Are there any sources that address whether a person, on purpose, prays without tefillin, would he have to repeat his prayer, or once he did it he doesn’t have to repeat it?

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    Can you edit to explain why you think such a source might exist? Why might Tefillin be necessary to pray?
    – Double AA
    Nov 20, 2018 at 18:09
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    Ula (Berakhot 14b) said anyone who recites Shema without tefillin it as if he beared false testimony against himself. It's pretty clear that wearing tefillin is a crucial part of davening.
    – ezra
    Nov 20, 2018 at 18:31
  • @ezra it's at least a ln important thing to wear for Shema. Who said anything about davening and why would it be meakev? Most men recite most prayers without Tefillin!
    – Double AA
    Nov 20, 2018 at 18:35
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    I’m not asking about shema
    – user18285
    Nov 20, 2018 at 18:41
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    Shema is the most stringent if you want to say that even,so surely any other part of davening doesnt need teffilin.
    – sam
    Nov 20, 2018 at 18:53

3 Answers 3


In the following source in Yalkut Yosef 25:41, it discusses a case of someone who doesn't presently have tefillin with him and the tzibbur is about to start the amida. R' Yitzchak Yosef writes that he should wait until he has tefillin if he regularly concentrates on his prayers(and time permits); otherwise, he should pray with the tzibbur without tefillin and don them later or borrow a pair from someone.

We can see from here that while it is customary to pray shacharit with tefillin, in a case of dochak or oness, it is not me'akev the tefila. Even if someone did so intentionally, it seems the din would be the same, in my opinion(even though they acted inappropriately).

מי שאין לו תפילין עתה, ולפניו תפלה בצבור, ואם ימתין עד שיביאו לו תפילין לא ימצא מנין להתפלל בו, אם הוא רגיל לכוין בתפלתו מתחלתה ועד סופה, עדיף שימתין עד שיגיעו אליו התפילין אף שיצטרך להתפלל ביחידות. ובלבד שלא יעבור זמן תפלה. אבל אם אינו רגיל לכוין בתפלתו [פירוש המלים] או שיש חשש שעל-ידי ההמתנה יעבור זמן תפלה, עדיף שיתפלל עם הצבור בלי תפילין, ויניח תפילין במשך היום כאשר יגיעו לידיו, ויחזור לקרוא עם התפילין קריאת שמע, כדי שלא יהיה מעיד עדות שקר בעצמו. ואמנם אם אין לו תפילין והצבור מתפללין, ויכול ליקח תפילין של אחר בהשאלה, מוטב להתפלל עם הצבור בתפילין של אחר, מלהמתין לתפילין שלו ולהתפלל ביחידות. ובלבד שהתפילין של ראש יהיו מונחים במקומן כדת. [ילקו''י שם הע' מ'. שאר''י א' עמ' שכה].

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    thanks but that doesn’t mention doing it b’mezid
    – user18285
    Nov 20, 2018 at 19:56
  • Downvote, agreeing with above comment. I don't know how you concluded that these rules could apply to intentionally not wearing tefillin.
    – DanF
    Nov 20, 2018 at 21:48
  • Zman tefila or tsibbur are a good reason. But what if he intentionally prayed without tefilin despite he can pray with tefilin?
    – kouty
    Nov 21, 2018 at 2:57
  • @kouty I'm inclined to say he still wouldn't have to repeat it because tefillin/shma/amidah are all separate mitzvas that can be performed on their own, even though we do them together in the morning. He would have to give a din as to why he didn't pray with tefillin. Nov 21, 2018 at 16:07

Gemara Brachos 14b:

ואמר רבי יוחנן הרוצה שיקבל עליו עול מלכות שמים שלמה יפנה ויטול ידיו ויניח תפילין ויקרא ק"ש ויתפלל וזו היא מלכות שמים שלמה

Loosely translated: One who wants to accept the yoke of Heavenly Kingship should perform his bodily needs, wash his hands, lay Tefillin, recite Krias Shema and Daven. This is the complete form of Kabbalas Oil Malchus Shamayim.

Rabbeinu Yona (Brachos 10b midafei harif]:

אלא דתנא אלו [קריאת שמע, תפילה, תפילין] שהם חמורות, שיש בהם קבלת עול מלכות שמיים, וכל שכן בכל שאר המצוות שאינן חמורות כל כך, לפיכך אמר תפילה ותפילין עם קריאת שמע, מפני שקבלת עול מלכות שמים שלימה היא עם התפילין כדכתבינן לעיל, וגם צריך להתפלל עמהם

Rabbeinu Yona writes that there is a connection between Krias Shema, Tefillin and Tefilla since they all involve Kabbalas Oil Malchus Shamayim - and the ideal form of Kabbalas Oil Malchus Shamayaim requires wearing Tefillin while reciting Krias Shema and Tefilla.

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    Of course, he would not have to repeat his prayers if he did so without tefillin. But ideally, one should wear Tefillin while praying.
    – chortkov2
    Nov 20, 2018 at 21:34
  • The only thing I'm inferring is that he needs to repeat just Kri'at Shema and Shemoneh Esreh with his tefillin. What is unclear is what is meant by "tefilla" when you put on tefillin for mincha and you davened w/o tefillin during Shacharit. Does any "tefillah" suffice, or would you need *tashlumin"?
    – DanF
    Nov 20, 2018 at 21:52
  • @Danf The onus would be on you to prove one needs to pray again if they prayed without tefillin...safek berachot lehakel. If you want to be precise. Nov 20, 2018 at 22:00
  • @chachamNisan That really generalizes things! The only thing that's D'Oraita is Kri'at Shema. Even the brachot before & after Shema are Derabanan, I believe.
    – DanF
    Nov 21, 2018 at 16:55

R. Chaim Berlin has a responsum about wearing tefillin on Chol Hamoed. The questioner had always worn tefillin on Chol Hamoed, but then he got married and the only synagogue around was one in which tefillin was not worn on Chol Hamoed. In the first part of the responsum R. Berlin states that the questioner must continue to wear tefillin on Chol Hamoed.

In the second part, though, he references a previous correspondence in which he had said that it would be better to recite Shema and pray Shacharit alone at home. The questioner had apparently questioned this, suggesting that maybe he should just put on tefillin at home without praying Shacharit, and perhaps even without reciting Shema, and then pray with the congregation without tefillin.

R. Berlin rejected this suggestion because the whole point of wearing the tefillin on Chol Hamoed even though he is now in a place where no one does is to continue his lifelong custom of doing such. If we're looking at lifelong customs, it was surely always his custom to pray Shacharit with tefillin, such that from the day of his Bar Mitzvah he would have never prayed without tefillin. Praying with a congregation, however, was certainly not a lifelong custom; indeed, praying alone is a standard practice, and the person had certainly prayed alone many a time.

Thus, if the goal is to continue the customs that had been operative his whole life, it would be better to pray with tefillin without a congregation than to pray without tefillin with a congregation.

Shu"t Nishmat Chaim

Benei Brak 2002 edition — Siman 60
Jerusalem 2008 edition — 1:15

ואשר הכרעתי במכתבי הראשון במי שמעולם הי' מניח תפילין במועד ועתה קבע מקום תפלתו בבהכנ"ס שאין מניחין ואין לו בעירו בהכנ"ס אחר המניחין מוטב לו להתפלל ק"ש ותפלת שחרית בביתו ביחידות וע"ז דן כבודו הרי מוטב לו להניח תפילין בביתו ולקרות בהן ק"ש בלבד או גם בלא ק"ש ולהתפלל בצבור בלא תפילין הוא פשוט דהרי כל עיקר מה שאנו דנים עליו הוא שלא ישנה מנהגו מכפי שנהג מעולם והרי להתפלל בלא תפילין לא נהג מעולם מיום שהתחיל להניח תפלין ביום שנעשה בר מצוה מיום ההוא והלאה לא התפלל תפלת שחרית בלא תפילין אפי' פעם אחת משא"כ להתפלל ביחידות הוא מנהג פשוט ובלי ספק כבר התפלל ביחידות כמה פעמים

From here we can derive that there is certainly a value in specifically praying with tefillin, as that is customary, but it is surely not a formal law that one must pray with tefillin.

  • You write "it is surely not a formal law that one must pray with tefillin"...But it is by virtue of minhag! According to my understanding, it's a Rabbinic enactment(takana). Chazal instituted it in the morning prayers in accordance with R' Yochanan's statement quoted below and similar statements by other Tannaim. If one had an oness or big dochak, they may pray without them so as not to miss out on tefilla b'zmana(inasmuch as they put them on later). Just to lehasir michshol. Nov 20, 2018 at 21:42
  • @chachamNisan R. Yochanan just says that that’s the most complete form of עול מלכות שמים.
    – Alex
    Nov 20, 2018 at 21:47
  • And? So maybe handwashing isn't necessary either? Nov 20, 2018 at 21:48
  • @chachamNisan What does that have to do with this?
    – Alex
    Nov 20, 2018 at 21:51
  • That R' Yochanan's statement is brought down as the halacha; like handwashing. Nov 20, 2018 at 21:53

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