Monday, September 25, 2006

Daf Yomi - Sukkah 23 - Shofar on Shabbos

The Gemara cites a dispute between Rabbi Meir and Rabbi Yehudah whether a Sukkah constructed on top of an animal is valid or not. Rabbi Yehudah maintains that a Sukkah must be fit to be used for all seven days and since this Sukkah cannot be used on Shabbos or Yom Tov because of the Rabbinic injunction against riding on an animal, this Sukkah is invalid. Rabbi Meir, however, maintains that the Sukkah is valid because the Sukkah is Biblically fit for all seven days and the fact that it is not rabbinically fit does not invalidate the Sukkah. This issue of something that is biblically fit but is rabbinically unfit has halachic ramifications in other areas as well, such as regarding one who performs a mitzvah in a manner that was rabbinically prohibited if we can still say that he fulfilled his biblical obligation. This issue was previously discussed on Daf 3 here regarding sitting in a sukkah that has the table situated outside of the sukkah regarding sitting in a Sukkah where the table is placed outside the Sukkah. The question will arise regarding Rosh Hashanah that occurs on Shabbos where there is a Rabbinic injunction against blowing the shofar as one may come to carry the shofar four amos in a public domain to learn from an expert. What would be the halacha if one were to violate the rabbinical prohibition and blow shofar on Shabbos? Would one be rewarded for performing a mitzvah because he has fulfilled the biblical obligation or perhaps one does not even fulfill a biblical obligation when he is rabbinically prohibited form blowing shofar on Shabbos? This question would not present a problem according to the opinion of the Yerushalmi that maintains that one is biblically prohibited from blowing shofar on Shabbos. Rabbi Akiva Eiger rules that in such a situation one has fulfilled his biblical obligation of blowing shofar. Tosfos in Rosh Hashanah writes that blowing the shofar on Shabbos is rabbinically prohibited because it is considered a chachmah, an art, and not an act of labor. Rabbi Ezriel Cziment writes in a pamphlet called Zmanei Sasson that it is evident that even according to Tosfos, the Chachamim did not invalidate the shofar blasts, because then Rabbi Akiva Eiger would not have ruled that one fulfills his biblical obligation of blowing shofar. It is clear that if the only rabbinical injunction against blowing shofar on Shabbos was because of the concern that one may come to carry four amos in a public domain, the shofar blasts would not be invalidated. The novelty here is that even if the rabbinical injunction would invalidate the shofar blasts, this would be different than a Sukkah that the Chachamim invalidate when the table is outside.