Audio Roundup 2019:45

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by Joel Rich

Anyone aware of any women who do not do mlacha after shkia during the period between Pesach and Shavuot? Men? (see S”A O”C 493:4)

The chavot yair (252) was asked by a talmid chacham (TC) about the following circumstances: The TC’s cousin vowed to provide the TC with weekly wine for Kiddush. The TC would rather use his own wine as he doesn’t want to have a freebie with which to do a mitzvah (see Samuel 2.24:24) He fears however it would be stealing to use the provided wine as the cousin would not have given it to him if he knew he wasn’t using it for Kiddush.
The chavot yair provides a detailed analysis of whether such a condition is truly binding [the whole less than 100% free and clear sale topic is an interesting one – is it not a sale if the condition isn’t met or is there a separate obligation] What caught my eye however was his endorsement of the TC’s preference to pay for his own kiddush even if the wine wasn’t as good! It’s not based on the passage from Samuel [I suspect since that case was a purchase from a non-ben brit) but rather because “tfei hiddur v’dikduk mitzvah havi im koneh ladavar mkiso dlo havi msitca d’chinam dmistra milta yesh lanu od rayah mhazohar” it’s more of a beautification and scrupulousness in mitzvoth if he buys it himself so it’s not free and even though this is clearly logical, we have a proof from the zohar.] My question is why is this so clearly logical? The usual “hiddur” is in the mitzvah itself, which in this case would be accomplished with the better donated wine. In addition, the TC would now have funds to secure additional mitzvoth (e.g. tzedaka).
My meta guess would’ve been soneih matanot yichyeh (it’s better not to take gifts) but that would require not taking the donated wine at all – which didn’t seem up for grabs. Any thoughts other than behavioral economics? (we value our own things more).

Please direct any informal comments to [email protected].

About Joel Rich

Joel Rich is a frequent local lecturer on various Torah topics in West Orange, NJ and supports his Torah listening habits by working as a consulting actuary.

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