From the Rav’s Desk: Learning Chitas, Rambam, Daf Yomi before Davening

  1. Question: [Sunday, 10th Tamuz, 5781]

Am I allowed to learn my daily learning Shiurim before Davening Shacharis, such as Chitas [except Tehillim which I do after Davening], Rambam, and Daf Yomi? I find that this is when my head is clearest to learn, and I have the time to do so without getting bogged down with all of the work of the day which often causes me to sometimes miss saying it. To add, that it also helps me prepare for Davening and come with a clearer head.


Yes, you may do so.

Explanation: In general, it is prohibited to learn Torah from the time of Alos Hashachar until one Davens Shacharis, as we suspect that one may become engulfed within his studies and forget to stop to say Shema and Shemoneh Esrei within their legal times. However, a number of exceptions are recorded regarding this general prohibition, including:

  • One who is Davening with a minyan: One who has a set Minyan for Shacharis that he Davens by, is allowed to learn before Davening.
  • Simple learning of Halachos: It is permitted to learn clear Halachic rulings which contains no deep analysis before Davening, and on the contrary, it should even initially be done as it brings one to a state of joy which is required for Davening.

Thus, it would be permitted for one to learn Chitas and Rambam and even Daf Yomi before Davening, if he has a set Minyan that he Davens with. Furthermore, even if he doesn’t have a set Minyan that he Davens with, and is accustomed to Daven at home, it would still be permitted so long as he does not learn it in great depth, which is usually the case, as it is not included in the type of learning that is forbidden, and so is the worldly custom to permit such learning, as recorded in the Poskim.

Sources: See Admur 89:4; 93:3; Michaber 89:6; 93:3; Aruch Hashulchan 89:27; Nimueki Orach Chaim 89; Avnei Tzedek 19; Piskeiy Teshuvos 89:23; 93:4; Igros Kodesh 17:146

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