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Questions tagged [pikuachnefesh-danger-life]

Situations in which a life is threatened; most (though not all), Jewish laws are suspended in order to save a life.

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Does halacha strongly encourage the use of aggressive medical interventions?

It seems from what I've read in books: Jewish law encourages the uptake of aggressive medical interventions. Some examples include CPR, ventilators, chemotherapy, and intensive care unit (ICU) care. ...
unforgettableidSupportsMonica's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
150 views

Is one Jewish life worth more than multiple non-Jewish (Arab) lives [closed]

Doing a project for a class called Rendering Legal Decisions. Please let me know if you have an answer using specific Halacha
Joseph 's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
76 views

Mesirah for serious crimes and abuses

I’m curious whether Halacha permits certain leniences for Mesirah for serious crimes based on pikuach nefesh or related similar reasoning. For example, cases of sexual abuse of minors, battery etc. ...
Kirk's user avatar
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4 votes
5 answers
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Let's Kill Hitler

There is a popular moral question - if you had access to a time machine that was capable of allowing you to do so, should you go back in time and kill Hitler when he was a child, before he had a ...
Moses Supposes's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
517 views

New responsa on releasing terrorists in exchange for hostages?

The State of Israel has over the years engaged in the exchange of terrorists and criminals in exchange for the release of hostages. This topic has prior been explored in posts such as Q 10731 and Q ...
Deuteronomy's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
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Birkat hamazon for chametz on Passover

On Passover, if a Jew consumes Chametz because they have to for Pikuach Nefesh, do they recite Birkat Hamazon afterwards? Of course this would be more than the minimum amount to be liable on Pesach, (...
Kirk's user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
135 views

Earning money on Shabbat for permitted behavior?

If somebody gets a Heter from a rabbi or posek to do something on Shabbat that is normally forbidden for pikuach nefesh (such as being a police officer, firefighter, etc.) are they allowed to earn ...
Kirk's user avatar
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2 votes
3 answers
285 views

What does Halacha say about human shields

What is the Torah approach to when terrorists are using civilians as human shields? Are you allowed to bomb the building?
Josh's user avatar
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3 votes
2 answers
364 views

Can one pretend to sin in order to save his life?

If someone is attempting to coerce a Jew into committing a sin publicly - aside from the three major sins - and his desire is just that he should violate the Torah - not for a personal gain - would he ...
שלום's user avatar
  • 3,272
2 votes
1 answer
342 views

Must one give up his life in order to avoid performing an abortion?

According to Halacha, abortion is forbidden, but not punishable by death like a full fledged murder, so would one still be obligated to give up his life in order to avoid doing it, or do we say that ...
שלום's user avatar
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3 votes
2 answers
477 views

Putting one's own life first - exceptions?

There is a famous Bava Metzia 62a paskens that in a case where there are two people and there is only enough water for one to survive, the owner of the water drinks it and lets the other die: ורבי ...
Rabbi Kaii's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers
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Why did שמואל הנביא need permission to save his own life?

In יבמות ס״ה,ב׳ it brings the story of when Hashem told שמואל הנביא to go and anoint דויד, and שמואל asked Hashem what he should do in order not to arouse Shaul’s suspicion, thereby endangering his ...
שלום's user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
1k views

What if someone needs to paint on shabbat because it helps them from life threatening depression? Art Therapy

I heard shabbat can be violated if it's to save a life, such as in cases where a doctor needs to heal a patient. But what if it's an licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor/Art therapist? Let's say ...
Jewish Art's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
168 views

Is one culpable for transgressing shabbos if he is having a mental breakdown

Over the years I've heard and seen people who were smoking on shabbos, but I noticed they were clearly having a mental breakdown. I would say maybe even outwardly displaying suicidal emotions. Are ...
yosefkorn's user avatar
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0 answers
108 views

Is it true that abortion is allowed if it endangers the mother's mental health?

I heard this and it makes no sense because then almost every mother would have the excuse to abort; What would the exact parameters of such mental health issues be?
acefromspace's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
227 views

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett's trip to Moscow on Shabbat to meet Putin

I am an Italian ben Noach. We have all seen that Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett went to Moscow on Shabbat to meet Putin. I believe that, since this trip has been functional to find a solution ...
Amos74's user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers
294 views

Questions on a story about Hillel

It is always possible to pick on even the most inspirational stories, but hopefully in doing so we end up learning something. The Talmud relates this story: Hillel the Elder worked every day to earn ...
Maurice Mizrahi's user avatar
6 votes
0 answers
170 views

Have electric cars been suggested for those who respond to emergencies on Shabbos?

In a nutshell – and I know this is complicated – the Mishna says that some rabbinic prohibitions were lifted to make life easier on emergency responders after they've provided their assistance on ...
Shalom's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
97 views

Why was the "fence of the roof" chosen to represent common danger?

I did some research regarding ancient structures, and it appears that at the time of the conquest (15th century BCE, Bronze age) there were no multi-story structures in Israel (or Canaan cultures). ...
Al Berko's user avatar
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2 votes
2 answers
200 views

Is killing a robber by shooting first considered murder?

Apologies if this has already been answered : If someone comes up to you on the street waving a gun and demanding your money and you immediately draw your concealed weapon and shoot and kill them, is ...
cdog1351's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
95 views

Would cryogenic freezing while still alive be permissible?

As answered here and here, halachic death is defined as an irreversible heart [and/or respiration, and/or brain] cessation. If so, would cryogenically freezing someone while they're still alive1 be ...
user9806's user avatar
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4 votes
1 answer
307 views

How can heart transplants be permitted?

Are there authorities who hold that a stopped heart constitutes halachic death, but yet permit heart transplants? Stopping and taking out the recipient's heart would seem to be technically considered ...
user9806's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
80 views

Revisit of the trolley problem: High victim imbalance [duplicate]

I would like to revisit the trolley problem. A trolley on a track is out of control and headed to a place where the crash will kill 4 people. You can flip a switch and put it on a different track ...
Maurice Mizrahi's user avatar
4 votes
0 answers
91 views

Venishmartem Halachic guidelines regarding large gathering of Jews

Following the horrible tragedy at Miron, where 45 Jews lost their lives in a stampede, I wondered that large-scale religious gatherings are very indeed very frequent, especially in Hassidic ...
Al Berko's user avatar
  • 26k
1 vote
1 answer
175 views

When it comes to making Kiddush, what's recommended for someone who is allergic to grapes?

I recently was reading about allergies and discovered examples of where individuals could experience anaphylaxis from ingesting grapes and grape derivatives. I was curious as to what the protocol is ...
Michael's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
214 views

In a life or death situation is breaking the Torah permissible?

In a situation where you could die (or other Jews could), would you be allowed to break the rules in order to survive?
Adam49's user avatar
  • 97
5 votes
1 answer
96 views

Do the righteous care too much for their possessions?

The Torah says: Jacob was left alone. [Genesis 32:25] The Talmud adds: Why was he left alone? Because he remained to retrieve some small jugs. From here we derive that the possessions of the ...
Maurice Mizrahi's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
1k views

Was it David's custom to go into battle without an armour?

Shmuel I 17:38-39: וַיַּלְבֵּ֨שׁ שָׁא֚וּל אֶת־דָּוִד֙ מַדָּ֔יו וְנָתַ֛ן ק֥וֹבַע נְח֖שֶׁת עַל־רֹאשׁ֑וֹ וַיַּלְבֵּ֥שׁ אֹת֖וֹ שִׁרְיֽוֹן. וַיַּחְגֹּ֣ר דָּוִ֣ד אֶת־חַ֠רְבּוֹ מֵעַ֨ל לְמַדָּ֜יו וַיֹּ֣אֶל ...
ninamag's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
127 views

Is there a price too high to pay to prevent secularization in COVID times?

I realize that the closure of Yeshivos has a huge negative impact on Haredi Bachurim, many of my friends complain that since the boys came home, they went "out-of-sync", don't wake up to ...
Al Berko's user avatar
  • 26k
1 vote
1 answer
208 views

What is the source for non-literal understanding of V'Chai Bahem?

The concept of V'Chai Bahem - "do the mitzvos to live by them" (Vayikra 18:5) - is usually understood to refer to one's physical existence (i.e. the mitzvos should not be performed if they ...
user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
224 views

What is the criteria of safek pikuach nefesh?

An expert in a particular field (a doctor, an actuary, etc.) can advise on the risk of mortality from a specific activity of anywhere between 0% and 100%. At what threshold of risk would the halacha ...
user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
314 views

What are the parameters of shomer pesaim Hashem?

While the Torah forbids one to place himself into a situation of danger, some degree of slightly risky behavior is allowable under the concept of shomer pesaim Hashem. Are the parameters of this ...
user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
329 views

Why is Tzaara'as considered a Sakana?

The Shulchan Aruch in Orach Chaim 173:2 writes: בין בשר לדגים חובה ליטול משום דקשה לדבר אחר וחמירא סכנתא מאיסורא There is an obligation to wash one's hands between fish and meat because it causes &...
Eliyahu's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
111 views

Can one volunteer to be put in a situation which will require breaking shabbos?

I know that pikuach nefesh, saving a life, can push off Shabbat (which I understand to mean, can excuse breaking rules on Shabbat). If I am one of a group of Jews who could do the life saving, should ...
rosends's user avatar
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2 votes
2 answers
454 views

Would marriage really not solve this man's problem?

Another question on pikuach nefesh. The Talmud [Sanhedrin 75a] recounts this story: There was an incident involving a certain man who set his eyes upon a certain woman and passion rose in his heart [...
Maurice Mizrahi's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
270 views

Are you allowed to risk dying to save others?

I would like some clarification about the risks of trying to save someone's life by breaking a commandment, or pikuach nefesh. In Bava Metzia 62a, Rabbi Akiva ruled that your life has priority over ...
Maurice Mizrahi's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
121 views

Timing of pikuach nefesh

What is the halacha on how imminent the danger of death has to be for you to be allowed to invoke pikuach nefesh and break a commandment to save a life? Obviously if someone is drowning before your ...
Maurice Mizrahi's user avatar
3 votes
0 answers
135 views

Are you liable for infecting others?

The Talmud says: One who injures another becomes liable for five things: damages, pain, medical expenses, incapacitation, and mental anguish. [Bava Kamma 83b] It does not spell out HOW or WHY the ...
Maurice Mizrahi's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
61 views

Jewish life during the times of the Black Death [closed]

I'm looking for any sources (if possible maybe even first-hand written accounts) of how Jews who lived in Western Europe at that time handled this particular period. Anything goes, matter of fact ...
user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
74 views

Pikuach nefesh and matzoh shopping [closed]

Apropos of this viral post: https://twitter.com/Dr_Ophelian/status/1247386646317633536. My understanding is that the principle of pikuach nefesh is not applied like this, but I am not certain why. ...
user4497063's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
236 views

Does the COVID19 epidemic in NYC qualify as "Dever B'ir - a Plague in the City"?

Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chaim, 576) defines dever r"l or pestilence as an epidemic killing 3 people in 3 days (not 3 people in 4 days; not 3 people in 2 days) for a city of 500 working age men. How is ...
Naftali Tzvi's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
43 views

What is the difference between a sickness and a plague?

Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chaim, Siman 576) discusses fasting and praying for Dever (a plague), and also for a sickness (choli). What is the difference between sickness and plague?
Naftali Tzvi's user avatar
  • 1,748
5 votes
1 answer
256 views

Chayecha Kodmin - Your own life comes first for countries

Although I am loath to ask a Covid 19 related question, one particular current debate caught my attention. Most readers are probably aware of the gemara in Bava Metzia 62a where we find the rule one ...
user6591's user avatar
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2 votes
3 answers
292 views

If having a beard is potentially dangerous to life, should a Jew shave it off?

There are reports that men with beards may have problems using face masks effectively or getting hooked up to a ventilator correctly. Given the danger posed by the COVID-19 virus, should Jewish men ...
Mike's user avatar
  • 5,435
2 votes
1 answer
162 views

Who can invoke pikuach nefesh?

In today's news (18 March 2020), the Sephardic Chief Rabbi of Israel ruled that Jews may use their cellphones on Shabbat to receive developments and alerts regarding the coronavirus. This is an ...
Maurice Mizrahi's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
73 views

The Heinz Dilemma in Halacha [duplicate]

A famous Kohlberg dilemma goes something like this: Heinz’s wife is dying and there’s a drug that may be able to save her. Jack cannot afford the drug. Can Heinz steal the drug to treat his wife? ...
LN6595's user avatar
  • 5,370
0 votes
1 answer
151 views

Was Nazi sadism a case of "surrender your life if they're trying to stamp out religion"?

The Gemara Sanhedrin 74b reads: נכרי דאמר ליה להאי ישראל קטול אספסתא בשבתא ושדי לחיותא ואי לא קטילנא לך ליקטיל ולא לקטליה שדי לנהרא ליקטליה ולא ליקטול מ"ט לעבורי מילתא קא בעי If a non-Jew tells ...
Shalom's user avatar
  • 133k
2 votes
1 answer
87 views

What are the time parameters of "pikuach nefesh" on Shabbos?

This article says: Any procedure which is necessary to perform for the patient, but it is clear that it does not at all need to be performed on Shabbat, should be delayed until after Shabbat. How ...
user9806's user avatar
  • 2,256
5 votes
1 answer
2k views

Making a pikuach nefesh phone call on Yom Kippur - mitzva or something to be avoided?

Outside of our synagogue on Yom Kippur, someone fainted and a doctor present decided to call an ambulance. At that time, there were multiple people present and one phone. Should people have jumped to ...
mbloch's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
18 views

Is one allowed to endanger his life for learning Torah like Hillel did?

The famous story about Hillel's devotion to Torah learning, in Yoma 25b, tells that Hillel endangered his life by trying to listen to Shmayah and Avtalyon in extremely cold weather until he fell ...
Al Berko's user avatar
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