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October 17, 2008 9:54 pm at 9:54 pm #1237032
Considering that there are areas where we can all agree that the klal needs vast improvements in observance (for example the terrible amount of loshon horah spoken, and the terrible lack of tznius in some communities);
Considering that obviously the existing chumras are not sufficiently hindering many of us from breaching halachas in these areas;
Considering that one of the purposes of chumras is as a geder (“siyag ve-geder” – a hedge and a fence) against coming to do an actual aveira;
Therefore be it resolved that we call upon our Rabbonim (who are the arbiters in establishing chumras) to consider various areas where new chumras would benefit Klal Yisroel.
Now for those who are on principal opposed for a layman calling for the establishment of additional chumras (and feel it best be left to the deliberations of our Gedolim), I say your point is a fair one. But you only have a leg to stand on in advancing that argument if you are on the record as similarly opposing the various calls made in these hollowed blogs for a reduction in chumras.
Indeed removing an existing chumra is far more halachicly problematic than establishing a new one. If a Minhag has developed as a Siyag Ve-Geder to correct some michshol, and that Siyag Ve-Geder was effected by a Chacham and then it was ratified by being popularly adopted as the Minhag (i.e. the Minhag did not evolve from a Machlokes in Halacha but from some weakness in Mitzvah performance) then a new Chacham may not nullify that Minhag (see Teshuvos HaRosh 55:10 and Igros Moshe OH V.3, siman 64 and Igros Moshe YD V.1, siman 13).
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