Maariv on Tisha Beav

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Removing the Paroches:[1] [Prior to Maariv] one is to remove the Paroches from the Aron.[2] [In some communities, the Paroches is not removed, but rather moved to the side, hence revealing the doors of the Aron.[3] The Chabad custom is to also remove the covering of the Amud of the Chazan, as well as the Bima.[4]]

Diminishing light:[5] At night, one is to only light bare minimum of light needed to read Eicha and the Kinos.[6]

Sitting arrangements: One is not required to switch from his normal place of sitting on Tisha B’av.[7] One may not sit on a chair when Davening Maariv and is thus to either stand or sit on the ground. One is to place an interval between the floor and his body, as explained in the previous Chapter 6 Halacha 14.

Davening like a mourner:[8] By Maariv, one is to Daven slowly and in the tone of a mourner.

Ata Chonantanu:[9] When Tisha B’av falls on Motzei Shabbos, one is to recite Atah Chonantanu within Shemoneh Esrei.[10] If one forgot to say Ata Chonantanu, he does not need to repeat Shemoneh Esrei, as in any event he will not be eating until he makes Havdala over wine on Sunday night.[11] [He must however say Baruch Hamavdil prior to doing any Melacha.]

Kaddish: All the Kaddeishim that are recited from after Eicha until one leaves the Shul the next day [after Shacharis] omit the stanza of Tiskabel.[12] However, prior to Eicha, Tiskabel is recited in Kaddish.[13] [Thus, the order is as follows: After Shemoneh Esrei of Maariv, Kaddish with Tiskabel is recited. After Eicha, until Mincha, Kaddish is recited without Tiskabel.]

Meorei Haeish: One is to recite the blessings of Meorei Haeish on Motzei Shabbos upon seeing a candle.[14] One is to recite the blessing prior to Eicha.[15] [Some[16] write that one may recite the blessing any time prior to Eicha, and hence if one is home prior to Maariv, he may say the blessing at home with his family and fulfill the obligation with them. Practically, the custom is like the former opinion to recite Borei Meorei Haiesh in Shul after Maariv, prior to Eicha.[17] The women at home are to recite the blessing over Meorei Haeish on their own.[18] Some[19] write one is not to use the regular Havdala candle for Meorei Haeish but is rather to join to small candles together.] In the event that one did not recite the blessing of Meorei Haeish before Eicha, it is to be recited afterwards.[20] If the blessing was not said at night, it may not be said the next day.[21]

Eicha: After Maariv, one reads Megillas Eicha.[22] Eicha is recited slowly and in the tone of a mourner. [The reader is to make a small break between each verse, and a larger break between each Eicha.[23] The congregation is to read along silently together with the Chazan.[24]] Each time the word Eicha is recited the Baal Korei is to raise his voice. When the Chazan reaches the verse of Hashiveinu, the congregation recites it in a loud voice and the Chazan then says it aloud; the congregation then repeats it again aloud and the Chazan then repeats after the congregation.[25]

Kinos:[26] After Eicha, one reads the Kinos designated for the night of Tisha B’av.

Ata Kadosh:[27] After the completion of Eicha and Kinos the congregation recites Veata Kadosh [omitting the verses of Uva Letziyon and Veani Zos Brisi[28]]. This applies even when Tisha B’av falls on Motzei Shabbos, in which case one skips Vayehi Noam and begins from Veata Kadosh.

Kaddish without Tiskabel:[29] After Veata Kadosh, the Chazan recites Kaddish without Tiskabel.

Aleinu: After Kaddish, Aleinu is recited. This is then followed by the mourners Kaddish.

Greetings: Upon leaving Shul, one is to avoid wishing a Shavua Tov and the like to a friend.[30] One is not to walk in groups but rather alone in a state of mourning.[31]



Should also women say Eicha and Kinos?

Some Poskim[32] rule women are required to hear Kinos and Eicha. However, the custom of women is not to be careful in this matter.[33]


Should one read Eicha and say Kinos even if he is not with a Minyan?[34]



[1] Rama 559:2

[2] The reason: This is based on the verse [Eicha 2:17] “Betza Imraso” [ibid] This means to say that we figuratively fulfill the command of Hashem to destroy the Temple.

[3] Nitei Gavriel 54:3

[4] Nitei Gavriel 54:5

[5] Michaber 559:3; Rosh end of Taanis

[6] The reason: As the verse states “In darkness He placed me”. [M”B 559:14]

[7] Rama 559:4

The reason: As it suffices for one to sit on the ground to show his state of mourning. [M”B 559:21]

[8] Rama 559:1

[9] 559:1; Admur 294:6

[10] Rama ibid

[11] Vetzaruch Iyun if he accidently eats on Motzei Tisha B’av without Havdala, or broke his fast without Havdala for whatever reason, must he repeat Shemoneh Esrei? See Ketzos Hashulchan 93 footnote 9. SSH”K 62 footnote 95 rules he is not to recite Ata Chonantanu or repeat Shemoneh Esrei.

[12] Rama 559:4

[13] Taz 559:2; M”A 559:1; Kitzur SHU”A 124:1; M”B 559:4

[14] Michaber ibid; Maharitz Geios Havdala; Mordechai Taanis Remes 638; Orchos Chaim Havdala 1; Sifrei Minhagim of Rishonim

[15] Taz 556:1 in name of Beis Yosef 556 in name of Abudarahm p. 69; Elya Raba 556:2; M”B 556:1

The reason: As in Eicha it says “he has placed me in darkness”. Hence the blessing is to be recited beforehand [as afterwards we are to emphasize darkness]. [Taz ibid] Alternatively, the reason is because one is not to read Eicha with light and hence benefit from it prior to saying a blessing over it. [Birkeiy Yosef 693:1] Practically, however, we do not rule this way, and it is permitted to benefit from light before saying Meorei Haeish. [Kaf Hachaim 556:2; See our Sefer “The Laws of Purim” and the “Laws of Motzei Shabbos”]

Other Opinions: Some Poskim rule one is to light the candle at home after coming home from Shul after Eicha. [Maharil Tisha B’av 16; Many Poskim, brought in Elya Raba ibid]

[16] Piskeiy Teshuvos 556:1; Nitei Gavriel 95:4; Hiskashrus 940; Likkut of Rav Braun

[17] Sheivet Haleivi 7:77 “One is not to swerve from the Minhag Yisrael that everyone says:hears the blessing in Shul prior to Eicha and the women are to say the blessings themselves at home”; Luach Kolel Chabad; The Rebbes custom was to say Meoreiy Haeish in Shul after Maariv, prior to Eicha; Rav Eliyahu Landa that so was always the custom, to say it in Shul after Maariv and not at home prior to Maariv. Rav Groner confirmed the custom is to say it after Maariv, before Eicha.

The reason: See Tehila Ledavid 293:1 and Kitzur Halachos Shabbos p. 119 that one is not to say Havdala, which includes Meorei Haeish prior to Maariv; [In however the Sefer Pear Yisrael 1:207 he writes that the Alter Rebbe at times would say Havdala prior to Maariv.] Perhaps this is also due to the law of Kadima of Tadir, as Maariv is more Tadir. [See The laws of Chanukah regarding Chanukah candles versus Havdala and Bedikas Chametz and Sefiras Haomer regarding preceding Maariv because of Tadir] Likewise, it is improper for men to do Melacha before Maariv, even to light a candle, as brought in Admur 299:20, however if done for a Mitzvah it is allowed, and here too it is done for a Mitzvah. Likewise, in any event Eicha is said before Ata Kadosh.

[18] Shevet Halevi ibid; See Ketzos Hashulchan 96 footnote 12; So rules also Daas Torah 296; Ben Ish Chaiy Vayeitzei 24; Kaf Hachaim 296:54; Igros Moshe 2:47; Kinyan Torah 1:88; Beir Moshe 4:28; Kaneh Bosem 3:17; Sheivet Haleivi 6:42; 7:77; Yechaveh Daas 4:27; Ashel Avraham Mahadurah Tinyana; So is proven from Admur who does not mention anywhere any differentiation regarding women in the blessing of Meoreiy Haeish. Furthermore, even according to those Poskim [M”B in Biur Halacha 296 “Lo Yavdilu Leatzman”] who side women are exempt from the blessing of fire, they are nevertheless permitted to say the blessing as is the law by all Mitzvos that they are exempt from. [Ketzos Hashulchan 96 footnote 12]

[19] Piskeiy Teshuvos 556:1

[20] Taz ibid; Elya Raba ibid; P”M 556 M”Z 1; M”B 556:1

[21] Admur 299:9

[22] Michaber and Rama 559:2

[23] M”B 559:2

[24] M”B 559:15; Siddur Yaavetz

[25] Rama 559:1

[26] Michaber and Rama 559:2

[27] Michaber 559:2

[28] M”B 559:6 in name of Tur

The reason: As there is no redemption at night. Likewise, one does not say “Veani Zos Brisi” as it appears that one is making a covenant with the Kinos, and being that one may not learn Torah on Tisha B’av. [M”B ibid]

[29] Rama 559:4

[30] Nitei Gavriel 95:18 in name of Maharil “One goes like mourners and does not bless the children at night”; Vetzaruch Iyun as to why is this statement different than good night.

[31] M”B 559:41 in name of Shelah; Maharil; Nitei Gavriel 55:11

[32] Tur from Miseches Sofrim brought in M”A 282:6

[33] Piskeiy Teshuvos 559:2

[34] Chayeh Adam 135:19; Kitzur SHU”A 124:1; M”B 559:5 in name of Chayeh Adam

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