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As the title says, I'm wondering if its possible for a new minhag to become instituted almost like a law by the leading authorities of a community or whether all minhagim have to organically develop over time and simply become accepted like something that's simply "in the air" for the community. Basically, can a leader or a group of leaders get together and just come up with a new custom as long as it doesn't contradict anything in the Torah, tell everyone to follow it like a "law" so that the entire community thus decides to follow something (or its leaders 'force' it)? Would this contradict the law in the Torah that one may not add any new laws?

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  • judaism.stackexchange.com/a/18362/1362
    – rosends
    Jul 16, 2023 at 17:34
  • @rosends Thank you. Of course, it still doesn't exactly answer whether its possible for someone to literally formally institute a new custom that becomes binding as the Rabbi in the reply you posted simply started doing something and others copied him, which would fall into the latter category that I described (that of organically developed customs). It would be different if the Rabbis got together and said "we dont like this X thing" and then they all said "Ok, we will not do it that way anymore as a custom", and everyone follows that. I appreciate the link though, it was interesting.
    – setszu
    Jul 16, 2023 at 17:39
  • One issue with the question is the possible meanings/levels of "minhag." Some are family practices, some are almost at the level of instituted law. They would have different sources.
    – rosends
    Jul 16, 2023 at 17:42
  • @rosends Oh my bad, I didn't know there were different levels of "minhag". For this, I think I mean a minhag that is binding on an entire Jewish community in a certain town or neighbourhood, or just a synagogue community (minhag started by Rabbis/leaders of the community also). Certainly not at a level of family practice. But I'm not sure how to edit my question to clarify this since I'm not exactly aware of different levels of customs.
    – setszu
    Jul 16, 2023 at 17:44
  • Here is some writing I have done exploring the question rosends.blogspot.com/2017/04/… and rosends.blogspot.com/2017/05/… look at the comments for the second one for a link with more info
    – rosends
    Jul 16, 2023 at 18:25

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