Using a white chicken for Kaparos

Using a white chicken for Kaparos:[1]

One is to choose a white chicken, if there are white chickens in front of him readily available to be chosen from.[2] If however white chickens are not readily available in front of him, one is not to specifically search out for a chicken of white color.[3]


[1] Admur 605:2; Siddur Admur; Rama 605:1; Maharil; Arizal in Shaar Hakavanos; Shelah

[2] The reason: This is in light of the verse [Yeshaya 1:18] “If your sins are like red I will whiten them like snow”. [ibid] One is to avoid taking a black chicken, as black represents severity. [Shaar Hakolel 44]

[3] Admur ibid; M”A 605:3; Taz 605:2; Bach

The reason: This is because this appears similar to the acts of the Emorites [idol worshipers] who would search after white chickens to sacrifice them to idols, and it is forbidden for a Jew to resemble this act due to the verse “and you shall not go in their statutes”. [ibid]

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