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Questions about Jewish customs and traditions.

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Where do we first see Elul as a time for repentance?

Today, the month of Elul is seen as being an introduction to the period of the High Holy Days (Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur). For instance, Tur Orach Chaim 581: התקינו חז"ל שיהו תוקעין בר"ח אלול ...
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1answer
66 views

What is the source and reason for saying L’Dovid during Elul and most of Tishrei?

The minhag I've seen in Ashkenazi synagogues is to say L’Dovid (Tehillim 27) morning and evening, from Rosh Chodesh Elul until Shemini Atzeres. The earliest source I can find for this is the Mishnah ...
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71 views

Keeping Two-day Shabbos in the Pacific Islands? [duplicate]

What's this I see about people in the Pacific Islands keeping two days of Shabbos? If it is true: Who, how, since when, and why?
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1answer
79 views

Keeping your own community's dinim vs. yuhara

My chosen community--like every community, I suppose--has its own body of distinctive minhagim, horaos, chumras, hiddurim, and normative halachas. All, including the hiddurim, are observed with a high ...
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29 views

Why is there an apparent “high priority” on reciting all 7 Consolation Haftarot?

Last week, I looked at the back of my shul's Tiqun Kor'im (I forgot which version it is, offhand) and noticed a long paragraphs explaining the different customs of what happens when Shabbat parshat R'...
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1answer
49 views

Welcoming the Mourner in on Friday Night

On Friday night, a mourner, during the first 7 days, a mourner enters shul right before the recitation of Psalm 92 (Mizmor shir l'yom hashabbat). A mourner enters the synagogue on Friday evening ...
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2answers
112 views

Why do Ashkenazim in Israel tend to use Nusach Sefard?

Generally, the original non-Chassidic Ashkenazi community in Israel were followers of the Vilna Gaon. Since they were practically the only Ashkenaz presence in Israel, they were able to institute many ...
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1answer
54 views

Minhag and nusach differences between Mizrahim and Sephardim (as in OG from Spain/Portugal)

These days, it seems the term "Sephardi/Sephardic" simply refers to non-Ashkenazi Jews. However, since Greece, Balkans, and of course Spain and Portugal are a long way from Iran, Iraq, Egypt, it ...
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77 views

Is a Minhag for a Baal Teshuva considered a Neder? [duplicate]

A Baal Teshuva that comes from an Ashkenazi family, became observant thru a Chabad house, with no understanding of different Nusachim and no intention to become a Lubavitcher, only to become more ...
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75 views

Minhag Hamakom in America according to R' Moshe Feinstein

I've heard that R' Moshe Feinstein said there's no Minhag Hamakom (Minhag of the area/Community) in America. Where can I find this? Is he saying that there is no one "unified" Minhag Hamakom that ...
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61 views

Source that the customs in regards to the night after Tisha B'av apply on a year when the fast is pushed off

There is a custom to keep the restrictions of the "nine days" throughout the night after the ninth of Av (until midday on the tenth). When Tisha B'av falls out on Shabbat, which causes the fast to be ...
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1answer
61 views

Tefillin at chatzos on Tisha BAv

The general practice is to not wear tefillin in the morning on Tisha BAv (OC 555:1). However, after chatzos many of the mourning practices which are only customs are lifted. As such, people wear ...
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1answer
86 views

Torah Shabbos Tisha b'Av After Chatzos

There seem to be widespread reports of an Ashkenazi custom to refrain from studying (joyful) Torah specifically after chatzos (midday) on Shabbos that falls out on the 9th of Av (see e.g. here and ...
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1answer
76 views

Why is there a difference between meat/wine and other restrictions after delayed Tisha B'av

Since the burning of the Temple began on the ninth day of Av and continued on the tenth, therefore it is a good custom not to eat meat on the day after Tisha B'av (Shulchan Aruch OC 558:1), at least ...
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1answer
122 views

Is shenayim mikra (only) a minhag according to the Chofetz Chaim?

R. Yisrael Meir Kagan writes that every Jewish man needs to know the weekly Torah portion and understand it. He says that the reason why all of Israel reads the verses twice and the translation once (...
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Are there any exceptions to not wearing tallit on Tish'a B'Av morning?

In Minhag Ashkenaz, people do not wear the tallit gadol for Tish'a B'av Shacharit. I don't recall if this is a universal rule that applies to everyone, or if it is OK for those involved with certain ...
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1answer
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Why is the תפילת גשם, The prayer for rain, said on Shmini Atzeres, rather than on Hashanahah Rabbah?

Mishnah /Rosh Hashanah 1:2 - - משנה ראש השנה פרק א משנה א בְּאַרְבָּעָה פְרָקִים הָעוֹלָם נִדּוֹן, בְּפֶסַח עַל הַתְּבוּאָה, בַּעֲצֶרֶת עַל פֵּרוֹת הָאִילָן, בְּרֹאשׁ הַשָּׁנָה כָּל בָּאֵי ...
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1answer
86 views

Sofer wearing a special robe

In the book “Israel: Splendors of the Holy Land” by Sara Kochav, there is a picture of a sofer (Torah scibe). The image describtion claims that the sofer needs to wear a special robe, as depicted in ...
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1answer
54 views

Must one have a different suits for Yom Tov and Shabbos?

I was wondering if it was preferable to have one suit for both Shabbos and Yom Tov or to have two different suits. And can you wear Shabbos/Yom Tov suits to other occasions like Bar Mitzvahs and ...
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1answer
39 views

Not to sweep floor on day of traveling (source)

I just heard in the name of Rabbi Moncowits in Montreal that on day of traveling it is forbidden to sweep the floor. Because he once was in an accident and the Lubavicher Rebbe told him it was ...
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1answer
59 views

Where is the Israeli Niggun sung after a Mazel Tov from?

In Israel it is customary to sing a wordless niggun after a mazel tov is read out in shul. (The only rendition I could find is here, excuse the cats). Where is this niggun from? Who wrote it?
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1answer
80 views

Are there any extant communities that would not eat meat from the hindquarters, even expertly porged?

There is a prohibition to eat from the sciatic nerve of an animal (gid hanasheh) as well as certain fats from a domesticated animal (cheilev). Before meat can be eaten, these must be removed via a ...
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Drink fresh water after Shabbos coming from Miriam's well?

Taamei Haminhagim 423 explains the custom of women to draw water immediately when they hear “Borchu” after Shabbos. In short it says, In Agada it says that the Well of Miriam which is in the sea ...
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1answer
43 views

Multiple people saying blessing over candles when one lights

Scenario: Erev Shabbat, the woman of the house lights the candles, and then the husband and children join on the blessing. Is this permissible? Is this a custom? If it is, what is the source of this ...
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56 views

Why is Baruch-Hu-Uvaruch-Shmo answered only in the brachos after the Haftorah, but not in the bracha before?

As far as I recall, the minhag in all Ashkenaz shuls which I have ever attended, was not to answer Baruch-Hu-Uvaruch-Shmo to the name of Hashem in the Bracha which is said before the Haftorah, but in ...
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65 views

The kittel as tachrich

I recently heard and was extremely moved by the idea that the kitlen worn on Pesach, Yom Kippur, and under the chuppah are intended to resemble tachrichim -- and are, in some cases, the actual ...
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1answer
118 views

Chaba''d doesn't follow minhag hamakom?

My shul davens "standard" Nusach Sfard. During Shabbat mincha, the sha''tz was a Chaba''d chasid. While we were returning the Torah, the sha''tz started saying Kaddish. (Nusach Chaba''d/Ari only says ...
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Switching back to a seat in Aveilut

There is a practice for a mourner to change his seat in Shul -- there are many different opinions about when and how. If, during the period of mourning, the mourner suffers another loss, so he ...
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1answer
54 views

Mogein Ovos and Veshomru - kahal then chazan

Are there any mekoros/reasons as to why many siddurim say that Veshomru (on Friday night after Hashkiveinu) and Mogein Ovos (in brocho mei'ein sheva) should be said by the congregation first and then ...
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1answer
100 views

Why does Nusach Sefard omit Tachanun during Mincha?

In many, if not all, of the Nusach Sefard synagogues I've prayed at, the synagogue does not say Tachanun during Mincha during regular weekdays. What is the source for this practice?
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Starting a new job in the Three Weeks

In response to "What things are restricted in the 3 weeks"? there is no mention of a restriction to start a new job. Is there a source that recommends that one should not start a new job in the 3 ...
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2answers
84 views

Source for putting the orlah in earth/sand specifically from Israel after a bris?

A Mohel in America once asked me to bring some earth/sand from Israel to America for him to bury the orlahs (foreskins) in after doing a Bris. Does anyone here know of a source for putting the orlah ...
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1answer
56 views

Custom to daven Maariv motsei Shabbos for the omud prior to yahrzeit

What is the source of the Minhag to daven Ma'ariv Motsei Shabbos for the Omud prior to one's Yahrzeit the coming week ?
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Does not saying Tachanun during Shacharit automatically exempt one from not saying it during Mincha? [duplicate]

Between 9 and 12 Sivan, some shuls don't say Tachanun while others do. Let's say for Shacharit, a person is in a shul that doesn't say Tachanun. For Mincha, he goes to a shul that does. Is he exempt ...
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65 views

Line break before למען ירבו ימיכם

In most of my prayer books there is a line break before למען ירבו ימיכם in the second chapter of the Shema (see also this one from Vilna or Zhytomyr): וְהָיָ֗ה אִם־שָׁמֹ֤עַ תִּשְׁמְעוּ֙ אֶל־...
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1answer
55 views

Why don't I see the minhag to put grass in shul?

The Rema brings a minhag to put grass and other herbage in shul for Shavuos. I've seen this practiced only once. Why don't more Ashkenazi shuls follow this minhag? I feel some would be tempted to say ...
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0answers
162 views

Is reading Toldos Yesh"u on Nittle-Nacht minhag? Who keeps it?

Toldos Yesh"u is a medevil polemical Hebrew text or related texts that describe a story of Yesh"u ha Notsri. It is not cerain when first written but scholars guess anywhere from 500 to 1000 CE. I want ...
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1answer
561 views

Skipping the last verse in Aleinu

I was recently in Jerusalem for a period of time and while I was there, I would join a minyan at a nearby yeshiva for mincha every day. At the end of mincha, the person davening from the amud would ...
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2answers
282 views

Pronouncing “O” (Cholam) as “Oy”?

Typically in the Yeshivish world, the "O" sound is pronounced as "Oy" (i.e. "Moydim Anachnu Loch"). Where does this come from?
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109 views

Lag baomer and non-chasidic Jews

Besides the halakhot (not saying tachanun, possibility of weddings, cutting hair, listening to music etc.), were/are there any particular Lag baomer customs for non-mekubal/chasidic Jews? For example, ...
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1answer
64 views

Kaddish deRabbanan during public prayers

As a follow-up of this interesting question, I would like to take one step back. Most say Kaddish deRabanan after the morning Korbanot (see Emden), Ein kEloheinu and Bameh Madlikin. In contrast, ...
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1answer
53 views

Chometz Gamur after Pesach, buying and eating

For someone who is machpid not to sell chometz gamur, but either burns, gives away, eats or throws it in the trash, etc, before Pesach, would he also be machpid not to buy and consume chometz gamur ...
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2answers
128 views

Owning a pair of Tefillin, Halacha or convenience?

I came to the realization* that every single Bar Mitzva boy gets his own pair of Tefillin, and that in general everyone seems to make sure to only use their own pair of Tefillin. Interestingly, by ...
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1answer
97 views

Is it obligatory / recommended / permitted / discouraged / forbidden to tie a red thread to a child's crib?

The comments to this question discuss tying to a red thread to a child's crib. Garvey80 claims that it is a minhag yisrael to do so, and is thus obligatory. User6591 claims that it may be forbidden, ...
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sefirat haomer-Shavuot [duplicate]

the time between Pesach and Shavuot is a period of mourning and repentance as rabbi Akiva's 24,000 students died because they did not treat each other with respect. How is it that such learned ...
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32 views

When does a practice become a minhag? [duplicate]

What are the criterion for a practice to become a minhag? Just because we do something over and over does that make it a minhag? Changing a minhag can be difficult but how does one actually get ...
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53 views

Do Noachides have minhagim?

According to Judaism, do Gentiles have minhagim as it relates to how they live out the Seven Laws of Noah, or are they capable of having or establishing them? If Gentiles can/do have minhagim, are ...
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102 views

Why has a single daled knot become the “standard” on tefillin?

It has been brought to my attention that originally, both Ashkenazim and Sephardim used a square knot (also called the "double-daled knot") on the tefillin shel rosh, but when the daled knot was ...
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1answer
56 views

Source for using a cloth between the hand and negel vasser cup when washing?

I used to use a cloth between the hand and negel vasser cup when washing because I saw others (chassidim) doing it in Monsey, but I stopped because I've never seen a reason for it in halacha. I'll ...
3
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1answer
135 views

Visiting the graves of Tzadikim on chol hamoed

I was recently informed that there is a minhag (custom) to not visit graves on chol hamoed. Does this apply to visiting the graves of tzadikim?