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Dec 24, 2013

Rav Chaim Kanievsky invalidates mikvas, weddings and divorces due to the iPhone

Are you the owner of an iPhone or do you have unfiltered Internet access? You already know the various things you can't do - be chazzan, blow shofar, hear shofar in certain shuls, etc..

The latest is now announced in the name of Rav Chaim Kanievsky, and this is a real shocker. All the previous announcements are upsetting and frustrating, but this one has actual ramifications.

According to what is being said in the name of Rav Chaim Kanievsky, such a person cannot be a witness at a wedding or at a divorce, and one who did act as such a witness will invalidate the proceedings, even bdieved. The wedding should be performed again, and the get should be given again.

This means that there are thousands of adulterers, eishet ish, mamzerim walking around out there without even knowing it.

Rav Feinhandler, director of the committee for purity in communications and the person quoting Rav Kanievsky, also said that such a person cannot build a mikva (i.e. do the hashaka process of connecting the mikva water pit to the mikva pool), and a woman cannot supervise the immersion in the mikva if she has an iPhone.

And, he adds, in many places, such as in Jerusalem, mikvas are built by, and weddings and divorces or officiated by, the Rabbanut and religious councils, and they don't ask such questions, so they cannot be relied upon - i.e. their mikvas, weddings and divorces must be assumed to be invalid.
(source: Kikar)

So, we have eishet ish, mamzerim, passul mikvaot, boalei nidda and children of unions with nidda.

pretty much all marriages are going to be invalidated by this. Yes, even in the haredi community, though maybe in slightly lower percentages. This psak would destroy the family unit. Any marriage after the invention of the iphone is dissolved. Divorces are dissolved, making a big mess of who is married to whom.

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  1. Rabbi Kanievsky is a very big talmid chacham who is clueless when it comes to "mili de'alma". I am pretty sure that he has no idea what an iPhone is, or of the ramifications of what he is saying. Buy and learn Derech Emunah, but as for the rest....

  2. I see a few possibilities.

    1) Rav Kanievsky actually said this and is totally clueless about anything approaching reality (and Halachah).
    2) He is misquoted and Charedim don't feel anything is wrong in lying about what their "Gedolim" say.
    3) This is a bad joke and Charedim don't care that they are being Mevazeh their Talmidei Chachamim.

    1. 4) Rav Kanievsky doesn't hold by IOS and is trying to promote the use of the android platform. A source associated with Rav Kanievsky claims to have heard him praise the open source philosophy at numerous occasions.

    2. you're a hoot.
      can't wait to see what you come up with for purim

  3. Aharon Feinhandler, author of this letter, in action:

  4. I see here a big opportunity for a start-up: a database app that will list all the newly created mamzerim and psulei eidus. The app will automatically be synced with one's facebook profile and will include GPS technology to aid one in finding a pure minyan etc.
    the app will be available to download in iTunes' App Store and google play.

  5. Halacha can get super complicated when it comes to :what if the eid only gets a smart phone after the wedding?.. is your marriage batul from the moment of phone purchase? or does it act retroactively,? what if you are pregnant when said eid purchases said phone, but have not given birth yet? at what point does the eid become a "treif" witness? What if the mikva was built by kosher people and the attendant is ok, but the woman being tovel has a smart phone- will she ever be kosher? is she "metameh" the water for the people after her?

    They should be offering crash courses in local shuls to help answer these complex and super important questions...

  6. And what if you tovel with the phone, is it like a sheretz?

  7. What is the big deal? The yeshiva world just wants to put everyone on an equal footing. Kollel weddings (where the guy plans to do nothing but learn for years) have been possul for years. The kesuva says he will support his wife. So the kesuva is a lie and the witnesses are eidei sheker. So now the rest of the world's weddings are posul. Maybe only people with internet should be allowed to be such eidim.

  8. You left out the most important tidbit:

    Rabbi Aaron Feinhandler and his Committee for Clean Communications have been trying to develop the Kosher iPhone (limited Internet filtered by them, no SMS and no Social Apps ) for over a year now.

    So far they haven't succeeded - but their PR campaign is in full swing - so that they can hit the market running.

    A brilliant business man, it seems.


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