Instruments On Shabbat

The Daily Halacha Moment - Instruments On Shabbat 🎸 🎶


״כל השונה הלכות בכל יום - מובטח לו שהוא בן העולם הבא״ (נידה עג ע״א, מגילה כח:)


“Anyone who studies Halachot every day is guaranteed that he is destined for the world-to-come” (Megilla 28b, Niddah 73a)


Question:

May one play instruments on Shabbat?

May one use a door knocker on Shabbat?


Answer:

It is rabbinically forbidden to play an instrument on Shabbat or Yom Tov, since one may come to fix it if it breaks. However, singing is permitted, and it is even a mitzvah to sing songs in honor of Shabbat. [1] Furthermore, banging on a table in a rhythmic manner is not permitted. [2] However, one may knock on a door in a manner that is not intended to have a specific rhythm. [3] Similarly, one may use a metal door knocker, since such an item is not considered an instrument. Some Ashkenazim are stringent regarding door knockers one should follow one's custom. [4] One may open a door that has a bell or chimes on it that make noise when the door is opened. [5]


Sources:

[1]. Chazon Ovadia, Shabbat, vol. 5, p. 235. See also in Yalkut Yosef, Shabbat, vol. 5, p. 69 that one may compose a new song on Shabbat, provided that one does not write anything down.

[2]. Shulchan Aruch 339:3.

[3]. Shulchan Aruch 338:1; Chazon Ovadia, Shabbat, vol. 5, p. 235.

[4]. Chazon Ovadia, Shabbat, vol. 5, p. 255; Halichot Olam, vol. 4, p. 268 explains that even though the Rama 338:1 is stringent, the opinion of the Shulchan Aruch is to be lenient and did not differentiate between methods of knocking on a door.

[5]. See Mishnah Berurah 338:6 who states that preferably one should remove the bells before Shabbat. See Mekor Chaim (of the Chavot Yair) 338:1; Chazon Ovadia, Shabbat, vol. 5, p. 255 in the name of Shraga HaMeir 2:62.

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