A Daf A Day (daf yomi)

A daf yomi blog for discussion, questions and comments on the daily daf.

Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Mevatel D'rabonnon l'chatchila? (Shabbos 29a)

Rashi (d"h marbe) says that when you add pre-cut wood to the fire with wood that fell on Shabbos it is ok because you are mevatel the muktza wood b'rov. Isn't that a problem of being mevatel isur l'chatchila? The Rashba asks another question: How can it be batel if it's still nikar b'shas tashmisho? The Rashba therefore has a different explanation of the gemara. By adding more wood, you make it doesn't look like you're moving muktza and you're really just being metaltel min hatzad. I think he's saying that tiltul min hatzad alone would not be enough. Even though that alone takes off the isur muktze we're still worried about other people seeing. Therefore the gemara says you need rov so that people won't see the muktze.

The Mossad Harav Kook edition points you to the Rashba in beitza on daf 4b. There, the Rashba says basically like Rashi here except that he says you can only be mevatel it b'rov l'chatchila as long as you can't see the muktza wood. He says that the normal rules of bitul don't apply to d'rabonnons "d'ein lahen ikar b'doraysa klal." The MHK there says that the Rambam implies that the regular rules of bitul don't apply to any d'rabonnons.

Monday, May 30, 2005

Pigskin for tefillin shel yad (Shabbos 28b)

The gemara says that we know you can't use non-kosher animal skin for tefillin because the shin of the tefillin is a halacha l'Moshe m'Sinai so we learn from mutar b'phicha. R' Akiva Eiger asks that this only proves tefilin shel rosh but how do you know about tefilin shel yad. The Rashash answers that there is a hekesh between tefilin shel yad and shel rosh so if the halacha is true by one then it must be true by the other. The Rashash says that this is actually a machlokes tanaim between R' Meir and R' Yehuda in Makos daf 11 if you can learn a hekesh to apply dinim that are halacha l'Moshe M'Sinai.

That seems like a good answer so why didn't R' Akiva Eiger like it? It could be that he questions the entire hekesh from tefilin shel yad to tefilin shel rosh. I don't think the gemara uses this to learn halachos one from the other. It could be that the only time R' Meir and R' Yehuda have their machlokes is if the hekesh applies in dinim d'oraysa so the question is will it also apply to halachos l'Moshe m'sinai or not. However, here the hekesh is not teaching us to learn halachos out one from the other just that as long as you're wearing tefilin shel rosh then you must be wearing tefilin shel yad also. If so then that would have no ramifications on the halacha l'Moshe m'Sinai so R' Akiva Eiger's question remains.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Rashi d"h k'man (Shabbos 27b)

Rashi seems to have two pshatim here in the gemara. The second pshat seems simple to me. The gemara is asking which Tana does Abaye go like. He's understand R' Eliezer ben Shimon to mean any pishtan even if it's not a beged. The gemara is questioning how the amora Abaye could understand the tana that way. Is there any other tana who holds like that? The gemara then answers that R' Yehuda holds like that.

However, before that pshat, Rashi seems to have another pshat which I don't understand. The gemara is asking k'man on the Tana Sumchus? And it concludes that it's like R' Meir? First of all, why does Sumchus need another tana supporting him? Second of all, how is it like R' Meir? Or am I misunderstanding something in that Rashi?

Friday, May 27, 2005

Misa bidei shamayim by truma (Shabbos 25a)

The gemara says that one of the chumros for Truma over kodshim is that it has misa bidei shamayim. Why is this a chumra - Kodshim has kares? Rashi says that kares is early death and no children while misa bidei shamayim is only early death so how is this a chumra? Rashi seems to be trying to answer this question because he says in the explanation of misa that a zar who eats truma is chayav misa while a zar who eats kodshim is not. That is a chumra but isn't that already listed as of the chumros -asura l'zarim?

Thursday, May 26, 2005

light at both entrances because of Cheshad (Shabbos 23a)

The gemara says that if a house has two entrances on two different sides, one must light at both entrances because of Cheshad. The Korban Nesanel asks that the halacha is - if it went out, he does not have to relight it (Kahvsa ain zakook lah). But why is this, he should need to relight it because of Cheshad?

The Korban Nesanel answers that the halacha of lighting at both entrances is needed mainly for lighting on Friday night. If a passerby does not see lights at the second entrance, he will suspect the owner of not lighting. But on weekdays, if he does not see lights, he will think that the light probably went out and the owner brought the menorah inside. Therefore the Chachamim made it a requirement to light at both entrances in order to take care of the problem of Cheshad on Friday night.

A simple answer could be that if the light goes out, a person needs to keep his menorah outside to avoid Cheshad, just he does not need to relight it. A problem with this answer is that if it is dark, perhaps people cannot see his menorah, so there would still be Cheshad.

Does anyone know of any other sefer that discusses this question.

Magen Avos on Yom Tov night (Shabbos 24b)

Rashi (d"h mishum) says that the Rabonnon were mesaken Magen Avos on Shabbos because of the sakana. They wanted to give the latecomers a chance to catch up so everyone could leave shul together so they added the tefila. However, during the week most people just davened at home after work so there was no need for the takana. There also was no takana made on yom tov but Rashi doesn't explain why.

The Sfas Emes says that it could be there was no takana because everyone was in shul on time on yom tov night because they never started early. On Friday night they were often mekabel Shabbos early but they didn't do that on yom tov. I was thinking that it could be that people were in shul on time not just because it started late but because people spend weeks preparing for yom tov and by the time it starts people are ready and are in shul on time. Whereas Shabbos has become a routine and people don't take it as seriously so they often come late.

Or the answer could be the opposite. It could be that yom tov was more like chol in that people didn't come. He quotes Tosafos in Taanis on 2b who (in talking about something else entirely) quotes the Yerushalmi that says that not everyone is in shul on yom tov night. If that's true then there would be no need for the takana just like chol. He doesn't explain why but last night someone suggested this answer (we hadn't yet seen the Sfas Emes) and he said that nowadays it's true. On Friday, people have it in their schedules to leave work early so it's easy to get to shul on time. On Erev yom tov it's often harder to get off from work early. You're about to take off two days in the middle of the week and to leave early the day before is hard. So maybe that's why the takana wasn't made.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Ner Chanuka over kiddush (Shabbos 23b)

The gemara says that if you can only do ner Chanuka or Kiddush on Friday night then you should light Chanuka candles. Someone asked this morning how could ner chanuka take precedence over kiddush which is a d'oraysa.

The Ran answers that the case must be that you also have bread and that works m'doraysa. The gemara had the hava amina that even though you're yotzei the mitzva it's still better to make kiddush on wine so that would take precedence over Chanuka but the gemara answers that pirsumei nisa adif.

The Ritva says even if you had no bread, you were yotzei your mitzva d'oraysa in shul.

The Hagaos Ashri argues and says that our gemara must hold that you can't make kiddush on bread otherwise ner Chanuka wouldn't take precedence.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Ahf Hen Hayu Beosei Haneis (23A)

Rashi says that women were included in the neis because of the gezeira of tibael lehagmon techila and since they played a role in defeating the enemy. This begs the question, what was the primary nes, that men were included in and not women? It would seem that the Ikar nes was being saved from the gezeira of not keeping Shabbos, Rosh Chodesh and Bris Mila, as well as defeating the Yevanim (besides the neis of the Shemen). Women were included in the Geziera of Shmad regarding Shabbos, as well as Rosh Chodesh ( and were equally affected by the neis of the Shemen), even if they were not affected by the Gezeira of Bris Mila and were not directly involved in the battle. Why does Rashi feel compelled to introduce seemingly secondary aspects of the neis, even if they are unique to women?

Hanacha Oseh Mitzva (Shabbos 22b-23a)

The gemara says that if you say hanacha oseh mitzva then if you have a lantern that was lit from Erev Shabbos and it stays lit until Motzei Shabbos then you would have to put it out, pick it up, put it back and then light it. Someone asked this morning: what exactly is required for hanacha oseh mitzva? Do you have to pick up the menora each night before you light it? If so then why shouldn't you have to pick it up and put it back after it's lit?

There is a machlokes between Rashi and Tosafos in this case why the lantern was lit on Erev Shabbos. Rashi says it was for Chanuka and Tosafos says it was for Shabbos. I saw this morning (I think it was in the Sfas Emes) that according to Tosafos the questions aren't so bad. As long as the menora was initially put there for the mitzva of Chanuka then that suffices for hanacha oseh mitzva once the menora is lit. However this case is where it was lit for Shabbos so you need a hanacha (even if it's before the candles are lit) which is l'shem neiros Chanuka. According to Rashi though the question remains. It seems that according to him, if you light the candles on Friday night and they go out that night then Motzei Shabbos you can just relight them without moving the menorah even though hanacha oseh mitzva. If the candles stayed lit though until you were ready to light on Motzei Shabbos then you must pick up the menorah to show that the hanacha is for the mitzva.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Wax candles (Shabbos 20b)

The Mishna lists a bunch of things that can't be used as wicks and then a bunch of things that can't be used as fuel. Included in the latter list is wax. Yet that doesn't stop most people from using wax candles on Shabbos and the Shulchan Aruch paskens that there is no problem with the practice. So how does that jive with our Mishna?

Rashi (d"h shaava itztricha lei) at the bottom of the amud answers the question that the only time wax is forbidden is if it's used like oil. However, our candles are all stuck around the wick so it's like one big wax wick. The truth is that I didn't realize that was what Rashi was saying until I saw the Rashba quote the Rashi. It seems that almost all the Rishonim understand our Gemara this way and therefore one may even use wax candles l'chatchila. The point of the pesulim listed in our Mishna is that they don't light as nicely but our wax candles light just as nicely as oil so there is no preference. I remember once hearing that there are some poskim who say it's better to use oil but most poskim do not agree with that.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Bais Shammai's shita about melacha being started on Erev Shabbos (Shabbos 17-19)

Beis Shammai's shita is a little bit hard to understand. In the mishna there seem to be two types of things that B"S says is asur to do on Erev Shabbos. The first is to put something in a kli like putting the flax in the oven. The second is to give things to a goy. I'm going to ignore the second one here. Why, according to Beis Shammai is it asur to put something in a kli on Erev Shabbos if it's going to complete on Shabbos?

It seems to be a machlokes Amoraim. Rav Yosef holds that it's because of shevisas keilim. B"S holds that there is an isur d'oraysa to let your keilim "do" melacha on Shabbos even if there isn't a real maaseh. However, Rabbah disagrees with that and holds that B"S only says that there is an isur of shevisas keilim if the kli is actually "doing" a maaseh. None of the cases of the mishna have a real maaseh. So then why does he say they are asur? Because of a gezeira. We don't want you to start them right before Shabbos because you might come to do it on Shabbos also. That fits in very well with the last case of the Mishna which says that B"S agrees by the grapes that there is no isur. That's because it's only asur d'rabonon to do it on Shabbos so the Rabbonon weren't gozeir on Erev Shabbos. How does Rabba understand that case? Why should there be no shevisas keilim d'oraysa? The gemara asks the question on 19a and says that it's only an isur d'rabonon so there is no gezeira.

Tosafos explains that the gemara is obviously working with R' Yosef's opinion because according to Rabba shevisas keilim is d'oraysa and not a gezeira.
The Ran says that this gemara is even working in Rabba and the gemara means that there is even though the kli doing the melacha is asur m'doraysa just like if you yourself did the melacha, they weren't gozer d'rabonons on keilim. He doesn't really explain why but I'd guess it's because there's no need. For a person we're afraid that if we let you do this then you might come to do something similar but we don't have that fear with keilim.
The Ritva though says it means that there is no isur and gzeira d'oraysa. He says that R' Yosef holds that according to B"S there is an isur d'oraysa of shevisas keilim so that you should rest and not come to do a melacha on your own. There aren't many gezeiros d'oraysa but according to this opinion this is one example.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Tamei keilim are machshiv liquids l'hachshir?

Zeiri in the name of Rav Chanina says (17a) that Habozer l'gat is machshir, as a gezaira for the case of where the grapes are being put directly into tamei keilim. The "tumas haklee", Rashi explains, is "machshiv" the liquid to be "machshir", since the tumah and hechsher come "as one".

Can someone explain to be what this means? I don't understand the sevarah of why a context of "tumaso v'hechsero k'achas" is more likely to make a liquid be machshir l'tumah.

Don't start up with me or else ... (Shabbos 17a)

Hillel asked Shamai a perfectly innocent question - if you made a gezeira on the juices of grapes being machshir even when they came out on their own then why weren't you also gozeir on olives? In the gemara Shamai doesn't even respond to the question but just says, "Don't bother me about olives or else I'll be gozeir on those also." Tosafos explains why the gezeira was made only on grapes but not on olives but it doesn't explain Shamai's response. Would he really make a gezeira just because Hillel was questioning his intial gezeira? Is that how the Rabonnon work?

The Chasam Sofer explains that Shamai was saying to Hillel that he didn't feel that a gezeira was necessary on olives for the reasons that Tosafos enumerates. However, if Hillel really was concerned that people wouldn't understand the distinction between olives and grapes then Shamai said he'd be forced to make the gezeira on olives also so people don't get confused. It wasn't meant as a threat just that if Hillel really was confused about it then it showed that there was a need for the gezeira on olives also.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Shitas Chachamim for Chalah = 1.5 Kav?

Tosfos (d"h Shamai) quotes from the Yerushalmi the sevaros for Hillel and Shamai's shitos of 2 or 1 Kavim as the shiur of chiyuv chalah.
Does anyone explain the Chachamim's shita of 1.5 Kav?

Food in the aron kodesh?!? (Shabbos14a)

In yesterday's daf, Shabbos 14a, it says that a sefer is Tamai because they used to put Teruma near the seforim, and the Chachamim wanted to stop them from doing so. Rabbi Rothchild in the torah journal Kol Hatorah (semi-annual journal from England) asks that "Ma'alin BaKodesh V'Ain Moridin" - an Aron Hakodesh may not be used for lesser purposes, so how could they have stored Teruma together with a Sefer Torah (or Nevi'im) in the first place. One answer he gives is that the Ta"z says that if the Sefer Torah is in the Aron, it's okay, it is only prohibited to use the Aron for other purposes if the Aron is not there. Others disagree with this.

Doneel (a new reader) sent me this to post on his behalf.

The power of the Rabonnon

The gemara in Shabbos on daf 14 - 15 talks about different levels of tuma that the Rabonon placed on various things. I can understand them saying that the things should be nitle (safek tuma) but how could you be soreif truma or kodshim on a sofek or because of a gezeira? There's an isur d'oraysa (at least an isur asay) to be meabed kodshim or truma b'yadayim because the pasuk says mishmeres trumosai. So how could the Rabonon override that with a kum v'asay of destroying it?

Monday, May 16, 2005

Rav Yishmael ben Elisha

Boy, it's been quiet here!
Has anyone else noticed (as someone pointed out to me) that Rav Yishmael ben Elisha was a cohen gadol that apparently lived through the time of the churbon.
In meseches brachos 7a, we learned about Rav Yishmael ben Elisha's famous story (now a popular song): "Paam Achas nichnasti l'haktir k'tores lifnei v'lifnim etc." Recently in meseches shabbos 12b, we learned that Rav Yishmael ben Elisha was the one who was unconcerned about chazal's takana not to read on shabbos by candlelight, and said "Ani Ekrah v'lo Ateh". According to the second version of the story, Rav Yishmael was actually nichshal in Isur shabbos, and wrote in his notebook: "when the bais hamikdash will be *rebuilt*, I will bring a fat chatos.