Torah Reading On Shabbat

Updated: Jan 5

The Daily Halacha Moment - Torah Reading 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:

When may a congregation read the Torah?

Who's obligated in the Torah reading every week?


Answer:

One may only read the Torah with the berachot if there are ten men, who are over the age of Bar Mitzvah, present.[1] Of the ten people present there must be at least six people who have not yet heard the keriat hatorah in order to be able to recite the berachot. [2]

The obligation of reading the Torah with a minyan, is an obligation on the community,[3] and it is considered a rabbinical obligation.[4]

Similarly, women are not obligated in listening to the keriat HaTorah. [5]


When the Torah is being read, one should focus on the Torah reading and follow along and one should not speak even about Torah topics. [6] However, one who has trouble hearing, and cannot hear the Torah reading, may learn other topics quietly while the Torah is being read.[7]


*Sources:*

[1]. Shulchan Aruch 143:1.

[2]. Halachah Berurah, vol. 7, p. 225.

[3]. See Yabia Omer 7:9; Chazon Ovadia, Shabbat, vol. 2, p. 221; Halachah Berurah, vol. 7, p. 95; Teshuvot VeHanhagot 1:148; Minchat Shlomo, vol. 2, 4:15; Tzitz Eliezer 18:5.

[4]. See in Rambam, Teffilah 12:1 who states that the institution of reading the Torah publicly was made by Moshe Rabbenu. This is also mentioned in the Yerushalmi, Megillah 4:1 and Talmud Bavli in Bava Kamma 82a. See also in Birkei Yosef 47:8; Aruch HaShulchan 282:1; Yechaveh Daat 1:85. This is also implied by the Shulchan Aruch 146:2 who states that only Parashat Zachor and Parah may be a Torah obligation, implying that other keriat hatorah are not.

[5]. Mishnah Berurah 282:12; Yechaveh Daat 4:23, in footnote on p. 130; Be’er Moshe, vol. 8, 85:2.

[6]. Shulchan Aruch 146:2. See also at length on this subject in Halachah Berurah, vol. 7, pp 263-269.

[7]. Torah Lishmah §42; Yalkut Yosef, Shabbat, book 1, vol. 4, p. 344.


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