Halacha for Wednesday 19 Av 5781 July 28 2021

Question: If one becomes obligated to recite an after-blessing after eating any food (for instance, by eating a Kezayit, approximately twenty-seven grams, of fruit) and before reciting the after-blessing, one used the facilities and becomes obligated to recite the “Asher Yatzar” blessing, which blessing must one recite first: Should one first recite the “Asher Yatzar” blessing or the after-blessing on the food one ate?

Answer: This question has already been discussed by the Maharshal (Rabbeinu Shlomo Luria, one of the foremost Acharonim who lived approximately five-hundred years ago in Eastern Poland and authored the Sefer Yam Shel Shlomo and others) in his responsa (Chapter 97) and writes that if one becomes obligated to recite an after-blessing on any given food one eats and then becomes obligated to recite the “Asher Yatzar” blessing, one should recite the “Asher Yatzar” blessing first and only then recite the after-blessing on the food based on the rule, “The more frequent of two Mitzvot is  performed first.” Thus, the “Asher Yatzar” blessing is recited consistently several times every day while regarding an after-blessing on food, there is a possibility that one will not become obligated to recite it for several days.

Hagaon Ya’abetz (Rabbeinu Yaakov Emdin ben Tzvi, son of the Chacham Tzvi, who lived approximately three-hundred years ago in Germany) writes regarding this ruling: “In my humble opinion, who says that this blessing (an after-blessing on food) is any less frequent that the other (the “Asher Yatzar” blessing)? On the contrary, for most people, eating and drinking is more common than using the facilities. Thus, if we are ruling based on the frequency of the blessings, indeed, the after-blessing on food should be recited before the “Asher Yatzar” blessing.” He nevertheless concludes that he agrees with the Maharshal’s ruling but not because of his reasoning that the “Asher Yatzar” blessing is more common; rather, it is for a different reason which is that since this individual has now become obligated to praise and thank Hashem for the perfection of one’s body through the “Asher Yatzar” blessing, one must therefore surely recite the blessing which one has become obligated to recite now since one will not be able to recite the after-blessing immediately upon finishing to eat in any case, for that time has already elapsed. Thus, one should recite the “Asher Yatzar” blessing and only then recite the after-blessing on food. Many other great Poskim discuss this issue and provide sources for either option.

Halachically speaking, Maran Rabbeinu Ovadia Yosef zt”l writes (in his Yabia Omer, Volume 9, page 183) that one should indeed recite the “Asher Yatzar” blessing first and only then recite the after-blessing on the food, either because of the Maharshal’s reason or because of the reason quoted by Hagaon Ya’abetz.

Ask the Rabbi


8 Halachot Most Popular

The Proper Way to Immerse Vessels in a Mikveh

One must make certain that there is nothing separating between the vessel one is immersing and the waters of the Mikveh. Thus, when one is immersing a vessel, one must hold the vessel loosely, for if one holds it tight, one’s hand will be separating between the vessel and the waters of the Mik......

Read Halacha

Reading Scripture at Night

Question: May one read chapters of Tanach or Tehillim at night or is this forbidden according to Kabbalah? Is there room for leniency when this reading is being done for the sake of an ill individual or a woman in labor? Answer: Maran Ha’Chida in his Responsa Yosef Ometz (Chapter 54) quotes......

Read Halacha

Spiritual Blockage of the Heart

Question: Must one be careful regarding the Kashrut standards of the foods one’s children eat as well? Answer: Regarding any food which is prohibited for consumption by the Torah, such as milk and meat or an impure animal’s milk, it is certainly forbidden to give such foods to childre......

Read Halacha

Question: Is one obligated to wait six hours after eating meat foods before eating dairy foods?

Answer: The Gemara in Masechet Chullin (105a) states: “Mor Ukva said: When my father would eat meat, he would not eat cheese until the next day. Regarding myself, however, within the same meal I do not eat meat and then cheese, but I would eat cheese during the next meal.” The Rif writes......

Read Halacha


Drinking Beverages in a Café or in a Home Where the Vessels have not been Immersed in a Mikveh

Question: May one drink coffee in a friend’s home or in a Café (such as an espresso without milk served in Cafes) when they are not meticulous about immersing their vessels in a Mikveh? Answer: In the Halachot discussed before Tisha Be’av, we have explained that vessels produc......

Read Halacha

Question: Do disposable vessels and electric kettles require immersion in a Mikveh?

Answer: In the previous Halachot, we have discussed the general law that any new vessels purchased from a non-Jew must be immersed in a Mikveh before using them. We shall now discuss whether or not disposable vessels require immersion. We have already explained that according to Maran zt”l,......

Read Halacha

Eating Dairy Items after Eating Poultry

In the previous Halacha we have discussed in general the law that one must wait six hours after eating meat before eating dairy foods either because the nature of meat is to get stuck between one’s teeth or because meat gives off a taste in one’s mouth for a prolonged amount of time. ......

Read Halacha

The Laws of Fire on Yom Tov

In previous Halachot we have explained that Yom Tov and Shabbat are equal regarding all prohibitions besides for certain works associated with food preparation, such as cooking, which are permitted on Yom Tov. Igniting a Flame One may not produce a new fire on Yom Tov, for instance by striking a......

Read Halacha