Halachot For 9 B’Av 5780

Halachos of Tishah B’Av

  1. Someone that tested positive and is quarantined, if he has no
    or light symptoms, a Rav should be asked.
  2. Eicha, Kinos. People not going to Shul should say them at home.
    It is best to say fewer with Kavono rather than lots with.
  3. Lights.Theirminhag is to reducetheamount oflight based on the
    Medrash Eicha: “Hashem said to the Malachim, ‘When a human
    king is in mourning, he extinguishesthe lanterns;I do this too’”.
    This implies that it applies only to Shul but not home. Some
    opinions argueit applies to homes too, based onthe Verse: “In darkness
    He placedme”.
    Doing Melacha
  4. Today, the universal minhag is not to do “work”, at least until
    “chatzos” to ensure that we don’t lose focus of the mourning.
    Conducting business for profit is included in the prohibition.One
    is only permitted in case of possible loss, for children or a sick.
  5. Work which does not take up time is allowed, since it does not
    distractfromtheaveilus.Accordingly,one may send a single email
    if it is. Still, any G-d-fearing person should avoid everything and
  6. Grocery store. One may open his store to sell staples such as
    bread, milk, and the like for children and others who are not
    fasting, as well asfor afterthefast.
  7. Tishah B’Av day camp. One may organize a Tishah B’Av day
    camp for local children, even for pay. This is not a problem of
    business on Tishah B’Av since it is a necessity, as it makes fasting
    and aveilus much easier on theparents.
  8. Other than construction or other loud work, one may have a
    non- Jew do melachah for himeven in hishouse.
    Greeting People
  9. One may not ask someone else how he is doing on Tishah B’Av.
    Similarly, onemay notsay “Good morning”. One may wish “Mazel
    tov” on a simchah since that is just a brochoh. One may alsowish
    someonea“Refuah shleimah”.
  10. One may answer “Hello” on the phone since that is not a greeting
    as much as a way of answering the phone. Justmake sure notto
    say “Sholom”on thephone.
  11. For the same reason that we do not greet people, one may also
    not send someone a gift. One may, however, send food to a
    friend or neighborfor afterthe fast.
    Sitting on the Floor
  12. On Tishah B’Av night and Tishah B’Av day until Mincha [or
    chatzos], we sit on the floor in Shul. One who finds it difficult
    to sit on the floor may place a cushion underneath himself
    or sit on a low bench.
  13. The sick or the elderly or the pregnant, that cannot sit on a
    low seat may sit at a regular chair.
  14. The person who does hagbaha of the Sefer Torah and the
    sandek at a bris may sit on a regular chair.
  15. Some poskim hold that sitting on the steps in front of the
    aron or bimah is considered sitting on the floor. However,
    others point out that the Maharil specifically sat on the floor.
  16. Bus. When traveling on a bus or train one does not need to
    stand throughout the ride since his intent in sitting is for
    safety reasons and not for pleasure or comfort.
  17. The Knesses Hagedolah forbids smoking on Tishah B’Av. The
    Mishnah Brura writes that one may smoke after Chaztzos, but
    he says that there are Acharonim who are meikel. Thus, if
    someone is used to smoking and it would be difficult for him
    notto, hemay bemeikel after chatzos in private.
  18. Pregnant and nursing women fast on Tishah B’Av as they do
    on Yom Kippur. Many poskim in Eretz Yisroel rule that in hot
    places, a pregnant woman, whether in the beginning of her
    pregnancy [after 40 days] or the end, may eat and drink.
    Even so, if she can fast until the morning, it is proper to do
    so. If she is parched and needs to drink in the middle of the
    night, she may. Each woman should ask her own shailah.
  19. Nursing women fast. If they feel weak or dizzyorthattheyare
    not producing enough milk, they do not need to continue to
  20. If a nursing woman’s baby sometimestakesformula,she can
    nurse him less and supplement with some formula. If her
    baby does not take formula,she is not obligated to try to give
    it to him to fast since mother’s milk is better for a baby’s
    health. Thus, in such a case, ifshe is weak or the like, she may
    Recently Gave Birth
  21. The Mechaber holds that a woman within 30 days of giving
    birth does not need to fast. The Rama says within seven
    days; but after that, she must fast, even if she feels she
    needs to eat, unless she is in great pain or somewhat ill, in
    which casefasting is potentially dangerous ( ד” י ב “מ .(However,
    the Aruch Hashulchan ( ח ” ס (writes that the Rama’s words
    were for his day, but in today’s weaker generation, a woman
    within 30 days of giving birth should not fast at all. Each
    woman should ask her own shailah.
  22. A woman who miscarried, lo aleinu, at least 40 days after
    conception has the status of a woman who gave birth for
    these purposes.
  23. A person who is weak or in pain may eat on Tishah B’Av, even
    if he is not in danger.A person with somewhat of a fever should
    certainly not fast, nor should individuals with diabetes, high
    blood pressure, or the like. Chazal did not decree a fast for
    someone who is ill.
  24. Covid. Someone who is, lo aleinu, sick or tested positive is
    forbidden to fast, not even with Shiurim.
  25. Even if he doesn’t have a fever, if he feels weak due to the
    virus fromChina or hassymptoms ofthe flu – e.g., painsin the
    muscles, bones, chest, head, etc. – he should not fast at all and
    has amitzvah to eat anddrink.
  26. If someone experiences loss of taste or smell should stop

fasting as it is affecting his immune system.

  1. One who takes pills daily for health reasons may take his pills
    with some bitter water, e.g., strong tea and it’s not considered
    breaking the fast.
  2. One may not wash himself on Tishah B’Av, even with cold
    water. Onlywashing for pleasure isforbidden; if one’s body or
    hands are dirty, he may wash them to get rid of the dirt. If
    necessary, he may use soap.
  3. Netilas yodayim after waking up or using the bathroom is
    done untiltheknuckles.
  4. Due to the pandemic, frequent handwashing is necessary these
    days. Thus, one may wash his hands with soap since it is not for
    pleasure, butfor health. Thisissimilarto thehalachah about dirty
  5. Someone whoisilland iswashing to eatmaywashhisentirehand
    since he is not doing so for pleasure. The same istrue for a Kohein
    washing for Birkas Kohanim. The Poskim explain the difference
    between these instances and netilas yodayim in the morning.
  6. When cooking on Tishah B’Av, one may wash vegetables or
    utensils as needed even if his hands will get wet since that is
    not washing for pleasure. Some are careful to wear gloves, but
    thatisjust a chumra.
  7. Onemay not go to themikveh on Tishah B’Av even if hegoes
    every day.
  8. If one smells he may use deodorant and/or perfume.
  9. Creamsmay beusedformedicalpurposes butnottomoisturize
    or soften the skin.
  10. Hand sanitizer. Use of hand sanitizer is permitted as it is not for
    pleasure. Sanitizer should be applied to the whole hand.
  11. One should notusemakeuporlipstick,except for a kallah within
    30 days of her wedding.
  12. Only shoes made of leather or containing leather may not be
    worn. Shoes made of wood, fabric, or rubber may be worn.
  13. Nevertheless, there is a dispute among the poskim whether
    one may wear any comfortable shoes. Therefore, one who is
    machmir not to wear them will receive a brochoh
  14. Crocs. Women’s Crocs, which are made to also be worn
    outside like regular shoes, should preferably not be worn.
    Also, if someone wears regular Crocs outdoors throughout
    the year, it isimproper for him to wearthem on Tishah B’Av.
    One who only wears them at home, may wear them on
    Tishah B’Av.
    Motzei Tishah B’Av
    Kiddush Levanah
  15. We say Kiddush Levanah on Motzei Tishah B’Av. This is
    because Moshiach ben Dovid is born on Motzei Tishah B’Av,
    so we “inform the moon” and Klal Yisroel that they are going
    to be renewed.
  16. One should wear his regular shoes and eat prior to saying
    Kiddush Levanah since one should only greet the Shechinah
    when happy,smells good, and is wearing nice clothing.
    10th of Av in aRegular Year
  17. The Beis Hamikdash caught fire on the 9th of Av, toward
    evening, and it burned through shkiyah of the 10th. Therefore,
    certain aspects of aveilus apply on the 10th
    . Although the Beis
    Hamikdash burned mostly on the 10th
    , Chazal instituted
    aveilus primarily on the 9th since that was when the tragedy
  18. TheMechaber writes that it is proper to abstain from meat
    andwine on the night and day ofthe 10th
  19. The Rama mentions that some people only practice aveilus until
    chatzos of the 10th
    . The minhag is to not wash, cut hair, or do
    laundry until chatzos.Other practices of theNine Days, e.g., not
    mending clothes, not wearing fresh clothes, and not listening to
    music, are also followed until chatzos ofthe 10th
    10th of Av on Friday
  20. This year [5780/2020], Tishah B’Av falls on Thursday and the
    10th falls on Erev Shabbos. The Mishnah Berurah writes that
    when Tishah B’Av falls on a Thursday and the 10th is Erev
    Shabbos, “all of this may be done in honor of Shabbos”. The
  21. Laundry. The Aruch Hashulchan says: laundry in a year like this
    may be done on the morning of the 10th but not the eve. But
    Most Poskim argue as Ezra decreed that laundry should be
    done on Thursday to leave Friday available for Shabbos
    preparations. Therefore, one may do his laundry after the
  22. Washing,haircuts.One may take a haircut and shower after the
  23. Meat, wine. One should refrain from eating meat and drinking
    wine until Friday chatzos, even when it falls on Erev Shabbos.
  24. Listeningtomusic. Onemaynotlistentomusicuntilchatzos,just
    like a regular year since listening to music does not contribute
    to the honor of Shabbos.

By Rabbi Fridmann * rabbifridmann@badatzmiami.com * 305.985.3461

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