Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Noda Biyehuda Kama O”C 35 - Part 1

Noda Biyehuda Kama O”C 35

This is related to the blog in several ways:
1) It discusses an issue if a woman is permitted to stay with her husband after being unfaithful without 2 witnesses;
2) Several issues crop up that are found in Gemara Makos – omer mutar (I hope to discuss that later) and a mishna on Daf 21 about repeatedly violating the same sin, you get punished multiple times; and
3) It discusses a course of Teshuva for a person to follow. Because we are in the Aseres Yemai Teshuva, this issue is inyana diyoma.

I will paraphrase the whole Teshuva (in this context means responsum, not repentance) (normally I translate directly).

Question: a man (who was single) had a relationship with an eishes ish for 3 years. They stopped their affair, and this man married her daughter(!). The man wants to do teshuva (he had already stopped the aveira of eishes ish for a while), and wants to know if he must ask forgiveness from the woman’s husband (his current father-in-law). Also, if he informs the father-in-law, that man will have to separate from his wife, because a woman who committed adultery is forbidden to stay with her husband. Also, if they were to separate it would be a scandal because the family is a well-regarded family. So is it better for him not to tell his father-in-law? Should he instead speak to the beis din? And he wants to do teshuva, so what should he do; he is a weak man who studies a lot of Torah?

The Response:
Must he tell the man whose wife was unfaithful to him to separate him from a prohibition [of staying with his unfaithful wife] where the family name will be tarnished – can we be lenient because of kavod habrios [and not tell] because kavod habrios pushes off a lo taseh? Now, kavod habrios (k”h) only pushes off as lav as shev v’al taaseh (by doing nothing) but an action for the sake of k”h won’t push it off. As far as the baal teshuva is concerned it is shev v’al taaseh, what about for the husband – he will stay with his unfaithful wife by doing a maaseh [of tashmish] but since he doesn’t know about it (the affair) it’s only shogeg? (It seems the questioner wanted to allow this, and now the Noda Biyehuda will discuss it.)

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