Rashi says about the altar that we can't wave a sword over it in משפטים, the maftir. Can I add his opinion (above included also) to the list of אלו דברים שאדם אוכל פירותיהם בעולם הזה in Shacharit? What halachot might prevent me from adding to the tefillah? This particular mishnah appears to have several sources, and the version in many siddurim does not match תלמוד בבלי מסכת שבת, קכז עמוד א -ב or משנה מסכת פאה, פרק א, משנה א but I know is discussed here.

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    Note this isn't part of Tefillah. Birkot HaTorah are Berakhot said before performing a Mitzva. Any Torah study can be said after them. (I don't know why you'd think to change the text of a Mishna; that just seems dishonest.)
    – Double AA
    Jul 27, 2016 at 18:15
  • @double-aa It would seem it's not exactly a Mishna, it's an agreed-upon formulation used by the siddur.
    – Nathan
    Jul 27, 2016 at 18:29
  • It is a berayita I think, the text is a way to link the Birkat Hatora to Mikra, Mishna and Beraita. Mikra Yevarechecha... Mishna Elu devarim sheein... Berayita Elu devarim Sheadam ochel... quasi sure. anyway, the nusach in sepharadic siddurim contains also Ben Ish LeIshto. ... but to change is contrary to the rules of Shinun Tora Shebeal pe. So it is not good.
    – kouty
    Jul 27, 2016 at 18:57
  • Rashi includes it in an identical list, though on his commentary to waving in Yitro (not Mishpatim, my mistake) כב in a kal v'chomer near the end on the subject of waving a sword over the stone mizbeah nested in between the two last items of nusach ashkenaz's version of this - which is included in the Torah b'al pe - what if the Berayita was damaged?
    – Nathan
    Jul 27, 2016 at 19:13
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    This wording is from the Sifra (K'doshim 4:11): "אדם שמטיל שלום בין איש לאשתו בין משפחה למשפחה בין עיר לעיר ובין מדינה למדינה ובין אומה לחברתה עאכ"ו שלא תבואהו הפורענות". The wording in the siddur is mostly based on the gemara in Shabbos 127a about things that "אדם אוכל פירותיהן בעולם הזה והקרן קיימת לו לעולם הבא" (and other sources about what's considered in the category of "גמילות חסדים"), whereas the statement from the Sifra is a separate statement that a person will not suffer from making peace between different families.
    – Fred
    Jul 27, 2016 at 22:48

1 Answer 1


If I understand you correctly you want to know about appending a clause into this paragraph because you'd like to include a prayer for family unity.

The minhag is to say this "memra" after Birkas Kohanim so we may follow the b'racha with mikra, mishna, and memra. (Mishna B'rura 47,21). In fact, the statement as it appears in the siddur is a conglomeration of several nusachaos by Amoraim, etc., as you alluded to. In any case, the version canonized in the siddur is a list of mitzvos with a unique quality; namely, they grant a benefit to the doer in this world, beyond the reward they earn the doer in the world to come.

With this understanding in mind, adding to this list would be out of place, 1) because whatever more I add does not in fact share the quality of the other elements in the list; the list already includes all those mitzvos that share this quality, and 2) the list is not one of requests.

  • See the comment of @Fred from the Sifra
    – kouty
    Jul 29, 2016 at 12:34
  • I'm not sure what you mean to show. That comment merely shows that the phrase appears in a Sifra. I was addressing the question of inserting extraneous phrases into the memra of Chazal. My point was that extraneous insertions don't have a place, which is what I understood the questioner to be asking.
    – Talmid
    Jul 29, 2016 at 12:56
  • the list already includes all those mitzvos that share this quality Are you sure? A few of the items added into the siddur's list are subcategories of "g'milus chasadim." Aren't there other subcategories of g'milus chasadim that aren't listed explicitly in the siddur?
    – Fred
    Jul 29, 2016 at 18:00
  • @Fred I think it's sensible to say that the memra cited is providing an exhaustive list. If more elements would belong in the list, the memra would be misleading in omitting them. As far as the apparent redundancy: While there are many things that are included in g'milus chasadim, those that are singled out take primacy. For example - If I have the choice to perform בקור חולים or give someone a ride, בקור חולים would take precedence. I heard this explanation once from R' Feivel Cohen, שליט"א, and it was based on a רמב"ם. I apologize for not remembering the רמב"ם.
    – Talmid
    Jul 31, 2016 at 23:05
  • @Talmid Just wondering: Do you know the original source for the exact version we have in our siddurim? Because by your logic we may as well add in the other extra items mentioned by R' Yochanan in Shabbos 127a ("והמגדל בניו לתלמוד תורה והדן את חברו לכף זכות"), as those would also be prime examples of the "talmud Torah" category and the "hava'as shalom bein adam lachaveiro" category, respectively (cf. Rashi Shabbos 127b s.v. "הני נמי בהני שייכי").
    – Fred
    Jul 31, 2016 at 23:16

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