Dirshu Edition Of Mishna Berurah Chelek Gimel Revolutionizes The Learning Of Hilchos Shabbos


hofstedter-dirshu-rav-shetinman“This is not my first time learning hilchos Shabbos. But the Dirshu Mishnah Berurah and the critically important additions that have been added in the Biurim U’Musafim section have enhanced my understanding of the Mishnah Berurah, the background of the halachos, and the way that the halachos apply today, in an amazing way.” -A Lakewood talmid chachamThe Dirshu Mishnah Berurah has been on the shelves for just over a month yet the tremendous effect that it has on the learning and understanding of hilchos Shabbos has been hailed and underscored by thousands.

Dirshu’s Chelek Gimel of Mishnah Berurah was released this past Rosh Chodesh Elul in conjunction with the beginning of hilchos Shabbos in the Dirshu “Halachah L’Bais Yisroel” Mishnah Berurah program. In the more than two years since its inception, Halachah L’Bais Yisroel has become one of Dirshu’s most popular programs and its thousands of participants have attested to the profound change in their lives since they began learning the daily Mishnah Berurah.

Mastering Hilchos Shabbos Made Possible

As Halachah L’Bais Yisroel began hilchos Shabbos, it has taken on an even greater significance and dimension. Hilchos Shabbos are among the most difficult, complex halachos. Rav Yonason Eibushitz writes that it is impossible for a person not to transgress the laws of Shabbos unless he learns them thoroughly.

Every ehrliche Yid, every G-d-fearing Jew, truly wants to properly observe Shabbos and know and understand the halachos. Unfortunately, the complexity of the halachos combined with the fact that the halachos often have to be applied to modern day scenarios have made learning the Mishnah Berurah on hilchos Shabbos particularly difficult.

Dirshu left no stone unturned to ensure a most appealing, complete sefer that would empower the dedicated learner with the tools to gain insight and understanding into the multifaceted halachos contained within the Mishnah Berurah.

Biurim U’musafim: Completing The Picture

Two entire kollelim comprised of talmidei chachamim who are experts in hilchos Shabbos were established for the express purpose of compiling the “Biurim U’Musafim” section accompanying every page of the Mishnah Berurah. One was headed by one of the gedolei horaah in Eretz Yisrael, Hagaon Harav Nosson Kopschitz, shlita, rav of the Kehillas Hacharedim of Beit Shemesh. The purpose of the copious, voluminous research done especially for this chelek was to give those learning Mishnah Berurah the most comprehensive picture possible of all the material pertaining to the applicable halachos.

Cross-Referencing Through Musafim

The Biurim U’Musafim section really performs four different functions.

Firstly the “Musafim” component adds the Mishnah Berurah’s own additional words and rulings culled from other areas on the subject at hand. For example, if the Mishnah Berurah, when expounding on the laws of bishul-cooking on Shabbos-discusses one topic at length and in a different section discusses the same topic in a shorter, less elaborate way, the Dirshu edition will bring the Mishnah Berurah’s words from the other location. This frequently sheds light on the halachic ruling and enables the learner to see how the Chofetz Chaim himself ruled on the same matter in a different place.

Halachic Rulings And Their Backgrounds: In One Place

The second component is that of the Biurim. Often, in the main body of the Mishnah Berurah the Chofetz Chaim only writes the actual psak halachah, without giving the reasons for that ruling. It is not uncommon, however, for the Chofetz Chaim to elaborate on the reasons in his commentaries, Shaar Hatziyun and Biur Halachah. Additionally, these commentaries present halachic rulings not contained in the Mishnah Berurah which shed insight on the topic at hand. In a wonderfully cogent, concise manner, the Biurim part of the Dirshu Mishnah Berurah cites these rulings, thereby affording the learner a quick, comprehensive listing of related halachic rulings and explanations as ruled by the Chofetz Chaim himself in his other sefarim.

Likutei Teshuvos: Current Rulings Concurrently

Perhaps the most exciting component of the new Dirshu Mishnah Berurah is the “Likutei Teshuvos” part of the Biurim U’Musafim section. The Chofetz Chaim completed the Mishnah Berurah in 1907. Over the past century, technological advances and countless questions relevant to today’s lifestyles have arisen. This is especially true with regard to the halachos of Shabbos, where the constantly evolving technology has engendered thousands of new halachic questions and rulings. All of these rulings are of course rooted in the original words of the Shulchan Aruch and poskim. The Dirshu edition of the Mishnah Berurah brings thousands of rulings from the gedolei haposkim of the last generation as well as from contemporary poskim, each in its proper place in the Mishnah Berurah. The learner is therefore enabled to learn not only the words of the Mishnah Berurah but also to know and understand the rulings of the great poskim on thousands of modern practical questions while simultaneously understanding how these modern day rulings have their source in the original words of the Shulchan Aruch and Mishnah Berurah!

The rulings included in the Dirshu Mishnah Berurah are from such revered poskim as Hagaonim Rav Chaim Ozer Grodzensky, the Chebiner Rov, Rav Moshe Feinstein, Rav Yaakov Kamenetzky, the Steipler Gaon, Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach, and even our current poskim, ybl’ch, Hagaonim Rav Yosef Sholom Elyashiv, Rav Shmuel Wosner, Rav Chaim Kanievsky, and Rav Nissim Karelitz. In addition, all of the Chazon Ish’s rulings that pertain to the words of the Mishnah Berurah are brought in the Dirshu Mishnah Berurah.

Another integral component in Dirshu’s Mishnah Berurah comes from the personal sifrei Mishnah Berurah provided to Dirshu by many of the gedolei hador with handwritten notes in the margins. These notes of Hagaonim Rav Dov Landau, rosh yeshiva of Slabodka, Rav Yehoshua Neuwirth, author of the Shemiras Shabbos K’hilchasa, Rav Yehuda Aryeh Dunner, and Rav Simcha Bunim Waldenberg were all incorporated.

Rav Aharon Leib Shteinman And Rav Michel Yehuda Lefkowitz Hail Dirshu Mishnah Berurah

It is therefore no wonder that when the nasi of Dirshu, Rav Dovid Hofstedter, brought a copy of the new Chelek Gimel to the gedolei hador, Rav Aharon Leib Shteinman, Rav Shmuel Wosner, Rav Michel Yehuda Lefkowitz, the Gerer Rebbe, and Rav Gershon Edelstein all, in their own way, were amazed at the ‘kankan chadash, mallei Yashan’-the new creation that will open the eyes of the contemporary learner to the timeless halachos of Shabbos. They expressed their deepest admiration for the amazing creation of Chelek Gimel of the Dirshu Mishnah Berurah.

Indeed, the Dirshu Mishnah Berurah has become so popular that its widespread use is by no means limited to Dirshu Halachah L’Bais Yisroel participants. The new Mishnah Berurah, with its special Biurim U’Musafim section, has become an invaluable learning aid for anyone wanting to seriously learn halachah l’maaseh to gain a working knowledge of contemporary halachah.

The Chazon Ish (Igeres Chazon Ish-41) wrote, “The rulings of the Mishnah Berurah are akin to rulings by the Sanhedrin in the Lishkas Hagazis.”

Dirshu, through its editions of the Mishnah Berurah, has just enriched that unique access to the Sanhedrin in the Lishkas Hagazis.

{Chaim Gold-Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. Great job. Apart from the listing of new Tshuvos, it almost sounds like they are remaking the Mishna Brura into the style of the Aruch Hashulchan?


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