Thursday, May 10, 2012

Judge M. Elon: Harchakos are passive sanctions

Justice Menachem Elon (Status of Women page 349): The parameters of the harchokos of Rabbeinu Tam are accurately described by Ariel Rozen-Tzvi: “The sanction of harchokos - whose source is in the teshuvos of Rabbeinu Tam – is separation, distancing and withholding. In other words, they are passive activities involving not doing something (shev v’ahl ta’aseh). In contrast kefiya (force) and also nidoi (shunning) require active steps. According to Rabbeinu Tam the harchokos are not considered force. Rabbeinu Tam chose an indirect path in circumstances where beis din preferred to avoid force. The harchokos are a withholding of the benefits of society. It is directed to the actions of the community and not the husband. Many other poskim followed in the footsteps of Rabbeinu Tam. However there were other poskim who viewed the haricots as also a type of force and therefore they should only be applied when force is permitted.”

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