Arizal: Ashkenazim Should Follow The Way Of Ashkenaz – האריז”ל: אשכנזים ינהגו כמנהג אשכנז

Today, ה’ אב, is the 444th yohrzeit (יום השנה) of the renowned Arizal (מדת האר”י), one of the most influential figures in the Jewish world in recent centuries.

The Ari z”l was born to a Sepharadic mother and an Ashkenazic father. His father passed away when he was eight years old, however, and he grew up in a Sepharadic environment. To give some perspective timewise, he lived about two hundred years before the modern Chasidic movement of Eastern Europe, which views itself as connected to and influenced by him. One prominent way in which this relationship is seen, is with regard to נוסח התפלה, with almost all Chasidim having adopted a new nusach, referred to by some as nusach Sfard, and by others as nusach Ari.

Interestingly enough, however, the Arizal himself, hundreds of years ago, is recorded as having regularly stated that people should stick to their ancestral customs, and that Ashkenazim should stick to מנהג אשכנז.

That teaching of the אר”י is brought by the של”ה in sefer דרך חיים on the words איש על דגלו באותות לבית אבותם in במדבר ב:ב.

A good thing to know. The Arizal respected the way of Ashkenaz.

ובזכות הליכה בדרכי אבותינו ורבותינו הקדושים, יה”ר שנזכה לילך בפעמי אבותינו בארץ קדשנו, בדרך העולה בית א-ל, בנחמת ציון וירושלים בב”א

א גוטען חודש

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4 Responses to “Arizal: Ashkenazim Should Follow The Way Of Ashkenaz – האריז”ל: אשכנזים ינהגו כמנהג אשכנז”

  1. r.b. Says:

    Interesting. Here he says there are four groups in klal yisrael (Sfarad, Ashkenaz, Katalonia, Italia). The Magen Avraham in OC siman 68 (he is brought in the Mishna Brurah there also) says something similar from the Arizal that there are twelve gates in shamayim corresponding to the twelve shvatim and each shevet has its own set of minhagim.

    • Treasures of Ashkenaz Says:

      Yes, thanks.

      I think that the citation you bring is is much more known among the המון עם than the one linked to in the post.

      The feeling here was that the words of the של”ה from the אר”י ז”ל were worthy of highlighting, however, for a few reasons.

      1) It is phrased positively. Each person should stay by their flag, their mesorah.

      2) It sounds more contemporary. Instead of talking about twelve שבטים, most of which were lost to us so long ago, it speaks of more contemporary categories.

      3) It uses the words “האר”י ז”ל היה אומר”, which imply that it was not something he just said once (as מפרשים comment on when it says in Pirkei Avos הוא היה אומר) , but rather something that he used to say, multiple times, perhaps with some regularity.

      4) It is lesser known, and worthy of attention.

  2. Reb Chaim HaQoton Says:

    The link is broken. It’s supposed to be: http://hebrewbooks.org/pdfpager.aspx?req=30608&st=&pgnum=89

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