Tuesday, August 14, 2012

.י"ג Why not answer אמן?

אלו הן בין הפרקים בין ברכה ראשונה לשניה בין שניה לשמע
The (שולחן ערוך (או"ח נ"ט:ד states that one should not answer אמן to the ברכה right before שמע. This is based on a number of ראשונים as indicated in באר הגולה. The משנה ברורה explains that it is treated like a ברכת המצוה. It is therefore the practice of many to say the ברכה with the חזן in order to avoid requiring an אמן. This הלכה has bothered me for quite some time based on our משנה. The משנה lists all of the points which are considered בין הפרקים. There is nothing to indicate that there should be any difference between any of them. They seem to be perfectly equivalent. Why, then, would one be treated more seriously than the other? All the rules of permissible interruptions should apply after הבוחר בעמו ישראל באהבה just as they do after יוצר המאורות. What is the basis for this distinction?

1 comment:

  1. Just to add to the question: the Biur Halacha there says that according to the Bais Yosef, lichatchila, one should try to end the Bracha of Yotzer Hame’oros simultaneously with the Chazzan to avoid having to answer amen, just like we are noheg by habocher b’amo yisrael. On the flip side, the Rema writes (61:3) that one should answer amen after habocher b’amo yisrael (and certainly after yotzer ha’meoros). So both the Rema (yes amen after both brachos) and Bais Yosef (no amen after both brachos) are consistent. What’s troubling is our minhag which makes the split of answering amen after the first bracha but not after the second bracha.