August 31, 2011 10:16 pm at 10:16 pm #599058
Arizal & Aruch HaShulchan On Interlocking Fingers
The Aruch HaShulchan brings L’Halacha (OC 91:7) that in times of Za’am or raging tzorus, one should daven with his hands clasped together and his fingers interlocking. However says the Aruch HaShulchan in times of peace you should not do so because it causes Din Shamayim to be brought down on you.
The Piskei Tshuvos (95:5) brings that Arizal was makpid that you should never hold your hands in that manner and it is bad Mazal. Rav Chaim Palagi writes that one should stop his wife or children from doing this, ever, and especially in times of sickness or the Aseres Yimei Tshuva.
The Aruch HaShulchan says that although placing one hand inside the other is the best way to hold your hands by davening, each person is different and should keep his hands the way he feels comfortable, like on a Shtender or holding on to a shelf. However he says, make sure not to daven wearing gloves.
From Revach.net (yes I love that website lol it has so many enlightening divrei Torah!)September 1, 2011 2:35 am at 2:35 am #1033256
I’ve heard that also that interlocking fingers brings din.September 1, 2011 2:49 am at 2:49 am #1033257
I have a cousin who noticed a picture of R’ Yoshe Ber Soloveitchik in one of the books about him where he was his fingers interlocked.September 1, 2011 5:06 am at 5:06 am #1033258
My aunties’s husband is Chasidish (he is a mechaber of seforim). He once saw me as a teenager with my hands clasped (not during prayer) he said i should not do this, as the Christians do this (in prayer). Ironically many years later i saw this mentioned in Talmud Berochos, it says you should pray with your hands clasped.
Maybe the Christians stole it from us.September 1, 2011 5:38 am at 5:38 am #1033259
so nuch amoool – I should have it clasped when I daven or I should not. This thread is very complicatedSeptember 1, 2011 6:08 am at 6:08 am #1033260
They mean to cross their fingers. Clasped can mean holding one hand in the other.
Certain things became Assur after they became the way of the Ovdei Kochavim. The Avos brought Karbanos on a Matzeiva. But after it became the way of the Ovdei Kochavim it became Assur.September 1, 2011 9:27 am at 9:27 am #1033261
I interlock my fingers often, it’s very comfortable. I am not worried that I am bringing din upon myself or anyone else. ???? ???? ?? ?’ ??????September 1, 2011 4:54 pm at 4:54 pm #1033262
Stirah minei ubeih. How can you be a Tamim if you pick and choose to do what you want because its more comfortable?!September 1, 2011 4:57 pm at 4:57 pm #1033263
u not scared to bring din because of tomim tihiye ??? whats the shaiches ??September 1, 2011 8:43 pm at 8:43 pm #1033264
old man: do you mind explaining your sources that disagree with the Arizal, Rav Chaim Palagi and the Aruch HaShulchanSeptember 2, 2011 1:01 pm at 1:01 pm #1033265
As I said, I see nothing wrong with interlocking my fingers. It’s a comfortable way to place them at times. I believe that the posuk ???? ???? allows me to disregard claims that I am playing with cosmic influences unrelated to shmiras hamitzvos.September 2, 2011 1:32 pm at 1:32 pm #1033266
and as I asked, why do you see nothing wrong when many Gedolim did? Are you smarter than they were?September 2, 2011 2:02 pm at 2:02 pm #1033267
Sorry if I didn’t express myself properly. What I meant to say was that I see nothing wrong with interlocking my fingers and I do it quite often. I am prepared to take responsibility for my actions.September 2, 2011 2:31 pm at 2:31 pm #1033268
i see nothing wrong with eating meat and milk together. i dont see what could possibly be wrong with such an innocent act.September 2, 2011 2:39 pm at 2:39 pm #1033269
now you may have good reason to continue with your practice, most likely there is no problem with it at all according to most Poskim (im only guessing here)
but doing it because you are comfortable with the practice or doing it because you dont see a problem with it is, at a minimum, foolishness.September 2, 2011 3:53 pm at 3:53 pm #1033270
Hello: Plenty of Gedolim and Poskim also saw nothing wrong with it.September 2, 2011 4:11 pm at 4:11 pm #1033271
Sam: Can you share some mekors of any who said its okay? (This isn’t a challenge to your point.)September 2, 2011 4:24 pm at 4:24 pm #1033272
Chein: I don’t have to. The fact that the vast majority of Poskim make no mention of it is more than enough. It’s a Chumra, based on Kabbalah, endorsed by a very small number of Poskim. The tremendous silence by the rest is more than enough of a Makor to be Mattir.September 2, 2011 4:34 pm at 4:34 pm #1033273
That’s very interesting, I hope you don’t mind if I bring something else up that I see as well. It has nothing to do with this, but it is also something that I learned as a kid and reiterated in Kallah class and yet I see women forgetting and/or ignoring for convenience sake.
At the nail salon, many women including Frum women often ask to get their mani/pedi done at the same time to speed things up and save time. That means that two women are working on you at the same time. I was always told as a child, that only on a “mais” are more than one person allowed to work on the same person. For instance when dressing a child, the mother can’t put on the hat and coat while the father puts on the boots. Or a Kallah, someone can’t help her into her shoes, while another girls is zipping her dress.
I explained that to my manicurist and whenever they suggest I do it to speed things up, I tell them “I’m not dead yet” and we all laugh. But seriously, is this halacha or just superstition? Did I just believe this to be halacha because we took it so seriously all our lives?September 2, 2011 4:37 pm at 4:37 pm #1033274
what you really mean sam is that you dont know anything about it, its a new one to you so you assume it is endorsed by a small number of Poskim, its mekor is in Kaballah and all the other Poskim are silent. you assume this based on your lack of familiarity with the issue.
How many Poskim have you done research on their opinions of this matter? Have you spent the last month poring over their Tshuvahs, calling them up, and doing further research that you can speak with such suretySeptember 2, 2011 4:43 pm at 4:43 pm #1033275
see this link from Rabbi Frand quoting an interesting Rabbeinu bachya regarding position of hands during tefilla.September 2, 2011 4:46 pm at 4:46 pm #1033276
is this halacha or just superstition
it is neither. it is a Minhag of a large part of Klal Yisroel, eastern european i believe. i am very careful about it.September 2, 2011 4:49 pm at 4:49 pm #1033277
80: I have done much research into this. I have asked several incredibly knowledgeable people and Bar Ilan is a very good (admittedly not perfect) tool to help find such things. And there is still the aforementioned picture of R’ Soloveitchik doing it, so at least he held it was Muttar.September 2, 2011 5:00 pm at 5:00 pm #1033278
I was brought up with that as well, and I am careful about it. The reason for not cutting the nails in order (brought in Halacha) is also for the reason of it being the way of a Meiss, as well as sleeping with the feet towards the door.September 2, 2011 5:13 pm at 5:13 pm #1033279
HaLeiVi: I have searched for years for it. Is there an actual Makor for the feet towards the door thing?September 2, 2011 5:13 pm at 5:13 pm #1033280
aries2756: In addition I dont believe you are supposed to cot your finger and toe nails on the same day.September 2, 2011 6:09 pm at 6:09 pm #1033281
mky, yeah, that is also mentioned is Sefarim. Not for that reason, though.September 2, 2011 6:44 pm at 6:44 pm #1033282
HaLeiVi: That is the reason given in many Seforim (including the Mishnah Berurah in his Halacho of Ever Shabbos I believe). You should not cut fingernails and toenails in order or on the same day because that’s what they do for a Meis.September 2, 2011 7:24 pm at 7:24 pm #1033283
The following is from dailyhalacha.com. They send an email a day this is from about 2 weeks ago:
Description: Interlocking the Fingers of the Right Hand with the Fingers of the Left Hand
The Sefer Hazechira mentions that those who are accustomed to interlocking their fingers run the risk of experiencing extreme anxiety, Heaven forbid.
There are many warnings of this kind that we hear as children, and many people are unable to distinguish between those that stem from folklore and superstition, and those which have a clear basis in Jewish tradition. When it comes to interlocking fingers, this is a well-documented warning that originates already from the Zohar and the teachings of the Arizal.
Summary: According to Kabbalistic tradition, one should not merge his hands together such that the fingers of the two hands interlock. According to some sources, one should also refrain from placing his hands behind his back.September 2, 2011 7:47 pm at 7:47 pm #1033284
OK. Thanks.September 2, 2011 7:59 pm at 7:59 pm #1033285
When there are conflicting sources, and minhagim, one should do what they are comfortable doing if they don’t have a minhag on that.
Unless they are Choshes for the negative outcome, than don’t be a wise guy and don’t do it.
passion4music; I heard it is mentioned in the Zohar not to keep hands behind the back for it brings dinim on the person.September 2, 2011 8:25 pm at 8:25 pm #1033286
Thanks!September 3, 2011 9:12 pm at 9:12 pm #1033288
I was educated in halacha with almost no kabbalistic input, and by circumstance I have very few minhagim, but many “positions in halacha”. I fail to understand the concept of “bringing din on the person”, or “bringing down din shamayim” or “harsh judgement”. We don’t accurately perceive the workings of din, nor are we meant to. We get what we deserve, no more and no less, because Hashem’s ways are perfect and his judgment is perfect. Unless there is something inherently wrong with a behavior, or if it encourages a bad midah, there is no reason to abstain. There are no shortcuts to bad things. I am with Old Man on this.September 4, 2011 6:14 am at 6:14 am #1033289
I’ll say it again for those who still do not understand my words. It is physically comfortable for my fingers when they are interlocked. So I interlock them on occasion. Sometimes I put my hands behind my back, it is a physically comfortable way to hold my hands. I do these actions without too much thought, as I suppose most people do. I’ve seen numerous learned people and rabbonim do it too, but I don’t think that matters one way or another. I think that it is unfortunate that interlocking fingers found its way to a daily halachah shiur. It is most definitely not related to halachah.September 4, 2011 6:44 am at 6:44 am #1033290
The Best BubbyParticipant
Aries 2756: Yes, it is assur to cut both the feet and the hands at the same time, as it is done for a mais. It is also a halacha that one should cut every other nail in sequence, as cutting all straight is done for a mais. As previously mentioned, we also don’t leave our feet facing the door, as we sleep, as this is the position a mais is put. Please tell your manucurist/pedicurist to cut every other nail. For instance, to start with the thumb, middle finger, pinky and then the forefinger and then ring finger. Also one should not cut their nails on Thursday, as they will regrow on Shabbos.
It is not bobba mainzes that we don’t dress a child with 2 people helping. It should only be one person dressing or helping another, as 2 people do a mais.
May we only share in many simachot with simcha!September 4, 2011 6:46 am at 6:46 am #1033291
“I think that it is unfortunate that interlocking fingers found its way to a daily halachah shiur. It is most definitely not related to halachah.”
The Aruch HaShulchan brings L’Halacha (OC 91:7)…What are your credentials that you feel you may argue with the Aruch HaShulchan?
Or do you just do what’s comfortable?September 4, 2011 7:03 am at 7:03 am #1033292
The Ohr Hachayim Hakadosh asks in Parshas Balak, how can a curse affect a person, is he Mechuyav Misa or not? He answers that Hashem is Maarich Af, that he pushes off punishment in case the person will do Teshuva. When there is a curse on the person it causes the actual Din, that technically exists on the person, to take effect. That is the idea here, too.
Please realize that the Tanaim and Amoraim who wrote the Zohar Hakadosh and the Arizal and all other Mekubalim spent their time studying Hashem’s ways. How, and why, do you feel free to dismiss their words with the wave of a hand.September 4, 2011 7:09 am at 7:09 am #1033293
Is this only interlocking fingers with both hands. I sometimes “curl” the fingers of one hand around the fingers of the other hand (straight out).September 4, 2011 2:04 pm at 2:04 pm #1033294
The Tziyz Eliezer has a T’shuvah about putting your hands behind your back during Shmoneh Esrei. Unless I forgot a major part of it, nowhere in that T’shuvah does he discuss an Issur of doing so in general.September 4, 2011 2:52 pm at 2:52 pm #1033295
Kapusta, only both hands.September 4, 2011 3:04 pm at 3:04 pm #1033296
One who is familiar with the substance, style and tone of the Aruch Hashulchan can easily distinguish between when he is writing halachah psukah, that is strict issur v’heter, from issues where he is advising or recommending to be “on the safe side”, without actually forbidding. In the paragraph discussing interlocking fingers, the Aruch Hashulchan is quite ambivalent, mentioning sources from both sides, siding with the “be on the safe side”, but ultimately leaving it up to the individual’s personal preference. Besides, the entire paragraph specifically concerns hand position during davening, and does not relate to a person’s conduct in everyday life. In any case, towards the end of a siman the Aruch Hashulchan often states his personal preferences but has no intention of stating an unequivocal psak that must be accepted by all. This is a good example. So I maintain my opinion as I previously stated.September 4, 2011 3:09 pm at 3:09 pm #1033297
If you hold one hand inside the other, or lock you fingers – how do you hold a siddur?September 4, 2011 9:11 pm at 9:11 pm #1033298
You are correct that he does not mention any issue interlocking the fingers when not davening.September 7, 2011 6:42 am at 6:42 am #1033299September 7, 2011 10:39 am at 10:39 am #1033300
I don’t have a cavalier attitude towards halachah, I just think that too many people confuse halachah with minhag or kabbalah, or even superstition. I do not think that just because a “sefer halachah” , i.e. the Kitzur of Rav Ganzfried, mentions a practice, that this practice becomes halachah. There are multiple issues where the accepted halachah changes through the generations, the discussion on yoshon is a good example. Quotes from the Sefer Chassidim do not become halachah, especially if one’s name is Avrohom, Yotzchak, Yaakov’ Shmuel, or ironically, Yehudah, v’hameivin yavin. In any case, I am not afraid of backlash.
Legufo shel inyan, the fact that the Aruch Hashulchan brings the Ba’al Hatanya as a source begs the question. It shows that there isn’t any early halachic opinion of sufficient stature to forbid interlocking fingers. I know that the Aruch Hashulchan had an affinity for chassidus and especially Reb Shneur Zalman, but if that’s the best he could do, (Rishonim? Tur? Mechaber? Rama? Magen Avraham? Anybody home today?) then it’s not very convincing. After all, fingers have been around for a long time.
I regret that my use of the word “comfortable” was misinterpreted, and I hope it was not intentional. If my posts are reread, it is clear that I meant that I like to hold my fingers that way, just like some people like to put their hands in their pockets. It has nothing to do with my halachic comfort level. If someone out there wants to jump on me for my hashkofos, I can only hope that the moderators will allow me to express them. Then I’ll be more than happy to be jumped on, provided I get to defend myself.September 7, 2011 1:54 pm at 1:54 pm #1033301
Interesting that you brought that up. I recently was heading to get a mani/pedi and was in a rush so I mentioned that I might do it at the same time. My brother was in the car and mentioned that it might be a problem.September 7, 2011 9:05 pm at 9:05 pm #1033302
Old man: more likely, the Aruch HaShulchan quotes the words of the Shulchan Aruch HaRav because they are clearly structured. The original source for this Halacha is, in fact, the Taz OC 95:3 based on his interpretation of the Gemara Shabbos 10a; quite reputable early Halachic sources.September 11, 2011 9:46 pm at 9:46 pm #1033303
any response???September 12, 2011 8:56 am at 8:56 am #1033304
The Taz definitely frowns upon interlocking fingers, it’s unclear whether he meant only during tefillah or at any time B’es Shalom. His language, however, proves my point, which is that refraining from interlocking fingers is kabbalistic/mystical and not halachah. The mere fact that the Taz mentions it does not make it halachah. His language (?????…???? ??? ?? ????, ?????)is clearly nonhalachic, but instead kabbalistic. The terminology used is reserved for mystical consequences that supposedly were tried and true. For those who are concerned about mystical implications to seemingly innocuous practices, I would say to stay far away from interlocking fingers. But this is not halachah.
As far as the Aruch Hashulchan quoting, he could have easily quoted the Taz, chose to quote Rav Shneur Zalman, and I don’t think it matters much. But the admonition is not halachah, but kabbalah.September 12, 2011 6:38 pm at 6:38 pm #1033305
WILL YOU ALL LEAVE MY GRANDPA ALONE?!?!
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