Tuesday, May 24, 2022

The עבירה dance

 

                                   עבירה טאנץ

Five hundred years ago, the Minhag in Poland was for the wedding guests, especially the תלמידי חכמים and חשובים to dance holding hands with the כלה.

The היתר for this practice was given that it was done כדי לחבבה על בעלה so that her new husband would be proud to be marrying
a חשובע כלה and also מפני כבוד אביה - for the כבוד of her father.

There was no concern for the guests having illicit thoughts, being
it wasn't done as דרך חיבה (affection) and also because they were dancing in public, while others observed them.

The מהרש"ל   and others opposed this מנהג. They tried to abolish it.
They held this to be a מצוה הבא בעבירה. (Aveirah dance)
The מצוה לשמח חתן וכלה by holding hands of an אשת איש

About fifty years later, the ב"ח wrote that in his neighborhood this Minhag was still practiced. He didn't condemn it.  However, he did condemn this practice in those areas where there was no such Minhag.

Some would hold hands with the כלה but would have a kerchief
separating their hands so as not to have skin touching skin.

The תורת חיים writes that holding hands is אסור even when a kerchief is used between the hands.

                                       מצוה טאנץ
At a later date, dancing with the כלה without holding hands was introduced. The כלה would hold on to one corner of a kerchief and the guest to the other corner of the kerchief.

This dance finally became known as the Mitzvah Tanz, as opposed to the original Aveirah dance.

To accomplish כדי לחבבה על בעלה and מפני כבוד אביה, the תלמידי חכמים and חשובים danced with lots of concentration; hence we have today the Rebbes, etc, dancing with holy כוונות imitating the original concentration of dancing with the כלה.


Since there never was a problem of having the father and the grandfathers holding hands with the כלה, that was left intact as the original Minhag of holding hands with the כלה.


שו"ע אהע"ז כ"א:ה
פתחי תשובה אהע"ז ס"ה:ב

 

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