Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Parsha Chabura Yisro:Beracha Sh'eino Tzricha

This week’s shiur was about the issur of “lo sisa es shem lashav”. Everyone agrees that this issur includes the prohibition of making an unnecessary or false shevuah with Hashem’s name. However, there is a machlokes whether this issur also includes saying Hashem’s name for no reason or making an unnecessary beracha.

Source In Gemarah

The gemara in Berachos 33a says that if one makes a beracha sh’eino tzricha (an unnecessary beracha) then one violates the prohibition of “lo sisa shem lashav”. The gemara in Temurah (4a) also says that if one says Hashem’s name for no reason then one is oveir an issur aseh of “es hashem elokacha tirah” (fearing Hashem). From here it would appear that a beracha sheino tzricha is an issur m’d’oreisa.

Shittas Rishonim

1) Tosofos in Rosh Hashana (33a) and the Rosh in Kiddushin (Perek 1 49) quote Rabbeinu Tam that a beracha sheino tzricha is only an issur m’d’rabanan. Even though the gemara says there is an issur of “lo sisa”, this is only an asmachta. Furthermore, Tosfos explains that the issur aseh mentioned in the gemara in Temurah only applies when one is not saying Hahsem’s name in a beracha. If one says Hashem’s name in a beracha then there would be no issur aseh of “hashem elokecha tira”.
2)The Rambam disagrees. The Rambam says in a few places that making an unnecessary beracha is assur min hatorah because of “lo sisa”. The Rambam writes this in Hil Berachos (1:15) as well as in Hil Shevuous (12:9). The Rambam also writes this in Shut Rambam Siman 84 where he says that those places that read the megillah on the 14th and 15h of Adar, do not make a beracha on the 15th since it is a safeik and to make an unnecessary beracha is assur min hatorah.

Nafka Mina

1) Women making a beracha on mitzvos aseh she’ha’zman grama. Everyone holds that even though women are patur from mitzvos aseh she’ha’zman grama they can still do the mitzvah. The question is what about making a beracha. Tosfos holds that women are able to make the beracha since making an unnecessary beracha is only an issur d’rabanan. The Rambam however paskens (Hil Tzitzis 3:9) that women can not make a beracha. This is l’shitaso that a beracha sheino tzricha is assur m’d’oreis.

2) The Rambam paskens (berachos 1116) that if one is mesupak whether something requires a beracha one does not make a beracha. This includes the halacha that an androganus (safeik male or female) does not make a beracha on Milah (Rambam Mila 3:6). This is the Rambam l’shitaso that since a beracha sheino tzricha is assur m’d’oreisa, one should not make a beracha m’safeik. However, the Kesef Mishna points out that the Rambam holds if one is not sure if he said k’riyas sh’ma you repeat it with the beracha. The reason is because in a case where you are obligated in the asiyas hamitzvah then you cam make a beracha. By k’riyas shema you have to say k’riyas shema and therefore you can make a beracha. By the case of the androganus and mila, the safeik is in the etzem hachiyuv. (The Mishna Berura in Siman 67:1 writes that not everyone agrees with this chiluk)

3) The Magan Avraham (216:6) brings down different opinions whether one can obligate himself in an extra beracha on Shabbos in order to recite 100 berachos. For example, can one purposely hold off on having desert until after bentching in order to make another beracha acharona. (Note: if one does not want to eat desert now but wants to eat it later, you can do so. The question is where you want to eat it now but the only reason you are not is to get an extra beracha). According to the Rambam that beracha sheino tzricha is assur m’d’oreisa, one probably would not be allowed to do this. (ayin sham for halacha l’ma’aseh).

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