1. KITZUR SHULCHAN ARUCH
C 1 , י T T ״ , 1 לאינטרנט והוכנס הועתק
Shulchan HaMalach www.hebrewbooks.org
תשס״ט חיים ע״י
Selected and gathered by a pure and holy soul, one of the leading
Rabbis and Torah scholars of Aram-Zoba (Haleb) of the previous
generations, Maharan Harav
Shmuel Laniado z"al
from his holy writings, and printed in the year 1923
with a supplement containing miscellanious other laws collected from
the Shulchan Aruch and the works of other Achronim relevant to
our age, named
Ezra Basri shlitah
Chief Justice, District Court, Jerusalem
2. שמורות הזכויות כל
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3. ע״י םרתנ הז ר פ ם
טרוםניא תידוהי תרבגהו
ת מ ש נ ולעלוי רכזל
ע״ה טרוסגיא ןוגרם ףסוי
הזו הלודגה הוצמה תוכז
םימרותה לע ןגת
הכרבלו הבוטל ם ב ל ת ו ל א ש מ אלמי וה׳
THIS KISSUR S H U L H A N A R O U K H
IS D E D I C A T E D B Y
M R . MRS. DAVID S A R G O N AINSWORTH
I N M E M O R Y OF
THEIR BELOVED FATHER
AND FATHER IN LAW
JOSEPH SARGON AINSWORTH
We are privileged to publish the second volume of the Kitzur
Shulchan Aruch, 'Shulchan Hamalech' , composed by one of the
unique Torah Gedolim of Aram-Zoba, The Most Honorable Harav
Shmuel Toledano zatzal. To this we added the supplement called
'Al HaShulchan', which is an addendum containing laws relevant
to the period following that of the book's author up to our present
era. This appendix is similar to what was done in the first volume.
This present volume, however, deals with all the laws of Shabbat.
The merit of our master, the author, has brought about that
the first volume should be favorably received, with many readers
establishing classes for it's study, as well as it being taught and
studied as a subject in schools. So much so, that within a short
span of time we have had to bow to requests to print a second
edition. In addition, many appeals have been made to have the
book translated into various languages.
Special mention is made of the dear sons and daughters of
Avraham Zfatiya zatzal, who have merited to contribute to the
publishing of this book. And as they have aided and assisted from the
beginning, so may they continue demonstrating their love and joy in
their ongoing assitance. May the merit of Torah and that of this
precious mitzvah stand by their side and that of their offspring, and
may Hashem fulfill all their wishes; may they also merit the founding
of a generation of righteous children, amidst health, satisfaction,
happiness, joy, wealth, and abundance.
I hope and pray that we shall be able to continue and complete
the third and last volume of this work, which will include all
laws of daily behavior, as well as going on to print other worthy
5. publications. Not as much in my own merit, but that of my famous
and holy forefathers, such as Our Master and The Exilarch of
Babylonia, Harav Yosef Chaim, who was my grandmother's uncle,
and his father, Rabbeinu Eliyahu, who was the grandfather of my
grandmother. Also, that of my grandfather, the Gaon and Holy
Kabbalist, the Most Honorable Rav Yehudah Padiah, author of
the book Beth Lecham Yehudah and other voumles, my other
grandfather, the Most Honorable Ezra Abadi Dahab zatzal and
his father, the Holy Kabbalist Harav Yitzchak Dahab, the Most
Honorable Abdallah Somech, and my master Harav David Naweh,
as well as other great and mighty figures whose merit no doubt will
come to the assistance of their descendants.
May their merit stand by all that aid and support the Mechon
HaKtav, for by their assistance we have been able to reach the stage
where, up to the; present, we have succeeded in publishing close to
one hundred important books embracing all aspects of Judaism,
written by Torah leaders of all epochs. For many are those that
profoundly wish to become familiar with their works, saying, "Who
will show us good", 'good' being Torah.
For additional details on the book, see foreword of the first
Deserving of blessing as well are the workers and assistants of
the Machon, each one of which has a share in all the holy books
which have been published; may the merit of their authors stand by
them, that they may be blessed in whatever they undertake
Table of Contents
Chapter One The laws of a Jew having a non-Jewish partner, or
renting and loaning to a non-Jew as concerns Shabbat, and if he
did work for a Jew on Shabbat. Also, how to deal with mail on
Erev Shabbat and Shabbat.
Chapter Two The law of one traveling by caravan on Shabbat,
and laws concerning behavior on Erev Shabbat.
Chapter Three The laws of preparing the Shabbat meal, and the
prohibition against performing work after the time of mincha on
Chapter Four Work which may and may not be begun on Erev
Shabbat, if it will be completed afterward automatically.
Chapter Five Candle-lighting time on Erev Shabbat, and if one
erred on a overcast day.
Chapter Six The law of someone on the road at sunset.
Chapter Seven If one errs in the Shabbat prayers.
Chapter Eight The laws of kiddush, and which wine is to be used;
the requirement of having the meal immediately following kiddush ,
and the cutting of the challah.
Chapter Nine Which activities are forbidden to be carried out by
the aid of the candle-light, and the law of a candle lit by a non-Jew
7. Chapter Ten Moving the candle on Shabbat.
Chapter Eleven Several of the laws concerning the haftorah and
it's blessings, the obligation to read the weekly Torah portion twice,
once with the targum, and the laws of the Shabbat musaph prayer.
Chapter Twelve Accepting a tdanit yechid comforting the bereaved,
and visiting the ill on Shabbat.
Chapter Thirteen The morning meal and the seudah shlishit of
Chapter Fourteen havdalah of the Evening Prayer, and the laws
of havdalah on wine, candles, and spices.
Chapter Fifteen That one may not eat or perform any work before
making havdalah; the melavah malka.
Chapter Sixteen Which subjects may be discussed on Shabbat.
Chapter Seventeen Objects that may and not be handled on
Chapter Eighteen Under which conditions a muktzah object may
be moved on Shabbat, and the laws of muktzah.
Chapter Nineteen The laws of handling a corpse on Shabbat;
certain laws concerning one wishing to relieve himself on Shabbat.
Chapter Twenty The moving of a door, window, or door bolt on
Shabbat, and the laws concerning those actions which are forbidden
on Shabbat because of building or demolishing.
Chapter Twenty-One Actions which are forbidden on Shabbat
because of their similarity to constructing a tent.
8. Chapter Twenty-Two Which forms of trapping are permitted on
Shabbat and which not; causing a wound on Shabbat.
Chapter Twenty-Three The laws of forming a knot on Shabbat.
Chapter Twenty-Four Cooking on Shabbat.
Chapter Twenty-Five The laws of sifting and squeezing on
Chapter Twenty-Six The laws of plucking, grinding, and preparing
food on Shabbat. In addition, how to deal with food processing on
Chapter Twenty-Seven The laws of borrowing or buying for the
Shabbat, and rinsing, repairing, and immersing utensils on Shabbat.
Chapter Twenty-eight The preparing of animal feed on Shabbat,
and if a non-Jew performed work for a Jew.
Chapter Twenty-Nine Washing and anointing on Shabbat.
Chapter Thirty The laws pertaining to an ill person on Shabbat,
and when the Shabbat may be violated for his sake.
Chapter Thirty-One The laws pertaining to an expectant mother
and the newly-born infant on Shabbat.
Chapter Thirty-Two The laws of dealing with a fire on Shabbat,
and how to rectify an act of Shabbat desecration.
Chapter Thirty-Three Making use of a tree and walking on grass
9. Chapter Thirty-Four The laws of cleaning the house, and what
to do after performing an unintentional melachah .
Chapter Thirty-Five Actions which are forbidden on Shabbat
because of creating a sound.
Chapter Thirty-Six Various laws pertinent to Shabbat, and actions
which are similar to Shabbat toldot.
Chapter Thirty-Seven The law of annulling vows on Shabbat.
Chapter Thirty-Eight Actions which may be performed during
bein hasmoshot, despite the Rabbinical prohibition.
Chapter Thirty-Nine The laws of making an eruv on a Yom-
Tov falling on Erev Shabbat, and what may be done during bein
hasmoshat for creating the eruv.
Chapter Forty The laws of carrying on Shabbat.
Chapter Forty-One The cleaning and folding of clothes on
Chapter Forty-Two Additional laws concerning clothes and shoes
Chapter Forty-Three Playing games on Shabbat and Yom-Tov.
Chapter Forty-Four The Shabbat obligations of a minor.
Chapter Forty-Five Various Shabbat laws which are relevant
mainly to women.
Chapter Forty-Six Various laws which deal with books on
10. Chapter One 1
Part Two of Hilchot Shabbat
What a Jew having a non-Jewish partner must do
for Shabbat, and the laws of renting and loaning to
a non-Jew and if he did work for a Jew on Shabbat.
Also, how to deal with mail delivered on either Erev
Shabbat or Shabbat.
1. A Jew who is partner to a non-Jew in a store open all days of
the week, should do as follows to prevent chillul shabbat: when
they first enter into negotiations for setting up the partnership,
an understanding should be reached with the non-Jew where all
profits grossed on Shabbat will be his, whatever they amount
to, and in return the Jew will receive all the profits of any
other week-day. If this stipulation was not initially made, the
non-Jew is then to receive the total profits of all the Shabbatot,
with the remainder divided evenly between the partners. If the
Shabbat earnings are unknown, the non-Jew takes one-seventh
of the total profits, leaving the remainder for an even division.
(Shulcan Aruch, 245)
11. 2 Chapter One
2. If the two partners had at first reached an agreement where the
Shabbat profits will be solely the non-Jew's, and the non-Jew then
wishes to share the Shabbat profits equally, the Jew may assent
to receiving them.
3. If the two partners never reached an agreement which would have
solved the problem of chillul shabbat, and the Jew later wishes
to make such an agreement, the solution is to first dissolve the
partnership completely, then begin anew in accordance with the
4. A Jew may give a non-Jew money for business purposes, knowing
full-well that he will make use it of it on the Shabbat, with the Jew
afterward sharing in the profits. The reason being, that since the
non-Jew is not a shaliach of the Jew, whereby it can be said that
he is doing the Jew's work for him, and any profits earned cannot
be directly linked to the Jew, no violation of Shabbat is taking
5. A Jew is permitted to give merchandise to a non-Jew to be sold
by him for a fixed wage, on the condition that he doesn't tell him
to specifically sell it on Shabbat.
6. If a Jew received a non-Jew's bakery as security for a loan, the
agreement being that it's earnings would go toward repayment
of the loan, the bakery may be left open on Shabbat since it
is in the non-Jews possession. The Jew plays no part in it's
operation, neither does he request the non-Jew to keep it open for
business on Shabbat; if the non-Jew chooses to do so in order to
pay off the loan, that's his own personal decision, and has no
bearing on the Jew.
13. 4 Chapter One
7. A Jew may not rent or loan his animal to a non-Jew on Shabbat
for it to be used then, for a Jew is commanded to allow his animals
to rest on Shabbat. If he rented or loaned him the animal on
the condition that the animal would be returned before Shabbat,
and due to unforeseen circumstances it wasn't returned, the
Jew must either declare before the onset of Shabbat that he is
relinquishing ownership of his animal, or let the non-Jew know it
now belongs to him (Magen Avraham). By this, he is preventing
himself from violating the Torah transgression against allowing
one's beast to labor on the Shabbat. The Magen Avraham also
states that this law applies to Yom Tov as well.
8. If a Jew rented his animal to a non-Jew for labor purposes, with
the non-Jew accepting all responsibilities and liabilities the animal
may possibly entail, since the non-Jew may still not sell it, the
animal is considered as still belonging to the Jew.
9. A Jew who has part ownership of an animal together with a
non-Jew , may allow him to use the animal on Shabbat after first
agreeing, at the time of the animal's purchase, that profits earned
on Shabbat will go to the non-Jew only, with the Jew receiving
the entire earnings of an other day (after which they may then
agree to combine and divide them equally - Magen Avraham). If
they never stipulated at the time of the animal's purchase, they
may not make a provision for Shabbat use afterward. Should
the animal be loaned to the non-Jewish partner under conditions
which would allow him to sell it without the Jew's consent, he
may then work the animal on Shabbat.
10. An other opinion would allow the non-Jew partner to work the
animal on Shabbat even if he does not have the right to sell
it; but, only by means of a loan designed to make the animal
serve as collateral for the Jew. In other words, the non-Jew would
first borrow the Jew's half-share in the animal, with his share of
the animal then serving as the Jew's security (according to one
opinion, should the non-Jew then default, full ownership reverts
15. 6 Chapter One
to the Jew only at the time of the actual default, not retroactively
from the date of the loan). An other opinion would permit the non-
Jew to use the animal on Shabbat, after the Jew first warning
him not to work it on that day. This notification would then be
officially registered in court. The implication being, that should
the non-Jew then use the animal on Shabbat against the Jew's
wishes, all liabilities incurred by the animal would automatically
revert to the non-Jew, making him in fact the sole owner. (Note:
All the above-mentioned possibilities are permissible, and any
one of them can be used, even if the animal is the sole property
of the Jew).
1. Anything a Jew is forbidden to do on Shabbat, he may not
request that a non-Jew do for him instead. Furthermore, even
if the Jew does not explicitly make the request, but the non-Jew
voluntarily performed the work for him, the Jew may not derive
any benefit from it on Shabbat. That is, he must wait until after
havdalah, and allow the amount of time to elapse which would
have sufficed for carrying out the work from start to finish.
2. Despite the fact that one may not allow a non-Jew to do
work for a Jew on Shabbat, whether gratis or in return for
pay, (e.g., a salaried worker who performs the work routinely
without need of the express command of a Jew), he may, under
certain conditions, do work for a Jew. If he was contracted to
carry out a particular job in return for a pre-determined fee
to be paid on completion, irrespective of when or where the
non-Jew does it, he may continue working on Shabbat, on
condition that the Jew does not make a request that he work
17. 8 The laws of a Jew having a non-Jewish partner
In addition, the Jew may present him with the task on Erev
Shabbat immediately before sunset, knowing full-well that he
will begin working on Shabbat. This is true too when the Jew
is interested in him completing it as soon as possible, even
working through Shabbat. This is permitted since the non-
Jew is interested in completing the job as quickly as possible
so as to be paid for it all the sooner, while the Jew never
requested explicitly that he work on the Shabbat. However,
care should be taken that the non-Jew doesn't work in the
Jew's home, where people, not knowing that the non-Jew is a
contracted worker, may get the wrong impression.
To sum up, there are three conditions to be fulfilled before a
Jew requests a non-Jew to perform work for him on Shabbat:
1) The non-Jew is a contracted worker with a fixed fee to be paid
2) He should not be expressly told to work on Shabbat,
3) The non-Jew does not work in the home of the Jew.
3. The law mentioned in the above paragraph applies only when the
work done by the non-Jew is performed on materials detached
from the ground, where the non-Jew can take them home and
complete the job there. However, as concerns work performed
to attached materials, such as harvesting crops or building a
house, it is forbidden even by means of a contractor. Since
the work is obviously being carried out for a Jew, suspicion
might arise that he is a hired worker, not a contractor. Even
work performed on detached materials, if it is well-known and
manifest to all that a Jew stands behind it, and the work is being
done in an publicly visible area (such as a ship tied up at dock),
it is forbidden lest an erroneous impression be created.
19. 10 The laws of a Jew having a non-Jewish partner
However, contractual work which a non-Jew does at his own
home, as long as it isn't common knowledge that the specific
job he is working on is being done for a Jew, the Rabbis did
not forbid it.
4. If one built a house and left a mound of waste before it, and
then, after contracting a non-Jew to remove it, he arrived on
Shabbat to begin work, the Jew need not tell the non-Jew
to desist from working and return the following day; in spite
of the fact that all know that is the Jew's waste, it is also
common knowledge that such material is normally removed
by contracted labor.
5. Despite the above-mentioned law (para. 3) that a non-Jew
may perform work for a Jew on detached materials if done
on a contractual basis and at the non-Jew's home, this refers
only to those materials which will not be attached aftterward.
Otherwise, as for example, stone or wood carving, carpentry
work done on house panels, etc., which all are to eventually
become part of the house, they are to be treated no differently
than any other attached object. The non-Jew therefore cannot
do the work in his own home, even if isn't evident that the
work is being done for the Jew. Should the Jew becomes aware
of the fact that the non-Jew is doing work for him at his home,
he should protest and cause him to cease.
If the non-Jew succeeded in carrying out the job at home, and
no one made an attempt to stop him, ex post facto, the work is
permissible for the Jew's use since the non-Jew did it at home,
and under contract as well (since there are Halachic opinions
that permit contractual work even on attached materials, we
may rely on this opinion in the above situation).
21. 12 The laws of a Jew having a non-Jewish partner
6. If a house is being constructed by non-Jewish wage-earner
for a Jew on Shabbat, despite the Jew's explicit request that
he refrain from working on Shabbat, the stringent view is to
be followed. That is, if the non-Jew intended completing the
house as soon as possible for the Jew's benefit, a Jew may
never reside in that house. Otherwise, if his sole intention was
self-interest, e.g., to prove his ability and diligence in getting
the job done in the least possible time, the Jew who hired
him may dwell there afterward. This, since initially the Jew
expressly stipulated with the worker that he would not work
7. On an empty, vacaant lot, owned by a Jew in the Land of Israel,
on which effort was expended in obtaining a permit from the
authorities to build on, the non-Jewish builders may be allowed
to continue constructing on Shabbat. This applies to all aspects
of the prohibition, and even if it is done full public view; we
fear that the building franchise may be rescinded, leaving the
area desolate once again. All Halachic opinions concur that
the mitzvahoi rebuilding and settling in Israel overrules the
Rabbinical ordinance against telling a non-Jew to perform work
for a Jew on Shabbat. And so did our Master order to do in
the Holy City of Jerusalim (Kaf HaHaim, chap. 244, 10).
8. If a Jew owns a factory jointly with a non-Jew, or even
independently, and wishes to find a permissible method that
would allow him to have the non-Jewish plant workers continue
working on Shabbat, he should first consult with a Rav who is
well-versed in the laws of Shabbat, lest he transgress the grave
sin of chillul shabbat.
9. On Erev Shabbat, even immediately before candle lighting,
one may post a letter in the mail-box. This is certainly true
of Israel where there is no mail delivery on the Shabbat, as
well as other lands where there is (this applies even in areas
23. 14 The laws of a Jew having a non-Jewish partner
largely populated by Jews). Since the mailman isn't being paid
directly by the sender, but merely performing his duty to his
employer, he is not considered as looking after the sender's
interests, but his own. In which case, even if the letter will
reach it's destination on Shabbat, it is still permissible to mail
it on Erev Shabbat, since the Jew is not requesting the mailman
to deliver it on the following day (see Shulchan Aruch, 247, 1,
and Mishnah Brurah, ibid).
10. Sending an express, special delivery letter, or a telegram on Erev
Shabbat is forbidden, since it will reach it's destination within
twenty-four hours. Here, the Jew is considered as telling the
non-Jew explicitly to deliver it on Shabbat, which is forbidden.
Others follow a more lenient view which permits sending it
in instances of great need, such as for the performance of
a mitzvah, or if not sending it would cause great monetary
loss (see ibid, ...vyash makilin, and Shmirat Shabbat Kichalta,
31, 20, and the sources mentioned there).
11. It is forbidden to give a letter to a non-Jew on Shabbat in
order that he should deliver it, even if he is going in the same
direction, or if the non-Jew was being paid on a contractual
basis for delivering mail for the Jew. In addition, one may not
drop a letter in the mailbox on Shabbat even if there is an
eruv, or by means of a non-Jew. If not sending off the letter
immediately would entail great financial loss, a lenient opinion
which allows the use of a non-Jew in such an instance (since it
would only be a double shvui), may be followed.
12. One receiving a closed letter on Shabbat may ask a non-Jew to to
open it for him. However, this must be done in such a manner
that he never directly asks that he open it, only hinting at
his request by silently handing him the letter. If the non-Jew
still does not grasp the hint, an other opinion would allow the
25. 16 Chapter One
Jew to say, I can't open this letter on Shabbat, thus making the
hint more obvious; this is the ruling we follow (Ben Ish Chai,
13. If one receives a telegram on Shabbat, and the messenger insists
that he sign the receipt before handing him the telegram, the
Jew should prepare (before Shabbat) a slip of paper bearing
his signature, which he then silently places before the non-Jew.
The non- Jew will then grasp the Jew's intention, take the slip,
and sign the receipt himself.
14. A letter which has been read once may not be read again on
Shabbat, for it has become muktzah. However, a letter which
has arrived on Shabbat (in the method mentioned in para. 12),
may be opened by the non-Jew, since it may contain vital
information. If the letter only contains bills, he should not
read them at all. In addition, whenever he may open and read
a letter on Shabbat, he should read it in silence.
Our custom is not to receive the mail directly from the
mailman's hand, but to tell him to place it on the table. The
reason being, that if the Jew takes the mail directly from his
hands, before the mailman lias made an hanachah, the Jew will
violate the law against carrying on Shabbat. This is actually a
Rabbinical form of carrying, which is prohibited even nowadays
when some claim that there no longer exists a true public
15. A package delivered by parcel post on Shabbat which contains
foodstuffs, may be opened and eaten immediately, even if the
parcel was delivered from outside the t'chum shabbat, or passed
through areas having no eruv. If the package was delivered by
other means, see later (Shmirath Shabbat Khilchata, 28, 52).
27. 18 Chapter Two
The law of one traveling in a caravan on Shabbat,
and other laws concerning Erev Shabbat
1. One going on a long desert voyage which will continue throughout
the week, under conditions which do not allow for halting on
Shabbat, may not set out on the journey any later than Tuesday.
If afterward circumstances should dictate performing an act
of chillul Shabbat, he may do whatever is necessary for self-
However, if one wishes to set out on a trip to Israel, and has an
opportunity to begin traveling on Erev Shabbat, he may do so
since the goal of the trip is for the performance of a mitzvah.
The only condition being, that arrangements should be made to see
that the caravan is halted for the Shabbat. If in mid-voyage
they should decide not to make the Shabbat stopover, he may
continue along with them, since it would be dangerous to for him
to remain stranded alone in the desert. If he was forced to travel
on Shabbat along with his co-travelers, and they then stopped
to rest in a city, he may walk about anywhere he wishes within
the city. Even if they set him down outside the city limits, and he
should wish to walk over and enter it, he may do so; as the motive
behind the trip was a mitzvah, he is given a 2,000 amot radius
within which to move freely about (Shulchan Aruch, 248).
Some are of the opinion that any journey taken for business
purposes or to visit a friend is considered a mitzvah as well. The
only truly non-mitzvah trips are those taken for pure pleasure
or recreation. Therefore, there are those who follow the lenient
opinion which allows embarking on a sea-voyage or other long
journey under the three-day limit mentioned earlier, whenever
they can be regarded as undertaken in the performance a mitzvah.
Those wishing to follow the above opinion have grounds on which
to base their decision on (ibid).
29. 20 Chapter Two
2. On Erev Shabbat it is forbidden to eat beyond the weekday norm,
even for celebrations such as an engagement party, et al. This is
in order that one should have an appetite left for the Shabbat
Eve meal; and the prohibition extends to the entire Friday. As for
everyday eating and drinking, he may certainly do so, but the
more meritorious custom is to avoid having any meal after the
ninth hour. Ramah - it is peremitted to prepare a festive meal on
the occasion of the performance of a mitzvah, such as a brit or
pityon ha'ben, and such is common custom.
3. If one accepted upon himself to perform a fast on Erev Shabbat, he
must continue fasting until nightfall, unless he explicitly stipulated
at the time he accepted the fast that it should not continue beyond
the time of public prayer. As concerns public fasts, no stipulations
can avail, and he must complete the fast at nightfall along with
the tzibur (ibid). If one accepts upon himself a la nit chalom, he
too must complete it at nightfall.
4. If one wishes to accept a tdanii yachid, he is to recite the following
at the end of amidah before beginning to step back: "Master of
the World, I wish to perform a tdanit yachid stipulating that if I
wish to discontinue it, when I shall say, mizmor Vdavid, Hashem
ro'ie 10 achsar, I will be allowed to cease fasting, and it will not be
reckoned as a sin. But may it be thy will, Hashem, our Lord and
Lord of our fathers, that You shall grant me health so that I will
merit fasting tomorrow. Accept me in love and favor, allow me
to merit repenting wholeheartedly, answer my supplication, and
hear my prayer; for You hear the prayers of all mouths: blessed
be He who hears prayers' (Morah B'azbah, 3).
31. 22 The laws of one traveling on Shabbat
1. A Bar-Mitzvah feast, when performed on the actual birthday,
may be celebrated on Erev Shabbat, the same applying to a
wedding banquet scheduled for that day (Ben Ish Hai, lack
I'cha, 21). As for an engagement party, some claim that it is not
considered a mitzvah, and it is prohibited to arrange one on Erev
Shabbat. However, the refreshments served after the signing
of the t'naim may be eaten, since they are not considered as
making up a real feast (Kaf Hachaim 249, 10). But, if there are
Rabbanim present who expound on the Torah, it is considered
a seudat mitzvah. Likewise, any banquet performed not as a
mere social, gathering or party, but as an act of thanksgiving to
Hashem for the performance of a miracle, is also considered as
a seudat mitzvah (Havat Ya'ir, 70).
33. 24 Chapter Three
The laws of preparing the Shabbat meals, and
the prohibition against performing work after
the time of minchah on Friday afternoon
1. One should arise early on Friday morning to begin the Shabbat
preparations. Even if he has many servants to assist him, he
should make an effort to prepare at least one of the Shabbat
chores in it's honor; the Sage Rabbi Hisda, for example, was in
the habit of cutting up the beets, Rabah and Rabbi Yosef chopped
wood, Rabbi Zeirah kindled the fire, and Rabbi Nahman would
clean the house. The point being, that no man has the right to
claim that he cannot suffer the ignominy of performing menial
tasks, for by honoring the Shabbat, he is in fact honoring himself
(the same principle applies to all mitzvot, where it is preferred that
he perform them personally and not by shaliach- Be'ar Haytav).
Ramah - one should sharpen the knife on Erev Shabbat, for that
too is done as a form of honor for Shabbat. He should also
augment the quantities of meat, wine, and refreshments to the
best of his ability.
2. One who performs work on Erev Shabbat from the time of
minchah and upward, will not see any blessing from his efforts.
Some opinions establish that this refers to the time of minchah
gedolah, while others claim that the referance is to minchah
k'tanah (chap. 251), with the Taz and Grah siding with the latter
view. Hagah ־ this applies to doing work routinely at this hour,
not to a temporary task which demands one's immediate attention.
Therefore, one may write letters and the like at that time (ibid).
Likewise, one may write notes, etc., for his own personal use,
or perform repairs to those clothes or utensils necessary for
Shabbat wear or use (but one may not write for profit; and if
he wishes to buy something for Shabbat, and will not be able
35. 26 The laws of preparing the Shabbat meal
to find it after the minchah Service, he may buy it earlier (Be'ar
3. The Be'ar Haytav adds that this law applies to actual manual
labor, not to businesses or commercial enterprises (ibid).
1. Any shopping requiring much preparation should not be left
for Friday, but done earlier. Also, on whatever foods or articles
one obtains for Shabbat use, he should recite, "For the sake
of Shabbat'', since that will bestow the sanctity of Shabbat on
the object. In addition, let one not be concerned of over-taxing
himself, since sweating while engaged in Shabbat preparations
has the effect of having Hashem erase one's sins, much the
same as tears shed in repentance: therefore, one should exert
himself all the more for the sake of honoring the Shabbat (Kaf
Hachaim, 250, 2, 3, 5)
2. One who is in the habit of buying his challot in the store,
should make the effort of baking them at home and enabling
his wife to separate challah from the dough. There are women
who have the custom of giving a coin for tzadakah before
separating challah, lighting Shabbat candles, and going to the
mikvah, since these three mitzvot are solely in the woman's
province of performance.
3. One should prepare no less than two courses for each meal
in honor of the Shabbat. If his usual weekday habit is to eat
two courses, he should then add a third dish to his Shabbat
meals; a fish course, for example, is considered as a significant
supplement. It is also considered meritorious to taste all food
37. 28 Chapter Three
before Shabbat to check if they require any additional seasoning
or other preparation. (Ben Ish Chai, ibid, 7).
4. It is also fitting to perform some form of verbal spiritual
preparation on Friday, such as reading through the entire weekly
parshah twice, and reading the targum once (on completion of
reading the parshah, he then repeats the last verse once more).
This is followed by a reading of the haftorah. If Shabbat should
be one of Rosh Hodesh or Shabbat Shekalim, etc., he reads the
haftorah of the week's parshah, and not that relating to Rosh
Hodesh, etc.. If he was unable to read the parshah on Friday,
he may still read it on Shabbat morning after Morning Services,
or before kiddush (Ben Ish Chai, ibid, 11).
5. Even Halachic opinions which allow engaging in commerce on
Friday afternoon, still require one to close shop early enough to
enable himself to wash, go to the mikvah, and change his clothes
so that he should be able to welcome the Shabbat in purity
and dressed in neat, clean, clothes. There is even a Halachic
ruling that obligates one to spend less time studying Torah on
Friday so as to have enough time left to prepare for Shabbat;
if so, we are then certainly obligated to reduce the amount of
time spent on business we do on that day. "...and those that
trust in Hashem will be encompassed in lovekindness".
6. Despite the fact that one is obligated to trim his hair daily, care
should taken to do so before noon, whether on Erev Shabbat
or any other weekday. Care should also be taken to trim one's
finger and toenails every Friday. If they do not require to be
trimmed that often, then at least every second Erev Shabbat.
The nail parings should not be simply tossed away, but buried,
thrown in the trash can, or flushed down the toilet (Ben Ish
Chai, ibid, 14).
39. 30 The laws of preparing the Shabbat meal
7. It is a mitzvah to wash one's face and feet in warm water every
Erev Shabbat, using liquid soap as our ancestors did. And how
pleasant it is (according to Kabbalistic sources), to immerse in
the mikvah on Erev Shabbat, and on Shabbat morning too
on condition that he avoids transgressing the prohibition of
'squeezing' on Shabbat, or other related prohibitions. Otherwise,
any merit he gains would then be lost through his sins, God
forbid (Ben Ish Chai, ibid, 15, 16. See there, "...on condition
that, etc.", which is borne out by what I have witnessed of
those who unknowingly violate those sins which I shall later
expound on. All wishing to follow this pious practice should
first be well-versed in the laws pertaining to the subject of
bathing on Shabbat, lest he be punished for the immersion
instead of earning merit through it).
8. One should take pains to prepare a set of neat, clean, clothes
in honor of Shabbat. He should not wear black-colored or his
weekday clothes on Shabbat, even if he is within the first year
of mourning. Deserving of meritorious mention is the custom
of our most respected grandfather, Rabbi Elijahu Haim, who
would change his clothes for the Shabbat and Yom-Tov during
the first year of mourning for his parents. The Gaon Rabbi
Yosef Haim too changed his clothes, not even wearing his
usual Shabbat clothes, but instead had himself made a new set
of Sabbath clothes in that year. However, there is no need to
set aside a pair of shoes for Sabbath wear (Ben Ish Hai, ibid
18, "...and shoes", Rav Pe'alim part four, 13). The more pious
custom is to have both a pair of shoes and a hat set aside for
Shabbat wear (Kaf Hahaim, 262, 25).
41. 32 Chapter Four
Work which may and may not be begun on
Erev Shabbat if they are to be completed
automatically during Shabbat.
1. It is permitted to begin malachot on Erev Shabbat just before
sundown, in spite of the fact that they cannot be concluded before
the onset of Shabbat, and will be completed later without human
intervention. Examples are, placing ink and dyes in water and
leaving them to soak throughout Shabbat, and spreading traps and
nets to snare animals, birds, and fishes, which will be entrapped
on Shabbat. In addition, one may sell an article to a non-Jew
immediately before sunset, but only on condition that he leave
the Jew's house before nightfall.
2. One may open the faucet operating the garden sprinkler, allowing
it to continue watering the garden throughout Shabbat, or place
medication on his eyes which will have a gradual therapeutic effect
during Shabbat. He may also place heavy beams on his olives and
grapes lying in the press; the oil and juice which will begin flowing
on Shabbat are permitted for use after Shabbat. The same applies
to wheat grains placed in a water-mill, or unripe grapes crushed
before Shabbat (ibid).
1. One is permitted to give his dirty clothes to a non-Jewish
laundry even shortly before Shabbat, on condition that, first,
the non-Jew is not hired by him but being paid a fixed fee
for his services, or else doing the Jew a favor; and second,
43. 34 Work which may be begun on Erev Shabbat
that the laundry is being done in his own home, not the Jew's.
On the other hand, the Jew may not specifically request that
the laundry be done on Shabbat. If it was common knowledge
that the dirty laundry was the Jew's, and in addition, it will be
washed in a publicly visible area, is then best to be more
stringent, and avoid giving it to be cleaned immediately before
Shabbat (Shulchan Aruch, ibid, 2,3).
2. It is permissible to set an alarm clock before Shabbat which will
ring on Shabbat loudly enough to be heard by others, since all
realize that the clock was set before Shabbat (ibid, Ramah, 4).
Likewise, he may set a time clock before Shabbat to turn the
lights on and off on Shabbat (Electricity and Shabbat, chapter
3. It is forbidden to run a home washing-machine on Erev Shabbat
which will complete the wash during Shabbat (Sha'rei Ezra,
part two, 21). However, if he wishes to leave his coin-operated
washing-machine available for public use on Shabbat, and the
users are non-Jews, he is permitted as long as there is no
Jew standing nearby waiting to use the machine on Shabbat.
This does not hold true for Israel, where the customers are
mainly Jewish, and he will be enabling them to sin. If one is
a Laundromat owner, he may not keep it open for business
on Shabbat (Electricity and Shabbat, chap. 18).
4. If a Jew is the owner of a vending machine selling candy
and the like, and 1) if the machine is not on his property
and it's owner is unknown to the customers 2) he will not be
tending it on Shabbat 3) the owner declares before Shabbat
that anyone making a purchase on Shabbat will be considered
as retroactively having made the purchase before Shabbat and
he does not wish to acquire the money until motzai Shabbat,
then he may leave the machine operating on Shabbat if the
customers are chiefly non-Jews (ibid).
45. 36 Chapter Four
5. One may not operate a Shabbat-clock to turn on his radio,
television, cassette player, or any other electric or electronic
appliance, to either play or record, in Israel or elsewhere. The
same applies to leaving these appliances turned on from Erev
Shabbat for Shabbat listening or watching. Leaving a notice on
the outside of his house door, or writing 'Shabbat5
on the dials
of the radio or television, will not affect the prohibition.
Watching television, even during the week, is not advised
for the God-fearing, since it may lead to serious transgressions
(Electricity and Shabbat, chapters 14 and 15).
If one happened to spend the Shabbat in the company of
Shabbat desecrators, and cannot leave the room (for example,
a soldier in the Israeli Army), and the radio or television is
turned on against his protests, he may not derive any pleasure
from the radio or any other appliance. What he should then
do is, in the instance of a television, shut his eyes or look
elsewhere; concerning a radio or cassette player, if he can stop
his ears with cotton wool, good and well. Otherwise, he should
make an effort to leave the room, demonstrating his aversion
over the desecration of the sanctity of the Shabbat. In areas
(such as in the Israeli Army) where the law prohibits publicaly
violating the Shabbat, he must lodge a complaint with his senior
officers to avoid future Shabbat desecrations (so it seems to
6. Whoever prepares a telegram before Shabbat, which he wishes
to have sent on Shabbat by means of non-Jews to a country
outside of Israel, is forbidden to do so (Electricity and Shabbat,
7. On Shabbat, it is forbidden to make use of a microphone or
loudspeaker, even if turned on before Shabbat. However, the
hard of hearing may use their hearing aids on Shabbat.
47. 38 Work which may be begun on Erev Shabbat
8. One is forbidden to make use of a telephone answering machine
for receiving messages for himself or his business on Shabbat,
for that would be a grave sign of disrespect for the sanctity of
the Shabbat. It is, however, permissible to arrange to have the
(non-Jewish) telephone company link up an answering machine
to his line for the purpose of giving a recorded reply to callers,
since that isn't being done by his own machine.
Needless to say, he may not speak on the phone, even for
matters involving a mitzvah, and even if a non-Jew picks up
the phone for him (ibid, chap. 13). For the use of doctors, or
anyone else who normally receives emergency telephone calls
on Shabbat, there are new inventions which lessen the violation
of Shabbat. All God-fearing doctors should see fit to acquire
such a device, as was done by the Shaari Zadek hospital in
9. Arranging a Shabbat-clock to operate a fan on Shabbat is
permitted. Some Halachic opinions even permit having a non-
Jew turn it on during Shabbat in situations of great heat and
suffering (Electricity and Shabbat, chap. 10).
10. Use of a thermostat is permitted on Shabbat, despite the fact
that opening the entrance door will allow cold or hot air to flow
into the house; this is only considered as a grama, not a psik
raisha, and furthermore, is done unintentionally. However, one
may not not change the thermostat setting on Shabbat in either
As concerns a preset clock operating an automatic milking
machine which was set on Erev Shabbat, a Rabbi should be
consulted to find a method to permit it's use on Shabbat; only
one familiar with the conditions which allow it's use on Shabbat
may issue instructions on how it is to be done.
49. 40 Chapter Four
In this chapter we have discussed the subject of electricity as
concerns devices whose operation was begun on Erev Shabbat.
Later, the subject of electricity on Shabbat itself will be dealt
11. In those areas having no eruv, all are obligated to check their
pockets on Erev Shabbat before sunset, and inspect if they have
any objects in them. Even where there is one, they should still
be checked to see if they contain muktzah articles (Shulchan
Aruch and Kaf Hachaim, 252,7).
12. As sunset approaches, one should gently inquire of his household
members if they have separated masarot and challah, and then
order them to light the Sabbath candles and cease from all
work (Shulchan Aruch 260, 2, and Kaf Hachaim 260, 4).
51. 42 Candle-lighting time
Candle-lighting time on Erev Shabbat, and if one
erred on an overcast day
1. Twilight is the time of bein hasmashot, the eighteen minute interval
before nightfall. This is reckoned by first taking the seventy-two
minute period beginning from when the sun is no longer visible,
until actual nightfall. The first fifty-four minutes are still definitely
day, while the remaining eighteen minutes are bein hashmoshot,
i.e., an interval when doubt exists whether night has fallen yet or
not. Those fifty-four minutes are to be added from the weekday
to Shabbat, either wholly but at least partly, to enable a period
which is definitely day to be added to the Shabbat.
(Al Hashulchan): this follows the opinion of Rabbeinu Tarn,
and those wishing to abide by it on motzai Shabbat are to be
blessed. However, the majority view is that bein hasmoshot begins
immediately at sunset, and therefore, candles are to be lit one
half-hour before sunset, when all work must cease. This has been
the custom of Jews everywhere, as mentioned in the book Eretz
Haim (see Ben Ish Hai on vayarah, and Kaf Hahaim, 261, 10)).
Once the time of bein hasmoshot has arrived, no work, including
immersing new utensils in the mikvah or lighting candles, may
be done. However, covering chamin and making an eruvai
chazarot may still be performed, and one can still request of
a non-Jew to kindle a light for Shabbat use. Likewise, he may be
requested to perform any form of work bearing a mitzvah purpose,
or whatever else the Jew requires urgently (Shulchan Aruch, 261).
Ramah - should he wish to accept Shabbat from the time of plag
mincha, he may feel free to do so (ibid).
2. Whoever is unfamiliar with these prescribed times, should light
candles when the sun is at tree-top level; on an overcast day,
53. 44 Chapter Five
at the time chickens begin roosting. And if he should be out in
the field away from home, when he sees ravens settling on the
ground during the late afternoon hours ibid).
3. After reciting borchu, even while it is still day, one may not perform
any further work whatsoever, including covering the chamin or
making an eruv, since he has already accepted Shabbat. The
reciting of mizmor shir Yyom hashabbat has the same significance
as the recital of borchu.
4. The above applies only if the majority of the community is present
in the synagogue at the time. However, in a city where the greater
part of the community is still at home when mizmor shir is being
recited, there is no reason why one must be compelled to follow
the minority that has accepted Shabbat earlier. The same holds
true in large cities where there are many synagogues, some of
which begin accepting Shabbat before others (Knesset Hagdolah,
ch. 263 in the hagoat of the Beit Yosef).
5. One should make efforts to prepare attractive candles for Shabbat,
preferably making use of two candles, one for zachor, the other
for shamor. Both men and women are obligated to light candles
in honor of Shabbat. Even those so needy that they lack money
for food are required to beg alms to buy candles; for candlelight
is one principle means of creating oneg Shabbat (ch. 263).
6. The Magen Avraham comments on the previous law by stating that
if one is truly destitute, procuring food certainly takes precedence
over purchasing candles. If, however, he does have enough at least
for bread, the acquiring of candles come before the obtaining of
other foodstuffs (ibid).
7. If he should only have sufficient means to buy either candles or
wine for kiddush and havdalah, Shabbat candles take precedence
over the purchasing of wine (Magen Avraham - one candle is
sufficient to fulfill the mitzvah of candle-lighting, as is true too
of Chanukah lights). Similarly, if he had only enough money for
55. 46 Candle-lighting time
acquiring only one candle to be used for either Channukah or
Shabbat, the candle is to be used for Shabbat. Since household
peace and tranquility cannot be attained without light at the
Shabbat table, it takes precedence over the mitzvah of Channukah
8. It is preferred not to light Shabbat candles while many hours
still remain until nightfall, when it would not be at all obvious
that he is lighting them in honor of Shabbat. If he does wish to
light candles and accept Shabbat early, he may certainly do so
as long as it is done after plag mincha, i.e., no earlier than one
and a quarter hours before sunset (Shulchan Aruch, ibid). Ramah
-if the candles had been lit too early, they should be extinguished
and then relit later.
9. Upon lighting the candles, the blessing, Vhadlik ner shel Shabbat is
pronounced, be it man or woman who lights them. On Yom-Tov,
the blessing, Vhadlik ner shel Yom-Tov is made. As for Yom
Kippurim, one opinion takes the view that unless Shabbat is on
the same day too, there is no need to pronounce any blessing
10. Concerning whether the blessing is to be pronounced before or after
lighting the candles, the Machzik Bracha, ch. 263, concurs that
the blessing should be pronounced after lighting them. However,
on Yom-Tov the blessing should be made before lighting candles.
11. If two or more families are dinning in the same room, some
opinions still obligate each family to pronounce a blessing over
it's candles, while other opinions are unsure if there is need for
a blessing other than that of the first family to lights candles.
To avoid pronouncing an unnecessary blessing, only one of the
families should pronounce a blessing (ibid); and so the Birkat
Yosef agrees, despite the view of others who contend that each
family should pronounce a blessing over it's own candles.
12. Accepting Shabbat as regards forbidding the performance of
57. 48 Chapter Five
additional work is not dependent on lighting candles, but on
mizmor shir Vyom hashabbat being recited in the synagogue. Even
the custom mentioned by the Ramah of considering a woman that
lights candles as automatically accepting Shabbat, does not hold
true if she should make a stipulation (even an unspoken one), not
to accept Shabbat then. If she does accept Shabbat, the other
members of the household are still not bound by her acceptance;
such is the opinion of the Shulchan Aruch and Ramah (ch. 263).
13. If the congregation has not yet prayed the Evening Service and an
individual decides to do so while still day, he in fact is accepting
the sanctity of Shabbat. He may then do no further melachot even
if he expressly states that he does not yet wish to accept Shabbat
(ibid). However, if the majority of the congregation has already
accepted Shabbat, the minority has no choice but comply with
their acceptance (ch. 265).
14. If someone walks into town on Friday after the townsfolk have
already accepted Shabbat, despite the fact that it is yet day, he
must drop at once whatever money or other muktzah articles he is
bearing, since it is now Shabbat for all those now in town (ibid).
15. If, on an overcast day, the congregation erroneously thought that
the time had come to light candles and pray the Evening Service
of Shabbat, and afterward the clouds parted and the sun broke
through one more, they need not repeat the Evening Service again.
This, however, is true only if they prayed after the time of plag
mincha; otherwise, they must repeat the Evening Service once
The above applies only when dealing with an entire congregation
that had prayed the Evening Service afterplag mincha, when we do
not wish them to make the effort of repeating the tfilah once again.
As concerns an individual making the same error, he is required
to repeat the Evening Service even if he prayed after plag mincha.
In spite of the ruling of the Shulchan Aruch (ch. 235), that
if one prayed the Evening Service after plag mincha he has
59. 50 Candle-lighting time
fulfilled his obligation, that is only true if he did so intentionally,
not when done erroneously. The same opinion is expressed by
Birkat Yosef in the chapter dealing with Morning Service, and
the same ruling applies to all weekday tfillot (ch. 263, Elyahu
As for performing melachot in the above-mentioned instance of
a premature acceptance of Shabbat, they ruling is that they may
do so (ibid). Some opinions assert that those that have already
lit candles are themselves prohibited from working, while the
other members of the household are permitted. Other opinions
also state that one may not touch or handle the candle that
was lit, even if it was extinguished before the onset of true
16. If one delayed in praying mincha on Friday afternoon until the
congregation had already accepted Shabbat, he should leave the
synagogue and pray mincha elsewhere. However, if he answered
amen and accepted Shabbat along with them, he can no longer
pray a weekday service, and must repeat the Evening amidah twice
17. If one arrived in the synagogue shortly before the congregation
accepted Shabbat, and began praying mincha, despite the fact
that the congregation is accepting Shabbat while he is praying,
he need not halt, since at the time he began the Service it was
not Shabbat yet.
18. A certain Halachic opinion states, that if one accepted Shabbat
before sundown, he may request of his fellow-Jew to perform
a melachah for him. (Ramah - and one can then derive benefit
from that melachah). Likewise, if one delayed in praying the
Evening Service on motzai Shabbat, he may ask his fellow-Jew
who has already prayed and and performed havdalah, to turn on
the light, cook for him, etc., and then derive benefit from that
work (Shulchan Aruch, ibid).
61. 52 Chapter Five
1. One that travels a long-distance journey by jet, and in the
process arrives at his destination after twenty-four hours of
flight at the same day and hour that he began his flight, or
vice-versa if he traveled in the opposite direction and lost an
entire day, now faces the problem of which Shabbat to keep; the
one of his present location, or the Shabbat of where his flight
began. The problem has been dealt with by various Halachic
authorities, who have reached the conclusion that he must keep
the Shabbat of his present locale. An allusion to this solution
is to be found in the verse, "...in all your residences'5
to mean that one is always to follow the Shabbat of the site
that one is at; the same ruling applies to Holidays.
2. Nowadays when we possess accurate watches, we can depend on
them to inform us of sunset time even on overcast days. Should
one have a watch which is unreliable, candles are not to be lit
unless he is certain that the sun has not yet set, and if in doubt,
he should light candles by means of a non-Jew. That uncertain
interval is the true period of bein hashmoshat, in accordance
with the Gaonic opinion which was earlier mentioned as the
accepted time by all for lighting candles. Conversely, to kindle
a fire after the sun has disappeared from view could make
one liable for the death penalty, if darkness had truly fallen.
Obviously, if the time of bein hasmoshat has come and passed
(lasting approximately between thirteen to eighteen minutes),
one may not request of a non-Jew to light candles (see Kaf
HaChaim, 261, 24).
3. One should set the table, make the beds, and tend to all
necessary arrangements to ensue that on return from synagogue,
everything should be ready and prepared in honor of the
Shabbat (Shulchan Aruch 262, 1). As said Rabbai Josi, son of
63. 54 Candle-lighting time
Yehuda, "On Erev Shabbat, two angels escort a person home
from synagogue, one good, the other evil. If upon arriving
home they find the candles lit, the table set, and the bed made,
the good angel then says, 'May it be Thy will that the same
shall be on the following Shabbat', and the angel of evil must
perforce answer amen; if not, the angel of evil then prays, 'May
it be Thy will that the same shall be on the following Shabbat',
and the angel of good must reply amen (Tractate Shabbat, 119).
4. The time before Mincha on Erev Shabbat is a time of danger and
of controversy, where sharp words are likely to be exchanged
between the household members; one where the Evil One makes
efforts to foster dispute. A God-fearing person should bend
his Evil Inclination so that he will not be the cause of strife
by making exaggerated demands - on the contrary, he should
strive to seek peace and harmony.
One should be aware of the fact that every person bringing
about discord and argument between himself and his children,
is always certain that he is in the right. But in truth, anyone with
some sense would realize that if they have done anything wrong,
it isn't actually their fault, but Satan's. He causes quarrel and
strife at that time; and if the members of one's household have
to cope with Satan, who can blame them for not withstanding
him? Therefore, upon witnessing error and shortcoming on the
part of his family, one should not blame them, but reflect
instead on what we have mentioned. This should prevent him
from giving in to his temper, and he will then benefit in this
world and in the World-To-Come.
In the Tractate of Nedarim, 66, the story is related of
a Babylonian Jew who immigrated to Israel, where he later
married a simple-minded woman who frequently misunderstood
her husband's requests. Normal human nature would have
65. 56 Chapter Five
demanded of him to rage and drive her out of his house for
her stupidity, yet, he bore her behavior on silence and never
lost his temper. The story was mentioned by the Sages of the
Talmud to illustrate the extant to which one must be patient
concerning matters in which his household members have erred
A well-known tale is mentioned in the Talmud of a couple
that was given to constantly bicker and quarrel on Friday
evenings, caused by the intervention of Satan. That is, until
the day they took in as a guest Rabbi Meir for three Shabbatot,
who succeeded in restoring peace between husband and wife.
One day, he overheard Satan wailing, "Woe, for Rabbi Meir
has driven me from this house".
In conclusion, one that is intolerant and finds cause to be
incensed at others is supporting Satan; while one who overlooks
the faults of others lends strength to Israel.
5. Even if there is sufficient light, Shabbat candles are to be lit with
a blessing pronounced over them. Aside for the simple reason
for their serving to increase peace and harmony in the house,
a Kabbalistic rationale exists as well to justify the lighting of
Shabbat candles. The preffered site to place them is in the
dinning room, and there is where the woman is to light and
pronounce the blessing over them. Nevertheless, our Sages have
told us to leave a candle burning in the kitchen as well as in
other rooms which are to be utilized, but without need to
pronounce a blessing over them. In our electric age, a light left
on in the rooms is sufficient, with candles saved for the dinning
room (Ben Ish Chai, 58, 1,4, and the supplement).
6. Both husband and wife are enjoined to light Shabbat candles,
save that the wife is more explicitly obligated to do so and
67. 58 Candle-lighting time
pronounce the blessing over them, even if she is blind. She has
first preference over her husband in fulfilling this mitzvah, that
is, should the husband desire to light candles instead, she has
full right to refuse to allow him. The husband, however, may
light a candle in his room without a blessing.
The husband should make whatever preparations are
necessary to arrange the candles for lighting, such as pouring
oil or readying the wicks, as stated in the Ari Zal's Sefer
Hakavanot. And so we have had the custom in our own home
of readying the candles ourselves (following the habit of the
niece of Rabbi Chaim Yosef, our grandfather). It is also best
not to either light too early, or to delay; the preferred custom
is to light the candles one half-hour before sunset, and such is
our custom at home (Ben Ish Chai, 58, 5,6,7,12).
7. It is proper to light the candles after changing into Shabbat
clothes, but if time was short, and the woman fears that if
she should first change clothes, it may then be too late to
light candles, she may light candles in her weekday clothes and
change them afterward. If the woman wishes to pray mincha,
she should do so before lighting candles, as after lighting them
she has already accepted Shabbat: afterward, she prays the
Evening Service (Ben Ish Chai, 58, 9).
8. If two or more families are sharing the same dinning-room,
each one lighting candles at it's own table, one of them should
pronounce the blessing for all, having intent to enable them all
to fulfill the mitzvah through her. The others then light candles
without pronouncing a blessing, relying on the blessing of the
first one. If the blessing was pronounced in an undertone,
and the others did not hear it, they then pronounce a blessing
and omit shem and malchut, merely intending silently to do
so. The reason for this is the existance of a dispute among
69. 60 Chapter Five
Halachic authorities whether or not they are required to make
a new blessing, and when in doubt over blessings, the lenient
view is taken and no blessing is pronounced. The above holds
true in those instances where all the company eats and sleeps
in the same room. However, if they only eat there but sleep
elsewhere, each family should then light it's candles in their
own bedroom and pronounce a blessing there, after ensuring
that the candles will continue burning until bedtime.
If a daughter-in-law is a guest at her mother-in-law's home,
the mother-in-law lights the candles on the table, leaving the
daughter-in-law to light candles in her bedroom. Here too, she
should make certain that the candles will continue remaining
alight until bedtime. If the daughter-in-law should wish to light
the candles at the table, she does not pronounce a blessing over
them, since her mother-in-law has already done so over her
candles (ibid, 11).
9. The candles should be lit at the site that they are meant to be
remain afterward, not at another location and then brought to
the table by a non-Jew; doing so would imply that initially,
they were not lit in honor of Shabbat. They certainly cannot
be lit while the servant is holding them, or outdoors and then
brought into the house. Even if the wife is ill, the candles
must always be lit at the location that they are intended to
remain afterward (ibid, 14).
10. Word has reached me of hospitals where a tray bearing candles
is brought to each woman, who then lights two candle and
pronounces a blessing, the tray and candles immediately being
taken away elsewhere. Some hospitals later extinguish the
candles, others place the tray in the dinning room, and still
others set them down in a special room. The woman should be
cautioned not to pronounce a blessing over the candles in any
71. Candle-lighting time
of the above instances, unless the candles are to be left in the
room she will later sleep in. If they are removed to the dinning
room and will remain there, only one woman pronounces a
blessing over them, intending to include the others in her
blessing. However, if the candles will be placed in an unused
room, or extinguished immediately afterward, no blessing is to
be pronounced at all; candle-lighting is not a mere ceremonial
act, with no importance attached to what is later done to the
The story is related of a religious hospital, when Hag Shavuot
occurred on a Sunday. The candles of Yom-Tov were brought
to the woman a half-hour before sunset while still Shabbat, and
many women then proceeded to light candles and desecrate the
The custom among Jews is for parents and Rabbis to bless
their children on Shabbat Eve, either after Evening services, on
entering the house, or after kiddush and before n'tilat yedaim.
The time is then seen as most propitious to bestow of the spirit
that we are laden with onto our children. This is especially
true when they are too young to generate holiness by their
own actions; but older children are not to be excluded from
being blessed as well. By kissing the hand of a Sage, great
merit is achieved, commiserate with the great holiness abiding
on their hands. Since they use their hand for writing words of
Torah, the spirit of Hashem rests upon.
When kissing the hands of his parents, the son should recite,
'Vshem yichud, I am about to perform the mitzvah of honoring
one's father and mother by kissing their hand, etc' Likewise,
when kissing the hand of a Sage, one should recite the prayer,
'I'shem yichud, I am about to perform the mitzvah of honoring
Torah Sages by kissing their hand, and rectifying the source of
this mitzvah on High, etc' (Kaf HaChaim, 262, 17).
73. 64 Chapter Five
12. One should don his best clothes, and rejoice on the arrival of
Shabbat as one about to welcome a king, or one going forth
to greet a bride and groom (Shulcan Aruch, 262, 3). Whoever
makes efforts to honor Shabbat by either his body, clothes,
or food and drink, is worthy of being blessed (Kaf HaChaim,
13. It is fitting for a woman to pray at the time that she lights
the candles of Shabbat, that Hashem may grant her sons
that will light the world with their Torah, for at the time of
performance of a mitzvah, prayers are more readily accepted.
And in the merit of the light of Shabbat, may she merit sons
great in Torah, as is said, "...for a mitzvah is as a candle,
and Torah is as a light". It is also fitting that she donate a
A segulah for a woman having difficulties raising children,
or one unable to have them, is to read the haftorah of the first
day of Rosh Hashanna after lighting candles, reciting it with
great devotion (Kaf HaChaim, 263, 34).
14. The preferred mitzvah is to light the Shabbat lights by means
of olive oil (Shulcan Aruch, 264, 6). Since the merit of lighting
candles is conducive to having sons who will be Torah scholars,
olive oil, which is likened to Torah, is favored over wax candles
(Kaf HaChaim, ibid, 38). One should not use a wick for the
oil, as our Rabbis have forbidden it's use, as described in
the Shulchan Aruch.
As for using an electric light instead of candles, there is
some controversy among Halachic authorities if it is considered
satisfactory. Therefore, if electricity is used, at least one candle
should be lit as well. If there are no candles available, a blessing
is not to be pronounced over the electric light, since whenever
75. 66 Chapter Six
in doubt over the necessity of a blessing, the lenient view is
taken and one is not pronounced (see sources mentioned in the
book Electricity and Halacha, part 1, chapter 1, and Sh'arei
Ezra, part 1, ch. 18).
The law of someone on the road at sunset
1. If one was bearing a burden on his shoulder at sunset on Friday
afternoon, he should put it under his armpit, and run home
as quickly as possible. If he were to continue casually walking
home, our concern is that he may halt momentarily, thereby
performing an act of 'carrying' (accomplished at the moment he
performs an akirah and hanachah, the lifting and setting down
of a burden). Upon reaching home, he then rids himself of the
load in an irregular manner, e.g., by letting it slip off his shoulder.
Again, care must be taken not to stand even momentarily while
bearing the load, as that would be considered as carrying on the
public domain. Letting it slip off is not reckoned as a proper act
of hanachah, and is not a Torah prohibition (Shulchan Aruch,
2. Other Halahic opinions follow the view that the license to carry
a burden in such a manner on Shabbat does not extend to small
objects he may have in his pockets. Since one does not normally
run while bearing a heavy burden (as opposed to when bearing
small ones), the carrying of the first is an irregular act, as opposed
to that of the second; and an irregular 'carrying' is technically,
not forbidden by the Torah (ibid).
77. 68 Candle-lighting time
3. The Knesset Hagdolah (ibid) remarks in a annotation concerning
the above law, that the Smag, Mordechai, and Sefer Hatrumot
have noted that if one fears that his wallet may be stolen if
he should leave it at the site where he is standing (or within
a four amot radius of his position), he may take it along and
run home, taking care not to stand at any time. Upon arriving
home, he is to deposit it offhandedly before coming to a rest.
Since he began running before sundown, and the akirah didn't
take place on Shabbat, he never violated the prohibition of
carrying. The Shiltai Geborim adds, that in the above instance,
even those who otherwise forbid the carrying of wallets under
any circumstances, would admit that there is no problem now for
there never was a true akirah. As concerns us, since nowadays
the reality of a "public domain" does not exist, one may run
even after nightfall.
1. There are those that wait until late afternoon before closing
shop on Fridays, allowing themselves barely enough time to
arrive home before the onset of Shabbat. Nevertheless, there
are times when plans go awry, and due to a road accident,
traffic is held up, or some other mishap occurs which may
lead to the possibility of chillul Shabbat. Therefore, one should
take pains to leave for home as soon as possible on Erev
Shabbat, depending on the distance he must travel, and leave
himself some leeway for the unexpected. Air travel is definitely
to be avoided, since it is notorious for it's schedule delays (so
it appears to me).
2. All earlier-mentioned allowances to carry money on Shabbat
were citedned only in connection with one's own money, to
79. 70 If one errs in the Shabbat prayers
which he feels more attached to and for who's safety he is
more concerned. However, if one were to find a wallet on
Shabbat, he may not pick it up since it is mukzah, even if he
fears that some other person may take it instead (Shulchan
Aruch, 264, 13). Opinions differ over whether he may request
a non-Jew to take it for him; if the need should be great,
there are those that permit asking him. If he forgot a wallet
in his own courtyard, he may not handle it, since he can sit
there and guard it. And if he did pick it up and bring it
indoors, he is not to be reproved (Kaf HaCaim, chapters 65,
The law of one that errs in the Shabbat Service
1. If one erroneously began praying the weekday amidah on
Shabbat, and reminded himself of his error mid-way through,
he should complete the b'racha that he has already begun, and
then begin reciting the Shabbat amidah from that point onward.
If he reminded himself of his error when he should have been
reading the musaph Service, he immediately ceases reading the
weekday service, and begins the the Shabbat one (Shulchan
Aruch, 268, 2).
81. 72 Chapter Seven
2. If one read a weekday amidah to it's conclusion without making
any mention of Shabbat within it, his amidah is invalid. If he
did make mention of Shabbat, despite the fact that it still is not
a true Shabbat amidah, he has fulfilled his obligation, (ibid,
3. If he erred and read the entire weekday amidah without making
any mention of Shabbat whatsoever, and he has begun to step
back, he must recite the Shabbat amidah from it's beginning,
as mentioned. Otherwise, if he completed the entire weekday
amidah but did not begin stepping back, he need not read the
amidah again from the beginning (ibid, 5).
4. If one completed the amidah, and is doubt over whether he
read a weekday or a Shabbat one, he need not repeat the
amidah again; it can be assumed that due to the importance of
the day, he could not have forgotten which amidah he was to
read (Ben Ish Chai, toldot, 12).
5. One that erred while reading the amidah of Shabbat, and read
the wrong Shabbat amidah, is not required to recite the correct
amidah afterward. However, there is an opinion that requires
him to repeat the amidah if he switched the musaph amidah for
any other one, or vice-versa (ibid, par. 6). Others are of the
opinion that since there are actually conflicting views over
whether he need repeat the amidah of musaph or not, he should
listen carefully to the cantor's repetition, and intend to fulfill
his obligation through the other's reading (Kaf HaHaim, 28,
6. If he read the musaph amidah along with the congregation, and is
uncertain if he had erred and read the morning amidah instead,
or missed reading the amidah entirely, he need not repeat
musaph once again, even as a voluntary prayer. The reason
83. 74 The laws of Kiddush
being, that in the former instance, it can be assumed that
since he began the amidah along with the congregation, he
did not err, and secondly (this applies to the latter instance
as well), there are no voluntary tephilot on Shabbat, nor can
there ever be a voluntary tephilot musaph either (ibid, 31,32).
The laws of kiddush^ which wine is to be used, that
kiddush should take place at the site of the meal,
and laws concerning the challah.
1. Women are obligated to hear kiddush in spite of the mitzvah being
one time-generated (from which they are usually exempt). The
reason is, that being that the shamor aspect of Shabbat is linked
to the zachor aspect, and since women are obligated to fulfill the
י component, they are then obligated to abide by the
other, zachor, element as well. They therefore may also pronounce
the kiddush blessing, and intend to help men fulfill their obligation
(Shulchan Aruch, 271).
2. If two sat down at the table to drink wine, and one of them then
said, "Let us now make kiddush", they may not drink further
until kiddush is made. If they should wish to drink before making
kiddush, despite the fact that they are not permitted to do so,
they must first repeat the blessing over wine once more before
continuing to drink. (The same applies if they were drinking beer,
85. 76 Chapter Eight
or if they weren't drinking at all but merely said, "Let us make
kiddush"; they may not eat or drink before doing so; - so it
seems to appear to me from the words of Rabbi Yosef Caro
3. If Shabbat commenced after he completed his meal, but before
he said birkat ha'mazon (if Purim was on a Friday, for example),
he then says birkat ha'mazon over a cup of wine, making mention
of Shabbat in the blessing despite the fact that he has not made
kiddush yet. Afterward, he pronounces kiddush over a second cup
of wine. Despite the ruling mentioned earlier in chap. 188, that
if as one was still eating seuda shlishit as Shabbat came to
a close, and the following day was Rosh Hodash, Hanukah,
or Purim, he should make mention of Shabbat alone in the birkat
ha'mazon (since the meal's beginning determines the nature of the
birkat ha'mazon), here, however, the law is different. The situation
is comparable to one that did not pray the mincha service before
Shabbat, which then requires him to pray the Shabbat service
twice, as Rabbi Yosef Karo wrote in the Beth Yosef, quoting the
Rosh, see there (chap . 271).
4. If one didn't make kiddush at night, unintentionally or otherwise,
he can recompense the following day by saying it then. (Ramah
־ he then pronounces the entire kiddush of the evening, save for
5. Kiddush is pronounced over a cup of wine which has not been
tasted from previously; and all requirements of wine drunk at
birkat ha'mazon must be met, with the soie difference being that
kiddush is to be recited while standing (ibid).
6. If he has only one cup of wine for the entire Shabbat, he
pronounces kiddush over it at night without tasting the wine so
as not to 'mar' it. He then pours off some wine into a second
cup and tastes from it, saving the remaining wine of the first cup
for the kiddush of the day. If all he had in the first cup was an
87. 78 The laws of Kiddush
exact reve'it of wine, he can make up for the necessary amount
of wine he will need for the day's kiddush by adding water to
the wine. However, if he does not have another cup of wine
for havdalah, it is preferred that he pronounce the kiddush of the
night and day over the challot, and save the wine for havdalah.
Should he have two cups of wine, one is to be used for the evening
kiddush, and the other for havdalah.(ibid).
7. Adds the author ־ as I was copying this paragraph, I had cause to
wonder over the ruling of, quote, 'if he had only a scant reve'it of
wine, he saves the remainder after kiddush and adds water to
it for the day'. Whereas, in the following paragraph he states
that one must drink at least a mouthful of wine for kiddush,
which is the greater part of a revi'it. If so, after consuming the
best part of the revi'it, how can he add water to the remainder
and make still make kiddush over it? On the other hand, if he
simply sipped some wine at the night's kiddush, how does he
fulfill his obligation on such a small amount?
Then, I found a solution in the words of HaRav Benbenishti,
author of the Knesset Hagdolah (she'eri orach haim), who was
faced with the same problem. His question was based on the words
of the Talmud in the tractate of Pesachim: "...Rav Huna said,
'One that makes kiddush and then drinks a mouthful, fulfills his
obligation; otherwise, not...'" The reply of the Knesset Hagadolah
is, that even if the greater part of a reve'it was drunk and
water added to compensate for the missing amount, it is fit for
the morrow's kiddush. This applies to our present-day wines as
well, despite the fact that they are not as strong as the wines of
His second reply was, "...the law which requires one to drink at
least a mouthful of wine for kiddush, applies only to one who has
sufficient wine for the day. Otherwise, he should simply taste
it, and let it suffice; better that, than to make the kiddush of
the day over bread. So I infer from the words of the Jerusalem
89. Chapter Eight
Talmud, where it is stated, 'Rav Mona tasted, and restored it...,'
implying that mere tasting was adequate'1
I, however, in all due respect, did not grasp his response, in
particular his words, "...despite the fact that our wines are not
as strong as the wines of old, they are still fit for kiddush after
water being added to them." Rabbi Yosef Karo states (chap. 204),
that mixing wine with water and still calling it wine depends on
local custom. However, we have never yet heard of our wines
being diluted with water and still retaining the status of wine; on
the contrary, most of our wines are drunk without being diluted
at all. If that being the case, how can we pronounce a blessing of
wine over such a mixture?
His second reply is even more difficult, for he himself quotes
the tractate of Pesachim, which states that unless one drinks a full
mouthful, he does not fulfill his obligation of kiddush. Rav Huna
never makes mention of the fact that under certain circumstances,
tasting is sufficient. Furthermore, why add, "...better that, than
to make the kiddush of the day over bread", the implication
being that the daytime kiddush is to be preferred over the night
one; Rabbi Yosef Karo himself refutes that assumption by his
statement, "Whoever has but two cups of wine, should make
the kiddush of the night, and save the second cup for havdalah".
In other words, in his opinion the daytime kiddush takes a lower
priority than havdalah.
In addition, the quote from the Jerusalem Talmud concerning
Rav Mona is also problematical. It would seem that the Jerusalem
Talmud and the Babylonian are in disagreement, since Rav Huna's
statement clashes with that of Rav Mona. If so, are we to assume
that the Shulchan Aruch opted for the ruling of the Jerusalem
Talmud over that of the Babylonian?
What to me seems to be the solution is to be found by asking
two other text questions. The first, on the middle statement of
Rabbi Yosef Karo in chapter 6 concerning one that has only a bare
91. The laws of Kiddush
revi'it of wine, plus another cup of wine for havdala. The question
that rises is, why bother at all saving wine from the evening's
kiddush for the day kiddush? For in the last part of the paragraph
dealing with one having only two cups of wine, Rabbi Yosef Karo
states that one cup should be saved for the evening, and the
second for havdala ־ and no mention is made of the day kidddush.
Last of all, the middle and third sections of the chapter both
deal with the same situation, i.e., what to do when having only
two cups of wine. Isn't one of these two rulings superfluous?
Nevertheless, after careful perusal of the words of Rabbi Yosef
Karo, one can see that his words fit together in logical order. To
begin, the entire chapter is first to be divided into three distinct
sections, with the first dealing with a situation of one having a cup
containing more than a revi'it of undiluted wine. After minimal
dilution, it will be transformed into two revi'ot of diluted wine,
but still suitable for kiddush. At night, the first revi'et will be
used for the evening kiddush, and the other saved for the day.
It can be assumed that there is also a third cup left for over
for havdalah, as explicitly stated afterward.
The middle section deals with an instance of one having a cup
containing the scant minimum of a revi'et (approx. 86 grams) of
wine. At night, he adds to this a quantity of 6 grams of water,
and drinks an amount equivelant to a 'mouthful' (approx. 24
grams). leaving himself a total of 68 grams of wine, to which he
adds 18 grams of water the following day. At this stage, the wine
is still fit for kiddush.
Lastly, the third section deals with with one having exactly two
revi'ot of wine which have already been diluted to their permissible
limit, with no possibility of adding more water to them. Then, he
should pronounce the evening kiddush over the first cup, and make
the morning kiddush over the challot. The second cup is saved for
havdalah, since the use of wine for it is preferred over that of
using it for the morning kiddush.
93. Chapter Eight
The ruling of the Shulchan Aruch in the following chapter
that one must drink a mouthful of the revi'et of wine, is therefore
an obligatory one, since he favors the view of Rav Huna over
that of Rav Mona (so notes the Be'ar Hagolah, Pesachim, 106)
. When Rav Benbenishti then draws a proof from the Jerusalem
Talmud, implying that a mere sip of the wine is sufficient, what
he is actually intending to prove is that sipping the wine does
not 'mar' it, i.e., make it unsuitable for further use, since it can
be restored and reused for kiddush by adding some wine or water
to it. As Rabbi Yosef Karo states in chapterph 182, "...a 'marred'
cup can be restored by adding some wine or water", see there. That
is precisely the intention of the passage quoted from the Jerusalem
Talmud; the two Talmuds are therefore not in disagreement, but
are discussing two entirely different aspects of the kiddush.
95. 86 Chapter Eight
8. If the one that made kiddush did not taste of the wine, allowing
someone else to drink a mouthful of it, he has fulfilled his
obligation. The opinion of the Geonim is that the one that made
the kiddush must take at least take a sip of it, and their ruling
is to be followed. The drinking by both each of half a mouthful,
however, does not combine to create a whole mouthful. In addition,
all participants in the kiddush should sip some of the wine. This
ruling of the obligation of the one that made kiddush to sip of the
wine, applies only to the wine of kiddush, not to other occasions
requiring the drinking of wine, when another may drink it instead
9. If one made kiddush, and before tasting of the wine, made an
interruption by speaking, he must repeat the blessing of borai pri
hagafan, but not the entire kiddush. The same applies if the wine
spilled before he drank of it, when a second cup of wine is to be
brought to replace it; again, only the blessing over drinking wine
is to be repeated (ibid).
10. The Be'ar Haytav states, quoting the Ari Zal (chap. 115), that
if one took a cup of water or beer which he erroneously thought
was filled with wine, and made kiddush and pronounced a blessing
of borai pri hagefan over it before discovering his mistake, he
must repeat both the blessing and the entire kiddush over a cup
of wine - this ruling has the support of the Taz (ibid).
11. Kiddush is not to be made over wine possessing a foul odor, even
though it still has a wine taste and smell. Also, wine which was
left uncapped and exposed for any duration is not to be used,
to which the Ramah adds that if it was left exposed for only a short
time, there is no reason to disqualify it (chap. 272).
12. If, on Erev Shabbat, one happened to be in a locale where wine
was available, but knew that on Shabbat Eve he would be an area
having none, he may make kiddush on Friday using the wine in
97. 88 The laws of Kiddush
his first location, and afterward cease from all work (Shalah,
quoting the Magen Avraham, Be'ar Haytav (ibid).
13. Wine straight from the wine-press may be used for kiddush;
likewise, one may hand-squeeze grapes for the same purpose,
providing of course that he does so before Shabbat (ibid).
14. Wine skimmed off the top of the barrel may be used for kiddush even
if it is slightly moldy, the same applying to wine which has lost it's
smell but retaines it's taste. However, if the wine has lost it's taste
and retained only it's smell, it may not be used. At any rate, the
preferred manner to perform the mitzvah of kiddush is to select
a fine wine (ibid).
15. Wine sediment or grape seeds which were soaked in water until
they have become fit to be drunk and the blessing of borai pri
hagafan pronounced over them, are also suitable for kiddush (ibid).
16. Raisin wine may be used for kiddush, provided that the raisins
were moist before they were soaked in water (ibid).
17. In a locale where wine is unavailable, kiddush may not be made
over beer or other beverages, and certainly not on water. The
Rosh states that in such a situation, the advised procedure is
to pronounce the evening kiddush over the challot, and the
the morning one over the beer, enabling him to pronounce the
sh'hakol blessing over it before the ha'motzi on the bread. This
will preserve some form of distinction for the morning kiddush,
which otherwise has no nusach kiddush of it's own to make it
unique, as opposed to the evening kiddush; and his words make
eminent sense (ibid).
18. By pronouncing the blessing over wine at kiddush, one is thereafter
exempt from making any further blessings on wine or other
beverages drunk during the meal, neither does he pronounce a
brachah achronah on the wine or beverages since the birkat
99. 90 The laws of Kiddush
ha'mazon takes it's place (whether birkat ha'mazon is being made
using a cup of wine or not).
Says the author, that is only if he began eating immediately
after making kiddush, such as by partaking of cakes or other light
refreshment, as is our custom. The brachah achronah on wine
will also exempt him from making one over the other beverages.
However, if one pronounced a brachah achronah before sitting
down to eat the main meal, he is obligated to pronounce a blessing
over wine drunk during the meal since the blessing made for
kiddush no longer can exempt him. The only time the blessing
pronounced over kiddush exempts him from need of pronouncing
further blessings over wine or other beverages, is if he began
eating immediately afterwards. As for weekday meals where bread
is eaten, here too one need not pronounce a blessing over any
beverages drunk during the meal, save for wine (Shulchan Aruch,
19. Kiddush is to be made only on the site where he will later have his
meal. Within the same house, even one of large proportions, he
may make kiddush in one corner of the house and have the meal
in an other without need to repeat kiddush once more (chap.
20. If one made kiddush in one location, intending to have his meal
there, and then changed his mind and decided to have it elsewhere,
he must repeat the kiddush in the new location; and if he never
ate after the first kiddush, he never fulfilled his kiddush obligation
altogether. (Ramah - one must always eat something immediately
after making kiddush (chap. 273)).
21. A person may make kiddush and help others fulfill their obligation,
despite the fact that he himself is eating elsewhere, for this is the
location of their meal. Although one cannot help others fulfill their
blessing obligation over food or drink unless he too is participating
in the eating and drinking, here, since the wine blessing is an
101. 92 The laws of Kiddush
integral part of the kiddush, he can relate to it as he does to
the kiddush itself, and need not drink the wine afterward. This,
however, may only be done when the others do not know how to
pronounce kiddush by themselves. In addition, unless he actually
includes himself in the kiddush, he may not partake of any food,
or even eat along with those he made kiddush for, since he may
not eat until he makes kiddush at the site of his own meal
22. The Gaonim state that in order to fulfill one's obligation of
having kiddush at the site of his meal, it suffices to eat or drink
even a small quantity of food or beverage, as long as he is
now required to pronounce a brachah achronah afterward. Later,
he may have his main meal elsewhere without need of repeating
the kiddush. However, this is true only if he ate bread (or cakes
of any of the five grains) or drank wine, and not merely fruits
(Shulchan Aruch and Magen Avraham, ibid).
23. If one made kiddush at home and his neighbor overheard him, if
1) the neighbor's table was set for eating, 2) the one that made
kiddush intended to help the other fulfill his obligation, and 3) the
neighbor also intended to fulfill his own obligation through the
other's kiddush, only then can he too fulfill his kiddush obligation
through the other (ibid).
24. Some opinions claim that kiddush may only be made in the
vicinity of the Shabbat candles, while others state that kiddush is
not linked in any way to the candles. If he should prefer to
eat outdoors and enjoy the cool air, he may make kiddush and
eat there as well without having to see the candles at all, since
they are intended to cause pleasure, not distress; and the second
opinion is the more acceptable one (ibid).
103. 94 Chapter Eight
1. Once the time arrives to make kiddush, i.e., ben hasmoshot, and
even if he hasn't prayed the Evening Service yet, he may not eat,
drink, or even sip water (Ben Ish Chai, beraishit, 17). However,
if he has been fasting until now, he may rinse his mouth with
water before kiddush. Nowadays, the time of sunset noted on
the calendar is also the time that he must make kiddush before
eating or drinking.
2. Despite the fact that one may not eat before making kiddush, if
he did eat, he must still make kiddush at the first opportunity
(Shulchan Aruch, 271, 7). Similarly, if he forgot to make
kiddush and began eating his meal, or even if he had already
completed it, he must halt and make kiddush whenever he
reminds himself of his oversight (Ben Ish Chai, ibid, 19).
3. The household members who are giving ear to the reading of
kiddush by the head of the family, should pay close attention
to the words of the entire blessing from start to finish. If
one is hard of hearing, or if the reader stutters and the
hearers have difficulty following him (and they cannot make
kiddush themselves afterward), they should focus their attention
on the wine cup in the hand of the reader, and repeat the
kiddush silently after him. Since they are in no position to
pronounce the kiddush themselves, epso facto, they can still
fulfill their obligation in this fashion (ibid, 15).
4. One may not use tea, coffee, or other juices and soft drinks for
making kiddush or havdalah since they are not considered as
chamar medina (chamar medina is whatever beverage, aside from
water, is drunk by the general populace as a substitute for wine
when it is unavailable). Whoever does use them for kiddush or
105. 96 The laws of Kiddush
havdalah is pronouncing the name of God in vain (Yabia Omer,
Part 3, 19). Therefore, nowadays, with wine being so plentiful
in Israel, beer may not be used there either. In other countries
where wine is less common and beer is normally drunk by the
local populace, it is considered as chamr medina and may be
used for kiddush (Sha'arei Ezra, part one, 12).
5. Daytime kiddush is linked to the prayer service, and as
long as one hasn't prayed the Morning Service, he has no
obligation to make kiddush either. This applies to men only; the
kiddush obligation of women, who have a Torah obligation to
pray, but none to have a formal prayer service or a fixed time for
praying, begins from sunrise. Therefore, their kiddush obligation
is not dependent on prayer, and if they do not wish to wait
for their husband's return from Synagogue, they must make
kiddush themselves first before taking even a sip of water (Ben
Ish Chai, ibid, 18).
6. The basic obligation of the one that makes kiddush is to drink
at least a mouthful of wine, and most preferably, a revi'it.
Epso facto, if the reciter did not drink the wine and someone
else drank a mouthful of it instead, all have fulfilled their
obligation ־ and it is also preferred that all participants sip of
Nowadays, we don't avoid drinking from the wine cup used
by our friend to make kiddush, and have no fear of catching a
disease (ibid, 23). Nevertheless, should there be any suspicion
of illness, the one making the kiddush should first pour off
some of the wine into another cup, and let the others drink
from it. He can also add wine to the second cup so that there
will be enough wine for all, as long as the second cup contains
some of the wine over which kiddush was made.
107. 98 Chapter Eight
7. If no wine is at hand, one may make kiddush over the challah.
At night the procedure to be followed is to first wash hands,
and recite vayehulu over the still-covered challah. Next, he
uncovers the challah and pronounces hamotzi without slicing
them, and finally, recites the blessing of kiddush while his two
hands are resting on them. At day, since there is no distinction
within the blessing of hamotzi which will single it out from
any other weekday blessing, he should make efforts not to
have the kiddush pronounced over the challot. If he has any
chamar medinah available such as beer, he should use that
for kiddush; he first washes his hands, pronounces a blessing
of she'hakol, and drinks a mouthful, followed by a blessing of
hamotzi on the challah. If has no chamar medinah either, or
finds it too strong for his taste, he may recite the appropriate
verses or piutim normally recited at kiddush, and then pronounce
a blessing of hamotzi on the challot.
8. After kiddush, one should immediately wash his hands, and
pronounce the blessing of hamotzi on two whole loaves, which
are meant to symbolize the Manna. This applies to each one of
the three Shabbat meals. Women too, if they are eating alone,
must make use of two whole loaves. The Kabbalistic procedure
is to arrange twelve loaves of bread on the tablecloth, over
which a second tablecloth is spread. When the housewife sets
the table, she recites the verse,"vaydabar alay, za hashulchan
asher lifnai Hashem", for by this recital, holiness will rest on
the table (Ben Ish Chai, vayera, 15, 17).
9. The weight of a k'ziat is 29 grams, and the weight of a k'baitzah is
58 grams. After eating a k'ziat of the bread, one should eat
some more of it to complete the equivalent of a k'baitzah. One
should also make an effort, if he is able, to eat at least slightly
more than a k'ziat of bread at each of the Shabbat meals. Only
one that is ill and incapable of eating much bread may be fulfill
his obligation by eating no more than a k'ziat (Ben Ish Chai,
ibid, 16. My grandmother received from her uncle, the Gaon
Rav Yosef Chaim zt"l, the Ben Ish Chai's special, precise,
weights for measuring the weights of k'ziat and k'baitzah, and
did not follow the view of the Noda Beyehuda who increased
10. There is a mitzvah to eat fish at the three meals of Shabbat.
If one could not, for some reason, eat the evening meal, he
should compensate by eating three meals during the day (ibid,
11. An underage minor cannot help anyone, even a woman, fulfill
their obligation of making kiddush (Kaf HaChaim, 9).
12. One can fulfill the obligation of two Shabbot loaves even if
one of them is frozen (Sha'arei Ezra, Orach Chaim, part two,
111. 102 Chapter Nine
Which activities are forbidden to be performed by
candle-light, and the law of a candle lit by a non-Jew
1. Clothes may not be deloused by candle-light. Likewise, one may
not do similar activities which require close scrutiny, such as
reading by aid of their light; our fear is that he may inadvertently
move the lamp or bend the wick to provide better lighting. In
which case, the Rabbis did not differentiate between a wick which
one can easily reach and bend, or one inaccessible to the user. For
that reason, an oil lamp provided with a glass chimney, or a wax
candle, are also forbidden for use in any of the forementioned
activities. This, however, is only when one person is reading before
it's light, or even two, but who are each reading different material.
If they are reading together from the same book, and one can
stop the other from thoughtlessly reaching out and attempting
to improve the lighting, they are permitted to read by it's light
(Shulchan Aruch, chap. 275).
2. The above prohibition does not apply if the reader requests of
another, such as his wife (who may not necessarily be reading by
the lamplight too), to watch that he makes no effort to tamper
with the light.
3. Before a large flame, such as a bonfire, any number of readers
surrounding it will not remove the prohibition against reading by
candle-light. Since they stand at a certain distance from each
other, and in addition, pieces of wood are readily available to
be inadvertanly tossed into the blaze, they will not immediately
notice someone poking the burning cinders or throwing wood chips
into the fire (ibid).
4. If a non-Jew lit a candle or flame for a Jew's use, all are forbidden
to derive any benefit from it, including those for whom the non-
113. 104 Activities forbidden to be done by candle-light
Jew never intended to gratify. However, if the non-Jew's action
was motivated by selfish reasons, or if he did it to aid an ill person
(even one not in danger), all may enjoy its light. Other opinions,
however, differentiate between a simple candle and a flame, where
if the non-Jew added fuel to increase the blaze for the Jew, he
may enjoy its light (ibid, chap. 276).
5. If Jews and non-Jews were dining at the same table, and a non-
Jew lit a candle, if most of the diners are non-Jews, the Jews
may derive benefit from the candle; if not, or if they were equal
in number, they may not. However, if it was unmistakably lit by
the non-Jew for his own use, then even if most of the company
are Jews, they may derive benefit from the light (ibid). It is also
permissible to instruct a non-Jew at bein hashmoshet to kindle
a light for Shabbat use, or any other work necessary in the
performance of a mitzvah (chap. 261).
6. If a candle was alit in the Jew's home, and a non-Jew then lit a
second candle alongside it, the Jew may continue deriving benefit
from the candlelight as long as the first candle is still burning.
After it is extinguished, however, the Jew may not make use of
the second light. Similarly, if the non-Jew added oil to a burning
lamp, the Jew may continue using its light until the quantity of
oil that he originally placed in it is gone; thereafter, he may
not (chap. 276).
7. In cold lands, a non-Jew may kindle a fire for the benefit of small
children, and afterward adults too may warm themselves by it's
heat. If the cold is great enough to endanger the health of adults
as well, the non-Jew may be instructed to kindle a fire specifically
for them. However, this liberty is not to be abused when the cold
does not justify it (ibid).
115. 106 Chapter Nine
1. It is permissible to read under an electric light, since the fear
that he may adjust the wick obviously does not exist. Nor
were the Rabbis fearful that he may turn the light on or off,
as the real suspicion was that may absent-mindly follow his
usual weekday habit of adjusting the wick to improve it's light
while reading, which can't be done with an electric lamp. We
ourselves are witness to the fact that owing to the conciousness
of Shabbat, rare are the chances of one forgetting and turning
the light on or off.
However, in certain areas at home where one habitually turns
the light on and off unthinkingly, such as in the bathroom, and
one fears that he or a member of his household may unwittingly
turn it on, it is advisable to place (on Erev Shabbat), some form
of reminder on the light switch.
2. The custom in synagogues of having a non-Jew turn the lights
on or off before and after tfilot on Shabbat, since it is done
for a mitzvah purpose, i.e., since it enables the congregation to
pray from the siddurim, and mitzvot are not intended to be a
source of pleasure, is permitted. Furthermore, since the non-Jew
is receiving a fixed wage for his efforts, and in addition, at least
one other source of light will always remain alit in the synagogue
(the ner tamid), so that in actuality he is only increasing light,
not creating it, their is no reason to forbid use of the light
(Rav Pa'alim, part two, Kaf HaChaim, 8).
3. Utensils which are similar in appearanc and require intensive
examination to tell them apart, or even a watch with small
numerals, may not be inspected under the light of the candle,
unless one is merely checking utensils for cleanliness, which is
permitted for hygienic and safety reasons (Ben Ish Chai, 58,
117. 108 Moving the candle on Shabbat
Chapter T e n
Moving a candle on Shabbat
1. A candle may be extinguished for a person dangerously ill
(Shulchan Aruch, 278). Adds the author, it seems to me that
this may only be done if there is no other room available to place
the candle in, when it is preferred to take the candle and set
it down there instead. Ramah - this is also true if the candle does
not greatly disturb the ill person; then, it is to be removed from
the room, not put out.
2. A candle which was lit for Shabbat may not be handled even after
it burns out, with the same applying to any oil left after the lamp
extinguishes itself; they both may not be used at all for remainder
of the day (chap. 279).
3. The above-mentioned candle may not be moved for any reason,
even if only for use of the site it is resting on, or for use of
the candle or oil itself. If, however, he stipulated before Shabbat
that he would wish to move it after the candle went out, he may
do so (ibid).
4. A candle which was lit on Shabbat for those for whom it may
be lit, such as an ill person or a woman after childbirth (see
chap. 329 and 330), or if it was lit accidently, may be moved
after they are extinguished regardless of whether the ill person
recovered, or the woman regained her strength afterward. The
reason is, that since the candle did not become muktzah at the
time of sunset on Erev Shabbat, it cannot become muktzah on
Shabbat. The Magen Avraham adds, that a candle which was
lit in violation of Shabbat and went out may be moved as well
119. 110 Chapter Eleven
5. A lamp which wasn't lit, even one of clay which has become filthy
with use, may be handled since muktzah machmat meus may
be moved on Shabbat (ibid). However, it may only be moved
if the site upon which it is standing is desired for use, or if
the lamp itself is needed to fill a need (Be'ar Halacha, ibid),
but not in order to prevent it's theft (chap. 308).
6. A candlestick, large or small, if formed by pieces which are joined
together, may not be handled on Shabbat out of fear that it may
fall and become dismantled; since if he then puts it together
again he violates the prohibition of forming a utensil on Shabbat.
This applies too to a candlestick having grooves, which give it the
appearance of being dismantable as well (Shulchan Aruch, chap.
Several laws concerning the haftorah and it's
blessings, and the obligation to read the weekly
Torah portion twice, once with the targum; the
laws of the Shabbat musaph Service
1. If the Torah reader erred, and completed the reading by saying
kaddish after the sixth aliyah, he need not read further. All he must
now do is repeat the sixth parshah for the maftir's aliya, for the
law is that the allya of the maftir can be counted as the seventh
aliyot of the Shabbat Torah readings (Shulchan Aruch, 282).
2. If Rosh Chodash should occur on a Shabbat, the maftir does not
read the Rosh Chodash Torah portion, and such is our custom
121. 112 Laws concerning the Haftorah
3. By paying close attention and having intent to all the blessings
pronounced over the Torah and haftorah, one can add them to
the 100 blessings that one must utter daily (ibid). A minor can
be the maftir, and when two parashot are linked together, the
haftorah of the second parshah is the one to be read for the
4. Despite the fact that everyone hears the Torah publicly read on
Shabbat, he is obligated to read to himself the parshah of that
week, twice Scripture and once targum. This applies even to those
verses where the Scripture and the targum are identical, i.e., he
is actually reading the same words three times (ibid).
5. Reading Rashi's commentary is equivalent to reading the targum on
the parshah, and the truly God-fearing read both Rashi and
targum. One may begin reading the new weekly Torah portion
from the time of mincha on Shabbat and onward, and the preferred
mitzvah is to complete the reading before sitting down to eat
on Shabbat morning (ibid). If he did not succeed in completing
the reading before beginning the Shabbat morning meal, he should
try to do so before mincha of Shabbat, and if not then, no later
than Wednesday of the following week. Others claim that he
has until Shemini Azerath to complete whatever he has missed
throughout the year, as that is when the yearly cycle of the public
Torah readings is concluded (ibid).
6. One may read the Scripture twice and the targum as the Torah
is being publicly read; and there is no need to read the Torah
portion read publicaly on Yom-Tov (ibid).
7. The time for praying the musaph Service is immediately after
completing the Morning Service, up until the end of the seventh
hour of the day. It is considered sinful to delay any later, though
one who prays the musaph Service then has still fulfilled his
obligation, since ex post facto, it's time is all day. If he forgot and
did not pray musaph at all during the day, he cannot compensate
by repeating the Evening Service twice.
123. 114 Chapter Eleven
8. One may taste food before the musaph Service, e.g., fruits or
even cake to satisfy his hunger, but a full meal is forbidden (ibid).
The Birkat Yosef states that those desiring to taste food before
musaph should first make kiddush before having a light snack
of fruit or cake. After musaph, they should make kiddush once
again before the main meal to satisfy all Halachic authorities
(Responsa Sha'arei Yeoshua).
(Adds the author), it seems to me that one ought not to drink
a full revi'it of wine when making kiddush before musaph, since
then he will be unable to pray the Service, as stated in chap. 92. If
he did drink a revi'it of wine, he must then wait until the effects
of the wine dissipate before commencing the Service (see there).
1. In the synagogue, a sefer torah is taken out, and at least
seven people receive aliyot. If additional aliyot are allotted, the
Reader may repeat what has already been read, and each olah
1'torah pronounces a blessing (Shulchan Aruch, chap. 61, 2, see
Beit Dino Shel Shlomo, Orach Chaim).
2. When the ark is opened, the custom is to say, br'ich shmei,
etc., and when the sefer torah is removed from the ark, it is
opened wide and displayed before the congregation. All should
then bow to the sefer, even women and children, and say,
"This is the Torah that Moshe presented before, etc....God is
true, Moshe is true, and His Torah is true". It is fitting that
one find a word on the open scroll whose first letter is similar
to the first letter of his name.
It is also recommended that one look at the letters of the
sefer torah, for by looking closely at them and being actually
125. 116 Laws concerning the Haftorah
able to read the letters, a great light is drawn to him. And one
should sit during the reading of the Torah (Ben Ish Chai,
3. This is the Kabbalistic significance beyond the qualities of
each aliyah: the sixth allyah is considered the greatest, since
it is equivalent to yisod; the next in rank is the third aliyah,
equivalent to tifereth; third in rank is the Cohen, equivalent to
chesed; fourth is Levi, equivalent to g'vura; after him, the fourth,
equivalent to nezach; the fifth aliyah is equivalent to hod; and
lastly the seventh aliyah, equivalent to malchut. Therefore, a
minor can only receive the seventh aliyah (Ben Ish Chai, ibid,
4. The one receiving the aliyah should first note the place that he is
about the begin reading from, and see the first verse that he will
read. Next, he covers the script with the cloth, and pronounces
the first blessing on the Torah. Uncovering the cloth, he then
proceeds to read, and when done, covers the script once more
and pronounces the final blessing on the Torah. Care should
be taken at the time the blessings are being pronounced to
grasp the sefer torah by means of the cloth, and not by the
The obligation to grasp the sefer torah by use of the cloth
is only at the time of the public Torah reading, when the
Heavenly Lights are revealed; at other times, such as when
having to repair the sefer, etc., there is no need to grasp it by
means of the cloth (ibid, 18).
5. If one has begun reading the sh'ma, and he was called to the
Torah, he should not go up even if he was called by name,
unless he knows that he will be able to complete reading kriat
sh'ma while walking up to the Torah. But if he was reading the
blessings of kriat sh'ma, he may receive an aliyah.
127. 118 Chapter Eleven
6. The one who has received the aliyah, as well as the Reader
should not lean on anything, but stand erect. Nowadays, when
the Reader does the reading of the Torah, the olah should
repeat silently after the Reader so that he does not overhear
the olah and get confused. He should make efforts to receive an
aliyah at least once each month. When going up to the Torah, he
should take the shortest route possible to the bimah, and when
returning to his place, take the longer one. The congregation
is forbidden to walk out and leave the sefer torah uncovered,
even between two aliyot (ibid, 20).
7. Within the twelve month period after the passing of either one
of his parents, an aliyah for maftir is more beneficial than
an aliyah to complete the count of seven; and certainly so
if the maftir is one of the musaph Sacrifices; and even more
so if the maftir is the one of the Torah sections of parashat
parah or zichor, whose reading, following some opinions, is a
Torah obligation (ibid, 21).
8. It is forbidden to quarrel over an aliyah for any reason
whatsoever. By his silence, greater satisfaction will be caused to
his parent in the other world than by gaining an aliyah through
altercation (Kaf HaChaim, beginning of chap. 4, 6). Anyone
causing discord in the synagogue, despite his belief that he is
contending over a mitzvah, is likely to nevertheless transgress
serious Torah violations such as, "Do not hate your brother",
"Do not spread gossip", and, "You shall love your brother
as yourself .י This in turn can lead to acts of vengeance and
grudge-bearing, and to the grave offense of anger (so that in
the conclusion, very serious sins are brought about by one
believing that he is actually performing a mitzvah). Therefore,
the gabai, whose task it is to allocate aliyot, should make pains
not to cause anyone to feel slighted. Even if the other has
offended him, let him be enumerated among those that, "...are
129. 120 Visiting the ill on Shabbat
insulted and do not insult in turn", for his Heavenly reward is
then very great.
9. A Cohen or Levi make receive the maftir, since the gabai makes
mention of the fact that he is being given the aliyah despite his
being a Cohen (Kaf HaChaim, beginning of chap. 4, 24).
Accepting a tdanit yechid, comforting the bereaved,
and visiting the sick on Shabbat
1. One is forbidden to refrain from eating after the sixth hour from
sunrise on Shabbat morning. Ramah - or even to study Torah or
pray at that time (Shulchan Aruch, 288).
2. One may fast on a evil dream, hoping that by doing so the
Heavenly decree will be nullified. However, he must then fast
again on Sunday and beg forgiveness for having neglected the
pleasure of Shabbat. If he is too weak and cannot fast two
consecutive days, he may fast on another day instead (ibid).
3. Ramah ־ and certainly so if Sunday was either Chanukah, Rosh
Chodash, Purim, or Yom Tov (even if only the second day of
goliyot), when he is prohibited from fasting until after the chag.
Other opinions state that if he dreamt his evil dream during the
Shabbat afternoon nap, he may begin his fast then, continuing it
until midnight. Then he makes havdalah and continues his fast on
Sunday, when it will be reckoned as if he had fasted on all of
Shabbat (ibid, 288).
131. 122 Chapter Twelve
4. Some are of the opinion that one may not fast on Shabbat for
a evil dream unless it re-occurred three times. Others claim that
nowadays, one may not fast at all for a dream on Shabbat, since
we are no longer qualified to establish which dreams are good
and which evil. Common opinion has it, that it was discovered in
ancient sefarim that there are three types of dreams for which one
may fast even on Shabbat, and they are as following: if one
saw a sefer torah being burnt; a dream of the neilah prayer of
Yom Kippur; a house beam collapsing, or his teeth falling out.
Others add that if he dreamt of Yom Kippur, even if it was
not during the Neilah prayer; still others claim, that if he saw
himself reading the Torah; and others add, if he saw himself
marrying a women. What was previously mentioned concerning
dreaming of one's teeth falling out, pertains particularly to teeth,
not to the sinking of cheeks; seeing one's cheeks sink is actually
a good dream, for it portends the demise of his foes. It seems to
me, that included among the dreams for which one may fast on
Shabbat are those mentioned in the chapter of haroah.
5. One who fasts on Shabbat should say aneinu at the completion
of the mincha Service, without adding the brachah at the close of
the prayer, and including it in alohai nezor (ibid).
1. One may comfort the bereaved and visit the ill on Shabbat.
When visiting an ill person, he should not say the usual weekday
blessings, but tell him, "Not to cry out on Shabbat, may you
soon recuperate; His mercy is great, and may his Shabbat be
one of peace (Shulchan Aruch, 287, 1).
2. The Rabbis of the mussar movement state, that the chief motive
behind the mitzvah of visiting the ill is to see if they are in need
133. 124 Visiting the ill on Shabbat
of anything, especially those that are also destitute. To these he
should then extend aid to the best of his ability (Kaf HaChaim,
3. If one contemplates during the day on any one of those subjects
that if dreamt, are reason for making a fast on, he has no cause
for assuming that a Heavenly sign appeared to him in his sleep.
Therefore, he may not fast after dreaming of :hem on Shabbat
(Kaf HaChaim, 288, 15). However, he may approach others
and ask them to interpret his dream for the better (ibid, 20).
4. The author of the Sefer Agudot Aliyahu writes, that whenever
someone came to ask him if he could fast on a evil dream dreamt
on Shabbat, his reply always was that they should not fast, but
instead eat, drink, and enjoy the Shabbat. This, on condition
that they do not speak to anyone throughout the day, but sit
and recite the entire Book of Psalms. On the following day,
he may fast if he wishes; however, whatever was stated about
the need for fasting the morning after having a bad dream, was
intended only for those historical eras when they were expert in
interpretating dreams. He should also give charity to the best
of his ability, so that if the dream was a good one, it should
transpire, but if an evil one, God forbid, may be nullified (ibid,
5. No fast may take place on Shabbat for any reason whatsoever,
even in times of crisis. Neither may we raise a hue and cry
for any distress save for a food crisis, when we still may
not use a shofar to do so. Otherwise, a city under attack, a
ship at sea and in danger of sinking, or even a single person
in danger, may cry out and entreat in prayer on Shabbat. Even
then, an alarm is not to be sounded unless it is a necessary in
summoning aid (Shulchan Aruch, ibid, 8, 9).
135. 126 Chapter Thirteen
6. The custom is to pray for an ill person in mortal danger, and
it is then also permitted to say a mi shebairach for his speedy
recovery (Shulchan Aruch, 288, 10).
The morning meal, and seuda shlishit of Shabbat־׳
1. As in the evening, the morning kiddush must also take place in
the vicinity where he will later have his meal. Likewise, he may
not taste anything before kiddush. Drinking before the Morning
Service, however, is permitted since he does not have an obligation
to make kiddush until after the Service (Shulchan Aruch, 289).
2. In a location where wine is unavailable, beer or any other liquor
or beverage (chamar medinah), except for water, is acceptable
for kiddush. If none of the above are at hand, he begins eating
without kiddush and pronounces the blessing of hamotzi over
the challah, eating nothing else before it. If he should also have
no bread, he eats whatever is available, again without kiddush.
It appears from a certain statement made by the Rosh, that if at
Shabbat night one does not have any challah, he does not make
kiddush then either; at any rate, if he expects that bread will
later be brought to him, he should wait for it until no later than
midnight. At daytime, however, there is no need to wait at all
(chap. 289, and Be'ar Haytav).
3. One should add to the amount of fruit, delicacies, and aromatic
species at his table in order to arrive at a total of one hundred
137. 128 The morning meal and Seudat Shlishit
4. One should make an effort to eat the seuda shlishit of Shabbat,
and if he is sated, he can still fulfill his obligation with a k'baiza of
bread. If, however, he cannot eat at all, he has no obligation to
cause himself torment by eating. One with foresight will thus be
careful not to gorge himself at the morning meal, and save some
of his appetite for the seudah shlishit. The Magen Avraham states
that similarly, if one did not eat the evening seudah, he pronounces
the evening kiddush during the day, and follows it by eating two
meals (Shulchan Aruch, 298, and Be'ar Haytav, ibid).
5. The time for performing the seudah shlishit is at the hour that the
mincha Service may be prayed, i.e., six and one-half hours and
upward after sunrise. If he eats it any earlier, he does not fulfill
his obligation (ibid).
6. If the morning seudah lasted until the time had come for mincha,
he is to terminate the meal at once, and pronounce the birkat
hamozon. Then, after washing his hands and pronouncing the
hamotzi blessing, he resumes eating what is now the seudah
shlishit. Such is the proper method to follow in such an instance,
since if he were to continue his morning seudah, he will not have
any appetite left for the seudah shlishit except by forcing himself
to eat (ibid).
7. Ramah - whoever realizes that he will still be able to eat the
seudah shlishit after praying mincha with the congregation, should
not eat it before mincha; but if he does eat it before mincha, he
still fulfills his obligation.
8. He should pronounce the blessing of hamotzi on two wheaten
loaves, though there are opinions that claim that he can use loaves
made of any one of the five grains. Other opinions contend that
one may even make use of such foods as meat or fish, but not
fruit, while another opinion asserts that even fruit is suitable.
The first opinion is the generally accepted one, i.e., that bread
formed from wheat is to be used unless he is too sated to eat it.
139. 130 Chapter Thirteen
Ramah ־ or for situations where the eating of bread is impossible,
such as if Erev Pesach occurs on Shabbat. Then, one may not eat
bread from the time of mincha and upward, as will be explained
later in the section dealing with the Laws of Pesach.
9. Women are obligated to eat the seuda shlishit as well (ibid).
1. After the morning seudah, custom is to learn the Prophets and
hear lectures on the Aggadah, and it is forbidden to organize
meals at that time. Ramah ־ workers and laymen that do not
have much time to learn Torah during the week, should make
efforts to devote time to it's studyQ n Shabbat (Shulchan Aruch,
I have witnessed places where the entire Shabbat afternoon
is set aside for learning Torah, and even the seudah shlishit is
eaten in the Synagogue in order to make use of the precious
time wasted in walking home; and how fortunate is Israel.
It is indeed fitting for every one to join one of these Torah
study-groups, choosing one to match his mental abilties.
It is found in the holy writings of Rabbainu Chaim Vital,
quoting our master, the Ari 2&, as constantly exhorting him
to increase the number of sermon* intended to reprove the
community and bring them to repentance, for on this hinges
the Final Redemption (Kaf HaChaim, ibid, 12).
2. If one began eating the seudah shlishit while yet day and it became
dark, he may continue eating and finish his meal. Nevertheless,
the meal should initially not be began at the hour of bein
hasmoshot (Ben Ish Chai, vayaizai, 18). If the sun had already
141. 132 Havdalah
set, the seudah may not be begun, since now he has an obligation
to make havdah. As explained later in chapter 15 (see also
Kaf HaChaim, 299, 63), the time of bein hashmoshot begins
from the moment that the sun is no longer visible. In spite
of the fact that one is about to fail eating the seudah shlishit,
he may not begin it now, as one is forbidden to eat before
Havdalah of the evening amidah, and
the laws of havdalah over wine, candle,
1 • Havdalah is mentioned within the blessing of atah chonan in the
Evening amidah, and if one forgot to mention it, he need not
repeat the blessing; since he will make havdalah afterward on
wine, he is not required to repeat the amidah. If he tasted food
before making havdalah, he must repeat the amidah once more,
this time making mention of havdalah (par. 294).
2. If he forgot to mention havdalah in the amidah and does not have
wine for havdalah either, and in addition, realizes that tomorrow
too he will not have wine for making havdalah, he must repeat the
amidah once more and remember to mention havdalah this time
(chap. 294). It seems to me, that if he recalled that he hadn't
mentioned havdalah before he completed the blessing of shamaya
tfilah, he should say it within that blessing. But if he is going
to make havdalah afterward on wine, he need not do so (ibid,
Be'ar Haytav, Magen Avraham).
143. 134 Chapter Fourteen
3. If Tishi B'av is on a Sunday, and one forgot to make mention of
havdalah in the amidah, he need not repeat it, as he will make
anyhow on the night following Tisha B'av (ibid).
4. Whenever the ruling is that one is not required to repeat the
amidah if he forgot to say hdvdalah in the blessing of atah chonan,
he not repeat the blessing if he recalled his mistake immediately on
completing it, even if he hadn't yet begun the following blessing.
But should he wish to be stringent and repeat the blessing, he must
first complete the entire amidah and then repeat it again from the
beginning. Nevertheless, his second amidah can be reckoned as no
more than a voluntary one (ibid, Be'ar Haytav).
5. The havdalah procedure is wine, spices, and candle. Care should
be taken not to use wine that is 'marred', which can be remedied
by adding some wine or water to it, as mentioned earlier (chap.
296). But if the wine had been left exposed for a lengthy duration,
it can never be made fit for use again.
6. If one has no wine, he may pronounce the havdalah over beer
or chamar medinah as well as other beverages, excluding water
(ibid). Ramah - if no other wine is available, it is preferred to
make havdalah over a 'marred' cup of wine, than to use beer
7. Havdalah cannot be made over bread. If Yom-Tov was on motzai
Shabbat and kiddush was being pronounced over the challot, some
opinions state that he may then pronounce the havdalah over the
bread along with the kiddush, while others claim that it is preferred
that he say both over beer. Ramah ־ and the first opinion is to be
followed. Nevertheless, the Birkat Yosef rules, basing his decision
on the Darchai Moshe, that the second opinion is the conclusive
one, see there (chap. 296).
8. If one has neither wine, beer, or any other beverage, but expects
to find one of them the following day, he may not eat until
145. 136 Havdalah
he makes havdalah then. If does not expect to find wine the
following day either, he may eat without havdalah, and rely on
the havdalah recited during the amidah (inferred from the words
of the Beth Yosef, chap. 296).
9. Havdalah is to be recited sitting, while grasping the wine cup
in his right hand and the spices in his left. After the blessing
on the wine, the spices are switched to the right hand and the
wine to the left until after pronouncing the blesing on the spices,
when the wine is once more taken up by the right hand and the
spices by the left (ibid).
10. If all the members of the household have already heard havdalah
earlier in the synagogue, but they did not intend to fulfill their
obligation then, they may make havdalah afterward at home.
Also, women are obligated to hear havdalah no less than they are
obligated to hear kiddush (ibid).
11. A blessing is pronounced over spices only when they are available.
Otherwise, there is no requirement to make an effort to obtain
them (ibid, 267).
12. A blessing may not be pronounced over spices normally used to
aromatize the toilet, corpses, or if they belonged to a non-Jew,
since they generally utilize them in their places of worship (ibid).
The same applies to those spices mentioned by the Shulchan
Aruch in chapter 217, such as deodarants used to dispell body
odor, and soaps and spices placed in dishes or clothes to give
them a pleasant odor (Ramah).
13. A blessing of minai besamen may be pronounced on freshly-
ground pepper (Machzik Brachah, quoting Rishonim and several
Achronim, see chap. 297, as well as Kenesset Hagdolah).
14. Whoever does not actually smell them may not pronounce a
blessing over the spices, unless he intends to help the other members