Situations in which a life is threatened; most (though not all), Jewish laws are suspended in order to save a life.

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41 views

Does a dead man walking get saved on Shobbos?

There's a man who's חייב מיתה by the kingdom. He's in jail waiting to be executed when he slips and falls and bashes his head on Shobbos. There a guards that could save him. Do the guards have to ...
7
votes
1answer
169 views

Is sky-diving forbidden because of the risk to one's life?

Is sky-diving forbidden since it might be considered a risk to once life and is not a necessary activity (like e.g., driving a car would be)? The Torah says (Dvarim 4:15) "guard your souls" and ...
0
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0answers
47 views

Is it permissible to travel to a 'dangerous' place, if so, what is the shiur?

There is a mitzvah to guard your soul diligently. I am pretty sure this is applied to guarding your physical body from injury. My question is, may one travel to a place that others may consider ...
2
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2answers
192 views

Should one living in Israel leave?

The Torah commands us, ‘Venishmartem meod lenafshotechem' ['You shall take care exceedingly of your lives' — Deut. 4:15). It seems anyone living in Israel is in grave danger due to the recent ...
25
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2answers
323 views

Rockets from Gaza while praying

I live in Beer Sheva, Israel where there are presently ongoing rockets fired at us from Gaza. We are warned of an impending rocket by a loud siren that gives us less than a minute to run to a bomb ...
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2answers
126 views

Driving in a Blizzard after Shabbat Begins

Someone is driving and stuck in a blizzard on the highway when Shabbat begins. It would most likely be life threatening to leave the car on the side of the highway and walk in a blinding blizzard. ...
5
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1answer
69 views

What should I do if I don't know whether I'm in a pikuach nefesh situation?

Suppose I find myself in a situation where I am not sure whether my life is sufficiently in danger to warrant halachot of pikuach nefesh to come into play. What should I do in this case? Am I supposed ...
3
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3answers
193 views

Is it a mitzvah to save someone from execution by Beth Din?

I am wondering how the laws of pikuach nefesh might apply to a situation of mitath beth din. Would bystanders be obliged to save the condemned from his lawful execution? What about members of the beth ...
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1answer
264 views

Breaking Shabbos to keep future Shabbos(os)?

The reason we allow someone to violate shabbos to save a life is because of the principle "let him void one shabbat so that many future shabbosos will be kept". What are the parameters for this ...
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4answers
1k views

If my home is on fire on Shabbos or Yom Tov, what can I do?

G-d forbid, but let's say that my house catches fire either on Shabbos or a Yom Tov. Can I call 911 or must I find a non-Jewish neighbor to call? We have an eruv. Can I take my car keys, cell phone ...
6
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2answers
282 views

At what cost must one perform a mitzvah?

To what lengths must one go to fulfill a positive commandment, or avoid transgressing a negative one? Obviously, with few exceptions, one must not go so far as to die in order to fulfill a ...
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148 views

Is one allowed to carry a gun for self-defense if local secular law prohibits it?

There is a rule of Dina D'Malchuta Dina - the law of the land is valid, providing that it does not conflict directly with Torah laws. There is a Torah law of Venishmartem lenafshotechem (Devarim ...
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0answers
69 views

Can a Jew tell a Gentile to fix his ambulance on Shabbat?

I Understand that a Jew is not allowed to ask a Gentile to do work for him specifically on Shabbat. Thus, one cannot bring a car to the Gentile mechanic on Friday and tell him specifically, "Fix my ...
5
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1answer
81 views

Shaas hashmad and Arab terrorism

There is a halachik principle brought down in the Talmud and codified in halacha known as shaat hashmad - a time of forced religious persecution. Generally, the rule is that any commandment of the ...
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1answer
91 views

Can I donate blood on yom tov?

The next blood donation clinic at my university is on Rosh Hashana and not for particular recipients. Would donating blood be halachically sound? I don't think I could anyway because of all the ...
8
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1answer
86 views

Performing a C-section in the Time of Chazal

The Mishna (Bekhorot 8:2) refers to two children born to the same mother, the first by C-section and the second by regular delivery. The Rambam famously comments that it seems exceedingly strange to ...
3
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2answers
140 views

Is an on-call doctor allowed to read non-emergency text messages on Shabbat?

My shul has a few doctors who carry their cell phones with them. When their phones buzz (B"H, they are smart enough to put the phones on vibrate mode while davening.) with a text message, they, of ...
5
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2answers
143 views

Halachic issues with using a frozen river as a mikvah

One hears a lot of legends about women who went to extraordinary lengths to go to mikvah in difficult times. One popular story is about a woman who would make a hole in a frozen river and tovel in the ...
5
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3answers
157 views

Is “pikuach nefesh” on shabbos “hutrah” or “dichuya”?

Whenever two mitzvos come into conflict with each other, and one is given precedence over the other (such as in the case of מילה on Shabbos, or any עשה דוחה לא תעשה), there is usually discussion over ...
7
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1answer
105 views

Making a bracha on food which is normally assur, but allowed due to pikuach nefesh

In general, one eating forbidden food does not make a bracha. In certain cases, foods which are usually assur are allowed to be eaten out of a concern of pikuach nefesh -- danger to life. For ...
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1answer
104 views

Marital relations if pregnancy is potentially life-threatening?

A while ago, I was poking around the Catholic section of Reddit, since I was curious about how the topic of birth control might be handled within it. In a comment to one post, someone stated that his ...
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1answer
128 views

Is there any obligation for a Jew to save a gentile's life?

Does "al taamod al dam rei'echa" refer to only Jews? Does anyone interpret it as meaning a gentile (who is not an idoloter)?
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1answer
213 views

Water left unopened

According to this article from the Kof-K one is obligated in covering water bottles, but we dont practice today as snakes are not common, but what if i lived in a desert like city, like Phoenix ...
7
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1answer
348 views

How to check blood sugar on Shabbos

Diabetes is a חולי שיש בו סכנה, an illness that poses a danger to life1. As such, everything necessary for caring for diabetes must be done on Shabbos, even if it includes איסורי תורה. (see Shulchan ...
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0answers
433 views

How hungry does a Jew have to be to eat non-kosher food?

I understand that Jews are allowed to eat non-kosher food in order to save their lives. My question is, how long does a Jew have to be deprived of food, before he or she is allowed to eat non-kosher ...
3
votes
1answer
59 views

May one say a prayer while driving?

In the vein of this question How to say Tefilas HaDerech while on the road alone -- I am wondering whether it is appropriate to say a prayer or make a brocha while concurrently operating a car. ...
5
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2answers
954 views

Mosaic Law and ISIS

Recently I had a conversation about ISIS with a friend who is Catholic by faith, he said that ISIS should be stopped but that we (The US or any other foreign power) should not kill them, whereas I ...
4
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1answer
183 views

How to say Tefilas HaDerech while on the road alone

My question applies to circumstances in which one is driving an extended distance by oneself. They also apply primarily--though not exclusively--to people who do not have the Tefilos HaDerech ...
4
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1answer
67 views

Who first said “You're being machmir on pikuach nefesh”?

I've been hearing the phrase "This is not being meikil1 on Shabbos, this is being machmir2 on pikuach nefesh3" for a long time. I've heard it quoted from R' Chaim, from the Gra, and from various and ...
3
votes
1answer
78 views

What are the opinions on carrying medicine/medical devices on Shabbat?

Specifically, I'm curious about situations where it's not immediately apparent that it'll be necessary. For example: you don't know whether or not you'll need an epipen when you leave the house, but ...
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2answers
122 views

Is it permissible to live in California (or similar places) that have an earthquake risk?

I'm from a place that usually never gets an earthquake, I want to move to California but it sounds dangerous because of the earthquake possibility (soil turning to liquid, no warning, etc)... Is ...
12
votes
4answers
1k views

Why is a woman allowed to get pregnant?

This should be taken as a bit of a light hearted question (but not a Purim Torah by any means, I am looking for a real analysis), inspired by a discussion in chat. Why is a woman allowed to get ...
4
votes
3answers
72 views

Saving an innocent person from being wrongly executed by a Beis Din

There is already a question on this site asking about saving a person from being executed (fairly) by a beis din, as well as a question regarding the criminal himself, if he may/must attempt to save ...
11
votes
1answer
256 views

Can I choose not to violate Shabbos for “pikuach nefesh”?

According to the Gemara (Yoma 85a-b) and Poskim (Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 328, Rambam, Hilchot Shabbos 2 [English Rambam]), one is allowed to violate Shabbos in order to preserve his life. This is ...
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0answers
34 views

Is it mutar to kill a gentile to save one's life? [duplicate]

I know that it is forbidden to kill another Jew to save your own life, as it says in Sanhedrin 74. Does this law extend to a gentile?
9
votes
2answers
856 views

Self-defense in a street fight?

I was in a situation where someone basically approached me indicating he was going to fight me, squared up with me, stared me down etc. pushed me twice, and then I thought to myself, "If he raises a ...
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0answers
22 views

Where can I find “Mishnas Pikuach Nefesh”?

Not sure if this kind of question is allowed on here. I've been looking for a specific sefer for a long time and I cannot find any seforim store that has it or that has even heard of it. The sefer I ...
7
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1answer
97 views

Pikuach Nefesh and different levels of Halacha

Here's a theoretical: if someone has to save a life and has two equally easy options, both of which violate halacha, one d'oraita and one d'rabbanan. Should he choose the d'oraita or the d'rabbanan?
10
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1answer
218 views

Is Chayecha Kodmin a Chiyuv or a right

If one is presented with a case of either save himself or his friend, he is permitted to save himself. Does he have to? I saw this thread which set my mind going, are the usual airplane guidelines ...
8
votes
1answer
181 views

Is a person endangering others always* a Rodef?

Does a person endangering others inherently* have a Din of a Rodef? Related: Is a speeding driver who causes damage exempt from paying due to his status as a Roidef? *Leave aside for purposes of the ...
23
votes
2answers
450 views

Is it a mitzva to escape the death penalty?

If someone is being led to his death by bes din (a Jewish court), is he supposed to try to escape, since, in general, saving one's own life is paramount? More: normally, we say that if someone is out ...
6
votes
1answer
446 views

Medical treatment for pregnant woman that jeopardises pregnancy

I ran into an article about a woman who died shortly after refusing cancer treatment in order to be able to carry out her pregnancy. This isn't an uncommon scenario — I can think of at least three ...
4
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1answer
148 views

Violating Shabbos for a suicide emergency

Y'all should know by now that we violate Shabbos to preserve human life. If you're still not sure, see Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 328, Rambam, Hilchot Shabbos 2 (English), and a few other sources ...
6
votes
1answer
461 views

Buying non-Kosher food for home Emergency Kits

The United States federal government, American Red Cross, and surely countless other governments and NGOs recommend that families have Emergency Survival Kits in their homes in case of a natural or ...
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3answers
866 views

Returning after driving someone to the hospital on Shabbat

If a man needs to be brought to the hospital on Shabbat due to a life threatening situation, another man may bring him there even by violating biblical Shabbat prohibitions (e.g. driving a car). Which ...
9
votes
1answer
259 views

Killing gentile under threat of death

If someone points a gun at Reuvein's head and tells him, "Kill this Jew or I'll kill you," the halachah is that Reuvein must let himself be killed. What if someone points a gun at Reuvein's head and ...
15
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2answers
249 views

What is the status of a Kli Shemelachto LeIssur that's only used for Pikuach Nefesh?

What is the status of a kli (object) whose primary use would be forbidden on Shabbos, but it is only used in a case of Pikuach Nefesh (danger to life, where all Shabbos restrictions become allowed) -- ...
8
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2answers
191 views

Is it permissible to be mechalel shabbos to save a fetus?

Is it muttar to set aside the rules of shabbos to save a fetus? If so, how is it possible to reconcile that with the permissibility of killing a fetus (abortion)?
2
votes
1answer
262 views

Taking a pill on Yom Kippur

What factors go into determining the permissibility of taking a pill on Yom Kippur when there is no chance the patient will die if they fail to take the pill for 25 hours? The case here is not one of ...
5
votes
2answers
170 views

May a surgeon who needs to do surgery on Shabbat correct the time on his watch?

According to the various sources mentioned in this article one is not allowed to set a stopped watch on Shabbat. Suppose that a surgeon is scheduled to operate on a patient on Shabbat afternoon. ...