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Thought for the Day: I Made a Mistake and This is a Correction

I used to be shy about admitting mistakes in learning for fear that people would think that I am not a reliable source.  Just because I made little mistakes, I thought, shouldn't stop people from listening in general.  After all, continued my yeitzer hara, better for them to at least listen the to things I am right about about and the other things aren't really so bad.  As I have learned more and begun to really appreciate the depth and breadth of my ignorance, however, I am thrilled to have concrete examples of why you need to be an skeptical consumer.  I have enough problems with my own deficiencies in avodas HaShem, thank you.

Case in point, I reported in Thought for the Day: Some Things That Trump T'filla b'Tzibur, that the psak of the Mishna Brura is that if a person consistently comes late for davening that he should just daven in order; skipping, I erroneously reported, is only for the occasionally tardy.  A good friend challenged on on that statement.  I looked and looked in siman 52 (the laws of one who is late to davening but still before yishtabach) and couldn't find that p'sak again.  What the Mishna Brura does say over there is that even if one does not regularly daven with a minyan because he gets up too late,  but once in a while happens to get there near the end of p'sukei d'zimar, then by all means he should skip to get t'fila b'tzibur at least this time (s.k. 1).  I was not ready to retract, however, because many are the p'sak of the Mishna Brura that show up in odd nooks and crannies.  Besides, which, I knew I had seen that wording about not working except on an occasional basis.  And even more besides which, I am stubborn.

I am happy to report that I was correct in remembering the wording.  It just happens to be in a different context.  Namely, how early can you say k'ri'as sh'ma.  In siman 59 (hilchos k'ri'as sh'ma), syef 4, the Shulchan Aruch says that one who recites k'ri'as sh'ma after alos hashachar has, after the fact, fulfilled his obligation.  On that the Mishna Brura (s.k 19) says this this is davka only occasionally, once a month or so, that one can be yotzei b'di'avad.  However, if a person regularly says k'ri'as sh'ma before the appropriate time, then even b'di'avad he has not fulfilled his obligation and must repeat.  Unless, the Mishna Brura, continues, it there is a constant pressing need ("sha'as d'chak" are the words he uses); in which case it is permissible, because what choice does he have?

I know I already sent out a TftD today, but I was uncertain if a thought for the day and a retraction for the day make for two thoughts or zero.  Surprisingly, I decided to be machmir.


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