- Question: [Sunday, 21st Shevat, 5782]
I woke up at about 3 o’clock in the morning and recited all the morning blessings. I then realized that it was still before Alos, and I should not have said the blessing of Hanosein Lasechvi Bina being that I did not hear a rooster crow. My question is what I should do now? Was it a blessing in vain and I need to repeat it again after Alos, or at least Bedieved I fulfilled my obligation?
It is questionable whether you fulfilled your obligation of this blessing and therefore you should try to fulfill your obligation with another person after Alos. This can be fulfilled in one of two ways: 1) By hearing it from an individual in front of a minyan, such as to go to a Shul in which the custom is for the Chazan to begin with Birchas Hashachar. [However, you cannot fulfill your obligation from an individual if there is no Minyan.] 2) Teaching the blessing of Hanosein Lasechvi Bina to a young child, having him repeat after you word after word, and having in mind to fulfill your obligation in case that you were not Yotzei before Alos, and as well to have in mind to educate the child so that he learn the blessing.
Explanation: It is disputed amongst Poskim as to whether one must receive the benefit of the morning blessings, in order to be allowed to say them in the morning, such as if one must hear the rooster crow in order to say the blessing of Hanosein Lasechvi Bina. Practically, we rule that the blessings may be said even if one did not receive the benefit due to the fact the people of the world receive these benefits daily. Nonetheless, in the event one did not receive the benefit, then it may only be said when the general populace of the world receives the benefit which is after Alos. Accordingly, Admur and other Poskim rule that one may not recite the blessing of Hanosein Lasechvi Bina prior to Alos unless one heard the rooster crow [and some are stringent even if one heard the rooster crow]. Thus, those who wake up before Alos and say the morning blessings must beware to receive all the pleasures to which the blessings correspond to, and are hence to skip the blessing of Hanosein Lasechvi Bina unless they heard a rooster crow. [However, there are opinions who rule one may recite all the morning blessings prior to Alos, including Hanosein Lasechvi Bina, even if he did not receive their corresponding benefit and did not hear the rooster crow.] Now, regarding the law Bedieved if one already went ahead and said the blessing Hanosein Lasechvi Bina prior to Alos despite not hearing a rooster crow, seemingly, according to Admur one does not fulfill his obligation. Nonetheless, being that this is not clearly written, and being there are opinions who argue and rule that Bedieved one does fulfill his obligation and that even Lechatchila it may be done, therefore one is not to repeat the blessing and is rather to hear it from a Shliach Tzibur by a minyan or educate a child to recite it.
Sources: See regarding not reciting the blessing of Hanosein Lasechvi Bina prior to Alos Hashachar unless one heard the rooster crow: Admur 47:9; Siddur Admur regarding one who did not sleep at night [The Ketzos Hashulchan 5 footnote 14 applies this law likewise to one who slept at night. See also Piskei Hassidur 46 that he brings this down]; Ketzos Hashulchan 5 footnote 14; Piskei Hassidur 46; Sefer Haminhagim p. 5 [English]; Luach Kolel Chabad; Shevach Hamoadim 2:2; According to the Michaber 47:13 one may never say the blessing of Hanosein Lasechvi Bina prior to Alos even if he heard the rooster crow. So is also implied from M”A 47:13 that one is initially to be stringent not to say the blessing before Alos at any time; See Shaareiy Teshuvah 47:13; M”B 47:31; Biur Halacha 47 “Mivareich”; Kaf Hachaim 46:49; 47:30; Glosses of Rav Raskin on Siddur p. 16; Other opinions who rule that may say blessing before Alos even if did not hear rooster: See M”A 47:13 in name of Zohar; Machazik Bracha 47:6; Kesher Gudal 5:11; Shalmei Tzibur 47; Shaareiy Teshuvah 47:13; M”B 47:31 and Biur Haacha ibid that so is implied from Gr”a in Maaseh Rav and Peri Megadim 46 A”A 14; Kaf Hachaim 47:30; Kaf Hachaim 46:49 in name of Rashash in Nehar Shalom and Arizal; brought also in Shalmei Tzibur 46 and Zechor Leavraham 1:300; See Koveitz Ohalei Torah 777-780 where Rav Shalom Ber Levin writes a different interpretation in the Siddur [which in my opinion is impossible to enter into the wording] and concludes that practically Chassidim were not particular to recite the morning blessings after Alos. He explains in the Siddur that if one slept at night he may even say the blessing of Hanosein Lasechviy prior to Alos, even if one did not hear the rooster crow. Harav Asher Lemel Hakohen, Chabad Rav of Beitar, agrees with his opinion. Harav Yosef Simcha Ginzberg [through a personal correspondence] defended the opinion of the Ketzos Hashulchan in Admur, stating that there is no other way to interpret it. See regarding bedieved if said blessing of Hanosein Lasechvi before Alos: Shaareiy Teshuvah 47:13; M”B 47:31 [Yotzei] See regarding the dispute if one must receive the benefit of the morning blessings, and that we are lenient: Admur 46:7; Siddur; Ketzos Hashulchan 5:6; Michaber 46:8; Peri Chadash 46:8; Birkeiy Yosef 46:12; Rav Poalim 2:8; Kaf Hachaim 46:49; Piskeiy Teshuvos 46:14; See regarding not to say any blessing before Alos if did not receive benefit: Siddur Admur; Admur 47:7; 4:13; Siddur; Ketzos Hashulchan 5:6; Tehila Ledavid 4:10; Rama 47:13; Piskeiy Teshuvos 46:15; The Mekubalim rule that one is to recite all the morning blessings from after midnight, even if one did not sleep at night and did not receive their corresponding blessings. [Kaf Hachaim 46:49 in name of Rashash in Nehar Shalom and Arizal; brought also in Shalmei Tzibur 46 and Zechor Leavraham 1:300] See regarding needing a minyan present by the morning blessings in order to be Yotzei: Admur 59:4; Levush 6:4 and 59:4; M”A 6:10 and 59:8; Chayeh Adam 5; M”B 59:23; Ketzos Hashulchan 5 footnote 9; P”M 6 A”A 10; See regarding educating children in blessings: Admur 167:23; 215:2; Michaber 167:19; 215:2-3; Brachos 53b; Rosh Hashanah 29a; Igros Kodesh 3:138