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Orthodox Judaism/Tzitziyot on One's Belt As An Alternative To A Tallit Katan

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QUESTION: Hi, David:

I have read of some who wear or even attach tzitziyot onto their beltloops as an alternative to wearing them on a tallit katan. Given that I observe the mitzvah of wearing tzitziyot and don't always have the choice as to whether or not I wear a tallit katan, would wearing a belt with tzitiyot on it be acceptable as an alternative? Please let me know. Toda!

ANSWER: Hi Nicole,

First you need to know that females that wear a tallis lose out more than they gain because of the prohibition against wearing male garments.

With regards to the mitzva of tzitis, the garment needs to be of a certain minimum size which is generally classified as covering the majority of the body and which has a difference of opinion of the precise measurement but a standard belt would not qualify.  In addition the fabric of the garment needs to be either wool, linen (but never a blend of the two) or at least cotton or a synthetic that is woven.  Leather is exempt.

Best regards,
David.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hi, David:

Without getting into a long discussion, weren't banot Yisra'el just as required as b'nei Yisra'el to weat tzitziyot in the days before the Talmud was codified? Also, some Orthodox women do wear tzitziyot. On that point and back to the original inquiry, would I be able to wear a belt with tzitziyot if I cannot wear a tallit katan for whatever reason?

Answer
Hi Nicole,

Sorry I missed your follow up.

The Talmud was not codified with NEW rules.  The Talmud is a record of rules as they were given to Moses.  Women are explicitly exempt from tzitzis, always.  The women wearing a talis may call themselves orthodox and may have an orthodox background but wearing the talis is a non-orthodox conduct.  They are doing so against relevant Torah authorities, they are going down the wrong path with disastrous consequences.  With regard to your belt, it would not qualify as a talis for several reasons, primarily because the minimum size of a talis is 18.9 x 18.9 inches.

Regards,
David.

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David Rosenblum

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I am an ex-student of yeshiva and I like to be presented with Torah study problems. If you have studied the Torah and have questions on the subject matter, I want to hear about it. I am not a Rabbi and not qualified to decide halachic issues. I am still interested in halachic questions for which I can sometimes offer general guidelines or present decisions in halachic works such as Mishna Berurah. I welcome questions from non-Jewish people but I cannot respond to religious references that are not part of Judaism. If you are working on a paper or doing research and want general information on a Jewish subject, I may or may not satisfy your need, depending on how comfortable I am with the question. If you have a personal problem, I am not qualified to help you but I will do what I can to offer you some assistance.

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