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prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem

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Berachos 56



(a) Shmuel told the Emperor how he would dream about being captured by the Romans, who would made him grind date-stones with a golden mill. Since this was both frightening and striking, he knew that it would cause him to think about it all day, and consequently, he would be sure to dream about it the following night.

(b) Bar Hedya gave Abaye positive interpretations, and Rava, negative ones, because Abaye paid him for his services, whereas Rava did not.

(a) Rava told the blind men to desist from the third stroke, since it was not included in the dream.

(b) Bar Hedya changed his attitude towards Rava, the moment Rava started to pay him.

(c) He then interpreted ...

1. ... Rava's wall caving in, to mean that he would purchase unlimited property;
2. ... Abaye's house caving in, and the dust falling on Rava, to mean that Abaye would die and that he would take over the mantle of leadership;
3. ... his house falling down and everyone coming to take a brick, to mean that everyone would come to take his Torah sayings;
4. ... his head splitting open and the brains spilling out, to mean that his cushion would split and all the stuffing would spill out;
5. ... the reading of Hallel ha'Mitzri (the equivalent of what we call Hallel), to mean that he was destined to experience a miracle.
(d) Bar Hedya was about to cross over the River in the same ferry-boat as Rava, when it occurred to him that it was unwise to share a ferry with someone with whom a miracle was destined to occur. So he got up to leave the boat - when he dropped his hand-book on dream-interpreting, which Rava picked up.
When Rava saw there that all dreams follow their interpretation (whereas he had always believed that the interpretation was fixed in Heaven, not by the interpreter), he was furious with Bar Hedya for all the misery he had caused him.
3) Rava was willing to forgive Bar Hedya for all of his tremendous monetary losses, for his loss of prestige, his children and his wives, but not for having caused the death of his favorite wife, Rav Chisda's daughter.


(a) Bar Hedya ran away to Rome, because he thought that Galus would atone for his sin and thereby cancel Rava's curse (that he should be delivered into the hands of the ruling power).

(b) Even in Rome, Bar Hedya refused to divulge the danger to the King's wardrobe, because the Master of the King's wardrobe failed to pay him.

(c) When the Master of the King's wardrobe was sentenced to death for allowing the clothes to be eaten by worms, he pointed a finger at Bar Hedya, who had known about it, but had failed to warn him.

(d) They tied Bar Hedya's two hands and feet to two young trees, which they had bent over completely and tied down with ropes. They then cut the ropes, and, when the trees sprang back, Bar Hedya was split into two.



5) Rebbi Yishmael interpreted Ben Dama's dreams like this:

1. His nose falling off, meant that Hashem's burning anger had been removed from him.
2. His two hands being cut off, meant that he would become so wealthy that he would no longer need to work.
3. And his two legs being cut off, meant that he would from now on ride a horse.
4. He would die in Adar and not see Nisan, meant that he was destined to die in great honor ('Adra' means honor), and would not encounter any trials.
(a) The Tzedoki refused to admit that he had stripped the dead of their clothes.

(b) At that moment, a woman entered, who recognized the coat he was wearing as belonging to someone who had been buried in it, so he must have taken it from off the corpse's back.

(c) 'Kepudki', Rebbi Yishmael concluded, must be an acronym of 'Kapa' (beam in Persian and Greek) 'Dika' (meaning tenth in Greek - 'Deca'). So he told the Tzedoki that his father had left him money in the tenth beam, which he subsequently found.

(a) 'Be'er Mayim *Chayim*' can refer either to Torah, which is called life ("Ki Motza'i Matza Chayim" - Mishlei), or life, like the literal meaning.

(b) Dreaming about a bird, a River and a pot signifies peace.

(c) By a pot, we mean an empty one, at least, one that does not contain meat.

(d) The Pasuk "u'Farsa Ka'asher ba'Sir, u'che'Basar be'Soch Kalachas", has negative connotations; which is the source of the statement that we just made - that a pot containing meat is not a good sign in a dream.

(a) Someone who dreams about a dog, should, as soon as he wakes up, quote the Pasuk "u'le'Chol Benei Yisrael" etc., before the other Pasuk ("ve'ha'Kelavim Azei Nefesh") inadvertently comes out of his mouth".

(b) This conforms with the principle that emerges clearly from this Sugya, that whenever the object of a dream can be found in two Pesukim with contrasting connotations, one should immediately give the dream a good interpretation, by quoting the Pasuk with the positive connotation.


1. "Kenei Chochmah" - *one cane* in a dream signifies wisdom.
2. "u've'Chol Kinyanecha, Kenei Binah" - *canes* in a dream signifies understanding.
(a) Kera, Koreh, Kirah and Kanya seen a dream, all have positive connotations .

(b) Kera signifies a lot of Yir'as Shamayim.

(a) Someone who is kicked by an ox in a dream will go on a long journey.

(b) Someone who rides on an ox will rise to greatness, whereas if the ox rides on him, he will die.

(a) If one sees in a dream ...
1. ... a donkey, one can expect salvation.
2. ... a cat (in a place where a cat is called 'Shunra') he will have a nice song (a pleasant era in his life is about to begin); or, (in a place where it is called 'Shinra') it heralds a change for the worse.
3. ... Yishmael ben Avraham, his prayers will be answered.
4. ... a camel, it means that death was due to him, but he was spared.
5. ... Pinchas, it means that he will experience a wonder.
6. ... an elephant (with a saddle), he will experience many wonders.
(b) Elephants are not a good sign in a dream, if he sees them without a saddle.

(c) Monkeys, like elephants, are not a good sign, when seen in a dream.

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