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New Kitniyot Survey Reveals Big Changes in Approach to "Little Things"

It’s been 10 years since the Great Kitniyot Rebellion of 2007 when Rav David Bar-Hayyim issued his famous (or infamous) psak halacha that permitted Ashkenazim to eat kitniyot during Pesach.
 
Back then, most people were so preoccupied with the removal of kitniyot that the removal of chametz almost seemed like an afterthought. But as the Rav explained, kitniyot are the little things & we need to focus on the bigger issues.

Over the last 10 years, many people have talked, written or blogged about eating kitniyot—or not eating them. Even the Reform and Conservative Movements have hopped on the kitniyot bandwagon. But until now, everyone has only cited anecdotal evidence.  

In honor of the 10th anniversary of the Great Kitniyot Rebellion, Machon Shilo created an online survey (in English) about Pesach customs and kitniyot. Circulated via Facebook and popular Israel-based email lists, the survey was answered by nearly 150 people.

While we can't claim that the sample is statistically valid at this stage, the survey has nevertheless revealed some very interesting trends:
  • 30% of respondents who eat kitniyot derivatives have been doing it for less than 5 years.
  • 25% of respondents who eat kitniyot have been doing it for less than 5 years.
  • 35% of people who have changed their customs were influenced by Machon Shilo
Nearly 300 years before Rav Bar-Hayyim and Machon Shilo, the great Hacham Zvi Hirsch Ashkenazi, the rabbi of Amsterdam (1660-1718), unsuccessfully tried to annul the kitniyot prohibition. He wrote that:

“He who does away with this practice, may my part be with him; would that the great authorities of this generation in this region agreed with me to carry out this great mitzva.”

Kudos to Rav Bar-Hayyim and Machon Shilo!


Take the survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VPT5RGD or see the interim results below.













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