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17

Kitzur Shulachan Aruch 10:1 says וכל הזהיר במצוות תפילין, לנהוג בהם קדושה, שלא לדבר בהם דברי הבלים ושיחת חולין, מאריך ימים ומובטח שהוא בן עולם הבא, שנאמר: "ה' עליהם" (שנושאין עליהם שם ה' בתפילין) – יחיו, ולכל בהן חיי רוחי, ותחלימני והחייני" And anyone who is careful with the Commandment of tefilin, to behave with them in holiness, not to speak, ...


15

The Lubavitcher Rebbe zt"l addressed these and some related issues in a sicha (public address) of his on Shabbos Bereishis 5728/1967 (not long after he started the "Tefillin Campaign" in the weeks before the Six-Day War). The relevant portions are printed in Likkutei Sichos, vol. 6, pp. 271ff (available on Hebrewbooks here and following pages). Your two ...


15

The part of the arm that matters when counting the number of loops around the arm is from the elbow to the wrist. The Chabad custom is to wrap the straps so that there are 6 complete loops and 2 half loops. This equals 7 complete loops, but may look like one is wrapping 8 loops. As you can see from this picture from Chabad.org's article about Tefillin, the ...


15

The Talmud (Arachin 3b) informs us that the Kohanim were exempt from wearing the Tefillah shel Yad while servicing in the Temple because it would constitute a separation between the priestly garments and the skin. The Tefillah shel Rosh could still be worn, and the priestly garments on the head were worn in such a way as to leave room in the front for the ...


14

As part of the extensive research behind my RASHI'S DAUGHTERS, no subject intrigued me more than the elusive [and ubiquitous] legend that they wore tefillin. Indeed, when I first started studying Talmud and was introduced to Rashi, I was told that legend held that they were learned and wore tefillin. I actually tracked the earliest mention of this back to ...


13

It is prohibited to put on tefillin on Shabbos and Yom tov, since tefillin are called אות (Shemos 13:9), and so is Shabbos (Shemos 31:17). Thus, donning tefillin is disrespect (זלזול) to the אות of Shabbos. (Shulchan Aruch, OC 31:1) There is discussion amongst the poskim if, because tefillin are assur to wear, they should fall into the category of k'li ...


13

A non-Jew certainly may wear tefillin (in other words, there is no law against them doing so), but they will not be fulfilling a mitzvah. From that perspective, they might be viewed in the same way that one views a Jewish woman who lays tefillin: the Shulchan Arukh (Orach Chaim 38:3) exempts her but allows her to wear them if she wishes. Note, however, that ...


12

R' Moshe himself apparently used Beis Yosef kesav. In his letter to the Lubavitcher Rebbe about Rabbeinu Tam's tefillin (Igros Moshe, vol. 6, no. 9), at the end, R' Moshe asks that the sofer whom the Rebbe charged with writing him a pair of R"T tefillin (I have heard orally that this was R' Eliezer Zirkind) should do so using Beis Yosef script, so that it ...


12

Rabenu Tam (as cited in paragraph 6 of the Rosh's laws of sefer Tora) holds that ink made of gallnuts (which we use even in 'his' t'filin) is no good. Also, Rabenu Tam (as cited in Tosafos to M'nachos 33:1 s.v. "Ha daavida") holds the parchments must be lying flat in their case, and we put them upright (per SA OC 32:45), and even in 'his' t'filin.


12

The Gemara states this (and the reasoning behind it) explicitly on Menachot 36a: תנא כשהוא מניח מניח של יד ואחר כך מניח של ראש וכשהוא חולץ חולץ של ראש ואחר כך חולץ של יד בשלמא כשהוא מניח מניח של יד ואח"כ מניח של ראש דכתיב וקשרתם לאות על ידך והדר והיו לטוטפת בין עיניך אלא כשהוא חולץ חולץ של ראש ואח"כ חולץ של יד מנלן אמר רבה רב הונא אסברא לי אמר קרא והיו ...


11

From my research, it seems Jake is correct. I looked into this inyin a couple years ago when helping write a Bar Mitzvah pshetl on the subject of the Shel Yad being covered and the Shel Rosh being uncovered. At the time I heard from both my Rov as well as from a Sofer (who is also a Talmud Chochom) that the requirement to cover the Shel Yad (as WAF ...


11

The Mishna in Menachot 4:1 states: תפלה של יד אינה מעכבת של ראש ושל ראש אינה מעכבת של יד The hand Tefillah does not prevent the head Tefillah, nor does the head Tefillah prevent the hand Tefillah. So you definitely still wear the head Tefillah no matter what happens to your arms. The Mishna Berura writes (OC 27 sk 1) that if one put tefillin on ...


11

According to this article by Rabbi Dr. Ari Z. Zivotofsky (published in the Orthodox Union's Jewish Action Journal, Summer 2011), such a source does not exist. Apparently, this idea appeared in the late 20th century, and never before then.


10

The Kitzur Shulchan Aruch in 10:24 clearly says that once a kid is old enough to behave respectfully while wearing Tefillin, his father has to buy him a set. This is actually based on a Gemoro in Suka 42a. ת''ר קטן היודע לנענע חייב בלולב להתעטף חייב בציצית לשמור תפילין אביו לוקח לו תפילין יודע לדבר אביו לומדו תורה וק''ש A child old enough to ...


10

I am a Sofer Stam and I can tell you that although there is an inyan in Kabbalah to cover the tefillin shel yad, that is not the reason for the plastic cover. It is to protect the corners of the bayit from getting worn down from years of rubbing against your clothing. In places where there is Birchat Cohanim every day, some Cohanim put a similar cover on ...


10

Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim 27:11 says that the straps should be at least the width of a grain of barley. The Halacha Berura says that this amounts to 1 cm, or 2/5th of an inch, but one should preferably ensure that the Tefillin be at least 1.1 cm, or .44 inches, wide.


10

I wrap it seven times, but have been told I wrap it eight times because people count differently than I. That is, from the elbow, I wrap it half a time, seven full times, and whatever's necessary to bring it around again (i.e., another half). So it's seven, see? No, really. Seven. Count 'em. No, count 'em this way. :-) As to why I put the extra halves, I ...


10

The Rama rules (OC 27:4 based on Teshuvat HaRashba 1:827) that there is only a problem of a chatzitza (separation between the tefillin and the skin) under the boxes not the straps. The Mishna Berura there (sk 16) notes that most later authorities only accept this for the parts of the straps that do not directly relate to the tying (ie. the parts between the ...


10

Yes, there are standard sizes, though obviously there are usually going to slight variations in fit for every pair of handmade tefilin. The sizes seem to be measured by cm2 millimeters. Based on my experience they tend to err towards a looser fit; I usually adjust this by adding a sticker or a piece of paper on the inside. This piece is sometimes called a ...


9

For the uninitiated I would start with Rav Yosef Karo's explanation for the placement of t'filin: One goes next to the brain to represent one's intellectual recognition and obedience of God and one goes next to the heart to represent one's emotional recognition and obedience of God. (Source - Orach Chayim 25:5)


9

Michal the daughter of Shaul HaMelech wore Tefilin (Eruvin 96a) לפי תלמוד בבלי מסכת עירובין צו. מיכל בת שאול הניחה תפלין. האר"י מסביר זאת בכך שהייתה לה נשמה מעלמא דדכורא = נשמה מעולם הזכרים


9

You are not allowed to. This is because the two opinions mutually invalidate one another and therefore you would be taking Kosher Tefillin and making it not Kosher according to Rabbeinu Tam. This is considered to be Mezalzel in the shita of Rabbeinu Tam. See the Ridvaz Chelek-6 Siman 2286.


9

The Tefillin of Rabbenu Tam were written by R' Zirkind, at the special request of R' Moshe. These tefillin were checked by my rebbe, Rabbi Shmuel Schneid, who told me that the tefillin were written in typical Russian Beis Yosef script. As any sofer experienced with Sifre Torah of the world will tell you, before 1948, each country and Edah had their unique ...


9

I don't know whether he personally did, but he does mention this custom in his siddur, and gives the Zohar as the source. (It states that the seated part of davening corresponds to the shel yad, and the standing part - primarily Shemoneh Esrei, I guess - to the shel rosh.) Dayan Raskin, in his notes to the siddur there, has an extensive discussion of this ...


9

The Shulchan Aruch (OC 40:8) rules that אכילת עראי temporary eating is permitted while wearing Tefillin. Drinking water would seem to fall in this category.


8

The Torah speaks in allegory. Rambam in Moreh Nevuchim


8

The Mechaber (OC 37:3) states that one buys Tefillin for his son once he is mature enough to care properly for them. However, Rama rules there (from the Ittur) that this is only when the son is age 13, and that one should not deviate from this practice. Mishnah Berurah (10) explains that before 13 one should not allow the boy to wear Tefillin, because he ...


8

This is a case where the universal custom is according to the Arizal. In Halacha, the Mitzvah of Tefillin shel yad is to bind it to the bicep and then wrap around the fingers three times. The three fingers do not invalidate the binding though. Therefore, according to halacha, one would put the Yad and immediately put the Rosh and only afterwards wrap ...


8

Keset HaSofer 21:14 rules that you can't put ground ivory into the tefillin paint as it is not from a kosher animal (an elephant). Accordingly, it would seem that one would need to make sure to use paint that has a certification ensuring that all ingredients are from kosher species.


8

It is a halacha l'Moshe miSinai that the r'tzu'os must be black (M'nachos 35a), and this is a requirement for valid t'fillin. The straps must be re-blackened if the paint becomes scratched or abraded (Bach OC 32:25). Abrasions are especially common (if not readily noticeable) in the vicinity of the knot of the shel yad, and special attention should be paid ...



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