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Is there an appropriate bracha that one makes before digesting food for thought?

Would one have to think about the text, and keep it in mind or would one say the bracha and speak his mind?


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closed as off-topic by msh210 Mar 23 at 22:42

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4

The Talmud in Ketubot 46a states:

אל יהרהר אדם ביום

A person must not think during the day.

In Y.D. 246:23 the Shulchan Aruch codifies the following rule:

יזהר בכל לילותיו ולא יאבד אפי' אחת מהן בשינה באכילה ושתיה ושיחה וכיוצא בהם אלא בדברי חכמה ותלמוד תורה

One must be careful with all his nights and not waste even one of them with sleeping, with eating and drinking, and the like. Rather, [one must only spend them] with words of wisdom and study of Torah.

So now we see that thinking is prohibited at night as well. And as codified in Shulchan Aruch (O.C. 196:1), no blessings are made on things that are forbidden:

אכל דבר איסור אף על פי שאינו אסור אלא מדרבנן אין מזמנין עליו ואין מברכין עליו לא בתחלה ולא בסוף

And if you were to object and say that one could still think Torah thoughts at night, and therefore the question about blessings could still arise, we need only look elsewhere in the Shulchan Aruch (O.C. 47:4) which explicitly states that no blessing is necessary for thoughts of Torah:

המהרהר בדברי תורה א"צ לברך

  • I'm not following why you say thinking is prohibited at night. The S.A. you cited doesn't seem to say that. – Daniel Mar 17 at 20:13
  • @Daniel It falls under not wasting the night with anything but words of wisdom and study of Torah. – Alex Mar 17 at 20:16
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You cannot ingest thoughts; they are passing things that provide no sustenance. We can learn this from the laws of teshuva; it is not enough to merely think that you did wrong, but you must also take actions to right that wrong. If thoughts could act, they could also nourish.

Therefore, the b'racha for partaking of thoughts is besamim. Be careful to use this only when partaking of pleasant thoughts, though, just as we do not make a b'racha over taking in a stench or eating something disgusting.

1

Of course we say a b'racha before consuming thought! (35a)

Unless, as @Calm Nice Olio raised, it is hard to swallow and therefore unpleasant, like oil, which has no b'racha.

And why not say a b'racha? What risk is involved? Only that it turn out to be a b'racha l'vatala, but that cannot happen because (Orot Hakodesh 1:13)

יודעים אנו שאין שום מחשבה בטלה בעולם כלל

we know that there is absolutely no batala thought in the world.

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The proper bracha is said 3 times on weekdays. It's חונן הדעת.

Here's why you need good knowledge before you ever just speak your mind after people request your opinion and you offer them "food for thought."

They want a penny for your thoughts. But you offer them your two cents! So that means, you lose a penny for each offering. Not only do your recipients fill up on your food offerings but you're losing a lot of money on this.

The only time you should be speaking his mind is when you can make a profit on this by getting someone else to debate what you say and offer you at least twice as much as you offer them. It's not easy to detect these situations, esp. in a large crowd, because you don't know who is calculating things the same way you are and not offering anything or who will offer smart advice but is too dumb to realize that he too is losing money.

So you need G-d to give you loads of knowledge to know when speaking your mind is worth losing the penny, because if you don't watch it, you'll be bankrupt quickly.

Well, I lost my penny, telling you all this, so, I'll stop right now...

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I suppose it would depend on whether the food for thought is larger or smaller than an olive......

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