin and Mezuzot need checking and to have them checked at this time. The Rambam writes: “If one writes Tefillin by himself or buys them from an expert or from any other person and checks them and returns them to … Continue reading Maran zt”l’s Tefillin-Checking

Repentance Among the Nations

Repentance Among the Nations of the World Question: Yesterday, we discussed the concept that repentance is a novel idea Hashem granted to the Jewish nation. Does the concept of repenting for one’s sins not apply to the other nations of the world as well? Answer: The Midrash Tanchuma (Parashat Nitzavim) states: “When the Jewish nation does Hashem’s will, Hashem is present for them to accept … Continue reading Repentance Among the Nations