Question:

Dear Rabbi,

Are there instances why a man may put his tefillin on over his right arm rather than his left? Curious if this has come up. Medical studies have a condition of dextrocardia where a heart is on the right side and not left. Would this be a change that the person who davens must put his tefillin on his right arm?

Assuming a deformity of the left arm, one might expect a tefillin would be put on the right arm. Otherwise, is there a full discussion of which arm a man may or not put one on?

Assuming that a not discussed is left handedness. It would as I best think mean a no placement of tefillin on the right arm as the heart is left. Or am I wrong that a person can choose any arm to place tefillin?

Curious thoughts tonight and I wish you all well. The good dinners are well in Ohio!

Shalom.

Answer:

A person that is left handed will put his tefillin on his right hand, not his left. The idea being that the torah tells us that tefillin are put on to the weaker hand, and if the right hand is the weaker one, we will don the tefillin on it. It doesn’t depend on the position of the persons heart, rather which hand is considered the weaker one. If the person only has part of the left hand it will depend on the circumstances.

Best Wishes

Sources:

O:CH 27-1, 6, M:B ibid 1,

Tags: Tefillin

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