Author Archives: Daniel Mann

This column is produced on behalf of Eretz Hemdah by Rabbi Daniel Mann. Rabbi Mann is a Dayan for Eretz Hemdah and a staff member of Yeshiva University's Gruss Kollel in Israel. He is a senior member of the Eretz Hemdah responder staff, editor of Hemdat Yamim and the author of Living the Halachic Process, volumes 1 and 2 and A Glimpse of Greatness.

Giving an Envelope on Shabbat to Use for Donations

by R. Daniel Mann Question: It is the practice in some shuls to give a self-addressed envelope to one who gets an aliya to mail his pledge after Shabbat. Is the envelope muktzeh? Answer: [We dealt with this question long ago (Vayeitzei 5773). We reasoned that the envelope is a kli shemelachto l’issur (the main purpose is for a forbidden-on-Shabbat ...

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Interrupting the Meal to Recite Shema

by R. Daniel Mann Question: When I make Shabbat early, I make a break in the meal to recite Kri’at Shema when its time comes. Recently, a guest told me that this is not only unnecessary but one is called a hedyot (a moderately derogatory term) for doing so. Should I change my practice? Answer: The mishna (Shabbat 9b) lists ...

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Lateral Position of Tefillin Shel Rosh – part II

by R. Daniel Mann Question: Must the tefillin shel rosh be exactly in the middle of the head, to the extent that some people spend several seconds fixing it in front of a mirror? Answer: [We saw a machloket whether the middle is a line on or (more likely) an area of the head. We will now search for the ...

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Lateral Position of Tefillin Shel Rosh – part I

by R. Daniel Mann Question: Must the tefillin shel rosh be exactly in the middle of the head, to the extent that some people spend several seconds adjusting it in front of a mirror? Answer: We have writing several times that the main issue with the position of tefillin shel rosh is their likelihood to be too far down. But ...

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Backing Out of a Bad Purchase a Little Late?

by R. Daniel Mann Question: [Adapted from part of a din Torah.] Reuven sold his car to Shimon (who paid immediately) and was to give the car to Shimon a week later. When Shimon received the car, the air conditioning was not working. Reuven apologized and said that his garage had promised to fix it already and that they would do so within a ...

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Tisha B’Av Pushed Off Until Sunday

by R. Daniel Mann Question: What is done differently this year, when Tisha B’Av falls on Shabbat and is pushed off to Sunday? Answer: Seuda Shlishit: The baraita (cited in Ta’anit 29a) says that one may eat an extravagant meal on Shabbat even when Tisha B’Av falls on Motzaei Shabbat. The Tur (Orach Chayim 552) cites minhagim that one is ...

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Zimun for a Sephardi, an Ashkenazi, and a Katan

by R. Daniel Mann Question: I am Ashkenazi. I was eating with a Sephardi and a katan (under bar mitzva). Were we supposed to do a zimun? Answer: We start with the only source I found on the topic, which provides practical (intuitively logical) guidance without explanation. Then we will provide the background and critique the ruling. V’zot Haberacha (p. ...

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Vigilante Neighbor

by R. Daniel Mann Question: Teenagers have been congregating in front of my apartment building, making noise, dropping cups and cigarette butts in our garden, etc. Many of them sit on the wall between our property and the sidewalk. One of my neighbors has begun to smear machine oil, to damage the clothes of the wall-sitters and thus discourage their ...

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Kabbalat Shabbat of Part of the Community

by R. Daniel Mann Question: My community has a small minyan for Kabbalat Shabbat that accepts Shabbat early, and no second minyan (there is a larger minyan for the rest of Shabbat). Must I accept Shabbat at the time the early minyan does, which is sometimes difficult for me? Answer: The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 263:12) rules, based on the ...

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Ushering in an Avel after Sunset of Shabbat

by R. Daniel Mann Question: You wrote in Bemareh Habazak (IX:94) that an avel may enter shul once sheki’a (sunset) has passed, even before the end of Kabbalat Shabbat. Should we say that, similarly after sheki’a, the shul should not “welcome” an avel by saying Hamakom yenachem …”? Answer: You may be assuming that one may not be menachem avel ...

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