Parshas Devarim
Shabbos Chazon
August 9-10, 2019
9 Av 5779
Shalom & hello everyone! I hope you are doing well.

I look forward to greeting you personally this Shabbos Chazon/erev Tisha B'av.

Please join me for uplifting Shabbos ravening and a truly meaningful Tisha B'av program starting Saturday night with Eichah and kenos.

Ohav Sholom is offering diverse lectures and shiurium plus uplifting videos shown throughout the day. Please see flyer below for more information.

Finally, join me for a light collation to break the fast Sunday night in shul after maariv.

Have a wonderful shabbos and an easy Taanis.

See you in shul,

Rabbi Aaron D. Mehlman 
Erev shabbos kodesh parshas Devarim
Shabbos Chazon / erev Tisha B'av
Shabbos TimeTable
Erev Shabbos Kodesh - Parshas Devarim
Friday, August 9, 2019
Early Mincha/Kabbalos Shabbos 6:30 PM
Early Candle Lighting 6:35 PM
Candle lighting 7:44 PM

Shabbos Kodesh - Parshas Devarim
Saturday, August 10, 2019
Shacharis 9:00 AM
Mincha 6:35 PM
Fast Begins 8:00 PM
Shabbos ends 8:46 PM
Maariv / Eichah 8:46 PM
Tisha B'av Halachic Primer 5779

This shabbos is called " Shabbos Chazon,"  Shabbos of Vision, after the opening words of the day's reading from the Navi in the haftorah.
We do not change bedding with fresh sheets, even in honor of shabbos.
One is permitted to cut finger/toe nails in honor of shabbos.

Bathing one's entire body is prohibited even in cold water for  pleasure  purposes, even in honor of shabbos. One who regularly goes to mikveh l’kavod shabbos is permitted to do so.
If one is perspired or very uncomfortable, washing is permitted. Also, if one needs to remove dirt, sweat, etc., warm water and soap/shampoo is allowed.

A woman going to mikveh is permitted to bathe in hot water, as usual.
If one bathes for shabbos (see above) there is no need to wait until after midday.
One is permitted to wash floors etc. in honor of shabbos.
One is permitted to shine and polish shoes in honor of shabbos.
In honor of shabbos we use regular (white) shabbos tablecloths.
We wear our regular shabbos clothing. If one has to choose between a new shirt and a laundered one, opt for the latter.
This week's  haftorah  is read to the tune of  Eicha,  Lamentations.
We sing traditional songs/zemiros at the shabbos meals on shabbos chazon.
Pleasure walks and the like on this shabbos chazon are discouraged. However, if necessary for health reasons, one is permitted to do so.
Wine or grape juice is used for kiddush and bentching on shabbos chazon. There is no need to administer these to a minor.

Dvarim Sh’btzinah , discreet matters prohibited to an Avel as pertaining to mourning, are observed throughout the shabbos. Therefore, intimacy is forbidden with the exception of  leil mikveh  or  yotzeh l’derech .

Pleasure walks and the like on this shabbos chazon (also erev tisha b'av  and  the 9th of Av) are discouraged. However, if necessary for health reasons, one is permitted to do so.

Wine or grape juice is used for kiddush and bentching on shabbos chazon. There is no need to administer these to a minor.

One may study Torah throughout the afternoon of shabbos. Public shiurim are not recommended.


The fast begins in NYC at  8:00 pm  and all prohibitions are in force (see below) with the exception of changing out of leather shoes (or changing into weekday clothing) and sitting on the floor. Since we cannot display overt mourning on shabbos, they are observed at nightfall only:  8:46 pm , the absolute conclusion of shabbos.

It is forbidden to verbalize that one is eating on shabbos to fortify oneself for the fast.

However, one may  think  to prepare oneself for after the shabbos. Similarly, one should not prepare  kinos  or change clothing or shoes before shabbos is over.

According to Rav Eliyahsiv, zt”l, one may discreetly change shoes (only) after sunset.


We do NOT sit on low stools or the floor until  8:46 pm.

The  traditional  seudah hamafsekes  before the fast is NOT eaten this year. A regular third meal (seudah shlishis) is eaten with extra care taken to finish  before  sunset ( 8:00 pm ).

Mayim achronim  should be washed before sunset.

This seudah shlishis/hamafsekes is eaten in solemnity and devoid of joy. It is eaten with family members and guests, if this is one's custom.

Meat, wine and the like are absolutely permissible.


Before  maariv, the chazzan slips off his leather shoes,  before   his recital of  borchu .

The congregation removes their leather shoes  after  their response to  borchu . Alternately, one can wait until 9:10pm (recite  baruch hamavdil ), change shoes and clothes and return to shul for maariv/eicha/kinos.

Before slipping off the shoes, one should recite the words , “Baruch hamavdil bein kodesh l'chol ,” without mentioning G-d's name.

Women who do not plan to return to shul should recite this at home.

Women who will not attend shul should recite the blessing  (boreh m’orei ha’esh)  over fire at home.

The balance of havdalah will be recited Sunday night. 

According to Rabbi Shlomo Zalman Auerbach, zt”l, women  should  recite the Saturday night maariv service (this year) and insert the  atah chonantanu  prayer, as this is a preferred form of havdalah.

If one removed leather shoes in shul for maariv, they may be   worn to return home and then switched out for acceptable tisha b’av footwear.

Although havdalah is recited Sunday evening, the bracha over fire is recited  after  maariv on motzei shabbos (in shul)  before  the reading of eicha. The fire is kept lit for the reading of eicha.

If one did not hear the blessing over fire, one must recite this blessing at home (motzei shabbos only.)

We daven maariv in a spirit of sadness and eichah is read in a tuneful and mournful voice.
One need not read along with the reader.

If one cannot attend a shul, eichah and kinnos should be read and recited, even in private.


The five "afflictions" on Tisha B'av are: eating and drinking, bathing and washing, applying of oils and lotions, leather footwear and intimacy.

Footwear that has decorative strips of leather may be worn. This is common on sneakers. 

Antiperspirant may be used on Tisha B'av. 

Women refrain from applying makeup and cosmetics on Tisha B'av. 

One is forbidden to wash or bathe on tisha b'av, even in cold water.

We wash  n’tilas yadayim  upon rising, until our knuckles.  After  using the restroom, the blessing  al n’tilas yadayim  is recited.

One may wash until the knuckles for mincha and maariv service.

Even pregnant and nursing women fast on Tisha B'av.

If this isn't feasible (for example, morning sickness or the infant is fed exclusively from the mother) one should fast until morning or even midday. Of course, exceptions are made under  qualified  rabbinic guidance. 

We do not don talis and tefillin for shachris. They are worn at mincha service.

One should sit on low chairs until midday, which is at  1:35 pm .

"Work" is prohibited on Tisha B'av until  1:35 pm . Simple activities that do not distract from a mindset of mourning - such as turning on a light switch, are permitted even before midday. 

One traveling in a car before midday is permitted to sit in a regular (car) seat.

One may visit the sick on Tisha B'av.

It is recommended to visit a Jewish cemetery after the morning service has concluded. If a Jewish cemetery is not available, a non Jewish cemetery is also advised.

We do not study Torah on Tisha B'av unless the topic 'relates to the day’ and will remind us of the churban. Mussar seforim are permitted.

On Tisha B'av, we do not greet our neighbor with the words,  "Sholom aleichem."
One may wish another,  "Refuah shleimah,"  on tisha b'av.


Havdalah is recited Sunday night after maariv.

Havdalah consists of  borei pri hagefen  and  hamavdil bein kodesh l'chol.

No blessings over  besamim  or fire are recited.

Havdalah is made over wine or grape juice and the  mavdil  officiant drinks. There is  no need to give this to a minor.    The fast is over at  8:45 pm .

Since tisha b'av is a  nidcha , deflected fast day, at the conclusion of the taanis (9:09pm) on Sunday night, the following pleasurable activities are  PERMITTED :

Bathing  (even in hot water)
Listening to music
Laundering of clothing and wearing clean, freshly laundered garments

Due to the severity of the day, the following are  NOT PERMITTED  until  MONDAY MORNING :

Consumption of meat 
Drinking wine or grape juice

NOTE : The laws of Tisha B'av are vast and detailed. If you have tisha b'av related questions or have difficulty fasting, feel free to call me  anytime  at 917-405-7222.
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