Shiur 11/21/17 – Beitza 27b – 28a

Beitza 27b – 28a

1-  The Mishnah discusses laws of buying a portion of an animal to be slaughtered for, or on Yom Tov. Clarifying the the phrase in the Mishnah אין נמנין is explained to mean that it is not permitted to set a price for an animal on Yom Tov. Rav presents a method to set the price of an animal without violating the prohibition, by placing a second animal and comparing side by side.


2-We discussed as to why the Mishna needs to state this Halacha when apparently all type of commerce is prohibited on Yom Tov?

The תפארת ישראל notes that business discussions are prohibited because we are afraid that a person may come to write down calculations.

Top line, Right side

So what does this Mishna add to what is known from many other places?

His answer: We might have thought that this is not a problem when we are dealing with a group of people.

As We find (Shabbos 20a) that a Korban Pesach may be lowered into an oven as Shabbos begins, and we do not prohibit it despite the standard concern that a person might stir the coals. This is because the Pesach is always brought by a group of people, and if one might forget and try to stir the coals, others will remind him not to do it on Shabbos. Thanks to Eli Chitrik for pointing out לא קורין לאור הנר וכו

 ודוקא אחד אבל ב’ קורין ביחד וכו” .

Here, too, perhaps mentioning money among a group would be allowed, because the chance this may lead to writing would be alleviated by the fact that we have a group.

We might have thought that this is not a problem when we are dealing with a group of people.

The novel ruling of the Mishnah is that even here we do not allow mentioning money.

3- In our Gemara we see that Rashi writes that the prohibition of conducting business on Shabbos and Yom Tov is derived from a Posuk in ‘Ezra’ although the פסוק is in Nechemia!

טו בַּיָּמִים הָהֵמָּה רָאִיתִי בִיהוּדָה דֹּרְכִים גִּתּוֹת בַּשַּׁבָּת, וּמְבִיאִים הָעֲרֵמוֹת וְעֹמְסִים עַל הַחֲמֹרִים, וְאַף יַיִן עֲנָבִים וּתְאֵנִים וְכָל מַשָּׂא, וּמְבִיאִים יְרוּשָׁלַ‍ִם בְּיוֹם הַשַּׁבָּת, וָאָעִיד בְּיוֹם מִכְרָם צָיִד. טז וְהַצֹּרִים יָשְׁבוּ בָהּ מְבִיאִים דָּאג וְכָל מֶכֶר, וּמֹכְרִים בַּשַּׁבָּת לִבְנֵי יְהוּדָה וּבִירוּשָׁלָ‍ִם. יז וָאָרִיבָה אֵת חֹרֵי יְהוּדָה, וָאֹמְרָה לָהֶם: “מָה הַדָּבָר הָרָע הַזֶּה אֲשֶׁר אַתֶּם עֹשִׂים וּמְחַלְּלִים אֶת יוֹם הַשַּׁבָּת? יח הֲלוֹא כֹה עָשׂוּ אֲבֹתֵיכֶם, וַיָּבֵא אֱלֹהֵינוּ עָלֵינוּ אֵת כָּל הָרָעָה הַזֹּאת וְעַל הָעִיר הַזֹּאת, וְאַתֶּם מוֹסִיפִים חָרוֹן עַל יִשְׂרָאֵל לְחַלֵּל אֶת הַשַּׁבָּת!”. {פ}

We discussed the gloss written by Reb Akiva Eiger about this Rashi.

In short: The two books of Ezra and Nechemia, despite them being printed and labeled today as two separate ספרים,  are in actuality only one ספר of the 24 in the תנ”ך.


This single ספר has the story of Ezra as well as Nechemia. So it would make sense for Nechemia to have his own ספר.

The Gemara in Sanhedrin, 93b addresses this issue and explains that Nechemia was punished and didn’t merit to have his ספר called in his own name.

Sanhedrin 93b – Copy

Hence, all references in Sha’s to a פסוק in (what today we call) נחמיה are written as עזרא.

The partition of Ezra into two books is not of Jewish origin. Much like the partition of Shmuel into two books. The first time the split shows up in our mesorah, is in Venice, in the Bomberg edition of 1525.

The Alter Rebbe in אגרת התשובה  11 also refers a posuk in (what today we call) נחמיה as עזרא

ומה שמשבחים ומברכים את ה’: “חנון המרבה לסלוח”, “המרבה” דייקא, וכמו שכתוב בעזרא: “ורב לסלוח”, דהיינו שבמידת בשר ודם, אם יחטא איש לאיש וביקש ממנו מחילה ומחל לו ואחר כך חזר לסורו, קשה מאד שימחול לו שנית, ומכל שכן בשלישית ורביעית

The above is what Reb Akiva Eiger writes. ­­

3- The next Mishnah and Gemara talk about weighing food on Yom Tov.

Image result for guess weight

One interesting item is the prohibition for an expert butcher to lift a piece of meat and state its weight.

Image result for guess weight

I mentioned what my father A”H once told me that the late Rabbi Breuer of the KJ Kehilla related him. His brother Moshe being a professor of Semitic languages, on Shabbos, he refrained during קריאת התורה to look at the תרגום אונקלוס that is written in Aramaic……

4- We learnt the next piece of Gemara. It is an interesting story with Halachic ramifications.


Related image

The story relates of seven servings of fish were placed on the table in the house of Rebbi, and five of them ended up in the possession of Rebbi Chiya while only two made it into the hands of Rebbi Shimon b’Rebbi.

[Thank you Yankel Korolitzky who correctly pointed out that this Reb Chiya was not Rebbi’s son].

But Rebbi did indeed have a son name Chiya,  See  יבמות


(Note: We know that a Rebbi Chiya was the uncle of Rav – from the story with R Moshe Feinstein, who referred to the story of Rebbi Chiya asking Rebbi to give his nephew Rav smicha, which he did but excluded Bechoros.

And we know that Rav was a talmid of Rebbi.

So this R Chiya, who was clearly not Rebbis son, based on the text of the Gemara, (“R Chiya, vR Shimon B’Rebbi”) perhaps it was the R Chiya who’s nephew Rav was a Talmud of Rebbi, and he would be getting fish from Rebbi, his contemporary, but not father…

Sanhedrin 5a

כי הוה נחית רבה בר חנה לבבל אמר ליה רבי חייא לרבי בן אחי יורד לבבל יורה יורה ידין ידין יתיר בכורות יתיר)

Rashi explains that Rebbi Chiya took five to his home without asking for permission to do so. Rebbi Shimon b’Rebbi was not upset that Rebbi Chiya took most of the fish, because he and Rebbi Chiya were friends.

We began talking on how the story above connects with the famous machlokes between Abaya and Rava about יאוש שלא מדעת.

Image result for lost item

In regards to cutting a handle into meat on Yom Tov, we also learned the somewhat unique way in which רבה בר רב הונא would cut and then send his meat in the hands of non-Jews.

Image result for triangular of meat

Which brings us to the question of the  תוספות רי”ד :

אמר רב הונא מורת לעשות סימן בבשר כי הא דרבה בר רב הונא מחתך לה אתלת קרנתא פירש המוהר סימן בבשר שלא יחלפנו הנושאו ורבה כשהי’ משלח בשר לביתו הי’ רגיל לעשות כל חתיכה בתלת קרנות וכבר הי’ מכירין אנשי ביתו שזה הי’ סימן שלו ובפ’ אלו מציאות פי’ שהיה עושה רבה סימן כשהיה שולחן ביד גוי ואינו נראה לי דאטו אם הי’ רוצה הנושאו להחליפו לא הי’ יודע לעשות גם הוא תלת קרנתא בחתיכה שלו שהיה רוצה להחליף בו ולא היה עושה סימן זה אלא בעבור העורבים דסביר אליה כרב דאמר בשר כיון שנעללם מן העין אסור דחיישי’ שמא החליפה העורבים ובעבור זה הי’ מסמנין על תלת קרנתא שמא יעלימו בני ביתו עינם ממנו ויאסר ועיין בפ’ אלו מציאות מהדורא קמא ובתשובות:

Interesting stuff next week IY”H.

Shiur 11/14/17 – Beitza 27b-28a

Beitza 27b-28a

The Beasts of Heath Strike Again Oh and a Dead Cow

1-  The Mishnah teaches that on Yom Tov one may not move:

  1. a) An animal that died.
  2. b) Challah that became טמא.

The Mishna relates that these two cases were asked by Reb Tarfon who entered the Beis Medrash and asked what the דין is from the חכמים sitting there and was told not to move either of them.

In principle, a permissible use would be to feed a dead carcass to his dogs. So why would one be prohibited from touching an animal that died on Shabbos or Yom Tov?

The answer is – Muktzah. Since this animal was not meant to die today. Thus the owner did not ‘prepare’ this for use – it was not מן המוכן

2- It follows, our Gemara notes, that the author of our Mishnah adopts R’ Yehudah’s position, accepting the principle of Muktzah, rather than the opinion of R’ Shimon. – ר שמעון דלית ליה מוקצה

We discussed Reb Shimon’s position at length in regards to Muktzah for there are cases where even he would agree to Muktzah. The classic case being fruits or vegetables that are put away for a long time.

The Gemara demonstrates how the Mishnah, that prohibits the touching of a dead animal,  could in fact be consistent with R’ Shimon’s opinion.

3- One way the Gemara suggests reconciling our Mishna with R Shimon, is to say that our Mishna is referring to קדשים, says זעירי.

Image result for sacred cow

A dead animal that is קדשים, cannot be fed to dogs. So even Reb Shimon would agree to prohibit moving the dead animal.

Rashi explains that although one may indeed transfer the holiness from קדשים unto money, in our case it would not work. Why?

The קדשים  animal needs to be appraised while it is still alive. Therefore dead animals cannot be transferred to money.

We mentioned the question of the פני יהושע. This story with his animal, on which Reb Tarfon was asked, obviously happened much after the חורבן since that’s when Reb Tarfon lived. So קדשים  would need to mean a בכור which can never be transferred anyway. So why didn’t Rashi just say that it meant a בכור?

We mentioned the ספר בארות המים that quotes an amazing story from the Sifri where it is clear that Reb Tarfon lived (at least part of his life) when there was a Beis Hamikdosh.

וכן ראה רבי טרפון מצוות הקהל בבית המקדש, שכן אמרו בירושלמי יומא (פ”א סוף ה”א

“ובני אהרן הכהנים יתקעו בחצוצרות (על הקרבנות) תמימין ולא בעלי מומין, דברי ר’ עקיבא

. אמר לו ר’ טרפון אקפח את בניי אם לא ראיתי אחי אמי חיגר באחת מרגליו עומד בעזרה בידו ותוקע.

אמר לו ר’ עקיבא: רבי! שמא לא ראית אלא בשעת הקהל ואני אומר בשעת קרבן”.

וחזר ר’ טרפון והודה לר’ עקיבא

. וכן מפורש בתוספתא (סוטה שם) שהמדובר בהקהל וכן הוא בספרי פ’ בהעלותך

לפי נוסחת הילק”ש שם.

In regard to the sounding -of the חצוצרות we find an argument between Reb Akiva and Reb Tarfon. Reb Akiva says that a Kohen that has a מום ר”ל cannot blow the חצוצרות.

Reb Tarfon tells Reb Akiva some sharp words and says “I remember my uncle that had a limp and he blew the  חצוצרות in the Beis Hamikdosh”.

Reb Akiva responds that perhaps his uncle didn’t blow it on Yom Tov when a בעל מום cannot blow the חצוצרות, but on הקהל when the rules are different?.

Reb Tarfon responded in amazement and recalls that it exactly as Reb Akiva said.

See the Sifri here.

4- We discussed the concept of  ‘אחשבי

Meaning that something the Torah gives importance to raises its level.

We spoke about Reb Yitzchok Elchonon Spektor. His life etc.

His idea: a מלאכה  when done by two people is not considered a מלאכה.

What about when they do a Mitzvah together? Does the Mitzvah cause it to be considered a מלאכה?

וגם בב׳ העושין להמצוה נחשבח עשייחן לקיום המצוה, וכיון לאחשביה רחמנא הוי ממילא ביה חשיבוח גם לענין ליהא שם מלאכה עליו להחחייב משום איסור שבח

באר יצחק- שדה צופים

שנים שעשוה במלאכה שהתורה אחשבי’.

5- We spoke about the מנהג  of many to say second chapter of Mishnayos Shabbos Friday night before ברכו, and others say כגונא .


Shiur 11/07/2017 – Beitza 27b

Beitza 27a-b

1- We spoke about the laws Bechor.

Our Gemara discusses the reluctance of some בכור experts to rule regarding a מום on Yom Tov, and that we don’t necessarily take owner’s (Kohen’s) word for it, and he may have to bring proof and or witnesses that he didn’t cause the Mum. We also learned the source of the prohibition of – גרמא – causing the mum.

Now these experts lived in בבל so it would seem obvious that בכור laws apply in Chutz L’Oretz.


As an introduction to next week, we introduced the special prohibition of burning impure kodshim on Yom Tov, from a גזירת הכתוב.


גרסאות ברמב”ם  2


We spoke about the Rambam where he seems to write that the laws of Bechor do not apply outside of Eretz Yisroel!


Many Rishonim argued on the Rambam bringing proof from many places in Shas, including our Gemara as one source, that this mitzvah does indeed apply in  חוץ לארץ.


We mentioned the Kesef Mishna who writes that the manuscripts of the Rambam these ראשונים possessed was in error. See here as well.


3- Mentioned the various manuscripts of the Ramban and the authoritative one that the Rambam kept in his possession that he edited as needed.

One famous correction, which originally raised much controversy against the Rambam, was his take on the meaning of דברי סופרים

Good read on this topic.


4- We spoke about the fact that once a Bechor is born the YIsroel needs to take care of it only for a limited time. Thereafter the Kohen must accept it and take care of it until it becomes a בעל מום.  


הכהן מוכרח לקבלו.

5- We reviewed the Alter Rebbe’s ‘sale document’ of the בכור to a goy and the story of the מום in the ear of a Bechor in Liadi!

סדר מכירת חמץ לבהמה המבכרת

6- We related the question posed decades ago to Reb Moshe Feinstein as to why he joined the מחלוקת in regard to artificial insemination. His response was based on the story with Rav, who was given Semicha by Rebbi, but excluded Semicha to rule in cases of a Bechor.

The point being that once a person has the knowledge and Smicha ‘sitting on the fence’ is not an option.

Shiur 10/31/17 – Beitza 27a

Beitza 27a.

1-Our Gemara offers two options on how to define an expert’s opinion after he inspects a Bechor and ascertains that a blemish he spotted is indeed permanent:

A- His ruling ‘creates’ the היתר. Meaning that his opinion renders the animal a Ba’al Mum and thus permissible to be shechted and consumed.

B- His opinion just reveals to us what the status of this animal is.

The practical difference is whether one may inspect such an animal on YomTov. If the expert is actually creating the היתר (option a above) the Gemora says is prohibited since it is like מתקן מנא.  

2- The Gemara tries to understand how a Tana of a previous generation agrees with a much younger Tana of a later generation.

3- We mentioned the Sicha of the Rebbe in regards to Reb Leib Sara’s. The Rebbe said that in the famous book ‘Reziel Hamalach’ (which he mentioned is a segula to have one in a Jewish home) which was printed way before Reb Leib Sora’s times (and was in manuscript form hundreds of years before that) there is a תפילה  ‘for the opening of the heart of Leib Ben Sora!

See here.

Page 58.

More on this Sicha ahead.

4- We learned the text of the Shulchan Aruch concerning as to what type of מום is considered permanent. We find a difference between Ashkenazim and Sfardim.

Image result for france vs spain
שו”ע יו”ד שט ב. רמ”א

5- From there we moved to a case where one shechted a Bechor and only then called the expert (after the fact) and the expert confirms that it indeed had a blemish before the shchita.

Reb Meir prohibits the animal and it must be buried.   As mentioned in 1-A above the ruling creates the היתר  and needs to be done before the שחיטה.

Image result for expert opinion

See here: שו”ע שי א.

6- We discussed the case of a Sefer Torah that was written on parchment made from such an animal.

We mentioned the Netziv in his book  משיב דבר take on this question.


In passing we mentioned the ongoing argument as to why the famous Yeshiva in Volozhin was closed by the Russian authorities in 1893. (see also R Chaim of Volozhin)

7- We concluded with the rest of the fascinating Sicha where the Rebbe suggested that Reb Leib Sora’s and the Shepole Zeida were the same person.

Leib Sora and Shpole Zeide

Seems the Rebbe received a mountain of mail from the many descendents of both there greats.


At the next farbrengen the Rebbe added that until he hears from a reliable person or testimony that there are two מציבות showing that they were indeed two separate people……. It possible to say that they were the same person.


He ended off saying and שלום על ישראל…….!