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 Terumah

How should one discard a muktze item?

In the previous shiur we discussed removing an item from one's pocket and the problems of hanacha (depositing) in the street. We stated that one must deposit the item b'shinui, i.e. in a backhanded manner in order to circumvent direct hanacha.

When the item is muktze one may not handle it when removing it from one's pocket, rather the pocket must be turned out and the item dropped.

Does a shirt with money in a pocket become muktze?

This is part of a subject called basis l'davar ha'assur, (translated as the “base of/for a muktze item”) and explained as follows:

Several conditions must be met for an item to become a áñéñ, which, aside from the significant issues, we will postpone from discussing at this time.

A muktze item willingly left in a certain place (with the intention of it remaining there for the entire bein hashmashos-twilight) renders the item it is placed in, to be muktze. [1] Consequently therefore, money or a purse with money in a pocket will render the pocket muktze when one knew and intended for the muktze item to be there over Shabbos. (An insignificant amount of money is batel to the shirt and does not make it a 'base').

This relates to a weekday jacket or trousers where one knowingly leaves money there during the week intending it to be there on Shabbos.

Money placed during the week in a Shabbos jacket that was not removed before Shabbos does not render the pocket muktze, because it was not the intention to leave the money there over Shabbos.

In other words, a weekday shirt or jacket with money in the pocket can be muktze?

Normally yes, but this depends on the type of pocket.

A shirt pocket is comprised of a piece of cloth sewn onto the front of the shirt where the shirt serves as the backing. Placing a muktze item in a shirt pocket, when the 'base’ conditions are met, will render the shirt a ‘base’, being that the muktze item rests on the shirt. [2] Such a shirt adopts the status of the muktze item, and if money is in the pocket, the shirt may not be moved for any reason.

This will apply to all garments with a shirt-like pocket when the muktze item was intended to be there on Shabbos.

What is the other type of pocket?

A pocket whose lip is sewn onto a garment when the pocket is a separate entity, such as trouser and jacket pockets, will not render the garment muktze. [3] When conforming to the conditions of ‘base’ the pocket will become a ‘base’ and muktze, but the garment will not. As a result one may not insert one's hand in the muktze pocket but the garment may be moved for whatever is needed. Nevertheless, if possible, one must first shake out the muktze.

May I handle the shirt with the muktze item inside?

When possible, the muktze item must be removed from the pocket by turning the garment upside down. One may not handle the pocket itself to turn it upside down as it is muktze. [4]

Even when the garment is not a ‘base”, such as when the conditions to create a ‘base’ do not apply (a Shabbos jacket), or when the nature of the pocket will not render the garment muktze, one may not handle the garment unnecessarily. [5]

If one does not want to shake out the muktze for one of the following reasons:

  • it will get lost or ruined, [6]
  • one is wearing the garment in public and is embarrassed to remove it,
  • one is uncomfortable to shake muktze in public,

one may continue to a side room and shake the muktze from the pocket.

May I move hazardous items out of harms way?

Obviously if the item is not muktze it is permitted. The problem arises when the item is muktze, for example, a glass smashed onto the kitchen floor and people are present.

The Rama writes [7] that broken glass may be handled and removed from harm's way, because Chazal did not introduce restrictions in the face of danger. [8] It is not necessary to use a dustpan in order to avoid handling the muktze directly, as the g'zeira (edict) of muktze does not apply in this instance.

If however the shards are not hazardous, such as clay or earthen shards, one may not handle them directly, but one may move them out of the way with one's body (tiltul b'gufo) [9] or with a broom etc. [10]

What if the hazardous item is outside in the street?

Even then it may be handled and moved out of harm's way. We still face the problem of carrying something in a reshus harabim, which can result in a biblical prohibition. The Shulchan Aruch states in such an event [11] that one may carry the item, but must stop every 'less than four amos' in order to avoid the issur d'oraisso. In a carmelis (a domain where carrying is only ossur mid'rabanan – rabbinically prohibited) one may carry it out of harm's way without stopping every four amos. The heter is based on the above rule, that Chazal do not introduce edicts in the probability of injury, and carrying in a carmelis and 'less than four amos' is only ossur mid'rabanan.

May one move a rock located on the sidewalk?

A rock poses potential damage for anyone who does not notice it and it may be moved out of harm's way. Halachically one may handle the rock directly, as per above, but if one has doubts whether it really poses a threat one should move it with one's foot. Thus nothing has been compromised.

[1] See SS"K 20:50-56.

[2] M"B simon 309:29, SS"K 20:70-72.

[3] M"B and SS"K ibid.

[4] SS"K 20:71.

[6] See SS"K 20:47.

[7] Simon 308:6.

[8] See simon 308:18.

[9] M"B simon 308:30.

[10] Tiltul min hatzad (the broom) l'tzorech davar hamutar (a clean floor).

[11] Simon 308:18.


Food For Thought

What are the conditions to form a basis l'davar ha'assur?

Answers coming be"H next week.

Vort on the Parsha

The Keruvim, whose faces resembled children who had not tasted sin, spread their wings heavenwards as a sign of their great closeness to spirituality. Nevertheless, the possuk says they faced each other - 'u'pneihem ish el achiv' – demonstrating that regardless of one's own disassociation to worldly matters, one must be attuned to one's fellowman's needs. (Ta'am Ve'da'as).

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.