More Discussions for this daf
1. Rav allowed Rav Acha Bardela to sleep in a "Kilah" 2. Building a Sukah in a field 3. tosfos : d"h "Aval"
4. Gemara Tosafot : DH Velo Birach Alav 5. Ein Keva l'Sheinah 6. Forgeting To Remove Tefilin
7. Tefillin Covered by Sudar

David G. asks:

The Rambam refers to a situation where a man forgets to remove his tefillin when with his wife. My question is: if someone were pious enough to wear tefillin all day, then certainly he would be pious enough to remove them with everything else IF we assume he was clothed WHFN wearing the tefillin in the first place.

What are your thoughts on this?


David G.

The Kollel replies:

I would add to your question, that it is forbidden for a person to allow his mind to stray from thinking about his Tefillin as long as he is wearing them (Shulchan Aruch OC 28:1). Furthermore, even thinking about relations with a woman is forbidden when wearing Tefillin (Shulchan Aruch OC 28:4).

It is therefore indeed hard to understand how a person could come to such a situation, and I would just suggest that although the scenario is unlikely the Gemara must still tell us the Halachah as it would apply in this case.

Dov Freedman

Chaim Mendelson comments:

The Rambam is in Hilchos Tefilin (4:21).

To answer the question, we must preface, that in the days of Chazal, people customarily wore their tefilin the entire day. This wasn't something that was exclusively reserved for pious people, it was the way of life of a Jew. (Why we don't do this today, is beyond the scope of this discussion).

I suggest, that due to this custom, their tefillin became like part of the person, and no special attention was necessarily paid to them (similar to the tzitzis, which are worn all day, and most people don't pay special attention to them). This reality could lead a person to the scenarios which the gemara and the Rambam discuss.

When a person is caught in the flame of passion; in his hurry to fulfill his desire, he might not stop to completely disrobe. The tefilin might also be be forgotten about in his haste.

[See the gemara (bid.), which implies that this concern was greater regarding the younger generation. We must also remember, that in the days of Chazal, many people married as young teenagers. So it shouldn't be too difficult to imagine, that a couple with raging hormones might just forget about the husband's tefilin].

I add, that the Rambam (ibid. 4:20) also discusses someone who forgets to remove his tefilin before relieving himself in the bathroom (based on Berachos 025a - top). The explanation would be along similar lines. Their tefilin was part and parcel of them, and if someone had an urgent need to use the bathroom, in his haste, he might forget to remove them.

Chaim Mendelson