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Forbidden carrying on Yom Tov (!)
Dedicated by Sheila and Joseph Accortt

In honor of their 50th Golden Wedding Anniversary. Mazel Tov!

10 Elul 5773 / August 16, 2013

MBY 522:1-4 Forbidden carrying on Yom Tov (!)

Intro: Throughout our study of Hilchos Yom Tov, we have learned about the various Torah prohibitions and Rabbinic decrees, together with their exceptions. There is another small class of activities that the Rabbis prohibited – not because they might lead to Torah violation, but because they detract from the spirit of the festival. (Ed. I wonder whether ‘tircha’/exertion, of which we learned in the last siman, falls into this class.)To answer these questions, let us quote a succinct footnote to Artscroll’s Schottenstein Talmud, Beitzah 25b2 #21: “This ruling does not refer to someone who would be unable to walk without a cane. It is restricted to a blind person and the like, whose use of a cane is to provide additional stability and comfort, but who can get around without a cane.” OK, but still - why is it prohibited on Yom Tov? I could understand why the Rabbis would prohibit it on Shabbos, out of fear that the person would carry it without using it as a crutch, thus violating ‘hotza’ah’/transporting, which is a full-fledged melacha on Shabbos. But on Yom Tov – there is no prohibition against ‘hotza’ah’, especially if the object is needed for Yom Tov?!

The answer is what we explained in our introduction to this lesson: The use of these implements when they are not of vital use to the individual are classified as “weekday acts which violate the festival spirit!”

The take-home lesson is this: Before we permit an act of carrying on Yom Tov, let us be sure that it is not prohibited to carry by dint of the Rabbinic prohibition against weekday-like activities (Heb. ‘derech chol’/weekday-like manner or ‘zilzul Yom Tov’/degradation of Yom Tov.

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