Saturday, March 24, 2007

Daf Yomi - Moed Katan 15 - An Excommunicate Studying Torah

Rav Yosef cites a braisa: One who has been excommunicated can teach others and they can teach him; he can be hired by others and others can work for him. However, one who has been placed in cherem (one who has been excommunicated twice for thirty days) cannot teach others and they cannot teach him; he cannot be hired by others and others cannot work for him, but he should study by himself in order not to interrupt his studies; he may also make a small store for a source of revenue.

The version of the Rosh states: he should study by himself in order not to lose his learning. The Reshash cites a braisa in Meseches Semochos which states that the reason he should learn is in order not to forget his learning. The Rambam states this reason as well.

A question is asked: Doesn’t every Jew have an obligation to study Torah? What is different about a person that has been placed in cherem, that he should study Torah only because of the concern that otherwise he might forget his learning?

A similar question is asked (Igros Moshe Y”D 2:110; B’Toroso Yehegeh p. 185) on the Rambam in Hilchos Talmud Torah (1:10) who states: Until when is a person obligated to study Torah? Until the day he dies. The Rambam cites a verse in the Torah and concludes: And if there is a time that he will not be engrossed in studying Torah, he will forget his learning. Why is that necessary? Would a person be exempt from studying Torah if he is confident that his learning will not be forgotten?

Any thoughts?

10 comments:

Rabbi Doniel Neustadt said...

One is obligated to learn the entire Torah. When he finishes learning the entire Torah he is no longer required to learn, if not for the fact that otherwise he would forget – see explanation in Emes Lyaakov al Hatorah, Vaeschanan 4:9

Avromi said...

Thank you, Reb Moshe says very similar to that.

Anonymous said...

Is that a view held by everyone and what does the whole torah mean every time a journal comes out i have a new chyuv to learn it all pal peh includimd bavli yerushalmi toseftas medrashim michilta ?

Avromi said...

Which view are you referring to? Kol hatorah does not include every new journal - torah shebiksav and torah shebaal peh

Reb Ben said...

I once heard that Ponovizhe Rav said that he had learned the whole Torah, so he can go out and fund raise. This seems to be based on Gemara Kiddushin that interprets vishinantam, sheyehay divrei Torah mechdadin bificho. Yet, according to Rashi there, one is never exempt because Rashi writes that vishinantam means to delve deeper.

Anonymous said...

I meant what is included in baal peh?

Avromi said...

You asked "Is that a view held by everyone." I was wondering which view you were referring to. Torah shebaal peh includes all Gemoros, Medrahim, Tosefta, Mechilta etc. The Rishunim and Acharonim are tools that assist us in attaining that goal.

Rabbi Karr said...

no not everyone can learn torah! Who should not? A person upset or drunk. He can not think properly. He also should not daven.If you have been excommunicated then you have to do t'sevah, think about all the things you did and how to correct them. On the 15th of Av you also can not learn torah because you have to think about the destruction of the Temple. However there is a problem you may forget your learning since you are not learning torah for so long and therefore you need to learn so as not to forget and the learning will help with the t'sevah

Rabbi Naftali Ganzweig said...

Steady learning of Torah
When Rav Leizer Silver was serving as rov in his earlier years he once came late to shachris. Upon the questioning of the congregants he replied that he was awake immersed in Torah study. The layman replied "we want a rav that knows already"! This showed their misunderstanding in the importance of steady Torah learning.

Rabbi Jacobovits said...

Maybe the Rosh held that really a person excommunicated can't learn Torah like an avel, but unlike an avel, there may not be a specific relatively small amount of time he won't be able to learn, so the Rosh says that we allow him to learn because he may forget his learning, which is also an issur. As for the Rambam, maybe it is an additional reason, similar to the gemara saying "Yehuda v'od lekra."