Thursday, April 29, 2010
haircuts this Friday
The Rama (493:2) writes that when Lag baOmer falls on Sunday, like it does this year, haircuts and shaves may be taken even on Friday l’kavod Shabbos. What is debatable is whether the same logic holds true for those who observe aveilus of sefirah until Rosh Chodesh Sivan or until shloshes y’mei hagbalah and those days fall on/begin on Sunday. The Pri Megadim holds that the same heter for haircuts/shaves on Friday applies in these cases as well; both R’ Moshe and R’ Elyashiv disagree. R’ Moshe explained that the logic of the Rama is not based on kavod Shabbos in isolation, but rather is baed on kavod Shabbos when placed in context and in contrast with Lag baOmer. It would be halachically unseemly to allow haircuts on Sunday, Lag baOmer, a minor festival, but insist on maintaining an unkempt appearance on Shabbos, which has a far superior level of kedusha. The same logic does not hold true at the end of sefirah. The haircut taken after Rosh Chodesh or the days of hagbalah is not due to those days being celebrated as festivals and standing in contrast to Shabbos, but rather the heter for a haircut is due simply to aveilus having ended (see Shu”T Rivevos Ephraim 6:259). Similarly, where a shloshim period ends on Sunday, there is no heter for a shave or haircut on the preceding Friday.