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Mitzvah or Aveirah

In the previous section, we discussed the Zohar’s warnings of the great danger in leaving impurity on one’s hands. Therefore, one should try to wash off the impurity as quickly as possible. For this reason some people prepare water near their bedside.

The Mishnah Berurah warns that while alacrity regarding this mitzvah is certainly praiseworthy, one should be careful that it does not lead to transgression. If a person does not have water of his own, he should not take his friend’s, unless he can replace it immediately. So, too, a person should not restrain himself from taking care of his bodily needs, because he is waiting for water in order to wash by his bed (Mishnah Berurah 1,2).

A certain young man had always been particular about washing netilas yadayim at his bed every morning. He was an early riser, and after he got married, his wife complained that the noise woke her up every morning. He was advised by rabbanim that if it really disturbed his wife so much, he should refrain from washing at his bedside (heard from Rav Moshe Sternbuch).


Text Copyright © 2012 by Rabbi Daniel Travis and Torah.org


 

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