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Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem

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Berachos 59



(a) Each one rules in its own time: Kesil, which is hot, reigns during the summer, Kimah, which is cold, during the winter. Therefore the one Pasuk speaks in the Summer - so it places Kesil first; the other, in the winter, so it gives precedence to Kimah.

(b) If Akrav's tail was not placed in Nehar di'Yenur, then nobody bitten by a scorpion would ever be cured; they would simply die.

(c) 'Kimah' is a contortion of 'ke'Me'ah' meaning around one hundred, because that is the number of stars that it comprises.

(a) During the great flood, Hashem opened the heavens by taking out two stars from Ayish (through which the water gushed out), and gave them to Kimah.

(b) It is pointless for Kimah to return the two stars to Ayish, because anyway, 'one cannot fill the pit with the earth taken from it', as we learnt above (on 3b). Or because of the principle 'Ein Kategor Na'aseh Sanegor' (Kimah, which became the source of punishment, by taking Ayish's stars, can hardly now become its defense council by returning them).

(c) Hashem created only once - as recorded in Bereishis. From that time on, He only processed, but did not sreate again. Consequently, it was not possible to create two new stars for Ayish.

(d) "ve'Ayish Al Baneha Tanchem" teaches us that eventually, Ayish will recieve its two stars back.

(a) 'Tamya' means bones, and 'Uvei Tamya' is the type of wizard which the Torah calls 'Ba'al Ov', who practices magic through the medium of one of the bones of a dead person.

(b) According to that Uvei Tamya, an earthquake is caused by the two teardrops which Hashem sheds into the ocean (See Maharsha), when he remembers the suffering of Klal Yisrael among the nations. (Perhaps these teardrops are the equivalent of the water - signifying mercy - that one pours into the wine - Din - to dilute the Din with Rachamim). (In all likelihood, the other interpretations of this phenomenon are also expressions of Hashem's feelings [Kevayachol] when He remembers the suffering that the nations of the world cause Yisrael.)

(c) Rav Ketina did not want to accept the Uvei Tamya's version of the cause of an earthquake, in order that people should not stray after his ideologies.

(d) An earthquake might also be the result of Hashem kicking the sky, or through His pushing His legs (Kevayachol) under His Holy Throne, until it reaches the earth.

(a) Rav Acha bar Ya'akov ascribes the thunder to the lightning flashes striking the clouds, which, in turn, results in the hail which is sticking to the clouds, breaking - up. This explanation is more logical, since thunder always closely follows lightning.

(b) By winds, the Tana of our Mishnah means storm winds - hurricanes.

(c) A hurricane *can* blow at night-time, provided it began in the day.

(d) A hurricane *can* last for more than two hours, but not consecutively - it must abate for a short while, within two hours.

(a) A solitary flash of lightning, white or blue lightning, clouds that rise in the West but come from the South and two clouds that approach each other from opposite directions are all bad signs (Midas ha'Din).

(b) This means that one has to Daven for Rachamim when they occur.

(c) But should they occur in the morning, then they are of no significance.

(d) When, in the morning, the sky is overcast with thick clouds, then it is a sign of rain, and the wheat-seller is advised to fold his sack and go to sleep; but plain clouds in the morning, are of no significance, because they will just disperse.

(a) We learn from "ve'ha'Elokim Asah she'Yir'u mi'Lefanav", that Hashem created thunder (and implements it) in order to straighten the crookedness in our hearts (by instilling the fear of G-d into them).

(b) In kabalistic terms, the rainbow is a sign of Hashem's Glory. Therefore Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi ruled that one should bow down when it appears (like Klal Yisrael would bow down whenever Hashem's Glory appeared in the desert).

(c) They vehemently disagreed with Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi in Eretz Yisrael, because it appears as if one is bowing down to the rainbow.

(d) The text of the Berachah over seeing a rainbow is 'Baruch ... Zocher ha'B'ris, ve'Ne'eman bi'Veriso, ve'Kayam be'Ma'amaro'.

(a) 'K'roch ve'Tani' means that both Berachos apply to both lists in the Mishnah. In that case, whether one sees mountains or seas, or shooting stars or earthquakes, one recites both 'Oseh Ma'aseh Bereishis' and 'she'Kocho u'Gevuraso Malei Olam'.

(b) According to Rava, the Tana is telling us that for the first list only one recites 'she'Kocho u'Gevuraso' etc. in addition to 'Oseh Ma'aseh Berishis'.
In the second list, one is restricted to 'Oseh Ma'aseh Bereishis' (in the opinion of Tosfos, the Tana means not 'and', but 'or', meaning that one has a choice of which Berachah to recite - according to Rava)
(It is as if the Tana had written by the first last 'also' - according to Tosfos, 'or' -, and by the second one, 'only').

(c) Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi means that, if it rained all night and, in the morning, the sky cleared, then one recites 'Baruch ... Oseh Ma'aseh Bereishis'.

(d) According to Rafram bar Papa, this situation has never happened since the destruction of the Beis Hamikdash (see Maharsha).




(a) Upon seeing the sun at exactly the same spot in the sky as when it was created - in the Tekufah of Nisan every twenty-eighth year on the morning following that Tuesday night, at the fourth hour after nightfall, one recites 'Baruch Oseh Ma'aseh Bereishis'. During the first hour of that night (at the creation, and subsequently, every twenty-eight years), the planet Shabsai is visible (because the planets' order according to the nights, is 'Katznash Chalam' - See next question).

(b) 'Shetzem Chanchal' stands for the seven planets: Shabsai, Tzedek, Ma'adim, Chamah, Nogah, Kochav and Levanah.
The order in which they appeared at the beginning of the day - each day of the week i.e. Shabsai appeared first - at the creation - during the first hour of Sunday morning, Tzedek during the first hour of Tuesday morning, Ma'adim of Wednesday etc.
The order that they appear at night, beginning with Motza'ei Shabbosis , 'Shetzem Chanchal' - i. e. Shabsai appears during the first hour of Motza'ei Shabbos, Tzedek during the first hour of Sunday night, Ma'adim, on Monday night etc. This was the order at the time of the creation, and it is the order which is resumed on the night of Tekufas Nisan every twenty-eight years.
The order in the day, starting from Sunday morning, is 'Chalam Katznash', as we explained.

(c) It is only if one has not seen the mountains or the sea for thirty days that one needs to recite the Berachah again.

(a) One no longer recites a Berachah over major rivers, once they have been diverted, and have left the course which they ran at the time of the creation.

(b) 'Chidekel' is the acronym of 'Chadin ve'Kalin' which means sharp and light (i.e. weighs little). 'P'ras' is the acronym of 'Parin ve Ravin', because the waters of the River P'ras are self-generating.

(c) The inhabitants of Mechuza were sharp because they drank the waters of Diglas (alias Chidekel); their children were reddish, because they used to have marital relations by day (when the sun, which is inherently red, was shining.
And their eyes used to jump, because they lived in dark houses.

(a) One recites the Tefilah of 'Modim Anachnu Lach' etc., when 'the Chasan goes to greet the Kalah' - i.e. when so much rain has fallen that the drops of water in the pool that has already collected, rise to meet the drops that are falling.

(b) The Berachah ends 'Baruch ... Rov ha'Hoda'os ve'ha'Keil ha'Hoda'os'.

(c) One recites 'ha'Tov ve'ha'Meitiv' when there is an abundance of rain (and 'Modim' when there is not), and also, when one actually possesses land (and 'Modim' when he does he not).

(a) Anything that one buys new and of which one is the sole owner, he recites 'Shehechiyanu'; whereas if the ownership is shared, then the Berachah is 'ha'Tov ve'ha'Meitiv'.

(b) Rain is different, because even if the one particular field belongs solely to *him*, the benefit of the rain is shared by everyone, so the Berachah is always 'ha'Tov ve'ha'Metiv'.

(c) When one's wife gives birth to a boy, the appropriate Berachah is 'ha'Tov ve'ha'Meitiv', because a boy is a Simchah which is shared by his wife (note, that according to the Mishnah Berurah, one recited a 'Shehechiyanu' over the birth of a girl, because it cannot be worse than finding a lost article, which requires a 'Shehechiyanu'.

(d) Upon hearing that one's father died, one recites 'Baruch ... Dayan ha'Emes', and 'Baruch ... ha'Tov ve'ha'Meitiv', (if one has brothers), because of the inheritance that one is due to receive (if he is the only son, he recites 'Shehecheyanu').

(a) One needs to recite a new Berachah over a second glass of wine when it is being drunk in another location.

(b) One recites 'ha'Tov ve'ha'Meitiv' over a different wine, only if it is superior to the first, and only if at least two people are drinking it (and only if it was brought in afterwards, but not if the wine was already there when he recited the Berachah over the first wine).

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