Questions tagged [mitzvah]

Mitzvah - commandment. This tag is for questions about the nature of commandments or the status of being a commandment. (However, many particular commandments have their own tags.)

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What are the mitzvot that a gentile is forbidden to do?

I know that some mitzvot like keeping shabbat, putting tefillin are forbidden for a gentile to do because they are a sign of the covenant between Israel and HaShem. What are the full list of the ...
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1answer
128 views

Counting Sefirah in a made up language

Can one fulfill the mitzvah of counting the Omer by counting in a language that only he/she understands? What if a few people understand? An entire goup?
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Source for Geonic division of mitzvos

The Rambam and those who follow suit divide the 613 mitzvos into two groups, 248 positive mitzvos and 365 negative mitzvos. This is sourced from Makkos 23b. However, most of the Geonim (for example: ...
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1answer
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Halacha of not being obligated to spend more than a fifth of one's money on a mitzvah

It is brought down in halacha (Orach Chaim 656) that a person is not obligated to spend more than 20% of his money on performing a positive mitzvah. Is the 20% calculated according to his total bank ...
6
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1answer
95 views

Patur from mitzvah and do it, have you fulfilled it contradiction

In Hilchos Kriyas Shema, the SA (OC 71:1) says מִי שֶׁמֵּת לוֹ מֵת שֶׁהוּא חַיָּב לְהִתְאַבֵּל עָלָיו, אֲפִלּוּ אֵינוֹ מֻטָּל עָלָיו לְקָבְרוֹ, פָּטוּר מִקְּרִיאַת שְׁמַע וּמִתְּפִלָּה. ...
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Do the laws of Ribis apply to loans of virtual currency?

If a Jew lends a player in a multiplayer online game money, and he knows without a doubt that that player is Jewish, does the prohibition of ribis apply? (After all, the only thing that changed was a ...
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47 views

Are all mitzvos forbidden near a grave? If not, why not? If yes, why not say so?

The Talmud (Bavli, B'rachos 18 amud 1) mentions a prohibition on wearing tzitzis or t'filin, or reading from a Torah scroll, in a cemetery, based on "one who taunts the pauper, that makes him a ...
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Why is Rosh Chodesh called “the first mitzvah in the Torah”?

I continually see Rosh Chodesh identified as "the first mitzvah in the Torah".[1] I recognize that it is the first mitzvah given to Am Yisrael as a nation. But there are three mitzvot that precede it ...
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Mitzvos from the 613 that are not included in the Ten Commandments

The Chasam Sofer to parshas Nasso says (Toras Moshe I, ד"ה ושמו שמי) that it is known that even though the Ten Commandments contain all the 613 mitzvos (see Rashi and here), the three mitzvos that ...
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Why isn't imitating Hashem's traits a constant mitzvah?

In the introduction to Sefer HaChinuch, the author delineates what he feels are six constant mitzvos from the 613. מששה מצות מהן שחיובן תמידי לא יפסק מעל האדם אפי' רגע בכל ימיו. ואלו הם. א' להאמין ...
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187 views

During the nine days, can we do something “slightly dangerous” in order to fulfill a mitzvah?

During the nine days, many hold that we refrain from activities that are considered even slightly dangerous; for example, air travel. However, I have read that R' Shlomo Zalman Auerbach (who ...
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1answer
207 views

Does this count as Tzedakah?

I found out there's an app that gives money to charity depending on how much you run. You can choose between dozens of organizations that help stop hunger, help the homeless, cure cancer, provide ...
5
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1answer
126 views

Practical עשה דוחה לא תעשה

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 ...
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What is the source for Beis Din's obligation to enforce mitzvos

The Gemarra in Kesubos 86a and Chullin 132b teaches the following: במצות עשה כגון שאומרין לו עשה סוכה ואינו עושה לולב ואינו עושה מכין אותו עד שתצא נפשו With regard to positive mitzvot, for ...
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29 views

The sins mentioned in על חטא - why those?

This question about the "אשמנו" list is still left unanswered. My question is about the apparent inconsistency of the "על חטא שחטאנו" list - so many different categories of sins are listed in the ABC ...
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A man tells us he raped a woman

The Torah says the following about a man who rapes a woman (Deuteronomy 22:29). וְ֠נָתַן הָאִ֨ישׁ הַשֹּׁכֵ֥ב עִמָּ֛הּ לַאֲבִ֥י הנער [הַֽנַּעֲרָ֖ה] חֲמִשִּׁ֣ים כָּ֑סֶף וְלֽוֹ־תִהְיֶ֣ה לְאִשָּׁ֗ה ...
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1answer
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Can people take Mishloach Manot?

Is there an operative element to Mishloach Manot that requires a sending, i.e. a physical transfer from person to person? (related sources in these related questions ) If I must travel on Purim, I ...
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Vilna Gaon - Mitzvah Goreres Mitzvah

I once heard (I do not recall from who or where) that The Vilna Gaon once remarked that the way to determine if one's actions were in fact a good deed, one must look at the after effects. The Gr"a is ...
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How do we celebrate Tu B'Av?

Besides the dancing maidens of Jerusalem, many other significant events occurred on Tu B'Av for it to be considered one of the holiest days of the year. As mentioned in a previous question, many ...
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94 views

Are you yotzei by lighting candles through a grama?

Does one fulfill the mitzvah of lighting candles (sabbath or chanukah) if done by a grama (indirect action)? Example
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Matzah Shemurah on the 8th day of Pesaḥ (in the Diaspora)

According to those who hold that there is a Kiyyum Mitzvath 'Aseh DeOraitha (a fulfillment of a positive Biblical commandment) every time one eats a KeZayith (olive size's worth) of Matzah on Pesaḥ, ...
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Wearing or not wearing a tallit gadol

Related to Why do we don the tallit gadol? and Is there any basis for Chabad minhagim regarding tallit gadol? I'm not really clear on the rules of when someone who is called for a function during ...
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How does Rambam decide what defines a Mitzvah?

Rambam in Sefer Hamitzvos lists 14 rules that guided him in writing his Sefer Hamitzvos. Practically all of them focus on what does not consitute a Mitzvah Deoraytah: השרש הראשון שאין ראוי למנות ...
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Getting Back Mitzvot One Regretted

Can one get the reward for mitzvot he regretted back, if he does teshuva for regretting them, or regrets that he regretted doing them?
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Studying versus doing

In commenting on Leviticus 26:14, Or HaChaim argues that if you study the details of the sacrifices today, when you cannot actually do them, you have fulfilled the commandments on sacrifices better ...
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How long does “bikur cholim” last?

When someone visits the sick and fulfils the mitzvah of bikur cholim, when is he "finished" or is he constantly fulfilling the mitzvah as long as the choleh wants him to stay? If he is constantly ...
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0answers
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According to the Ramban, Did all the descendants of all the Sh'vatim observe the Torah before it was given?

From the Ramban in Beraishis 26:5 it seems that not only Avraham Avinu kept the Torah, but also his descendants, including Yaakov, Yosef, Amram, Moshe etc. He derives this from the passuk "that he [...
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Marriage and p'ru urvu

An answer here states: The mitzva of Pru Urvu covers only marrying someone believed to be fertile. And one here: "The mitzva per se of pru urvu means: "marry someone who is able to bear ...
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Were Benei Noach chayiv in Priah u'Reviah and Bris Milah before Sinai?

The Gemara in Sanhedrin 59a says that any mitzvah given to Benei Noach and repeated at Har Sinai, generally speaking, was given to both groups. Thus, both groups are given the issur of Avodah Zarah, ...
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Rabbinically speaking, does honoring a Mitzvah in year 5777 matter more than honoring a Mitzvah during year 1?

"A person who honors a Mitzvah now, they will receive a greater grace and reward in the world to come than if they were honoring the same Mitzvah during the time of revelation. The above statement ...
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0answers
114 views

Visiting a sick parent who doesn't want visitors

If one's parent is ill, one would probably want to visit. It is, it seems, some level of mitzvah (though it isn't explicitly on the Rambam's list of 613, it is included under some other general ...
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0answers
113 views

Secular books for Torah study

If one is reading a secular book about electricity in order to understand how it works so that I can learn the halachos of using electricity on Shabbos, would the studying of the secular book be ...
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Must there be explicit assigning of a Shaliach?

I don't really understand the laws of shlichut, designating a proxy to perform a mitzvah so I hope the question makes sense. Does someone have to assign me the role of shaliach on his behalf, or can ...
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0answers
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Does Publicizing Kiddush (or Chillul) Hashem Constitute That?

If someone (Jew of gentile) exposes an act of kiddush (or chas v'shalom chillul Hashem) to the world, does that person fulfill (or make him self guilty of) the same? (Based on this comment.)
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Honoring a wicked father who has repented - How is he still considered wicked?

The Shulhan 'Aruch (Y"D 240:18) writes that one is obligated to honor his father even if the father is wicked (actually, it says that a Mamzer is obligated, but I believe that the implication is that ...
3
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1answer
286 views

Is v'chai bahem a mitzvah?

The passuk says one should "do the mitzvos to live by them" (Vayikra 18:5), from which the Gemara (Sanhedrin 74a) learns that one, in general, must violate the mitzvos rather than die. Is this a ...
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1answer
75 views

Why doesn't the Talmud provide a list of the 613 commandments?

The Talmud says that there are 613 commandments in the Torah: Rabbi Simlai, when preaching, said: 613 precepts were communicated to Moses: 365 negative precepts, corresponding to the number of ...
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Is it a mitzvah to create a situation for others to be mekayem a mitzvah?

I recall reading (though I can't find it) that the person who was punished for collecting sticks on Shabbat was actually doing so in an effort to help others see the laws of Shabbat in practice (or ...
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0answers
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Counting parts of a Mitzvah as a Mitzvah (Rambam's 12th principle)

Rambam in Sefer Hamitzvos lays [his own] principles of what counts as a Mitzvah and what's not. The 12th principle says that: שאין ראוי למנות חלקי המלאכה מהמלאכות שבא הצווי בעשייתם כל חלק וחלק בפני ...
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Why for Rambam learning and teaching Torah are not two different Mitzvos?

Rambam in Sefer Hamitzvos #11 and in Mishne Torah Hil. Talmud Torah rules that studying and teaching Torah are one Mitzvah: היא שצונו ללמוד תורה וללמדה וזהו הנקרא תלמוד תורה, והוא אמרו ושננתם ...
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33 views

How many mitzvos derabanan are there?

We know that there are 613 Mitzvos min HaTorah, but are there any authoritative opinions who have counted up the total number of Rabbinic Mitzvos (I'd imagine that there are differing opinions and ...
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Murder in Eretz Yisrael

The Gemara in Yoma (85a) argues that murder is more chamur than chilul Shabbos because it "contaminates the land and drives away the Shechina" ושפיכות דמים מטמא את הארץ וגורם לשכינה שתסתלק מישראל ...
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How will the nullification of mitzvot be communicated?

I have held off asking this question for a while because I have only seen the premise in parsha flyers at chabad but a chance look at Wikipedia gave me the sources (below). It is said that certain ...
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0answers
57 views

What are the mitzvot that require intent?

Forgive me in that I do not know the proper nomenclature. Some mitzvot are complete by the simple action (or refrain from action) Some mitzvot require action and intent, besides the problem of ...
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34 views

Eating specifically fruit of shmitta

Is there an inyun to specifically eat fruits that have kedushas shvi'is? How much must a person go out of their way to buy such fruits? Let's say they cost more, how much more must they spend? Is this ...
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144 views

Can a rabbinical mitzvah (that is currently being done) override a biblical mitzvah?

There's a principle of Osek Ba-Mitzva Patur Min Ha-Mitzva that says that if one is in the midst of doing one mitzvah he is exempt from performing other mitzvot. Do both mitzvot have to be of the ...
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59 views

What is the obligation of “Kedusha” (Holiness?)

The verse in Leviticus (19:2) says "you shall be holy" what is the parameter of this and to what degree is it binding. Rambam (Sefer Hamitzvos shoresh 4) writes that is is a general commandment to ...
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61 views

Is there a pattern to Yonasan Ben Uziel's introduction to mitzvos?

Starting with the dibros, YbU introduces some mitzvos with the words 'Ami bnei Yisrael" and I don't see the pattern as to when he does and when he doesn't. Anyone have an idea which ones deserve this ...
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127 views

How many disputed and undisputed Torah Mitzvot are there?

If you combine all the known lists of the "613 Mitzvot" (Rambam, Ramban, Semag, etc.), how many total mitzvot are listed by at least one person as a Mitzvah Deoreitya? I am curious to compare this to ...
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54 views

What type of mitzvah, if any, is a donation to medical research?

If I give money to a charity that finances medical research, I think I'm doing a mitzvah, but of what sort? Is this tzedakah when I'm not clothing or feeding the poor? Is it saving a life when there ...