Friday, July 27, 2018

PAY THE PIPER


PAY THE PIPER

Part of the מצוה טאנץ ceremony is, to hire a בדחן, who sings in rhyme the praises of the individuals he calls up for the dance. 
The person who was called up will hand over a monetary tip to the בדחן before he does his dance.

The origin of this מנהג goes back to the times of the ראשונים. The Minhag was for the חזן to attend weddings and sing a מי שברך for each guest. It was expected from the guest to pay the חזן. 

The אגדות מהרש"א (Ta’anis 16 ד"ה ביתו) is very much against this practice. He considers it גזילה and not a מתנה. (The guest never asked for a מי שברך, and must hand over money unwillingly to the חזן)

Going back even earlier in history, ר' יהודה החסיד was also against the practice. The  (אור זרוע (קי"ג quotes R. Eliezer Mi’bhim (Bohemia) who wrote to ר' יהודה החסיד defending this מנהג. He claims in most towns in Poland, Russia, and Hungary they are not לומדי תורה. It is necessary to hire a חזן to be their שליח ציבור & מורה צדק and to teach the children. By not allowing them to earn additional monies at the Chasenes we won’t find חזנים to do this job.



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