[Video below.] Ahead of Yom Kippur, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Israel last week launched its annual information campaign against kapparos with chickens. That campaign just received a boost from an unexpected source, as one of religious Zionism’s most influential rabbis joined the call against the practice of kapparos with chickens.
Shlomo Aviner, head of Yerushalayim’s Ateret Yeshiva and rabbi of the settlement of Beit El, has spoken out in the past against the contentious rite. This time, however, he acceded to the SPCA’s request and issued a religious ruling that, rather than slaughtering an animal, giving money to the poor is a better method of doing kapparos.
“Because this is not a binding obligation but a custom, in light of problems related to kashrut and the suffering of animals, and given the edicts of the aforementioned rabbis, a recommendation must be made to favor performing kaparot through money, by performing the great mitzvah of providing for the needy,” Aviner wrote, citing religious decrees by rabbinical authorities from various periods throughout Jewish history.
Click below to watch remarks from Rabbi Aviner:
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