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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3
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2answers
288 views

Did Yitzchak not Fulfill the Mitzvah of “Be Fruitful and Multiply”?

According to the understanding of many commentators "pru u'revu" (be fruitful and multiply) is a positive commandment which is not fulfilled unless a man has both a son and daughter as offspring. ...
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1answer
153 views

How far may one go with doing an aveira (violating a negative mitzva) if it means performing a positive mitzva?

I cannot remember where, but somewhere in gemara it mentions that when confronted with doing a positive mitzva or keeping a negative mitzva, one should do a positive mitzva. How far does this go ...
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4answers
360 views

How can we know God?

How can we know God? Isn't God unknowable? We learn and study and follow God's commands and pray, but how do we know God (as opposed to what God wants)? What is a true way to know GOD better? ...
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459 views

Why isn't there a single, centralized Sanhedrin today?

It seems that many mitzvot in the Torah are opened to interpretation in some way, potentially subject to ruling by the Sanhedrin. And some mitzvot (examples below) seem to require the presence of the ...
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305 views

Eating outside of a Sukkah - Negative or Positive commandment?

On Sukkoth we are required to dwell in a Sukkah, which is generally minimally defined as at least eating our meals (which in turn is generally minimally defined as grain-based products) inside the ...
9
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1answer
313 views

May one beautify his Payos?

Rashi (B'reshis 37:2) calls it an "an act of immaturity [to fix one's] hair (...) so he would look good". Obviously, payos are made from hair, but they are not considered regular hair within kabbala (...
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3answers
331 views

How is “החודש הזה לכם” the first mitzva?

The following question came up in this week's Parshat Hashavua' Chat: Rashi, at the beginning of his commentary to the Torah: אמר רבי יצחק: לא היה צריך להתחיל [את] התורה אלא (שמות יב ב) מהחודש הזה ...
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4answers
264 views

Honoring parental requests that don't benefit the parents

If one's parents ask him to do something that is not beneficial to the parents in any way whatsoever (though not harmful to the parents, the child, or anyone else, either), is he nonetheless obligated ...
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2answers
215 views

Contemporary rabbinic views on social pressure to get people to do Mitzvoth

Background While on vacation recently, I was walking down the street with a newly acquainted co-traveler, when we were approached by a young Lubavitch Yeshivah student encouraging Jewish men to lay ...
6
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1answer
569 views

Source of phrase “tizkeh l'mitzvos”

I have noticed that when I give money to people who collect in shul, they often respond by saying "tizkeh l'mitzvos." Are there any sources before relatively recently for using this phrase?
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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 ...
5
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1answer
230 views

Convert that had children prior to conversion

If a fellow converted (his children remained gentiles) and prior to his conversion he had children - has he fulfilled the Mitzva of Peru U'Revu? (sources)
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302 views

Torah view on conservation and recycling

It may seem obvious that we should 'look after' the world that Hashem gives us but is it considered a mitzvah to involve oneself in nature conservation and/or recycling?
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3answers
221 views

Must one “work” and “deserve” to observe Shabbat?

The verse on the Ten commandments, also read in Kidusha Raba by certains (Exodus 20, 8-9) says שֵׁ֤שֶׁת יָמִים֙ תַּֽעֲבֹ֔ד וְעָשִׂ֖יתָ כָּל-מְלַאכְתֶּֽךָ: וְיוֹם֙ הַשְּׁבִיעִ֔י שַׁבָּ֖ת לַֽיהוָֹ֣ה ...
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42 views

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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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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141 views

Is serving Hashem in order to receive reward in Olam Habah ideal?

משנה אבות פרק א משנה ג אַל תִּהְיוּ כַעֲבָדִים הַמְשַׁמְּשִׁין אֶת הָרַב עַל מְנָת לְקַבֵּל פְּרָס, אֶלָּא הֱווּ כַעֲבָדִים הַמְשַׁמְּשִׁין אֶת הָרַב שֶׁלֹּא עַל מְנָת לְקַבֵּל פְּרָס, וִיהִי ...
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107 views

The Chofetz Chaim on a meis mitzvah

In Ginzei Hakodesh on page 333 it says the following: "'The wise man buys mitzvos - particularly when we are speaking of 'meis mitzvah,' one that is neglected as if it were dead. It is well known ...
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85 views

Women - less Mitzvot more body parts?

According to the Gemmorah sources: Women have much less positive Mitzvot than men, as they are freed from most of the time-related Mitzvot (Mishna Kiddushin 1:7). Women have more body parts than men, ...
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2answers
291 views

Why are most mitzvas impossible to keep?

Nowadays, one can only keep so many Mitzvos (271). That is less than half of the commandments of the Torah. I don't know if there is any statistic regarding how many Psukim discuss currently relevant ...
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524 views

Can a single-parent father be exempt from time-bound mitzvot?

Rabbis such as Abudraham have explained a woman's exemption from positive time-bound commandments (mitzvot shehazman grama) in terms of a woman's ongoing and preliminary role in supporting her ...
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1answer
484 views

What is “ol mitzvot” for a convert?

A convert is suppoed to accept the ol mitzvot, the burden of halacha but does this mean an explicit intent to follow the mitzvot or simply the acceptance that there is a punishment if the mitzvot are ...
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175 views

Significance of a Four Cornered Garment

The point of wearing Tzitzit is for us to remember all of the Mitzvot, (Numbers 15:39) and there are several explanations given for how the Tzitzit remind us of the Mitzvot. However, the explanations ...
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172 views

Is the mitzva of 'Shikcha' the act of forgetting, or the act of not going back to collect what was forgotten?

Someone asked me a riddle: what mitzva can be done without kavana? Answer: Shikcha. I contended that the mitzva is the act of seeing what was forgotten and not going back to collect it, therefore it ...
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2answers
149 views

Arba Misos Beis Din- 1 Mitzvah or 4?

Tosfos on Makos 2a (Kol Hazomemin) brings a Tosefta which says that if you can't give someone their destined Arba Misos (meaning the one their Aveira warranted), you can give them a different one, ...
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2answers
717 views

Source for it being a mitzvah to make fun of Avodah Zarah?

I've heard from multiple Rabbanim that it is a mitzvah to make fun of Avodah Zarah. I have been performing this mitzvah with pleasure for many years and I would like to know the source for it.
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225 views

Is giving money to relatives considered a tzedakah?

Can giving money to my parents and relatives be considered as tzedakah?
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2answers
159 views

Tosafos - Not a mitzvah to live in Israel since can't keep the land mitzvos

Tosafos in Kesubos 110b writes: הוא אומר לעלות כו' - ...והיה אומר רבינו חיים דעכשיו אינו מצוה לדור בא"י כי יש כמה מצות התלויות בארץ וכמה עונשין דאין אנו יכולין ליזהר בהם ולעמוד עליהם: He says ...
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2answers
302 views

Ben Noah and his obligations regarding vows

A hypothetical case (based on a somewhat similar real one): Ben Noah in the process of giyur. Stood before the Beis Din and was asked question 'Will you follow the mitzvot as fully as a goy can up ...
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81 views

Does וְאַל-תִּטֹּשׁ, תּוֹרַת אִמֶּךָ invalidate the Mitzvot-Exemption-for-Women: וללמדו תורה אבל לא האם and ותלמוד תורה and פריה ורביה?

How can Shlomo write in Mishlei 1:8b, וְאַל-תִּטֹּשׁ, תּוֹרַת אִמֶּךָ, "don't abandon the Torah of your mother" if the Mitzvah of teaching one's sons - וללמדו תורה אבל לא האם - and learning Torah -...
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1answer
106 views

If a Jew was forced to do a mitzva, does it count?

If a Jew was forced to do a mitzva (For example, if we grab him and put tefilin on him.): Has he fulfilled his obligation? For example, if he was forced to say shma and then made teshuva (and now ...
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3answers
1k views

Are there required “ritual/daily” prayers in Judaism?

I have a question about the daily prayers of Judaism. I noticed on my trip to Jerusalem that a lot of those practicing Judaism got up at a certain time in the morning on the plane and faced a wall and ...
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2answers
484 views

Where are we commanded to wrap ourselves in Tzitzit?

When we put on a tallit, we say a blessing (copied from here) Barukh atah Adonai, Eloheinu, melekh ha'olam Blessed are you, Lord, our God, sovereign of the universe asher kidishanu b'mitz'votav v'...
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3answers
191 views

How does my having someone in mind when I learn help them?

Many times, as a merit for a recovery for someone sick or someone in need, I have been asked to have that person in mind when I learn. In some places, they will put up a sign asking to have a certain ...
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197 views

Where did the Semag Go?

Premise - the Semag was one of the popular/accepted works by a Rishon, and thus was chosen to be placed in the Ein Mishpat/Ner Mitzvah with Rambam and Tur. The Semak was written based off of it, as ...
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1answer
156 views

Does R. Avraham Ben HaRambam really hold that only one child is necessary for peru u'revu?

There is a dispute between Beit Shammai and Beit Hillel as to what constitutes a fulfillment of the commandment to "be fruitful and multiply" (peru u'revu). Yevamot 61b מתני' לא יבטל אדם מפריה ...
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5answers
495 views

Why the specific commandments in the Aseret haDibrot

What is HKBH trying to teach us by his choice of commandments that make up the Aseret haDibrot
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2answers
152 views

Is there any point where לשבת יצרה no longer applies?

Yeshaya 45:18 says: כי כה אמר יהוה בורא השמים הוא האלהים יצר הארץ ועשה הוא כוננה לא תהו בראה לשבת יצרה אני יהוה ואין עוד ... it (the world) was not created to be void, to be settled it was ...
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2answers
190 views

Which mitzvos exempt which mitzvos?

There is a general rule in Halacha that someone occupied with a mitzva isn't obligated to interrupt themselves to do another mitzva. This is known as " עוסק במצוה פטור מן המצוה". My question is, what ...
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2answers
1k views

Seven Mitzvos D'Rabanan

I heard there are 620 letters in the Aseres Hadibros which corresponds to the 613 Mitzvos of the Torah and 7 Mitzvos D'Rabanan. What are the Seven Mitzvos D'Rabanan - שבע מצוות דרבנן? Is there a easy ...
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1answer
289 views

Why do some of the Ten Commandments include Noahide Laws?

Of the Seven Noahide Laws, at least three are identical to one of the Ten Commandments. To be specific I am referring to Do not murder Do not steal Do not deny God Do not blaspheme I understand that ...
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1answer
181 views

Adding stones or bricks to the Bais Hamikdash

As a child I was told, and now my children are being told, that when they do a Mitzva a brick gets added to the Bais Hamikdash. As pointed out by DoubleAA, the Rambam says that it is preferable to ...
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1answer
182 views

613 mitzvos in the aseres hadibbros

I once heard that each of the 613 mitzvos can be categorized as being one of the 10 commandments, and was under the impression one of the early commentators did this categorization. I thought it was ...
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3answers
218 views

Why offer the Nations mitzvos from the Torah that are already in the Noahide Laws?

When Hashem went around offering the Torah to the other nations each asked what is written therein to each nation He told them of the commandment representing their weak point or vice, hence they ...
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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 ...
3
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1answer
181 views

420 Noachide Commandments?

I know there are seven specific commandments to noachides but recently I was talking to a Rabbi who told me actually noachides have 420 commandments and the Jewish nation has 613. Can anyone point me ...
3
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1answer
115 views

Where does R. Achay Gaon say it's a mitzva to eat meat?

Deuteronomy 12:20, with Rabbi Kaplan's translation: When God expands your borders as He promised you, and your natural desire to eat meat asserts itself, so that you say, 'I wish to eat meat,' you ...
3
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3answers
121 views

Intrinsic Value of Mitzvot

The question is the following: do mitzvot have intrinsic value, or only extrinsic value. A ramification of this is the following scenario: A person has two ways of performing an act; one of them would ...
3
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1answer
187 views

Criteria for obligation to obligate oneself in mitzvot

Certain commandments are automatically obligatory, e.g., praying, reciting shema, eating matza on the first night of Passover, etc. Other commandments, however, seem to be obligatory only if one ...
3
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1answer
311 views

Is it forbidden for a noachide (Non-Jew) to be circumcised?

I heard Rabbi Immanuel Schochet bring this up in a lecture as an off hand comment, that circumcision is bodily mutilation, and thus the only reason why Jews can do it, is because it they are ...