Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Daf Yomi - Taanis 16 - Hashem's Distress


The Gemora presents two reasons as to why they would place ashes on the Ark. Rabbi Yehuda ben Pazi says that it is as if Hashem is saying “I am with him in distress.” Rish Lakish states that it is as if to say: In their every distress, He is in distress.

The Beis HaLevi in his Dorshos (7) states that there is a huge difference between the two verses. Rabbi Yehuda ben Pazi maintains that Hashem, so to speak, suffers even when an individual member of Klal Yisroel is suffering. Rish Lakish holds that Hashem is in distress only when Klal Yisroel is in distress but not by an individual.

Based on this, the Beis HaLevi explains a Gemora in Megillah (31b). Rish Lakish maintains that we cannot recite a brocha on the curses mentioned in the Torah. Tosfos cites a Medrash that since Klal Yisroel is suffering, Hashem is distressed and it is not proper for us to be making a blessing when Hashem is in pain. The Ran asks on this explanation from a Mishna inn Brochos which explicitly states that one is obligated to recite a brocha on misfortunes in the same manner that he would recite a brocha if something good occurred to him. The Beis HaLevi answers that the Mishna in Brochos is referring to a misfortune of an individual where Hashem is not in distress and therefore a brocha can be recited, however the Gemora in Megillah, which is discussing the curses for the entire Klal Yisroel, Hashem is in pain and therefore a brocha cannot be recited.