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9

A "mezuzah" as we use the term is made up of 2 items -- the parchment inside and the case which the rest of the world sees. While we often spend time and money trying to get a nice case -- something pretty, and worthy of being shown off (or durable, depending on which door you are putting it on) the case is almost irrelevant. The essence is the parchment ...


9

This is actually addressed by the Chida in his Birkei Yosef 286:3. He brings the Bais Hillel(not to be confused with Bais Hillel from the gemara) who holds that a jail is not a dwelling of honor,so would be patur from a mezuzah. He also brings a proof from the gemara Yoma 10b which seems to imply that a jail would not require a mezuzah. The Chida himself ...


8

In Shulchan Aruch (YD Siman 286:4) it says that a bathroom and bathhouse etc. are exempt from Mezuzah because they are not made for Diras Kavod (respectable living quarters). In Shu"t Minchas Yitzchok (4:89-90) he adds that if they (bathroom etc.) are not used for anything that would obligate them to have a Mezuzah (i.e. some people use a bathroom to store ...


8

Two additional thoughts in addition to rosends's answer Many doors in the house need a mezuza (see here for details) - I realize it might sound a bit daunting if you are "just starting" but "no one should ignore the law" - the main door of the house should be the first one to start with A second trusted online source is stam.net - both them and Hasofer (...


8

There does not appear to be a Talmudic source that explicitly states that every room in a house requires it's own mezuzah. Rambam, however, does explicitly state this: Hilchot Mezuzah 6:10 חדר שבבית אפילו חדר בחדר חייב לעשות מזוזה על שער החדר הפנימי ועל שער החדר החיצון ועל שער הבית שכולן עשויין לדירה וקבועין When there is a separate room in a ...


8

Fantastic Question! Yoma 11b asks this exact question, and answers that it does not require a Mezuzah: יכול שאני מרבה אף הר הבית והלשכות והעזרות ת"ל בית מה בית שהוא חול אף כל שהוא חול יצאו אלו שהן קודש I might have thought that I include in the obligation of mezuza even the Temple Mount and its chambers and courtyards. Therefore, the verse states: ...


8

R Gersion Appel here answers your question A Jew who is serving a sentence does not require a mezuza on his prison cell, as it is not deemed a respectable residence and it is unlikely that he would consider it his permanent dwelling. This is based on Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 11:14 A house that is not designated for permanent dwelling does not require ...


7

The primary source for the orientation of the words of the Mezuzah is a cryptic Yerushalmi (Megillah 4:12) which states: ר' זעורא בשם שמואל צריך שיהא שמע שלה רואה את הפתח R' Ze'ura [said] in the name of Shemuel: [the Mezuzah] needs to be such that its 'Shema' sees the opening. For Rashi (Menachot 33a sv כמין), Rambam (Hilchot Mezuzah 5:8), and the ...


7

As one can see from my answer to the question Can a Mezuzah be given to a respectable and trustworthy non-Jew?, there are definitely those that hold there is no problem giving a Mezuza to a non Jew, so long they will respect it properly. This sounds like your case and therefore you are not breaking the law. However for a proper ruling it is best to ask a ...


7

It definitely does look like a mezuzah cover. The sure way to find out is to unscrew or pry it open. If you can unscrew or pry off the cover and find a parchment inside, you've pretty much confirmed things. I've lived in NYC for my entire life. If you walk around looking at many apartment buildings esp. in former mainly Jewish NYC neighborhoods such as ...


7

I found a new and unusual source. R Ephraim Oshry was the Rav of the Kovno ghetto during the second world war and one of the few European rabbis to survive the Shoah. He published a set of responsa written during the war, in terribly difficult circumstances (published in English as Responsa from the Holocaust but long out of print, for some reason the French ...


6

The reason a Mezuza is placed on an angle is due to a Machlokes - Taz - Yorah Deah 289:6 between Rashi and Rabbeinu Tam. Rashi holds it should be placed vertically and Rabbeinu Tam holds it should be placed horizontally. Per Sefer Yashar V'Tov quoting the Rosh in Menachos 33 אבל ברא"ש פירוש דלר"ת אתי לאשמועינן שתהא שיטה אחרונה לצד רשות הרבים ...


6

In the Mishna Torah (Rambam), laws of mezuzah, chapter 1 sections 9 and 10 clearly state that a mezuzah should be written on duchsustus (the flesh side of the animals skin), and that if it's on klaf (the side of the skin where the hair grew) or gvil (a full piece of skin before it's divided into klaf and duchsustus) it's acceptable. In any event, it must be ...


6

Kitzur Shulchan Aruch Yalkut Yosef (Orach Chayim 690:5) quotes from the Shut Lev Hayim (of R. Hayim Phalakhi) that one does not fast after a mezuzah has fallen on the floor, because it has a lower level of holiness than tefillin, and as R. Yosef points out there, even the custom to fast when tefillin or Sifrei Torah fall is not sourced in Shas. My ...


6

From Aish.com When a Jew and non-Jew share a house, each having his own designated room or area, then a mezuzah is not posted on the common doorway. (Rama Y.D. 286:1 with Pitchei Teshuva 3)


6

As Sam commented, the Kitzur Shulchan Aruch (11:1) addresses a nearly identical question: אך אם יש איזה פתח שאינו עשוי אלא להכניס דרך שם איזה משא לפרקים ויש שם פתח אחר לכניסה ויציאה, אזי הפתח העשוי רק להכניס משאות, פטור If there is a doorway that is only used to occasionally bring in items and there is another doorway that is used for both ...


6

It is a Mezuzah case. It is not considered a mezuza by itself, if inside there is a kosher mezuza scroll then that is a mezzuza (I recommend taking is down and getting the scroll checked by a soffer It is very small That is not a problem. (as long and the letters on the parchment can be seen with the naked eye) The lettering seems off Those letters might be ...


6

Rabbi Kaganoff says that the point is not that it is mobile but how it is used. That is, it appears that even if he drives around in it, if he lives in it permanently he should put up a mezuzah (though possibly without a bracha). It appears that the reason is that its purpose is to provide a dwelling. On the other hand, a car, whose purpose is transportation,...


6

No. the Torah says the Mezuza belongs on the doorpost. A Mezuza belongs on the doorposts - on the top third of the right-hand-side when walking in - and only once the house is ready to be lived in. Putting a Kosher Mezuza in the foundations would be problematic since a Mezuza has holiness and burying it in the foundations is not a respectable place for it.


5

There are several opinions on the forms of the letters themselves. If your ancestry hails from Yemen, they have their own distinctive script. If you have Hassidic/Kabbalistic roots (or leanings), then Ktav Ari is optimized for you. (There is a tension in the letters that represents the tension in the universe we have to correct; e.g. the Chet is assymetric, ...


5

There is an inyan that one should not buy STaM from someone who is not a certified sofer. Someone could have a talent for checking, buying, and selling STaM without being really good at writing them. Such a person could have qualified as a sofer on the strength of his knowledge of halachos while only possessing limited skill at (or interest in) the ...


5

Mor U'Ketziya Orach Chaim 21 - right side - column beginning ואין זו תשובה נצחת says that a door made like a Kippa does not require a Mezuza. Pischei Shearim - page 238 mentions that even if a doorway is rounded from the bottom there are those that say it does not require a Mezuza. Thus there are those who would say a completely round doorway would not ...


5

This is a Machloket in the Talmud (Yoma 10) and the Halakha (ShA YD 286:11) follows the Chakhamim there that a Sukkah is exempt as it is a temporary dwelling. The Arukh haShulchan (YD 286:27) writes that this is not true of Sukkot made in rooms that one lives in all year, and such Sukkot are still obligated to have a Mezuzah. On the other hand, the Mishna ...


5

Shulchan Aruch YD 286, 11 said that the house which is in a boat is Patur: סוכת החג בחג והבית שבספינה והחנויות שבשוקים -- פטורים.‏ Aruch Hashulchan added (paragraph 27): וכן יראה לי הך דבית שבספינה, זהו כשעשו בית עראי בספינה. אבל בספינות שלנו שיש בהם בתים קבועים, וגם בספינות ההולכות על הנהרות שיש בכל ספינה בית קבוע וקורין לה קאיוט"א – חייבת במזוזה, ...


5

This is called שרטוט Sirtut. A Mezuzah without Sirtut is invalid (ShA YD 288:8). Tefillin need Sirtut on just the top line (or others say top, bottom and both margins), assuming the Sofer can maintain straight lines throughout even without the Sirtut (ShA OC 32:6). A Sefer Torah as well as all books of Tanakh need Sirtut (ShA YD 284:1) including a ...


5

R. Ovadyah Yosef (Yabia Omer VIII YD 30) discusses the topic and raises your issue from Rambam's description of the point of the encounter with Mezuzah. He points out the language of both Rambam and SA and their sources in Bavli (Menachos 31b and Rashi there) and Yerushalmi (Megillah 4:12; see Tos. to Menachos 33a "Ha") which communicate the practice of ...


5

I have worked as a Sofer Stam for many years and learned and researched these issues, both for my customers' sakes and for my own knowledge. Here is what I have discovered: Each room is its own mitzva. The Talmud and the Rambam use the term בית which would usually indicate an entire dwelling rather than a room, but during the time of the Mishna most ...


5

I think you are asking an interesting question on the definition and limits of כל ישראל ערבים זה בזה -- all Jews are responsible for one another. I didn't find it addressed anywhere so let me try to offer an approach: there are at least two sources in the gemara that discuss arvut between Jews, one in a positive context, one in a negative one. Rosh ...


5

It is important to ask these questions to a rabbi, and to send pictures if asking remotely, as small details can have important consequences. In general, if there is no space on the doorpost, one can drill into it (and I saw new appartments in Israel where every mezuza was drilled into the doorposts - some prefer it this way halachically). OU writes ...


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