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Reviewed by Rabbi Benzion Schiffenbauer Shlita
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Making a Siyum- Taanis Bechorim Part 3
Siyum on Erev Pesach
The Shulchan Aruch says that on Erev Pesach the firstborn of each family fast.(12) The reason is as a remembrance of the miracle that the firstborns were saved from makos bechoros. (13) The minhag is that siyum is made on Erev Pesach and those bechorim present may partake in the siyum, thereby able to eat the rest of the day.(14) Although this fast should be like every other fast whereby eating is prohibited, even if one broke his fast and ate, this fast is different. Every other fast there are two halachas, 1. A mitzvah to fast. 2. A prohibition against eating. If one ate there is no mitzvah to fast anymore, but he still may not eat. This applies by fasts where the purpose is for inuyeo. By this fast, it is a remembrance of the miracle and there is no prohibition to eat, only a mitzvah to fast, once this mitzvah has been lifted by conducting a siyum, there is no reason to fast the rest of the day.(15) One making the siyum may eat prior to the siyum. (16) (Obviously only whatever is permitted to be eaten before davening).(17) Some have the custom to bring home food from the siyum for their wives, if they are bechorim. (18) Initially, one should make the siyum on Gemorah rather than any other thing previously mentioned. (19) The poskim are in dispute whether one can plan his learning in order to make a siyum on Erev Pesach.(20) The prevailing minhag is to be lenient in this regard.(21) Some say even if the bechorim present at the siyum do not hear or understand the siyum, eating is permitted afterwards.(22) Although some say they should understand it, and the one making the siyum should leave over a small piece of aggadata that all present can understand.(23) Nonetheless, the minhag is that the ones being exempted do not have to understand that which the one making the siyum is saying.(24) One must eat some food at the siyum in order to be able to eat later. (25) If one cannot partake in the siyum in person, some permit him to listen to the siyum via telephone. This should only be relied upon in extraordinary situations. (26)
(12) 570:1, see Mesechtas Sofrim 21:3, Mishnah Berurah 570:2-3, Siddur Pesach K'hilchoso 14:1-2, Mikroya Kodesh Pesach 2:22, Be'er Moshe 5:111, Minhag Yisroel Torah 2:page 256, Emes L'Yaakov page 206:footnote 446, Mevakshei Torah pages 563-564, Lekutei Maharich 3:page 7, Teshuvos V'hanhugos 3:113. (13) Mishnah Berurah 1, Eretz Tzvi 79, Harerei Kodesh 2:page 83, Moadim V'zmanim 7:169. (14) Mishnah Berurah 10, Aruch Ha'shulchan 5, Eretz Tzvi 79, Minchas Yitzchok 8:45, Orchos Chaim 570:3, Yabea Omer 4:42:1, 4:13:3, Hesorireos Teshuva 245, Nemukei O.C. 570, Teshuvos V'hanhugos 2:210, 1:300, 3:114, Ben Ish Chai Tzav 1:25, Lekutei Maharich 3:page 7, Natei Gavriel 43, Arugas Habosem 139, Maharim Brisk 133, Minhag Yisroel Torah pages 257 and 259, Seder Pesach 14:5, Vayivorech Dovid 1:54. (15) Eretz Tzvi 79. (16) See Mishnah Berurah 568:18, Vayivorech Dovid 1:54, Emes L'Yaakov ibid, Yoma Tova L'rabanan page 68:6. (17) Refer to Shulchan Aruch O.C. 89:3. (18) Poskim. (19) Seder Pesach page 169:6. (20) Teshuvos R'Akiva Eiger 34, Elef Lecha Shlomo 317, Elya Rabbah 551:26. (21) Horav Yisroel Belsky Shlita, see Shol U'maishiv, this is how it seems from the Mishnah Berurah 551:73, Betzel Hachuchma 4:99:6, Minhag Yisroel Torah page 260:4, Natei Gavriel page 207:footnote 22, Minchas Yitzchok 2:93:4, Yoma Tova L'rabanan page 68 footnote 9, Tamei Minhagim 634 page 287, Piskei Teshuvos page 213 footnote 35, Haggadah Shel Pesach (Horav Elyashiv Shlita) page 19. (22) Horav Yisroel Belsky Shlita, see Vayivorech Dovid ibid, Teshuvos V'hanhugos ibid, Yabea Omer ibid 3, Maharam Brisk 133, Minchas Yitzchok 9:45, Oz Nedberu 12:58, Stiepler quoted in Teshuvos V'hanhugos 1:300. (23) Ben Ish Chai Tzav 1:25, Chaim L'rosh 143, Yoma Tova L'rabanan page 69. (24) Horav Yisroel Belsky Shlita. (25) Horav Yisroel Belsky Shlita, see Aruch Ha'shulchan 5, Be'er Heitiv 559:15, Emes L'Yaakov ibid, Da'as Torah 570:1, Teshuvos V'hanhugos 1:300, Seder Pesach 14:4, Kaf Ha'chaim 551:161, Rivevos Ephraim 1:296. (26) Horav Shlomo Zalman Aurbach zt"l quoted in Yoma Tova L'rabanan page 70 footnote 16, see Modanei Shlomo (Moadim) page
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