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Lighting Neiros Chanuka in Shul
There is a minhag to light ner Chanuka with a beracha in shul in order to publicize the nes. According to Rav Elyashiv, the custom is to light only in shuls that are used for two out of the three daily tefilos. Other poskim hold that it is adequate if the shul is used on a regular basis just for ma'ariv. Rav Chaim Kanievsky adds that the minhag applies to shuls used just for ma'ariv on Shabbos and motzai Shabbos. Likewise, a room used regularly for davening mincha and ma'ariv, such as in an office building, qualifies as a shul for this custom. Some contemporary poskim disagree with this. An open area (without walls or a roof) that is regularly used for davening (e.g. the Kosel) is considered a shul and a menorah should be lit there. The contemporary poskim discuss whether a small room or ezras nashim that is adjacent to a main shul must light independently if it is used for separate tefilos. According to some poskim, it is not necessary for such rooms to light at all and others hold that if they house a sefer Torah, they should light.
(שו"ע תרעא, ז; ביאורים ומוספים 'דרשו', 70)

Hilchos Kriyas Shema 63 (page 193)
מתחילת סימן סג עד סעיף ד

Reciting K'riyas Shema In Different Positions
Changes In Body Positions During Which K'riyas Shema May Not Be Recited
Reciting K'riyas Shema While Driving

Reciting K'riyas Shema in different positions
K'riyas Shema may be recited both while sitting and standing. If one is travelling, it may be recited while walking. The poskim dispute whether one may walk while reciting it in shul. It is forbidden to recite K'riyas Shema while completely lying upon one's back or stomach, even if leaning slightly to the side. If one lies entirely upon his side, the Mechaber permits him to recite K'riyas Shema, but according to the Rama, it is not permitted lechat'chila unless rising entails difficulty (e.g. dressing).
( סימן סג, סעיף א, וס"ק ב-ג, וביה"ל ד"ה מאחר; ביאורים ומוספים דרשו, 1 ו3)

Changes in body positions during which K'riyas Shema may not be recited
Bais Shamai requires that K'riyas Shema be recited in the morning while standing and at night while lying down, and Bais Hillel allows it to be recited in different positions. The Halacha follows Bais Hillel and it is forbidden to follow Bais Shamai's opinion. Therefore one should not change his body position from sitting to standing when reciting K'riyas Shema both in the morning and at night. At night one should not even change from standing to sitting, as it may appear that he is preparing to lie down. If one needs to stand to answer kaddish or kedusha it is permitted. One who is unable to sit still, and constantly alternates between sitting and standing, is also permitted to change positions.
( סעיף ב וס"ק ה ו-ז; ביאורים ומוספים דרשו, 6-7)

Reciting K'riyas Shema while driving
Although K'riyas Shema may be recited while walking, one is obligated to stop while reciting the first verse and Boruch Sheim in order to concentrate. Some say he should remain stationary until after the words, " al l'vavecha". If one is traveling in a car or airplane and is able to properly concentrate, he need not stop for these verses. However, if he is the driver and is unable to concentrate, he should stop.
( סעיף ג וס"ק ט-יא; ביאורים ומוספים דרשו, 11)


  • K'riyas Shema must be recited audibly. If surrounding noise prevents hearing his voice, it is sufficient. B'dieved, one is yotzei even if it was recited silently.
  • Hirhur (thinking words in one's head) is not considered like speaking. If one "recited" K'riyas Shema or blessings with hirhur, he must repeat it aloud.
  • Although K'riyas Shema can technically be recited in any language that one understands and is spoken locally, today we may only recite it in Lashon Hakodesh. When reciting K'riyas Shema in Lashon Hakodesh, one fulfils his obligation even if he does not understand (except for the first verse).

  • If the first verse of K'riyas Shema was recited without kavanah

  • Motioning during K'riyas Shema

  • Which sections of K'riyas Shema are M'doraisa



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.