Friday, January 05, 2007

Daf Yomi - Rosh Hashana 32 - Daf and Shabbos

by Reb Ben

The Gemara cites a dispute regarding the exposition that teaches us that one must refrain from work on Rosh HaShanah. Rabbi Eliezer derives this ruling from the words mikra kodesh, a holy convocation, which means to sanctify the day by refraining from work. Rabbi Akiva, however, learns this ruling from the word shabbason, a rest day, which means to refrain from work. We refer to Shabbos as Shabbos Kodesh, the holy Shabbos, and this is based on a verse regarding Shabbos. What is the distinction between shevisah, rest, and kedushah, which is normally translated as holiness? We have mentioned numerous times that the word Shabbos has its roots in the word shav, which means return. The word kodesh, however, which is translated as holy, means distanced. One would suppose that if he abstains from work on Shabbos, he has “observed” the Shabbos. In reality, however, this is not the case. One must first recognize, as the Sfas Emes writes, that Shabbos is a time when the world is subjugated to HaShem’s will. When one submits himself to HaShem’s will, which is the essence of Teshuvah, returning, he can then distance himself from all work and honor the Shabbos properly.