[Avodah] Showering During the 9 Days

Shoshana Boublil toramada at bezeqint.net
Mon Aug 12 13:47:50 PDT 2019

I was reading R' Micha's comments on RYBS's view of halacha and ceremony
and was struck by the worldview that is so different from the viewpoint
discussed in the introduction to the Makor Chaim by Rav Chaim David

Date: Thu, 8 Aug 2019 15:50:08 -0400
From: Micha Berger <micha at aishdas.org>
> This idea that in true Judaism, meaning is only found in halakhah goes as
> far as to shape the Rav's rulings about how to practice mourning during
> these three weeks. The Rav was certain that Chazal and the rishonim could
> not possibly have established practices for the Three Weeks that did not
> follow the forms of aveilus for the death of a family member...

> The point in common is that to the Rav's worldview, there couldn't be a
> minhag of mourning that didn't have the halachically established structure
> for aveilus. Such a practice would be "ceremony".

In the introduction to the Makor Chaim (IIRC), Rav Chaim David HaLevy
mentions his reasons for writing this halachic set of books. He mentions
a discussion with Rav AYH Kook and how Rav Kook told him that the modern
Jew needs not just Halacha but also Machshava. Therefore, in order to
increase knowledge of Halachah it is imperitive to mix in Machashava.

The result was a series of books where every single halachic topic has
an introduction discussing related matters of Machshava, that at times
also include the issues of feelings and ceremony and much, much more.
His introduction to lighting candles which talks about the meaning
of increasing the light in the house, both in physical and spiritual
ways is enlightening. Many other examples are available and I highly
recommend the series (and his shu"t).

We have here two Gedolim who were contemporaries, and who came from
different backgrounds and worldviews and both acted to increase Torah
in the world through increased knowledge of halachah.

Shoshana L. Boublil, Israel

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