Q: During laining, the ba'al koreh showed the oleh (the one who had the aliya) the wrong place and noticed during the oleh's beracha. The ba'al koreh rolled the Torah to the right place as the oleh continued his beracha. Did the oleh have to make a new beracha?
A: This question is important because a quick decision is needed, and sometimes the rav is not present. It is hard to choose among opinions, and there are distinctions over which poskim differ. We will try to explain the basic approaches and present an approach to implementation.
The Beit Yosef (Orach Chayim 140) relates the following incident. On Rosh Chodesh Tevet, the shaliach tzibbur opened up the Sefer Torah for Chanuka reading before that for Rosh Chodesh and was corrected after the oleh's beracha. The Avudraham brought those who said that he should have made another beracha because of the time delay as they rolled the sefer to the correct place and because in the parallel case, of one who made a beracha on a food but ended up eating a different one, he makes a new beracha. He brings others who argue on both assumptions and say that the beracha applies to all texts that are in the Sefer Torah before him and, therefore, making a new one is improper. The Beit Yosef concludes that since regarding berachot on foods (206:6), we require a new beracha on the food he had not intended to eat even though it had been in front of him, so too here he makes a new beracha. In the Shulchan Aruch (140:3), he brings both opinions but favors the one to make another beracha (without repeating the introduction of "Barchu…" (Mishna Berura 140:3)). Nevertheless, recent Sefardic poskim (see Kaf Hachayim 140:15; Yalkut Yosef 140:4) conclude that in a case of a doubt whether or not to recite a beracha, one refrains from reciting it even if the Shulchan Aruch rules that one should.
Ashkenazic poskim generally require the new beracha in this case, but several distinctions make application of this rule uncommon. Most classical poskim decided that the matter depends on the oleh's intention during the beracha. Since most people do not think too deeply about the matter, poskim have to fill in gaps. If the oleh becomes aware of the mistake before the ending of the beracha, he does not need a new beracha (Biur Halacha, ad loc.). (Rolling the Torah without him realizing would not help). The Mishna Berura (ibid. :9) rules that all texts that were open when the oleh was shown the place are covered by the beracha. (The Shaarei Efrayim 4:17 requires that the texts be in the same column). Thus, the most common mistakes that require a new beracha are in the first aliya, in cases where the wrong Torah was taken out, the Torah was rolled improperly, or the place was moved during the last hagba (let the ba'al koreh, gabbai, and kohen beware).
The Pri Megadim (Eshel Avraham 140:4) raises a further limitation on the basic ruling. Noting that the case discussed by the Rishonim involved people who thought that they were supposed to lain the Chanuka reading first, he says that if the oleh knew what the right reading is but was inadvertently shown the wrong column, then he does not make another beracha. Although the classical poskim and the Mishna Berura apparently reject the Pri Megadim, and accepted practice appears to follow the Mishna Berura, the Pri Megadim makes a lot of halachic sense. The Radvaz (I, 248) goes further, saying that the beracha primarily relates to the mitzva of public Torah reading, with the specific text being secondary. Of great importance is that leading, recent poskim, including R. Moshe Feinstein (OC I, 36; see Piskei Teshuvot 140:3) accept the Pri Megadim and that we try to avoid questionable berachot.
We suggest the following (if the rav is not present). If you recall that the shul's practice is like the Mishna Berura, have the oleh make a new beracha, unless he is Sefardic, he refuses, or you expect him to be upset to repeat the beracha. If the practice is not known, do not instruct the oleh to make a questionable beracha, given important poskim's opposition.
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We can speak about Eretz Yisrael in the same way. To return to a barren land after 2000 years of exile, and to transform what had become a virtual wasteland into living habitations and an advanced country - and all this in less than 60 years - is nothing short of a great miracle. This is especially true given all the obstacles along the way and opposition from the rest of the world.
Amazingly, the land has developed not only physically, but spiritually as well. At the center of the spiritual world is the Western Wall, recovered during the miraculous 6-Day War, and a draw for Jews from all over the world. As one drives from community to community, it is astounding how many shuls and Torah study halls have been built over the years.
And, as long as we keep our ultimate national goal in mind, to build a "house" in which the Presence of God may rest, then we can expect additional miracles that will further develop this country into place to which ALL Jews will wish to return. We will be able to make a gift (terumah) to God from the very gift that He first gave to us, as the Jews did in this week's parsha when they contributed to the Mishkan.
Rabbi Pinchas Winston, Telshe-Stone
"Rebbe," they asked, "what happened?"
"Inside that house," explained R' Hillel, "is a
man who is mortally ill, and since all the other members of the household
are ignorant and refused to do anything for him which they thought might be
a violation of Shabbos, I felt that I had to show them in practice that when
someone's life is in danger it is a mitzva to violate Shabbos for him."
The other unusual feature is not just unusual, it is unique. After the main text of the haftara, we finish with two p'sukim from the PREVIOUS chapter. There are several haftarot that end with skipping ahead for the final pasuk or two. But Mishpatim's haftara is the only one that skips back.
And that is the reason for this follow-up. Shulchan Aruch (144:1) discusses skipping in Torah reading and haftara. Mishna B'rura explains a phrase in the Shulchan Aruch as forbidding skipping back, but adds that there are different opinions on the question. The PRI MEGADIM allows skipping back if the topic is the same and if the congregation will not be "bothered" by a long delay in the shift in text. ELIYA RABA forbids skipping back.
In fact, the Yemenite practice, based on the Rambam (of course), is not to add the two p'sukim from the previous chapter, but to continue into the next chapter and read an additional 19 p'sukim (ch. 35) in order to finish on a good note.
RDZ pointed out that HaRav Kaniefsky wrote that if
a shul is using a Chumash or Haftara book, then they can jump back to the
previous chapter for the last two p'sukim. But if they are reading the
haftara from KLAF (a kosher parchment scroll), then they may not skip back,
but must continue reading the additional 19 p'sukim (as do the Teimanim).
True seals have no external ears... only a small ear opening behind the eyes is visible. The furred hind flippers of true seals are shorter than those of the fur seals and sea lions, and extend behind their body to provide propulsion when swimming. The short, furry front flippers act mainly as rudders when the seals are swimming and help with movement on land or ice...
Fur seals and sea lions have small, but
noticeable, external ear flaps. The long, mostly hairless, front flippers
are used for propulsion through the water while the long hind flippers are
used more for steering. The hind flippers can also be brought forward and
under the body, enabling them to 'walk' on land...
One of the fascinating aspects of the command to make the Menora is found in the wording: "And you shall make a Menora; the Menora shall be hammered out" (Shmot 25:31). The use of the active and passive voice here is strange. The Midrash indicates, however, that the intricate details of the Menora were so complicated that Moshe could not visualize how it should appear. Moshe, nevertheless, makes an attempt at forging the Menora (proactive) but finally Hashem assists him: Moshe threw the gold ingot into a fire and the Menora came into being (passive form) without human intervention (cf. Rashi, Gur Aryeh).
The rabbis teach us that the Menora, whose flames
were fed from the purest oil, symbolizes the illumination of the intellect.
Yet Moshe - our foremost teacher and guide - had a cognitive problem
fathoming its creation. It was as if, even by Moshe, the intellect was found
wanting. Clearly Hashem is instructing us that our human faculties are
ultimately subservient to the higher order of things, and that true
intellectual achievement is that which is guided by and serves the dictates