POINT BY POINT SUMMARY
Prepared by Rabbi P. Feldman
of Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Yerushalayim
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld
Ask A Question on the daf
Previous daf Avodah Zarah 46
AVODAH ZARAH 46 (26 Nisan) - has been dedicated by Mr. Avi Berger in memory
of his mother, Leah bas Michel Mordechai, in honor of her Yahrzeit.
1) NICKNAMES FOR IDOLATRY
(a) Suggestion: Perhaps we must create glorious nice
nicknames for idolatry.
2) NATURAL OBJECTS THAT WERE WORSHIPPED
(b) Objection: This cannot be!
(c) Suggestion: Rather, perhaps we may create nicknames that
are neither glorious nor derogatory.
(d) Rejection: "Shaketz Teshaketzenu v'Sa'ev Tesa'avenu".
1. If they call it 'Beis Galya (the high place)', we
call it 'Beis Karya (the pit)'; if they call it 'Ein
Kol (the eye of all)', we call it 'Ein Kotz (the eye
of the thorn)'.
(a) (A reciter of Beraisos): If Nochrim worship mountains and
hills, they are permitted, the Nochrim are liable to die;
3) USING IN THE MIKDASH AN ITEM WORSHIPPED WHEN ATTACHED
1. If they worship vegetation, it is forbidden, the
Nochrim are liable to die.
(b) (Rav Sheshes): Your Beraisa is like R. Yosi b'Rebbi
Yehudah, who says that if a tree was planted, and later
it was Ne'evad, it is forbidden.
(c) Question: Why not say, it was initially planted to be
Ne'evad, the Beraisa is even like Chachamim!
(d) Answer: Presumably, the case is similar to mountains (the
first clause) - just as mountains were not initially made
to be Ne'evadim, also the vegetation.
(e) (Benei R. Chiya or R. Yochanan): If rocks of a mountain
came loose (and they were Ne'evadim), they are permitted;
(f) (The other of Benei R. Chiya and R. Yochanan): They are
(g) The lenient opinion considers them like a mountain: just
as man had no part in making a mountain and a mountain is
permitted, also the rocks.
1. Question: We cannot learn from a mountain, it is
(h) The stringent opinion learns from "Shaketz Teshaketzenu",
we never expound to permit idolatry (unless the verse
2. Answer: An animal is not attached, and it is also
3. Question: We cannot learn from an animal, it is
4. Answer: A mountain is not alive, and it is
5. Conclusion: Each has its own stringency; the Tzad
ha'Shavah (common side) of them is that man had no
part in making them and they are permitted, also
anything that man had no part in making it is
6. Objection: We cannot learn from a mountain and an
animal, both are like they were created, but the
rocks changed (became detached)!
7. Answer #1: We learn from the Tzad ha'Shavah of a
blemished animal (it changed) and a mountain.
8. Answer #2: We learn from the Tzad ha'Shavah of an
animal and a tree that dried up (if it was not
planted to be Ne'evad (according to Chachamim), or
it was not planted by man (according to R. Yosi
b'Rebbi Yehudah), it is permitted).
(i) Suggestion: We learn from the following that Benei R.
Chiya permit the rocks.
1. Question (Chizkiyah (one of R. Chiya's sons)): If a
Yisrael erected an egg in order to bow to it, what
is the law?
(j) Rejection: Really, Benei R. Chiya forbid the rocks, if a
Yisrael bowed to an egg, even if he did not erect it, it
i. (Assumption: The case is, he erected it and
bowed to it; Chizkiyah was unsure whether or
not erecting it is an action, and we consider
that man had a part in it;
ii. Inference: Had he not erected it, it would be
1. The case is, he erected it and never bowed to it.
(k) Question: According to whom was the question?
1. If according to the opinion (R. Yishmael) that
idolatry of a Yisrael is forbidden immediately (once
it is designated, even before it is Ne'evad), surely
it is forbidden!
(l) Answer: He asked according to R. Akiva; the Yisrael
erected it and never bowed to it, but a Nochri bowed to
2. If according to R. Akiva, idolatry of a Yisrael is
not forbidden until it is Ne'evad!
1. (Rav Yehudah): If a Yisrael erected a brick and
never bowed to it, but a Nochri bowed to it, it is
(m) Chizkiyah asked: perhaps this is only regarding a brick,
because it is recognizable that it was erected (it is
taller when erected), but not regarding an egg;
1. Or, perhaps the erection is considered an action
even regarding an egg!
(n) His question is not resolved.
(a) Question (Rami bar Chama): If one bowed to a mountain,
may its stones be used for the Altar?
1. If something attached is Ne'evad, may it be offered
in the Mikdash?
(b) Answer (Rava): A Kal va'Chomer teaches this: an Esnan
(wages of a harlot) that is detached is permitted to
people (to benefit from it), an attached Esnan may not be
used in the Mikdash;
2. If you will say that it may not be offered (like a
sacrifice) in the Mikdash, may it be used for
something needed for sacrifices (e.g. the Altar)?
1. "Lo Savi Esnan...Beis Hash-m" - the verse does not
distinguish whether or not it is attached;
(c) Objection (Rav Huna brei d'Rav Yehoshua): One can learn
the opposite way!
2. Something detached that was Ne'evad is forbidden to
people, all the more so something attached that was
Ne'evad may not be used in the Mikdash!
1. Something detached that was Ne'evad is forbidden to
people, but something attached that was Ne'evad may
be used in the Mikdash;
(d) Answer (Rava): Since one Kal va'Chomer teaches a
stringency and another teaches a leniency, we learn the
i. "Eloheihem Al he'Harim" - the mountains are not
considered idols, the verse does not
distinguish, it permits them to people and for
use in the Mikdash;
2. An Esnan that is detached is permitted to people,
all the more so an attached Esnan may be used in the
i. "Beis Hash-m" teaches as follows.
ii. (Beraisa - R. Eliezer): "Beis Hash-m" - this
excludes the red heifer (it is not brought in
the Mikdash, an Esnan may be used for it);
iii. Chachamim say, this comes to include gold
plating for the Heichal (an Esnan may not be
used for it).
(e) Question (Rav Papa): Is it really true that we always
learn the stringency?!
1. Regarding sprinkling (with water with ashes of the
red heifer on Shabbos on (Rashi; Rambam - the day
before) Erev Pesach to enable a person to bring the
Korban Pesach), R. Eliezer learns the stringency,
and obligates the person to bring the Pesach, R.
Akiva learns the leniency, and exempts the person
from bringing the Pesach! (And the Halachah follows
(f) Answer: R. Akiva did not really learn a Kal va'Chomer, he
was just trying to subtly remind his Rebbi what R.
Eliezer himself had taught him, that sprinkling is not
permitted for the sake the Pesach.
2. (Mishnah - R. Akiva): Perhaps you should learn
oppositely! Sprinkling (on Shabbos) is only
forbidden mid'Rabanan, it is not permitted for the
sake of bringing the Pesach - all the more so
slaughtering on Shabbos, which is forbidden
(g) Support (Beraisa - R. Akiva): You yourself taught me,
sprinkling on Shabbos is only forbidden mid'Rabanan, it
is not permitted for the sake of the Pesach.
(h) Question (Rami bar Chama): If someone bowed to attached
wheat, may it be used for a Minchah offering?
1. Does Shinuy (a change, i.e. cutting and processing
the wheat to make flour) permit something Ne'evad?