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 Hilchos Kriyas Shema 79-80 (page 226)
 מסעיף ח עד תחילת סימן פא

Donning Tefillin Between Ahava Rabba and Shema
Caution About Potential Odors
Distance From Garbage

Donning tefillin between Ahava Rabba and Shema
If a person has a stomach ailment (whether chronic or acute) and cannot refrain from passing gas even for a few minutes, he should recite Shema without tefillin. If there is a bad smell, he must stop saying Shema until it passes or he relocates. If he can prevent himself from passing gas long enough to recite Shema, he should don his tefillin after Ahava Rabba, recite Shema and remove his tefillin. The prohibition of ba'al tishaktzu does not apply to holding back gas.
( סימן עט, סעיף ט וס"ק לב; סימן פ, סעיף א וס"ק ג-ד; ביאורים ומוספים דרשו, 1-2)
Caution about potential odors
Someone who is unsure if he is able to complete Shema or Shemone Esrei without passing gas may begin the tefilla while wearing tefillin. He should not forego connecting geula with tefilla or tefilla betzibur because of this. He is not required to regularly check himself to see whether he can complete the tefilla without an incident. If he needs to pass gas while davening, he must remove his tefillin first. If the situation arises during Shemone Esrei, there are additional halachos that must be observed.
( סימן פ, סעיף א וביה"ל ד"ה מוטב; ביאורים ומוספים דרשו, 8, 9, 10 ו־14)

Distance from garbage
It is forbidden to recite a davar sh'bekedusha in places where there is an offensive smell that does not readily dissipate. Included in this rule is a garbage dump. A difference between tzo'ah and a dump is that tzo'ah is forbidden even if it does not smell bad, but a dump is only forbidden if it has a foul odor (unless, of course, it contains revealed tzo'ah or substances that are similarly forbidden).
( סימן עט, סעיף ח, ס"ק כט, וביה"ל ד"ה אשפה; ולענין מכולות האשפה בזמננו - ראה ביאורים ומוספים דרשו, סימן כה, 13)

  • Distancing oneself from waste in order to recite devarim sh'bekedusha is generally required only in the case of human waste;  doing so is usually not mandated in the case of animal waste, with the exception of cat droppings and those of the n'miah
  • The rules of foul odors apply to any offensive smell that does not dissipate (e.g. rotting carcass, chicken coop, slaughterhouse or musty basement). Naturally unpleasant odors that come from causes other than rot or decay, such as those of itran or sweat, do not require distance.
  • Someone who lacks a sense of smell must keep his distance from foul odors the same way someone with an average sense of smell would.

  • The tzo'ah of an infant

  • The tzo'ah of a child who stopped eating grain

  • Inspecting an area before reciting a davar sh'bekedusha




PLEASE NOTE:  The information in this email is for learning purposes only. Please review the Mishna Berura and Biurim U'Musafim before making a halachic decision. Hebrew words are occasionally transliterated to enable a smoother reading of the text. Common Ashkenazi pronunciation is generally used in these cases.