Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Happy Sukkos


Unfortunately there are very real problems of sexual abuse in out communities. Thankfully, we have someone who works on behalf of the victims and tries to stop abuse before it starts. Instead of putting pictures of those "gedolim" who protect and enable pedophiles in your sukkah, put up this picture of Harav Chayim Soloveichik. He is an outspoken voice in defense of our children, and putting this picture up in your sukkah will hopefully raise awareness of this important issue and show pedophiles that they are not welcome.
If you bring your children to open, public events during the Chag, such as a Simchas Beis Hasho'eivah, please keep an eye out on your kids. An open, community-wide event is an opportunity for innaproproate activity by these people.
Chag Samei'ach.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Nida Biyehuda - Part 5

That which you asked me to arrange an order of teshuva for this baal teshuva and you mentioned he is weak and can’t fast so mauch, you also mentioned the amazing hasmada with which he learns day and night and does not say unnecessary things and does not sleep in a bed at night. Now, you asked a difficult thing, for I usually do not answer questions for which no answer is found in the gemara and poskim, for we have not found in all the Talmud the unmber of fasts for each sin according to its severity. True, the verse states "return with fasts." But the number of fasts is not in Tanach of the gemara, but Mussar and Teshuva books go into great lengths in these matters but most of their words are based on thoughts from the stomach (in Yiddish we call this a boiche sevara, a thought from the stomach, meaning you’re using your stomach to think instead of using your head -Ed.) without any basis. And each book quotes from the next oe but they have no foundation. We find in these books many stringencies and many leniencies and it is difficult for me to answer, especially after I see that this man is a young Torah scholar he should arrange his own Teshuva, especially because these Mussar books are very accessible. But because you want to know and he is weak and is a young Tora hscholar I will not hold myself back from commenting. Now his sin is very grave - adultery with a married woman is very serious. And he did it very often over three years and he was with her I nthe house and he was obviousle wit hher many, many times and would he have the years of Mesushelach (the oldest man ever - 969 years) he would not be able to fast enough to counter the sin according to the Teshuva system of the Rokeiach, which is based on Kabbala, and we cannot compare his words to the later works (apparently he means compared to those Mussar books which he just said have no basis). And the Knei Chochma said for those who return [in repentance] it is sufficient to do teshuva of the same weight for that sin three times has no basis. And if someone who did an aveira for which you would receive malkos 20 times and he was warned each time, would three sets of malkus suffice? Beis din will punish him according to the number of warnings. And an explicit mishna says if they told [a nazir] don’t drink [the wine] several times, he receives multiple sets of malkos. And that which he said with the third time the sin is stained on his neshamaand there is nowhere for the fourth time [of the sin] to [affect his neshama], this has no merit. Is his son the only thing affected? It makes problem in higher [worlds (see Nefesh Hachaim, Shaar 1 - Ed.)] and Chazal said on the verse "Vatishkach kel mecholelecha (Haazinu)....I don’t look at these types of books, but I remember a little from my youth.
All this would be important if fasting was the main part (me’akeiv) of teshuva. But it is not; fasting is subordinate to Tehsiva, and the main teshuva is leaving the sin and verbal confession (vidui) with a broken heart and deep heartfelt remorse and a desire to love the Creator (Hashem) and that is returning to Hashem . Everything else is subordinate to this. Know, there is no doubt that Teshuva affects full atonement and this is explicit in Tanach and in both Talmuds and in all the midrashim. The prophet Yechezkel said "when a rasha returns from his wickedness..." "All the sins that he sinned will not be remembered. And there is no doubt that in the time of the Sanhedrin if he violated a capital sin if the witnesses did not come for many years and in the meantime he did teshuva and fasted so much, beyond what th eRokeiach says, and after the Teshiva the witnesses testified against him in Beis Din certainly the Beis din will not take his teshuva into accountand they will give him the punishment of sekila or sereifa etc. according to his sin. This matter is hard to understand, for Teshuva helps and he already turned away from his sin and he received atonement, why is he killed? We don’t kill innocent men! Yet the mishna says if someone guilty of a capital crime did teshuva the beis din cannot firgive him [and they must give hi mthe punishment he deserves]! So it is the gzeiras hakasuv [that we kill him] for if we allow teshuva to push off the punishment, we will no longer have a system of capital punishments. Whenever someone will be guilty he won;t be killed because he will do teshuva. Since Hashem wanted go give punishments of death for a small number of sins so people will be afraid of transgressing them, teshiva will not help for a capital crime. If you think a certain teshuva regimen is the main part of teshuva it should have been told to Moshe at Sinai, and then why shouldn’t teshuva help to save one from capital punishment? Even though there will be some who don’t do teshuva, and there are some thinkgs to do like sit without clothes in front of bees [to get stung which should be for teshuva] or to roll in snow [and the pain should be for teshuva] and other similar things mentioned in these teshuva books, and whoever does not do this will get killed by beis din, even fasting won’t work if the witnesses come to beis din before he was able to fast all the days he needed to fast. ..But fasting is not the main thing; real teshuva is sincere remorse. This can be achieved in one moment...

Even though there are four levels of forgiveness - Chazal said if you transgressed Kareis or misas beis din, Teshuva an Yom Kippur [hold your punishment in abeyance] and yissurim (sufferings) will cause you to achieve forgiveness - seems to show that yissurim are the main part of the forgiveness? I answer that it’s true that you need yissurim, Chazal said even trying to take three things out of your pocket and you only got two is yissurim, see end of perek yesh b’Eirachin. And it’s true that the Rokeiach is kabbala and he gives a specific teshuva for a sin, that’s external to help the baal tehsuva break his stubborn heart to be able to have remorse in his heart. As long as his heart is not broken he cannot have remorse. Someone who is able to break his heart though Torah study , I would be very lenient in the number of fasts. But remorse and a broken heart and cerying is very important and one who cries privately is praiseworthy. For the main Teshiva I see this man has already made great strides - he hasn’t sinned with this woman since he got married two years ago even though they still live in the same house. Gemara end of Yoma says who is a baal teshuva? When the same [opportunity to] sin came once and twice and he was aved from it. Rav Yehuda said it must be the same woman during the same time period, and that was fulfilled with this man. Still, while it was the same woman, it’s not really a similar situation because now this man is married, but when he sinned he was a bachelor, and I do not know if he stopped sinning with her from teshuva or because his wife would have found out about it.

Noda Biyehuda - Part 4

Two, we must understand the lenient opinion in the Yerushalmi, and to say it agrues on the Bavli is unsatisfactory. The Yerushalmi’s phrase “k”h is great that it pushes off the mitzvah if it’s a lo taseh, for a certain amount of time [lit. one hour]” is strange. Why the double useage of mitzvah and lo taseh, just say lo taseh! Rather the intent of the Yerushalmi is that k”h pushes off a mitzvah. When? The condition is for a lo taseh in a passive situation, but not actively. Now the Yerushalmi is exactly like the Bavli in that it only allows temporary suspension of the prohibition of shatnes because of k”h. Now the question is if you find your own garment has shatnez, how can the Y consider that passive, and Bavli calls it active? So I feel the amoraim in Y argue on the same point as the amoraim in the Bavli, Makos 21b: [how are you chayav many times for wearing shatnez?] Rav Beibo said when you take it off and put it on again. Rav Ashi says if you keep wearing it for the amount of time you could have removed it [you’re chayav]. To Rav Ashi, wearing it and not taking it off is considered an act of wearing shatnez, for if not, how could be chayav malkos, for the rule is there is no malkos for a passive violation? So he holds keeping it on is an action. And Rav Beibo holds you need to take off and put on multiple times to do an act to receive malkos. So the two opinions in the Y. accord with the two opinions in the Bavli…Now we understand that [Rav Beibo] who considers this passive – but only temporarily, not to keep wearing that garment indefinitely. If so, it follows that if you see someone wearing shatnez, since it’s a mitzvah to stop him from doing an aveira, but that is suspended because of k”h, only temporarily.

If so it is clear he must tell the husband that his wife was unfaithful so that he separates from her. The question is, as you asked, must he tell the husband in a situation where the husband may not believe him since he does not have two witnesses? I feel this is no argument [and he still must tell the husband] since he must do what he can to stop the man from sinning [by remaining with his unfaithful wife] even when it’s not certain, he must take care of his responsibility [and tell the husband] for it is no worse than the regular mitzvah of hochei’ach tochiach es amisecha, reproaching your fellow about which the Gemara Shabbos 55a says just because you know [it’s wrong], does he know?

This is instructive in the situation where a “stranger” knows that a certain woman committed adultery. But in this situation this man was the adulterer and he influenced her sin, and he wants to do teshuva he must remove the stumbling block in all ways possible and ensure his fellow won’t sin because of him either (about this see Chagiga 9b that an adulterer's sin continues because he cannot rectify it). Nothing stands in the way of Teshuva but Chazal’s intent was for strict teshuva. Still he must do all he can and if the husband does not believe him, he should hope to attain teshuva and the Master of Mercy (G-d) should accept his teshuva with mercy.

And that which you asked – if he informs the husband and he does not accept it, must he tell a beis din and inform them? It is simple that he only tells the husband. If the husband believes him he will separate from his wife and all is well, and if does not believe it, what good will going to the beis din help? The husband doesn’t have to believe him, and what will beis din do here? Not only is he not required to go to beis din, he may not even be allowed to go to beis din, and if he does he might deserve malkos midirabanan like the incident it Pesachim 113b where Tovia sinned, Zigud testified against him [alone; there was no other witness] and Rav Papa gave lashes to Zigud for allegations against Tovia which could not be proven because there were not two witnesses to Tovia’s act. Even though Rama in S”A C”M 28:1 says only for an incident which already happened would it be considered tale-bearing, but if it is to stop someone from sinning you may testify [which would imply in this case he may go to beis din]. Even if there is a doubt that the beis din will believe him, as the basis of this (the Rama’s) ruling is from Semag Lo Taseh 213: one man may not testify agains a man…we learn from here one man who knows something about his fellow where he cannot impose an oath (in monetary matters one witness may compel an oath) may not testify, and if he does he receives lashes for giving the other person a bad name. And that which we find in Kiddushin (Daf 66a) where one witness told a man his wife had been unfaithful, Mar Shmuel told the man if he believes the account like it was delivered by two witnesses he should divorce her, and Mar Shmuel did not castigate the single witness, and also a similar incident in Perek Hanizakin…[why was one witness believed and not punished]? To stop someone from committing a sin [of remaining with his unfaithful wife] it is different [and one witness may testif]. There, it was not certain that the husband would believe the witness, still Mar Shmuel did not punish him – the man told Mar Shmuel, the Beis Din, and not the husband! (NB shows from the text of the story the man must have told the Dayan, not the husband) Also, Mar Shmuel did not say the man should have told the husband? We can say in that situation the husband was not around, so he told Mar Shmuel, expecting the husband to believe him. But if the witness told the husband about the offense and sees he is not believed, there will be no benefit in telling the beis din, and he will only get lashes for giving someone a bad name.

And that which you were unsure about if he will confess [to the affair] in front of beis din it will give credence (raglayim ledavar) and the beis din will force the man to divorce his wife even though he’s not believed as two witnesses, as the Chavos Yair says in Teshuva 72? Even if the Chavos Yair would pasken this way, which is a matter of discussion, he is discussing a case where the wife admits that she was unfaithful and we say she only said it because she wanted to marry someone else (and by “admitting” to this her husband would have to divorce her) , in that case raglayim ledavar help…. And Yevamos 24b since the matter is disgusting (dirty) she must be divorced, most Rishinim explain that that case is where (the husband returned home to find a traveling salesman leaving and his wife was getting dressed [see the gemara there for exact situations] so he divorced her, if she then went and married that salesman) she must get divorced from the salesman (and the case is where the husband divorced her because of this incident even though he may not have been required to divorce her), and even to the She’iltos that she must get divorced from her husband if there were two witnesses [to the disgusting case, but not witnesses to the znus itself) but here there is only one man confessing and why would we believe his and his confession about the woman?

Therefore the advice is that the adulterer should only tell the woman’s husband privately. The way he should tell according to the Law is just to say your wife committed adultery (and not with whom) for it does not matter to the husband with whom she had adultery because regardless of who it was she is forbidden to him, and why should the adulterer announce his sin for no reason? The Gemara in Yoma 86b says regarding an unknown sin “praised is the one who covers a sin.” And it is also chutzpah to declare his sin. But, logically it seems the husband may believe him more when he sees the man is confessing with remorse and they feel very true, so it’s better to confess privately and if he is humiliated by it good, because if someone was humiliated after his sin he is forgiven. I think he also must ask forgiveness from the husband because this sin has two parts – between man and heaven, for transgressing a serious sin, for which teshuva and Yom Kippur will bring atonement, and the second part is the sin between man to his fellow in that he causes his wife to be forbidden to him. For sins between man and his fellow, teshiva and Yom Kippur doen’t help, and you also must appease the hurt party, for even if one steals and returns the pbject he must appease the victim, certainly here where he cannot rectify the situation (because she will remain forbidden to him forever). (It seem NB is saying while he doesn’t have to admit that he was the guy, the husband will probably figure it out, so the man should ask for forgiveness.)

And with this, by telling the husband and not beis din, he is keeping the honor of the family intact. No harm will come, because the husband is already elderly and he won’t go and marry a new wife [if he would divorce his current wife for being unfaithful] and he is not required to divorce her (because there is not real evidence like two witnesses) and she may stay in his house and we don’t suspect that he will have relations with her, since she was unfaithful, she is repulsive to him. As we see in S”A E”H 117:1 in Rama. Beis Shmuel 8 writes without witnesses he may keep her in his house. You can’t say that is only where she certainly was adulterous wit h2 witnesses, but not here where there is one witness, and she should be like sotah … This case is not like sotah because there we need two witnesses to ensure they are not together (on the way to Beis din after she was found being alone with the other man after her husband warned her; these 2 witnesses make sure the husband & wife aren’t together in yichud because if they are the sotah process won’t work) there, by Sotah, she was forbidden to him according to the din, een though her adultery was not certain, so they need 2 witnesses to ensure they don’t have yichud, but our case we don’t need witnesses to ensure they don’t have yichud because either if the husband believes the man like 2 witnesses she will be disgusting to him and we don’t suspect he will have relations with her. And if he doesn’t believe the man, she is not forbidden to him. So he may keep her in his house and to the Beis Shmuel you don’t even need witnesses [to ensure they don’t have yichud]. But it is simple that they may not have yichud in one room because then it is eish bine’uras (fire of youth). And this way there will be no blight to the family’s honor.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Noda Biyehuda - Part 3

This is Ri’s opinion, but Rabbeinu Tam says (33a end of s.v. v’afkinu) in such a situation [where the get is being annulled in order to retroactively annul the marriage] we do not say that the kiddushin are uprooted/annulled. If so this case is not like nazir who can ask [a chacham] to annul his vow of nezirus. And to Ri the matter depends on the machlokes Rashi- Tosfos in Brachos.

It seems that the Rama paskens like Tosfos, because a kohen in a house that has corpse in it and he stays and does not leave is considered doing an action (and not passive) because he actively waits in the house, similar to the gemara considering one who does not remove shatnez doing an action, even though he is already wearing it, not removing it is considered an action. See Tosfos Makkos 21b s.v. afilu tha the kohen staying in the house with a corpse is no different than one keeping shatnez on his body and might be worse than keeping shatnez on, and both are considered actions, so how does Rama Y”D 372:1 pasken that an unclothed kohen who is sleeping under the same roof as a corpse, we don’t tell him about the corpse (i.e.. that he must leave) until he gets dressed, but remaining is called an action! And to Rashi even a kohen may not become tamei in a kum v’aseh bcause of k”h! So Rama certainly paskens like Tosfos that Kohen and nazir are allowed to become tamei [for meis mitzvah]; Nazir because his vow can be annulled, and Kohen because it’s not prohibited for everyone. However, Rama really paskens like Rashi because if he held like Tosfos, how can can Rama pasken if they told him [of the corpse] he may not remain there, even if he is unclothed. But Tosfos allows him to become tamei intentionally because of k”h and there is no situation more degrading than running outside unclothed! So Rama must pasken like Rashi, and that which we originally said he’s like Tosfos, we must say he follows his opinion in Siman 303 like Rosh that by shatnez if the wearer is unaware we don’t tell him (or, here the kohen is sleeping, so it’s even more unintention than shogeg – Ed.).

I also feel even to Ri that we can uproot the marriage, we would not be lenient here (our case of the adulteress) like we are in other matters because it is more strict than other prohibitions, and it’s like a chiyuv kareis. Because regular lav does not push off yibum and midioraissa has yibum, only there is a rabbinic gzeira that the first biah is forbidden lest they do a second biah (which is not for a mitzvah) and therefore they do chalitza as we find in Yevamos 20a-b, but an adulteress who is forbidden to her husband exempts her co-wife (tzarah) from chalitza and yibum, and she is like a full ervah (forbidden relationship). Yet regular lavim, they are forbidden to their husband but permitted to their yavam (husband’s brother), so we see this sin is stricter, and if those cases aren’t pushed aside for k”h, neither is this case. Especially that to Rambam he must inform the husband [of the infidelity] just like you see someone wearing shatnez in the marketplace, even though the wearer is unintentional (shogeg), you must remove it from him!

Yet I still have a reason to say to Rambam we should not tell because of k”h. By someone wearing shatnez, many people can see him wearing shatnez and not know he is shogeg, so it’s a big chilul hashem. But here there is no chilul hashem (because nobody knows of the affair) even to do an action we say k”h pushes off an aveira….But I reject this thesis, because Rav Yehuda will consider the aveira chilul hashem, whether many people see (or are aware of) the aveira or not….Even Rosh will agree because in discussing the person wearing shatnez he says the opinion in Yerushalmi that does not require us to remove Shatnez says “k”h pushes off a mitzvah for one hour.” That only allows him to keep the shatnez on until he returns home from the market. But in our case the man will remain married to his wife for a long time, even Rosh will agree the man must inform the husband of her actions…And you might push off this diyuk I made, because perhaps the Rosh is only talking about a case where the person was wearing shatnez is meizid for that hour (when he realizes it’s shatnez until he returns home) but when it is shogeg we allow k”h even for a long time (and here the husband is shogeg). I have two responses to that line of reasoning: One, chazal only let k”h push something off for a short time, not indefinitely....

(to be continued)

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Noda Biyehuda Part 2

This point is a machlokes between Rosh and Rambam, based on Brachos 19b: Said R. Yehuda in the name of Rav: one who find shatnez in his garment removes it [the garment] even in the marketplace [where there are many people who will see him without his shirt]. They ask from several sugyos that k”h pushes off prohibitions, so it should push off wearing shatnez also? They answer “shev v’al taaseh” [doing nothing to violate the prohibition] is different. We see wearing shatnez is considered an act. (Even though he is not putting on shatnez now, it’s already on him, not removing it is considered an act.)

It’s a machlokes what exactly is the case of this gemara. Rambam’s girsa is “one who finds shatnez in the marketplace” and does not have “finds in his garment.” He understands this is where you see someone else wearing shatnez, you are required to remove it off of him. We see this is shev v’al taaseh in regard to the finder, but because the wearer is an act, the finder must remove it from the wearer. The girsa of the Rosh is where you find shatnez in your own garment. Therefore he paskens in Hilchos Kilayim that if you see someone else wearing shatnez and he is shogeg, the wearer is not considered to be doing a prohibited act, and the finder is just passive (shev v’al taaseh).

Rambam learns his din even when the wearer is beshogeg, as Tur YD 303 brings the Rosh as arguing on Rambam, and in Shulchan Aruch they are brought as two opinions , and the mechaber paskens like Rambam and the Rama paskens like Rosh.

Our case is exactly like that case – the husband will violate by doing an act – being with his wife who is forbidden to him, but he is shogeg, not knowing that she was unfaithful to him. And the one who knows that he is doing an aveira (the current son-in-law) is passive in not telling him. To the Rosh he may remain silent due to kavod mishpacha [being k”h]. To Rambam the son-in-law must inform the husband to stop him from violating a prohibition.

You can say even Rosh will agree here the son-in-law must tell because the husband must divorce his wife to save the wife from a prohibition because she knows she was unfaithful yet she remains married to her husband. But you can push this off because the woman doesn’t know that she’s forbidden to her husband and omer mutar is not worse than shogeg. I can even suggest to the Rambam it’s not certain that he must inform the husband because it depends on machlokes Rashi Tosfos in Brachos there. Rashi s.v. shev v’al taseh says tumah was allowed for nazir and kohen when he comes across a mes mitzvah which he is uprooting [his prohibition against becoming tamei] with an action because of k”h, there is not k”h because he was never prohibited against becoming tamei for a mes mitzvah, just like there is no prohibition for him to become tamei when a close relative dies. Tosfos s.v. Shev argues on Rashi and says it does push off the lav, but Nazir is an exception because he can have his vow of nezirus annulled, and a kohen is an exception because becoming tamei is not a law that applies to everyone (shava lakol; it’s a din that only applies to kohanim). So to Rashi a lav hashava lakol and even if it can be annulled, even as an action is not pushed aside because of k”h, and to Tosfos something that can be annulled or it’s not shava lakol is pushed off because of k”h even by doing an act.

I say that this woman who was unfaithful and became forbidden to her husband is comparable to nazir which can be annulled, because the idea of being annulled means the prohibition can be removed meikara (a priori / retroactively). The husband can do this also based on what Tosfos says in Gittin 33a s.v. v’afkinhu: can a man who is married to his niece (I assume this case was used because it is a case where he will not want his unfaithful wife to be killed-Ed.), and she has committed adultery, send her a get and annul the get after he already sent it to her? The chachamim in this case retroactively annulled their marriage. So can he do this to annul the marriage and make them not married at the time of her infidelity (and hence save her from the death penalty)? Ri says yes, and it will be like nazir. Thus Ri's opinion here is we push off the lav [of remaining with his unfaithful wife] even with a action because of k”h. (Then Noda Biyehuda has a brief discussion that this Tosfos is according to a tana that we don’t pasken like, but he concludes it is like nazir.) (About this sugya – see Rakeffet-Rothkoff, Rabbi Aaron, “Annulment of Marriage Within the Context of Cancellation of the Get “, Tradition, 15:1-2, link: here.)

(to be continued)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Noda Biyehuda Kama O”C 35 - Part 1

Noda Biyehuda Kama O”C 35

This is related to the blog in several ways:
1) It discusses an issue if a woman is permitted to stay with her husband after being unfaithful without 2 witnesses;
2) Several issues crop up that are found in Gemara Makos – omer mutar (I hope to discuss that later) and a mishna on Daf 21 about repeatedly violating the same sin, you get punished multiple times; and
3) It discusses a course of Teshuva for a person to follow. Because we are in the Aseres Yemai Teshuva, this issue is inyana diyoma.

I will paraphrase the whole Teshuva (in this context means responsum, not repentance) (normally I translate directly).

Question: a man (who was single) had a relationship with an eishes ish for 3 years. They stopped their affair, and this man married her daughter(!). The man wants to do teshuva (he had already stopped the aveira of eishes ish for a while), and wants to know if he must ask forgiveness from the woman’s husband (his current father-in-law). Also, if he informs the father-in-law, that man will have to separate from his wife, because a woman who committed adultery is forbidden to stay with her husband. Also, if they were to separate it would be a scandal because the family is a well-regarded family. So is it better for him not to tell his father-in-law? Should he instead speak to the beis din? And he wants to do teshuva, so what should he do; he is a weak man who studies a lot of Torah?

The Response:
Must he tell the man whose wife was unfaithful to him to separate him from a prohibition [of staying with his unfaithful wife] where the family name will be tarnished – can we be lenient because of kavod habrios [and not tell] because kavod habrios pushes off a lo taseh? Now, kavod habrios (k”h) only pushes off as lav as shev v’al taaseh (by doing nothing) but an action for the sake of k”h won’t push it off. As far as the baal teshuva is concerned it is shev v’al taaseh, what about for the husband – he will stay with his unfaithful wife by doing a maaseh [of tashmish] but since he doesn’t know about it (the affair) it’s only shogeg? (It seems the questioner wanted to allow this, and now the Noda Biyehuda will discuss it.)

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Selichos: Preparing us for Yom Kippur

video
In memory of my uncle, בן ציון מאיר בן שמואל ז"ל, whose 55th yahrzeit is on 26 Elul

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

17b - Olah, connection to Viduy

17b Ritva s.v. aderabah. The Gemara implies olah isn't mechaper. But olah is mechaper for asin and lav hanitak l'asei! See Rashi Vayikra 1:4, Rambant here, Baalei Hatosfos there, Yoma 36a and Gilyonei Hashas (by R'Yosef Engel) there, Rabi Akiva's opinion in Toras Kohanim 1 Dibura D'Nadav parshasa 3:8, Tosefta Menachos 10:12, Rambam Maasei Hakorbanos 3:14 (thanks to Torah Shleima 105). The Ritva answers even though olah provides kapara for asei and lav hanitak l'asei, the olah's purpose is not to provide kapara for these things; the pasuk only promises that you will get kaparah for the listed things.

My question is, on Yom Kippur we say in the viduy "v'al chataim she'anu chayavim aleihem olah." But according to the Ritva, we're never chayav to bring an olah? (I don't have an answer.)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

14b - Wasn't Rabi Yochanan the Rebbe of Reish Lakish?

14b : Gzeirah Shava lo gamar. Rashi says Reish Lakish didn't hear it from his Rebbi, Rabi Yochanan, so he could not learn the gzeira shava.. But Rabi Yochanan was the Rebbi of Reish Lakish! See Bava Metzia 84a.

The book Mareh Hamakom on Makos answers on p. 171 that Tosfos in B"M there, and Yevamos 57a s.v. asa says that Reish Lakish originally learned Torah from Rav Oshia, then he became a bandit, then Rabi Yochanan convinced hm to leave banditry and return to Torah. So Rabi
Yochanan wasn't Reish Lakish's only Rebbi. (To Rashi, who holds holds Reish Lakish was a bandit from his youth and didn't learn Torah until he encountered Rabi Yochanan, I don't know how to answer this question.)

Monday, September 7, 2009

Makos 8b Ritva Amai

8b kusi & eved go to galus and get malkos...Ritva s.v. Amai Kari bei asks that eved and kusi are not oseh maasei amcha...and eved also, even though he is amcha in that he's chayav in mitzvos like a woman, he's not allowed to enter the kahal [marry a ksheira]. The Aruch Laner has some problems with this Ritva, namely, according to this logic you could curse a mamzer or ger mitzri within 3 generations, but such a thing is not permitted! (I have some problems with his answer.)

I think there is a simple explanation. There are two types of people who may not enter the kahal: people who have a psul, like a mamzer, and people, like eved, who lack complete kedushas yisrael. Rav Chaim Brisker in Issurei Biah 13:12 discusses that an eved after his first tvila has to do mitzvos like a woman, but he does not have complete kedushas yisrael until after the second tevila, which happens after he is freed.

The Ritva does not mean anyone who is asur lavo bekahal may be cursed. He means even though eved is achicha in certain mitzvos, because he can't enter the kahal we see he's not fully b'amcha. But a mamzer who has full kedushas yisrael is certainly amcha.