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Berachos 62



(a) Rebbi Akiva learnt from Rebbi Yehoshua (and later Ben Azai from Rebbi Akiva) that when one is in Yehudah, one does not relieve oneself facing East -West; that one does not uncover oneself until one is actually sitting; that one cleans oneself with the left hand.

(b) Their will to learn Torah was so strong, that it overrode all other considerations - even the regular principles of convential modesty and propriety.
Rav Kahana even hid under Rav's bed to observe how Rav behaved during Tashmish - also because he of a strong desire to learn Torah (all of these Chachamim took Shimush Chachamim - which is greater than learning from them - to the extreme)

(c) Rav Kahana found Rav's lightheadedness before the actual Tashmish rather strange. It seemed to him as if Rav was behaving with excessive desire.
(However, as will be explained in Chagigah, it is essential for the woman to feel content during Tashmish; and that is precisely what Rav set out to do).

(d) The four reasons for using the right hand to clean oneself in the bathroom, and not the left are:

1. Because the Torah was given with the right hand.
2. Because one uses it to eat with.
3. Because one uses it to tie one's Tefilin.
4. Because one uses the right hand to help the Ba'al Kore during Leining, by demonstrating the Trop and the vowels, when necessary.
(a) Someone who is modest in the bathroom is spared from snakes, scorpions and demons (i.e. evil spirits).

(b) Some add bad dreams to the list.

(c) Behaving modestly goes together with gentle and quiet behavior. As a result, the snakes and scorpions, which usually react only when they are disturbed, remain unconcerned by his presence, and will therefore not attack him. The demons too, will take pity on him, and leave him alone.

(d) One should also be silent in a bathroom (the Gemara explains elsewhere that this is confined to men, but does not apply to women).

(a) One should accept Yisurin with silence (like Aharon did - as the Pasuk in Shemini testifies "va'Yidom Aharon"), and with Tefilah.

(b) The demon of the 'bathroom' is called 'Sair' (goat), and it also resembles a goat. So, instead of keeping the demons at bay, a goat would serve the self-defeating purpose of actually attracting them.

(c) Before he became Rosh Yeshivah, Rava's wife (Rav Chisda's daughter) used to place a nut in a jar and shake it, to frighten away the would-be attackers (presumably *before* Rava arrived - see 2c).

(d) After he became Rosh Yeshivah, she would make a window in the wall behind which Rava was sitting, and place her hand on his head through the window - and demons will generally not attack two people, as we have learnt earlier (Daf 3b).

(a) Isi ben Yehudah says, that behind a fence, one needs to distance oneself far enough that others will not hear his winds, whereas in an open field, he must distance himself so far that others cannot even see him.

(b)&(c) The Mishnah in Ma'asros is lenient with regards to Taharos (which will become Asur, if they go out of sight in order to relieve themselves).

(d) According to Rav Ashi, Isi does not require him to go completely out of sight, like we thought till now, but far enough for others not to see his body uncovered, even though they can still see him in the distance.

(a) Rav Nachman, basing himself on a Beraisa, which describes a modest person as someone who behaves with extreme modestly in the bathroom, asked that eulogizer whether he had followed the man he was eulogizing to the bathroom. Since obviously, he had not, how would he know that he was truly modest?

(b) Rav Nachman also relied on a Beraisa, which states that, just as a dead man will be punished for his sins, so too, will the eulogizer (and even those who agree with him and answer 'Amen') be punished for calling him a Tzadik, when he is not.

(a) No! It is not necessary to go far away from town by night; one may relieve oneself even in the street or behind a wall of a house.

(b) The Beraisa did not mean to say ... *'ba'Makom* she'Nifneh ba'Yom', but *'ke'Derech* she'Nifneh ba'Yom', with the same amount of modesty as one displays by day.

(c) Rav Ashi explains that, even though one may not be obligated to go out of town in the night as one does by day, one should nevertheless display a parallel sense of modesty, by at least finding a discreet corner, if one is available, and not going in the middle of the street.

(a) 1. 'Hashkem ve'Tzei, Ha'arev va'Tzei' means that one is advised to relieve oneself early in the morning and/or at night-time, in order to avoid having to leave the town; 2. 'Mashmesh ve'Shev, ve'Al Teshev u'Temashesh', is advice against witchcraft, to which a person who loosens his bowels with a twig *after* he sits down, is vulnerable.

(b) Someone who did not pay heed to this last piece of advice, should say when he gets up: 'Lo Li, Lo Li, Lo Tachim' etc.

(c) 1. One should not lie on the ground; and 2. one should not sit on a beam (which is high from the ground), because he may fall off.

(d) It is good for the body to sleep at dawn and to relieve oneself at dawn.




(a) One should ...
1. ... eat and drink as long as one is hungry.
2. ... relieve oneself as long as one feels the urge to go.
In both cases, fulfilling the need after it has subsided, is futile.

(b) Abaye advised the workers passing through the paths of Mechuza on their way to work not to look to the sides, because that is where the women used to relieve themselves early in the morning, and it is not correct to look.

(c) Rebbi Aba commented that Rav Safra was copying the Romans, who behaved immodestly in the bathroom. Have we not learnt that one should not speak in the bathroom? Consequently, why did Rav Safra say 'Come in!'?

(d) Rav Safra however, maintained that he understood Rebbi Aba to be in danger (as we have already learnt with regard to someone who holds back the need to relieve himself).
(It is not however clear, why Rashi does not rather learn that Rebbi Aba's comment pertained to Rav Safra's telling him to enter (not just to the fact that he spoke) since we have learnt in Tamid that once a bathroom was taken, it would be locked.
And it is in connection with that accusation, that Rav Safra needed to justify himself. This explanation answers a number of questions which present themselves according to Rashi's explanation.)

(a) A certain gentile forced Rebbi Elazar out of the 'bathroom', and took his place. It was when he was subsequently bitten by a snake and died, that Rebbi Elazar exclaimed "va'Eten Adam Tachtecha", as if to say that that non-Jew had taken his place to be killed instead of him.

(b) By "ve'Amar", David was referring, not to himself, but to Hashem, who wrote in His Torah ("Im ba'Machteres" etc.) that if Reuven chases Shimon to kill him, Shimon (or anybody else, for that matter) is permitted to kill him.
And "va'Techas Alecha" refers again, not to himself, but to Shaul's modesty, which placed him a cut above anybody else, and saved him from being killed.

(c) When King Shaul wanted to relieve himself, he found a cave within a cave, and a wall within a wall to do so; and even there, he took great care to keep his body covered by his clothes - and all this, despite the fact that, to his knowledge, there was not a soul in sight.

(d) David ha'Melech's clothes no longer kept him warm because, as Chazal have said: 'Someone who shows disrespect for clothes (he cut a piece off King Shaul's cloak) will eventually not be warmed by them'.

(a) Hashem responded to David ha'Melech's calling Him (Kevayachol) a 'Meisis', by indeed becoming a 'Meisis' (Kevayachol) and causing him to count Yisrael (directly, without taking money - the atonement for counting Yisrael) (or as others explain, to count them unnecessarily), thereby bringing a plague on Yisrael.

(b) According to some, the plague lasted only from the time of the Shechitah of the Korban Tamid, till the time its blood was sprinkled; according to others, until midday.

(c) The plague stopped when Hashem saw either Ya'akov Avinu (from "Ka'asher *Ra'am*"), the ashes of Yitzchak (from "Elokim *Yir'eh* Lo ha'Seh" etc.), from the money of the half-Shekalim in the desert - because it is referred to as "Kesef ha'Kipurim" ('money which atones'), or the Beis Hamikdash (from "Asher Ye'amer ha'Yom, be'Har Hashem Yera'eh").

(d) The Gemara prefers the final explanation because the Pasuk ("Asher Ye'amer ha'Yom" etc.) implies that there will come a time when Hashem will appear on that mountain - "ha'Yom", whenever His presence is needed.

(e) The greatest among them was Avishai ben Tzeruyah (David's nephew), and he is the one whom the Angel of Death took.

(a) A Kapendarya is a short-cut, and the acronym is 'Ademakif Darei (Batei)' - 'rather tan go round these rows of houses, rather let me cut through here'.

(b) One may take a short cut through a Shul if: (a) if one did not enter the Shul initially with that intention (e.g. he entered the Shul to Daven or to learn); (b) if the Shul was built on a former public path.

(c) The Gemara initially learns that one may spit in Shul, from the fact that one is permitted to wear shoes in Shul.

(d) The Gemara prefers to learn that one may spit in Shul from the leniency of of wearing shoes, rather than that itis is prohibited from the prohibition of Kapendarya (which is forbidden by a Shul like like it is in the Beis Hamikdash), because of the Beraisa, which learns the prohibition of spitting in the Beis Hamikdash from that of not wearing shoes. So, since we learn spitting from shoes regarding being forbidden in the Beis hamikdash, so too will we learn it from shoes by a Shul - to be permitted).

(a) Rebbi Yossi b'Rebbi Yehudah learns the prohibition of spitting from Mordechai, by whom the Pasuk writes "Ki Ein Lavo El Sha'ar ha'Melech bi'Levush Sak". And if one does not go into the house of the king with sackcloth (which is not intrinsically disgusting), then how much more so does one not spit (which *is*)!

(b) How can we say that, just because we learn the *stringency* of spitting in the Beis Hamikdash from that of wearing shoes, we will also learn the former from the latter regarding the *leniency* of a Shul? Perhaps when it comes to a Shul, we will learn spitting from Kapendarya, to say that the former is forbidden just as the latter is? (Presumably, this is based on the principle that, whenever we have the choice of comparing either 'le'Kula' or 'le'Chumra, we compare 'le'Chumra'.

(c) The Gemara ultimately learns the concession of spitting in Shul from a logical standpoint: the reason that one is permitted to wear shoes in Shul, is because, just as people do not usually object to others wearing shoes in their house, so too, does Hashem not object either (Presumably, taking a short-cut is prohibited, because people would object to their homes being used for that purpose.)
Consequently, spitting (which in those days, when they had earth floors, was neither offensive nor disgusting) is more similar to the wearing of shoes, and will therefore be permitted in Shul, in the same way as the wearing of shoes is.

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