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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3 votes
2 answers
324 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 &...
2 votes
1 answer
476 views

Saving a non-Jew from drowning

Some Boston-area yeshivah students recently saved a man from drowning who they didn't know was a Nazi supporter. In a comment on the story, someone claimed that the Halakhah (i.e. Jewish law) says to ...
2 votes
1 answer
75 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 ...
3 votes
1 answer
129 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 ...
4 votes
2 answers
187 views

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 ...
0 votes
2 answers
140 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
1 vote
1 answer
67 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. ...
9 votes
2 answers
311 views

How much effort should be expended searching for the missing?

Say a Jewish person gets pulled out to sea while rescuing someone from drowning and goes missing, lost at sea. And then a search for him or his body by the Jewish community, supplementing official ...
4 votes
1 answer
306 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 ...
4 votes
5 answers
299 views

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 ...
3 votes
2 answers
512 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 ...
1 vote
1 answer
65 views

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, (...
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 ...
2 votes
3 answers
273 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?
9 votes
1 answer
240 views

Who is pulled to safety first?

If a group of people are in mortal danger, all of the same gender (cf. Horayot 13a; some suggest that the Mishnah on Horayot is not discussing a case of rescuing from physical danger, cf. Tziz Eliezer ...
3 votes
2 answers
361 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 ...
2 votes
1 answer
334 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 ...
3 votes
2 answers
425 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 ...
6 votes
1 answer
323 views

Birkas Hamitzvah on food which is normally assur, but allowed due to pikuach nefesh

From Making a bracha on food which is normally assur, but allowed due to pikuach nefesh, if you eat normally forbidden foods because of pikuach nefesh, you make a bracha on them. Does the same apply ...
3 votes
1 answer
200 views

Two people but only one kidney

if there are two patients about to die of kidney failure and there is only one kidney available, does the halacha have a way to choose who gets the kidney? (such as lottery) (assuming both cases are ...
0 votes
1 answer
158 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 ...
0 votes
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?
4 votes
1 answer
385 views

How to say Tefilas HaDerech while on the road alone

My question applies to circumstances in which one is driving an extended distance by oneself. They also apply primarily--though not exclusively--to people who do not have the Tefilos HaDerech ...
2 votes
2 answers
450 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 [...
4 votes
1 answer
226 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 ...
6 votes
2 answers
293 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 ...
2 votes
2 answers
196 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 ...
6 votes
0 answers
164 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 ...
6 votes
3 answers
315 views

Yaakov's Stone Pillow

Yaakov placed twelve stones around his head (Bereishis 28:11) to protect him from animals (refer to Rashi). Why was he not scared that animals would attack the rest of his body and how would those ...
11 votes
1 answer
495 views

"Torturing for Information" in Halacha

Would torture to extract information to save lives (eg in the Ticking time bomb case) be permitted according to Judaism? What's the status of torture in Halacha? And if it is permitted in certain ...
1 vote
1 answer
107 views

Can a Beit-Din force a Jew to save another Jew's life?

A Jew that's terminally ill R"l, and the only treatment is through a bone marrow transplant. He has a very special type of blood (this is not a biological question). So theoretically and ...
2 votes
1 answer
89 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). ...
1 vote
0 answers
94 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 ...
30 votes
2 answers
697 views

Rockets from Gaza while praying

I live in Israel where there are presently (late 2012) ongoing rockets fired at us from Gaza. We are warned of an impending rocket by a loud siren that gives us less than a minute to run to a bomb ...
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 ...
4 votes
0 answers
90 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 ...
1 vote
1 answer
162 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 ...
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 ...
0 votes
2 answers
124 views

Why did those on the ship ignore what Yona told them?

If those on the ship asked (Yonah 1:11) and Yonah answered (1:12) as far as how to save them, why did they ignore his suggestion (1:13)?
2 votes
1 answer
212 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?
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 ...
1 vote
0 answers
126 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 ...
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 ...
1 vote
1 answer
181 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 ...
2 votes
2 answers
307 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 ...
7 votes
2 answers
383 views

Can I defend my animals with lethal force?

We know that it is permitted, in self-defense, to kill one who is trying to kill you, and I have heard that this applies to other people too (I see someone trying to kill someone else and I intervene)....
2 votes
0 answers
216 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 ...
11 votes
1 answer
2k views

How hungry does a Jew have to be to eat non-kosher food?

I understand that Jews are allowed to eat non-kosher food in order to save their lives, source Sanhedrin 74a. My question is, how long does a Jew have to be deprived of food, before he or she is ...
0 votes
0 answers
101 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 ...
13 votes
2 answers
1k views

Self-defense in a street fight?

I was in a situation where someone basically approached me indicating he was going to fight me, squared up with me, stared me down etc. pushed me twice, and then I thought to myself, "If he raises a ...

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