From the Rav’s Desk: Shaalos and Teshuvos on Misc. subjects

When passing someone a food, may one take from the food before he takes?

It is common belief that table etiquette requires an individual to first pass the food that he is asked to pass down before taking it for himself. I’m not aware of any source for such a concept in Jewish law, and on the contrary, it is ruled that when the waiter serves the food that he is to be given the food immediately, perhaps even prior to the people receiving it, and hence why should the individual passing the food be any worse than the waiter. Likewise, it is recorded that the Gadol Hashulchan is to take food first, and hence if the person being asked to pass the food is the Gadol Hashulchan, then from the letter of the law he should be taking first. Likewise, there is a contrary table etiquette which states that you should not ask someone to pass you the food until he has had a chance to take himself, and that the food should be passed from one diner to the next. Accordingly, I see no issue with the person taking first before he passes it on, nonetheless, to negate any possible rudeness of table etiquette as perceived by the person who asked you, I would recommend simply telling him “do you mind if I take first.”

Sources: See Michaber 169:1 regarding waiter; 170:12 regarding Gadol taking first

No, proceeds from gambling should not be used for funding the writing of a Sefer Torah. It is said in the name of the Baal Shem Tov that he once attributed a Torah scroll’s constant invalidations to the fact it was funded using proceeds made from gambling.

See: Shaiy Lamorah p. 243; Torah Vechaim 213; Birchas Moadecha Lechaim Derush 1; Chashukei Chemed Menachos p. 386; See also Igros Kodesh Rayatz 2,776

Yes. This restriction applies only during Shiva.

About The Author

Leave A Comment?

You must be logged in to post a comment.