Am I allowed to use old Seforim bookcases as storage shelves?



We moved into our new house. Leaving our old seforim bookcases. We need to clear out the old apartment now. I plan on putting out the bookcases on the street. Is it ok to take a few to my new basement and use them as storage shelves?



One may not use anything that was servicing holy items, called tashmish kedusha, for mundane purposes.

Seforim however usually stand in a bookcase with their covers, rendering the cover of the sefer a tashmish kedusha and the bookcase a tashmish d’tashmish and thus permissible for other uses.

Nonetheless, some poskim are worried about those seforim that are missing their cover, rendering the bookcase a direct tashmish kedusha. 

There is room to be lenient even in such a case, because it is quite usual for people to place various objects on the shelves of the bookcase, so it is as though they intended for it to be used for both holy and non-holy things. Still, it’s best to be machmir and never place things on the shelves.

An easy solution to your question is to “sell” the bookcase to another person, thereby “redeeming” it from its holy use. It may then be used for any usage.



בכלל, לפ״ז גם אין להניח דברי חול על המדפים בעודו בתשמישו. והעולם אין נזהרים. אלא שה״ז תשמיש דתשמיש, אם כי לפעמים יש ספר ללא כריכה, שחששו לזה מקצת פוסקים דלקמן. וראה משנ״ב קנד, ט. דע״ת שם. אמרי יושר א, מה. דובב מישרים ג, צב. חלקת יעקב א, מא. צי״א ז, ז. ארחות רבינו א ע׳ עז.

ואף שכך הוא הרגילות וכאילו התנה, בכ”ז יש להחמיר. וכדמצינו בכללות דין לב בית דין מתנה שכיון שנהגו הוי כהתנו, שכתבו להחמיר.