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Weekly Shabbos Halacha Series
Halachos Series on Hilchos Shabbos

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Published by
Pirchei Shoshanim

A Project of
The Shema Yisrael Torah Network

Written by

Rabbi Dovid
Ostroff, shlita


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



Questions for the Week of Ki Savo


Hilchos Borer continued.

Am I permitted to sort the cutlery, i.e. knives with knives forks with forks when washing the dishes on Friday night?

            Subsequent to washing silverware one usually places them into a compartment for them to dry. Since this arrangement is a complete mixture, it is Borer to sort each item into its own compartment, or to set the table on Friday night for the Shabbos day. [1]

In many institutions waiters clean the tables after the Friday night meal and subsequently set the tables for the following morning.  Sorting cutlery in this case is Borer and Jews may not do this. Gentiles may sort the cutlery Friday night for the Shabbos meal, because there is a permitted way to do it, i.e. Shabbos morning before the meal, and they are merely sorting them Friday night for their convenience, so as not to have to rise early on Shabbos morning. [2]

            Am I permitted to remove each piece blindly from the mixture and then place it into its compartment?

            No, because the purpose of your removing the silverware is to sort them out.

            How then can they be sorted and placed in their respective compartments?

            There are two answers. The first is that it is not a calamity if they are not sorted out on Friday night. The second solution is to blindly remove each item from the drying compartment in order to dry it, and once in ones hand it may be placed in its respective compartment. [3] This is permitted because the intention is not to organize the silverware rather to dry them. [4] If the sole purpose is to organize the silverware it is forbidden.

            Children playing board games on Shabbos: when are they permitted to sort the pieces, cards etc. and when are they not permitted to do so?

            If the cards, chess pieces etc. are in a mixture and one wishes to set up the game, one may do so, because this is sorting immediately prior to use. It is forbidden to do so if one does not intend playing right away. After the game, it is forbidden to place each piece in its proper place, because one is sorting for later.

A beautiful question was raised with regards to certain card games: [5] certain card games prescribe that one discard a card from a bunch of cards in ones hand. Is that action not one of removing the psoles from the ochel? If another player automatically takes it, it would be permitted, but if discarded until the end of the game it is a problem. Various Talmidei Chachamim offered beautiful answers but concluded that since Borer is a melacha doraisso, a biblical offense, one should refrain from doing it. [6] Since this opinion is revolutionary, I suggest one ask a posek as to the correct conduct.

            The Halachos of Squeezing Fruit on Shabbos

Is one permitted to squeeze fruit on Shabbos?

One of the melachos of Shabbos is Dash , which is separating wheat grain from its husk. A Toladah (a derivative, but also a melacha doraisso) of this melacha is Mefareik . Quite a few prohibitions fall under this category, such as milking a cow (Rambam), drawing blood [7] and others.

The prohibition pertaining to us is squeezing fruit for its juices. Extracting the juice from a fruit is similar to the removing of a wheat grain from its encasing husk and hence it is a Toladah of .

Does the issur doraisso (a biblical prohibition) apply to all fruit?

The Shulchan Aruch in siman 320 categorizes all fruit into three categories, namely a biblical prohibition, a Rabbinical one and fruits that are permitted to be squeezed.

The gemora Shabbos 145a [8] says that one is only biblically prohibited to squeeze grapes for their wine and olives for their oil. Accordingly it would seem that all other fruits are not biblically prohibited.

What is the reason that the biblical prohibition only includes olives and grapes?

            Rashi on the gemora says that it is unusual to squeeze other fruit, and hence squeezing other fruit is not a melacha doraisso. The Chayei Adam [9] duly says that fruits that are regularly squeezed for their juice would also be subject to a biblical prohibition. We even find the Rashba [10] saying that olives and grapes are ossur midoraisso, because the majority of olives and grapes are squeezed for their juice whereas with other fruit the majority is eaten.

According to this Rashba squeezing oranges to make orange juice is probably an issur doraisso.

On the other hand other poskim [11] say that it does not depend on general practice regularity and the issur doraisso only applies to olives and grapes.

[1] SSK 3:78.

[2] I did not manage to show this paragraph to Rav Sternbuch shlita.

[3] SSK 3:78 and in footnote 210.

[4] Some authorities are stringent and say that since eventually the items are organized it is forbidden. One should therefore seek halachic guidance!

[5] We are obviously not suggesting that adults play games on Shabbos as the Shabbos was given by Hashem to be utilized for spiritual uplifting, see the SSK 16:1.

[6] R Osher Weiss in his sefer on Shabbos presents a few answers and concludes that one may not rely on these answers because we do not find these heterim in the poskim.

[7] According to the Rambam (7:8) but according to other Rishonim the issur of drawing blood is because of which is a derivative of slaughtering.

[8] 2 lines from the bottom of the page.

[9] In the Nishmas Adam " ".

[10] Shabbos 145a at the end of " .

[11] " .


Orchos Chaim LaRosh

to distance oneself from anger.

We all know and are aware of the damage and harm anger causes. We also recognize it as one of our biggest vices. It is important for an angry person to visualize the outcome of his anger and pre-think situations into which he is usually drawn into and learn how to prevent that happening. It is easy to talk but it must be done.

            Not only does an angry person harm himself, his behavior affects his family and circle of friends. Nobody likes being next to an angry person. Just look at the expression of terror on the face of a child of an angry person, as the parent is about to explode. Think would you like to be that child? Would you want your father to do that to you?

            A happy person gets angry less. An , a humble person gets angry less.

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.