shabbos candles

The Shabbos Weekly
Halachos Series on Hilchos Shabbos

shabbos candles

Published by
Pirchei Shoshanim

A Project of
The Shema Yisrael Torah Network

Based on the Shiurim Given by

Rabbi Dovid
Ostroff, shlita

developed from the Chabura of the
Pirchei Shoshanim Shulchan Aruch Learning Project

These Halachos were shown by Rabbi Ostroff to
HaGaon HaRav Moshe Sternbuch, shlita



Questions for the Week of Parshas Beshalach

May I walk past a detector that turns on a security light in the street?

We learned in the previous sheet that if the result is not required and one does not modify one’s performance in any way to bring about the result, it is permitted. (We prefaced this by saying that these are complex matters and a rav must be asked).

Consequently one would be permitted to walk in front of such a device.

However, turning on a light involves hav’arah, which is a d’oraisso according to all opinions. Also, in a dark or semi dark street one might enjoy the added light and possibly consider this a desired action, which compounds the problem.

One therefore should attempt to walk around the sensor and not turn on the light.

What happens if I find money in my pocket on Shabbos?

If this happens outside in the street it involves two problems, muktze and carrying. If it happens indoors it only involves muktze. We will first deal be”H with muktze.

What is the halacha when one raises muktze in a prohibited manner? Must it be discarded or may it be placed somewhere else?

We find a machlokes between the Magen Avraham and the Vilna Ga’on. The Magen Avraham [1] learns that since it is already on his person he may take it to wherever he wants. This is true even though it was not on his person in a permitted manner, e.g. one sees a hammer on the floor and without thinking lifts it and then realizes that this was an issur.

The Vilna Ga’on argues [2] saying that one may only continue with muktze when it was lifted in a permitted manner and in the ‘hammer example’ one would have to immediately put it down.

Do you have an example of a permitted manner?

Lifting a k’li she’mlachto l’issur [3] in order to use it, or if the place it occupies is needed, it is permitted and once in one’s hand it may be placed wherever.

So in the above case where you find money on your person?

The Magen Avraham says that one may walk to any room in the house being that it is already in one’s possession and the Vilna Ga’on learns  that it must be discarded then and there.

But what if it would cause a loss to leave it in the dining room?

The Rama writes [4] that one who discovers a purse on one’s person may walk to any room and drop it there. The Mishna Berura ad loco [5] cites the machlokes between the Magen Avraham and the Vilna Ga’on and says that in case of loss it is possible that the Vilna Ga’on would agree that one may walk to a secure room and drop the money there.

The bottom line is to be stringent (according to the Mishna Berura) but when it involves a loss one may walk to a room and drop it there. [6]

Isn’t there a difference between a purse, wallet and money?

Money is muktze machmas gufo, on a par with sticks and stones and may not be carried for any use whatsoever. A purse and wallet are keilim (items), which ideally are not muktze but money placed in them before Shabbos transforms them into a basis l’davar ha’assur (a base to the muktze) and adopts the status of the muktze. Consequently they share the same status. [7]

How must I remove the money from my pocket?

One is tempted to think that since one is ‘carrying’ it in any case it would be permitted to handle it directly and remove it from one’s pocket and place it wherever. And yet the Rama writes that when entering the room one wishes to deposit the purse one should open one’s belt and let the purse drop. This implies that one may not handle the actual purse.

Indeed Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach writes that carrying muktze on one’s person is far better than carrying it in one’s hand. Accordingly it is ossur to handle it directly and remove it with one’s hand; rather one must shake the purse from the pocket. This is partly based on the Shulchan Aruch HaRav [8] who writes that carrying it on one’s body is not called tiltul (carrying) muktze, which is another reason to permit walking to a room and dropping it there.

However, Rav Shlomo Zalman limits this saying [9] that when it is normal to carry it on one’s person or in a pocket it is not called tiltul b’gufo (carrying on one’s person) and is comparable to carrying in one’s hand.

One should therefore shake the muktze from one’s pocket and not handle it.

[1] Simon 266:19.

[2] Simon 266:16.

[3] An item that is muktze because it is used for prohibited purposes, such as a pen or hammer.

[4] Simon 266:12.

[5] Simon 266:35.

[6] See also SS”K 20:72.

[7] The Bi’ur Halacha in simon 266:12 refers to a case where money was forgotten inside a purse, in which case the purse is not a bosis.

[8] Simon 266:19.

[9] SS”K 20 footnote 244. See also the tikunim umilu’im.


Food For Thought

What if the purse is found on one’s person when in the street?

Does the shirt with money in a pocket become muktze?

May I move hazardous items out of harms way?

Are there any restrictions as how to move it?

Answers coming be"H next week.

Vort on the Parsha

The possuk says that if you listen to the voice of Hashem and do that which is right in His eyes, listen to His mitzvos and uphold his chukim (laws), all the illness placed in Mitzrayim will not be placed upon you because I am Hashem your healer (15:26).

The Av Beis Din of Ponivez explained that one administers medicine prescribed by a doctor without understanding the purpose of each medicine and the benefit derived from each, in the knowledge that it is the correct thing to do. Hashem tells us that we must emulate that and do that which is right in His eyes even though we might not fathom it. Likewise we are to uphold his chukim, mitzvos that we have no understanding of. The reward is that we will not be ill, as Hashem is our healer – doctor who knows what is best for his "patients".

For a printed version, click here.



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Note:  The purpose of this series is intended solely for the clarification of the topics discussed and not to render halachic decisions. It is intended to heighten everyone's awareness of important practical questions which do arise on this topic.  One must consult with a proper halachic authority in order to receive p'sak.