DailyHalacha.com for Mobile Devices Now Available

Select Halacha by date:

Or by subject:

Or by keyword:
Search titles and keywords only
Search All    

Weekly Perasha Insights
Shabbat Morning Derasha on the Parasha
Register To Receive The Daily Halacha By Email / Unsubscribe
Daily Parasha Insights via Live Teleconference
Syrian Sephardic Wedding Guide
Download Special Tefilot
A Glossary Of Terms Frequently Referred To In The Daily Halachot
About The Sources Frequently Quoted In The Halachot
About Rabbi Eli Mansour
Purchase Passover Haggadah with In Depth Insights by Rabbi Eli Mansour and Rabbi David Sutton
About DailyHalacha.Com
Contact us
Useful Links
Refund/Privacy Policy
Back to Home Page

Click Here to Sponsor Daily Halacha
"Delivered to Over 6000 Registered Recipients Each Day"

(File size: 4.88 MB)
The Custom to Fast on Ereb Rosh Hashanah

The Shulhan Aruch (Orah Haim 581:2) notes the practice followed by many to fast on Ereb Rosh Hashanah. This custom is based on the Midrash’s comment that the day before Rosh Hashanah has the ability to atone for one-third of a person’s sins. This is a very significant day, and therefore those who are physically able to fast should make an effort to do so.

Those who follow this custom must formally accept the fast the previous day, in order for the fast to be considered a halachically acceptable fast day, such that "Anenu" may be recited in the Amida. The acceptance is made through the recitation of the brief "Ribon Ha’olamim" pronouncement which appears in the Siddurim. It is recited at the end of Amida during Minha, just before "Oseh Shalom." This should preferably be done during Minha Ketana (the later part of the Minha period, closer to sundown), though if it is done during Minha Gedola (in the early afternoon hours), it is acceptable. Even if one said this pronouncement outside the context of the Amida, the acceptance is nevertheless valid. Hacham Bension Abba Shaul (Israel, 1924-1998) ruled that even if one made the pronouncement after sundown, it is valid, as long as it was recited during the period of Ben Ha’shemashot (13.5 minutes after sudown).

The acceptance of the fast must be made verbally; it does not suffice to think the words in one’ s mind.

In the "Ribon Ha’olamim" text, one specifies that he takes it upon himself to fast "Me’alot Ha’shahar Ad Set Ha’kochavim" – from daybreak until dark. If one feels that observing a complete fast would be too difficult, he may commit to fasting until midday, or until some other point. If he commits to fasting until Set Ha’kochavim, he must fast until 20 minutes after sundown.

The text also includes the provision, "Ve’im Lo Ertzeh O Lo Uchal Ke’she’omar ‘Mizmor La’David’ Uchal Le’echol" – which stipulates that if one feels unable or unwilling to complete the fast, he will be allowed to eat after reciting "Mizmor Le’David" (the 23rd chapter of Tehillim). And thus if one decides during the day that he wishes to discontinue the fast, he should recite "Mizmor Le’David," which retroactively undoes his acceptance of a fast, such that he may now eat. Similarly, if a person forgot he had accepted a fast day, and began eating, he should recite "Mizmor Le’David" in order to retroactively uproot his acceptance, so that he will not be considered in violation of his commitment.

When reciting "Ribon Ha’olamim," one should not stipulate that he accepts the fast "Be’li Neder" (without making vow), because the entire purpose of this recitation is to make a formal vow to fast.

If one fasted on Ereb Rosh Hashanah three years in a row, it becomes an established Minhag (custom), and thus becomes forever binding. If he ever decides not to observe this fast, he would be required to perform Hatarat Nedarim – the annulment of a vow before a Bet Din. In order to avoid this situation, it is preferable when accepting the fast to have in mind that the acceptance is for this year only, and one has no intention of establishing a permanent custom.

Summary: There is a custom observed by many to fast on Ereb Rosh Hashanah, and those who are able to fast should make an effort to do so. One who chooses to fast must make a formal acceptance the previous day through the recitation of the "Ribon Ha’olamim" pronouncement printed in the Siddurim. This should preferably be done at the end of the Amida of Minha, before "Oseh Shalom." This pronouncement includes a stipulation that if one changes his mind during the fast, he may recite "Mizmor Le’David" (Tehillim 23) and then eat. When accepting the fast, one should have in mind that his acceptance is only for Ereb Rosh Hashanah this year, as otherwise, observing the fast three years in a row establishes a custom which is then forever binding (and would thus require Hatarat Nedarim when one wishes not to observe the fast).


Recent Daily Halachot...
May One Ask a Non-Jew to Turn Off a Light on Shabbat?
Asking a Non-Jew to Move a Mukseh Item on Shabbat
Shabbat – If a Non-Jew Mistakenly Turned Off a Light and Then Turned It Back on for a Jew
Asking a Non-Jew to Turn on the Heat or Air Conditioning on Shabbat
If a Non-Jew is Paid to Turn Lights on For a Jew on Shabbat
Giving Precedence to the Shabbat Day Meal Over the Friday Night Meal
Shabbat – The Prohibition Against Eating and Drinking Before Kiddush on Friday Night
Minors Eating Before Kiddush on Friday Night; Eating During Ben Ha’shemashot
Eating and Drinking Before Shaharit, and Before Kiddush on Shabbat
Reciting Kiddush Along With Somebody Else
A Woman’s Obligation of Kiddush
During Which Shabbat Meal Should One Eat His Favorite Food?
Must the Friday Night Meal Take Place Near the Shabbat Candles?
May One Wear a Surgical Mask on Shabbat in a Public Domain?
Is it Permissible to Use a Water Filter on Shabbat?
Page of 232
3479 Halachot found