web analytics
March 4, 2015 / 13 Adar , 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post


Two Days Rosh Hashanah, Eruvin And Eggs

Grunfeld-Raphael-NEW

Why is Rosh Hashanah so different from other Jewish holidays? On the face of it, it does not seem to follow any pattern. It is celebrated for two days not only in the Diaspora but also in Israel. Yet the sages refer to the two days of Rosh Hashanah as yoma arichta – one long day.

On Pesach, Shavuot, and Sukkot we keep Yom Tov for two days because during the time of the Second Temple there was doubt whether the month preceding Yom Tov was a chodesh chaser of 29 days or a chodesh maleh of 30 days. But on Rosh Hashanah, the doubt was exacerbated for the following reason. In the case of other festivals, such as Pesach, the emissaries the bet din dispatched to advise outlying districts of a chodesh chaser, had 14 days to reach their destination. In the case of Rosh Hashanah, however, the emissaries had no time at all. In fact, as soon as the witnesses had testified on the 30th day of Elul that they had sighted the new moon, that very day was declared as Rosh Hashanah. And on Rosh Hashanah the emissaries could not travel more than the techum Shabbat distance beyond Jerusalem. As a result, even those living inside Israel but outside of Jerusalem remained in doubt.

And confusion reigned even inside Jerusalem. Nobody knew whether the witnesses who would testify to the sighting of the new moon would arrive on the day of the thirtieth, in which case Rosh Hashanah would be on the thirtieth day, or whether they would not arrive, in which case Rosh Hashanah would be on the thirty-first day. On the night immediately following the 29th day of Elul and on 30th day of Elul itself, people hedged their bets. They ceased work, went to the synagogue, recited the Rosh Hashanah prayers and blew the shofar, all in a tentative state of mind. Perhaps, they fretted, the witnesses would not come that day, the thirtieth, so the following day, the thirty-first, would be Rosh Hashanah by default and a day’s work would have been wasted. Then again, perhaps the witnesses would come that day. So how could they risk working?

The Levites in the Temple also fretted. If the witnesses would not arrive by Minchah time on the day of the 30th, the Levites had to proceed to offer up the tamid, the afternoon daily sacrifice. But they did not know which Psalm to sing when doing so. Should they sing the special Rosh Hashanah Psalm or the weekday Psalm? One year they bet on the weekday Psalm only to see the witnesses arrive after Minchah and prove them wrong.

In this situation, the rabbis decided to dispel the doubt. They decreed that if witnesses would arrive after the afternoon sacrifice on the 30th day of Elul, their testimony would be ignored and the 31st of Elul would be declared Rosh Hashanah. Furthermore, in order to provide certainty for the Levites and to prevent people from working on the 30th of Elul after Minchah time, the Rabbis merged the 30th day of Elul with the 31st day, declaring them both one long day, or yoma arichta.

From this decree on, the two days of Rosh Hashanah, unlike the two days of Pesach, Shavuot and Sukkot, were no longer celebrated out of doubt but out of certainty. This distinction between the status of the two days of Rosh Hashanah and the two days of the other festivals has practical ramifications. For example, on Rosh Hashanah one may not extend the techum Shabbat 4,0000 amot in two directions, as one may on the two days of Pesach, Shavuot and Sukkot. Because the two days of Rosh Hashanah are merged into one yoma arichta, only one eruv techumin could be placed for both days to allow for walking 4,000 amot in only one chosen direction. Similarly, the argument that an egg laid on the first day of Pesach, Shavuot or Sukkot could be eaten on the second day of these festivals would not apply. An egg laid on the first day Rosh Hashanah could not be eaten on the second.

About the Author: Raphael Grunfeld’s book, “Ner Eyal on Seder Moed” (distributed by Mesorah) is available at OU.org and your local Jewish bookstore. His new book, “Ner Eyal on Seder Nashim & Nezikin,” will be available shortly.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Two Days Rosh Hashanah, Eruvin And Eggs”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
An anti-Semitic poster seen in Europe.
Combatting the Haman of Today
Latest Judaism Stories
wine

One can drink up to the Talmud’s criterion to confuse Mordechai and Haman-but not beyond.

Hur and Aharon holding up Moshe's hands as Joshua battled Amalek.

“The voice is the voice of Yaakov, but the hands are the hands of Esav” gives great insight to Purim

Esther Denouncing Haman

Purim is the battleground of extremes, Amalek and Yisrael, with Zoroastrian Persia in between.

Niehaus-022715

One should not give the money before Purim morning or after sunset.

The mishloach manos of times gone by were sometimes simple and sometimes elaborate, but the main focus was on the preparation of the delicious food they contained.

Does Hashem ever go away and not pay attention to us?

In other words, the Torah is an expression of the Way that we must follow in order to live a divine-like life and to bond in the highest way possible with God or Being Itself.

The Chasam Sofer answers that one of only prohibited from wearing a garment that contains shatnez if he does so while wearing the garment for pleasure purposes.

The avodah (service) of the kohen gadol is vital and highly sensitive; the world’s very existence depends on it.

Moreover, even if the perpetrator of the capital offense is never actually executed, such as when the fatal act was unintentional, Kam Lei applies and the judge cannot award damages.

Forever After?
‘Obligated for Challahh and Not Terumah’
(Kesubos 25a)

Question: If Abraham was commanded to circumcise his descendants on the eighth day, why do Arabs – who claim to descend from Abraham through Yishmael – wait until their children are 13 to circumcise them? I am aware that this is a matter of little consequence to our people. Nevertheless, this inconsistency is one that piques my curiosity.

M. Goldman
(Via E-mail)

“We really appreciate your efforts in straightening the shul,” said Mr. Reiss. “How is it going?”

This was a spontaneous act of rest after the miracle of vanquishing their respective foes. The following year they celebrated on the same days as a minhag.

The way we must to relate to our young adult children is to communicate with genuine loving-kindness

More Articles from Raphael Grunfeld
Grunfeld-Raphael-logo

Moreover, even if the perpetrator of the capital offense is never actually executed, such as when the fatal act was unintentional, Kam Lei applies and the judge cannot award damages.

Grunfeld-Raphael-logo

One of the purposes of the ketubah money is to make it difficult for a husband to capriciously divorce his wife.

A more difficult situation arises when there is no evidence placing the missing husband at the site of the death.

The court cannot solely rely on death certificates issued by non-Jewish institutions without conducting its own investigation into the facts of the case.

When the inability cannot be clearly attributed to either spouse, the halacha is the subject of debate among the Rishonim.

The child of a Jewish mother from a union with a non-Jewish father is not a mamzer.

Although the conversion ceremony involves more than circumcision and immersion, these are the two essential requirements, without which the conversion is ineffective.

If a man dies childless, the Torah commands the deceased’s brother to marry his brother’s widow in a ceremony known as yibum, or to perform a special form of divorce ceremony with her known as chalitzah.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/halacha-hashkafa/two-days-rosh-hashanah-eruvin-and-eggs-2/2014/05/29/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: