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Food from shiva house

Question:

My neighbor gave me the food from his shiva house that was leftover
I was holding it for someone else needy.
The needy person turns out doesn’t need it and I am now ” stuck ” with it ( fruit , milk , etc)
Can I eat the food or should I throw it out ?

Answer:

 

This minhag that the Ashkenazim have not to take things out of the shiva house is only until after the shiva is finished. (The reason is because of a certain tumah that there is in the “bais ha’ovel” but after the shiva is over it isn’t considered a bais haovel anymore, and things may be taken out). Therefore you may eat the food, and use it like any other food.

Sources:

Hagoas Rabbi Akiva Eiger Y:D 376-4, Divrei Sofrim ibig 34, See also Buir hlacha ibid D:H V’nohago.

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3 Comments

  1. Doesn’t the tumah in the house depend on the niftar dying in the house? There are any number of minhagim that are really assuming that death took place at home. If no one died in the house, why is there a problem with the food?

    1. Although there are those that suggest such an idea, the reason for the minhag is because of a tumah on the house during the shiva itself, which is not there after the shiva. If it would be because the niftar died there, then food that wasn’t in the house at that time of death would not be part of the minhag. But that is not the case. Also see Gesher Hachayim 20-5 (12) who brings the minhag as brought in R’ A. Eiger and he doesn’t differentiate between if the niftar died there. (As a side point very often the aveilim are sitting in numerous houses, and very often the niftar didn’t die at home, but they don’t differentiate.) Also see The Laws of Aveilus pg. 69.

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