There are a few examples frequently offered for the rule "עשה דוחה לא תעשה":

  • Someone whose garment has four corners and linen can nonetheless put wool tzitzis on it. This is unlikely nowadays, when we don't wear four-cornered garments.
    (Anyway, I wonder whether it applies if we don't have t'cheles, which I assume we hold, at least l'chumra, is the case today.)
  • The obligation of mila overrides the prohibition on cutting tzaraas off of one's body in case they happen to coincide in time and location on the body. Again, irrelevant nowadays in the absence of tzaraas diagnosing.

Are there any nowadays-practical examples of עשה דוחה לא תעשה?

  • 1
    Your talis and talis katan don't have four corners nowadays?
    – user6591
    Aug 30, 2015 at 15:53
  • 1
    Don't have time for sources but eating matzoh which had issur of Chodosh according to many Achronim (avnei nezer I believe) is permitted since the Aseh of matzoh is docheh the lav of chodosh.
    – Yoni
    Aug 30, 2015 at 16:07
  • Maybe a Cohen becoming Tameh for a מת מצוה? And maybe גדול כבוד הבריות שדוחה את לא תעשה שבתורה Aug 31, 2015 at 12:03
  • Maybe Yoma 86b אמר ר' יוחנן גדולה תשובה שדוחה את לא תעשה שבתורה and the לא תעשה is לא יוכל בעלה הראשון וגו says Rashi Aug 31, 2015 at 12:10
  • 1
    – Double AA
    Nov 23, 2015 at 17:10

1 Answer 1


"Are there any nowadays-practical examples of עשה דוחה לא תעשה?"

Yes! Some examples -

  1. Performing Bris Millah on Shabbos
  2. Saving a life will overrule laws of Shabbos and Yom Tov despite melachos (desecrations) that may be involved in doing so.
  3. Yibum overriding eishes ach (the prohibition to marry one's deceased brother's wife)- to require chalitzah (nowadays).
  • Please explain the -1. These are practical examples are they not? Was that not the question? Sep 8, 2015 at 22:19
  • 3
    None of these have to do with the principle Aseh Doche Lo Taaseh AFAIK. So -1
    – Double AA
    Sep 8, 2015 at 22:21
  • 1. Bris Millah = Aseh ; Creating chaburah on shabbos = lo sa'aseh 2. pikuach nefashos = aseh , melachos shabbs such as creating a fire (extending to cooking, driving or any other issur shabbos you could conceive, etc) = lo sa'aseh ; 3. Yibbum = aseh , issur eshes ach = lo sa'aseh. Each of these are examples of modern day aseh docheh lo saaseh Sep 8, 2015 at 22:23
  • 2
    Yes, but the reason one overrides the other is not the principle Aseh Doche Lo Taaseh.
    – Double AA
    Sep 8, 2015 at 22:25
  • A simple proof that it can't be Aseh Doche Lo Saaseh is because all of these cases involve Issurei Kares, which an Asei is explicitly not Doche Sep 9, 2015 at 0:14

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