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Saturday, November 24, 2012

Beis like Lamed

R' Shammai Gross goes to the "HaSofer" store in Yerushalayim at least once a week to pasken shailos on STaM that has been checked there.

Below is a shailo that he dealt with this past a week. A Beis that the tag on top was placed at the far left and longer than it should be. R' Shammai said it was pasul.

R' Moshe Flumenbaum was nice enough to let me keep the parshiyos (he cut of the first 2 and gave me the last 2 -- how I was able to bring to you what I have below.)

Please comment with your thought and opinions. I was a little surprised since I've seen R' Shammai be more makil with these sorts of shailos in the past. The chevra by the shop there were quite "happy" to hear that he said it was pasul since that's what they all seemed to believe it was going to be.


9 comments:

  1. this is a classical case but still i think a tinok would have read it as beis

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    1. I agree. It is very likely that the tinok would read a bet. However more appropriately given the comments below and possible disagreements over the p'sak this is a case of genuine safek and perfect for bringing a tinok.

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  2. My question is why cut off the last two parshios? You could have rewritten the last word and only had to replace "vhaya im shemoa".

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  3. Eli - I agree completely...I will bli neder try and get this to R' Friedlander

    Aaron - Good point! Could be in the "heat of the moment" when the shailo finally came up among all the other shailos and the olam was happy to get the final psak he took it right away, cut it off, and handed it to me. Maybe the person will anyway buy new tefillin and he won't be able to sell this or even make a gemach out of it?

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  4. I must admit that I am baffled by the pesak. The tag may have been a bit too long, however it is still thin enough to not be confused with a lamed. It truly should have been shown to a tinok to resolve the case if there was a doubt.

    More so, I don't understand the rooting by the chevra at the shop. I feel bad for the customer who is being pressed to buy new tefillin. :(

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    1. I agree. With the long moshav, it looks enough like a beis that even a shailas tinok is an "extra" and I don't get how this could be pasuled outright. My shimush was under an older sofer who stressed "hatorah chasa al m'monam shel yisrael." I do think you're being a little hard on the chevra in the store though. The way Yehoshua described it they weren't rooting for another psul to make another sale, they were "stam" (pun intended :) ) happy to have R' Shammai bear them out.

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  5. Perhaps I said to much. The olam there are in fact very professional and yiree shamayim. The one in charge doesn't pasul things "stam" and asks every sofek to R' Shammai (or another rov I would presume but it seems R' Shammai is the main one there as he goes once a week to the store itself.) Doesn't mean he doesn't have his own opinion, he's been working in the field for many many years.

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  6. Hi Yitzchak,
    Please don't think, by any means, that my intention was to be harsh on the chevra at the store. Rabbi Fluenbaum runs a most professional shop. Rather, as you mention, my point is to bear-out the importance of "hatorah chasa al mamonam shel yisrael." This is something that we as sofrim should be very sensitive to. Our philosophy should always be geared at finding ways to uphold the kashruth of STaM rather than finding ways to disqualify it.

    Yehoshua, you did well in pointing this out. It is a great experience and shimush for many of the readers of this blog. Keep up your great posts.

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  7. If a chacham of the caliber and expertise of Rav Shammai paskens it is pasul then in his opinion, which outweighs that of many magiim/sofrim together, it was not a safek and hence not a shailos tinok.

    To counter his opinion one would need to get an opinion of one of equal caliber.

    While the tag is tall and the top sticks out to the left, I'd think it should be thicker before it can be called a lamed. I look forward to hearing what my rebbi, Rav Friedlander says.

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