Peninei Halakha

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05. One Who Did Not Sleep All Night

The poskim disagree about the status of one who stayed up all night. In practice, SA 4:13 states that such a person must wash her hands before prayer without a berakha. That way, on one hand, she fulfills her obligation according to the opinion that she must wash her hands, but on the other hand, she avoids possibility of having recited a berakha le-vatala.

According to MB 4:30, it is best for one who did not sleep all night to use the bathroom before prayer. After touching body parts that are normally covered, she can wash her hands with a berakha according to all opinions. This is the Ashkenazic custom.

In sum, according to Ashkenazic custom, one who did not sleep all night but is preparing to pray the Amida of Shaĥarit must use the bathroom before praying and subsequently wash netilat yadayim with a berakha. According to the Sephardic practice, even in this situation a woman does not recite the blessing after washing her hands (Kaf Ha-ĥayim 4:49; see below, 6:7 and 7:7, for the laws regarding Birkhot Ha-shaĥar and Birkhot Ha-Torah).

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Translated By:
Series Editor: Rabbi Elli Fischer

The Laws of Shabbat (1+2) - Yocheved Cohen
The Laws of Prayer - Atira Ote
The Laws of Women’s Prayer - Atira Ote
The Laws of Pesach - Joshua Wertheimer
The Laws of Zemanim - Moshe Lichtman

Editor: Nechama Unterman