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Section: Halacha   Category: Tshuvos
Rav Elyashiv - High Flying Chanuka Candles

If a person is scheduled to be on an airplane at the time of Hadlakas Neiros and he doesn't have anyone to light for him ion the house, is he obligated to cancel his flight in order to enable him to light the Neiros? R. Elyashiv Shlit'a says that he is not obligated to cancel a flight for this reason even though he is losing out on the Mitzvah. Since at the time he left his house it was not yet the time for the Hadlakah and when the time of Hadlakah arrives he is not in a place where it is possible to be Yotzei the Mitzvah, he is Patur from the Mitzvah for that night. A person is not obligated to ensure that he is not in a place that will make it impossible for him to fulfill a Mitzvah. (Pninei Chanukah

The She'arim HaMetzuyanim B'Halacha (139:13) holds that you should light the candles on the plane (provided it is safe and legal).  He brings the Maharsham (4:146), who says that you should light on a train because you are renting the place to eat and sleep.  The fact that the train is moving does not diminish the Pirsumei Nisa.  Regarding the high altitude, he says that it is no worse than living in a tall building. 

Important Note: We try to convey the Tshuva to the best of our ability. We admit that our understanding may not be accurate. Please also understand that this Tshuva may not be the final word on this topic. One should consult a Rav before drawing any conclusions.

RELATED ARTICLES:airplane  Chanuka  halacha  Maharsham  menora  Rav Elyashiv  She'arim HaMetzuyanim B'Halacha  train

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Visitor Comments: 1

YG, Yerushalyim, 2010-12-02 02:22:03
Are you positive this is from Maran Rav Elyashiv Shlita? I heard from R. Nissin Kaplan himself the teshuva with a very important hosafoh which you left out-said this over BSHEM Rav Elyashiv Shlita.

The avreich had to go to South Africa durning Channukah for a chasuna, he asked Rav Nissin what to do? Rav Nissin told him he has to cancel his flight, he is mechuyav in a mitzvah, he is not allow to take a flight. went to ask Rav Elyashiv and he told him osek in a mitzvah patur min a mitzvah. BUT told him to make a cheshbon, if he would miss Krias Megillah would he still take the trip...its the same aveira exactly as missing Megillah.

He asked but what about R. Shlomo Zalman Auerbach's Zt'l teshuva to use the flashlights for Neiros channukah on an airplane, Rav Elayshiv said that is only bedieved on a bracha and not enough lchatchila to be somech on it. Also that a plane is not called a house.

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