Left: Rabbi Berel Levin. Right: Rabbi Eli Landa.

‘Great Talis Debate’ Rages in Lubavitch

“There’s a great debate raging in Lubavitch these days, and Boruch Hashem, it’s not about shidduchim, tuition costs, Meshichism, or shluchim’s territorial claims,” writes blogger Hirshel Tzig. Rather, the debate in question is over the proper way to put on one’s Talis according to Chabad custom.

From Hirshel Tzig’s Blog:

Truth be told, neither Reb Berel Levin nor Reb Eli Landa refers to the other person’s manner of atifas Talis as “wrong” or incorrect, so the debate may be the creation of this blog… But controversy is what drives this business, and there ultimately is a debate, even if they don’t argue with each other.

For good measure, after seeing a “related” video on You Tube, we bring you Rabbi Nissan Dovid Dubov’s version, which is basically the same as RSBL.

I tried to embed the code from the Levin shiur here as well, but it just wouldn’t show. So all we have is a link.

You can sense that REL will have a different take on atifah just based on the beginning, where he rolls out the Chabad מיוחד – רש”ב tallis, that the Rebbe wore during Tishrei only.

Levin and Dubov use the more standard tallis, and hence the more standard סדר העטיפה.

Landa’s atifah is difficult to do, but the end result is EXACTLY what an Ishmaeli in the desert would look like. What they all have in common is that atifas haTallis in Chabad is not as easy as in the rest of the Jewish world.

The אלטער רבי, בעל התניא והשלחן ערוך, was very specific about atifas haTallis, just as he was with all other aspects of Jewish law and observance.

You also learn something from RSBL about keeping the head covered with the tallis at all times; that the only way to be מקיים atifah is by having the head covered. Otherwise it’s just a large tallis koton that you’re wearing.

Link: Rabbi Shlom Ber Levin’s shiur on atifas haTallis.


  • All 3 are different

    Dubov and Landa dont agree with when you make the brocho with Landa saying it before he puts on the Talis and Dubov saying it once the head is covered by the Talis. Additionaly, Dubov merely flips the corners over his left shoulder while Landa pulls the talis all the way across his back until is covers the right shoulder as well. It should be noted, in the back of the the new kehos Tehilas hashem siddur the illustration agrees with Dubov’s method.

  • Izzy

    Intresting that no one talks about the tzizit should be “makay al hakanaf” like its written in the end of shulchan aruch harav chelek 1.

  • boky bsa

    according the the ryatz the actual strings should be facing your heart,not as rabbi dubov had it on the right side

  • Tishrei only?

    Chabad מיוחד – רש”ב tallis, that the Rebbe wore during Tishrei only?!?

  • Cholent Mit Kugel

    Next…..how many slices of potato kugel per Shabbos meal. Waiting for our holy Beis Din to decide….

  • Thank you.

    I honestly was never tought how to properly put on my Tallis and I appreciate this article. Please post more of this kind.

  • ???...

    To #6:
    Why would you say that. The Rebbe wore that type of Tallis throughout the year.

  • What About.....

    …. covering the eyes (but not the mouth) as it says in Sefer Haminhogim?

  • Rabbi A

    wow.very interesting. i must say rabbi landau’s demonstration looks very much like atifas yishmiailim. more then what i do.

  • סידור אדה"ז

    “ונמצאו כל הד׳ ציציות מצד שמאל, שתים לפניו ושתים לאחוריו” נדפס בסידור קה”ת

  • maybe

    maybe we can ask one of the secretaries how the Rebbe did it
    I’m sure they saw the Rebbe putting THE TALIS ON SOME OCCASION

  • to cholent mit kugel

    Ruchniusdikeh details are meaningful in yiddishkeit, Why belittle this fact in such an unbecoming way?