Shiur 05/23/16 Beitzah 9a-b

Beitzah 9a-b.

1- New topic of moving a ladder on Yom Tov to a bird coop (for the purpose of taking a dove to be consumed on Yom Tov) using a small ladder as opposed to an “attic ladder” which is longer and heavier.

Heavy Lader

Beis Shamai prohibiting and Beis Hillel permitting. The issue here is that moving any type of  ladder on Yom Tov gives the appearance of a person on the way to repair a roof which of of course prohibited. The simple explanation to Beis Hillel’s ruling is that a ‘coop ladder’ is not used for roof repairs.

Mini Ladder

The Gemore questions if Beis Shamai would permit the use of this ladder in an area where no one is around – like a closed off courtyard.

Light Ladder

2- Gemore discusses the concept of Mar’is Ha’ayin – Anything prohibited by the Rabanan because of Mar’is ha’Ayin is prohibited even in the innermost chambers. The example cited is hanging wet clother out to dry in the sun where one can mistakenly think that they were washed on Shabbos. .

3- Story of the children of Reb Chiya that while on a business trip were asked to rule in regard to a ladder on Yom Tov. Upon their return their father tells them that their ruling was incorrect.

We mentioned that the Gemore in Brochos mentioned that they forgot some of their learning due to their immersion in the world of business!!!

4-  Having concluded the lengthy Gemore (2a-9a) that extended from the first Mishna (Beitza Shenolda Byom Tov) we spoke about Reb Yisroel Iserlin, baal Terumas Hadeshen, the great rabbi who is the source of many Halochos and Minhogim we observe today.

One of his students, author of the Leket Yosher,  Reb Joseph (Joselein) writes that 3 times a year his teacher, Reb Yisroel, would invite his student to his meal where he would pose a Torah riddle.

Here is one riddle:

If a chicken flew over a tree on Yom Tov and caused an apple to fall off, that apple would be prohibited to eat. But, if at the same this chicken laid an egg, then both the apple and the egg would be permitted!


How is that possible?


The answer, in short-  If this chicken shook a tree during ‘bein hash’moshos’ (sofek yom, sofek lai’lo) the apple cannot be eaten because perhaps it was already Yom Tov. Now, as we learned on Daf 7a, (Fertilized) Chickens never lay eggs during daylight hours.

Thus, if simultaneously with the fall of the apple the chicken laid an egg…. it must have still been day (not night) . Therefore we can be certain that the apple too fell off the tree NOT on Yom Tov.

We mentioned that some took exception to this idea. “Something like ‘bein hash’moshos’ that all scholars have established as a ‘sofek’ cannot resolved by a chicken laying an egg…….”

Shiur 05/17/16 Beitza 8b

Beitzah 8b.

  1. Our Gemara continues to submit answers to reconcile the seemingly contradictory rules allowing one to shecht any animal on Yom Tov while prohibiting one to shecht a Koi. (see last week’s notes as to the parameters of this unique animal).

2- Reb Romi suggests the following reason:


A Koi, is a sofek chaya sofek behaima. What is the practical difference?  Twofold. A behaima does not require Kisui Hadam but its ‘chailev’ is prohibited. On the other hand a chaya does require Kisui Hadam but the entire animal can be eaten. There is no issur ‘chailev’ with a chaya.

The Chochomim ruled that since a Koi is a sofek we must be accept the stringency of both:  Kisui Hadom is required (perhaps it is a chaya)  and abstain from eating the chailev of the Koi (perhaps it is a behaima).

Now to our issue of shechting a Koi on Yom Tov- allowing one to shecht and cover the blood of  Koi on Yom Tov would send a message that the Chachomim have concluded that the Koi is indeed a ‘Chaya’. For would it still be a sofek, then the Chachomim  would not have allowed the shochet to cover the blood on Yom Tov since there are issues with using earth to cover blood (even when the earth is prepared before Yom Tov). So they ruled not to allow to cover the blood of a Koi on Yom Tov. And since the Koi’s blood cannot be covered the ruling must be to prohibit the shechting!


3- This Yom Tov rule does not negate the shechting of a Koi on a regular weekday since there is no issue then in covering the Koi’s blood despite it being a sofek, as the labor involved in the covering is not problematic on a weekday.
Also mentioned (tosfos d”h Tani) that the Chachamim do in fact have the koach to uproot a mitzvas asseh when to do so one just do nothing (shev v’al taaseh), and also on this point mentioned the Taz  – …the Chachamim cannot completely uproot the mitzva – (you can blow Shofar next year).
4- So we moved on to the next piece which discusses one that shechted Erev Yom Tov and didn’t manage to perform Kisui Hadom until after it became dark. Ditto with one that prepared dough for baking but did not manage to separate a piece of for Challa.
The Gemara states one opinion that in the case of the Challah one is permitted to do it on Yom Tov. But in the case of the Kisui Hadom one may not! We discussed the rationale for this ruling.
5- We once again came across “Avuha di’Shmuel’ – Shmuel’s father. We discussed the story many times. Found this on line. See here in Hebrew.
6- We spoke about the Mitzvah of Challah as it is performed today outside Israel. Since it is only MideRabonon one may bake the dough, eat from it and leave a piece at the end for Challah See here !
7- Can one bake it all prior to separating a piece of Challah on Yom Tov? Mentioned the Mordechai that says there is a problem to bake the entire batter on Yom Tov. Why? Because part of it, the Challah, will not be eaten so one may not bake it on Yom Tov. See here.

Shiur 05/10/16 – Beitza 8a (1)

Beitza 8a (1)

1- We spoke about understanding the life style in the times of the Gemara. Home floors were the actual ground with no wood or even a stone finish. It was common for an occasional ‘redo’ to even out the surface by pouring a fresh layer of sand.


We mentioned the Shul in Curacao in the Netherland Antilles that has beach sand on the floor.

2- Our Gemara speaks about a bucket of sand that was brought into a house Erev Yom Tov for general purposes including the use of freshening up the floor. Can one use this sand for Kisui Hadam?

3- We spoke in the past about the permissibility of ‘shechting’ on Yom Tov. Now the Gemara brings a Mishna that a KOI cannot be slaughter to eat on Yom Tov.

Japanese Koi Fish

4- We discussed the four way machlokes as to what is a KOI. Basically it is a particular  animal that we are in doubt if it it a chaya or behaima. Some say it is a water buffalo. 


a- Offspring of a he goat and a deer. (Tzvia/gazelle?)

Cervus elaphus LC0266.jpg

b- Offspring of a she goat and a deer.


c- An animal of a mixed breed that we are in doubt of its status.

Chinkara at Ranthambore.jpg

d- A unique animal that we are in doubt of its status.

Resting on Yom Tov

5- The Gemara originally accepts the premise that the Mitzvah of resting on Yom Tov is only a ‘Lo Sa’se’ (negative) and not also an ‘Ese’ (positive). Thus the positive commandment to perform  the Mitzvas Ese  of Kisui Hadam would permit the digging for fresh earth (thereby transgressing the Lo Sa’se of Yom Tov) based of the rule of Ese Doche Lo Sa’se. 

The the Gemore reverses itself saying that Yom Tov is both an Ese and lo Sa’se.

6- We spoke about the Ramban who offers a logical explanation as to why Ese Doche Lo Sa’se. (Ahava and Yirah),

7- The Alter Rebbe’s question: If Ese is greater than a Lo Sa’se why is the Teshuva for an Ese eisier than for a Lo Sa’se. See answer here. Igeres Ha’Teshuva Chapter 1.

8- The Jewish history of Curacao and it’s place in the saving of thousand of Jews during WWII and it’s Chabad connection. See here.

579079_722022781157890_159182409_n (2)

Harav Avrohom Tzvi Landa, Harav Chaim Meir A”H Bukiet,  Rabbi Avraham Garfinkel A”H, students of the Lubavitcher Yeshiva in Otwock, fleeing the Nazis after the invasion of Poland in WWII, arrive in Kobe, Japan. They would later make their way to Shanghai, China and remain there for the duration of the war.



Shiur 05/13/16 – Beitza 7b

Beitza 7b. (2)

1- Shechting on Yom Tov.

Our Gemara discusses the issue of covering the blood after the shechita in a case where loose earth was not prepared before Yom Tov.

Beis Shamai has no issue in allowing one to dig up some earth to cover the blood. On the other hand, Beis Hillel rules that one should not shecht if loose gravel is not available.

All agree however, that (despite the Halocha that one should not) if one did shecht he should use a shovel to dig and perform the Mitzvah of ‘Kisui HaDam‘.


2- We mentioned the two Rebbes of Abaya. Rabba and Rav Yosef. [Rabba’s actual name was Rabba bar Nachmeni]

The story (Brachos 48a)  of a young Abaya and Rava studying under Rabba. They were asked by Rava “who do we Bentch to”? And they responded to “Rachamono”. “And where is Rachamono” he asked them? Abaya pointed to the the roof. Rava went outside and pointed to the sky.

Upon seeing these two youngster’s pointing he predicted that they will be great schoolrs one day. “As the popular saying goes: BOTZIN BOTZIN MI’KATFEI YEDI’A– [the quality of] pumpkins is known by testing the sap from which they are formed, i.e. future Talmidei Chachamim are recognizable at a young age

3-We discussed the four issues in digging for earth on Yom Tov:


a- Choresh – plowing.

b- Tochen – grinding.

c- Boneh- building. (digging a hole in preparation to build)

d- Muktze.

4- Rav Yehuda’s ruling that the above allowable digging is only if the shovel was already in the ground. Our Gemara attempts to figure out which of the four issues above does Rav Yehuda’s ruling alleviate.

5- We began the Tosfos concerning the materials that can be used to cover the blood of a fowl or Chaya. The Torah states explicitly: Ofor – meaning earth. Can ashes be used?

Story of the poor guy who was in a desert with no earth to use (how’s that?). His only solution is to grind down a gold coin into dust and use it to perform Kisui Hadom!

Or if one is on a boat with no earth available. Can he burn his clothes and use the ashes?

More next week.