[Avodah] When early shabbos is Rosh Chodesh

Akiva Miller akivagmiller at gmail.com
Wed May 18 19:28:32 PDT 2022

In my last post in this thread, I gave examples of how the date is
determined by the calendar and the sun for almost all halachos, but for
tefilah/brachos the date can be changed voluntarily and deliberately. There
are two ways this can be done: If the coming day is subject to the
mitzva of Tosefes Kedusha, a mere acceptance of that kedusha changes the
date for all tefilos and brachos. (Questions about community kabala vs
individuals is not relevant to this thread.)  If the coming day is *not*
subject to the mitzva of Tosefes Kedusha, then the date changes upon
beginning Maariv.

Prior to mincha this evening, I overheard part of a shiur in shul, in which
yet another example of these principles was given. The case is someone who
obtains tzitzis in the late afternoon.

>>> MECHABER 18:1 - Night is not a time for tzitzis, as it is excluded by
the pasuk "Ur'eesem oso." According to the Rambam, whatever one is wearing
at night is exempt, even if it is a daytime garment, and whatever one wears
during the day requires tzitzis, even if it is a nighttime garment.
According to the Rosh, nighttime clothing is exempt even if he wears it
during the day, and daytime or all-day clothing requires tzitzis even when
wearing it at night.

>>> RAMA 18:1 - Safek brachos l'hakel, so don't say a bracha on it, except
when wearing it during the day *and* it is a daytime garment. After Tefilas
Maariv, even though it is still daytime, don't say the bracha. And on Yom
Kippur evening, put it on while it is still day, and say the bracha.

There are several interesting comments to make about this. Most relevant to
this thread, the Rama's reference to Yom Kippur is merely an example of his
previous comment, which is that Maariv - even on an ordinary weekday - is
the end of when one may say the bracha.

MB 7 discusses the very late afternoon of Erev Yom Kippur. He explains that
one might still be able to say the bracha on his tallis during Beis
Hashmashos, and certainly if it is early enough to be merely Safek
Bein Hashmashos. Part of his reasoning seems to be that we have a
Sfek Sfeka in favor of saying the bracha: it might still be daytime, and
even if it is nighttime then the Rosh requires the tzitzis and allows the
bracha. I find this particularly intriguing, because we are talking about
the one day per year (Yom Kippur) when all poskim agree that we are
required to accept Kedushas Hayom *before* Bein Hashmashos. So how can we
allow him to say the bracha, thereby pretending that it isn't Yom Kippur

Perhaps the answer is that (despite the Rama's psak that on an ordinary day
one may not say the bracha on tzitzis after Maariv) this mitzva really has
nothing to do with the calendar at all. Yes, tzitzis does care about day
and night, but not at all about whether today is Erev YK or actual YK. And
in fact, the MB 7 explicitly says that tzitzis doesn't even care about day
and night - only about how much light we have.

Akiva Miller

After writing all the above, I saw that the Dirshu Mishneh Brurah on MB
18:7 also sees that as a case of "Sfek Sfeka in favor of saying the
bracha", and they point to MB 11:6 for another example of that principle.

Also, see Dirshu 18 #4 for a situation where someone has not yet put on
Tefillin, and the tzibur has already davened Maariv, but he personally did
*not* daven Maariv yet.
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