R' Shammai Gross and Selling STaM via the Internet

I spoke to R' Shammai Gross about a few of the issues raised here over the last few days about selling STaM over the Internet.

The conversation took place on the street when I was walking him home from the Beis Horah. Sometimes the teshuvas I get then are not as "clear" however I will try and give this over the best I can.

1) In regards to a frum person setting up a website and selling STaM over the internet when not knowing who the buyers are is for sure a problem. He said it could be a goy, it could be someone buying for a 'reform' woman to wear Tefillin (example he gave), etc. He didn't seem to like the idea at all. I asked further if it's ossur or perhaps one could require some sort of "proof" from those buying making sure it was going to the right places. For this I understood from him that you can't say it's ossur however as best as possible to figure out who the people are that are buying. I would say in general selling a mezuzah to a not frum person is in fact ok (why not to let them put a kosher mezuzah on their door!?) This could still be a problem if it's a goy, and of course Tefillin and Sefrei Torah you would run into problems as well. Perhaps an idea when filling out the form for an order to make a place to ask "What Kehillah do you belong to?". This way you could maybe get an idea of who the buyer is without asking straight out if they are frum or not.

2) I told him the story about the test that was made and the response that came back. He said these sellers should be notified in a nice way that it's ossur for them to sell a Sefer Torah to people that are not Shomer Torah U'Mitzvos (he said to leave out using "reform", etc)
In terms of making public their names, etc. he said this should not be done.

3) In terms of referring a Reform person to a place where someone will sell them a Sefer Torah. He said this should also not be done. If you know a frum person that will sell to them, you for sure shouldn't tell them ("lifnei d'lifnei" is still a problem -- aside from the other issues involved.) As well he said even a source of not Frum people you shouldn't refer them to. He said best to just keep out of it and tell them politely that you don't sell to not Frum people (said in the nicest way possible of course.)


  1. That is some food for thought... but it seems a lot of Rabbanim differ on this subject..


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