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Using Pinkies For Havdala

Question:

Why is it that when people dip their fingers into the wine after havdalah, they use their pinkies? Why not their pointer?

Thank You

Answer:

While this seems to be the common custom, in fact some have the custom to use other fingers, see Siddur Beis Aharon pg. 3 who writes to use the ring finger. I have not seen an explanation for the pinky finger. This custom is meant as a healing method for what the Talmud tells us that one loses some of their eyesight due to walking in a haughty fashion. Perhaps we use the smallest finger to remind us of the trait of humility which we are trying to return to with this wine.

 

Sources:

See Berachos 43b, Prisha O:C 269:3, Pri Megadim, Eishel Avraham O:C 301:1

 

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