From where by the Bima is the Haftorah to be read?

* This article is an excerpt from the above book

From where on the Bima should the reader read the Haftorah?[1]

This matter is not recorded in Poskim. However, seemingly one should not read it in a position that one’s back is facing the Sefer Torah, or Aron.[2] Although, from the letter of the law, seemingly it is allowed.[3] Practically, the age-old Chabad custom is to read it to the right side of the Bima [i.e. if the Bima is facing east, then the reader stands to the south, which is to the right of the Baal Korei of Kerias Hatorah], due to the above reason so one’s back not be facing the Torah scroll. Nonetheless, the Rebbe was accustomed to read the Haftorah in front of the Bima, in the same area that the Baal Korei stood for Kerias Hatorah.[4] [However, in 770, the Bima is set up in a way that the people holding the Torah scrolls are positioned towards the ends of the Bima and hence the Rebbe’s back was never facing the Sefer Torah.[5]]


[1] See Nesivim Besedei Hashlichus 2 p. 60

[2] See Michaber Y.D. 282:1; Hilchos Beis Hakenses in Shaar Hakolel 9; M”B 660:3; Nesivim Besedei Hashlichus 2 p. 60; Piskei Teshuvos 150 footnote 89

[3] See Michaber Y.D. 282:2 that once it reaches its place, whether still being held or not, one may sit, and seemingly the same applies regarding standing with one’s back to it; See also regarding standing with one’s back to the Aron that we permit standing temporarily for the sake of the speech with one’s back facing it. [See Michaber OC 150:5; Levush 150:5; Taz OC 150:2; YD 282:1; P”M 150 M”Z 2; 141 M”Z; Shaareiy Efraim 3 Pischeiy Shearim 9; M”B 150:14; Shaar Hatziyon 150:13; Leket Yosher p. 31; Teshuvah Meahavah 2:228; Aruch Hashulchan Y.D. 282:2; Keren Ledavid 36; Mikdash Me’at 282:4; Tzedaka Umishpat 16; Chelkas Yaakov 3:132; Minchas Yitzchak 5:78; Piskeiy Teshuvos 150:18] Despite the above allowance, some are nevertheless stringent to stand to the side of the Aron.

[4] Maaseh Melech 2:3-19; Nesivim Besedei Hashlichus ibid

[5] Nesivim Besedei Hashlichus ibid

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