Wednesday, February 08, 2012

zachor es yom hashabbos: is thinking about it enough?

There is so much more to say on Beshalach, but another week has gone by and been swallowed up by other business, so on to Yisro.

The Rambam describes the mitzvah of kiddush in Sefer haMitzvos 155:

הציווי שנצטווינו לומר דברים ביום השבת בכניסתו וביציאתו

He echoes the same in Mishne Torah (Shabbos 29:1):

מצות עשה מן התורה לקדש יום השבת בדברים

From the Rambam's language it's pretty clear that the mitzvah of kiddush requires "devarim," the recitation of words. It must be done verbally.

Question: The gemara (Meg. 18) tells us that if not for the fact that the Torah uses the double-expression of "zachor" and "lo tishkach" we would assume that the mitzvah of zechiras Amalek could be fulfilled b'lev, mentally, buy just thinking about Amalek. Since no such double-expression is used in connection with the mitzvah of kiddush, it stands to reason that one can fulfill "zachor" of kiddush by thinking alone, through hirhur.

Why does the Rambam say otherwise?


  1. great unknown9:50 PM

    Doesn't say zachor es kedushas shabbos. le'kadsho requires dibbur like any hekdesh. Except for terumah where is specifically says ve'nechshav, and even then le'halacha that's only by d'mai, if I remember correctly.

  2. Anonymous5:30 AM

    given all the concerns about segulahs, about mechanical recitals, that were recently typed onto the column here, the prescribed increase should not be "do more than think it, say it", but "do more than say it, think it!"

  3. grunk8:04 AM

    Beautiful and insightful, anonymous. But it should be: "do more than say it, also. think it."

    Kedusha without kavanna is kedusha b'ta'us, which we posken is useless.

  4. Anonymous5:57 PM

    true, Rabbi Dr. grunk, although our more interior selves might be happy with focused thought alone, Hashem commands a social Kingdom, a worldly Kingdom, so vocalise we must...

  5. >>>le'kadsho requires dibbur like any hekdesh.

    Just curious: Do you think that why dibur is required by kiddushin too for the same reason?

    I'm sure you realize the two types of kedusha b'pashtus have nothing is common other than the same word (if you are not mekadesh an animal it remains chulin; if you are not mekadesh shabbos...?) I don't think the sevara passes muster in straight and narrow litvishe lomdus, but the Koshiglover in Eretz Tzvi says it. It's quite a chiddush!

  6. great unknown7:52 PM

    Since the torah says "l'kadsho", either we have to act as if we were making a chalos kedusha, or there is some actual difference in the kedushas shabbos at least for me.

    There is a similar concept in v'karasa leShabbos oneg, which is not the same as oneg shabbos. [on this, I would refer you to Rav Hutner, but I'm too lazy to look up the mar'eh makom]

    by kiddushin there is also the concept of gemiras da'as besides the absolute abhorence of devorim she'blaiv - unless there is an unmdana d'muchach as I'm sure you remember from the case in the Shev Shmaitsa. But a person can be mekadesh b'remez.

    However, there is a major distinction between airusin and other kedushot. See the first Rav Gustman in the Kuntrsai Shiurim on Kiddushin, where he discusses that airusin can be invoked from three different directions.

    There is also the issue of whether a shtar kiddushin [I'd like to see someone try that... and no, I'm not going any further] which has the nusach written in it also require the dibbur.

  7. great unknown7:58 PM

    And your idea of straight and narrow litvishe lomdus seems to have been colored/blinkered by Brisk. Slobodka was much broader: R' Hutner and R' Cook come to mind immediately. See also R' Meir Simcha throughout the Meshech Chochma, e.g., or the Shiurei Da'as.

  8. re being mekadesh something that is hekdesh without you- the classic example is Bechor, where the Gemara (Nedarim 13a, time to slap yourself in the forehead, Chaim...) anticipates this discussion:
    בכור נמי מתפיסו בנדר הוא דתניא משום רבי אמרו מנין לנולד בכור בתוך ביתו שמצוה להקדישו שנאמר (דברים טו) הזכר תקדיש ומאן דשרי כי לא מקדיש ליה מי לא מיקדיש

  9. Anonymous3:48 PM

    The Rav in his shiurim for his father says that Kiddush adds a new element of Kiddushas Hayom that does not exist otherwise. I beleive he brings a Ramban from this week's parasha that quotes the same idea in the name of the geonim. Also see Tos. in the beginning of Arvei Pesachim where he quotes a shiltos that seems to say the same thing.


  10. chaim b.7:29 PM

    B - the Kozhiglover uses bechor as his model (I didn't need to even remember Nedarim -- it's today's daf). It's still a big chiddush to say. Just read wikipedia:

    A term may refer to different laws in different contexts. For example, Rabbi Chaim Soloveitchik observed that the Talmud requires "panim chadashos" (meaning "a new presence" or "new faces") at the Sheva Brachos celebration, i.e. a guest must be present who had not attended the wedding. Elsewhere, the Talmud comments that once sacrificial meat has been burned to ashes, the ashes no longer have a sacrificial status, as "panim chadashos ba'u l'chan" – "a new presence has arrived", meaning that the ashes are not the same as the meat. "So if you were at a Sheva Brachos party, and you looked around and everyone there had already been at this couple's wedding, why not just take some meat and burn it to ashes?", challenged Rabbi Chaim. Clearly, the phrase "panim chadashos" has different meanings in the contexts of wedding celebrations and sacrificial meat. (

  11. chaim b.7:36 PM

    Rav Wahrman in his sefer Olos Shabbos puts this Kozhiglover together with RYBS reading of the Ramban. The ra'aya is from the Yerushalmi that says the bracha of mei'ein sheva ends mekadesh yisrael v'yom hashabbos. We say mekadesh yisrael v'hazmanim because we create the kedushas Y"T; apparently the Ylmi holds to some degree the same is true of Shabbos.

    Ramban compares the din kiddush to being mekadesh yovel -- using that same analogy, must B"D declare (through dibur) it to be yoveil for the kiddush of the year to have a chalos? Just because there is an idea of being mekadesh the day does not automatically mean dibbur is required.

    My son showed me that the Rogatchover dug up a toras kohanim that says shamor goes with zachor like lo tishkach with zachor.

  12. I was just addressing your answer of "(if you are not mekadesh an animal it remains chulin; if you are not mekadesh shabbos...?)"

    I enjoyed the anonymous reference to the Ramban's Geonim and the Yerushalmi or the Sh'iltos from RYBS. I wonder what the mechanism is. Bishlema by bechor, you say "harei zeh kodosh." But here, you're just saying what it is, not imparting a din. Evidently, simply mentioning that the Ribono shel Olam was mekadesh it imparts a kedusha. And of course it doesn't shtim with R' Akiva Eiger in 271 that saying Good Shabbos is a kiyum of the Deoraysa of kiddush.

  13. I recall a R Avraham Ben harambam in hamaspik leovdei hashem that says this vort of thinking on shabas

    1. I checked on Otzar and couldn't find it. If you come across it, please let me know.