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Women of the Wall” controversy, R. Meir Yehudah Getz, then Rabbi of the Kotel, indicated that the women’s use of the sefer Torah, though not customary, did not contravene halakha; see: Simcha Raz, supra, end of note 4, p. 241 therein. (In the latter instance, the issue of titul Sefer Torah was not clarified; the Torah scroll may have been privately owned.) Finally, the following posekim indicate that their objection is to a women’s Torah reading performed with benedictions: R. Ovadiah Yosef, Yom haShishi, 14 Shevat 5750 (February 9, 1990), p. 30; R. Isaac Yosef, Yalkut Yosef, II, sec. 143, Keriat haTorah beAsara, no. 4 and note 6, p. 135; R. Isaac Yosef, Kitsur Shulhan Arukh Yalkut Yosef, O.H. sec. 143, no. 5; R. Joseph Kappah, HaIsha veHinukha (Amana, Kefar Saba, 5740), p. 35, nos. 9 and 10; and R. Efraim Greenblatt, Rivevot Ephrayyim, VI, sec. 153, no. 12.

139.Perisha, Y.D. sec. 270, no. 8, and Siftei Kohen, Y.D. sec. 270, no. 5, prohibit reading from a Torah scroll when not halakhically required, even without the attendant benedictions, maintaining that such a practice shows disrespect for the Torah. The rationale behind this is that printed Humashim are readily available and the Torah should not be handled unnecessarily. This stringent position is rejected by R. Ovadiah Yosef, Haggada Hazon Ovadiah, supra, note 138; Resp. Yabia Omer, VIII, addendum to O.H. sec. 54, and many other posekim to be cited in Part 2 of this paper.

140.Resp. Radbaz, III, sec. 529 [964] and V, sec. 157 [1530]) regarding shenayyim mikra ve-ehad targum. Radbaz’s position is cited on O.H. sec. 285, no. 1 by Magen Avraham, no. 1; Kenesset haGedola; Mahzik Berakha, no. 2; Mishna Berura, no. 2; Arukh haShulhan, no. 7; Shulhan Arukh haRav, no. 4; Kaf haHayyim, no. 7; and Birur Halakha, no. 20, who offers additional citations. See also R. Chaim Elazar Shapira, Nimukei Orah Hayyim, O.H. sec. 669, end of no. 2; Resp. Torah liShma, O.H. sec. 58; and Yalkut Yosef, IV, part 1, sec. 285, no. 14. R. Yosef reiterates that the keriat haTorah benedictions may not be recited.

141.M.T., Hilkhot Melakhim 10:9.

142.See Radbaz to M.T., Hilkhot Melakhim 10:10. In a subsequent communication, R. Bleich responds that his broader interpretation of Rambam is the plain meaning of the text which is supported by Radbaz, Hil. Melakhim 10:9, and Yad Rama, Sanhedrin 58b. Furthermore, it places Rambam in consonance with the view of Rashi, Sanhedrin 58b, s.v. “Amar Ravina”, who maintains that Noachides are forbidden from keeping a Sabbath day even if the motivation is non-religious, e.g., merely for relaxation. See: R. J. David

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