Now that we have learned the details of the obligation to recite a Bracha, we will now focus on the topic of Safek Brachos. What if one is in doubt as to whether or not he is obligated to make a Bracha? Is it better to refrain from reciting the Bracha (thereby possibly eating without a bracha) in order to prevent one from saying Hashem's name in vain, or is it better to say the bracha - but then possibly saying Hashem's name in vain
The general p’sak Halacha is that when in doubt, one does not recite a Bracha  - this is known as the klal of “Safek Brachos Lehakel.”  We discuss two possible reasons for this rule.  We learned that the chiyuv Brachos is mid’rabanan (besides for Birkas Hamazon, which is min Hatorah), and when one is in doubt regarding a chiyuv d’rabanan, the rule of “Safek D’rabanan L’ekula” applies.  Another possible reason is in order to prevent the mentioning of Hashem’s name in vain (if one recites a Bracha that he is not required to recite – i.e. a Bracha L’vatala), which constitutes a Lav Min Hatorah.
 If the reason for not reciting a Bracha when one is unsure is simply because of “Safek D’rabanan”, then one might think that while he is not required to make the Bracha, he still could if he wants to.  But if the second reason of saying Shem Hashem in vain applies, then he would not be permitted to, as that would be a Lav Min Hatorah.  
This question is discussed at length in our kuntress.

Booklet Details
Pages 49
Published 5784
Series Brochos

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ברכת הנהנין-ספק ברכות להקל

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