THOUGHTS ON THE DAILY DAF
brought to you by Kollel Iyun Hadaf of Har Nof
Rosh Kollel: Rav Mordecai Kornfeld
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1) RAMI BAR TAMREI AND THE DISCARDED UDDERS
QUESTION: The Gemara relates that Rami bar Tamrei came to Sura from
Pumbedisa on Erev Yom Kipur. He saw everyone discarding udders, and he
collected them and ate them in order to fulfill the Mitzvah of eating on
Erev Yom Kipur. He used old, dry, moldy grapeskins as fuel to cook the
udders. When asked why he was not wearing Tefilin or Tzitzis, he replied
that he had a stomach illness and was exempt from Tefilin, and that his
clothing was borrowed and was thus exempt from Tzitzis.
Why did Rami bar Tamrei eat old udders cooked over moldy grapeskins in order
to fulfill the Mitzvah of eating on Erev Yom Kipur? Why did he not simply
ask a Jewish family to host him for the meal? Certainly no Jew would turn
him down on Erev Yom Kipur!
ANSWER: RAV CHAIM SHMUELEVITZ zt'l in SICHOS MUSAR (5731, #17) writes that
we see from the conduct of Rami bar Tamrei how important it is to avoid
receiving gifts from others, even at the cost of considerable suffering. The
Gemara in Bava Basra (110a) expresses this point when it commands, "Flay a
carcass in the market for a wage [rather than beg for your livelihood]!"
2) ENFORCING POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE COMMANDMENTS
QUESTION: The Gemara relates that a certain man was being tied in order to
be lashed for failing to honor his parents. Rami bar Tamrei told them to
release the man, because the Beraisa teaches that Beis Din does not
administer punishment to one who refuses to fulfill a Mitzvas Aseh, when the
reward for that Mitzvah is written explicitly in the Torah.
3) FORCING A PERSON TO GIVE CHARITY
RASHI (DH Kafsuhu) cites the Gemara in Kesuvos (86a) and explains that the
standard set of thirty-nine Malkus is administered for one who transgressed
a Mitzvas Lo Sa'aseh, where, Rashi writes, "the transgression has already
been done." However, when one transgresses a Mitzvas Aseh "that is in front
of him" -- that is, he does not want to fulfill the Mitzvah -- Beis Din may
give him Malkus to compel him to do the Mitzvah until his soul leaves him.
Why does Rashi add the words, "the transgression has already been done,"
when he writes that one receives Malkus for transgressing a Lo Sa'aseh? In
addition, why does Rashi add the words, "that is in front of him," with
regard to a Mitzvas Aseh?
ANSWER: The RAN (132b) explains that the expressions "Mitzvas Lo Sa'aseh"
and "Mitzvas Aseh" mentioned in Kesuvos do not refer to every Lo Sa'aseh and
every Aseh. Rather, when it is possible for the person to correct his
transgression at the moment that Beis Din tells him to (for example, if he
is eating Chametz during Pesach, and he is able to stop while it is still
Pesach), and yet he continues to transgress, he is given an unlimited number
of Malkus until he stops transgressing. In contrast, when one has already
transgressed a Mitzvah and can no longer fulfill it (for example, one did
not eat Matzah on the first night of Pesach, and the night has passed), he
receives no more than thirty-nine Malkus, whether the Mitzvah was an Aseh or
a Lo Sa'aseh. (See also TOSFOS in Nazir 20b, DH Rebbi Yehudah, who mentions
This seems to be the intention of Rashi when he adds the words, "the
transgression has already been done," when describing a Lo Sa'aseh, and the
words, "that is in front of him," with regard to a Mitzvas Aseh. The reason
why one receives only one set of Malkus for a Lo Sa'aseh is because "the
transgression has already been done" and cannot be corrected, while one
receives an unlimited number of Malkus for not fulfilling an Aseh because
the Mitzvah "is in front of him" and he is able to fulfill it.
QUESTION: The Beraisa teaches that Beis Din does not administer punishment
to one who is refusing to fulfill a Mitzvas Aseh, when the reward for that
Mitzvah is written explicitly in the Torah.
4) COOKING LIVER WITH OTHER FOOD
This seems to contradict the Gemara in Bava Basra (8b) that says that Beis
Din can force a person to give Tzedakah. The reward for the Mitzvah of
giving Tzedakah is written explicitly in the Torah: "For in return for this
matter, Hashem your G-d will bless you in all of your deeds and in all of
your endeavors" (Devarim 15:10)!
(a) TOSFOS (DH Kol) answers that when the Gemara in Bava Basra teaches that
Beis Din may force a person to give Tzedakah, it means that Beis Din may use
verbal coercion, but not corporal punishment, to force a person to give
(b) Tosfos answers further that the Mitzvah of Tzedakah involves not only a
Mitzvas Aseh, but a Mitzvas Lo Sa'aseh as well. The Torah warns us with a Lo
Sa'aseh not to refrain from giving Tzedakah (Devarim 15:7). Beis Din may
enforce the fulfillment of a Lo Sa'aseh even when the Torah specifies the
reward for that Mitzvah.
(c) Tosfos in Bava Basra (8b, DH Achpei) answers that in the case of the
Gemara there, the Beis Din was able to compel people to give Tzedakah only
because the people of that town explicitly empowered Beis Din with the right
to enforce the Mitzvah of giving Tzedakah.
(d) Tosfos in Bava Basra answers further that Beis Din has the right to
enforce any Mitzvah. The Gemara here means that Beis Din is not *obligated*
to enforce a Mitzvas Aseh when the reward for that Mitzvah is written
explicitly in the Torah.
(e) The RITVA in Kesuvos (49b, DH Aval) explains that even though Beis Din
normally may not force a person to fulfill a Mitzvas Aseh when its reward is
written explicitly, nevertheless Beis Din may force a person to give
Tzedakah, because we do not want the poor to suffer more. (This applies only
to the Mitzvah of Tzedakah and is derived from a verse, as the Gemara in
Rosh Hashanah (6a) discusses.)
(f) The AVNEI MILU'IM offers a novel answer. The SEFER HA'IKARIM explains
that the reward mentioned in the Torah (in Devarim 15:10) is not the reward
for the act of giving Tzedakah, but rather it is the reward for the
*generosity* expressed at the time the Tzedakah is given. The Avnei Milu'im
explains that, according to this, when a person is forced to give Tzedakah
against his will, the reward of the Torah for performing an act of
generosity does not apply to him! (Z. Wainstein)
QUESTION: Abaye requested from Rav Safra that when he goes to Eretz Yisrael,
he should ask the Chachamim what their practice is with regard to liver.
RASHI (DH Kavda) explains that Abaye's doubt regarding liver is whether it
is permitted to cook the liver in the same pot as other food. Since liver
emits blood, it may be forbidden to cook it with other food.
What, though, is the question? If the liver was salted before being cooked,
then the salting process removes the blood and it certainly may be cooked
with other food. If the liver was not salted before being cooked, then it
still contains blood and it certainly may not be cooked with other food!
(a) TOSFOS (DH Kavda) quotes RABEINU TAM who answers that the question
involves liver that was not salted. Perhaps the blood that exits the liver
is not considered "Dam she'Piresh" (the forbidden type of blood; Kerisus
4b), since the liver is considered to be entirely made out of blood, and the
Torah permits eating the liver (as the Gemara earlier (109a) mentions). Even
though the Rabanan may have permitted such blood, perhaps when the liver is
cooked with other food, the Rabanan did not apply the prohibition, since the
blood is not visibly discernible in the mixture.
(b) Tosfos answers further that Abaye's question involves liver that *was*
salted. Perhaps, though, it is prohibited to cook the liver with other food,
because the liver contains so much blood and the salting might not have
removed all of it.
The ROSH (8:27) writes that it appears from the words of Rashi that the
question was whether it is permitted to cook the liver with other food even
after the liver was salted, as Tosfos explains in his second answer. The
Rosh explains that perhaps it is permitted to cook the liver with other food
only when the liver was first roasted, since roasting is a more effective
way of extracting the blood. Since the liver contains so much blood, Abaye
was in doubt that perhaps salting is not powerful enough to extract all of
What indication is there, though, in the words of Rashi that Rashi
understands Abaye's question in the same way as Tosfos does in his second
answer? Rashi (DH Kavda) makes no mention of the liver being salted, and his
words imply that the liver was not salted.
The MA'ADANEI YOM TOV and ROSH YOSEF (in his second answer) suggest that if
Rashi had understood Abaye's question the same way as Tosfos does in his
first answer, then Rashi would have expressed the reason to *permit* cooking
the liver (and not just the reason to prohibit it), because it is not at all
obvious that the liver, with all of its blood in it, should be permitted to
be cooked with other food. In contrast, if Abaye's doubt concerns only liver
after it was salted, then it is not necessary to explain the reason to
permit cooking it with other food, since all meat is permitted once it has
been salted. It is necessary only to explain that it might be forbidden
because the salting might not remove all of the blood from the liver. (D.