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The Kitzur Shulchan Aruch Siman 10:14 states regarding tefillin that, "Care should be taken that the black side of the straps face outward. If it happens that the straps become inverted around your head or around the muscle of your arm so that the white side faces outward, you must either fast or redeem yourself by giving charity. "

Certainly most hold one should fast if chas veshalom a bayit should fall to the floor. But a twisted strap? Does anyone hold like this today? Does it make a difference that many tefillin straps are now black on both sides?

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You ask:

Does anyone hold like this today?

The Mishna Berura clarifies in 28:11:(38), this refers to the straps being white-side-out only to the section around the head and the first twist around the arm.

The straps hanging down the front and the rest of the strap wound around the arm , hand and finger are excluded from this Minhag of fasting/giving charity if they are white-side-out

לח) ולא יתהפכו - ואם נתהפכו מדת חסידות הוא להתענות או לפדות בצדקה ואין להקפיד שלא יתהפכו אלא מה שמקיף את הראש ואת הקיבורת פ"א אבל מה שכורך אח"כ וכן מה שמשתלשל לפניו מהרצועה של תש"ר אין צריך להקפיד כלל שלא יתהפך לפי שאינו מעיקר המצוה ומ"מ משום נוי המצוה ראוי להפוך שיהיה השחור לצד חוץ אפילו בהמותר:‏

I don't see anybody arguing that it doesn't apply.


You ask:

Does it make a difference that many tefillin straps are now black on both sides?

Yes. See the Mishna Berura in 33:4:(24) where he suggests that if a non-Jew painted the straps, one could paint the other side and show that side up until one finds better straps.

כד) פסול - כתב המ"א דאם חזר ישראל והשחירן לשמן כשר והביא ראיה לזה והפמ"ג ושארי אחרונים השיגו על ראיתו ונשארו בדין זה בצ"ע ונתן הפמ"ג לזה עצה אחרת שישחיר בצד השני של הרצועות לשמן דאף שהושחרו משני צדדים כשר כמבואר בס"ג ויהפך הצד שהושחר לשמן למעלה וכ"ז הוא אם אין לו רצועות אחרות וכמו שביארנו בבה"ל:‏

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    The OP already knew this "the straps become inverted around your head or around the muscle of your arm" – Double AA Nov 14 at 14:06
  • I don't understand your second point. Perhaps whenever the straps are twisted it's a problem, even when both sides are black lishmah. Presumably the Peri Megadim was also suggesting rethreading the straps so that the lishmah side was outward facing. – magicker72 Nov 14 at 15:22
  • @Danny I appreciate your taking the time to answer my question but all your first point does is restate my question. Your second point, on the other hand, is exactly the information I was looking for. Thank you! – Josh K Nov 14 at 17:28
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    @JoshK - my point was (not to repeat your Q, but) to highlight how rare this is, hence it's possible nobody knows how people behave when it happens. After all one doesn't have to declare one is fasting (one actually SHOULDN'T declare one is fasting) nor does one have to give charity publically. – Danny Schoemann Nov 17 at 10:00

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