Ritual hand washing. Required before or after certain actions, e.g before eating bread, after waking up, etc.

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19
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7answers
2k views

Washing hands for eating pizza

How many slices are required to make you responsible to wash on Pizza?
14
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4answers
310 views

Women and Mayim Acharonim

I very often eat at meals where after the meal, all of the men wash mayim acharonim, but none of the women do so. I am aware of a number of halachic sources that say both men and women should wash ...
14
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3answers
588 views

What is the source of netilat yadayim before eating bread?

From where do we learn that one must wash one's hands before eating bread? What does washing one's hands before bread symbolize? Why is ritual hand washing required for bread, but not other foods?
11
votes
3answers
216 views

What's the reason for the opinion that one must wash their hands thrice before eating bread?

Some sects of Ashkenazim (mostly Litvish) wash their hands only twice, while some Sephardim and some Hasidim wash three times. Based on this answer I know that the first splash gets rid of the ...
10
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2answers
236 views

Forgot to wash but said hamotzi

If I inadvertantly forget to wash and said the bracha hamotzi, and have just broken the bread, but not eaten yet, what should I do next?
10
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2answers
304 views

When I wake up before Alot Hshachar and won't go back to sleep, what can/can't I do?

If I wake up early in the morning, like any time from 2am to 6am, before Alot Hashachar, and I'm pretty sure I'll start my day and not go back to sleep, at least not before a possible afternoon nap, ...
9
votes
4answers
191 views

Washing for bread before Kiddush. Convenient for sukkos?

There is a custom followed by Jews of German extraction to wash for Hamotzi before making Kiddush. See OC 271 (12) MB{61}. This is very convenient for those who have an outside sukka and don’t want ...
8
votes
4answers
479 views

Can I wash and say “please pass the salt”?

After washing one's hands before eating bread, one is not supposed to talk until he has made Hamotzi and partook of the bread. I understand that general chatter is not allowed. But what about for ...
8
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2answers
226 views

Does one need dry hands before washing?

I've always noticed people that make sure their hands are perfectly dry before washing (i.e. washing for eating bread). Why do people do so? Where does this apparent stringency come from?
8
votes
2answers
181 views

What is the source for washing Mayim Acharonim with only a few drops of water?

OC 181 (4) MB [10] says that when washing mayim acharonim one must wash up to the second knuckle and using a few drops does not fulfill the mitzvah at all. Shulchan Oruch HaRav 181 (4) says there is ...
8
votes
2answers
109 views

If one hand gets dirty, do both require washing?

I'm in middle of davening, and scratch a usually-covered place using my little finger (pinky) on my right hand. This requires me to wash my hand before continuing. Do I have to: wash both my hands? ...
8
votes
1answer
110 views

Does the Levi who washes the hands of the Kohanim have to be over bar mitzvah?

The Leviim wash the hands of the Kohanim when they go up to bless the people. If a Levi is not available a first born (to the mother) can wash (according to the Askenazi custom) instead, Orach Chaim ...
8
votes
1answer
134 views

Do you have to do netilat yadayim for a brief waking?

If a person wakes up in the middle of the night to perform a small, brief action (say putting a pacifier back into a baby's mouth) is she required to do netilat yadayim (washing her hands ritually)?
7
votes
2answers
239 views

Remove rings to wash?

Do I need to remove my wedding-band, which I wear every day, to wash for Hamotze or morning Negel vasser? What about other rings?
7
votes
1answer
256 views

Should you greet a non-jew after washing netilat yadayim?

If you wash netilat yadayim and then a non-Jew says "hello" to you, should you: say "hello" back and wash again? try to acknowledge him without actually talking? or ignore him (doesn't seem right)? ...
7
votes
2answers
211 views

Is Mayim Achronim required before Al Hamichya?

As the title asks: is it required or recommended before Al Hamichya (or for that matter, borei nefashos as well). And if yes or no, why or why not?
7
votes
2answers
311 views

Why when washing for bread do we splash twice?

Is there any particular reason the procedure for washing hands for bread includes pouring the water twice on each hand? Isn't once enough?
7
votes
2answers
187 views

washing your hands and forgetting

If you wash your hands and your mind goes blank and you dont remember if you said a bracha or not. do you make a new one? Do you wash again and then make a new one?
7
votes
2answers
60 views

Does Ruach Ra'ah transfer between people

If one washes netilays yadaim in the morning and thus eliminates their ruach ra'ah and then someone who has not yet washed their hands touches you do you have to wash again?
6
votes
3answers
352 views

What's the deal with all the washings?

Sometimes we wash with a cup, sometimes not; sometimes we wash twice, sometimes thrice; and not everyone agrees on method or pattern in all cases. Who says which ways we are supposed to wash, in ...
6
votes
2answers
214 views

What is Ruach Rah

Right in the beginning of Shulchan Aruch we see this idea of "Ruach Rah". In regards to washing ones hands and all that comes before that -- not walking more than 4 amos without washing one's hands, ...
6
votes
1answer
194 views

Washing Kohen's Hands

Following kedusha during mussaf on a day when there is birchas kohanim (duchening), the Leviyim and Kohanim assemble at the sink and a Levi washes each Kohen's hands. What procedure of hand-washing ...
6
votes
2answers
946 views

Washing Hands post Funeral

What is the proper way to wash after a Funeral or a visit to the Cemetery?
6
votes
1answer
69 views

Water from hydroelectric plant for netilat yadayim?

The Shulchan Aruch OC 160:2 rules that water with which one has done "melachah," is disqualified from netilat yadayim. Does this include water which has flowed downstream from a hydroelectric plant?
6
votes
1answer
265 views

Kiddush on Bread: When to Wash?

Many (most?) rishonim, with the notable exception of the Rabbeinu Tam, hold that if there is no wine (or if you prefer bread) then you can make kiddush, on Shabbos/Yom Tov evening, with bread. At ...
6
votes
0answers
178 views

Prosthetic limbs in halacha

What is the status of prosthetic limbs in halacha in terms of being considered part of the body? Is it considered: As if I were born with it? As a living piece of flesh, but not a piece of me? ...
5
votes
2answers
176 views

What do you do if there is no Levi or Bechor to wash the Kohain's hands?

What do you do by Duchaning when there is no Levi or Bechor to wash the Kohain's hands?
5
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2answers
155 views

What is a source that allows one to treat one's house as all within four amos?

I am after a source that allows one to treat one's house as all within four amos l'chatchila, with respect to nagel vasser (hand washing in the morning).
5
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1answer
75 views

Mitzva of Netilat Yadaim

Does anybody know what word Netilat exactly means and how it refers to the mitzva of Netilat Yadaim?
5
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2answers
172 views

Wash without saying a bracha and it's not pesach?

Inspired by this SMS Shut Bread without Water Q: I am stuck in a place without water. How can I eat bread? A: In extreme circumstances, one my wrap both hands with plastic bags, or gloves, in ...
5
votes
2answers
125 views

Touching the forearm when putting on Tefilin

If one has touched his forearm while placing the arm-Tefilin (I see that it's a very common case), is he obligated to wash his hands immediately, as he has to say a Beracha on the head-Tefilin? If so, ...
5
votes
2answers
158 views

Washing for bread with bandages covering the hands

If someone has bandages completely covering both hands, what does he do before eating bread? Normally with a bandage covering part of the hard, I've heard that you wash the rest, but in this case ...
5
votes
1answer
33 views

Licking fingers for Mayim Acharonim?

Since saliva is one of the seven "liquids" (a subcategory of water, cf. Machshirin 6:5), would licking or sucking on one's own fingers fulfill the obligation of Mayim Acharonim?
5
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2answers
150 views

Can you use carbonated water for washing?

Inspired by this question but I believe different because its not related to drinking. Can you use carbonated, and even flavored clear water (seltzer) to do things that require water such as washing ...
5
votes
1answer
209 views

Why do the Leviim wash the hands of the Kohanim when they go up to bless the people?

When the Kohanim washed their hands and feet in the Beis HaMikdosh they did not have anyone to help. Why then do the Kohanim need others to wash their hands when they go up to bless the people? Why ...
5
votes
1answer
100 views

Sleeping Tumah Transfers

If someone wakes up and touches another object before washing his/her hands, does that object get some level of tumah as well?
5
votes
3answers
250 views

What are the parameters for washing after excusing one's self in the middle of the meal?

If I recall correctly from Chayei Adam and elsewhere, if you're in the middle of a bread-based meal and excuse yourself to defecate, first of all you should wash with soap and water for hygienic ...
5
votes
2answers
43 views

What if, when the Kohanim washing their hands, less than ten remain?

Before Birkas Kohanim, the Levi'im wash the Kohanim's hands. In many communities, this occurs during the chazzan's repitition of Shemoneh Esrei, and in a room outside the main shul. Normally, there ...
5
votes
1answer
443 views

If I wake up before dawn, do I wash my hands with a blessing?

If one wakes up in the middle of the night or at least before dawn, does he wash and make al netilat yadayim? Also, at what point can one say birkot hashachar? I'd like to wake up extra early to do ...
5
votes
0answers
201 views

Can you fulfill Netilat Yadayim by dipping your hands in a sink?

According to the Gemara in Hullin on 107a, if there's a vessel with a hole in it, and there's a "stream" (more than a drip but not necessarily the "sheffoferet hannod" required for a real mikveh) ...
4
votes
2answers
155 views

Mayim Acharonim with a cup?

(Asked because it seems to have been neglected from the answers to this question.) Is one required to wash Mayim Acharonim from of a cup (or vessel that is kosher for Mayim Rishonim)? Must one use ...
4
votes
1answer
135 views

New Al Netilas Yadayim after washing after Defecating During Meal

Should one make a new bracha of al netilas yadayim upon washing his hands after defecating within a meal?
4
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2answers
63 views

Can you use 1 instance of hand washing for 2 different things?

Can you use one instance of hand washing, say after leaving a beis hakvaros, to cover you for another, say using the bathroom?
4
votes
1answer
91 views

Bakery workers washing Negel Vasser

In my local bakery there are Jewish non religious workers. Is there a concern that perhaps when they are handling the baked goods they have not washed negel Vasser (morning n'tilas yadayim)?
4
votes
2answers
466 views

Washing after Haircut and modern day blood letting

What are the rules for Washing after Haircuts and or Shaving and or is there a requirement at all? Also after donating blood is there a requirment to Wash hands and or a blood test and is there a ...
4
votes
1answer
113 views

Washing hands after touching a gentile corpse

Does one need to wash hands after touching a gentile corpse just as after a Jewish one?
4
votes
1answer
136 views

Excess water after Netillath Yadayim

Is excess water after Netillath Yadayim usable for other purposes? For example, you wash for bread, and you leave water in the cup - can someone use that water, or do they need to empty and refill ...
4
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1answer
232 views

Al Netilas Yadayim in morning and after bathroom

Are you supposed to say the bracha al netilas yadayim after doing negel vasser after waking up or going to the bathroom?
4
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1answer
223 views

What if you forgot to wash?

What should you do if you suddenly realize that you forgot to wash, either upon waking or before eating bread? I assume you should wash at your first opportunity, but is that right? Do you make a ...
4
votes
1answer
177 views

Drying hands after leaving cemetery

I understand that we are supposed to let our hands air-dry after washing them (when leaving a cemetery). Can we blow dry them?