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Berachos 33


OPINIONS: The Gemara states that one who forgot to mention Havdalah ("Atah Chonantanu") in Shemoneh Esreh does not have to return and repeat it. At what point in Shemoneh Esreh does he not have to go back to say Havdalah?
(a) The RI (cited by Tosfos 30b, DH Mistavra, and by the Rosh 4:17) maintains that as long as one finished the blessing of "Chonen ha'Da'as," one does not need to recite Havdalah. If one passed the point where Havdalah is normally inserted but did not yet finish the blessing, then he must recite Havdalah and then return to finish the blessing.

(b) RABEINU ELCHANAN (ad loc.) maintains that even if one finished the blessing, one may recite Havdalah. However, if one has already started the next blessing, then one may *not* go back to the previous blessing and add Havdalah.

(c) RABEINU TAM (ad loc.) explains that only if one has finished his entire Shemoneh Esreh does he not go back to recite Havdalah. If, however, he remembers at any other point within his Shemoneh Esreh that he omitted Havdalah, he must go back and recite it. (Tosfos adds that this was the common practice in his day.)

(d) The ROSH understands Rabeinu Tam differently. The Rosh understands that when Rabeinu Tam said that if one has not yet finished Shemoneh Esreh he must go back, this meant that he *may* go back. That is, he is permitted, but not obligated, to go back and recite Havdalah. The Rosh understands Rabeinu Tam's reasoning to be that if one omitted Havdalah, he may go back and recite it as a "Tefilas Nedavah" (see Berachos 21a). However, the Rosh still argues in part with the contention of Rabeinu Tam and maintains that one may return to the beginning of Shemoneh Esreh and Daven it again as a Tefilas Nedavah *while still* in the middle of reciting Shemoneh Esreh. Only if he finished his entire Shemoneh Esreh may he go back and Daven again a Tefilas Nedavah, and recite Havdalah. (Regarding when one may recite a Tefilas Nedavah, see Insights 21:2.)

HALACHAH: The SHULCHAN ARUCH (OC 294:4) rules like the RI (a). In 294:5, the Shulchan Aruch cites the opinion of the Rosh (d) and says that if one already finished his Shemoneh Esreh, he is permitted (but not obligated) to repeat it in order to mention Havdalah.
QUESTION: The Gemara asks, "If one erred in both (the Havdalah of Shemoneh Esreh and the Havdalah that is recited upon a cup of wine), what is the Halachah?" The Gemara answers that he must go back and recite Shemoneh Esreh again.

What does it mean to make a mistake in the Havdalah over wine? If it means that he did not say it, so let him say it now!


(a) TALMIDEI RABEINU YONAH explain that "erred" means that he did something that he was not supposed to regarding the Havdalah over wine, such as eating (or performing Melachah -- RASHBA) before reciting Havdalah (which is forbidden, Pesachim 105a). Since he did two improper things (he omitted Havdalah from his Shemoneh Esreh, and he ate before reciting Havdalah over wine), the Rabanan penalize him and require him to say Havdalah in the best way possible, over wine and in Shemoneh Esreh, and not just to go ahead and recite Havdalah over wine.

(b) TOSFOS REBBI YEHUDAH HE'CHASID (and DIKDUKEI SOFRIM) had a different text in the Gemara, that read, "If one erred *and did not mention [Havdalah]* in both, what is the Halachah?" This reading of the Gemara cannot be understood according to the explanation of Talmidei Rabeinu Yonah. What, then, does it mean to "err and not mention" Havdalah in the Havdalah over wine?

The OR ZARUA (Hilchos Motza'ei Shabbos 91) explains that it means that one recited all of the blessings of Havdalah (the blessings over wine, spices, and flame) but did not recite the blessing of Havdalah itself ("ha'Mavdil"). In such a case, one must go back and recite Shemoneh Esreh.

HALACHAH: The SHULCHAN ARUCH (OC 294:1) rules in accordance with Talmidei Rabeinu Yonah (a). The BI'UR HALACHAH, however, cites an argument among the later authorities whether one must repeat Shemoneh Esreh if one already went ahead and, without asking a rabbi what to do, recited Havdalah over a cup of wine without repeating the entire Shemoneh Esreh.


QUESTION: The Mishnah states that one who says, "Hashem's mercy reaches the mother bird," must be silenced. The Gemara explains (in the second reason) that this is because the Mitzvos are purely Gezeiros, "heavenly decrees upon us to fulfill," and no mercy is involved.

How can it be that there are no reasons behind the Mitzvos? Rebbi Shimon explicitly states (see Yevamos 23a, and other places) that all of the Mitzvos have reasons behind them!


(a) The RAMBAM, in Moreh Nevuchim (3:26,48), explains that this opinion in our Gemara indeed argues with Rebbi Shimon, and maintains that there are no reasons for the Mitzvos.

(b) The RAMBAN (Devarim 22:6) explains that the Mitzvos certainly have reasons. Our Gemara means that the reason behind the Mitzvah of sending away the mother bird is not in order to have mercy *on the bird*. Rather, it is a "Gezeirah" (= decree upon *us* and for our benefit), in order to accustom us to be merciful and inculcate in us that trait. One who is accustomed to being cruel to beasts, becomes cruel by nature in general.

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