I have a two part question:

  1. When the scroll is elevated before the Torah is read, should the Sefer be placed on the bimah as it is (open) in preparation for the first aliyah, or should it be closed?

  2. A community that is aged and infirm with no one physically able to elevate the scroll, is there an halachically way of fulfilling the mitzvah for congregants to see the text, bearing in mind it may be impractical for all congregants to come to the bimah?

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    Hello Peter! Welcome to Mi Yodeya! Just so you know, the people who answer your questions here are not necessarily rabbis. We are a community of people interested and knowledgeable about Judaism, but our answers do not have halachic weight. You should definitely ask a rabbi in person for any practical halachic issues.
    – Daniel
    Jul 9, 2015 at 12:51
  • Now, as a follow-up on your question: most congregations do the hagbaha after reading the Torah. Are you referring to the Sefardic practice of doing it before the reading of the Torah or are you referring to something else?
    – Daniel
    Jul 9, 2015 at 12:53
  • @Daniel, Sefardim and [some/many/most?] Chasisim do Hagba before reading the Torah Jul 9, 2015 at 13:14
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    Related: judaism.stackexchange.com/q/3/501 Jul 9, 2015 at 13:17
  • Or create a hagbah robot...
    – CashCow
    Jul 9, 2015 at 13:45

1 Answer 1

  • The minhag is to cover the scroll at all times (except when reading). Thus, if there is a long wait between the Hagbaah and the Aliya, it should be covered and if it is only a couple of seconds it is just cumbersome to cover it. BTW, Ashkenazi Jews do the Hagbaah after the reading.

  • I don't understand, if the book is too heavy for anyone to carry, how has it been brought to the Bima in the first place? In any case, perhaps in such an event, they can do a Yemeni Hagbaaah...

  • Can you source your first paragraph?
    – Double AA
    Jul 9, 2015 at 14:28
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    @DoubleAA - See Kitzur SA סימן עח who says: סעיף ה' בֵּין גַּבְרָא לְגַבְרָא צְרִיכִין לִגְלֹל אֶת הַסֵּפֶר תּוֹרָה, וְאֵין צְרִיכִין לְכַסּוֹתוֹ. אַךְ קֹדֶם מַפְטִיר שֶׁאוֹמְרִים קַדִּישׁ וְיֵשׁ זְמַן אָרֹךְ צָרִיךְ לְכַסּוֹתוֹ בַּמְּעִיל שֶׁלוֹ, וְכֵן בְּכָל מָקוֹם שֶׁיֵּשׁ זְמַן אָרֹךְ כְּגוֹן שֶׁמְזַמְּרִין לֶחָתָן וְכַיּוֹצֵא בּוֹ. וְנִרְאֶה דְּהוּא הַדִּין כְּשֶׁמַּאֲרִיכִין בְּמִי שֶׁבֵּרֵךְ (סִימָן קל"ט ובסד"ה). Jul 9, 2015 at 14:32
  • My understanding of end of Talmud Megilah (last page) it talks about Gelila only, and there is no mention there of requiring the congregation to see the writing (from my recollection). Thus, perhaps, it is possible to just roll the Torah w/o doing a "complete" hagbah - i.e. w/o necessitating showing the writing to all.
    – DanF
    Jul 9, 2015 at 17:09
  • @DanF Your understanding of that Talmud Megilah was corrected on this site previously judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/59866/…
    – Double AA
    Jul 9, 2015 at 20:07

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