Hayim David HaLevi
Rabbi Hayim David HaLevi (24 January 1924 – 10 March 1998), also written Haim David ha-Levi, etc. (הרב חיים דוד הלוי), was Sephardi Chief Rabbi of Tel Aviv-Jaffa. He was born in Jerusalem and studied under Rabbi Ben-Zion Meir Hai Uziel at the Porat Yosef Yeshiva. When R. Uziel was appointed Sephardi Chief Rabbi of Israel, he hired R. HaLevi as his personal secretary and as a close student. He then served as the rabbi of various cities in Israel:
- Romema, Jerusalem.
- Served in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) during 1948 Arab-Israeli War
- Rishon Le-Zion (as Chief Rabbi of that city, 1951–1973)
- Israel's Chief Rabbinate Council (beginning in 1964)
- Tel Aviv-Jaffa (beginning in 1973, taking over from R. Ovadia Yosef).
R. HaLevi's books
- Mekor Hayim haShalem, a five-volume account of Jewish law and practice with reasons, in easy language.
- Kitzur Shulchan Arukh Mekor Hayim, a one-volume digest of the above code giving practical conclusions only.
- Aseh L'kha Rav, a collection of responsa.
- Dvar HaMishpat, a commentary on Maimonides's Hilchot Sanhedrin.
- Torat Hayim, 3 volumes of essays about the weekly parasha and the Jewish holydays.
- Mayim Hayim, responsa
- The life of Rabbi Ben Zion Meir Chai Uziel
R. HaLevi was known for his clear-headed approach to halakha, particularly those relating to the Jewish state. Though unquestionably tied to Sephardi minhag, liturgy and halakha, R. HaLevi also includes Ashkenazi halakhic positions and customs in his books and responsa. R. HaLevi seems to be the first Rabbi who published a Halachic prohibition of smoking.
- Encyclopaedia Judaica, "Halevi, Hayim David"
- Aseh L'khah Rav 1:23 on the lack of a clear commandment concerning conversion, "Halevi, Hayim David, translated in 2010 by Jeffrey A. Spitzer (Hebrew and English)
- Urim Publications: Rabbi Haim David Halevy - Gentle Scholar and Courageous Thinker