Skip to main content

Thought for the Day: Eiruv Tavshilin, Rosh Chodesh, and Purim

I am, b'ezrash HaShem, going to tell you why you don't need an eiruv tavshilin when rosh chodesh or Purim fall on erev Shabbos.  Personally, I think the answer will be more meaning full if I first tell you why you would even think such a thing in the first place.  After all, you are probably just now wondering that.  In case, though, you've been wondering about this for eons I don't want to increase your distress by making you wait even another two paragraphs.  Hmm... ok:
Because there is no chiyuv s'uda (rosh chodesh), and we don't make g'zeiros on g'zeiros (Purim)

For those of you who are left... The Shulchan Aruch 525:14, says that you should make the eiruv tavshilin mamash erev Yom Tov, but you are fine even if you make the eiruv tavshilin on one Yom Tov for a later Yom Tov (as long as the eiruv is still good to eat after all that time; smoked fish or whatnot).  The Mishna Brura explains that there are two reasons given as to the purpose of the eiruv tavshilin.  Rav Ashi says it is so your preparations on yom tov sheini are a continuation of the preparations done before the holiday started.  Rava says it is so you choose something nice for Shabbos before you get so wrapped up in simchas yom tov that you eat up all the goodies.  We pasken like Rav Ashi, so that's why you can make an eiruv tavshilin any time before the holiday.  L'chat'chila, however, we like to cover our bases and perform the mitzvah in such a way that Rava's reason is also covered; that, of course, is the reason to make the eiruv tavshilin mamash erev Yom Tov.

Now comes the fun part.  According to Rava's reason, the issur malacha is irrelevant (a red herring, if you will).  The problem he is addressing is related to you getting all wrapped up in the simcha and eating... which happens also with rosh chodesh and Purim.  Cool, eh?  We pasken like Rav Ashi, but why wouldn't Rava have required an eiruv tavshilin in those cases.  And since the Shulchan Aruch wants us to be choshess for Rava l'chatchila.  So what gives?

The Sha'agas Aryeh addresses the rosh chodesh issue.  Namely, while there is an issur to fast on rosh chodesh, there is no chiyuv s'uda per se.  Given that the chiyuv is not there, we are not worried about forgetting Shabbos.  It seems we are only worried about forgetting Shabbos when we are involved with fulfilling another mitzvah; just stahm eating a nice meal won't make us forget Shabbos.  That doesn't explain Purim, however.  Others want to say that since you can do malacha on Rosh Chodesh, Chazal weren't worried about forgetting Shabbos... you could always make something or run out to the store before Shabbos starts.  That, of course, also explains Purim.

How would the Sha'agas Aryeh explain Rava's not requiring an eiruv tavshilin before Purim that falls on erev Shabbos?  One could say, Chazal did not add decrees to decrees -- ein gozrin g'zeira l'g'zeira.  That's my value added... so it's particularly chaviv to me.


Popular posts from this blog

Thought for the Day: Battling the Evil Inclination on all Fronts

Yom Kippur.  When I was growing up, there were three annual events that marked the Jewish calendar: eating matzos on Passover, lighting candles on Chanuka, and  fasting on Yom Kippur.  Major news organizations around the world report on the "surreal" and "eerie" quiet of the streets in even the most secular neighborhoods of Israel.  Yom Kippur.

As you know, I am observant of Jewish law.  Some have even called me "ultra orthodox" (not in a kind way).  Given that, I have a question.  How likely do you think that I would be tempted to eat on Yom Kippur, that most holy day of the year?  Let's make the scale zero to ten, where zero is "as likely as driving through McDonald's on Shabbos and ordering a Big Mac with extra cheese." and ten is "as likely as breathing regularly".  Take your time.  If you answered "zero"; thank you, but -- sadly and penitently -- no.  The answer is more like nine; I'd like to say lower, but i…

Thought for the Day: Sometimes a Food Loses Its Identity When It Loses Its Bracha; Sometimes It Doesn't

Let's start with a question: Why are We Allowed to Drink Coffee and Whiskey Made by Non-Jews?  Before you ask,"Why would I think that I shouldn't be able to drink whiskey and coffee made by non-Jews?", I'll tell you. Simple, we all know that Chazal made a decree -- known as בישול עכו''ם/bishul akim -- that particular foods cooked by non-Jews are forbidden.  There are basically two criteria that determines if a dish falls into this category:
Is not consumed raw.Fit for a royal banquet. Cooked carrots, therefore, are not a problem since they can be eaten raw (I actually prefer them that way).  Baked beans are find because the are not prestigious enough.  (For great synopsis of the laws, see the article on the Star-K site, FOOD FIT FOR A KING, by Rabbi Moshe Heinemann, shlita.)  There are lots of cool questions and details (baked potatoes are prestigious, does that make even potato chips and issue?) which are for another time.  Clearly, though, both coffee an…

Thought for the Day: Coming Into This World for Torah, Avodah, and Acts of Loving Kindness

This TftD is so self-serving that I should be embarrassed.  But I am not... talking about grandchildren is always off budget.  I have, bli ayin hara, a beautiful new grandson; born at 6:11 PM CDT last Friday night.  The secular (aka -- by me, anyway -- slave) date is October 20, 2017 CE.  The Hebrew (aka Real) date is certainly Rosh Chodesh חשון/Cheshvan and certainly in the year 5778 since Creation.  The date, you ask... good question!

Sundown on Friday night was 6:01 PM CDT, which means he was born either at the end of the last day of תשרי or the beginning of the first day of Cheshvan; a period know as בין השמשות/twilight.  What's the big deal, you ask... I am so glad you asked.  We all deal quite handily with בין השמשות every week and every holiday; we're just stringent.  We start Shabbos and the first day of Yom Tov before בין השמשות; that is, before sundown.  Likewise, we end Shabbos and the first day of Yom Tov after בין השמשות; some 42, 50, 60, or 72 minutes after sundo…