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18 Tevet 5765

Removing Shoes at the Kotel


Rabbi Elchanan Lewis

Question:
What is the source of the old Minhag of removing ones shoes at the Kotel and why did the practice fall into disuse?

Answer:
I did not hear of that old custom but that does not mean it did not exist.
I reckon it comes from the Halacha that one is not allowed to enter the temple mount with shoes as a sign of awe (Rambam Beit Habchira 7; 2), and the reason it is not common practice is because it is not temple mount but only the Kotel.


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