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Hadlakas Neiros 7 – Where to Light 1; Introduction 1 (Klal 5 Siman 10) Erev Shabbos – S0134

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D'var Halacha
D'var Halacha
Hadlakas Neiros 7 - Where to Light 1; Introduction 1 (Klal 5 Siman 10) Erev Shabbos - S0134
We are beginning siman 10, and we will begin with some background.   When Chazal instituted the mitzvah of hadlakas neiros, they gave it an interesting hybrid status. On the one hand, it is considered a chovas bayis, that the home have neiros lit in it, and on the other hand, it is a chovas haguf, a responsibility on every individual to ensure there are neiros lit in the house. Bedikas chametz, for example, is purely a chovas bayis, to ensure the home does not have chametz in it. Neiros chanukah is also a chovas bayis, and without having a home one has no chiyuv to light.    When a chovas habayis exists, once one person fulfills that chiyuv, it discharges the chiyuv for all of the members of that bayis. The other members of the home do not even need to make the person lighting a shliach (appointed proxy), as the bayis has had its obligation discharged and there was no obligation on any specific individual. However, when it comes to a chovas haguf, each person’s obligation is fulfilled through the shliach who is lighting. Thus, in a case where a husband is home for Shabbos, and the wife lights in the place they will eat, she fulfills both the chovas habayis and chovas haguf. She fulfills the chovas haguf aspect as the shliach for the other members of the home.    However, we have mentioned (S0128) that the mitzvah is not just to light in the place they will eat, but to ensure there is light everywhere in the house. This mitzvah can be fulfilled by any member of the house. The bracha made by the wife will cover any additional lights put on in the house for the purpose of the mitzvah, similar to how one person makes the bracha of bedikas chametz and other family members will join in the search. When it comes to bedikas chametz, the other family members should be present at the time of the bracha. Regarding hadlakas neiros, the other family members do not need to be present when she makes the bracha.    If the husband goes to a private place outside of the home to learn on Friday night, after the seuda, the Biur Halacha brings from the Derech Chaim that bracha the wife says at home can arguably be used for that place as well. However, the Biur Halacha writes that most poskim disagree, and hold that the husband should specifically go to that place before Shabbos and light neiros there with a bracha. Certainly, if he is away from home, he will make his own bracha, but we will discuss that separately, be’ezras Hashem.   Summary
  • The chiyuv of hadlakas neiros is both a chovas habayis and chovas haguf. 
  • Once one family member makes a bracha in the home, it covers other lights put on in the home as well, even by other family members. 
  • Those family members do not have to be present when the bracha is made. 
The bracha only covers lights in the home. If there is another place a family member will be over Shabbos, they may need to make their own bracha  

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