Why do two sets of witnesses combine to testify about what happened in the
middle even if they saw it from opposite side windows and the public domain is
in the middle but a group of people on either side of a public domain who can
even see each other cannot combine for a zimun of Birkas hamazon?
A. The testimony case is a Mishna in Makkos
daf 6b and the question is asked by the Responsa Hilchos Ketanos volume 2
chapter 147 based on a Beis Yosef in Orah Chaim chapter 195 in the name of the
B. The answer is not like the Aruch
Laner who said the case in Makkos is not dealing with a public domain in the
C. What is the “combine” factor that is by testimony but is not there by a zimun?
Answer: By a zimun if the public domain is in between the group they are not considered together and there is nothing to combine them. However by testimony where they in fact come together in court to testify that is considered a form of combining, it is just that in order to be considered one group some of them have to see each other as well when they witness what they are testifying about.
How can you rely on a posek to poskin if we don’t rely on one witness?
A. A single witness is not believed against a
chazaka/ halachically presumed assumption to testify about something in
reality. An example is a person saying a certain animal or bird is of the
permitted species even though it has a chazaka of not being from the permitted
B. The rabbi who is clarifying an issue (not
one which is explicitly verifiable in sources) and using his own reasoning to
resolve the issue might decide something which is going against the prevailing
chazaka. How can he do that?
C. Why would one person deciding something in halacha against a chazaka be any different than one person testifying about the reality of something against the prevalent chazaka?
Answer: The witness is testifying head on directly against the chazaka therefore he isn’t believed against it. But the rabbi is clarifying an issue which might affect other things in Halacha but also affects this very chazaka so since he is not directly going up against the chazaka he is believed to clarify the Halacha which happens to contradict the chazaka. Or you can say that the witness is trying to make up something new which is against what was originally thought but the rabbi is just uncovering something that was unclear before.
Question: Why does the concept of “toch kidei dibur” work to correct
oneself if he says the wrong day of the Omer but not if he mentions Shabbos
instead of Yom Tov in his shemone esray?
A. “Toch kidei dibur” is the concept of
realizing one made a mistake and immediately correcting himself within a
certain short amount of time which is the amount of time it takes for a student
to greet his rebbe saying, “Shalom aleichem rebbe umoreh.”
Mishna Berura (Orach Chaim 488:6:32) says “they further write that if one makes
a mistake and says ‘today is the fourth day of the omer’ and toch kidei dibur
remembers it is the fifth day, it is enough to just finish ‘fifth of the Omer’
and he fulfills the mitzvah even if he didn’t say ‘today is the fifth day’
since it was still within the allotted time of correction.
C. If one
on Yom Tov says “mikadesh hashabbos” instead of “mikadesh Yisrael vihazmanim,”
the Mishna Berura (487:3) says one must go back and say “mikadesh Yisrael
vihazmanim” and it’s not enough just to correct oneself toch kidei dibur and
say “Yisrael vihazmanim” after concluding “mikadesh hashabbos.”
D. When Yom Tov falls out on Shabbos we say in our shemone esray “mikadesh hashabbos Yisrael vihazmanim.”
Answer: Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach explains that it is not recognizable that you are correcting the mistake you made since that is just what you say on Shabbos Yom Tov but by the Omer it does look like he is correcting himself since one does not count twice in one day. (See Dirshu Mishna Berura there note 68.) [/exapnd]
- Question: Why in England and places similar to it can they rely on
the leniency that in 3 days wheat seeds will take root before the counting of
the Omer in regards to yoshon?
A. The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chaim 489:10)
says it is forbidden to eat from the new grain even nowadays…until the
beginning of the night of the 18th of Nissan, and in Israel until the beginning
of the night of the 17th of Nissan. (The Mishna Berura and Beur Halacha there
explain at length how people nowadays are lenient in this halacha.)
B. The Mishna Berura in note 44 says that
which is forbidden from the new grain to eat is grain that took root after the
16th of Nissan which is when they used to bring the Omer offering. If the
grains took root before the Omer, the Omer made them permissible to eat. This
mitzvah only applies to the five types of grain, wheat, barley, spelt, rye, and
There is an argument between the Sha”ch and Terumas Hadeshen whether it takes
two weeks for these grains to take root or 3 days. (See Shach in Yoreh Deah
293:2 and Nekudas HaKesef there.)
D. The Responsa of the Minchas Yitzchok (Volume 6, chapter 43) says places like England can rely on the Terumas Hadeshen that it takes 3 days for the grain to take root, why?
Answer: It rains a lot in England so roots take root quicker.
Question: Why can’t you say the blessing over challah for others at
any Shabbos meal if you aren’t eating challah yourself but you could say the
blessing for vegetables at the Seder on Pesach for karpas even if you aren’t
participating in it, for others?
A. The Mishna Berura says in (167:92)
that the reason why one can say a blessing for someone else even to do a mitzva
even if he himself already fulfilled the mitzvah is because “kol Yisrael
areivim ze la’ze” we are all responsible for each other to do mitzvos so if one
didn’t do a mitzva it is as if you yourself didn’t do the mitzva yet. However
when just eating to eat, though one is obligated to say a blessing in order to
eat and one cannot get pleasure from the world without a blessing but one can
always choose to not eat and not need a blessing so the one who is not eating
but would say a blessing for you is not considered obligated to say the
B. The Mishna Berura (273:19) says it’s not an
obligation as a mitzva to eat challah at the 3 meals of Shabbos, rather if one
wants to enjoy food on Shabbos he has an obligation to say a blessing on lechem
mishna, two loaves of challah, but technically if he enjoys fasting he does not
have to eat.
C. Karpas is only eaten to make the children ask questions and is not an obligation to be eaten.
Answer: The Dirshu Mishna Berura (484:1:4:4) quoting Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach says karpas is different because its main purpose is for a mitzva, of telling over the story of the Exodus and not for any enjoyment but lechem Mishna which is mainly for one to eat on Shabbos is considered for the sake of enjoying one’s food.
- Question: What is the Chazon Ish’s psak about one who swears: “I will
not eat matzo on the night of Pesach and the seven days of the holiday “?
A. The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chaim
siman 485) says that if one in general swears “I will not eat matzo” he is
forbidden to eat matzo on the night of Pesach. If he swears “I will not eat
matzo on the first night of Pesach” he gets lashes and must eat matzo on the
night of Pesach.
B. The Mishna Berura there says that
as a rule if one includes in his oath something that applies to a mitzva and
also does not apply to a mitzva, the oath works and he can’t even do the mitzva
like in this case if he swears in general to not eat matzo even if he says this
on the night of Pesach, since it includes eating matzo in general which is not
a mitzva and the night of Pesach which is a mitzva, he still cannot eat matzo
even for the mitzva. But in the other case since he specified not eating on the
night of Pesach then we can assume he was referring specifically to not wanting
to fulfill the mitzva and an oath to not fulfill a mitzva or to transgress a
mitzva does not work.
C. The Be’ur Halacha says that if one swears “I will not eat matzo the whole week of Pesach” the oath works according to most poskim, even though Pesach is mentioned explicitly because the oath is inclusive of both matzo to be eaten for non-mitzva and mitzva purposes.
Answer: The Chazon Ish (Orach Chaim 123:2) says that since he separately mentioned the night of Pesach, it is not considered an oath inclusive of permissible (non-mitzva) things, rather it is two separate oaths, one for the night of Pesach and the other for the rest of the holiday and therefore the oath does not work for the night of Pesach and he must eat matzo then for the mitzvah.
Rabbi Akiva Aiger asks and answers in his Responsa, first version, siman 30:
Why do you make a blessing on separating Terumah even if done in one’s mind but
a blessing is not said over bitul chometz, which can also be done in one’s
A. The Mishna Berura 432:1:3 says that you
don’t say the blessing of “al bitul chometz “ upon nullifying the chometz since
the main part of the bitul is dependent on the heart and we don’t say blessings
on matters that pertain to one’s heart or thoughts.
teruma is separated from fruit it is given to the kohen but in this case the
teruma is separated in one’s mind and the blessing is goes on separating
teruma, not the giving.
C. What is Rebbe Akiva Aiger’s answer?
Answer: The purpose of separating teruma is to give it to the kohen so even if it was separated in one’s thoughts it is as if he did something which has an action since in the end it will lead to an action, i.e. giving it to the kohen. But nullifying the chometz is completely done in one’s heart even if he verbally announces it to the world.
Why does one make a blessing of “al biur chometz” at the time of burning when
he found chometz on Yom Tov but before Pesach we say the blessing by the
checking, bedikas chometz?
Magen HaAlef (2) poskins that if one realizes on Yom Tov that he did not check
for chometz before Pesach then he should check for chometz and cover it if he
finds any because it is muktzah on Yom Tov and then on chol hamoed he should
burn it with a blessing.
B.Normally we say the blessing and check for
chometz the night before the eve of Pesach, then burn it in the morning, which
is the proper time to burn the chometz, before chatzos, noonish. By chatzos all
chometz is forbidden and automatically made ownerless by the Torah if you have
not done it yourself by then.
normal circumstances the checking at night is considered the beginning of the
mitzvah of burning and that is why the blessing is said then.
D. In both cases the checking and burning are on different days so why is the blessing said at different times?
Answer: As long as the time for burning hadn’t come yet then the checking is considered the beginning of the process of burning but once the time of burning already past and you found chometz on Yom Tov but you can’t just burn it until chol hamoed then the checking isn’t considered the beginning of the mitzvah since the time you burn has already past, so finding it is just one action and burning it is another action which just couldn’t be done earlier since it was muktzah. (See footnote 4 in Dirshu Mishna Berura 435:1:3)
Why do we apply the rule of “Trei mashehu lo amrinan” that little bits don’t
transfer twice when it comes to foods but not when it comes to vessels like a
A. The Mishna Berura (467:9:37) says, If a
ladle stirred soup that had a cracked kernel of barley found inside it on
Pesach while piping hot then you use the ladle to stir another boiling hot pot
it ruins all the food in the pot and the pot because since it can prohibit with
even a little bit then we assume even that little bit of taste went out of the
spoon and into the next pot of soup.
B. The Shaar Hatzion (67) says this
only applies by a spoon transferring from liquid to liquid but if that cracked
barley kernel fell on a piece of hot meat and then that hot meat got mixed up
with other hot solid foods like vegetables and there is a majority to nullify
its taste, then as long as you can see and take out that solid piece of meat
which had the chometz absorbed in it, then everything else is permitted at
least to get benefit from and even to eat if not eating it would detract from
the joy of Yom Tov.
C. The Taz (17) asks why the rule that little bits of taste don’t transfer twice apply to the spoon mixing two pots of soup just as it applies to the food.
D. Food has their own tastes absorbed in it but spoons don’t have their own tastes absorbed in them.
Answer: The Dirshu Mishna Berura note 41 quotes the Elya Rabba (447:1) saying that a little bit [of taste] absorbed in a spoon is different from a little bit absorbed in a solid food substance, for when it is absorbed in food the [foreign taste] clings to it and does not get spit out again from it and therefore we can apply the rule of “trei mashehu lo amrinan” but when absorbed in a spoon, since the spoon does not have its own taste, then the [chometz taste that was absorbed] does not cling to it so it then gets spit out into the other pot [the spoon was mixing.]