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I have heard that Rav Moshe Feinstein ztsl held that tzitzis should be tucked in. Can somebody give a nice summary of the reasons behind his ruling?

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  • More general question: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/1797
    – msh210
    Commented Mar 17, 2014 at 19:50
  • interesting question. although this doesn't directly answer your question this is one thought I had on the matter... one point of view was that the Arizal felt one should wear the talis katan under your shirt and keep the tzitzis also tucked in. on the other hand the Arizal would regularly wear his talis gadol as a regular garment. since today it is uncommon for us to wear the regular talis as clothing many people compromise by keeping the beged under a shirt but the tzitzis visible.
    – Dude
    Commented Jun 6, 2014 at 17:31
  • Is not the purpose of tzitzit for one to gaze upon them to be reminded of the mitzvot? How can one see them if they're tucked in?
    – Ephraim77
    Commented Jun 24, 2022 at 18:30

5 Answers 5

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Rav Ahron Felder zt"l was a talmid muvhak and spent many years serving Rav Moshe Feinstein. Among the seforim he authored is the two-volume Rishumei Aaron, which contains rulings and halachic opinions from Rav Moshe that are not found anywhere else.

In Volume II O"C Siman 8 He states that Reb Moshe held there is no obligation to wear ones tzitis out so that they are constantly visible.

Rishumei Ahron (http://www.5tjt.com/rav-aharon-felder-ztl-a-review-of-some-of-his-works/)

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  • +1 although it would be great to see what lead him to this conclusion. Commented Jun 18, 2021 at 6:45
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My father, Rav Yitzchok Frankel, Rav of Aguda of 5 Towns, and Talmud muvhak of Rav Moshe, asked rav Moshe personally about this topic in late 1963, early 1964. Rav Moshe told him to wear his tzitzis tucked IN. My father opened Mishnah Berurah 8:26 to ask why Rav Moshe argues. Rav Moshe told him the Mishnah Berurah 8:26 is commenting in response to the Mechaber (se'if 11) that "the main mitzva is ON TOP of the beged..." to which Mishnah Berurah 8:26 clarifies that it is a great disgrace to wear the beged OUT and the strings IN. We however (Rav Moshe explained) who wear the beged under our shirt, (like the mikubalim), we wear the strings in as well.

Actually, at the very end of his life Rav moshe wore his beged on top of his shirt, and the strings out, and he kept his frock unbuttoned. His family did not like it because it looked sloppy.

P.S. My father asked Rav Zaks (the Chafetz Chaim's grandson, rosh yeshiva in Y.U.) how the Chafetz Chayim wore his tzitzis. Rav Zaks said "we never knew because my grandfather NEVER unbuttoned his frock, even indoors with the family". According to the simple understanding of Mishnah Berurah 8:26 this would have been a violation of "U'reisem Oso" ... it sounds crazy to us Americans, but the Chafetz Chayim should have cut little tzitzis holes, or at least worn his frock open. According to what Rav Moshe told my father, there is no question at all.

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  • Rav Zaks was the CC son-in-law
    – sam
    Commented Jun 24, 2022 at 19:17
  • Welcome to MiYodeya Shimon and thanks for this first answer. Great to have you learn with us!
    – mbloch
    Commented Jun 25, 2022 at 18:14
  • Was Rav Zaks of Y.U. his son in law?
    – Shimon
    Commented Jul 24, 2022 at 4:16
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    @Shimon "His family did not like it because it looked sloppy." you heard this directly from family ? do they now why he wore it that way at the end of his life ? and if he replied something on the fact that it would looked "sloppy" ?
    – Frank
    Commented Jul 24, 2022 at 16:28
  • Here's some more info from Rav Hershel Schachter shlit"a: mywesternwall.net/2018/11/04/…
    – N.T.
    Commented Aug 25, 2022 at 9:29
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I had discussed this once with Rav Reuven Feinstein and he had showed me the source, although my notes only say Magen Avraham 8:13. M"A mentions there that even though the talis katan is under his clothing and therefore not readily seen if torn, one does not have to remove them on Shabbos because of kavod habriyos. If the strings were to be worn out, this explanation would not work. I also recall further proof from the halacha of not wearing tzitzis out in cemeteries, but I can't recall the specifics at this time. I will try to ask again soon. Regarding the dress style, I do recall him telling me that if one was wearing a shirt untucked it would be OK to wear the strings out.

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I have heard from both my grandfather and a talmid of my great grandfather Harav Chaim Ephraim Zaitchyk (a prominent rosh yeshiva in Europe and after the war an author of 33 mussar seforim), that when he was meshamesh the Chofetz Chayim, he saw that the Chofetz Chaim tucked his tzizis in. I do recall the idea that the Chofetz Chaim in Mishna Berura writes that at a cemetery regarding of whether wearing tzizis is an affront to the dead (as it mentions in the gemara in brochos not to do mitzvos in front of the dead because they no longer have the oppurtunity) that it is not because it is under his frock (or something to that idea) implying that we wear our tzizis inside our clothes. I heard from the talmid of my great grandfather, that it must be that whoever completed the Mishna Berura wrote these halachos.

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    But Hilchos tzitzis is in the first chelek
    – sam
    Commented Jun 6, 2014 at 1:59
  • I'm not sure that the ruling regarding cemeteries would explain why Rav Moshe or the Chafetz Chaim would hold that one should tuck in tzitzis, generally. Commented Jun 6, 2014 at 17:42
  • @sam see here he.wikipedia.org/wiki/… Commented Jun 18, 2021 at 2:11
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I have heard from my Rebbe that Rav Moshe said that it was unsightly to wear the tzitzis untucked and dangling out from your pants, and as a ben torah you should appear proper and put-together to the outside world as you represent Torah.

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  • Interesting. See judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/1797/… and the accepted answer. Note the words, "Mishnah Berurah (8:26) goes further, and sharply condemns those who wear their tzitzis tucked into their pants." I find it surprising that Rabbi M Feinstein ztz"l contradicted the Chofetz Chayim. Commented Mar 18, 2014 at 17:11
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    @AvrohomYitzchok There were plenty of things on which R' Moshe decided differently than the Chofetz Chayim. He wasn't a Tanna. Commented Mar 18, 2014 at 18:30
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    Does that mean not hanging out (untucked shirt, hanging loose), or not showing at all?
    – Yishai
    Commented Mar 18, 2014 at 18:35
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    Would you mind editing your rabbi's name into your answer?
    – msh210
    Commented Mar 19, 2014 at 2:56
  • Is this documented anywhere?
    – MTL
    Commented May 29, 2014 at 17:00

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