Retzuah being black

A gutte Voch,

I have never clearly understood the halacha regarding retzuah with small white cracks or marks. I know it's halacha moshe mesinai that they have to be 100% black and some opinions say there is a zero tolerance aspect and even one or two small  white cracks are meakev. However there are also lenient opinions such as the Daas Kdoshim that as long as the majority is black it is OK bedieved. What is the halacha lemaisah on this?


  1. R' Moshe had made post with a few shailos in Hilchos Tefillin that he wanted me to ask R' Shammai Gross shlit"a. This was one of the shailos (that the truth is also I had wanted to speak to him about it for a while.)
    R' Shammai told me that halacha l'maseh if it's rov black that b'dieved kosher. Even if in one place in the width of the ratzuah would be missing the black altogether (i.e. a small line from side to side) still it's kosher as long as you have rov. He told me R' Eliyashuv is quite machmir in this but that he holds one can be makil b'dieved.

    To note, in R' Friedlander's shul in Ramot Shlomo there is a small sign (size of a normal piece of paper) saying that the olam should be very careful in this halacha and that "99% black is 100% pasul" ... Now I never spoke to R' Friedlander about this. But the sign is hanging up in his shul right above the sink outside the bathrooms (which is right next to his office in the shul.) Perhaps he holds like R' Eliyashuv.

    Many other Rabbonim in this inyun have told me "rov" is also ok b'dieved.

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  3. the post is: 3 questions in regard to retzuos

  4. rav Freidlander holds like Rav Elyashiv in many areas so it makes sense....

  5. Eli - true...I was by R' Friedlander for a bechina in Yoreh Deah (chelek alef and beis) on 2 occassions. I remember both times he quoted many things from him (a few interesting psakim that stand out in my mind that I still like to quote.)

    R' Shammai is also a 'talmid' of R' Eliyashuv. However he's not afraid to be cholek where he feels the psak is different. From my own estimations I think it was R' Eliyashuv that R' Shammai Gross was makabel from the most among the gedolim that he had the opportunity to be mashamesh.


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