Shiur 10/23/18 – Beitza 38b


Beitza 38b

1- We continued the complicated Sugya about the nature of Techumin.

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The crux of the discussion: Is תחומין defined as a monetary issue or does it fall into the category of issur?

The answer to this question would also clarify as to why when one takes water or salt from her friend on Yom Tov and uses it to create a dough, the Mishna says that this dough or bread can be moved only up to the Techum of both; the flour and water, owners.

The question is why the small amount of water is not בטל to the flour?

Now, if Techumin is a pure monetary issue (meaning that it is predicated on the ownership of the item at the onset of Yom Tov), then the Mishnah is understood: The dough is owned by two people: The provide of the flour guy (majority) and the  water (minority) is owned by another person. And since this is a money case  (non issur)   the even the minute water amount is still ‘money’ and it cannot be בטל inside the dough. (Pardon the pun).

On the other hand if Techumin is only an issur issue, then we need to understand why the there is no ביטול in such a case. Why should the minute amount and value of the water not be בטל , and thus the dough should have only one ‘owner’?

2- The difficulty in understanding the dialogue of Reb Abba, the Israeli אמוראים mocking of his response, the explanation…

3- We mentioned the great Rabbi of Salonika, Reb Shmuel Di Medina. See here and here. Also known as the  מהרשד”ם -Maharashda”m.

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From the library of the son of the Ksav Sofer in Pressburg

His response (YD # 117)  was to a question concerning a group of Jews in the ‘shmatte’ industry. To acquire wool to weave into material they would go out to the farms and purchase bales of wool from non-Jewish shepherds. To avoid increasing the price by bidding against each other they agreed to a maximum price they would offer to the farmers.

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Occasionally, one fellow would make a מחאה that he is unhappy with this arrangement as he would be willing to pay above the agreed price.

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The question was, if his opinion, being the minority one among this group of shmatte dealers, is בטל!!

See here where he writes that although we generally follow the rule of אחרי רבים להטות, meaning that we always follow the majority, and an item is בטל ברוב, in monetary issue we do not follow this rule. [There is a lot more in this תשובה].

4- The Gemore says that one אמורא  told his friend משה! and then states his opinion. Rashi says it is like saying “I swear by משה רבינו  that I am right”.

We mentioned Rambam that writes that it is the custom among Jews to swear in such a manner.

Sefer Hamitzvot, Positive 7

Therefore, one may not swear in the name of any other creation, such as angels or stars. An exception is where the subject [i.e. G‑d] is obviously omitted, such as one who swears in “the truth of the sun,” but means “the true G‑d of [i.e. Who created] the sun.” It is in this manner that our nation swears in the name of Moshe — in order to gain honor through [mentioning] his name. It is as if the person uttered the oath, “in the G‑d of Moshe,” or “in the One Who sent Moshe.


Shiur 10/16/18 – Beitza 38a


Beitza 38a

1- We concluded the topic of Breira with two humorous stories.

According to the doctrine of Breira, subsequent decisions can under certain circumstances be retroactively applied to change or clarify the nature and Jewish-law consequences of prior events.

The busy Australian photographer who said “I am so busy that I’m losing my mind. As a matter of fact I’m just coming back from a wedding that I have tomorrow”…..

The Crown Heights yungerman that attends all LeChaims and weddings etc and perhaps partakes to excess. The next morning, having no recollection of what transpired, he checks COL to find out where he was the night before…..

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2- We discussed the case of the Chacham scheduled to give a speech but it is unknown as to where he will actually deliver it.

3- The Gemara discussed the case of the “Patom”. A farmer that feeds animals to their max and then sells them. The question is if he sells an animal on Yom Tov can it be moved out of the Techum of the Patom.

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We discussed briefly the controversy regarding animal force feeding and foie gras.

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See here a recent article on the Halachik aspect of this practice. Search this blog for an October 2018 post. [Please note: not everything in this blog is Kodesh Kodoshim].

4- We began to learn an interesting and unique Sugya.

Unique in the sense that the great commentaries express a perplexity on how to understand the simple meaning of the words!

P’nei Yehoshua: The Gemara is a ‘sealed book’.

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Chasam Sofer: This is a tough piece of Gemara. He who can explain it will be designated an ‘expert’.

5- For starters we presented the following 2 questions:

A- Mr. Chaim has a piece of non-Kosher meat that he purchased for $2 a lb. He enters a friend’s house and the treif piece of meat falls into a pot full of Kosher meat.

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Now, there is enough Kosher meat to be מבטל the non-Kosher piece. So eating the entire pot would be permitted. (not at one time and not by one person etc). Y”D 109 ,1.

Chaim, now demands that his friend pay him for his lost non-Kosher meat. His friend agrees to pay him, but only $2, which is the amount Chaim paid for it.  

Chaim claims that his non-Kosher meat has been ‘Kosherized’, and Kosher meat is valued at, say, $8 a lb.

Who is right?

B- Chaim loses a $10 bill. His friend finds it and places it into his wallet where he has many $10 of his own.

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When Chaim demands to get his $10 back his friend innocently says “your $10 was בטל in my wad of $10 bills”……

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The answer to the second question is that obviously, the rules of ביטול do not apply to monetary cases.

The first question is a bit tougher. Chaim will definitely get his pound of meat – the question is at what price. See Pri Megodim 109. MZ 1.

6- Story of the fellow that purchased and  paid for 3 הדסים. When he came home he realized that he got 4. When binding his Lulav he chose 3 of the four and he used the Lulav.

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Was he יוצא? If we apply ביטול, then the one Hadas, that did not belong to him, was בטל in the three.  

But if there no ביטול  is such cases, perhaps he was not יוצא !

7 – Now what about Techumin in a case of the flour belonging to one person and the water to another?

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The Mishna says that a dough made from ingredients of these two people is deemed, in regard to Techumin,  to be ‘owned’ by both. Like partners.

The question is why? The water is בטל to the flour! So the supplier of the water should not be a partner.

Or maybe yes, since in regards to monetary issues we do not say ביטול?

To be continued…


Shiur 10/09/18 Beitza 37b (3)



Beitza 37b (3)

1- We discussed the case of 2 partners that jointly owned a bottle of wine. Yom Tov morning they decided to split the wine.

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Now, each partner made an Eiruv that allows him to carry an additional 2,000 Amos outside the city limits. The issue is that each partner made his own Eiruv in a different direction.

Until the bottle was divided, meaning prior to their partnership dissolving, the bottle could only be carried to the Techumin limits that they both have.

But now that the bottle was split, each wants to carry his share to his limit.

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The question is a fundamental one concerning B’riera. See here.

When partners split up do we say that the share each received was always “his”.

Or one can say that until the breakup, each owned 50% and this 50% is mixed with his partner’s 50%.  Thus, when splitting we do not know if he really received his ‘own’ 50%.

See previous shiur Beitza 37b (2).  

2- Our Gemara discusses the topic of סוף הטומאה לצאת. We discussed it at length on Daf 10a.

The case of Breira quoted by our Gemara concerning ‘sof ha’tumah lotzeis’. The path of a deceased body on the way to burial is considered ‘tamei’ rendering all overhead rooms, halls, arches and doors to be tamei. If Breira applies here then by choosing a particular path after the person has dies this choice is valid retroactively and all other paths are tahor.

3- We had a heated discussion concerning the opinion of Rav Yochanan that brothers that inherit property (or anything else) it is considered as if they “purchased their portion” from each other.

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The reason for this is, as above, we do not apply Breira. So one does not really know if the portion he received is ‘really’ his. It’s just that there is no other way to split an inheritance other than each taking 50%.

So, being that we don’t know what the true split is, we assume that it is considered as if they “purchased their portion” from each other.

Now, in general, when Yovel approaches, all purchased fields return to the seller.

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The ‘seller’ in our case of two brothers splitting an estate is….each brother. So the entire estate goes back to the ‘estate’.

We were unsure exactly how that works. Need to research it.

4- We mentioned the Gemara in Gitin 48a, where it questions the result of this logic.

א”ר יוסף אי לאו דא”ר יוחנן קנין פירות כקנין הגוף דמי לא מצא ידיו ורגליו בבית המדרש דא”ר אסי א”ר יוחנן האחין שחלקו לקוחות הן ומחזירין זה לזה ביובל

Bikurim need to be brought from a field that belongs to you, excluding fruits from fields that have been purchased, since the field will need to be returned at Yovel.

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So Bikurim can only be brought from fields that have been inherited.

According to Reb Yochanan, only a בן יחיד the son of a בן יחיד (going up all the way to the ראש השבט) can bring bikurim!