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Section:  Avodah   Category: 48 Kinyanei Torah
Kinyan 36 Eino Samei'ach B'Hora'a - Was Rebbi Akiva Eiger Good Enough?

We may not see it, but world events revolve around Torah and Kiyum HaMitzvos.  To pasken a Shaila is an incredible responsibility.  If you pasken incorrectly, the ramifications are immeasurable.  The gemara in Avoda Zara (19) says on the pasuk in Mishlei (7:26) "Ki Rabim Chalalim Hipila", many corpses have fallen, that this refers to a Talmid Chochom who paskens and is not worthy.  The ramifications of a wrong psak can kill not one but many.  But on the other hand continues the gemara, "VaAtzumim Kol Harugeha" massive are its murdered, this refers to a worthy posek who refuses to pasken.

Many of the greatest poskim were famously terrified of paskening halacha.  The Mishel HaAvos brings that none other than Rebbi Akiva Eiger writes that he is not worthy enough to pasken Halacha L'Ma'aseh.  Rav Tzvi Pesach Frank would only answer Shailos that he felt needed his personal attention.  Otherwise he would say that he doesn't need a Mitzva, "SheEfshar La'asos Al Yidei Acheirim" that can be done by others.  He would always quote the pasuk that says, "Asos Mishpat V'Ahavas Chesed".  Performing chesed is something you should love. Justice or psak, on the other hand is something that you are required to dispense when no other alternative exists. 

The gemara in Sanhedrin (7a) says that every Dayan must feel like a sword is between his legs and Gehinom is opened up below him.  One wrong move and you are finished.  This should make the Dayan think it over two ,three, four or as many times as he needs until he is completely sure.   If you think that  you know it all, you will not learn more.  If you are afraid to pasken and you challenge every psak from every angle, you will be koneh Torah that is Emes L'Amito.

RELATED ARTICLES:48 kinyanei torah  posek  Rav Tzvi Pesach Frank  Rebbi Akiva Eiger

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