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Mezuzah

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How the mezuzah should be placed
==How the mezuzah should be placed==
# The mezuzah should be put up on the doorpost which is to one's right upon one's entering the room. <ref> Gemara Menachot 33b, Rambam Hilchot Mezuzah 6:12, Shulchan Aruch 289:2, Aruch Hashulchan 289:5, Taz 289:3, Levush 289:2, Aruch Hashulchan 289:5, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 11:3, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch of Rav Mordechai Eliyahu 11:3. </ref> This is true for a left handed person as well. <ref> Mordechai Halachot Ketanot 962, Bach 289:5, Shach 289:5, Levush 289:2, Chayei Adam 15:17, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 11:3, Aruch Hashulchan 289:5, Kuntres Hamezuzah (page 102, note 22). </ref># While Sephardim place the mezuzah straight up<ref> Rashi Menachot 33a s.v. pesula, Shulchan Aruch 289:6, Ben Ish Chai Ki Tavo Year 2 Halacha 7. This was also the minhag of the Gr"a (Biurei Hagra 289:14. Also see Orchos Rabbeinu 1:page 378:27) </ref>, Ashkenazim place it on a slant, with the top leaning towards the inside and the bottom towards the outside. <ref>Rabbenu Tam cited by Tosfot Menachot 33a s.v. ha, Rama 289:6, Levush 289:6, Chayei Adam 15:19, Minchas Elazar 1:36:1, Pitchei Mezuzahs 289:57, Chovat Hadar 9:footnote 20. Chovat Hadar 9:footnote 20 explains that the reason for this is that the opinion of Rashi says if you place it sideways it is not kosher, while Rabbenu Tam Menachot 33a s.v. ha holds that if it is straight up it is not kosher, so Ashkenazim try to fulfill the mitzvah according to both opinions. </ref> ===Outer Tefach===
# The mezuzah should be placed on the outer [[tefach]] of the doorpost. <ref> Gemara Menachot 32b, Tur 289, Shulchan Aruch 289:2, Levush 289:2, Chayei Adam 15:17, Aruch Hashulchan 289:9. Taz 289:3 writes that the mezuzah is still kosher if the mezuzah isn't on the outer [[tefach]]. </ref>
===When It Is Put Up===
# One may put up a mezuzah at night.<ref>Rav Mordechai Eliyahu (comment on Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 11:10), Ben Ish Chai Parashat Ki Tavo Year 2: Halacha 4, Shevet Hakehati 1:277, Mezuzat Baitecha 289:6, Rivevot Ephraim 7:369. </ref>
===Which Is the Right Side?===# The criteria by which one can determine which side the mezuzah should be used are as follows: ## The mezuzah should be put up on the doorpost which is to one's right upon one's entering the room. <ref> Gemara Menachot 33b, Rambam Hilchot Mezuzah 6:12, Shulchan Aruch 289:2, Aruch Hashulchan 289:5, Taz 289:3, Levush 289:2, Aruch Hashulchan 289:5, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 11:3, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch of Rav Mordechai Eliyahu 11:3. </ref> This criteria applies equally to the outer doors of the house to the rooms inside the house.<ref>Igrot Moshe YD 4:43:4</ref>## If a the door is commonly used equally for both entry and exit then there if one of the two rooms that it connects is used more frequently then the mezuzah should be put up on the right side going into the room that is used more frequently.<ref>Igrot Moshe YD 4:43:4. He writes that even though the Daat Kedoshim writes that the mezuzah is determined based on the frequency of use of the rooms, he holds that that only is because generally the direction that is used for entry is a doubt as going to be used more frequently but if this factor conflicts with the factor of entry we follow that one.</ref>## If the position of the mezuzah cannot be determined based on which direction is used for entry or which room is used more frequently it can be determined by the door. Since the door generally swings into the room (besides the outermost door of the house) the way the door swings can be considered the way one enters the room and the mezuzah is placed on the right side entering the room.<ref>Menachot 33a, Shulchan Aruch YD 289:3, Aruch Hashulchan 289:6</ref> However, if the mezuzah is determined based on the previous factors it doesn't matter which way the door swings.<ref>Mordechai cited by Bet Yosef YD 289, Shach 289:6, Aruch Hashulchan 289:7, Igrot Moshe YD 4:43:3</ref>## Generally, the route by which a person walks around their house should be consecutively entering one room to another creating a circuit. For example, if the door of the house leads exclusively to room A which leads to room B and on to room C then the mezuzot should be placed uponon the right side of the door entering the house from the outside to A to B to C. However, this rule isn't ironclad, but if one rather the first two rules are definitive.<ref>Igrot Moshe YD 4:43:4</ref>## If it is impossible to determine which side to put up the mezuzah based on the criteria of (1) whether the door is used more for entry or exiting, (2) which of the two rooms that the door connects is used more frequently, and (3) the door hinges because the door is used equally for entry and exiting, the two rooms are used equally and there is no door, according to some poskim there is no obligation to put up a mezuzah at all, while according to others there should be a mezuzah on both sides.<ref>Igrot Moshe YD 1:176 holds that if the direction in which the mezuzah should be put because it isn't used more for entry than exiting, the other directionrooms it connects are used equally, and there is no door, then there is obligation to put up a mezuzah at all. He quotes the Yavetz who says to put up a mezuzah on both posts out of doubt but he disagrees. He also rejects the opinion of the mezuza questioner to put up a mezuzah on the side of his choice. See Rav Mordechai Eliyahu's comment to Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 11:4 where he rights that if there is a doubt as to which side the mezuzah should be placed there is a safek as to what one should do.</ref># The halacha that the mezuzah is placed on the right relative side of the door applies equally to that sidea left handed person as well. <ref> Mordechai Halachot Ketanot 962, Bach 289:5, Shach 289:5, Levush 289:2, Chayei Adam 15:17, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch of Rav Mordechai Eliyahu 11:3, Aruch Hashulchan 289:5, Kuntres Hamezuzah (page 102, note 22). </ref># The side on which the mezuzah is placed depends on the norm of the people who use the house whether they own it, live there, are obligated in mezuzah or not. It doesn't depend on which way the homeowner wants to be the main direction of entry; it solely depends on which direction is used for more for entry in practice by the people who use it.<ref>Igrot Moshe YD 4 :43:2</ref>===Straight or Diagonal===# While Sephardim place the mezuzah straight up<ref> Rashi Menachot 33a s.v. pesula, Shulchan Aruch 289:6, Ben Ish Chai Ki Tavo Year 2 Halacha 7. This was also the minhag of the Gr"a (Biurei Hagra 289:14. Also see Orchos Rabbeinu 1:page 378:27) </ref>, Ashkenazim place it on a slant, with the top leaning towards the inside and the bottom towards the outside. <ref>Rabbenu Tam cited by Tosfot Menachot 33a s.v. ha, Rama 289:6, Levush 289:6, Chayei Adam 15:19, Minchas Elazar 1:36:1, Pitchei Mezuzahs 289:57, Chovat Hadar 9:footnote 20. Chovat Hadar 9:footnote 20 explains that the reason for this is that the opinion of Rashi says if you place it sideways it is not kosher, while Rabbenu Tam Menachot 33a s.v. ha holds that if it is straight up it is not kosher, so Ashkenazim try to fulfill the mitzvah according to both opinions. </ref>
===Height===
# The mezuzah should be placed at the beginning of the upper third of the height of the doorway<ref> Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 11:5, Rashi Menachot 33a s.v. “bitechila,” Rambam Hilchot Mezuzah 6:12, Tur 289, Prisha 289:6, Shulchan Aruch 289:2, Levush 289:2, Chayei Adam 15:17, Pitchei Mezuzahs 289:24, Chovat Hadar 8:2:4, Teshuvot Vihanhagot 2:539. See Yabia Omer YD 2:21 where Chacham Ovadia Yosef quotes poskim who say that if it was placed higher than the beginning of the top third it should be moved without a beracha to there, but himself disagrees. </ref> but it should be placed at least a [[Tefach]] from the top of the doorway. <ref> Tur 289, Shulchan Aruch 289:2, Levush 289:2, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 11:5 </ref> If it is not in the top third it isn't kosher. <ref> Beit Yosef 289, Shach 289:4, Taz 289:3. </ref>

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