Re: Dying "al kiddush Hashem"

SorahYehu@aol.com
Fri, 28 Feb 1997 15:26:09 -0500 (EST)

adg1@juno.com wrote:
>There are many stories of people standing up to the Nazis even
>for small mitzvos. For example washing ones hands before eating. There
>are stories of people who died for these and other such mitzvos. Isn't
>there a rule that a person is only obligated to allow himself to be
>killed for the _BIG THREE_?*
>[* The three cardinal transgressions, concerning which one must forfeit his
>life rather than commit, are idol worship, forbidden sexual relationships,
>and murder.]

Regarding dying 'al kiddush Hashem,' my understanding is that the
restriction to the 'big three,' applies in a private situation, but when
the attempt of coercion to sin is before a tzibur (congregation, 10 Jews)
or for the purpose of eventual detatchment from Torah and Judaism, then one
is obligated to be killed for even changing 'the order of a shoelace' [i.e.
to wear black instead of red, or red instead of black]. Someone please
confirm or elaborate.

Yehudis Fishman