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Section: Questions   Category: Halacha
  A r c h i v e s
Halacha - Sukkah Roof
Submitted by Alex Rose  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer:

I commend you for your foresight in searching for an apartment compatible with building a sukka. I'm still not sure if I understand the situation precisely, and it may be helpful if you could email a photo of the porch.

Let me give a little background and see if that helps clarify the issues. There are 3 qualifications for sechach to be Kosher. It must grow from the ground, as opposed to metal, glass or plastic. It must not be an object capable of becoming tamei such as food or a vessel with a receptacle. It must not be attached to the ground, as opposed to a tree branch that has not been severed. Furthermore, a roof that is used the entire year is not valid for a sukka, even if it meets all 3 criteria. If you would screw down the slats, they would become comparable to the tree branch and would be lacking in the third condition. It would not help to loosen just a few slats, because the remaining ones would be invalid as if they were made from metal. It also does not help to avoid sitting under the screws, because the problem is not the screws themselves but the slats which they would render pasul. That is why I recommended placing a couple of 2x4s on top of the slats to hold them down. Their weight should make the sukka safe but not create an issue of being attached.

posted:2009-02-16 07:26:15  (0) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - Sukkah Roof - Schach
Submitted by Alex Rose  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer: The wooden slats that support the sechach may be screwed down. While there is a chumra to avoid using metal to support the sechach even indirectly, a chumra should not lead one to do anything potentially dangerous. However the sechach itself should not be permanently attached to the walls, and doing so would render the sukka invalid. A better alternative would be to lay a couple of heavy, wooden beams on top of the sechach to prevent it from blowing away.
posted:2009-02-14 19:44:50  (0) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - Yom tov shani shel galus
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer: Any takana that was enacted by a Beis Din, such as the second day of Yom Tov, can not be cancelled without convening a new Beis Din that is superior to the original in quality and quantity. However, there never was a takana regarding kedushas shvi'is on a lulav. The Halacha is that an agricultural product which is usually consumed through its typical manner of use has kedushas shvi'is, and this used to apply to a lulav and no longer does.
posted:2008-12-08 17:18:11  (0) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - Women dancing with a Sifrei Torah
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer:

The Rema in Orach Chaim 88 concludes that a nida should not touch the Sefer Torah. Since most single girls are niddos in addition to many of the married women, the Shevet HaLevi concludes that it is inappropriate for women to dance with the Sefer Torah. He writes that this is despite the fact that it would be a significant opportunity to strengthen the women's appreciation and love of the Torah, still it is not proper.

posted:2008-10-26 17:40:52  (0) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - SIMCHA TORAH
Submitted by DAVID HARTMAN  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer:

The first mention of Simchas Torah is in the Zohar where it says that on Shmini Atzeres they would take all the Sifrei Torah out of the Aron HaKodesh. The Machzor Vitry, 12th century, is the first to mention hakafos, but only in the morning. The Maharam MiRottenberg, 13th, adds hakafos also at night. The Arizal, 16th, is the first to describe specifically 7 hakafos. Interestingly, the Mechaber in Shulchan Aruch does not mention at all the concept of Simchas Torah and describes the second day of Shmini Atzeres as a regular Yom Tov.

The Gemara writes that until after the destruction of the Beis HaMikdash, Rosh Chodesh was determined by witnesses testifying in Beis Din on the appearance of the new moon. Therefore, places distant from Eretz Yisroel would not know if the previous month was 29 of 30 days until after Yom Tov began, and they would always keep two days in doubt which one was the real Yom Tov. Even later after the design of the set calendar, this minhag remained unchanged.

posted:2008-10-23 15:33:12  (0) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - Hakofot on Shmini atzerert night
Submitted by Bernard Moskowitz  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer: Hakafos is a later minhag celebrating the completion of reading the Torah, so there is no need to be so stringent on a minhag and anyways there is nothing to celebrate until we finish the next day.
posted:2008-10-23 00:00:13  (0) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - Al HaMichya
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer: Yes we do.
posted:2008-10-19 01:43:19  (0) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - Work in the Succah
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer: The mitzva of yeshivas sukka includes all the actions we would usually do in our house. Therefore, one should not only eat and sleep in the sukka, but also learn, shmooze and work etc. In my family, we refer to the sukka as home and the house as the machsan (garage) for the duration of the Yom Tov.
posted:2008-10-12 10:27:25  (0) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - Succah
Submitted by I.Lewis  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer: In Israel we eat our last meal in the Sukka on Hoshana Rabba which is the 20th of October. Outside Eretz Yisroel where you have 2 days of Yom Tov there are different minhagim; some eat the entire meal on Shmini Atzeres the 21st of October in the Sukka while others make kiddush in the Sukka and eat the meal inside. In any event we don't sleep in the Sukka after the the 20th.
posted:2008-10-06 17:08:35  (2) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - hearing the shofar
Submitted by steven hope  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer:

In Chumah it says that Rosh HaShana is a "day of terua", but doesn't specify blowing or hearing. The Yerushalmi explains that it refers to hearing, and based on that the beracha we say is "to hear the shofar". This is furthermore supported by the Mishna in Rosh HaShana that says that if one blew the shofar but did not hear the sound that came out he does not fulfill his obligation, obviously hearing is an intrinsic part of the mitzva.

posted:2008-10-05 08:13:48  (0) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - smoking on yom tov
Submitted by baruch  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer:

I am not aware of any opinions that smoking on Yom Tov is more lenient than the remainder of the year.

But to your point, once upon a time, when the dangers of tobacco were not recognized, there were different opinions on smoking on Yom Tov. The issue is that while melachos in general are forbidden, but preparing food and other personal enjoyment is permitted within specific guidelines. In order to be considered "personal enjoyment", it must be something that most people would derive pleasure from the action, hence the debate in the past if smoking is inherently pleasurable or not. However, today that most people do not smoke and many are repulsed by the odor of tobacco; there remain no grounds to permit smoking on Yom Tov.

It should be added that the majority of Poskim forbid smoking the entire year, and R' Moshe Feinstein zatzal only permitted one to continue smoking if he was already addicted before the dangers were realized, but to begin smoking is certainly forbidden.

posted:2008-09-07 12:34:40  (0) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - solution to kol koreh on Shabbos-mode ovens
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer:

I'm not going to publicly take sides on a machlokes between Gedolei HaDor, but I will point out that Reb Shlomo Zalman Auerbach zatzal clearly would have agreed with Rav Heineman yblc and permitted. There is a very basic disagreement between Reb Shlomo Zalman zatzal and Reb Elyashiv yblc on the definition of grama, whether a machine designed to work through grama still has the heter of grama. My understanding of the "tweaker" is that it does not resolve the main grama issue, only the side problem of pushing buttons. Therefore, while someone who conducts himself according to the psak of Rav Heineman may gain an added benefit by installing the "tweaker", I don't see how someone who follows Rav Elyashiv's psak could rely on it.

posted:2008-08-03 05:14:58  (2) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - Money on Yom Tov
Submitted by Miroslav Holubec  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer: Money may not be used at all on Yom Tov, neither to buy food even for consumption on Yom Tov, nor for selling even to goyim. If you own a store, it should be closed on Yom Tov.
posted:2008-07-01 02:52:32  (0) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - yomtov
Submitted by baruch  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer: The accepted halacha is that anyone in an inhabited area must refrain from melacha on the second day. If one would be outside the city, it would be permitted.
posted:2008-04-22 02:07:22  (0) comments   email to a friend


Halacha - Yizkor
Submitted by Nosson Dayog  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question:
Answer: The prohibition of mourning only covers demonstrations of grief and saddness, however, Yizkor is not meant to be sad and is not a manifestation of mourning.
posted:2008-04-17 14:54:56  (0) comments   email to a friend


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