Tuesday, December 21, 2004

A dip in the pool

Rabbi Yitzchak Abadi, a maverick posek who fields halachic questions on the web through his rabbi sons, has just fleshed out his thinking on whether a swimming pool can be a kosher mikveh. Some excerpts from son Rabbi Aaron Abadi's reply:

The basic idea is that piping does not render a Mikveh not Kosher these days, since our piping is attached to the house and/or ground.

There are however issues that need to be addressed. The water must have come from a river, a resevoir, an ocean, a lake, or anything other than "drawn water." If the first few hundred gallons come from a hose that comes from your home piping, that comes from the local water supply, then the pool is fine. The problem will be if it is initially filled by a tank truck, which in the present days is a common practice in order to fill it with pre-cleaned water and allow you to use the pool immediately, that would be a problem.

The fact that we do not use a regular swimming pool as a Kosher Mikveh for women is an added "chumra" (an extra restriction). It is not based in Jewish Law. The Ra"sh is very clear about it being Kosher (Hilchot Mikvaot #12). The Shulchan Aruch and the Ram"a are clear that it is fine (Yo"D 201:48). Even the Nodeh Beyehuda who is the strictest in this issue would agree that the pool is good in our scenario where the piping is attached to the house and/or the ground, since it is made to be attached that way.

The process that makes water not Kosher for a Mikveh is if the first waters contain water drawn by a "Keli." This would include a pail or a cup or a tank. It would not include piping that is attached to the ground.

But there are some other issues....

As usual, consult your own rabbi for practical halachic advice. Rabbi Abadi's positions are often controversial, to say the least.

1 comment:

Jake Richter said...

your statement "Rabbi Abadi's positions are often controversial, to say the least." seems unfounded and irrelevant. If Rabbi Abadi is a competent posek, which he is "to say the least" (and I say this from personal experience and on good authority from others), then you more then safely do what he says. And if not then you better ask someone that is. "Controversial" is not a relevant issue in regards to halacha.