Q. One who is undecided if to go ahead with a proposed shiduch and choose a marriage partner, and is emotionally very affected by the uncertainty and doubt. Is it recommended or even permissible to follow the
Goral of the Vilna Gaon? What is exactly the procedure?
A. (See question above) Shulchan Aruch (Y.D. 179:1) rules that one may not consult stargazers or perform goralos. Following the Ramban, the Rema explains that this prohibition is based on the instruction of tamim tihiyeh—rather than on the negative commandments of nichush and me’onen.
Malbim (Hatorah Vehamitzvah, 66) writes that the mitzva of wholeheartedness with Hashem relates to all forms of future-telling, “even to those forms that are not prohibited.” It obligates us to rely on Hashem, and not to live our lives according to the recommendations of fortune-tellers and soothsayers—even those whose practice does not violate any prohibition.
Horav Shlomo Miller’s Shlit’a opinion is that in our times, one should abstain completely from using any kind of goral or casting of lots to divine the future or to choose a course of action, including the Goral Ha-Gra.
The Rov maintains that the Goral Ha-Gra. should only be used when a human life depends on it and by a Tzadik that is familiar with it.
Rabbi A. Bartfeld as revised by Horav Shlomo Miller Shlit’a