(c) 2000 Dr Hendel; 1st appeared in Torah Forum (c) Project Genesis

Date: Tue, 29 Dec 1998 12:43:45 -0500
From: rhendel@mcs.drexel.edu (Russell Hendel)
Subject: Re: Lying

Joshua Ksos and Herb Lubars, in Torah Forum, Volume 1, Number 44, raise the
issue of when one can lie (such as lying to bring peace among people).
There are actually 4 times when one should lie. The halachic source for
them is obscure--it occurs in Rambam, Theft and Loss, Chapter 14, at the end.

The 4 cases are
a) PEACE: You can lie to bring peace between two people
b) PRIVACY: You can lie about which bed you slept in
c) HOSTS: You can lie about who your host was (if your goal is to prevent
other people from taking advantage of his hospitality)
d) LEARNING: You can lie about what tractate you are learning (if your goal
is to prevent people asking you questions about matters you are not certain

Lack of lying in all but these 4 areas is a prerequisite for being
classified as a scholar (which entitles you to be believed if you claim you
recognize a lost object without a visible sign as your own).

Russell Jay Hendel; Phd ASA
RHendel @ mcs drexel edu