Torah Riddles Test #175

2. Question: According to Rav Moshe Feinstein why can a man who already heard megilla read it for a woman who has not heard megilla yet even according to the opinion that she is not part of arvus, every Jew is responsible for another which is why one can fulfill a mitzvah for someone else even if he already fulfilled the mitzvah himself?


A. The Digul merivivah says that women didn’t accept responsibility for each other to make sure we accomplish mitzvos, at Har Gerizim and Har Eival when we received the blessings and curses before entering the land. According to this opinion a man cannot fulfill a mitzvah for a woman, like kiddush or megilla, if he already fulfilled the mitzvah himself. He can’t do the mitzvah again.

B. Reading the megilla publicises the miracle. There is a mitzvah you get when publicizing the miracle.

 Answer: In the Igros Moshe (Orach Chaim first part chapter 190) Rav Moshe says that by megilla reading one who already read can help others fulfill the mitzvah even without the concept of arvus since the reading is to publicize the miracle and one who already fulfilled the mitzvah of reading still has a mitzvah to publicize the miracle as much as possible, so he still considered part of the mitzvah and can help others fulfill the mitzvah of reading megilla even if the concept of arvus doesn’t apply to them (See Dirshu Mishna Berura in back page 127, footnote 10).

Torah Riddles Test #174

1. Question: Why does one have to stand with the baal korei when he is saying the blessings on the megilla for you but he does not have to stand with the baal tefilla when he is saying the blessing for the omer for you?


A. Rav Dovid Cohen based on the teachings of the Chazon Ish said that the concept of “listening is like saying” is not just that he is saying it for you but by listening it’s as if you are saying it yourself.

B. Part of the mitzvah of saying the omer with the blessings is standing, just as hearing what’s being said is part of the mitzvah.

 C. One can technically sit when reciting and definitely listening to the megilla but should stand when saying the blessings.

 D. The concept of “listening is like saying” (שומע כעונה) applies to the mitzvah that the other is helping you fulfill but, for example people should stand during chazaras hashatz according to the Rema 124:4 out of respect for the blessings the chazzan is reciting when repeating shemone essay out loud and by doing so it’s as if the congregation says it based on “listening is like saying”.

Answer: By the omer since standing is part of the mitzvah so if the chazzan stands for you then you fulfill the mitzvah but by megilla the standing isn’t part of the mitzvah, you can really sit but out of respect for the blessing everyone should stand so it does not help if the one saying the megilla stands for you (See Dirshu Mishna Berura 690 footnote 2).

Torah Riddles Test #173

2.    Question: Why does an onen who has involved himself in the burial of his relative have to repeat shema after he buries the dead even if he said it when he wasn’t supposed to while preparing to bury the dead but if one is in involved in any other mitzvah like a sofer who must be working when it’s time to say the Shema, if he does say it even though he is exempt from saying it while involved in another mitzvah he does not need to repeat Shema when he’s done with this mitzvah?


A.   The Shulchan Aruch and Rema (Orach Chaim 38:8) say that those who write Tefillin and Mezuzos… and anyone who is involved in “the work of Heaven” are exempt from putting on tefillin the entire day besides by Shema and Shemone Esray. And if they need to do their job during the time, they should be saying Shema and Shemone esray then they are exempt from reciting Shema, Shemone esray and putting on tefillin because any one who is involved in one mitzvah is exempt from another if it would be hard to do the other one but if you can do both without any hassles then do both. The Be’ur halacha there adds in the name of the Ra”n that the Rambam says that even if you can do both you are exempt because when one is involved in doing Hashem’s work the Torah doesn’t bother you and obligate you to perform other mitzvos even if you can. However, the Shaar Hatzion later on (475:39) says that if you do the other mitzvah then you fulfill that mitzvah since he is a person who is obligated in the mitzvah it is just that the Torah doesn’t obligate you to perform it at this time and it’s unlike an insane person if he performs a mitzvah while legally insane, he does not get credit for performing it.

B.   The Mishna Berura (71:3) says that an onen who recites the Shema or hears megillah (see Mishna Berura 696:26) must do it again after the burial. The reason given is out of respect for the dead, so that people won’t say that you don’t care about your dead relative, that he or she died.


 Answer: Respect for you dead relative is different than respect for Hashem. Because if you do one of Hashem’s mitzvos while involved in another one you are still respecting Hashem because they are both His mitzvos therefore even though you shouldn’t do it if you do it, you don’t have to repeat it. But doing another mitzvah besides caring for the dead while you are supposed to be  caring for the dead is a lack of honor to the dead so it’s as if the mitzvah was not fulfilled and therefore must be done again after the first mitzvah is finished. [/exempt]

Torah Riddles Test #172

1.    Question: Why are you allowed to pass by the entrance of a shul when there is a minyan in progress and we are not worried you are skipping davening if there is another entrance into the building but if there are two entrances on different side of your courtyard you have to light Chanukah candles at both entrances so people won’t think you don’t light?


A. The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chaim 90:8) says that it’s forbidden to pass the entrance of a shul on the outside when the minyan is davening because it looks like you deny Hashem since you don’t go inside to daven. Then he lists a bunch of exceptions because they are excuses which prove you aren’t denying Hashem.

B. There is a loss of money when lighting Chanukah candles.

Answer: The Beis Yosef (Tur Orach Chaim 671:8) in his second answer says that since there is a loss of money involved by light Chanukah candles then people will suspect that if you didn’t light on one side maybe you didn’t light at all to save money but by davening where there is no loss of money then people won’t suspect you of anything wrong if there are two entrances.

Torah Riddles Test #171

2.       Question: The Pnei Yehoshua asked in Bava Kamma 23b: Why are eidim zomimin liable to pay full damages for testifying that an ox is a muad, a habitual gorer for goring 3 times, even though he has not gored the fourth time yet, but if let say two witnesses testify that a person has two pubic hairs which means he’s bar mitzvah and they are found to be eidim zomimin, why wouldn’t they be put to death since if this kid did a sin deserving of capital punishment, for example murder, or breaking Shabbos, then he would be put to death since he is bar mitzvah based on their testimony?


A.      Eidim zomimin are false witnesses who are proven wrong by two other witnesses who say you were with us on that day and so could not have the ability to testify what you testified. There punishment is what they were trying to give the defendant.

B.      An ox is considered habitual to gore after 3 goring but only after the fourth one is the ox owner liable to pay full damages, before that he only has to pay half damages.

C.      What is each scenario trying to testify and judge?

 Answer: Capital punishment is only the consequences of becoming a bar mitzvah but the testimony was strictly about his status of bar mitzvah so giving them the death penalty won’t be exactly punishing them with what they were trying to do to him. But the witnesses of a muad status was trying to create a status of needing to pay full payments for the animal’s violence so even if it didn’t actually gore a fourth time yet but the witnesses tried getting a status of muad on this animal which is considered as if full damages was sentenced based on their testimony if it happens again so they have to pay for that full damage status.

Torah Riddles Test #170

1.       Question: Why can one of the witnesses who sign on a get marry the divorced woman later on in life but two witnesses that sign on a document of sale of a piece of land can never buy that land?


A.      The Shulchan Aruch (Even HaEzer 12:1) says that the messenger who hands a get to the wife, who needs to say, “it was written and signed in front of me”, also, the single witness who testifies to a woman that her husband died, can’t marry her because of suspicions that might arouse. But if they do get married, they don’t have to separate. But if a messenger brings a get and is not required to say, “it was written and signed in front of me,” he is permitted to marry her since he’s not marrying her based on his own words. So too, two witnesses who testify that her husband died, one of them can marry her because two don’t normally coerce to sin for one. However, the Rema argues and says that even though it’s technically permitted for one of the two witnesses to marry her but a ba’al nefesh, one who holds himself to higher standards should distance himself from this.

B.      However, the Taz (2) holds that even a ba’al nefesh can marry her, he just cannot buy the land he had signed with someone else as witnesses of a document of sale since people will say he’s involved in a scam to just acquire that land. What’s the difference?

Answer: The Taz holds that two witnesses can both be involved in coercion over a piece of land since they can both partner in benefiting from it but only one person is allowed to be married to a woman at a time so we wouldn’t expect two people to be involved in coercion over testimony of a wife and therefore even if you normally have higher standards one of the witnesses can marry the widow.

Torah Riddles Test #169

2.       Question: Why does the Mishna Berura (31:2:7) allow one to take off his tefillin after kedusha of shachris on Chol Hamoed but does not allow one to take off his Rashi pair and put on his Rabbeinu Tam pair during chazaras hashatz, after kedusha, (see 34:2:14)?


A.      The Mishna Berura in one place says that on Chol Hamoed tefillin should be taken off before Hallel and now people have the custom to remove them after kedusha however you have to be very careful to listen and answer to chazaras hashatz.

B.      Elsewhere he says, … and not like those who take off their Rashi tefillin and put on their Rabbeinu Tam tefillin right after kedusha, and in truth besides doing it inappropriately as explained earlier in 25:13 that since Rashi tefillin are the main ones they should only be taken off by Uva litzion, also one has to listen and answer to chazaras hashatz and shouldn’t be involved in anything else.

 Answer: The Dirshu Mishna Berura in footnote 3 of 31:2:7 says that since one needs intent upon putting on tefillin then one will be distracted from chazaras hashatz but when just taking off tefillin one won’t be distracted.

Torah Riddles Test #168

1.       Question: If a husband had two wives die from childbirth why can he marry another one but if two sons die from bris milah his third son cannot have a bris?


A.      The Shulchan Aruch (Even HaEzer 9:2) says that if a man had two wives die, that does not mean he can’t get married again. Even though if a woman had two husbands die, she isn’t allowed to remarry a third time because there is an assumption that she has bad mazel and any man she will marry will die, as stated in si’if 1 (See Beis Shmuel 9:1:1 there).

B.      The father is “blamed” for the deaths of his sons and once two died we assume the third will die as well from circumcision.

 Answer: We can assume that the father gave his sons “weak genes” so that they physically can’t handle the bris but that would not affect his wives as the Beis Shmuel says in si’if katan 7.

Torah Riddles Test #167

2.    Question: Why does a lack of kavanah for making the tzitzis for the sake of the mitzvah a problem as soon as the strings are put into the hole but this concept of making it properly in order and not out of order and just falling into place is only an issue once you start tying the strings, especially if they are learned out of the same verse?


A.   An example of out of order would be folding and pushing through one big string through the hole then cutting it into 8 strings so that they can be tied.

B.   Another example is tying the strings before the corners were made into real corners instead of rounded.

 Answer: The mitzvah process starts as soon as the strings start going through the hole so you need proper intent but you didn’t actually start making something until you start tying so have a bit more time to get it into the right order.

Torah Riddles Test #166

1.    Question: According to the Levush what is the difference whether one corner of tzitzis broke and you only have to retie that corner, but if one corner was tied when the corners were rounded and then all four corners were made pointed and the rest of the corners were tied properly, you still have to redo all of them again?


A. There is a concept by tzitzis that they must be made in the right order, not that everything is done and automatically the mitzvah falls into place once it is all sorted.

B. Example of the wrong way is tying tzitzis on a three-corner garment then cutting a fourth corner and tying it.  You have to retie   all four corners because the four corners must be there first then tie them all.

 C. The Magen Avraham questioned why the 3-corner case was a problem since the other corners were tied properly why should all the tzitzis be invalid since one was? Furthermore, the Machatzis Hashekel asks why it is no different than one tzitzis breaking, why isn’t it that the tzitzis on the other 3 corners are also invalidated and they all would have to be retied?

D. The Levush does say that all the tzitzis strings were made in an invalid state and stayed invalid because it was automatically set not made right, from the start.

E. The tallis is part of the mitzvah of tzitzis because the tallis and tzitzis become one piece of clothing.

Answer:  Once one corner was made out of order then the whole garment is invalidated even if the other three tzitzis strings were tied after the fourth corner was cut out so all of them have to be redone but if all strings were tied properly on a kosher garment and then one string broke that does not mean all four have to be restrung because the garment is still valid, only the one string broke so only that one must be fixed.