Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
 
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Chapter 67:4-6
The Laws Governing Vows and Oaths

4. Should a person desire to establish a fixed period for the study of Torah or desire to perform a particular mitzvoh, and fear that he will alter fail to do so out of laziness; alternatively, should he fear that the evil inclination will tempt him to transgress a prohibition or prevent him from doing a mitzvoh, he is permitted to spur his determination by making a vow or oath. [Nedorim 8a] quotes Rav as saying:

What is the source which teaches that one may make an oath to fulfill a mitzvoh to spur his determination, even though he is bound by the oath made at Mount Sinai? [Psalms 119:106 states]: "I have sworn and I will fulfill [my oath] to observe your righteous commandments."

Even if one did not make such a statement in the form of an oath or vow, but merely made a promise, it is considered to be a vow and he is obligated to carry it out. Therefore, whenever a person makes a commitment to fulfill a mitzvoh, he should always say "Bli neder" (without obligating myself through a vow). It is proper for a person to train himself to add that phrase even when promising to do matters of a secular nature, so that, Heaven forbid, he will not err and transgress the prohibitions concerning vows.

5. A person who makes vows in order to rectify his character traits is considered meticulous and praiseworthy; e.g., a glutton who took an oath not to eat meat for a specific period, a drunkard who forbade for himself the drinking of wine or other alcoholic beverages, a vain person - preoccupied with his appearance - who vowed to be a Nazirite. Vows of this nature are aspects of the service of G-d, blessed be His name, and concerning such oaths, [Ovos 3:13] teaches: " Vows are a curb for abstinence." Nevertheless, a person should not become accustomed to making even such vows. Rather, he should attempt to control his desires without vows.

6. A vow does not take effect unless one's statements reflect the intentions of one's heart. However, if one erred when making a vow and intended to make a different statement from what he actually said - or thought about making a vow, but did not make a statement to that effect - it is not considered a vow.

BackVows and Oaths
Paragraphs 1-3
   Vows and Oaths
Paragraphs 7-9
Next
Table of Contents

Halacha-Yomi, Copyright (c) 2000 ProjectGenesis, Inc.

 






ARTICLES ON VAYEITZEI AND CHANUKAH:

View Complete List

Power To Choose
Rabbi Pinchas Avruch - 5765

Analyzing The Imagery of A Familiar Chanukah Poem
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5765

True Riches
Shlomo Katz - 5772

ArtScroll

Never Give Up!
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5757

8 - The Symbol of Eternity
Rabbi Label Lam - 5773

“Trading Places on the Ladder of Life”
Jon Erlbaum - 0

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Influences
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5763

Everyday Miracles
Rabbi Pinchas Avruch - 5764

Leah's Eyes
Shlomo Katz - 5758

> The 'Luz' Bone
Shlomo Katz - 5773

Maaser: Give Me a Tenth!
Rabbi Osher Chaim Levene - 5767

Hashem Must Play The Role of Our First Love, Not Our Second Fiddle
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5765

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

Lessons in Devotion
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5756

Respect of the Sanctuary: On Sacred Ground
Rabbi Osher Chaim Levene - 5766

Chanukah Oil: A Real No-Know
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5762

Of Fire and Money
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5757



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information