I am a Baal T’shuvah, with very little Jewish family history. My question regards which tying custom to follow. The one thing I do know is that I wish to follow the Raavad for ratio. I know my family lived in Vienna for a time, which would lead me to the Vilna Gaon, but I’m not sure. My current custom is to tie 7-8-11-13. I was wondering if there was a timeline of when the different customs were written, and which, if any, are considered older than others. Thank you very much

I am a Baal T'shuvah, with very little Jewish family history. My question regards which tying custom to follow. The one thing I do know is that I wish to follow the Raavad for ratio. I know my family lived in Vienna for a time, which would lead me to the Vilna Gaon, but I'm not sure. My current custom is to tie 7-8-11-13. I was wondering if there was a timeline of when the different customs were written, and which, if any, are considered older than others. Thank you very much

I would say that if you are inclined to follow the Ravad method in terms of ratio (1 full blue string per corner) then I would advise you tie like the Vilna Gaon, as he too holds that one should use 1 full blue string per corner.

As for the oldest methods, it appears that the Gaonim held the oldest tradition, either R. Amram Gaon (d.875) or R. c (d. 1034). The only difference between the Vilna Gaon’s method and that of Rav Amram Gaon is the introduction of the 5 knots.

In any case, though we do try to follow the traditions of our fathers as much as possible, since tekhelet has been lost for 1300 years, no one has a family tradition and therefore the field is a bit more open than usual to choose form.

– Mois Navon.

Mois Navon.

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