1) Rav Elyashiv zt”l stated in 2009, Halacha forbids going onto Har HaBayis but today, it is more than this, it is an act that may lead to a religious war and bloodshed."

Where in halacha does it say that going onto the Har HaBayis is forbidden?

2) Rav Kanievsky wrote that, “Entrance to the Temple Mount and the defilement of the Holy of Holies, is more severe than any of the violations in the Torah.”

Is there any halachic source for this?

3) Rav Dovid Yosef says, “… One who davens there his tefilos are to’eva (an abomination) to Hashem are not welcomed but blasphemous and one who is guilty of this commits a major avreira.”

Is there any halachic source for this?

  • Are you asking where halacha says the thing about walking onto הר הבית, or are you asking about where halacha says the thing about "religious war"? ....I don't think that Rav Elyashiv meant to say that halacha says anything about the politics of today.
    – MTL
    Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 5:19
  • @Shokhet: I'm asking about Har HaBayis. Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 5:21
  • 1
    According to some, Halacha says the opposite.
    – Scimonster
    Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 5:22
  • I understood that. Are you asking about where it says in halacha that "going onto Har HaBayis" is forbidden; or are you asking where halacha says that "it is an act that may lead to a religious war..."?
    – MTL
    Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 5:23
  • Going onto the Har HaBayis. Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 5:25

2 Answers 2


The Rambam in Sefer haMitzvos says in מצוה עח:

שהזהיר לכל טמא להכנס תוך מחנה לוייה שכמוהו לדורות הר הבית

That the Torah commands us not to go into the Levite camp if one is impure, which corresponds to Har Habayit in our times.

So here we seem to have a source.

The Rambam refers to the Mishna in כלים Mishna 1:8 as his source. There it says:

הַר הַבַּיִת מְקֻדָּשׁ מִמֶּנּוּ, שֶׁאֵין זָבִים וְזָבוֹת נִדּוֹת וְיוֹלְדוֹת נִכְנָסִים לְשָׁם. הַחֵיל מְקֻדָּשׁ מִמֶּנּוּ, שֶׁאֵין גּוֹיִם וּטְמֵא מֵת נִכְנָסִים לְשָׁם.‏

Har HaBayit is holier [than the city of Jerusalem] in that Zavim, Zavot, Nidot and Yoldot [who'se impurity is stricter than that of a Tamei Mes שטומאתן חמורה מטומאת מת, שעושות משכב ומושב ומטמאות באבן מסמא מה שאין כן בטומאת מת] are not allowed in.

The Cheil is holier than Har haBayit in that non-Jews and those impure because they came into contact with a dead body are not allowed in. (The Cheil was a low wall that surrounded that Temple, inside the Har HaBayit.)

This does not seem to match what the Rambam says.

The Rambam also Paskens in הלכות ביאת המקדש - פרק שלישי the same, way - and summarises in his introduction:

ז) שֶׁלֹּא יִכָּנֵס טָמֵא לַמִּקְדָּשׁ. ח) שֶׁלֹּא יִכָּנֵס טָמֵא לְהַר הַבַּיִת.

ג: וּמְשַׁלְּחִין זָבִין וְזָבוֹת נִדּוֹת וְיוֹלְדוֹת חוּץ לִשְׁתֵּי מַחֲנוֹת שֶׁהוּא חוּץ לְהַר הַבַּיִת. מִפְּנֵי שֶׁהֵן מְטַמְּאִין הַמִּשְׁכָּב וְהַמּוֹשָׁב אֲפִלּוּ מִתַּחַת הָאֶבֶן מַה שֶּׁאֵין הַמֵּת מְטַמֵּא: ‏

ד: טְמֵא מֵת אֲפִלּוּ הַמֵּת עַצְמוֹ מֻתָּר לְהִכָּנֵס לְהַר הַבַּיִת שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (שמות יג-יט) 'וַיִּקַּח משֶׁה אֶת עַצְמוֹת יוֹסֵף עִמּוֹ' עִמּוֹ בְּמַחֲנֵה הַלְּוִיָּה:‏

So we need to assume that R' Elyashiv זצ"ל considered us all possible Zavim/Zavot (who cannot enter the Har HaBayit until they bring a Korban). Otherwise we'd have the ridiculous assumption that his source is some summaries but not the details of the Rambam.

  • The link for כלים Mishan 1:8 isn't working. Can you please fix it? Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 18:42
  • Danny, I was under the impression that the issue with us going up to Har Habayit was that in our days, we are all tamei with tumat meit Commented Feb 16, 2015 at 0:12
  • @ChiddusheiTorah I fixed the link.
    – MTL
    Commented Feb 16, 2015 at 0:38
  • @NoachmiFrankfurt - can you source that? I just brought you a Mishna and a Rambam that allow it. (As to where the permissible areas are is another story. But halachically a Tamei Meth may go up into Har haBayit.) Commented Feb 16, 2015 at 7:31
  • 1
    Just wondering why all the downvotes. (As in -15 points) Commented Feb 16, 2015 at 7:32

from: http://www.hakirah.org/Vol%2010%20Messner.pdf

The Restrictions on Entering Areas of the Mikdash The Torah basis for restrictions on entering areas of the Mikdash is found in Bamidbar: Command B’nei Yisrael to send out of the encampment all those with tzaraas and any who is a zav and any who have been defiled by a corpse. Both males and females must be sent out. Outside of the camp they must be sent; and they shall not defile their camp that I dwell among them. (Bamidbar 5:2-3) Chazal learn from these verses that there were three encampments: the Machane Yisrael on the outside, the Machane Leviya surrounding the Mishkan, and the Machane Shechina, which was the Mishkan and its courtyard. Those with tzaraas could not enter any of the camps. Those defiled by zav-related emissions could not enter the Machane Leviya but could remain in the Machane Yisrael. Those who were tamei mes could not enter the Machane Shechina but could enter into the Machane Leviya. When the Beis Hamikdash replaced the Miskan as the permanent home for the Aron Kodesh, the three camps translated into: the walls of Jerusalem as the Machane Yisrael, Har Habayis as the Machane Leviya, and the Mikdash and its courtyards (not including the Ezras Nashim) as the Machane Shechina. The same prohibitions restricting which person could go into a given area applied to the Beis Hamikdash as with the Mishkan. The Mishniac source for all restrictions concerning Har Habayis and the various areas within it is in Kelim: Har Habayis is holier (than the areas within the walls of Jerusalem) since zavim, zavos, nidos, and yalados cannot enter it. The chel is even holier since goyim and tamei mes may not enter it. The Ezras Nashim is even holier since a t’vul yom may not enter it, but entering it does not require the atonement of a chatas. The Ezras Yisrael is even holier since a m’chusar kipurim may not enter it and would require the atonement of a chatas. (Kelim 1:8) It is clear from this Mishna that a tamei mes may enter Har Habayis. 2 The Tosefta (Kelim, Bava Kama 1:7) that parallels this Mishna is even clearer: “One who is tamei mes may enter Har Habayis; not only a tamei mes, but even a mes itself.” While this ruling is rather starling to those who have never heard it, it still holds today (Rambam Hilchos Beis Habechira 3:15, Hilchos Biyas Hamikdash 3:4). A corpse may be brought into Har Habayis. The restrictions on entry to Har Habayis and the Ezras Yisrael are from the Torah, since these were the original restrictions on the Machane Leviya and Machane Shechina. The restrictions on the chel and the Ezras Nashim are rabbinic. The Talmud records no debates or analysis on this Mishna, so the Mishna remains the final halacha. Rambam in Hilchos Beis Habechira (7:15–18) and Hilchos Biyas Ha- Mikdash (3:3–12) details these halachos and follows the Mishna exactly. The only outstanding issue, as far as contemporary halacha is concerned, is whether the laws still apply to a time like today, when there is no Beis HaMikdash. Concerning this point there is much debate...


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