Blowing of the Shofar 5

Not to talk of irrelevant matters until after Musaf:[1]

One must beware not to talk of irrelevant matters between the Tekios Meyushav [which is the first set of blows that is sounded after Kerias Hatorah] and the Tekios Meumad [which is the second set of blows in Musaf].[2] One is not to talk until after the completion of these blows sounded in Musaf. This applies for both the Baal Tokeia, who said the blessing over the Shofar, and the congregation, that did not say a blessing over the Shofar but heard it from the Baal Tokeia, nevertheless even they may not talk until after the Tekios Meumad.[3]

Matters relating to the Tekios or prayer:[4] It is only initially forbidden to speak of irrelevant matters between the two sets of blows. However it is even initially permitted to speak of matters relating to the prayer or blowing.[5]

Bedieved if one talked:[6] If one transgressed and spoke between the Tekios of Meyushav and Meumad he nevertheless is not required to repeat the blessing over the blows of Meumad. This applies for both the Baal Tokeia and the listeners. This applies even if he spoke of irrelevant matters.[7]

Talking between the blessing and the blowing: See Chapter 2 Halacha 9C

Talking between blows of Meyushav: See Chapter 3 Halacha 9!



One may not talk of irrelevant matters from the time he hears the beginning of Shofar blowing after Kerias Hatorah until after Musaf. However one may speak of matters relating to the Shofar and Davening .


Q&A on not speaking until after Davening

May one say Asher Yatzar after using the bathroom?

Yes.[8] However some Poskim[9] rule that one is to delay the recital of Asher Yatzar until after the blows of Musaf.


If one sees lightning or hears thunder prior to the conclusion of Musaf may he say the blessing?[10]



May one say Tehillim or learn Torah during this time?

It is forbidden for one to learn Torah verbally until after Musaf. This applies even prior to Chazaras Hashatz. However it is permitted to think Torah in one’s mind.[11] One may however even verbally learn matters of Torah that relate to the Tekios.[12] Some[13] also permit one to say Tehillim during this time.


May one talk after the blowing of Musaf, prior to hearing the extra blows after Musaf?

It is proper to refrain from talking unrelated speech until after the finals blows are sounded after Davening.[14] Hence one is to refrain from talk until after the 30 blows are sounded after Tehillim.[15] However from the letter of the law one is permitted to talk of even unrelated matters once the sounds of Musaf have been completed.[16]


Confessing [Viduiy] during Shofar blowing:[17]

In between the sets of the Shofar blowing[18] [of Meyushav[19]] one is to confess his sins quietly.[20] [Some[21] however write that this ruling applies only to the Baal Tokea. Others[22] conclude that practically it is not the Chabad custom to confess between the Tekios. According to all one must stop confessing as soon as the Tekios resume.[23]]


Sparks of Chassidus:[24]

The confession made between Tekios is not for the sake of fulfilling the Mitzvah of Teshuvah, as otherwise we would have a set order of confession said even not during the Tekios, as is done on Yom Kippur[25], rather it is an expression of the longing of one’s soul to attach to Hashem.[26] This is the loftiest of moments within Rosh Hashanah in general and the blowing of Shofar in particular.[27] One is able to change his entire essence at this time.[28]


Is one to verbalize his confession or is it to be said only in his mind?

One is to verbalize the confession and not say it merely in his mind.[29] However some[30] rule that it is not to be verbalized at all due to an interval. [See footnote for opinion of the Rebbe.[31]]


Looking at the Baal Tokeia:[32]

Based on Kabala one is to stare at the face of the Baal Tokeia after he concludes the Tekios. The Baal Tokeia is to thus face the congregation after he returns to his place after completing the blows.

[1] 592/7; Michaber 592/3

[2] The reason: The reason for this is because the blessing said over the 1st set of blows includes also the second set of blows, [and it is forbidden to make an interval between a blessing and its Mitzvah]. [Admur ibid; Taz 592/2; Biur Hagr”a; M”B 592/8] Now although in truth the blows of Meyushav and Meumad are considered like a single Mitzvah [see below] nevertheless since it appears like two Mitzvos he may not initially speak of irrelevant matters. [Admur ibid]

The Piyutim: The Piyutim that are read during the repetition are not considered an interval as they relate to the prayer. [Chayeh Adam 141/9; Kaf Hachaim 692/177]

The Yehi Ratzon: Some Poskim rule that the Yehi Ratzon [and Viduiy] that some recite between the sets of the Tekios Meyushav is considered an interval. [Derech Hachaim; Tosefes Chaim on Chayeh Adam ibid; M”B 592/12] Others however argue that the Yehi Ratzon is not an interval. [Olas Shmuel 88; Siddur Yaavetz; Shaareiy Tziyon 592/15; Kaf Hachaim 592/17] The Chabad custom is not to recite the Yehi Ratzon between the Tekios [Igros Kodesh 3/196] however the Yehi Ratzon after the Tekios is recited. [See Otzer Minhagei Chabad 298]

[3] Since they fulfilled their obligation of the blessing through hearing the blessing of the Baal Tokeia it is therefore considered as if they said the blessing and hence they too are not to speak in-between. [Birkeiy Yosef 592/2; Kaf Hachaim 592/15]

[4] Admur ibid; Rama 592/3; Darkei Moshe 592/2 in name of Mahril; M”A 592/3; M”B 592/14

[5] The reason: As in truth the two sets is all considered a single Mitzvah [as explained in the next footnote] [ibid] Perhaps one can suggest that the explanation is as follows: Since they appear like two different Mitzvos therefore one should not speak in between as this can teach people to speak between two Mitzvos and nevertheless not repeat the blessing. However this suspicion only applies by irrelevant matters, as only irrelevant matters cause the blessing to be repeated between two Mitzvos. However relevant matters are valid Bedieved even between two Mitzvos [See Admur ibid as well as Admur 167/9; 206/3; Seder 9/1; Ketzos Hashulchan 37/7] and hence there is no need here to refrain from talking of relevant matters, as a) in truth it is one Mitzvah and hence even initially allowed and b) even if the onlooker will learn to do this between two Mitzvos, in any event it is valid Bedieved. Vetzaruch Iyun!

[6] Admur ibid; Rama 592/3

[7] The reason: Although one who recites a single blessing on behalf of two Mitzvos is required to repeat the blessing prior to the second Mitzvah if he spoke in between, as explained in 8/21 [regarding speaking between two pairs or Tzitzis] and 25/18  [regarding speaking between the Yad and Rosh Tefillin] nevertheless since the blows of Meyushav and Meumad are considered like a single Mitzvah therefore if one transgressed and spoke between them even of irrelevant matters he nevertheless is not required to repeat the blessing, as an interval never invalidates the blessing when one is still in the midst of the same Mitzvah. This is clearly seen in the law of one who speaks while in a Sukkah or while wearing Tefillin in which case it is not considered an interval even though every moment that he is sitting in the Sukkah and wearing Tefillin he is fulfilling the Mitzvah of Hashem. Furthermore even initially he may speak while in the Sukkah and wearing Tefillin, however here by Shofar since it appears like two Mitzvos he may not initially speak of irrelevant matters. [Admur ibid]

The reason the two sets of blows are considered one Mitzvah: The institution of the Sages to blow in Musaf did not obligate the congregation to blow the Shofar on two different occasions, before and after Musaf, but rather merely that they should fulfill their Biblical obligation of Shofar blowing within the Musaf prayer. Nevertheless the custom of all Jewry became to blow two sets of blows, before Musaf and during Musaf; before Musaf in order to fulfill the Biblical obligation and during Musaf in order to fulfill the institution of the Sages. The reason for this is because we desire to confuse the heavenly prosecutor prior to the Musaf prayer in order so he does not prosecute during the Musaf prayer, as fulfilling the Mitzvah of blowing the Shofar enters the Satan into a state of confusion and distress. [Thus in order so the blowing within Musaf does not interfere with the desire to confuse the Satan prior to Musaf the custom evolved to establish two occasions of blowing Shofar.] Now, we say the blessing prior to the first set of blows which fulfills the Biblical obligation and then continue to perform the Rabbinical obligation to blow the Shofar within the order of the blessings recited in Musaf as the Sages instituted. [ibid] [Seemingly the explanation of this is as follows: The Sages did not simply institute to blow Shofar during Musaf, they instituted that one is to fulfill his Biblical obligation of the Tekios in Musaf. Now, this created a Rabbinical form of Biblical Tekios, Tekios that must be heard during Musaf, as the actual Biblical Tekios can be heard at any time. Thus when one decides to blow the Biblical Tekios before Musaf he has not yet fulfilled his Rabbinical obligation of the Biblical Tekios. For this reason it is all considered one Mitzvah as from a Rabbinical perspective the Biblical Mitzvah that was started before Musaf is not completed until it is blown within Musaf and it is hence all a continuation of the same Biblical Mitzvah. This answers a number of queries on the above explanation: a) How can we uproot the decree of the Sages and precede the Biblical Tekios to before Musaf? b) How is it considered a single Mitzvah of one is Biblical and the other is Rabbinical? C) Why we would think that Musaf invalidates the Biblical Tekios and thus need a special Halacha in 593/4 to teach us otherwise.]

[8] Minchas Yitzchak 3/44; 4/47-48; Sheivet Halevy 5/66; Tzitz Eliezer 11/45; Kinyan Torah 5/56; Piskeiy Teshuvos 592/4

The reason: As it has the same status as Pesukei Dezimra.

[9] Daas Torah 592

The reason: As the time between the two Mitzvos has the same status as Birchas Shema.

[10] Piskeiy Teshuvos ibid; See Admur 66/4; This would apply even if the two sets of blows have a status of Birchas Shema.

[11] Har Tzevi 1/42; Piskeiy Teshuvos 592/4

[12] Leket Yosher from the student of the Terumas Hadeshen p. 128; brought in Minchas Yitzchak 4/48

[13] Yesod Veshoresh Havoda 11; Piskeiy Teshuvos ibid; however perhaps there he is only referring to Chazaras Hashatz of Shacharis, Vetzaruch Iyun; See however Otzer Minhagei Chabad p. 128 that the Rebbe at times would say Tehillim during the Chazan’s recital of Hineni Heani. Seemingly the reason this is not considered an interval is because it is similar to matters relating to prayer which one may even initially speak of during this time.

[14] Chayeh Adam 141/9; Kaf Hachaim 592/17; The Rebbe’s custom was to refrain from talking until after the last Tekios sounded after Davening. Only then would he wish the Kohanim a Yasher Koach. However in the year 1992 the Rebbe changed from his custom and recited Yasher Koach even before the last blows. [Otzer Minhagei Chabad 340]

The reason: It is proper not to make an interval in order so the blessing cover also these blows.

[15] Kaf Hachaim ibid

[16] 592/7 that the prohibition is only between the Tekios Meyushav and Meumad; 590/19 that these last Tekios don’t even have to be redone if they were invalidated.

[17] Siddur Admur; Admur 584/2; M”A 584/2; Shlah 214b; Arizal in Shaar Hakavanos 90a; Peri Eitz Chaim Shaar 26/5; Kaf Hachaim 584/6; 592/17; Minchas Elazar 1/75; Alef Hamagen 590/46; Mentioned in Sichas 1944 p. 31 and 41-42; See Otzer Minahgei Chabad p. 124-125

Wording in Admur 584/2: “Furthermore even actual confession is not to be refrained from being said between the Tekios, as the heavenly prosecutor is in a state of confusion during that time. It is [thus] proper for one to silently confess between the Tekios while the congregation is reciting the prayer of Yehi Ratzon.

How is there even time to confess? To note however that in the Nussach in the Siddur the Yehi Ratzon is not recited between the sets, as will be explained next. Nevertheless there is a little bit of time between the sets, as the Baal Tokeia usually takes a small break. [Shlah 214b]

[18] There are three sets in total, for a total of two confessions recited between the first and second set and the second and third set. [Siddur ibid]

[19] Arizal ibid; One is not to confess by any other time on R”H.

[20] The reason: Although in general we refrain from confessing on Rosh Hashanah, nevertheless between the Tekios one may confess as the heavenly prosecutor is in a state of confusion during that time. [Admur ibid; Arizal ibid] The Peri Eitz Chaim ibid brings a contradiction in this matter in whether one may confess on Rosh Hashanah, and he concludes that one may confess silently. Nevertheless he says that even the quiet confession he would only say in-between the Tekios when the Satan is in confusion. [Kaf Hachaim 584/6; See Piskeiy Teshuvos 592 footnote 18] The Shlah Hakadosh ibid states that at the time of the confession one is to cry and have sincere regret, asking forgiveness from Hashem.

[21] Otzer Minhagei Chabad 291 in name of Melech Bemisibo; however from there the matter still remains unclear as the Rebbe concludes that perhaps some are accustomed to do so and so is the implication from the Siddur.

[22] Rav Raskin p. 527

[23] Piskeiy Teshuvos 592 footnote 18; See Chapter 2 Halacha 11 p. 202

[24] Michtav Klali printed in Likkutei Sichos 4; See Igros Kodesh 23/512; Likkutei Dibburim 99-102

[25] As simply due to that the Satan will not be confused if we confess is not enough of a reason to nullify the Mitzvah of Teshuvah. [ibid]

[26] Meaning that one confesses his sins for the sake of attachment to G-d, and due to a strong passion to attach to him. This is in contrast to normal confession which comes from a feeling of remorse.

[27] Sichas of Rebbe Rayatz brought in Otzer Minhagei Chabad 294

[28] Sichas 1944 p. 31 and 41-42

[29] Arizal brought in Kaf Hachaim 584/6; Minchas Elazar 1/75 that it is to be verbalized; Simple implication of Admur 584/2 and Siddur which rules it is to be said quietly [implying with verbalization]; Or Letziyon 1/39

The reason it is not an interval: It does not constitute an interval being that it is part of the matters of Davening which are allowed to be said in between the blows. [ibid; 592/7]

[30] Alef Hamagen 590/46; Derech Hachaim brought in M”B 592/12; Takanas Rav Akiva Eiger; Mahril Diskin 79 [KU”A]; Yabia Omer 1/36; Kaf Hachaim 592/19 regarding Yehi Ratzon, however seemingly regarding the confession he would agree it is to be verbalized, as he concludes there.

[31] Otzer Minhagei Chabad 292 brings contradictory statements in the name of the Rebbe in two different years of Hamelech Bemisibo. He concludes there based on the Sicha of the Previous Rebbe on the matter of Gaguim that the correct stance is that it should be said only in one’s mind. However in truth the matter is not clear from the Sicha of the Rebbe Rayatz, as he is merely referring to the feeling behind the confession, and not whether it is to be verbalized or not.

[32] Igros Kodesh Rebbe Rayatz 3/342; Kuntrus Limud Hachassidus p. 11; See Otzer Minhagei Chabad p. 127 that a) this is a Segula for Chatas Neurim; b) Is a Minhag Kabala and not a Minhag Chabad c) Is mainly to be done by Vekareiv Pezureinu.

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