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Enjoying the Wedding Meal

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Mar 7, 2005
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Enjoying the Wedding Meal

R, Shlomo haKohen of Vilna (Resp. Binyan Shlomo, II, Inyanin Shonim, 30) suggests that the language of the Talmud, “whoever benefits from the meal of a groom and fails to make him happy”, was specifically chosen, as opposed to “whoever eats”. The Talmud’s discussion of “mitzvot lav l’henot nitnu”, that the mitzvot were not given for the purposes of benefit, is relevant here. Some debate exists as to the meaning of this phrase: does it imply that the mitzvot themselves are not considered to be a benefit, or that even mitzvot that include physical benefit are not considered as such due to their origin in mitzvah. If the latter interpretation is true, then one who fulfills a mitzvah while attending a wedding, such as bringing joy to the bride and groom, would not be considered “benefiting” from the meal. Since, however, the subject here is one who fails to perform this mitzvah, that terminology is pointedly used. [An original perspective toward this obligation, and its connection to Torah study, can be found in R. Herschel Schachter’s B’Ikvei HaTzon, 39:11.]

Gemara:

References: Berachot: 6b 

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Learning on the Marcos and Adina Katz YUTorah site is sponsored today by Ruth Peyser Kestenbaum and Miriam & Alan Goldberg to mark the tenth yahrtzeit of their father, Irwin Peyser, Harav Yisroel Chaim ben R' Dovid V' Fraidah Raizel Peyser