Does anyone have a modern day psak on lightning without thunder colloquially known as "heat lightning"? The Chaye Adam says it's caused by heat and he suggests that maybe is not what the gemara was talking about. We now know that there is no distinction and the sound of the far away thunder either doesn't travel that far and/or it gets refracted upwards before it reaches us. Despite the fact that

  1. there is no distinction
  2. the gemara doesn't make the distinction
  3. the Chaye Adam is not 100% about the distinction

I still see people following the psak of not saying the bracha.


1 Answer 1


The Mishnah Berurah (227:3) quotes the Chayei Odom. However, he also says (227:5) that one should make a brocha right away upon seeing lightning, without waiting for thunder. Apparently, there are cases where one need not suspect that it is because of heat. Maybe when it is cold? or raining?

  • Good point. I see now that I didn't write my question clearly. I was referring specifically to cases were it is "heat lightning".
    – YDK
    Jun 24, 2010 at 20:43
  • @YDK Maybe consider editing?
    – Double AA
    Jun 14, 2012 at 18:46

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