Modern technology and the wide ranging varieties of foods have brought confusion to the subject of brachos, which in any case is extremely complex and deep. Many laws depend upon the proportion of ingredients, common eating practices in each individual country, and many other factors. The present volume deals with all that is connected to a bread meal, taking the reader step by step from the washing of the hands until the end of bensching.
The enormous importance of this topic is evident from a statement by the Sages: «Whoever partakes of food without reciting a b’racha commits sacrilege (since he benefits from Hashem’s world without permission). What should he do? He must first go to a teacher and study the laws of brachos in order not to perpetrate such a transgression» (Brachos 35a). Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach zt»I added the following comment: «The words ‘he must first go’ imply that before any other subject, a person must learn the laws of brachos. Indeed it is for this reason that the Talmud begins with Tractate Brachos, since this is the foundation of everything» (Tzohar 5760).
The rulings in this book are based upon the decisions of the Chofetz Chaim, ztl, as found in his classic work Mishna Brura Rarely will a written work be a perfect substitute for a one-to-one discussion with a rav.