The Shavuos Get

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On Shavuos 1831, a man in Brody, Galicia lay deathly ill. R. Eliezer Landau, grandson of the famous Noda Bi-Yehudah and author of the Yad Ha-Melekh commentary on the Rambam, had an idea that would save this childless man’s impoverished soon-to-be widow from being unable to remarry unless she made the improbable journey to Rome in order to perform chalitzah with her soon-to-be deceased husband’s only brother. R. Landau advocated writing a get on the second day of Shavuos, which would free the wife from an inevitable life of solitude.

I. The Reasons to Allow Writing the Get

Reportedly, his reasoning was as follows. The Gemara (Beitzah 6a) permits burial on the second day of Yom Tov because “in regard to the deceased, the rabbis made [the second day of Yom Tov] like a weekday.” Since in a situation of a levirate marriage the soul of the deceased hovers over his wife until the situation is remedied through either chalitzah or marriage, preventing this situation is a benefit to the deceased. Therefore, the second day of Yom Tov should be abrogated in order to benefit the soul of the deceased.

Additionally, the Peri Chadash (Orach Chaim 596; cf. Bi’ur Halakhah 614 sv. assur) permits on the second day of Yom Tov the (otherwise) rabbinic prohibition of putting out a fire that threatens financial loss (even though there is no threat to life). If a large financial loss is sufficient to permit putting out a fire, then the mitzvah of resolving an agunah case can certainly permit the similarly (otherwise) biblically prohibited writing of a get.

II. Forbidding the Writing of the Get

When R. Shlomo Kluger, the rabbi of Brody, learned about the effort to write a get on the second day of Shavuos, he put an immediate stop to it. Despite the enormous human tragedy, he could not allow the writing of a get on Yom Tov. When the man died and the widow was left unable to remarry, The man survived Yom Tov and died on the next day (link – PDF), but nevertheless a good deal of criticism was lobbed against R. Kluger. To settle the issue and absolve himself from criticism, he wrote to R. Moshe Sofer, the Chasam Sofer, to offer his opinion on the matter and, hopefully, confirm R. Kluger’s position.

Writing from a health spa in Piscani, Romania, where Jews still travel to this day to recuperate, the elderly and infirm R. Sofer (who would not live through the decade) wrote a strong confirmation of R. Kluger’s position that ends with a surprising insight into the second day of Shavuos (Responsa Chasam Sofer 1:145).

III. Reasons to Forbid Writing the Get

R. Sofer begins by stating the reasons to permit. He then notes the custom to circumcise stillborns based on the midrash that this protects sinners from suffering in the afterlife (see Shulchan Arukh, Yoreh De’ah 263:5). This is not done on the second day of Yom Tov (Shulchan Arukh, ibid. and Orach Chaim 526:10). Why not?, asks the Chasam Sofer, isn’t this a need for the deceased sinners? He answers that the Sages only permitted on the second day of Yom Tov the physical needs of the deceased and not the spiritual needs.

He also says that we cannot permit an (otherwise) biblical prohibition. We see from the case of burial that it is not permitted because there is a biblical obligation to bury a corpse. Rather, the Sages made a special exception for a corpse. If so, we see that even biblical obligations do not override the second day of Yom Tov and therefore the need to free an agunah is insufficient to override the day.

Furthermore, the permission to put out a fire (which itself is not followed — see the Bi’ur Halakhah cited above and the prior entry) is of a technical nature. It fits into the general pattern of permitted labors on Yom Tov that relate to cooking. Even though we are strict about it on the first day on Yom Tov, there is room to be lenient of the second day in extraordinary circumstances. Writing has no connection to this technical leniency.

The Chasam Sofer suggests a third reason to permit writing this get — to calm the mind of the dying man. We allow violating rabbinic prohibitions on Shabbos to calm the mind of a dying man, so maybe we can allow the writing of a get on the second day of Yom Tov also. He responds that, if so, we would also allow the writing of a will for a man dying on the second day of Yom Tov. People die on the second day of Yom Tov frequently, as they do on every day of the year, but we have never heard of anyone permitting the writing of a will. On this, he says explicitly, the lack of evidence is considered proof (lo ra’inu ra’ayah).

IV. The Second Day of Shavuos

The Chasam Sofer adds that the second day of Shavuos is stricter than other second days of Yom Tov (except Rosh Hashanah). The reason for the institution of the second day of Yom Tov is to continue the practice from the time when the court in Jerusalem would sanctify the month based on witnesses who saw the new moon. There was always a doubt whether the prior month would be 29 or 30 days, and therefore which day of the next month would be Yom Tov. If the court’s messengers reached your city in time, then you knew on which day to observe Yom Tov. If not, you had to observe two days. We still keep that second day of Yom Tov in continuation of that practice.

However, there was never any doubt about Shavuos. Messengers about Nissan had over two months to get to cities, and then Shavuos falls out 50 days after the second day of Pesach. People always knew when Shavuos was. However, the Rambam (Mishneh Torah, Hilkhos Kiddush Ha-Chodesh 3:12) explains, so as not differentiate between holidays, the Sages decreed a second day for Shavuos as well. The Chasam Sofer understands this to mean that for most holidays, the second day of Yom Tov was established based on a doubt. But the second day of Shavuos was established as a certainty. Therefore, the rules are even stricter than on the second day of other holidays.

This is quite an original interpretation, one that I find counterintuitive and difficult to understand. Nevertheless, according the index in the Frankel Rambam, R. Yosef Shaul Nathanson arrived at a similar conclusion about the second day of Shavuos (Responsa Sho’el U-Meshiv first series, vol. 1 no. 150; second series, vol. 2 no. 85).

About Gil Student

Rabbi Gil Student is the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of TorahMusings.com, a leading website on Orthodox Jewish scholarly subjects, and the Book Editor of the Orthodox Union’s Jewish Action magazine. He writes a popular column on issues of Jewish law and thought featured in newspapers and magazines, including The Jewish Link of New Jersey, The Jewish Echo and The Vues. In the past, he has served as the President of the small Jewish publisher Yashar Books and as the Managing Editor of OU Press. Rabbi Student serves on the Executive Committee of the Rabbinical Council of America and as Director of the Halacha Commission of the Rabbinical Alliance of America. He also serves on the Editorial Board of Jewish Action magazine and the Board of OU Press. He has published five English books, the most recent titled Search Engine volume 2: Finding Meaning in Jewish Texts -- Jewish Leadership, and served as the American editor for Morasha Kehillat Yaakov: Essays in Honour of Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks.

2 comments

  1. Query 05/16/2010 10:20 PM
    >the elderly R. Moshe Sofer, the Chasam Sofer, to offer his opinion on the matter and, hopefully, confirm R. Kluger’s position.

    Good grief, he was 69 in 1831. Not a young man, but certainly “elderly” is hardly a necessary adjective.
    ———
    Marc 05/16/2010 10:22 PM
    2 people liked this.
    This Hatam Sofer is famous – less famous is another Hatam Sofer (2:250) who offers the exact opposite understanding! This is important not because of the contradiction (noted by the Minhat Yitzhak, helek 7 [somewhere, can’t remember exactly where]) but because the nature of Shavuot can be understood in two totally opposite ways, even by the same person.

    Here is the relevant texts of the two teshuvot:

    שו”ת חתם סופר חלק א (אורח חיים) סימן קמה
    ובשלמא ×”×™×›×™ דמגיעים שלוחי ניסן עושין ב’ ימים גזירה משום שלוחי תשרי, אבל בשבועות שהוא לעולם × ‘ יום מי”ט ב’ של פסח ועד אז כבר נתפרסם בכל העולם קביעות ניסן וא”×› גם אבותינו לא עשו מספק, וצ”ל משום גזירה אטו פסח וסכות, וא”×› ממילא חמור טפי

    שו”ת חתם סופר חלק ב (יורה דעה) סימן רנ
    ומכ”ש ביט”ב דשבועות דכל עיקרו אינו אלא משום סרך ניסן ודניסן במקום שהשלוחי’ מגיעים אינו אלא משום תשרי ודתשרי גופיה משום מיעוטא דמיעוטא שבאו עדים אחר ×™×””×› וחזרו ב”ד מקביעות הראשון ובכל זאת לא הוה אלא נדנוד דרבנן דספיקא לקולא מן התורה
    ———
    Mike S. 05/16/2010 10:44 PM
    However, there is no mention of the matter in the beginning of Beitzah, as there should be if the Chasam Sofer is correct that the 2nd day of Shavuot is betorat vadai like the 2nd day of Rosh Hashanah. Nor was there any difference between Shavuot and Pesach or Succot regarding burial in the days before refrigeration.

    R. Ahron Soloveichick said the halacha does not follow the Chasam Sofer in this (i.e. that 2nd day Shavuot is more chamur than Pesach and Shavuot, not regarding the get.) The Shiur is available on the yutorah website. Rav Ahron suggests that the 2nd day of Shavuot reflects the safeik of pesach, even though it would have been resolved, but the connection between Pesach and Shavuot requires the parallel.
    ———
    phineas gage 05/16/2010 11:04 PM
    What was m’chayav of R. Kluger to get involved?
    Is there a mitzva chiyuves that requires one to take all measures to prevent chillul (second day) Yom Tov?
    To my (limited) knowledge, the authority to prevent Chillul Shabbos is given to a beis din, who may physically restrain a man who is about to leave the t’chum or start a fire. I think I remember learning that a yachid is also permitted- not to STRIKE, but to RESTRAIN. Where do we see an obligation to do this? Especially where remaining silent could have had such positive results as being Mattir this woman…
    ———
    chabadrevisited 05/17/2010 01:29 AM
    Very interesting Marc,
    אלא ואלו דברי אלוקים חיים
    ———
    Nachum 05/17/2010 02:06 AM
    I’ve always heard that the second day of Shavuot was made so it wouldn’t “feel bad” in relation to the other chagim (or lo plug, I suppose).

    I have to admit, I’ve always been *really* troubled by this story. It should be obvious why.
    ———
    hirhurim 05/17/2010 02:46 AM
    TEST

    Ari Enkin
    ———
    שבפ 05/17/2010 03:25 AM
    THE ORIGINAL STATUS OF yom tov sheni was institued as an optional in case of doubt what day was the FIRST day of the month. Based on today condition -כל המיקל תבוא עליו ברכה, כוחא דהתירא עדיף
    ———
    hirhurim 05/17/2010 07:29 AM in reply to phineas gage
    R. Shlomo Kluger was the rabbi of the town and in charge of all such functions.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile
    ———
    hirhurim 05/17/2010 07:49 AM in reply to שבפ
    I think you are saying that there is no need to observe Yom Tov Sheini anymore. Please show me one orthodox rabbi who agrees with you.

    Ari Enkin
    ———
    abc 05/17/2010 08:00 AM
    “People die on the second day of Yom Tov frequently, as they do on every day of the year, but we have never heard of anyone permitting the writing of a will.”

    I’m not sure I understand this, as a will is something that could have been, and should have been written prior to Yom Tov.
    ———
    dr. bill 05/17/2010 09:07 AM
    A difficult topic. on the one hand there is the opinion that in very distant places, the notion of 2nd day YT goes back to the time of the Neviim. OTOH, within the texts of the gemara on this subject one has to carefully distinguish between 4 periods: 1) al pi re’eah – with real doubt. 2) al pi re’eah with doubt lessened by knowledge of expected time of the moon’s visibility (particularly given weather conditions in Israel, 3) the early days of kiddush al pi cheshbon and finally 4) the last period and our rather strict observance of YT sheni. Hardly clear that observance was uniform in all periods.

    Note that in addition to shavuot, Tishrai holidays occuring after YK (which was (almost) always one day), and the last day(s) of Pesach and SA where shiluchim had additional travel time, leave only the first days oif Pesach (in addition to RH – a separate topic) as a time of maximal doubt.

    I also wonder if an additional motivation for the response of RSK and the CS may have been reaction to early efforts to curtail YT sheni. Do not know when that effort began?
    ———
    S. 05/17/2010 10:16 AM
    >I also wonder if an additional motivation for the response of RSK and the CS may have been reaction to early efforts to curtail YT sheni. Do not know when that effort began?

    Somewhat ironically, the modern attacks on Yom Tov Sheni began in 1832, that is the year following this incident. See H.J. Zimmels ‘The Controversy About the Second Day of the Festival’ and Jacob Katz ‘The Orthodox Defense of the Second Day of the Festivals,’ which is a more full treatment, and he points out that it was davka not an issue in early Reform, as the Hamburg Reform Temple did not abolish it, and the 1819 Orthodox tract Eleh Divrei Ha-berit doesn’t mention it, although he further points out that the Besamim Rosh is lenient on Yom Tov Sheni, and an 1811 book by J.L. Ben-zeev argued that there’s no doubt and it should be abolished. But this went unnoticed or uncommented. So 1832 it is.
    ———
    phineas gage 05/17/2010 10:26 AM in reply to hirhurim
    I understand that R. Kluger was the Rav of the town. Even if that translates to a Halaichic responsibility to pronounce his opinion (I’m not sure that it does), where would it mean that he must actually PREVENT chillul y”t?
    Can you give me a source?
    ———
    jadedtopaz 05/17/2010 10:28 AM
    Who did Rabbi Eliezer Landau get semicha from and what did he function as in the town of Brody.
    Isn’t there something very very wrong with a woman divorcing her husband on his death bed on Shavuous (first second or tenth doubtful day) in order to be able to marry other men without having to travel to Rome to do chalitzah.

    Peace of mind for the dying ?
    Aren’t they still husband and wife.
    How ill was the husband.
    What holiday did everyone supposedly say “naaseh venishmah” on.

    Creative loopholes that don’t address all of the underlying issues will eventually be the kind of loopholes one falls into when they start taking creativity too seriously.
    ———
    S. 05/17/2010 10:29 AM in reply to phineas gage
    The point is that in Brody in 1831 the sole authority to arrange gittin was R. Shlomo Kluger. Present models of the rabbinate should not be retrojected back onto the past. We may or may not prefer such a model, but that’s what it was.
    ———
    jadedtopaz 05/17/2010 10:50 AM
    R Brody was the “chief dayan and preacher” according to wikipedia (which implies that he was elected by the town for starters), one of his students was the original R Yosef Dov Halevi Soloveitchik, the Bais Halevi so this also suggests that he was quite the teacher .
    It’s not clear what R Eliezer Landau functioned as and who he got semicha from or which yeshivas he attended.
    ———
    jadedtopaz 05/17/2010 10:53 AM in reply to S.
    Correction R Shlomo Kluger Not R Brody, Brody is the town …….sorry.
    ———
    jadedtopaz 05/17/2010 10:56 AM in reply to phineas gage
    what does chillul hashem have to do with anything.
    I thought it was about the proper way to understand “halacha” properly and how life works.
    ———
    Steve Brizel 05/17/2010 11:06 AM in reply to S.
    Proofs from the Besamim Rosh, in light of his well known status as a Maskil masking as a Talmid Chacham, are hardly determinative on this issue.
    ———
    Steve Brizel 05/17/2010 11:07 AM in reply to שבפ
    See R Lamm’s comments re YT Sheni in his Haggadah.
    ———
    Steve Brizel 05/17/2010 11:11 AM in reply to Query
    Think about health conditions in 1831, as opposed to today.
    ———
    jadedtopaz 05/17/2010 11:32 AM
    Is this “get” writing practice from (what appears to be written from) a “Toen’s” perspective considered normative halachah when it’s not the second day of Shavuos or any yom tov sheini.
    ———
    phineas gage 05/17/2010 11:40 AM in reply to jadedtopaz
    i didn’t say chillul hashem. I said chillul yom tov.
    ———
    moshe shoshan 05/17/2010 11:47 AM
    Gil,
    good post.does this mean that according to the CS such a Get could be written on YT Sheni of Succos or Pessach?

    Steve,
    Believe it or not, the terms “maskil” and “talmid chacham” are not mutually exclusive. The problem is that the BR is a forgery. As Shneyr Leiman can tell you, one need not be a maskil to be a forger.
    ———
    hirhurim 05/17/2010 11:50 AM in reply to moshe shoshan
    Moshe Shoshan: Thank you. No, because of all the reasons he gives before. The second day of Shavuos part was just a postscript.

    Steve: I believe the point about Besamim Rosh was using him as a proof of what Maskilim/Reformers were thinking.
    ———
    jadedtopaz 05/17/2010 11:52 AM in reply to phineas gage
    sorry.
    Is this practice generally done when its not yom tov.
    ———
    S. 05/17/2010 12:06 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    >Proofs from the Besamim Rosh, in light of his well known status as a Maskil masking as a Talmid Chacham, are hardly determinative on this issue.

    Huh? I mentioned it because it could be considered an early Reformist view of Yom Tov Sheni.
    ———
    Joseph Kaplan 05/17/2010 01:23 PM
    I’d like to look at the halachic process involved. As I read this post, valid halachic arguments can be made allowing the writing this get and valid halachic reasons can be made prohibiting such writing. As I understand it from this post, R. Landau understood both sides to the argument and, because of the effect the decision would have on the people involved, decided in favor of allowing it. Since there were valid arguments on both sides, why, from a pesak POV, would a posek take the other side in this particular case? Is it only fear of precedence? But wouldn’t the third reason, in addition to the other two, really make this a sui generis case? Isn’t this exactly the type of case that a posek should, within the halachic system and not with a goal oriented agenda (that’s for my friend R’ Aryeh), take the very specific and unsual facts of the case into consideration rather than treating it as an academic thought exercise. As I read this post (and my knowledge about this case comes only from this post), that’s what R. Landau did. I’m bothered that the others did not and thus effectively condemmed the widow to a life of loneliness.
    ———
    jadedtopaz 05/17/2010 01:24 PM in reply to hirhurim
    Do you have a copy of the original “response” that R Kluger issued.
    Or which book I would find it in .
    I’m just curious how he deals with this issue in depth and what he focuses on.
    Does he focus on the same things the CS focused on.
    ———
    guest 05/17/2010 01:39 PM in reply to phineas gage
    Rav Shlomo Kluger was the Rov of the city and its Av Beis Din. Therefore, he had the responsibility to stop Chillul Yom Tov in his city.
    ———
    martinlbrody 05/17/2010 01:42 PM
    “unless she made the improbable journey to Rome in order to perform chalitzah with her soon-to-be deceased husband’s only brother. R. Landau advocated writing a get on the second day of Shavuos, which would free the wife from an inevitable life of solitude.”

    I don’t get it.
    Brody to Rome even in the 19th century wasn’t that far.
    ———
    guest 05/17/2010 01:45 PM in reply to Joseph Kaplan
    Rav Landau was NOT the posek who had the right to pasken and/or issue the get in this case. The town’s Rov and Av Beis Din – Rav Shlomo Kluger – was the one who had this right. He, and the Chasam Sofer, took into account all of the “specific and unusual facts of the case” and issued a pesak. Not everything is permitted.
    ———
    S. 05/17/2010 01:47 PM in reply to martinlbrody
    Not that far, but certainly expensive, and certainly difficult for what was most likely a monolingual (ie, Yiddish speaking) widow.

    Google Maps shows that the trip can be done by car in just under 20 hours. That’s almost 2000 km, but by car and on modern roads. I think it’s reasonable to assume that the trip would have been a major tircha for the widow in 1831. It wasn’t China, but it’s understandable why a way to avoid it was considered.
    ———
    Joseph Kaplan 05/17/2010 01:55 PM in reply to guest
    1. You raise a different halachic process issue (who is entitled to giive the pesak). I understand that issue and agree it is an important one. But my question remains, at least for me.

    2. I agree, “not everything is permitted.” But it seems from the details given in this post, that there are valid gounds to rule that in this situation writing the get WAS permitted. If there were no grounds, it would, of course, be a different story.
    ———
    hirhurim 05/17/2010 02:03 PM in reply to Joseph Kaplan
    I don’t agree with your description of the process of pesak. It isn’t that you can see arguments either way so decide based on other factors. Rather, the posek has to look at it himself and, if he can, come to a conclusion about what is the correct halakhah. Within that calculation is the halakhic leniencies allowed for extenuating circumstances. Personally, I didn’t see much substance to RE Landau’s arguments.
    ———
    jadedtopaz 05/17/2010 02:03 PM in reply to guest
    Was there an Eim Beis Din.
    Do you have a copy of Rav Shlomo Kluger’s decision.
    ———
    hirhurim 05/17/2010 02:14 PM in reply to jadedtopaz
    R. Shlomo Kluger’s decision can be found here: http://hebrewbooks.org/pdfpager.aspx?req=1175&s
    ———
    Steve Brizel 05/17/2010 02:32 PM in reply to S.
    Thanks for the clarification.
    ———
    Steve Brizel 05/17/2010 02:36 PM in reply to hirhurim
    I think that R Gil is pointing out the fact that while there are certain well known leniencies on YT Sheni, discussed in Shas, Rishonim and Acharonim, this appears not to fall into any of the recognized categories.
    ———
    Elon 05/17/2010 04:26 PM in reply to jadedtopaz
    I fail to see the point. If it was permitted to do so, it should be permitted. If it was permitted, it wouldn’t be desecrating Shavuot. Far as I can tell, taking a creative loophole seriously, something only possible because we have the torah, is the exact way to celebrate Shavuot.

    The fact that the halacha was not in accordance with Rav Landau, does not mean that we should investigate his semicha. If we did that every time the halacha was in accordance with another view, what Tanna would come out unscathed?
    ———
    jadedtopaz 05/17/2010 04:56 PM in reply to Elon
    I’m not actually that concerned about the desecration of Shavuot or “chillul yom tov” or chillul anything.
    I should not have questioned his semicha or his yeshiva background, it was not a respectful rhetorical question.
    Just to be clear though, I only questioned his yeshiva background/semicha credentials cuz I did not find his reasoning compelling.

    In fact my favorite example of an absolutely honest and brilliant “gemara kop” in 2010 is a federal judge , I have no idea if he is jewish or religious but reading some court transcripts, the first thing I thought of was WOW what yeshiva did he go to, this Judge must have yadin yadin semicha or something.
    I don’t think he actually went to yeshiva but he would be a brillliant dayan he is all about the absolute truth.
    So as long as one learns with the proper chavrusahs theres always hope 😉
    Perhaps one of his ancestors was a prominent talmudist/halachist/ dayan.
    Anyway,
    I’m more concerned about how this get would be both acceptable and ok.
    I have to read R Kluger’s decision carefully in order to understand what he focused on and the reasoning/sources he employed in order to reach his decision.
    ———
    MiMedinat HaYam 05/17/2010 05:42 PM in reply to abc
    its not “echel nefesh”.

    but can you write a will (or a get, for that matter) on chol ha’moed?

    a will, i presume,. is not “calligraphy” / ktav ashurit. but a get is. (or is it?)
    ———
    MiMedinat HaYam 05/17/2010 05:55 PM in reply to MiMedinat HaYam
    piestany (sp) is an old spa town in modern day slovakia. many of us know of it as the hometown of rav sholomo teichtal, author of “eim habanim smeicha”. (i believe his grandchildren run a chabad house there.)

    2. a couple of years ago, i saw a “sefer” claiming that in time of moshiach (the satmar one, not the lubavitcher one) we will keep two days of yom tov, even in israel! based solely on a rashi they intrpret to mean thus, they managed to fill a decent sized book with this idea.

    i’ll consider it a chumra de jour type concept, but they will obviously not accept such a get; will require chalitza.
    ———
    Yossi 05/17/2010 07:36 PM in reply to dr. bill
    Of course pesach occurs in the middle of the month, so I ask where is the doubt at all.

    A very valid point abou Succot and Shminie Artzeret.
    ———
    Yossi 05/17/2010 07:44 PM in reply to MiMedinat HaYam
    “i’ll consider it a chumra de jour type concept, but they will obviously not accept such a get; will require chalitza.”

    That is an intersting question. Can a Get written b’chillul shabbat or Yom Tov have any legal effect? Does it matter if the people involved did not think they were being Mechallel Yom Tov/Shabbat?
    ———
    Nachum 05/18/2010 01:52 AM
    R’ Rakeffet is preparing a presentation on the Besamim Rosh where he’s planning to argue that if he’d lived two hundred years later, he’d have made a great YU Rosh Yeshiva. Not sure about the forgery bit, but I imagine he’s referring to his level of observance. Pace Steve, “maskil” and “religious Jew” are far from being exclusive. Probably every professor in Revel and quite a few YU Roshei Yeshiva could be described as maskilim, as could a large percentage of Torah teachers in Israel and quite a few historical figures in Torah leadership.
    ———
    Shlomo 05/18/2010 04:31 AM in reply to Yossi
    Why wouldn’t this work? The get exists. The delivery took place, and even if transactions on Shabbat are forbidden, IIRC they are still valid if performed. The writer had the husband and wife in mind while writing the get (“lishma”) – Shabbat does not affect that. Other than that, you need witnesses. Perhaps if you say “edei hatima kartei” then there will be technical difficulties giving that edut on shabbat (your signature on shabbat makes you pasul for edut?) and perhaps not. But if you say “edei mesira kartei” there should be no issues.

    Disclaimer: this is not lemaaseh.
    ———
    lawrence kaplan 05/18/2010 10:10 AM
    The CS’s refutation of the argument of benefitting the soul oft dying man seems very strong. OTOH, as abc pointed out the CS;’s refutation of his own argument re calming the mind of a dying man by bringing the analogy of not writing a will seems weak.

    The BR was not a maskil “masking” as a talmid hakham. He was a talmid hakham — and a brilliant forger with a makilic agenda.
    ———
    S. 05/18/2010 10:27 AM in reply to Nachum
    >R’ Rakeffet is preparing a presentation on the Besamim Rosh where he’s planning to argue that if he’d lived two hundred years later, he’d have made a great YU Rosh Yeshiva.

    I think the first word for that is dumb.
    ———
    Steve Brizel 05/18/2010 10:43 AM in reply to Nachum
    That’s an interesting statement, especially in light of R S Z Leiman’s multiple discussions and demonstrations from within the text of Besamim Rosh that the teshuvos cannot be authenticated as having been authored by Rabbeinu Asher and that the author inserts a Reformist agenda, as opposed to merely a Maskilist POV, even in the most positive sense of that term. It is well known that many Acharonim,, among them, R Akiva Eger, the CS and the Avznei Nezer had highly critical comments about the authenticity of Besamim Rosh and its author. I would like to see how R Rakkafet claims thatthe Besamim Rosh would have made a great RIETS RY.
    ———
    Steve Brizel 05/18/2010 10:46 AM in reply to Nachum
    I said that Maskil has more than one meaning, as R Gil pointed out. However, as Larry Kaplan, being a Talmid Chacham who forges documents to suit one’s religious agenda seems to be a case where the negative sense of the term is well deserved.
    ———
    Nachum 05/18/2010 11:05 AM
    Um, that’s a forger, not a maskil. It’s like saying that “football player” means “murderer” because OJ Simpson is both.

    Words mean things. “Maskil” means something, and it ain’t “forger.”
    ———
    Steve Brizel 05/18/2010 11:33 AM in reply to Nachum
    See R Gil’s article re the positive sense of Maskilim. One can be a Maskil and be a great Talmid Chacham without engaging in forging of manuscripts.
    ———
    Steve Brizel 05/18/2010 11:37 AM in reply to Marc
    What is the question posed and the date of each of these teshuvos?
    ———
    S. 05/18/2010 05:14 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    The negative sense of the term has nothing to do with whether the man was a talmid chochom. In addition, his flaws as a human being (e.g., dishonesty) had nothing to do with him being a maskil, or a talmid chochom. Mendelssohn, as a contrast, was known for being scrupulously honest and kind.

    Actually, I’m reminded of an Uncle Moishy song, which defines “talmid chochom” as something like “one who learns Torah every single day, and studies veeeery, very hard, aaand follows all the mitzvos of Hashem.” That’s kind of perceptive. In that sense, I suppose, one can maybe quibble that a corrupted talmid chochom isn’t really a talmid chochom, but as far as I know, R. Shaul Berlin wore tefillin every day, and was completely observant all his life.
    ———
    S. 05/18/2010 05:17 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    Gil’s post is (in my opinion) wholly inadequate, as he basically defines maskil as someone with Judaic interests outside of the yeshivishe massekhtos, and even suggests that R. Elchonon Wasserman is therefore a “maskil.” That kind of speaks for itself.
    ———
    Steve Brizel 05/18/2010 05:47 PM in reply to S.
    I don’t think that a Talmid Chacham that is true to how the term is classically defined can be equated with someone who forged texts, regardless of his level of ritual observance.
    ———
    Steve Brizel 05/18/2010 05:51 PM in reply to S.
    I think that you mischaracterized R Gil’s post. R Gil focused on the role that the development of Halacha and TSBP can be found in such Acharonim as the Netziv in the Hakdama to Emek Shealah, the Chidah and R Elchanan, who especially provided much assistance in determining whether we have such basic Rishonim as Rashba, Ritva and Ramban on many Masectos and identifying what had been printers’ mistakes. I think that some misguided individuals would dismiss the same as “Maskilishe.”
    ———
    phineas gage 05/18/2010 06:33 PM in reply to guest
    Uh, I think you just put my question in answer form.
    “When Rabbi Kluger heard about the effort to write a get… he put an immediate stop to it.”
    The blog post makes it sound like the get was going to be written with or without Rabbi Kluger.
    In Rabbi student’s response, now it sounds like it cannot be written without Rabbi Kluger: “He was in charge of all such functions.”
    Which was it? Was he himself the writer of the get, and as such he could not involve himself personally, or was he a rabbi whose permission to write a get was necessary (I have never heard of such a thing)?
    In the first case, it could be that Al Pi Halacha, he didn’t have to say anything. In the second case, where is the source for this?
    ———
    phineas gage 05/18/2010 06:38 PM in reply to hirhurim
    Rabbi Student,
    Remember that time your hat blew off and landed under a car on Shabbos? Remember how you were reaching for it and other people were warning you it would be Hotzaoh? To the point that one of them offered to buy you a new one if you just let it be? I believe you said in that post that there were a couple reasons to Permit- 1. Under 4 amos in Rshus Harabim, 2. dragging isn’t carrying (or something very similar.) 3. You gave as a third reason a SNIF L”HAKEL—— and that was the fact that some poskim ALLOW the use of the Eiruv in Brooklyn!!! It would seem from my bekius in Hirhurim that you are contradicting yourself. Can you please explain?
    ———
    S. 05/18/2010 06:54 PM in reply to Steve Brizel
    >I don’t think that a Talmid Chacham that is true to how the term is classically defined can be equated with someone who forged texts, regardless of his level of ritual observance.

    You’d be surprised.

    >I think that you mischaracterized R Gil’s post. R Gil focused on the role that the development of Halacha and TSBP can be found in such Acharonim as the Netziv in the Hakdama to Emek Shealah, the Chidah and R Elchanan, who especially provided much assistance in determining whether we have such basic Rishonim as Rashba, Ritva and Ramban on many Masectos and identifying what had been printers’ mistakes. I think that some misguided individuals would dismiss the same as “Maskilishe.”

    I don’t think you understood his post at all. You only focused on the end of his definitional statement. Here is the beginning:

    “A maskil is someone who has sustained interest in issues of what is generally (and often improperly) considered non-traditional aspects of Torah scholarship. For example, Hebrew grammar or Jewish history. ”

    Even if “some misguided individuals would dismiss [what you said] as “Maskilishe,” leshitascha that’s Gil, only he doesn’t dismiss it.
    ———
    Steve Brizel 05/21/2010 12:50 PM in reply to S.
    Take a look at the interview with RHS in the latest issue of Kol Hamevaser , especially his comments re manuscripts and metzius. I can’t think of too many other RY and Talmidei Chachamim who would voice such opinions.
    ———
    er 05/24/2010 12:27 PM in reply to Shlomo
    I realize this is coming in late but I only just saw this, and couldn’t let this go without resonding. Even we, who (basically) hold eidei mesira karti, that only means that if a get has no eidim signed on it at all, it’s still kosher with eidei mesira. However, if there are posul eidim signed on a get, then the get is considered mezuyaf metocho, and is batul (posul?), even with two kosher eidei mesira. I don’t have a shulchan aruch in front me of now, so I can’t give a cite, but there is a siman in Even Ezer (in the 130’s or 140’s) about this very issue, whether (and when) a get that is written on shabbos or yom tov is kosher or not.

  2. Does anyone know where the Yad Ha’Melech writes this leniency to write a get in that particular circumstance, or where it is quoted?

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