Visiting the Temple area: Keria; Temple Mount; Western Wall; Aliya Liregel

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Visiting the Temple area:

Performing Keriah:[1]

Seeing destroyed city of Judea:[2] One who sees, from close proximity[3], a city in Judea which is destroyed [or is inhabited by Jews but is under gentile sovereignty[4]], is required to say “Ir Kadshecha Hayu Midbar” and perform Keriah. [Regarding Chevron, the old age custom was not to perform Keriah upon seeing it.[5] Practically, the custom today is to be lenient regarding performing Keriah upon seeing the cities of Judea.[6] Nonetheless, the above verse is to be recited.[7]]

Seeing Jerusalem: One who sees [the old city of[8]] Jerusalem from close proximity[9] in a destructive state, is to say “Tziyon Haysa Midbar Shemama” and perform Keriah.[10] This applies from the area of Mount Scopus [Har Hatzofim] and onwards.[11]

Seeing the Temple mount:[12] One who sees the Temple Mount [the area of the Dome of the Rock[13]] is to say “Beis Kadsheinu Vesifarteinu Asher Haleluch Bah Avoseinu Haysa Lesreifas Eish Vechaol Machaneinu Haysa Lecharva”. One is then to perform Keriah.

How many times is Keriah done when going towards the Temple Mount?[14] Upon reaching Mount Scopus [Har Hatzofim] one is to perform Keriah for the first time, and upon reaching sight of the Temple Mount he is to perform Keriah a second time. [It is to be done a six centimeters distance from the first tear.[15]]

How is the Keriah to be done?[16] All the above tears must be done while standing, and using one’s hands [although the custom is to use a knife[17]]. One is to tear all of his clothing covering his chest until he reveals his heart.[18] [Nonetheless, the custom is to only tear one’s upper shirt and not the Tzitzis or undershirt.[19]] One is to tear a full Tefach of the clothing.[20] These tears may never be fully re-sewn.[21]

How often?[22] The tearing is obligated to be done every thirty days, upon seeing the above areas. This means as follows: Once one has performed Keriah upon seeing one of the above areas, he is not obligated to do Keriah within the next thirty days even if he comes back to see it a second time. After thirty days, he is once again obligated to perform Keriah upon seeing the area. 



One who sees the destroyed cities of Judea, Jerusalem, or the Temple Mount is required to recite the designated verse and perform Keri to his shirt. One is to tear it one Tefach and is never to properly resew it. [Practically, the custom today is to be lenient regarding doing Keriah upon seeing the cities of Judea, although the verses are nevertheless to be recited.]

Q&A on the days

Are there days in which Keriah is not required to be performed?

From the letter of the law, the only days of exception in which one is not to perform Keriah, is Shabbos and Yom Tov. Nevertheless, the custom is not to do Keriah on the following days:[23]

1.       Erev Shabbos past midday

2.       Erev Yom Tov past midday

3.       Chol Hamoed[24]

4.       Purim[25]

5.       Chanukah

Ø  Days that Tachanun is omitted: On Rosh Chodesh and other days that Tachanun is omitted, Keriah is nevertheless obligated to be performed.[26] Nevertheless, some are lenient regarding all days that Tachanun is omitted.[27]

Q&A on the areas

Must one do Keriah today upon seeing the old city of Jerusalem?

Some Poskim[28] rule there is no longer an obligation today to perform Keriah upon seeing the old city of Jerusalem, as Jerusalem has been rebuilt. However, other Poskim[29] rule that even today one is required to perform Keriah upon seeing the old city of Jerusalem. Practically, the Rebbe’s position was that the obligations remain in place even today, and he vehemently opposed such a suggestion to the contrary.[30] According to all, it remains an obligation to do Keriah upon seeing the Temple Mount, and Western Wall, as explained next.


Must one perform Keriah upon seeing the Kosel Hamaravi/Western Wall?

The Western Wall is a wall of the Har Habayis and not a wall of the Mikdash. Accordingly, some Poskim[31] rule one who sees it, but does not see the Temple Mount area [Dome of the Rock], is not required to perform Keriah a second time on its behalf. [However, he is required to perform Keriah a first-time due to seeing the old city of Jerusalem.] Other Poskim[32] however rule to the contrary, that although today one is not required to tear his shirt upon seeing the old city of Jerusalem, he nevertheless is required to tear it upon seeing the Western Wall. Some[33] however join the leniencies of these two opinions and do not require Keriah upon seeing the Western Wall, so long as one makes sure not to look at the Temple Mount.


Q&A on the people

Must Jerusalem residents perform Keriah upon seeing the Temple Mount?

From the letter of the law, if thirty days have passed since the last time they saw the Temple Mount, they are required to perform Keriah.[34] Nonetheless, the custom is not to be careful in this matter.[35]


Must a woman perform Keriah upon seeing the above areas?



Must children perform Keriah upon seeing the above areas?[36]


Q&A on circumventing the Halacha

May one sell his clothing to another to avoid the obligation to perform Keriah?[37]

Some are accustomed to sell their shirt to another in order to circumvent the obligation of Keriah.[38] Nevertheless, in truth, this sale is most likely ineffective, and one must thus perform Keriah regardless.


Is there any justification for those who do not perform Keriah today upon visiting the Kosel?

Many people today are not accustomed to perform Keriah to their shirts upon visiting the old city and Western Wall, and seeing the Makom Hamikdash. While the Poskim do not give any defense of this custom, it apparently has been around for quite some time.[39] Some[40] suggest that perhaps the entire obligation is a result of one’s utter sadness of seeing the destruction, and today that we have become so immune to the Churban and Galus, and would feel more pain for ruining his shirt than for the Churban, the obligation thus no longer applies. Others[41] say that those who live in Eretz Yisrael, may rely on this logic, while those who come from the Diaspora, are to perform Keriah. Others say that in truth the Western Wall is not part of the area called Makom Hamikdash, and Yerushalayim today is rebuilt, and hence does not require Keriah. It appears that the Rebbe’s position on this matter is that one is to perform Keriah even today, as written in the Poskim.[42] Practically, it is best for every person to bring with himself an old shirt which he does not mind tearing, and perform the Mitzvah as required in Shulchan Aruch. If this is not possible, one should at the very least sell his shirt to another person with a full Kinyan. Irrelevant of one’s custom, the above-mentioned verses are to be recited.[43]

Misc Q&A

Must one walk around with the torn garment?[44]

No. Once the shirt is torn, it may be removed and one can then change to a regular shirt.


Saying Baruch Dayan Haemes:

Some Poskim[45] rule one is to recite the blessing of Baruch Dayan Haemes without Hashem’s name upon seeing the above areas and performing the Keriah.



The Keriah of the Rebbe Rayatz:[46]

When the Rebbe Rayatz visited Yerushalyim he performed Keriah, and recited the blessing of Baruch Dayan Haemes without Hashem’s name.


May one visit the Temple Mount?[47]

The Temple area contains Kedusha even today in its state of destruction. Accordingly, just as in Temple times there existed restricted areas of entry, so too in today’s times, there are certain areas in which it is forbidden for a Jew to enter. Some of these areas are prohibited under the penalty of Kareis as explained next.

The areas of restriction: The Temple Mount contains a number of areas with Halachic restrictions of access.[48] For example, the Halachically defined area of the Temple Mount in general [called the Har Habayis] is permitted in entrance for only one who is pure from the impurity of a Nidda, Zav/Zava [Baal Keri[49]] and Yoledes.[50] The area however remains permitted for entrance to a Tamei Meis.[51] A Nidda, Zav/Zava, [Baal Keri] or Yoledes who enters into the Har Habayis, is liable for lashes.[52] The area of the Cheil and Ezras Nashim is only permitted in access for one who is pure of Tamei Meis.[53] A Tamei Meis who enters into the area of the Mikdash that is completely holy, such as the Ezras Yisrael and inwards, is liable for Kareis.[54] The area of the Kodesh may only be entered by Kohanim during the time of Avoda.[55] A Kohen who enters into the Kodesh not during times of Avoda, is liable for lashes.[56] The area of the Kodesh Hakedoshim may only be entered by the Kohen Gadol, and only on Yom Kippur.[57] One who is not a Kohen Gadol, or even a Kohen Gadol who enters not on Yom Kippur, is liable for death in the hands of Heaven.[58]  

The location of the above areas:[59] It is difficult to measure the location of the above areas of restriction due to several reasons. First off, the original Har Habayis was 500 Ama by 500 Ama[60], while the current Har Habayis area is much larger than this.[61] Accordingly, there exists areas by today’s Temple Mount that do not contain the Kedusha of Har Habayis at all, and permitted in entry by every Jew. The problem is however that it is most difficult to ascertain the precise areas that are not included in the Halachic Har Habayis. Where do we measure the 500 x 500 Ama from, and what is the exact measurement of an Ama in this regard? Both of these matters are under dispute. The Poskim[62] dispute over where the location of the Kodesh Hakedoshim is, and therefore dispute as to where the practical areas of restriction are located. The Poskim[63] also dispute as to the exact measurement of an Ama. Accordingly, what may be a restricted area to one opinion, is not a restricted area to another opinion, and what is an unrestricted area according to one opinion may be a restricted area for another opinion. Nonetheless, the mainstream approach amongst Poskim[64] is that the center of the Kodesh Hakedoshim is by the rock found under the “Dome of the Rock” and from there one measures all the Amos of the Kodesh Hakedoshim, Kodesh/Heichal [100 x 100 Amos], Azara [From North to South is 135 Amos and from East to West is 187 Amos[65]], Ezras Nashim [135 x 135 Amos[66]], Cheil [10 Amos from the walls of the Beis Hamikdash, from East to West is 342 Amos, from North to South is 155 Amos, and is a total of 11 Amos from the Dome of the Rock[67]], and Har Habayis [500 x 500 Amos]. While we know the exact measurements of Amos for each area, it is unclear as to how many centimeters each Ama contains [as stated above] and it is also unclear from where on the rock the measurements should begin.  

The practical ruling of Gedolei Yisrael:[68] It is evident from the Poskim that in previous generations Jews customarily would visit the Temple Mount in order to see the Makom Hamikdash.[69] Some Poskim[70] of earlier generations defended this practice, going as far as saying that even entering a questionable area at times may be permitted, due to their great passion to see the Holy of Holies. Nonetheless, in both the previous and current generation, the Poskim and Gedolei Yisrael[71] from all spectrums of Jewry, have severely warned the public not to enter the Temple Mount, including even the permitted unrestricted areas, lest he enter a restricted area and be liable for the severe penalty of Kareis. Meaning, that even if we can determine without shadow of a doubt the exact areas of restriction, or of questionable restriction, and the areas that are permitted in entry according to all, nevertheless, one should not enter even these areas, as doing so would cause others who are unaware or not G-d fearing to enter the prohibited areas.[72] 

Security forces entering the Temple mount:[73] It is permitted for security forces to enter the Temple Mount area, and even the Kodesh Hakedoshim, in order to prevent a life-threatening situation, such as to fight Arab terror which commonly occurs on the Temple Mount. Nonetheless, being that in many cases, the police send units up even during times that are free of danger, therefore a G-d fearing Jew is not to accept such a position. Commonly, due to this reason, there is a high percentage of non-Jewish soldiers who patrol the area, in order to avoid religious conflict.    



Gedolei Yisrael from all spectrums of Jewry prohibit visitation to the Temple Mount, including to those areas which have been determined to not be part of the Halachic Har Habayis  and are not restricted in entry.


The Rebbe’s approach:[74]

In a letter to Rabbi Meir Yehuda Geitz, the chief Rabbi of the Kosel, the Rebbe stated as follows:

It is obvious that in the current state of affairs in which the public is going from right to left [further away from Torah] that I am most vehemently against even the mere public discussion of the question of allowance to enter Har Habayis. [The reason for my absolute opposition is] because the moment that this discussion would begin, a number of people will visit the area, including the areas which are certainly prohibited, G-d save us, and that number will continue to grow, G-d have mercy on us. All the warnings about this issue (assuming they would be issued) will simply ignite the inclination of those people and increase the amount of people who go. Whoever brings up or participates in the discussion of this issue, and certainly one who actually goes up to Har Habayis, in addition to the sacrilege of the elders of Jerusalem, and the city of Jerusalem, it is sacrilege of the Har Habayis itself. Upashut!


May one fly over the Har Habayis area?[75]

No. This prohibition applies likewise to a drone.[76]



Visiting the Kosel/Western Wall:

It is customary of Jews throughout the generations to visit the Western wall found in the old city of Jerusalem, which is formally known as the Kosel. The Midrash states that the Western Wall will never be destroyed.[77] The Shechina never departed from the Western Wall even after the destruction and will remain there forever.[78]

What is the Western Wall?[79] The Western Wall is a wall of the Temple Mount, Har Habayis and not of the Heichal, Azara, or Beis Hamikdash itself.[80] It is therefore permitted to visit the Western Wall even though we remain in a state of impurity, and so is the custom of all Jewry for many generations. [Some Poskim[81] however are stringent in this matter, and would not visit the Western Wall.]


May one touch the stones of the Western Wall and enter notes into it?

Some Poskim[82] rule one is to abstain from touching the stones of the Kosel, or entering notes into it.[83] The majority of Poskim[84] however rule it is permitted to do so, and so is the widespread custom.[85] Even according to the first opinion, if one immersed in a Mikveh prior to visiting, it is permitted to enter the fingers into the stones.[86]



Aliya Laregel-Visiting the Temple on a festival:

The Mitzvah in Temple times:[87] In Temple times, it was a Biblical command for every man to visit the Temple on Yom Tov of the Shalosh Regalim, and bring with them a Karban Olah. This Mitzvah was formally known as the Mitzvah of Reiyah, and its Karban was known as the Karban Reiyah.

The law during exile: The bringing of the Karban is an integral part of the Mitzvah of visitation, of which without it the Mitzvah cannot be fulfilled.[88] Accordingly, during times of exile that we cannot bring a Karban, the Mitzvah is no longer applicable. Some Poskim[89] however rule the Mitzvah is not dependent on the Karban, and hence the Biblical Mitzvah is simply to visit Hashem by the Temple mount area. Nonetheless, since the Mitzvah of visitation is to enter the area of the Azarah[90], which we cannot enter today due to ritual impurity, therefore it is not possible to fulfill the Mitzvah, even according in their opinion.[91] Some Poskim[92] however rule the Mitzvah[93] is applicable even today. [Some Poskim[94] novelize the Mitzvah can be fulfilled through seeing the floor of the Azara, even if he is not physically there. Accordingly, some meticulous Jews of Jerusalem Jewry are accustomed during the festival to visit a high enough area to be able to see the floor of the Temple mount.[95] Others[96] suggest that even seeing the Kosel suffices for this regard. Other Poskim[97] rule that although the positive command of Aliyah Laregel is not obligatory today, one who does so fulfills a Biblical obligation.] Practically, the Poskim[98] conclude that the Mitzvah of Aliya Laregel is not applicable during exile neither from a Biblical or Rabbinical level, although remains a custom as explained next. 

The custom during exile:[99] (Even after the destruction of the Temple, the custom was to gather from all the surrounding cities of Jerusalem and visit the Temple for the festival. This is done even today.)  [Practically, it is Mitzvah for every person to strive to fulfill this custom.[100]]

For how many days does the Mitzvah apply: The Biblical Mitzvah of Aliyah Laregel mainly applied on the first day of the festival. Nevertheless, one who did not do so was able to fulfill the Mitzvah for a remaining six days, for a total of seven days.[101] This applies likewise to the festival of Shavuos. If one did not perform the Mitzvah of Aliya Laregel on the first day of Shavuos, he could fulfill it for the next six days.[102] [Accordingly, one who was unable to visit the Western Wall on the first day of Yom Tov, is to do so during one of the next six days. This applies likewise to Shavuos.[103] Those who live near the Temple area, visit it on the first day of Shavuos. Those that live far, visit it between the 7th and 12th day of Sivan.]



The Mitzvah of visiting the Temple area during the festival is not applicable in times of exile. Nevertheless, according to one minority approach, the Mitzvah can still be fulfilled through seeing the Temple area, and although today the Mitzvah is not an obligation, one who visits the area near the Temple, fulfills this positive command. Practically, it customary even today to visit Jerusalem and the Kosel during the Shalosh Regalim, and one who cannot do so on the first day of the Holiday is to do so during one of the following six days.


What area of Jerusalem is one to visit?

The Biblical Mitzvah was to visit the area of the Azara on the Temple mount, which cannot be done today due to impurity. The custom today is to visit the Kosel, the Western wall. Some however are accustomed to visit an area from which they can see the floor of the Temple mount, as explained above. 



[1] Michaber 561:1-5; Moed Katan 26

[2] Michaber 561:1

[3] Rama 561:1

[4] See Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:1

[5] Birkeiy Yosef 561 in name of his grandfather, Rav Avraham Azulai, brought in Shaareiy Teshuvah 561:1

[6] Sefer Eretz Yisrael [Tukichinsky] 22:1; Igros Moshe 4:70-11; Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:1

The reason: 1) As we no longer know the exact areas of the cities of Judea. b) Today these cities are rebuilt and are under Jewish sovereignty.

[7] Igros Kodesh 15:452; See Shulchan Menachem 3:70

[8] Sefer Eretz Yisrael [Tukichinsky] 22:2

[9] Rama 561:1

[10] Michaber 561:2

[11] Michaber ibid and Rama 561:1

[12] Michaber 561:2

[13] Bach 561; Peas Hashulchan 3:2; See Piskeiy Teshuvos 561 footnote 9 that some say one is to see the floor of the Azara.

[14] Michaber 561:2

[15] See Michaber Y.D. 340:23; Moed Katan 36b

[16] Michaber 561:4

[17] Sefer Eretz Yisrael [Tukichinsky] 22:4

[18] Michaber 561:4

[19] See Rama 340:10; Sefer Eretz Yisrael [Tukichinsky] 22:4;  Minchas Shlomo 73; Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:4

[20] Michaber 561:2

[21] Michaber 561:4

[22] Michaber 561:5

[23] See Sefer Eretz Yisrael 22:11; Ir Hakodesh Vihamikdash 3:17-5; Betzel Hachochma 5:12; Igros Moshe 5:37; Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:3

[24] See Levushei Mordechai Tinyana 173; Minchas Shlomo 13

[25] Betzel Hachochma 5:12

[26] Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:3;

[27] So ruled Rav Yaakov Yosef; See Halichos Shlomo 3:15

[28] Igros Moshe 4:70-11

[29] Shevet Halevi 7:78; Minchas Shlomo 73; Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:1

[30] Igros Kodesh 15:452; See Shulchan Menachem 3:70; See Igros Kodesh Rayatz 2:205 “On today’s Jerusalem in which they built theaters, one can perform Keria twice.”

[31] Sefer Eretz Yisrael [Tukichinsky] 22:7

[32] Igros Moshe 4:70-11; See Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:14

[33] Rav Mazuz

[34] Michaber 561:5; Radbaz 646; Pischeiy Teshuvah 561

[35] Radbaz 646; Birkeiy Yosef 561; Shaareiy Teshuvah 561; Sefer Eretz Yisrael [Tukichinsky] 22:9; Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:4

[36] Orchos Rabbeinu p. 148; Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:4

[37] See Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:1; Moadim Uzmanim 7:257

[38] See Michaber Y.D. 340:34; Moed Katan 26b; Shach 340:48-50

[39] See Radbaz and Birkeiy Yosef ibid, brought in Pischeiy Teshuvah 561 that the Jerusalem residents would not make a tear every thirty days upon seeing the Temple Mount even though they are obligated to do so.

[40] Mishneh Halachos 6:110

[41] Minchas Shlomo 73

[42] See Igros Kodesh 15:452; See Shulchan Menachem 3:70

[43] Igros Kodesh 15:452; See Shulchan Menachem 3:70

[44] Orchos Rabbeinu p. 148; Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:4; Heard from Harav Yaakov Yosef

[45] Bach 561 regarding Mikdash; M”B 5616; Kaf Hachaim 561:5

[46] Masa Harebbe Lieretz Hakodesh 7; See Hiskashrus 262

[47] Admur 94:1 in parentheses; M”A 560:2; Rambam Beis Habechira 6; Sefer Hateruma; Aguda; Semag; Chinuch; Ritva; Tashbatz; Kaftor Vaferach 6; Yireim 325 Tur; M”B 560:5; Likkutei Halachos Zevachim; Binyan Tziyon 2

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule that in today’s times, during exile, there is no longer a Kareis prohibition involved in entering the restricted areas on the Temple Mount. [Raavad ibid, brought in M”A ibid] Practically, we do not rule like this opinion. [M”A ibid; Binyan Tziyon ibid] Furthermore, there is room to learn that even according to the Raavad there is a prohibition involved. [However, see Radbaz 691]

[48] Rambam Hilchos Bias Hamikdash chapter 2-3

[49] See Pesachim 68a; Tamid 27b; Rashi Yevamos 7b and Zevachim 32b; Tosafus Yuma 6a; Rosh Nazir 44b; Ritva Yevamos 7b; Meiri Yevamos 3b; Yireim 277 and 391; Semag 304

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule a Baal Keri is permitted to enter the Har Habayis. [Omitted from Rambam Hilchos Beis Habechira 7:15; Bais Hamikdash 3:3; and implied from Shevisas Asur 3:3; Aruch Hashulchan Hasid 36:10 concludes this to be the view of the Rambam]

[50] Rambam 3:3

[51] Rambam 3:4

[52] Rambam ibid 3:8

[53] Rambam ibid 3:5-6

[54] Rambam ibid 2:4

[55] Rambam ibid 2:1-2

[56] Rambam ibid 2:4

[57] Rambam ibid 2:1

[58] Rambam ibid 2:3

[59] See Ir Hakodesh Vihamikdash 4:1

[60] Middos 2

[61] Today’s Temple Mount is no longer square and has the following measurements: From East to West: 321 meters by its Northern side and 283 Meters by its southern side, for an average of 302 Meters; From North to South is 490 by its Western side and 482 meters by its Eastern side, for an average of 482 Meters. There is thus an approximate total of 180 extra meters in today’s Har Habayis. [See Ir Hakodesh Vihamikdash 4:1-2] The Eastern wall is 465 meters; the western wall is 488 meters; the northern wall is 317 meters; the southern wall is 275 meters

[62] Some say it is found by the rock that is under the Dome of the rock. [Radbaz 691; Ir Hakodesh Vihamikdash 4:4; All Poskim brought in later footnotes] Others say the rock is the area of the Mizbeaich. [See Ir Hakodesh Vihamikdash 4:4 who negates this position] Others say the Kodesh Hakedoshim is in the Southern area of the Har Habayis. [Kaftor Vaferach]

[63] Some say it is 48 cm [Shiureiy Torah p. 249; Daas Torah 35:116] Others say it is 53 cm [Darkei Teshuvah 19] Others say 54 cm [Aruch Hashulchan Y.D. 201] Others say 57 cm [Meishiv Davar 24] Others say 58 cm [Chazon Ish in Kuntrus Hashiurim 39:5; End of Kitzur SHU”A] 60 cm [Ir Hakodesh Vihamikdash 4:1-3] 63 cm [Darkei Teshuvah in name of Chasam Sofer 181; Levush Mordechai 133]

[64] Radbaz 691; Chida in 561; Chasam Sofer Y.D. 236; Chofetz Chaim Yalkut Halachos Zevachim p. 34; Chazon Ish E.H. 107; See Bach 561:5; Ir Hakodesh Vihamikdash 4:4; Pirkei Derebbe Eliezer end of chapter 30 [omitted from some Nuschaos] “Bnei Yishmael will build a building on the Heichal; The following historians: Bordo [year 333]; Eutychias [year 876]; Binyamon Todelo [year 1170]; Rav Pesachya Mirogenshburg; See Sefer Chatzors Beis Hashem of Rav Menachem Koran

[65] Middos 5:1; Radbaz ibid

[66] Middos 2

[67] There were 11 Amos between the western wall of the Heichal and the wall of the Azara:Beis Hamikdash. [Radbaz ibid] However see that there were 10 Amos from the walls of the Beis Hamikdash to the Cheil. [Mishneh Middos 2:3]

[68] See Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:5

[69] Radbaz ibid; Meiri Shavuos 16a; However see Minchas Yitzchak 5:1; Yabia Omer 5:26; Tzitz Eliezer 10:1

[70] Radbaz ibid [brought in Shaareiy Teshuvah 561:1] defends going on certain steps even though it is possibly part of the section of the restricted area, as a) Maybe it is not part of the restricted area and b) Even if it is, perhaps the air of the Azara was never made holy, and c) Perhaps we rule like the Raavad who holds there is no Kareis today involved in entering the Makom Hamikdash.

[71] Minchas Yitzchak 5:1; Yabia Omer 5:26; Tzitz Eliezer 10:1; Rav Elyashiv; Rav Wozner; Rav SZ”A; Rav Zevin; Rav Yaakov Landa; Rav Kook; Rav Mordechai Eliyahu; Rav Avinar; Chief Rabbi’s of Israel in their respective terms including Rav Kook

[72] Rebbe ibid

[73] Heard from Harav Yaakov Yosef

[74] Printed in Menachem Meishiv Nafshi Erech “Rav Geitz”

[75] Yabia Omer 5 Y.D. 26-9; Kinyan Torah 3:58; Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:5

[76] The reason: As the air over the Azara was sanctified and it is prohibited for a Tamei person or item top enter that area. [ibid; See Rambam Bias Hamikdash 3:19; See Radbaz ibid that it is a doubt if the air of the Azara was made holy.]

[77] Shir Hashirim Raba 2:63; Tana Dvei Eliyahu 30

[78] Eicha Rabasi 1:31; Radbaz 648; Zohar Shemos 5b; See Yeshuos Yaakov on Tana Dvei Eliyahu ibid

[79] See Ir Hakodesh Vehamikdash 4:2

[80] Avnei Nezer 450; Tiferes Tzevi Y.D. 27:12; Mishkanos Leabir Yaakov in name of Maharil Diskin and Rav S.Z.Z of Lublin; Ir Hakodesh Vehamikdash 4:2; Tzitz Eliezer 10:1; Yabia Omer 5:27; Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:6

Other opinions: Some Poskim considered the Western Wall as the wall of the Azara:Beis Hamikdash, [Radbaz 2:691] This opinion has been negated by almost all Gedolei Yisrael, and archeologists. See Ir Hakodesh Vehamikdash ibid

[81] Some Poskim considered the Western Wall as the wall of the Azara:Beis Hamikdash, [Radbaz 2:691; Shaareiy Tzedek 11:8; Poskim brought in Ir Hakodesh Vehamikdash ibid] which would mean that Har Habayis begins much earlier, into which a Tamei person may not enter. [See Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:6]

[82] Mishkanos Leabir Yaakov [Adart]; See Ir Hakodesh Vehamikdash 4:50 for a lengthy discussion on this matter and how even if we accept the notion that the Kosel contains the Kedusha of Har Habayis, it would only be forbidden for one who did not Toivel to enter his fingers there. Furthermore, he does not accept the novelty of the Adart that even touching would be forbidden

[83] The reason: As perhaps the actual wall of the Har Habayis has the same Kedusha as the Har Habayis, and if so, one who is Tamei from Zav, Baal Keri, Nidda or Yoledes, cannot enter his fingers there.

[84] Avnei Nezer 450; Tiferes Tzevi Y.D. 27:12; Mishkanos Leabir Yaakov in name of Maharil Diskin and Rav S.Z.Z of Lublin; Ir Hakodesh Vehamikdash 4:2; Tzitz Eliezer 10:1; Yabia Omer 5:27; Piskeiy Teshuvos 561:6

The opinion of the Rebbe: It is recorded that the Rebbe inquired into this matter on numerous occasions upon having visitations from Gedolei Yisrael in Eretz Yisrael. On one occasion, the Rebbe is said to have told a Chassid that he should stick the note into the wall using a stick. [See Hiskashrus 259 and 261] It is told that when the Rebbe Rayatz visited Eretz Yisrael in the year 5688 he inquired as to whether people kiss the Kosel wall, and after the affirmative reply, he went ahead and kissed the wall. See Sefer Hasichos 5688 p. 25

[85] The reason: As in truth the walls of Har Habayis do not contain the Kedusha of Har Habayis. [ibid]

[86] See Ir Hakodesh Vehamikdash ibid

[87] Devarim 16:16; Rambam Hilchos Chagiga 1:1; Chinuch 489; Semag 360

[88] Rambam Hilchos Chagiga 1:1; Chinuch 489; Semag 360; Ridbaz on Yerushalmi Chagiga 1:1; Turei Even Chagiga 2a that so is opinion of Bavli; See Minchas Chinuch 489-490; Noda Beyehuda Tinayna 94; Yearos Devash 1:12

[89] Turei Even Chagiga 2a that so is opinion of Yerushalmi; Yireim 425; 403 “When one comes to see Hashem, he is to bring charity or a Karban”

[90] See Chagiga 7a; Rambam Chagiga 1:1

[91] Yachel Yisrael 1:14

[92] Tashbatz 3:201; Chasam Sofer Hesped after Parshas Emor “It is a Mitzvah to visit Lalos Liregel even today”; Chasam Sofer Y.D. 233; However see Chasam Sofer ibid 234 “In today’s time there is no obligation”; Yechaveh Daas 1:25 “Certainly there is a Mitzvah also today”, although see Yechaveh Daas 2:10 who writes it does not apply today

[93] It is unclear if his intent is Biblical or Rabbinical

[94] Rav Shlezinger, student of Chasam Sofer, in Shut Rav Akiva Yosef 160, brought in Piskeiy Teshuvos 529 footnote 51

[95] Har Hakadosh p. 277; Custom of Rav SZ”A

[96] See Siach Yitzchak 2:142

[97] Mishneh Halachos 12:489; Piskeiy Teshuvos 529:13; Perhaps this is the intent of Chasam Sofer and Yechaveh Daas ibid; See also Or Letziyon 3:24-12

[98] Implication of Admur 117:1 in parentheses; Levush 117:1; Ran Taanis 2a; Ridbaz on Yerushalmi Chagiga 1:1; Minchas Chinuch 489-490; Noda Beyehuda Tinayna 94; Yearos Devash 1:12

Igros Moshe Y.D. 3:122

[99] Admur 117:1 in parentheses; Levush 117:1; Ran Taanis 2a; Midrash Shir Hashirim 4:2 “Just as a dove returns to visit its destroyed nest, so too the Jewish people visit the Temple during Shalosh Regalim even after the destruction; Sefer Chassidim 630 “Rav Haiy Gaon would travel to Yerushalayim from Bavel to be there for Sukkos”; Kaftor Vaferach 6 “We are accustomed together with the lands of Syria, and Egypt to visit the Yerushalyim by the Moadim”; Maharit 1:134; Maharitz Chayos on Nedarim 23a; Tashbatz 3:201; Maharal bach; Yaavetz 1:87; Avos Harosh 1:117; Sdei Chemed Mareches Eretz Yisrael 1; Igros Moshe Y.D. 3:122; Piskeiy Teshuvos 529:13

[100] Chasam Sofer Hesped after Parshas Emor “It is a Mitzvah to visit Lalos Liregel even today”; Chasam Sofer Y.D. 233; Sdei Chemed ibid; Yechaveh Daas 1:25 “Certainly there is a Mitzvah also today”; Or Letziyon 3:24-12

[101] Rambam Hilchos Chagiga 1:4

[102] Rambam Hilchos Chagiga 1:7

[103] Piskeiy Teshuvos 529:13 footnote 49

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