Inspired by this comment, there are Chazaka's (presumptions) and principles of נאמנות (trustworthiness) in Halacha that no longer hold in our practical experience.

One example is עד אחד נאמנן באיסורים. As linked there, if someone isn't under suspicion (and it is an aveira to be חשד בכשרים) their statements about their Kashrus should be believed. On the other hand, centuries* of practical experience has shown us that when someone has a financial incentive there is not an insignificant chance that they will lie (e.g.) especially when the financial stakes are high. Also, I have seen a lot of just downright ignorance in believing something to be Kosher, and perhaps claims of something being Kosher based more on a failure to do due diligence rather than real dishonesty.

Another is example is חזקה אין אדם מעיז פניו בפני בעל חובו, where anyone involved in a Beis Din cases that I have spoken with says that the bald face lying in front of a creditor is rampant. Although this particular one is a bit different, as it functions to makes us more suspicious of the borrower, not less (perhaps his credible sounding claims are lies because he doesn't want to lie all the way, even if he is inclined to lie), so it is hard to apply an observation that borrowers are more dishonest to establish their credibility.

So how do we approach this observation in differences between the framework of Halacha and our present day observations?

*A very big Talmid Chacham involved in Kashrus told me that there were takkanos in Europe going back a couple of hundred years at least to require retail food sellers to have certification because of this problem.


1 Answer 1


There is at least one example where we do not follow these identified chazakos. R' Rakeffet talks about this in his shiurim on Civil Marriage... Look at this shiur: http://www.yutorah.org/lectures/lecture.cfm/709440/Rabbi_Aaron_Rakeffet-Rothkoff/1995-09-17_Ain_adam_oseh_be'ilato_be'ilat_zenut__17-Sep-95

  • 1
    Welcome to Mi Yodeya. A better answer would summarize the lecture for those of us who don't have the time to sit through it all. Commented Dec 20, 2013 at 18:12
  • The mekoros that R' Rakeffet brought don't say we do not follow the chazaka of אין אדם עושה בעילתו בעילת זנות. Rather, the cited Rashba and Rambam narrowly define the parameters of that chazaka (as opposed to some of the Geonim who apply it more broadly). They say that chazaka was never meant to apply except in a case of a man with his divorced wife, a man who was m'kadeish a woman conditionally, or some similar case where there is specific reason to expect that אין אדם עושה בעילתו בעילת זנות.
    – Fred
    Commented Dec 27, 2022 at 19:24

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .