Saturday, November 18, 2006

Daf Yomi - Beitza 23 - Electricity

Rav Yehuda rules that placing spices on top of buring coals is prohibited since it involves the melochos of extinguishing and kindling but placing spices on top of a hot earthenware plate with the intention of smoking the fruits would be permitted. Rashi explains that there is no extinguishing in this manner and we are not concerned with the kindling which occurs when the incense ignites since it is done in an unusual manner and is not a Biblical melocha.

Rav Shlomo Zalman wonders as to what the halacha would be if one would turn on an electric light on Yom Tov in an unusual manner. It would seem from Rashi that it would be permitted since he permits performing a melocha in an unusual manner if it would be deemed to be necessary for Yom Tov.

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Daf Yomi - Beitza 23 - Twelve and Thirteen Thousand not Literal

The Gemora cites that Rabbi Elozar ben Azarya would take thirteen thousand calves as maaser on his animals every year. Sheorim Mitzuyanim Bhalacha cites Tosfos in Brochos (20a) and Rashi in Chulin (95b) which state that twelve thousand and thirteen thousand are common terminoligies throughout Shas and they are not to be taken literally. This can be proven from the fact that our Gemora states that he took thirteen thousand calves as maaser and the Gemora in Shabbos (54b) states that it was twelve thousand.

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Daf Yomi - Beitza 23 - Fragrance on the Hands of the Kohanim

Rabbah and Rav Yosef both state that it is prohibited to turn over a cup with fragrance on top of silk garments since it will produce a new fragrance in the clothing and this forbidden because it's creating something new. Rashi explains that this is Rabinically forbidden since it is regarded as if he is doing a new melocha. Rashi in Shabbos (51b) states the same thing regarding transforming snow into water. It is noteworthy that creating something new which is molid and when something achieves its present useful state on Yom Tov which is nolad are two separate things and have two different sets of halachos. something that is nolad is considered muktza and one is prohibited from handling on Yom Tov; however molid which resembles a melocha is permitted on yom Tov if it will involve a preparation for food.

The Taz (O"C 511) writes that there are those that place a smelling fragrance of oil into the water that the kohanim wash their hands with on Yom Tov. This, he rules, is forbidden because it creates a smell in the water on Yom Tov and it is even forbidden to place the oil into the water prior to Yom Tov for it will be producing a smell on their hands on Yom Tov.

Chacham Tzvi (92) disagrees and maintains that there is never an issur of molid in foods or drinks in the same manner as there is no prohibition of dying foods or drinks. There is also no prohibition on the the flesh of a person and therefore it would be permitted to place the oil into the water on Yom Tov.

Rav Yaakov Emden (42) writes that if it is the custom in the city to prohibit this action, it is preferable not to do it. The Chida rules stringently as well.

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Friday, November 17, 2006

Daf Yomi - Beitza 22 - Shower on YomTov

There is a big discussion in the poskim regarding the halacha of taking a shower on Yom Tov. One of the primary sources is our Gemora. I collected some of the conclusions that some poskim have reached. The psakim mentioned here are not a haskama on their view - it is just a collection from the internet.


These Halachos were shown by Rabbi Ostroff to
HaGaon HaRav Moshe Sternbuch, shlita

Is bathing in hot water permitted on Shabbos?

Several factors are taken into account in providing a ruling.

* The bathing itself.
* The hot water system used; a boiler, sun heater etc.
* Was the water heated before or on Shabbos?

What can be wrong with bathing - I don't see any melacha involved?

Indeed bathing does not involve a melacha but is nevertheless prohibited.

The gemora Shabbos 40a [1] relates that initially people would bathe (in bath-houses) in water heated before Shabbos, but the attendants would heat the water on Shabbos and declare that it was heated before Shabbos.

So Chazal prohibited bathing but permitted the sauna.

People would continue to bathe in hot water and declare that they were wet from sweating in the sauna, so they prohibited the sauna as well.

The gemora concludes that bathing in hot water and sweating are prohibited but bathing in cold water is permitted. This will be dealt with later.

Well maybe a shower in hot water is different to bathing?

Another gemora on Shabbos 39b [2] cites a machlokes between R' Me'ir and R' Yehuda and halacha is in accordance with R' Yehuda, who states the following.

One may not shower one's entire body with hot water on Shabbos and Rashi annotates that this is even with water heated before Shabbos.

To summarize: one may not shower or bathe in hot water on Shabbos, even with water heated before Shabbos and even if a 'water-heating' system is not involved. It is the actual bathing that is prohibited.

Why does the gemora say one's entire body?

The gemora on the same amud makes a distinction between water heated before or on Shabbos and states that one may wash one's face, hands and legs with water heated before Shabbos but not with water heated on Shabbos.

Although one could argue that the same reason that prohibits washing one's entire body should prohibit washing face, hands and legs, nevertheless Chazal only prohibited bathing the entire body.

The Shulchan Aruch HaRav [3] (based on the Magen Avraham) adds that the majority of one's body is considered the entire body, whereas face, hands and legs are the minor parts. Consequently, one may wash the minor parts of one's body - not only face, hands and legs, provided that one does not wash the majority. [4]

Isn't there something about washing one limb at a time?

That leniency is applied to Yom Tov not to Shabbos. [5]

You mentioned that one may not bathe even one limb with water heated on Shabbos, how was the water heated?

We find several permitted heating modes.

* Heated by a gentile for a sick person. A gentile may heat water to bathe a sick person but a healthy person may not bathe even a single limb in that water. [6]
* Water placed near a heat source, in a way that it would not reach the temperature of yad soledes bo. [7] Certain restrictions exist, such as it cannot be placed on a hot-plate or blech [8] on Shabbos, nor can it be placed near heat if it can reach yad soledes bo over a period of time. One may not place cold water on a radiator intending to remove it before it reaches yad soledes bo. If it cannot reach yad soledes bo it is permitted.

This water is heated on Shabbos and may not be used to wash hands or an arm etc.

And water heated before Shabbos?

Water placed on a hot-plate or blech before Shabbos and heated on Shabbos, is considered as heated before Shabbos. Sun heated water may also be used to wash face, hands and legs. [9]

Do the sick and infirm share the same halachos as the rest of the populace?

R' Akiva Eiger writes that an ailing person may bathe in hot water heated before Shabbos even though he is not a choleh she'ein bo sakana (sick in bed). [10]

May one use water from a solar heater (when water was heated before Shabbos)?

We have dealt with this issue in vol. V shiur 9, where it was demonstrated that while drawing water from the water boiler, fresh cold water enters and might be heated from the existing water. Another problem was how to define the solar panels.

A regular boiler heated with a heat element is far more severe and is off limits on Shabbos; it is far too complicated.

Rabbi Yisroel Dov Webster

Question: Is it permissible to take a warm shower on Yom Tov ?

Answer: On Yom Tov according to some poskim only a cold shower is permissible if one has a lot of discomfort otherwise taking a shower is prohibited.

Chicago Rabbinical Council

Bathing on Yom Tov

The celebration of Pesach this year which falls on Thursday and Friday is most challenging as it is part of a three day abstention from melacha and prohibited activity when we add on Shabbos. We are all aware that we rely on the eruv tavshilin in regard to preparation of cooking on Yom Tov for Shabbos. However, due to the fact of a widespread change in our modern lifestyle concerning daily showering or bathing, is it possible to shower on Yom Tov?

The Shulchan Aruch rules that the entire body may not be bathed with warm water heated on Yom Tov, but rather on the face, hands, and feet (Orach Chaim 511, 2). This is based on the Talmudic analysis of the phrase regarding the permissibility of doing certain “melachos” on Yom Tov which states: “Ach asher ye’achel l’chol nefesh hu l’vado ye’aseh lachem” (Shmot XII: 17) Only that which may be eaten by every soul that alone may be made for you.”

The principle deduced is that the type of activity allowed was shaveh l’chol nefesh' an act everyone would normally do if it would be permitted. In the Talmud, although heating water for cooking is definitely permitted because everyone would have pleasure from this action, in the matter of bathing the entire body only the highly delicate, sensitive people would bathe that often, but the majority would not. Therefore, they would not be included in the “hetter” in the permissibility of complete bathing. In the above context the emphasis is not on the very act of bathing but rather the action of heating the water on Yom Tov for something that is not shaveh l’chol nefesh. The Baalei Tosfos (Beitzah 21b) remark that the act of complete bathing with warm water would only apply to those who are meungim, people of pleasure, in contrast to the majority and consequently it is not shaveh l’chol nefesh. However the fact that members of contemporary society are showering daily would place the majority of people in the category of meungim and it would be considered as a davar ha’shaveh l’chol nefesh.

Without going into all of the details of those responsa who have dealt with this matter, there is room for leniency in situations of great discomfort. It should be noted that the above does not apply to Shabbos as far as the use of hot water is concerned because there are specific rabbinic edicts against bathing in hot water, etc. (Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim, 326) [See Hadarom no. 70-71 Elul 5760, Rechitza b’Yom Tov]

Young Israel Passaic

SHOWERING ON SHABBAT AND YOM TOV most especially in hot weather is probably one of the most difficult situations to address. According to one opinion (Rambam), showering or bathing is prohibited by g'zayra (rabbinic edict) to prevent what inevitably will result in chillul Shabbat or Yom Tov. The predominant minhag is therefore not to shower on Shabbat or Yom Tov.

This having been said, nonetheless, there are some rudimentary guidelines that can be offered in how to deal acceptably with showering especially over a three-day Yom Tov. One must be certain that these guidelines are not interpreted incorrectly, so it best to ask before and take the time to understand how things ought to be done.

[5.1] On Yom Tov even though one may use hot water for preparing food, one may only use that same source of hot water only to wash parts of the body selectively, i.e. face, hands, feet and any area which has been dirtied. One may not fully shower with hot water on Yom Tov (g'zayrat merchatz).

[5.2]. Under the duress of oppressingly hot weather (mitzta'ayr), one may take a cold shower on Yom Tov rinsing the entire body. According to one opinion, the shower may even be tepid under such circumstances (R. Akiva Eiger to Shulchan Aruch O. Ch. 307:5).

[5.3] At all times one may not use a washcloth or a bar of soap. (Some even object to liquid soap and commercially prepared shampoos because these are not sufficiently liquified).

[5.4] Drying one's hair by rubbing the scalp with a bath towel is not permitted (because of s'chita). Obviously, electric hair dryers can not used.

[5.5] An infant may be bathed in hot water on Yom Tov as is necessary.

[5.6] Recreational swimming is not acceptably within the spirit of Shabbat or Yom Tov even though one is allowed to totally immerse in a mikvah on Shabbat and Yom Tov for the sake of the mitzvah. If a swim is the only way to cool off in a heat wave, one should ask a serious question of a Rav before attempting such relief.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 22 - Lekavod Shabbos

The Gemara discusses a case where if one who did not make an eruvei tavshilin for himself, others can prepare food for him. Some say that that they can even roast small fish for him. What is the reason that we eat fish on Shabbos? In Siddur Abir Yaakov it is said that one reason why we eat fish on Shabbos is because when HaShem created the world, He bestowed three blessings. On the fifth day, HaShem blessed the fish. On the sixth day, HaShem blessed man. On the seventh day, HaShem blessed Shabbos. When we eat fish on Shabbos, we bring the three together. It is said in Koheles that something that is threefold cannot be broken easily. A second reason offered is that Shabbos provides us with a taste of the Messianic Era. At that time the righteous will be given a meal from the fish called leviasan. Eating fish on Shabbat reflects this idea. I have also heard that the word for fish is דג, which is in numerical value seven, and Shabbos is the seventh day of the week. Perhaps there is another idea regarding the eating of fish on Shabbos. It is known that the word Shabbos is an acrostic for the words שינה בשבת תענוג, sleep on Shabbos is a delight. Some people assume that one must sleep on Shabbos as much as possible. Yet, the halacha is that a Talmid Chacham who is engaged in Torah study all week can sleep more than usual on Shabbos. One who does not have the same opportunity to study Torah during the week, however, should sleep less on Shabbos and he should study more Torah. I heard Rabbi Nachum Lansky, Shlita, (Maggid Shiur in Ner Yisroel Baltimore) say that Yehoshua Ben Nun was thus called because a fish in Aramaic is a נון. Fish do not have eyelids, and Hashem instructed Yehoshua to study Torah day and night. Thus, we can suggest that we eat fish on Shabbos to demonstrate that since most Jews do not have the opportunity to study Torah all week, should at the least stay awake as much as possible on Shabbos and engage in Torah study.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 21- Leaving the light on

The Gemara states that the Kohanim are mishulchan govoha kazachu, they receive their portion from the table of the Most High. We can interpret this phrase homiletically to mean that the Kohanim receive their purity from upon High. The Shem Mishmuel writes that the Halacha is that when one lights Chanukah candles and the lights are extinguished, one is not obligated to relight the candles. Yet, if this had occurred in the Bais HaMikdash, the Kohen would have had to relight the Menorah. The reason for this is because when Aharon HaKohen lit the Menorah, it was akin to igniting the pilot light, and we are lighting our candles from this great light. When the lights were extinguished in the Bais HaMikdash, however, it was as if the pilot light was extinguished and the Menorah had to be rekindled. Thus, the Kohanim received their purity and holiness directly from up High, and it was essential that they always maintain their high spiritual level.

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Daf Yomi - Beitza 21 - Shechting a Korban on Yom Tov

Rav Yisroel Gordon from the Kollel in Palo Alto raised an interesting question on their daf blog here.
The gemara asks, acc. to opinion that nedarim and nedavos can't be brought on yom tov, what would be if one violated shechita, would you sprinkle the blood. The gemara says that if the meat is around all agree that you can sprinkle the blood (and violate a shevus of zrika - see pesachim 65b) in order to eat the meat on yom tov (ochel nefesh pushes off the shevus of zrika).
The gemara implies "avar vishachat" that he intentionally violated the prohibition to shecht the korban, so the meat should be assur m'drabonon to eat just like one who cooks on shabbos b'mazid the food is assur (beitza 17b!). If it is assur to eat the meat there is no longer a heter to do the zrika (acc. to rava)? He suggested that since there is a mitzvah to eat kodshim, we can apply mitzvos la'av l'eihanos nitnu to allow eating the korban. To me it seems that this would only work with the chiddush of r' moshe (o.c. 1:126:3) that we are magdir even the issur d'rabonon of ma'aseh shabbos as an issur hana'a so that the heter of mitzvos la'av leihanos nitnu would apply. If it would be a regular kenas derabonon not to eat it, there wouldn't be a heter of mitzvos la'av leihanos nitnu.
I couldn't find anyone else (i.e. tzlach, pnei yehoshua, sfas emes) address the question.

The question intrigued me and I found it in a sefer and commented there. Here are some of the comments.

Avromi said...

reb shlomo zalman in minchas shlomo says that if it would be bemeizid like the loshon is mashma, it should be ussur because of maaseh yom tov.
he does quote a kehilas yaakov which im not sure what he says yet. i cant find it.

5:49 PM

Avi Lebowitz said...

i looked for the teshuva you mentioned from minchas shlomo. i was only able to find in chelek 1 teshuva 10 footnote 7 a discussion about why the meat is not muktzah. this issue is already discussed at length by the tzlach and mitzpah eisan (printed in the back of the gemara). but i still have not found the question about the meat being assur bec. of ma'aseh shabbos.

6:47 PM
Avromi said...

he has a sefer on beitza - its not in the teshuvos one

7:24 PM

Yossie Schonkopf said...

maybe: you cannot make hekdesh asur an isur cheftza because it doen't belong to you. a person may not make asur what is not his.

7:32 PM
Yossie Schonkopf said...

also, there is no shvus in the mikdash, maybe this included.

7:35 PM
Avromi said...

the pnei yehoshua asks on the gem that there shouldnt be shvus bmikdash bichlal so why should the zrika be assur? shita says that here is different since he did an aveira.

7:39 PM

We also discussed previously as to what the prohibition would be for performing a zerikah on Shabbos here.

Daf Yomi - Yoma 46 - Zerika on Shabbos - What's Wrong?

It is clear from Rashi and Tosfos on this daf that a possuk is necessary to teach us that shechita and zerika (the sprinkling of the blood) is permitted on Shabbos. Reshash is bothered as to what the issur would be to perform zerikas hadam on Shabbos? The Rashba in Menochos (21) seems to indicate that the predicament would be that the azarah is considered reshus harabim. The Mishna in Tamid states that if a sheretz was found in the azarah on Shabbos, they would turn a pot over it. The Rosh comments that the difficulty was that the sheretz is deemed to be muktza. He quotes others who explain that it would be forbidden to transport it on Shabbos for the azarah is reshus harabim. He disagrees vehemently with this, for the Gemora Pesachim states that it is regarded as reshus harabim only in respect to the halachos of tumah, but not for Shabbos. It would seem obvious that the azarah is not reckoned as a reshus harabim for it is surrounded by walls and the doors are locked at night?

Why would zerikas hadam be considered a violation of Shabbos, that we need a passuk to say that it is acceptable?

Shlomo said...


Just noticed on the Midrashiya that they bring a Tiferes Yisroel that it might have to do with צביעה or they say their own logic (which im not quite sure what it is) that it might be זורה - winnowing, but it looks from them it is some type of separating the blodd on two sides of the mizbeach - not sure though.

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Thursday, November 16, 2006

Daf Yomi - Beitzah 20 - Don't leave your Master's Table empty

The Gemara states that Bais Hillel used the following kal vachomer to prove that one can offer an olas reiyah on Yom Tov. If on Shabbos, when cooking is prohibited, one can offer sacrifices to HaShem, then certainly on Yom Tov, when cooking is permitted, one should be allowed to offer sacrifices. It is only just that your table should not be full while your Master’s table is empty. It is worth noting that this expression, “your table should not be full while your Master’s table is empty,” is applicable to all situations in life. One manifestation of this idea is regarding prayer. One normally assumes that prayer is for ones own self, where he has the opportunity to request that HaShem provide him with his needs. Rav Shimshon Pinkus zt”l and yibadel maichayim lechayim, Rav Yitzchak Zilberstein, Shlita, in Aleinu Leshabeiach, write that if one has the opportunity to be granted an audience with the King of Kings, it would seem foolish to squander this opportunity by making trivial requests. Rather, when one prays to HaShem, he should pray that the great desecration of HaShem’s Name in the world be removed and that we merit the arrival of Moshiach speedily in our days.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Daf Yomi - Beitza 20 - The Nazir's Korbanos

The Gemora rules that if one says that he obligates himself to bring a korban todah and he wants to discharge his obligation of bringing his korban chagiga by bringing this todah during Yom Tov, the vow has validity and he must bring the korban todah but he will not fulfill the chagiga obligation with it.

The Gemora also rules that if one declares himself to become a nazir and when he completes his nezirus he will bring the korbanos from the money of maaser sheni, the vow takes affect - he is a nazir, but he may not use the maaser sheni money for the korbanos.

Rashi explains that once one commits to offering a korban, he is immediately obligated to bring it and it's as if hekdesh has taken possession of the money. One cannot use other money for this obligation since hekdesh has already taken hold of his private money.

Tosfos states that if the person would have changed the order of his declaration and stated that on the condition that the nezirus korbanos can come from maaser sheni money, I make myself a nazir or if he states that on the condition that he can discharge his chagiga obligation, he is bringing a korban todah, the condition is valid.

The Lechem Mishna in Hilchos Chagiga (2:14) cites an opinion of a Raavad that agrees with Tosfos regarding a korban todah and chagiga that the stipulation will be effective; however in regards to a nazir, he disagrees and maintains that one cannot obligate himself to become a nazir on the condition that the korbanos come form maaser sheni money. What is the explanation of the Raavad for this distinction?

Rav Elchonon Wasserman explains that the Raavad maintains that one does not obligate himself in the nezirus korbanos, rather he becomes a nazir and the Torah mandates that he must bring korbanos. Therfore, one cannot stipulate that he wants to be a nazir and the korbanos should come from maaser sheni money since the korbanos are not part of his vow. Tosfos holds that the korbanos of the nazir are included in his vow and therefore he can stipulate that he wants to obligate himself to become a nazir but the korbanos can come from maaser sheni money.

Rabbi Shimon holds that one who obligates himself to become a nazir and adhere to all its halachos except for the abstaining from wine, it is not valid and he is not a nazir. It would stand to reason that according to Tosfos, the halacha would be the same if he declares his intention to become a nazir except for the korbanos, it would not be effective. However, according to the Raavad, there can be a distinction since the korbanos are not included in the vow and acceptance of nezirus.

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Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Daf Yomi - Beitza 19 - Appearances can be Deceiving

The Halacha is that if someone was intending to shecht and eat the korban Pesach with one group, he has permission to change his mind and eat with another group and he is not required to immerse his utensils another time. Our Mishna states that if a person wants to act stringently and immerse these utensils a second time due to the new group, he is permitted to do so on Yom Tov.

Rashi explains that this is not regarded as 'appearing as fixing a utensil' which is forbidden on Yom Tov since there is no real purpose in immersing them a second time.

The Shita Mekubetzes asks that this halacha would seem superfluous? Why does the Mishna find it necessary to state this ruling when it is clear that if the immersing is accomplishing nothing, it will be permitted? He answers that the novelty is that even though the owner thinks that he is fixing this utensil, it is nevertheless permitted.

Sheorim Mitzuyanim Bhalacha infers from here that the prohibition against immersing utensils on Yom Tov because it appears that one is fixing a utensil is referring to others. Since others who are viewing the immersion will think that you are repairing this utensil, it is prohibited. That is why in this case it is permitted.

This explains why one is permitted to immerse himself on Yom Tov because it appears as if he is cooling himself. Even though the person himself knows that he is immersing to rid himself of the tumah, that is no concern to us since the onlookers think that he is cooling himself off. Therefore, one should recite the blessing quietly for otherwise it would be evident that he is immersing because of the mitzva.

This is similar to a Magen Avrohom (323:13) who writes regarding the Rama's ruling that if one purchased a utensil from a Gentile , there is a manner in which he can immerse it on Yom Tov that it will not appear as if he is fixing the utensil. He can immerse it in a mikvah and fill up the utensil with water at the same time and use the water, so that it will not appear as if he is immersing , rather he is just drawing water to use. The Magen Avrohom writes that if he would recite a blessing, it would be counterproductive.

This would not be consistent with the ruling of the Rambam according to the Beis Yosef's explanation. The Rambam writes that beis din should not immerse a convert on Shabbos or Yom Tov since it is something that requires beis din. Why didn't the Rambam say that the reason is because it is forbidden to repair on Yom Tov like it is stated in our Gemora? The Beis Yosef explains that the reason of appearing like fixing is negated by the logic that one could say that he is cooling himself off and therefore the Rambam needed a different reason. The logic of 'cooling off' by a convert is a little far'fetched. There are talmidei chachomim next to him and they are telling him all the laws of the Torah, plus for the fact that he is reciting a blessing and nevertheless we still would say that perhaps he is cooling himself off.

Harav Moshe Feinstein (O"C 1 126:6) writes different than what we were discussing. He states that an action that can be done for two reasons, one for fixing and one for pleasure - such an act is permitted to do on Yom tov for we are not concerned that he will become lenient in these matters because of this. This is why immersing in a mikvah is permitted even though the individual is well aware as to the real reason that he is immersing.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 19 - New Year's Resolutions

The Gemara cites the opinion of Rabbi Elazar the son of Rabbi Shimon who maintains that the reason the Torah mentions the festival of Sukkos is because Sukkos causes the prohibition of baal teacheir to be violated. Thus, if one pledged to bring an offering on the day prior to Sukkos, he will have violated the prohibition of baal teacheir if Sukkos passes and he has not brought the offering that he pledged to bring. One must wonder why Rabbi Elazar the son of Rabbi Shimon maintains that one violates the prohibition of baal teacheir even in the course of one festival. Perhaps the idea is that the Medrash states that subsequent to Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur, one is engaged in the performance of numerous mitzvos, and he does not even have time to sin. Thus, if one has the time to contemplate making a pledge that will require even more of him, the Torah mandates that he fulfill his pledge immediately, so that he will demonstrate that his pledge is truly sincere and not just a “New Years’ resolution.”

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 18- The Holy Light of Creation

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Daf Yomi - Beitza 18 - A Utensil Before Immersion

Our Gemora discusses the issue of being tovel a keli on Yom Tov. One is not permitted to use a new utensil produced by a Goy before he immerses it in the mikvah. One is accustomed to think that this is prohibited only due to the fact that he is obligated to immerse it in the mikvah. It is not like cooking with a utensil that is unkosher. It should not be considered like something which is treif. It could be compared to the prohibition of eating before reciting kiddush. Food is not prohibited then like a fast, since there is a mitzva of kiddush, one cannot eat until he discharges that obligation.

Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach in his sefer on Beitza, Minchas Shlomo asks a question based on this. The Rama rules that if A Yisroel and a Goy buy a utensil in partnership, the utensil does not require tevila before it is used. This is because the immersing in the mikvah will not accomplish anything since it will still be owned by the Goy. The Beis Meir asks on the logig of the Rama. While true that nothing will be accomplished with tevila, what has removed the prohibition from the utensil allowing it to be used? Rav Shlomo Zalman asks on the Beis Meir and explains the opinion of the Rama. Even if we will maintain that immersing a utensil bought from a Goy is Biblical, the prohibition of using it prior to the tevila is only Rabbinical. Perhaps it can be said that when tevila will not accomplish anything, there is no mitzva of tevila and therefore automatically there will be no prohibition against using this utensil.

It seems evident from the Beis Meir that he holds that a utensil prior to tevila is an object of issur and cannot be utilyzed unless there is something to be matir it.

The Rishonim on our daf explain the reason that one cannot be tovel a keli on yom Tov is because it would appear as if one would be fixing. This would also indicate that the utensil prior to the tevila is a 'chefetz d'issura' - an object which is inherently prohibited and not just because there is an obligation of tevila. Rav Shlomo Zalman states that it can be regarded as if the keli is tomei before immersion in the mikvah.

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Sunday, November 12, 2006

Daf Yomi - Beitzah 17 - Deception is the worst

The Gemara states that we are more concerned about one who employs a ruse than one who violates a rabbinical prohibition intentionally. The reason for this logic is because one who violates a rabbinic ordinance will most likely not cause others to act similar to him, as he is not justified for violating the rabbinic ordinance. Furthermore, the one who violated the ordinance will eventually repent, so we are not concerned that the institution of eruv will be nullified. Regarding one who is employing a ruse, however, he feels that he is permitted to act in this manner, so he will not repent and others will learn from him. We are apt to assume that one who sins intentionally is worse than one who merely tries to get away with something, yet we see from this Gemara how careful one must be when acting deceptively. We find that Yaakov was more concerned about deceiving his father than he was about taking the blessings that belonged to Esav. Yaakov said that if his father would feel him he would be in his father’s eyes like a mocker. The Gemara states that Yaakov was saying that one who deceives someone is akin to an idol worshipper. Similarly, we find that it is worse to steal from someone discreetly than to steal from someone in public. The reason for this is because one who steals discreetly demonstrates that he is afraid of man but he is not concerned that HaShem is observing his actions. There is nothing worse than one who deceives himself, because ultimately he will deceive others and he will deny that HaShem knows everything, which is equivalent to worshiping idols. May HaShem protect us from deceit and falsehood and allow us to study his Torah, which is truth, and HaShem’s seal is truth.

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Daf Yomi - Beitza 17 - Ploys and Ruses

The Gemora cites a Braisa where someone established an eruv tavshilin and subsequently ate from it before he was able to cook for Shabbos. He is not permitted to cook for Shabbos but he is allowed to cook for Yom Tov and the leftovers will be for Shabbos. It is considered a ploy to cook directly for Shabbos and claim that he is expecting guests for Yom Tov. This ruse is not allowed and if he would do that, the food is prohibited. The Chachamim were concerned that if the food would be permitted, people would tend to be less meticulous in making an Eruv other times.

Rashi and Tosfos both ask from a Gemora on 11b that does allow for a certain ruse to be performed on Yom Tov. One is not permitted to salt meat which he will not be eating on Yom Tov since it is considered unnecessary exertion. Rav Ada rules that one may salt one piece of meat and then change his mind on this piece and decide that he would rather eat another. He can salt the second piece and then do the same with the third and continue in this manner until all of his meat is salted. Why is this ploy allowed?

Rashi and Tosfos both answer that regarding the salting, there is no melacho being perfomed since tanning is not applicable by foods. The fact that there will be unnecessary exertion with the salting is negated by the flip-side of not slaughtering on Yom Tov out of fear that the meat will spoil. This will cause a detraction in the simchas Yom Tov. Our Gemora is concerned about cooking which is a melocha and therefore we do not allow the ruse of cooking and claiming that there are guests coming.

It is noteworthy that not all ploys are judged the same. Sheorim Mitzuyanim B'halacha cites a Gemora in Shabbos 139b that permits a talmid chocham to perform a certain ruse. Rav Huna was allowed to put a clove of garlic in a barrel of wine to seal the opening thereby stopping the wine from coming out. His claim was that he did this in order to store the garlic away. This is actually a melocha of fixing the barrel and nonetheless we allow a talmid chocham to do this.

Rav Huna also went to sleep in a Gentile's ferry in order to guard his fruit on the other side even though he knew that the ferry will be crossing the river. He was allowed to claim that he was just going to sleep.

The Gemora there states that since the concern is regarding Rabbinical melochos, we allow a talmid chocham to perform such ploys for he will not transgress this prohibition outright.

There is another Gemora in Shabbos 95a which allows a wife or daughter of a talmid chocham to wash various utensils in different parts of the house. This is permitted even though her intent is to wash the floor which is normally prohibited.

We have one Gemora that prohibits anyone from performing a ruse, one Gemora that permita a talmis chocham, one that permits a wife of a talmid chocham and one that allows anyone.

Obviously, not all ploys and ruses are treated the same - what the rule is, we are not sure.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 16 - The Neshamah Yeseira, the Primordial Light

From Shabbos: Taam HaChaim Balak 5764. For more inspirational thoughts on Shabbos and other topics, please visit
In Parashas Balak, we find many ideas that distinguish the Jewish People from the nations of the world. For instance, Bilam declares: for there is no divination in Yaakov, and saw no perversity in Israel. Hashem his G-d is with him, and the friendship of the King is in him. The prime distinction, that we have Shabbos, does not seem to be alluded to anywhere in the parasha. The Sfas Emes writes that the concept of a curse finds its source in the sin of Adam Harishon. Even blessing is somewhat tainted by curse. Bilam was able to curse people because nothing in this world is perfect. The Jewish People, however, merit blessing from the Torah, the Tree of Life. The original light that Hashem concealed for the righteous is the light of Shabbos, when a Jew receives the neshama yeseira, the extra soul that provides spiritual nourishment on this holy day. This idea led Bilam to proclaim: How can I curse? G-d has not cursed. How can I anger? Hashem is not angry. For from its origins, I see it rock-like, and from hills do I see it. Bilam alluded to the idea that the Jewish People preceded creation, and they benefit from the original light of creation. This light has no influence from the evil forces and from any type of curse. It is said: for His anger endures but a moment; life results from His favor. Bilam was aware of the moment when Hashem got angry, but life results from His favor. The Jewish People are a part of this favor, as Bilam said: and the friendship of the King is in him. This favor is manifested in Shabbos, of which we recite in Kiddush on Friday evening: Blessed are You, HaShem, our G-d, King of the universe, Who has sanctified us with His commandments, took pleasure in us…. May we merit realizing that Shabbos is a day of favor that is unique to the Jewish People. When the Shabbos arrives, she unified herself in Oneness and divests herself of the Other Side [any trace of evil], all harsh judgments are removed from her, and she remains alone with the Oneness of her light.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 16 - TThe Neshamah Yeseira, holiness and purity

From Shabbos: Taam HaChaim Devarim 5764. For more inspirational thoughts on Shabbos and other topics, please visit
In this week’s Haftorah, the Navi Yeshaya chastises the Jewish People regarding their observance of Shabbos. It is said: Bring your worthless meal-offering no longer, it is incense of abomination to Me. As for the New Moon and Shabbos, and your calling of convocations, I cannot abide mendacity with solemn assembly. My soul detests your New Moons and your appointed times; they have become a burden upon Me; I am weary of bearing them. The Vilna Gaon writes that the terms of condemnation that the Navi uses correspond to the verse further on where the Navi states: If you restrain your foot because it is the Shabbos; refrain from accomplishing your own deeds on My Holy day; if you proclaim the Shabbos ‘a delight’, and the holy day of Hashemhonored’, and you honor it by not engaging in your own affairs, from seeking your own needs or discussing the forbidden-then you will delight in HaShem etc.The Gaon writes that the essence of Shabbos is that it is Hashem’s day, and one should not indulge in pleasures on Shabbos for his own sake. The Gemara records that the Caesar asked Rabbi Yehoshua ben Chananiah, “why is it that the Shabbos food has such a tantalizing aroma?” Rabbi Yehoshua responded, “We have a spice in the food called Shabbos and that is why the food has such an enticing fragrance. The Caesar requested that Rabbi Yehoshua provide him with this special spice. Rabbi Yehoshua replied that one who keeps the Shabbos benefits from the spice of Shabbos, and one who does not keep the Shabbos cannot benefit from the spice. The Gaon explains that only one who keeps the Shabbos merits holiness and purity. This holiness and purity is reflected in the Neshama Yeseira, the extra soul, which one earns when he honors the Shabbos for the sake of Shabbos. This idea is also expressed in the Tefillah of Shabbos where we say: those who delight in it will inherit eternal honor. It refers to the Neshama Yeseira. One must proclaim the Shabbos a delight, and by delighting in the Shabbos, he will earn an inheritance without parameters. Let this be the year when our observance of Shabbos for the sake of Shabbos allows us to merit the Final Redemption.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 16 - The Neshamah Yeseira, a partnership of body and soul

From Shabbos: Taam HaChaim Noach 5765. For more inspirational thoughts on Shabbos and other topics, please visit
Parashas Noach is replete with references to Shabbos. The Zohar states that the name Noach itself signifies Shabbos. In a sense, the flood brought Shabbos to the world, similar to Shemitah, the sabbatical year when the land rests. When the Ark came to rest, it is said: ותנח התבה בחדש השביעי בשבעה עשר יום לחדש על הרי אררט, and the Ark came to rest in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, upon the mountains of Ararat. The word seven, alluding to Shabbos, is mentioned twice in this verse. After Noach left the Ark, Hashem said: עד כל ימי הארץ זרע וקציר וקר וחם וקיץ וחרף ויום ולילה לא ישבתו, continuously, all the days of the earth, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease. The Gemara derives from this verse that a gentile who observes the Shabbos is liable the death penalty. What is the meaning of all these references to Shabbos?The Sfas Emes explains that just like Noach inside the Ark was protected from the elements, similarly a Jew can take refuge from the workweek on Shabbos, by resting in the Divine Presence. On Shabbos, the Sfas Emes writes, one rests from work and this offers freedom for the soul. Nonetheless, a person was created to perfect the soul, and the body and the soul perfoming deeds in unison accomplish this. This partnership allows the Jew to merit the נשמה יתירה, the extra soul, on Shabbos. Similarly, although Noach was protected inside the Ark, the Medrash states that Noach requested that Hashem free him from confinement, in order that he could perfect his soul. Through the efforts one exerts to vanquish the Evil Inclination and the forces of materialism, one can earn the reward of Shabbos, which is true rest from the physical world and its struggles.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 16 - Neshamah Yeseira and a Candle

From Shabbos: Taam HaChaim Mikeitz-Chanukah 5765. For more inspirational thoughts on Shabbos and other topics, please visit
In the Shabbos Zemiros of מה ידידות, we recite the words להדליק נר בברכה, to kindle the flame with blessing. Why do we honor the Shabbos with lighting candles? The Tolaas Yaakov writes that on Shabbos a Jew is endowed with a נשמה יתירה, an extra soul. It is said: נר ה' נשמת אדם, a man's soul is the lamp of Hashem. The Ben Ish Chai writes that the candle expresses the virtue of the Holy Shabbos. One can light many torches from the flame of a single candle, and the candle’s light will not be diminished in any form. Similarly, Shabbos influences and illuminates the whole week, yet Shabbos does not lose any if its goodness and bright illumination.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 16 - Neshamah Yeseira and Crowns

From Shabbos: Taam HaChaim Ki Sisa 5765. For more inspirational thoughts on Shabbos and other topics, please visit
In this week’s parasha, it is said: וביום השביעי שבת וינפש, and on the seventh day He rested and was refreshed. The Gemara derives from the word וינפש, and was refreshed, that upon the exit of Shabbos, the neshama yeseira, the extra soul that enters a person when Shabbos commences, leaves a person. The expression of the Gemara is וי נפש, woe to the soul, i.e. that the neshama yeseira has departed. The obvious question is, why does the Gemara derive the concept that one has a neshama yeseira on Shabbos from an expression that has a negative connotation? Would it have not been more appropriate to extol the positive aspect of the neshama yeseira, rather than focus on its absence? I believe that the answer to this question can be found in the juxtaposition of this verse with the verse that follows. It is said: ויתן אל משה ככלתו לדבר אתו בהר סיני, when He finished speaking to him on Mount Sinai, He gave Moshe…. The Gemara states that the crowns the Jewish People received upon accepting the Torah were taken away from them when they worshipped the Golden Calf. Nonetheless, it is said that Moshe Rabbeinu returns those crowns to the Jewish People every Shabbos. This, then, is the meaning of the Gemara that states וי נפש, woe to the soul, i.e. that the neshama yeseira has departed. The Jews sinned by worshiping the Golden Calf, and this caused them to lose their crowns. The crowns were a reward for their willingness to accept the Torah. Similarly, when a Jew accepts the Shabbos, he receives an extra soul, i.e. a crown that he adorns himself with on the day that Hashem’s Kingship is manifested. When Shabbos ends, that reward, the extra soul, is removed and the Jew begins again the struggle with his Evil Inclination that lasts until the next Shabbos. Moshe Rabbeinu, however, was unique that he reached the level of an angel, and Moshe was given the crowns that were taken from the Jewish People. On Shabbos, Hashem affords us the opportunity to regain our former glory. Let us use the Shabbos wisely, by acting in a manner befitting of kings.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 16 - Neshamah Yeseira for Nusach Ashkenaz

From Shabbos: Taam HaChaim Vayakhel 5765. For more inspirational thoughts on Shabbos and other topics, please visit
At the end of Lecho Dodi, we recite the words בואי בשלום עטרת בעלה גם בשמחה ובצהלה; enter in peace, O crown of her husband, even in joy and good cheer. This is the version of those who pray Nusach Ashkenaz. Those who pray Nusach Sefard, however, recite the words גם ברנה ובצהלה, even in joyous song and good cheer. What is the meaning for this discrepancy? Rabbi Yitzchak Sender in the Commentators Shabbos writes that the Gemara states that the Divine Presence is not manifest where there is sadness. The Divine Presence only exists where there is joy and proof of this is that Elisha the Prophet called for music to be played to eliminate his sadness. Nusach Sefard maintains that in order to acquire joy, we must sing, as song stirs the soul and uplifts a person, preparing him to be worthy of the Divine presence. Nusach Ashkenaz, however, posits that the joy that one must feel is catalyzed through the presence of the Neshama Yeseira, the extra soul that one receives every Shabbos. Once we experience this additional soul, we can be assured that we will maintain a state of joy, and we can greet the Divine Presence on Shabbos with joy.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 16 - Nishmas and the Neshamah Yeseira

From Shabbos: Taam HaChaim Balak 5765. For more inspirational thoughts on Shabbos and other topics, please visit
In the Commentators’ Shabbos Prayers, Rabbi Yitzchak Sender quotes various reasons why we recite the prayer of Nishmas on Shabbos. One reason is that on Shabbos, a Jew is given a נשמה יתירה, an extra soul, and נשמת means soul. The Seder HaYom adds that on Shabbos we are endowed with an extra soul, so we add praises to Hashem for everything He does for us. Rabbi Shlomo from Germaiza writes that we proclaim that both the extra soul and the spirit that is the essence of the body bless and praise the Name of Hashem. The Tur notes that Nishmas is recited after the prayer of אז ישיר, which focuses on the redemption from Egypt. Similarly, Nishmas contains expressions of praise for Hashem who liberated us from the Egyptian bondage.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 16 - Experiencing the Neshamah Yeseira

The author of the Chaye Adam writes in his Sefer Zichru Toras Moshe that one who immerses in the Mikvah before Shabbos will feel the נשמה יתירה, the extra soul that a Jew receives every Shabbos.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 16 - Neshamah Yeseira, a spiritual state of intoxication

From the original Daf Notes Eiruvin 62
The Gemara states that it is common to have drunkenness on Shabbos. Similarly, we find that the Kohanim should bless the congregation in the Shacharis Tefillah on Simchas Torah, because it is common for people to be drunk at the time of praying the Mussaf Tefillah. It is interesting to note that the Gemara in Shabbos states that everyone agrees that the Jewish People received the Torah on Shabbos. Following the receiving of the Torah, it is said that the great people saw Hashem and they ate and they drank. This is difficult to understand, because how is it possible that the Jewish People received the Torah and then acted in such a brazen manner? To answer this question, we must understand what occurred at Sinai. The Medrash states that the Jewish People were so overwhelmed with the revelation that their souls left them. The Gemara states that in the future there will not be any physical consumption of food and drink. Rather, the righteous will sit with crowns on their heads and bask in the Divine Presence. We also find that it is said regarding the angels who visited Avraham that they ate. The Medrash states that it only appeared as if they were eating. We can therefore suggest that when it said by Sinai that the great people ate and drank, it means that that they were like angels and it only looked as if they were eating and drinking. Similarly, on Shabbos, one receives an extra soul, and it is because of this soul that it appears that one is intoxicated, when in reality one is conducting himself on a higher spiritual level.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 16 - Neshamah Yeseira, one step at a time

From Shabbos: Taam HaChaim Nitzavim-Vayeilech 5766. For more inspirational thoughts on Shabbos and other topics, please visit
In the Shabbos Zemiros of כל מקדש שביעי, we recite the words: פוסעים בו פסיעה קטנה, who walk on it with short strides. The Halacha is that one should not take long strides on the Shabbos, and even during the week one should not take long strides as taking long strides diminishes ones eyesight. One must wonder why this is so. It would seem that one should rush everywhere on Shabbos, as certainly one would only be rushing to study Torah, pray, or delight in the Shabbos. Is it possible that the Chachamim were concerned that one who rushes on Shabbos would rush to work or to perform forbidden labor? Perhaps we can suggest that the words פוסעים בו פסיעה קטנה alludes to the idea that although on Shabbos one receives a neshama yeseira, an extra soul, one should not think that it is simple to absorb all the holiness of the Shabbos day. Rather, one must proceed slowly, savoring the beauty and sanctity of the Shabbos prayers, the Torah one studies on Shabbos, and all of the Shabbos delights. For this reason the Shabbos prayers and meals are divided up throughout the day, as on Shabbos one proceeds from one level of sanctity to a higher level.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 16 - Shabbos is the most treasured gift from HaShem

From Shabbos: Taam HaChaim Bamidbar 5764. For more inspirational thoughts on Shabbos and other topics, please visit
There are many aspects to Shabbos, and I believe that it is most appropriate to begin with the statement of the Gemara that explains the concept of Shabbos. The Gemara in Shabbos 10b states: Rav bar Mechasya said in the name of Rav Chama bar Guria who said in the name of Rav: One who bestows a gift upon his friend must inform him of the gift, as it is said: לדעת כי אני ה מקדשכם, to know that I am HaShem Who makes you holy. We have a proof of this idea from a Baraisa. It is said: לדעת כי אני ה מקדשכם, to know that I am HaShem Who makes you holy. HaShem told Moshe: I have a beautiful gift in my treasure house and its name is Shabbos. I desire to bestow the Shabbos on the Jewish People. Go and notify them of this gift. It is evident from this Gemara that the essence of Shabbos is that it is a gift from HaShem to us. How are we to understand this? Is not the entire Torah a gift from Hashem to the Jewish People? Perhaps the answer to this question can be found in the words of the Gemara itself. HaShem told Moshe that He desired to bestow the gift of Shabbos upon the Jewish People. Yet, first HaShem wanted the Jews to be informed as to the nature of the gift. The concept of Shabbos is that I am HaShem Who makes you holy. Once the Jewish People would know that Shabbos is a Day of Holiness, they would be deserving of receiving this beautiful gift. It is worth noting that the Torah that one studies on Shabbos is more significant than the Torah one studies during the week. Thus, although Torah itself is a gift, one can reach a higher level in Torah study on Shabbos, which is a gift from HaShem's Treasure House.

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Daf Yomi - Beitzah 16 - Shabbos and Fear of Heaven in HaShem's Treasure House

From Shabbos: Taam HaChaim Bereishis 5765. For more inspirational thoughts on Shabbos and other topics, please visit
The word בראשית contains the words ירא שבת, one who fears Shabbos. The first thing that every Jew must know is ראשית חכמה יראת ה, the beginning of wisdom is fear of Hashem. The Targum Yerushalmi renders the word בראשית as בחוכמא, with wisdom. Hashem created the world with wisdom, and that wisdom, explains Rabbeinu Bachye, is alluded to in the verse ראשית חכמה יראת ה, the beginning of wisdom is fear of Hashem. How is this fear of Hashem reflected on Shabbos? The Maggid of Mezritch said that one could tell if he observed Shabbos properly. If a Jew demonstrated יראת שמים, fear of heaven, on Shabbos, this is a sign that he observed Shabbos faithfully. The Maggid explained that this idea is alluded to in the verse that states: יראת ה' היא אוצרו, fear of Hashem-that is [man’s] treasure. The Gemara states that Shabbos is a מתנה טובה יש לי בבית גנזי, a precious gift in Hashem’s treasure house. Both fear of heaven and Shabbos are located in Hashem’s treasure house, so it follows that if a person fears Hashem on Shabbos, it is a sign that he has properly observed the Shabbos.

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