Feb 23, 2009

And here is a chumrah I never heard of....

The tiyulim board of Israel Channel 2 took a tour of Meah She'arim. Aside from the discussion of the history and the discussion of the mode of communication called "pashkevilim", they mention a chumrah they found in Meah She'arim.

The chumrah, and this is one I never heard of, is not hanging women's laundry to dry with men's laundry!

Personally, I think it is not a chumrah, but perhaps a convenience - either they wash them separately for convenience, and therefore hang them separately. Or perhaps it is an issue of washing different types of fabrics separately, and therefore hangining them separately.. Or some other "convenience" reason.

But they say they walked around for three hours and did not see a single instance of mens aundry haning to dry with women's laundry! That is a long time to look at laundry and not see a single instance, if it is just for convenience reasons...

I am surprised they even noticed that, and that the laundry became part of the tour...

(I don't call it "Chumrah of the Month" because I don't know if it is really done as a chumrah or just a convenience....)

Has anybody heard of such a thing? Or can you propose a reason for this, if in fact it is some sort of minhag or chumrah?


  1. The halakha says that one is not supposed to look at the garment of a woman, even if she is not wearing it, if it will cause improper thoughts.

    Maybe you can start from there-

    Were women's clothes actually hanging, only not together with men's? Maybe they don't hang women's clothes at all...

  2. I think that this is just a toztah of the real din. There is no issur at all to hang men and womes clothes together.

    However, there is a shaila by mixed swimming if there is a problem of mixed swimming eve if you are fully dressed. Now, being that the oilam in meah shearim likes to do as much as they can based on how it was done in the alya heim - meaning meah shearim - they do laundry by tossing the clothing into a pool of water. Now you can clearly see how the issur of mixed swimming ended up fallign into play here - bc according to some poiskim there is even an issur derabonon to have mixed swimming of cloting. So they cant wash them together. Now even those that use a washing machine are machmir - 1) bc they dont want any one to know thay use a washing machine and 2) we are not noheig kulas anymore and 3) to be yotze the daas yachid that even in a washign machien, its assur m'ikakr d'dina

    ps - i think jeremy is right according to the minority opinion

  3. no I think it's alot simpler:
    The men mostly wear suits and long coats which are all dry clean and not hung on the line. Probably much of the womens stuff is also dry clean except for the robes which probably get hung inside as well. It's obvious that they don;t hang women's undergarments outside because of tznius. Then seminary girls all wear button down shirts that can easily be misinterpreted as men's clothes. The other possibility is convenience of seperating darks and whites.

  4. If this is a chumrah, the fact that we have never heard of it before means that it's a good chumrah.

    The bad chumrahs are those that some try to force on others (e.g. mehadrin buses).

  5. This may have something to do with Tumas Madres (though we're generally not Makpid on this in present times). I do know that a Sefardic relative of mine is Makpid that the wife's clothing not be washed with that of other family members at certain specific times - perhaps a zecher of the issue?

  6. Obviously, leftist drivle! Why else would one waste hours specifically looking for co-mingled or inter-mingled laundry on clothes lines. These guys need to get a life instead of trying to take political correctness to new depths.

  7. From the link you provided, I like this line:

    נדמה כי רחוב זה צר יותר מרוחב האוטובוסים החולפים בו – ממש נס מקומי.

  8. maybe it happened during the 9 days, when men's laundry wasn't done, but women's had to be for halacha reasons :)


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