Posted on October 16, 2006 () By Rabbi Dr. Azriel Rosenfeld | Series: | Level:


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32. Nazirites – Nezirus

If one vows to be a nazirite he must let the hair of his head grow and is forbidden to cut it; he is also forbidden to drink anything containing wine or to eat grapes or raisins or to become impure through contact with a corpse, as it says [“If a man or woman makes the vow of a nazirite… he shall abstain from wine or strong drink; he shall not drink vinegar of wine or of strong drink and shall not drink anything obtained by soaking grapes and shall not eat wet or dry grapes; all the days that he is a nazirite he shall not eat anything made from the grapevine, from grapestones to grapeskins; all the days of his nazirite vow] no razor shall touch his head… he shall let the head of his hair grow; [all the days that he is a nazirite to Ha-Shem he shall not come near a dead person… he shall not become impure…].1,a

When the vow expires (if the Temple exists) the nazirite must bring three sacrifices and shave off his hair [as it says “On the day that his nazirite vow is fulfilled… the nazirite shall shave the hair of his head”]2; he is then no longer a nazirite. When the Temple does not exist all nazirites are perpetual.b One cannot be a nazirite for less than 30 days. If one becomes a perpetual nazirite he can cut his hair once a year (and when the Temple exists, must bring the three sacrifices at each such time).c If one’s hair is cut he must add 30 days to the time of his vow; if one comes into certain types of contact with a corpse he must shave off his hair and start from the beginning (and when the Temple exists, must bring three sacrifices), as it says [“And if he becomes impure… he must shave his head on the day that he becomes pure… and keep the days of his nazirite vow…] and the first days fall away”.3,d


Sources:

1. Num. 6:2-7 a. 1:1; see 5:1-2
2. Num. 6:13-20 b. 2:20; 4:12; 8:lff
3. Num. 6:9-12 c. 3:1,12
d. 6:1,3,11; 7:lff