• Crown Heights Eruv May be Bad Idea

    After much speculation to that effect, reports on the existence of a new Eruv encircling the northern section of Crown Heights has emerged, leading many to wonder what is the Rebbe’s view on the matter. One answer from the Rebbe may shed some light on the topic • Full Story

    After much speculation to that effect, reports on the existence of a new Eruv encircling the northern section of Crown Heights emerged, leading many to wonder what is the Rebbe’s view on the matter.

    One answer from the Rebbe may shed some light on the matter. The answer is with regard to a prospective Eruv in Australia, circa 5740, and is found in a Tshura from the wedding of Binyomin and Chana Gordon, printed in the summer of 5773.

    The Choson’s father, R’ Yosef Yitzchok Gordon was a member of a committee tasked with erecting an Eruv that would cover a section of a residential area in Australia. The following is a loose translation of a verbal response from the Rebbe about the initiative, which was communicated through Mazkir R’ Leibel Groner:

    “My opinion is known that is this generation, a man or organization that is considered [regarded] by others, that erects an Eruv, and knows that ultimately that fact will be publicized — this is a grave stumbling block, because it’s impossible that there should not occur [at least] one Shabbos Kodesh when the Eruv will be Passul — and by nature when people get used to multiple times to carry on Shabbos Kodesh no notification or announcement that it’s Passul and prohibited [to carry] etc. will help that people avoid carrying.

    An Eruv should only be erected discreetly.”

    The Rebbe’s reasoning in the response clearly indicates that it isn’t to be limited to that episode in Australia in 5740, but rather should apply in all similar cases. More assuredly is the Rebbe’s beginning his response by declaring that his opinion on the matter is widely known.



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    1. the rebbe ofcoarse is 100% accurate of how difficult it would be in 5740 to ensure the erev is kosher. In Melbourne we are blessed with a very vigilant committee that painstakingly examines the erev throughout the week and bh nobody has been nichshol.True however being aware of the exact boundries of the erev is tricky and unfortunately a guest coming to town can err. The taanug of shabbos here in Melbourne is magnificent when parents can eat with children and grandchildren can share the parsha with Grandparents. Of coarse the laws pertainingg to use of eruv like the laws of taharas hamishpacha must be reviewed regularly.

      resident in melbourne
    2. Interesting to know if EVER even once just for a short time the eruv was not kosher?

      Perhaps a truck ripped it? or hooligans tore it? wind? rain?

      Still, many places don’t or can’t check it that well, or it isn’t built that well like in camp or bungalow colonies etc.

    3. First, let us get the story correct. I was not on any committee to make any Eiruv. I was a member of the first Kvutza of the Kollel in 5739. We had shiurim with hundreds of Baalai Batim. Many of the Baalai Batim were pressuring us to be constructive and make an Eiruv in the city. We approached Rabbi Y. D. Groner and he told that the Rebbe was against an Eiruv in a city. We pressed Rabbi Y D Groner to write to the Rebbe anyway. He wrote in and we received this answer.

      There was a time in Melbourne that the rabbanim announced that the Eiruv was Posul. I personally had the unfortunate experience to see dozens of Shomrei Shabbos carrying those weeks when the Eiruv was Posul. This is exactly what the Rebbe predicted. The Rebbe never suggested that an Eiruv cant be checked The Rebbe did say that once people get used to carrying no announcements or notification will help to prevent people from carrying.

      Yossi Gordon
    4. I, too, am a resident of Melbourne. I have heard teenagers who grew up here say “I’m allowed to carry, because I keep the Eruv” when they were, in fact very far from any Eruv. They think the issur of carrying on Shabbos is a chumra or minhag only kept by some people.
      In the Rebbe’s answer, he uses the expression “Takala Ayuma” (a dreadful stumbling block). The only other time that I’ve heard that Rebbe used such an expression was in connection to “Mi hu Yehudi”.

      Another Resident of Melbourne
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