Rav Shteinman Hasn’t Eaten Bread During the Week in 70 Years


aharon-leib-shteinman-3There is a book being published by Rav Shlomo Levenshtein, a renowned maggid, and it is laced with anecdotes displaying love and dedication, and mesirus nefesh, for Torah and mitzvos. In one story it is related that Rav Aharon Leib Shteinman shlita said to one of his confidantes that on Shabbos, when bentching, one is required to add the paragraph of Retzei. If one forgot to say it, he would have to repeat the bentching. If he is unsure of he said it or not, he would also be required to repeat the bentching, because we would assume that he said the most common bentching he is familiar with, which is the weekday version not including Retzei, meaning we would assume he skipped it and therefore he must repeat bentching.Rav Shteinman continued that the question therefore is regarding me, because I never eat bread during the week, so my regular bentching is one that includes Retzei. Thus, if on Shabbos I would bentch and I would be unsure whether or not I said Retzei, would the decision be any different?

Realizing that the question was not really relevant, one of the people present asked Rav Shteinman, “How long has it been since the rosh yeshiva has not eaten bread during the week?”

Rav Shteinman’s answer: “70 years.”

70 years!

Similarly, it is known that the rosh yeshiva only drinks hot water unflavored with tea, as drinking water flavored with tea is considered by him to be filling a desire. He would say, “Why do I need to drink hot water that is colored brown?”

One time, a doctor said to him that tea is good for his health, as it contains healthy nutrients. The doctor recommended that he begin drinking tea. Rav Shteinman agreed to drink a cup of tea. When he was about to drink the tea, he changed his mind and said, “For 90 years I have been fine without tea. Right now I have to start with new desires?”

And he did not drink the tea.

How fortunate we are to have gedolei Torah v’avodah like Rav Shteinman in our very midst.

{Rafi Goldmeir-LifeInIsrael Blog, Yair Alpert-Matzav.com Israel}


  1. to THE MIR.
    1)you have a pesak of daas Torah that it is NOT the wrong message.who are you to argue.?
    2)he must be taking care of himself , he lasted all these years.blee ayen horah

  2. Does this mean he does’nt eat bread for melava malkah? What about Seudat Mitzvah like a siyum or Brit Mila or Sheva Berachot?
    Just wondering can we trust EVERY story we hear in the name of our Gedollim?????