Shiur Sukkah 34b – 02/23/2022


Sukkah 34b

1st. Adar 22, 5782. February 23, 2022

 1- We continued with the  מחלוקת amongst the ראשונים on how to reconcile a seeming contradiction of the last two Mishnayos if a הדס that has its top cut off is Kosher. 

We discussed the famous text of the ראב”ד where, to bolster his opinion, he invokes the  רוח הקודש that ‘appeared in our בית מדרש‘.

How did we get the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) | Biblical Truth

 2- We discussed the issue concerning  the פסולים of the Daled Minim as they apply to the first day of Sukkos versus the other 6 days. 

לכם –  1 –  ownership. As opposed to borrowing or stealing. 

Sukkah 36: Lulav in the Sukkah | Torah In Motion

2- לקיחה תמה – Meaning that one needs to take all of the four מינים.  If one has 1, 2 or 3 it is as if he has none. 

3- לקיחה תמה – Meaning that the four מינים need to be ‘whole’. If it’s missing a piece, חסר,  it’s פסול. 

4 – הדר – they need to be beautiful. At the very least the אתרוג. 

Traditional Jewish Holiday Sukkot. Jewish torah Lulav date palm, Etrog citron, Arava willow and Hadas myrtle isolated on transparent. Modern poster, j Stock Vector Image & Art - Alamy

Are the above פסול only of the first day or for the rest of the days as well?

The 4 above are discussed in Tosafos at the beginning of our פרק. 

 There are many others, and the issue is which ones apply on the first day only and which ones apply for the entire Sukkos. Some פסולים may be used even with a ברכה, when no other ones are available. בשעת הדחק. 

 See the Alter Rebbe’s concise list here. 649, 19. 

 3- We mentioned the issue of adding more הדסים and ערבות. 

Order your own Lulav & Etrog — Chabad of Shelton & Monroe

Topics discussed: The Rambam, additional הדסים yes, but no more that 2 ערבות, his letter explaining his שיטה, the various opinions if he changed his mind. 

The כסף משנה that the Rambam had a גמרא that seems to say that adding הדסים is fine as opposed to ערבות. Where is this גמרא? The Minhag Chabad.

From Sefer Haminhagim:

One does not take more than one esrog, one lulav, and two willow twigs – but more than three myrtle twigs may be taken.[543]

I have heard of various individuals being instructed to take four, twelve, thirteen or twenty-six myrtle twigs, but not nine,[544] sixty-eight or sixty-nine.[545]

 4-  Discussed the topic of בל תוסיף. The famous תוספות in Rosh Hashana 28, b, that performing   a מצווה twice cannot be considered בל תוסיף. Only when adding a new type, like adding a rose to the Lulav, is considered בל תוסיף. 

5- Mentioned from a previous Shiur the fascinating story of the dream the Recanati (Rikanti) had concerning the holding of the Lulav and Esrog side by side. 

Sefer Recanati by the Kabbalist - Bidspirit auction

 6- We began with the Mishna of  the הלכות אתרוג. 

One item is the חסר, – a piece missing from the Esrog which will be discussed by the גמרא further on. 

On this topic we read the text of the תרומת הדשן of a question posed to him that shows the pretty sad status of Jews at his time. 

Candied Esrog Recipe - The Sukkah Project®

Preparing Esrog for delivery to customers

The story is about a cluster of towns that were able to acquire only one Kosher esrog. Being that only one town would be able to use the entire Esrog on יום טוב, they literally cut the Esrog into small pieces and sent every town a slice!!!! 

 They asked Reb Yisrael Iserlin if what they did was correct. His response (2, 52) was a definite no. One of his reasons was: We do indeed find opinions of some, that in certain cases where the only Daled minim that one can get his hands on are of questionable כשרות or even outright פסול, one may use them. 

Fresh lemon on palm tree leaf on white background. Premium Photo


See Alter Rebbe 649 22-24

However, these cases are when there can be no mistake that in future years people will err in thinking that one can use these פסולים to begin with. לכתחילה. 

How to Dry Etrog Slices - Jewish Moms & Crafters

Slicing an Esrog לכתחילה, he writes, is something that others may think that since they have a piece of an Esrog, that is sufficient.

[We weren’t  exactly clear how that would happen]. 

Delightful Candied Etrog Slices | Recipe

7- The Mishna states that according to Rebi Yehuda an Esrog needs to be the size of an egg or larger.

11,699 Giant Egg Stock Photos, Pictures & Royalty-Free Images - iStock
We mentioned the Chasam Sofer (OC 181), that was asked about small Esrogim that were the size of an egg. There is  the opinion that the eggs we see today are smaller than the eggs of the time of the ש״ס.

Would that mean that egg sized Esrogim today are too small?

Miniature Dollhouse Lemon Tree In The Pot | Dollhouse miniatures, Doll house,  Miniatures

We mentioned that this תשובה is where the חתם סופר often quoted saying is mentioned- חדש אסור מן התורה.








Shiur Sukkah 34a-b 02/15/2022


Sukkah 34a-b

1st. Adar 14 , 5782. February 15, 2022

1- Our גמרא discusses items that had their names changed over time. It adds the ramification of these changes. 

חילפא גילא with serrated, saw-like, leaves “זעגעלאך”

Rav Chisda said: These three objects had their names changed since the Beis Hamikdosh was destroyed.

One example: That which was once called ערבה (kosher for ערבות) was called in later generations  צפצפה (not kosher),  and that which was called צפצפה was called ערבה. 

Getting a Name Change Before Divorce: How to Become "Yourself" Again

The Gemore asks: What is the practical halakhic difference that emerges from the name change? The גמרא answers: It is with regard to the mitzva of taking the lulav, as one of the species bound with the lulav is a ערבה branch, which is now called tzaftzafa.

The other 2 are:

 שִׁיפּוּרָא — חֲצוֹצַרְתָּא, חֲצוֹצַרְתָּא — שִׁיפּוּרָא. A straight Shofar as opposed to a Shofar that is ‘crooked’. 

Antlers vs. Horns | Words On Wildlife

A small table versus a larger table. פָּתוּרְתָּא — פָּתוּרָא, פָּתוּרָא — פָּתוּרְתָּא

Furniture for dolls - Country style table for miniature dollhouse – купить на Ярмарке Мастеров – A1SU1COM | Doll furniture, Moscow

We mentioned the reason for these name changes. These words would bring agony to people that lived thru the destruction on the Beis Hamikdosh. Uttering the words ערבה שופר and שולחן, would arouse memories and result in sadness. Thus the name changes. 

Dan Rivoli on Twitter: "The Malbone St. Wreck will no longer be lost in history. 101 years after New York's deadliest train crash, it has a street and subway station plaque in

Name Change due to painful memories

2- Abaya adds another example concerning the names of some of the stomachs a cow or bull have. 

מחט שנמצאת בבית הכוסות


The House of Mugs – Collettsville, North Carolina - Atlas Obscura

House of Cups

פניני הלכה הלכות חלב גיד הנשה וניקור | Other - Quizizz


Rav Yosef adds yet another example. בבל and בורסיף. It seem that Bursif, as opposed to  בבל,  was a country that was not held in great esteem by the  חכמים. 

In time, the names of these two independent countries switched. 

The גמרא offers the practical reason for the importance of knowing that this changed occurred. 

.לענין גיטי נשים. 

As Rashi explains in Shabbos 36b,  when writing a גט one needs to mention the name of the city. It is therefore important to know what country is now called בבל and what is called בורסיף.

City with the longest name. The longest names of cities in the world

Try writing a גט here.

3 – We mentioned the fascinating תשובה from the חתם סופר that goes thru the entire idea of how to identify and spell the name of the city where the גט is written. 

He questions our גמרא concerning בבל and בורסיף.

What need is there to state such matters to begin with? Anyone that writes גט needs to inquire what is the current name of the city. So if בבל is now called בורסיף, let it be so. Write , of course, בורסיף as logic would require! What is the חידוש of our גמרא? 

We scratched the surface of the תשובה where the חתם סופר sets parameters on how to spell the name of cities – especially when Jews use a different name than the non-Jewish population. 

Example:  Jews call a particular Romanian city שאץ. (The Rebbe of Shatz, or Shatzer Matzohs). Whereas the official name of the City is Suceava. 

Where is Suceava Located? What Country is Suceava in? Suceava Map

Another example we mentioned a few weeks  ago was צעהלים, . 

Jewish Community of Deutschkreutz

Prague or  Praha. 

Golem & Rabbi Loew of Praha. A golem is an animated human-like being, created entirely from inanimate m… | Retro illustration, Comic illustration, Character design

He further addresses the issue of a city changing names. This can occur in different ways.

A – Officially changed by the government. 

Constantinople, Turkey , which Jews called קושטא, to Istanbul. (Contemporary examples would be Leningrad to Petersburg and (until further notice) back to Petersburg. Yekaterinoslav to Dnipropetrovsk). 

B- Unofficial name changes that occur by the people beginning to use a slightly different name or spelling. 

C- The slow and evolving pronunciation changes of the cities. 

The חתם סופר offers clarity on these issues. 

4- We mentioned the issue of Chicago. Is it טשיקגו or שיקגו

טשיקגו – Chicago, Maxwell St, 1903

5- Also spoke about writing a גט in Melbourne Australia where the local river is the Yarra River. 


The aborigines  call this river Yarra Yarra. The newcomers shortened it to a single Yarra. What do we write in a גט? 

איין יארא אדער צוויי יאראס?

6- We mentioned from a previous shiur the letter from the Ragatchover concerning a פנקס  found with instructions from the Alter Rebbe to write ימא זוטא when a city is adjacent to a lake. 

Shiur Makkos 4a, 06/24/2014

(See there comment at bottom from Alex Heppenheimer). 

7- The next Mishna specifies the amount of each of the ד’ מינים one needs to take. 

We mentioned that despite the many מנהגים to add הדסים of various amounts, we must remember that the שלחן ערוך says that the מדקדקים use only 3 הדסים. So let’s look in our Siddur and not at our neighbor’s skimpy looking  lulav…..


6- We discussed the wording in the Mishnah where is seems that הדסים that have been cut off at the top are Kosher! This is in direct contradiction to the previous Mishnah where it states explicitly 

נקטם ראשו פסול. 

How to Grow Willow From Cuttings - Dengarden

We began to discuss the huge argument amongst the ראשונים on how to reconcile this seeming contradiction.

We read the famous text of the ראב”ד where, to bolster his opinion, he invokes the  רוח הקודש 

that ‘appeared in our בית מדרש‘.

Rambam Lulav 8,5.

הדס שנקטם וכו’. כתב הראב”ד ז”ל כבר הופיע רוח הקודש בבית מדרשנו מכמה שנים והעלינו שהוא פסול כסתם מתני’. ודברי רבי טרפון שאמר אפילו שלשתן קטומים כשר ענין אחר הוא ולא שנקטם ראשו והכל ברור בחבורנו ומקום הניחו לי מן השמים עכ”ל:

We will IY”H continue next week.  







Shiur Sukkah 34a 02/08/22


Suka 34a

1st. Adar 7 , 5782. February 8, 2022

1- We again learned the Mishna concerning ערבות. The גמרא cites opinions whether or not they actually need to grow on a river bank. Tosafos says that since according to Abba Shaul, our ערבות must be from a plant that is adjacent to a river as the literal translation of ערבי נחל. 

Plant Image Gallery

We mentioned the Rosh (and others) who says that he has never seen this in practice. The words ערבי נחל mean a species that usually grows on a river bank. 

Salix x 'Americana' Willow Variety Grown by Lakeshore Willows | Wainfleet, ON

The Alter Rebbe 647, 1 agrees and uses the term רוב מין זה גדל על נחלי מים. 

2- Going back to the question of dates of a Lulav tree and if it a prerequisite to use one only if the tree actually bears fruit – we mentioned the Rogatchover, Rambam, Lulav P7:

אך גבי לולב אם צריך דוקא שיהיה מן דקל שעושה תמרים

His point is that it must indeed produce fruit or at least be a species that is fruit bearing. (Meaning that a species of a fruit bearing palm tree that is located in a cold climate that hinders the growth of fruit would also be Kosher). 

His interesting proof is from the Gemara in Menochos 27a  that says concerning the ד’ מינים that 2 of 4 come from fruit bearing trees and two do not. He asks why is it only two?

דארבעה מינים שבלולב שנים מהם עושין פירות ושנים מהן אין עושין וקשה הא גם בהדס יש פירות

A הדס also produces berries as we discussed at length in previous shiurim.

Cotoneaster salicifolius (Willow Leaf Cotoneaster)

The Rogatchover derives from this that the Kosher הדס is when it does not have fruit! As the הלכה is that if it has berries that are black or red it is פסול since then the berries are considered fruit. (as opposed to green ones). 

Plants to Avoid — Biosphere Institute of the Bow Valley

Conversely, the גמרא, when it says that 2 of 4 produce fruit,  it meant to say that the 2, Lulav and Esrog, must produce fruit! 

3 – We continued to discuss the concept of when is it Shabbos and Yom Tov למעלה. Since there are different world time zones causing Shabbos and Yom Tom to occur at different times on earth, when is it Shabbos and Yom Tom in עולמות הרוחניים?   

Four Reasons Shabbat Is Compared to Bride and a Queen - Shabbat

We learnt the text of the Alter Rebbe that explains that it actually corresponds to the location of each individual. 

GPS coordinates, latitude and longitude with interactive Maps

Shabbos is here

This week we looked at  perhaps a somewhat different take on this.  

In short- There is an expression in the זהר “The שכינה is constantly present among בני ישראל on Shabbos and Yom Tov, even on Shabbos that is on a weekday”

What does ‘Shabbos of the weekday’ mean?  Is it שבת or חול? 

We spoke about Reb Yehuda Rosanes who lived in קושטא or  Constantinople,  Turkey, today called Istanbul. He is known for the massive book on the Rambam, the משנה למלך. Additionally he penned a Book of Droshos called פרשת דרכים. Sefer Detail: פרשת דרכים -- רוזנס, יהודה בן שמואל, 1657-1727


In one (#23) of the דרשות he  writes about this perplexing Zohar. One explanation offered is that Shabbos can also be a weekday when someone is lost in a desert, not knowing what day of the week it is.

היה מהלך במדבר ואינו יודע אימתי שבת – מונה ששה ימים ומשמר יום אחד

The Halachah is that he needs to count 6 weekdays and the seventh day is ‘his Shabbos’. In a sense, that would be a ‘Shabbos of the weekday’. 

Biblical Moses Walks Through The Sinai Desert, The Wilderness, In Search Of The Promised Land, 3d Render Painting Stock Photo, Picture And Royalty Free Image. Image 132579174.

He then offers another explanation concerning the time zones. ‘We believe that just as there are weekdays and Shabbos on earth, there is also this difference in heaven. Such as in regards to the  גיהנום on Shabbos. 

Heaven or Earth? - Church of Christ Articles

So what time zone is used למעלה? 

earth globe time zones map spin Stock Footage Video (100% Royalty-free) 29986624 | Shutterstock

The consensus amongst Kabbalists is that Shabbos is primarily established on the Shabbos hours of  Yerushalayim, the other time zones are merely an offshoot of the Shabbos hours of Yerushalayim. So in heaven, that is the ‘real Shabbos’. 

Israel Time Zone Converter Difference Calculator

So in a sense, outside ארץ ישראל, all other times around the world are a weekday in comparison to the ‘real’ Shabbos in Yerushalayim. And that is the meaning in the זהר: Shabbos and Yom Tov and that is on a weekday. Meaning a Shabbos that is outside Yerushalayim when in  Yerushalayim it is a week day! 

Does this jive with what the Alter Rebbe writes? 

You be the judge. 



Shiur Sukkah 33b 02/01/2022


Suka 33b. 

Shvat 30, 5782. February 1, 2022

1- The conclusion of  the יש דחוי אצל מצוות או לא  topic.

We used an example of the minus and plus symbols. – +. 

Plus Minus Signs Stock Photo - Download Image Now - iStock

Minus is when the מצוה object is not usable –  it is a minus. 

When it reverses, and becomes usable, it is a plus

2- There are two scenarios in objects of דיחוי.  Meaning that a certain time it was not useable, not כשר, to perform a מצוה with . The question is if it can regain the כשר status. 

We discussed which is more logical to disqualify.  a or b. 

a- Minus, plus. דיחוי מעיקרא

b- Plus, minus, plus. נראה, נדחה ונראה

Example for ‘a’: – +

If a הדס  was trimmed at the top and after  Yom Tov begins, a berry grows on the top. 

So when the Yom Tov arrived and the הדס is unusable, that’s  a minus. דיחוי מעיקרא. It starts off פסול.

When the berry grows and makes it usable, כשר, that’s a plus

So we have a minus plus


Example for ‘b’: + – +

A הדס has many green berries, so it’s כשר. Plus

In the middle of Yom Tov, they turn black. The הדס becomes  פסול. Minus

One then picks off the berries (באיסור), the הדס is back to being כשר. Plus.  

So we have a plus minus plus. נראה ונדחה ונראה

3- We touched on the topic of אינו מתכוון and מלאכה שאינה צריכה לגופה. 

The difference between intent and purpose. 

young girl drags plastic garden chair across lawn Stock Photo - Alamy

Moving a bench across a vegetable patch to bring it to a deck for a Kiddush. 

The dragging may create a long ditch that can be used to plant seeds in it the next day. 

That’s ‘plowing’. חורש. 

His intent is not to plow but to move the bench from one location to another. 

That is אינו מתכוון. Without intent. 

Bed In A Grain Field- Concept Of Good Sleep Stock Photo, Picture And Royalty Free Image. Image 20129611.

…Just trying to move the bed

On the other hand, if someone needs gravel for a project and digs into the vegetable patch, his intent is indeed to dig. (as opposed to dragging the bench where his intent is not to dig). 

What is lacking is the purpose. The digging is for the earth, not for the hole (to plow).  

Headless Chicken – Stronger Generations Initiative

4- We discussed the concept of פסיק רישא. 

5- We began the new Mishna concerning ערבות. We will discuss next week if they actually need to grow on a river bank or not. 

Israel's adopted eucalyptus trees are the bee's knees | The Times of Israel

Eucalyptus in Israel

See here about using a branch from a eucalyptus tree

6- Concerning a Lulav, although the תורה says כפות תמרים, which means branches from a date tree, do they need to produce dates? 

date palm | Description, Uses, & Cultivation | Britannica

What if it is a date producing tree but due its location in cold climates it does not? 

Can Palm Trees Survive Snow? [The answer may surprise you!] - Garden Tabs

The consensus based of the Chasam Sofer is that the tree does need to be of a type that can produce dates, but it is fine if it does not actually produce dates.

See here

Disclaimer: The authors in this link do not necessarily express opinions that are accepted by all. 

7- A final note about the translation of the word ירוק. We mentioned the Rashi from this week’s פרשה.

Tekhelet: The Mystery of the Long-Lost Biblical Blue Thread - Mitzvahs &  Traditions

ותכלת” – צמר צבוע בדם חלזון וצבעו ירוק

“Wool that is dyed with the blood of the Chilazon and the color is Yarok”.

Green Tzitzit Set of 4 (Handmade Tzitzits),#Tzitzit, #Green, #Set, #Tzitzits | Active wear for women, Handmade, Green

We know that the חלזון is the fish from which the תכלת for ציצית is produced. And that is ….blue.

Yet, רש”י  used the word ירוק.