Hi,

Your assistance on this matter would be much appreciated.

My family currently own and operate a chain of toy stores.

We have a business opportunity to acquire a chain of stores that sell xmas decorations (lights, trees, santas etc).

From my limited knowledge I understand that this may be problematic.

We would be grateful to hear your comments.

Kol Tov,

Gary

Answer:

There’s no problem in halachah of selling these items.

Although they are used as decorations on trees etc. the pagan origins of these customs have long been forgotten, and today they are merely part of a celebration.

Certainly, there is nothing wrong with the decorations per se, and because there is no knowledge (or even concern) that they will be worshiped as idolatry, it is permitted to sell them.

Best wishes.

Sources:

See Rema (Yoreh De’ah 141:1, based on the Mordechai, citing from Raavya) and Terumas Hadeshen (196) who write that even a cross that is made for jewelry does not constitute any prohibition of idolatry. Some are stringent concerning this matter (see Shach 6), requiring that we know the cross was not “worshiped.”

Of course, decorations were not worshiped, and it is permitted to sell them. Unlike the idea of selling animals to idolaters during their festivals, which we assume are for the purpose of sacrifices, with decorations there is no concrete concern for idolatry-related use, and therefore there is no problem.

Tags: decorations halachah selling

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