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Is someone who is wheelchair-bound obligated to say matir asurim or zokef kefufim if they cannot get up?

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I just want to point out that the term "wheelchair-bound" does not take into account that many people who use wheelchairs experience independence and freedom of mobility by using them. (Otherwise, they'd be stuck in bed all day.) As such, matir asurim would be the appropriate b'rachah to say when getting into a wheelchair according to that experience. A similar argument may be possible with zokef kefufim, too. – Shemmy Apr 27 '12 at 11:05
up vote 8 down vote accepted

There is an argument between the Rambam and the Kolbo (who quotes the Gaonim).

According to the Rambam, one only blesses Hashem for the benefits that he receives in the order in which he receives it.

According to the Kolbo, the blessings are not for his personal benefit, but for the benefit derived by the world. Therefore, one must say all the blessings even if he was awake the whole night.

Moreover, he says that even if one does not receive direct benefit in what the blessing refer, he still receives indirect benefit. For example, a blind person receives benefit from the power of sight in that people could help him.

The Shulchan Aruch (OC 46:8) worries for the position of the Rambam thereby ruling to say the blessing without Hashem's name, but the Rama and the Arizal rule like the Kolbo.

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Rambam also stresses that the brakhoth are to be done upon the action. He considers that when, say, people recite "poqeah `iwrim", "zoqef kafufim", etc with the tzibur for Shaharith, each is a brakha levatala because they are not said upon the action. With this in mind, there is no question from the standpoint of the Rambam that a person who is unable to do the action associated with a certain brakha cannot recite the brakha. – Aman Apr 27 '12 at 9:13
ty 4 the answer – Adam Mosheh May 20 '12 at 5:52

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