We are continuing in siman 4, discussing the mitzvah of kavod shabbos. In this context, the Chayei Adam discusses baking challah for shabbos. He gives two reasons as to why one should bake challah for shabbos, and we began discussing the first reason yesterday. We know that there is a mitzvah of hafroshas challah, that a dough of a certain size has a portion removed and given to the kohen. Nowadays, we do not give it to a kohen, because the kohen must have a clear lineage back to Aharon Hakohen, which many cohanim do not have, and because it is only given to the kohen if the dough is in a state of taharah. If it is tamei, the kohen is not allowed to eat it and must burn it. Nowadays, since we are all tamei, the dough is always burnt, so we take off a smaller amount.
The mitzvah of hafroshas challah is specifically appropriate for Erev Shabbos. We know that to create a dough, one takes the ingredients, mixes them, shapes the dough, and then bakes it. We know that Hashem performed a similar process when creating Adam. Hashem took mud, a combination of dirt and water, shaped it into Adam, and put a neshama in it. Chazal describe Adam Harishon as the hafroshas challah of the world, in that he was designated from the rest of the world to be connected to Hashem on a high spiritual level.
We know that Man was created on the sixth day of creation, and that Adam also sinned on the sixth day of creation. The pesukim describe the role Chavah played in that process. Therefore, there is a kabbalistic idea that Chavah destroyed the challah of the world, because, though eating of the eitz hadaas, Adam Harishon severed his special relationship with Hashem in a way that brought death to him and to the world. Since Chavah was involved in that process, she creates an atonement and correction to her neshama by taking off and generating the kedusha of challah from the dough, in some way repairing her part in the sin.
The Chayei Adam brings a second reason. In truth, we learned of an additional reason yesterday (as a means of demonstrating kavod shabbos), so this will be the third reason. We will clarify this reason in the upcoming shiur, be’ezras Hashem.
One of the ways to show kavod Shabbos is to personally bake challah for Shabbos. However, if the store bought bread will taste better, the oneg Shabbos overrides the kavod demonstrated by baking oneself.
Another reason for the importance of baking challah for Shabbos is for a woman to atone for her part of the sin of eating from the eitz hadaas.