ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem
Previous dafEruvin 13
ERUVIN 11-15 sponsored by a generous grant from an anonymous donor. Kollel Iyun Hadaf is indebted to him for his encouragement and support and prays that Hashem will repay him in kind.
(a) Either Rebbi Akiva or the Tana Kama holds like Rav Achli, in whose
opinion a Mavoy less than four Tefachim wide does not require any Tikun at
all; the other holds that it does - though we do not know which is which.
(b) Although Rebbi Akiva disagreed with that Talmid - he nevertheless added
that the Halachah was like him, praising him in front of the other Talmidim,
(in spite of his mistake), in order to encourage them to continue to analyze
(c) Whenever the expression 'Mishum Rebbi Yishmael Amar Talmid Echad' - it
is referring to Rebbi Meir, who studied under both Rebbi Yishmael and Rebbi
(a) Rebbi Meir first attempted to study under Rebbi Akiva (like Rav Yehudah
Amar Rav). However, finding him too profound - he went first to study the
texts by Rebbi Yishmael, before returning to study the power of reasoning by
Rebbi Akiva (like the Beraisa).
(b) The Gemara has no way of resolving the discrepancy as to which of his
Rebbes permitted adding vitriol to the ink, and which one forbade it.
(a) When Rebbi Yishmael instructed Rebbi Meir to be careful ...
1. ...not to (inadvertently) omit one single letter - he was referring to
the Pasuk in Yirmiyah "va'Hashem Elokim Emes" where omitting the Alef in
Emes (to read 'Mes') would be blasphemous.
(b) When Rebbi Akiva replied that he added vitriol to his ink - he meant to
say that not only was he an expert in letters (and was not prone to adding
or subtracting letters, but he even went so far as to eliminate the
possibility that a fly may rest on the crown of the 'Daled' and drag the
ink, to turn it into a Resh - by adding vitriol, which the flies found
2. ... not to add one - he was referring to the Pasuk "Vayedaber Hashem"
etc., where it would be blasphemy if one were to add a 'Vav' to the word
"Vayedaber" (to read "va'Yedabru"). (See also Agados Maharsha).
(c) Rebbi Yishmael nevertheless forbade adding ink - because of the Pasuk in
Naso "ve'Kasav ... u'Machah", which implies that the writing must be
erasable. (see Tosfos DH 'Chutz' who discusses how Rebbi Yishmael applies
this to the writing of a Sefer-Torah.)
(a) According to Rebbi Ya'akov, Rebbi Meir confines the prohibition of
adding vitriol to ink - to Parshas Sotah in the Beis-Hamikdash, but not to
Parshas Sotah in a Sefer-Torah.
With regard to Get, the Torah writes "ve'*Kasav* Lah" - implying that the
*writing* must be done for the sake of the woman being divorced (in which
case, a Get written for another woman may not be used) ; whereas by Sotah,
it writes, "*ve'Asa* Lah" (and not "ve'Kasav) - there, it is the Asiyah (i.e. the *erasing*, which needs to be performed for the sake of that woman,
and no other, not the writing (see Tosfos DH 'Asiyah', who discusses from
where Rebbi Acha bar Yashiyah learns to disqualify the Megilas Sotah from a
(b) According to Rebbi Yehudah, one may cut Parshas Sotah from a Sefer-Torah
to use for a Sotah (consequently, any prohibition that applies to Parshas
Sotah in the Mikdash, will also apply to Parshas Sotah in a Sefer-Torah);
whereas according to Rebbi Ya'akov, Parshas Sotah in the Mikdash must be
written specifically for that Sotah, and cannot be taken from a Sefer-Torah.
Consequently, the prohibition of adding vitriol to the ink of Parshas Sotah
will not apply to Parshas Sotah in the Sefer-Torah.
(c) The Tana Kama of the Beraisa forbids using a Megilas Sotah written on
behalf of Rachel, for Leah - because it was written specifically for Rachel,
and not for Leah; consequently, it cannot be used for her; he may well
concede however, that using a Megilah cut from a Sefer-Torah is permitted -
because a Sefer-Torah is written for everybody - the Sotah too.
(d) Rebbi Acha bar Yashiyah, on the other hand, who forbids the use of a
Megilah cut from a Sefer-Torah for a Sotah, may well concede that using a
Megilas Sotah written on behalf of Rachel, for Leah is permitted. Why is
that? Because whereas a Sefer-Torah was *not* written on behalf of a Sotah
at all, a Megilas Sotah *was*, even if it was written for somebody else.
(a) The Halachah is generally not like Rebbi Meir (except when he appears in
the form of a S'tam Mishnah), despite his greatness - because he would bring
convincing arguments for everything, even when it was not Halachah.
Consequently, they were unable to decide what he finally meant.
(b) He was called Rebbi Meir - because he would enlighten the Chachamim in
Halachah (even though they were unable to rule like him, nevertheless, both
sides of every argument became clear - Agados Maharsha).
(c) He was also known as Rebbi Nahara'i and Rebbi Nechemyah.
(d) Rebbi had the edge over his contemporaries - because he saw Rebbi Meir
from behind (had he seen him from the front, he would have been even
sharper). The source for this is the Pasuk "Vehayu Einecha Ro'os es
Mor'echa". (Others say that it was about *Rav* that this was said, not
(a) Sumchus - was a disciple of Rebbi Meir. He was able to give forty-eight
reasons to prove that something was Tamei, and forty-eight reasons to prove
that something was Tahor.
(b) That veteran Talmid could give a hundred and fifty reasons to prove that
a Sheretz was Tahor (see Tosfos DH ' she'Yodei'a').
(c) If a snake, which kills and brings Tum'ah to the world, is not Tamei
when it dies, argued Ravina - then a Sheretz which does *not*, should
certainly be Tahor.
(d) The Gemara rejects this Kal va'Chomer however - on the grounds that the
snake may well cause the person's death, but that has nothing to do with the
ensuing Tum'ah. Perhaps we can go still further, to say that the snake does
not even kill either, as the Mishnah writes in Rosh Hashanah 'Ein ha'Nachash
Memis, Ela ha'Chet Memis' - the snake may bite, but it cannot kill. The
ensuing death and after-effects are the result of the sins of the man
himself (See also Berachos 31a, where the snake bit Rebbi Chanina ben Dosa
and - the snake died, but not Rebbi ben Dosa).
(a) The argument between Beis Hillel and Beis Shamai like whom to fix the
Halachah - lasted three years.
(b) The Halachah was fixed like Beis Hillel (in spite of Beis Shamai's equal
standing) - because they were well-disposed towards Beis Shamai and patient,
and because they would always revise the words of Beis Shamai during their
disputes and demonstrated extreme humility by always mentioning Beis Shamai
(c) In connection with their Machlokes regarding the minimum size Sucah -
the Tana writes 'Halchu Ziknei Beis Shamai u'Veis Hillel ... ', placing Beis
Shamai before Beis Hillel - We learn from here that Beis Hillel were careful
to always mention Beis Shamai first. (Perhaps Rebbi took his cue from there,
to put Beis Shamai first throughout Shas.)
(d) After learning from "u've'Lechtecha va'Derech", that Shema may be
recited even whilst walking - Beis Hillel continue 'Im Ken, Lamah Ne'emar
"be'Shochbecha u've'Kumecha", concerning themselves with Beis Shamai's
source, rather than just dismissing it out of hand, as Beis Shamai evidently
did with Beis Hillel's sources.
(a) We learn from here 1. that when someone makes himself small (before
Hashem), Hashem will elevate him, and vice-versa; 2. that when someone runs
after greatness (to rule over others), greatness will run away from him -
and vice-versa); 3. that anyone who tries to change his destiny by force
(self-pride), will fail - and vice-versa (see Agados Maharsha).
(b) The Gemara decides that it would have been better for a person not to
have been born. However, now that he *has*, he should scrutinize his deeds.
(c) 'Yefashfesh be'Ma'asav'- means to examine one's past deeds, and do
Teshuvah on his sins. 'Yemashmesh be'Ma'asav'- means to examine the deeds
that come to hand: ,when faced with a Mitzvah, he should weigh up the
advantages against the disadvantages - to realize that they are worthwhile
fulfilling; and by Aveiros, he should weigh-up the disadvantages against the
advantages - to realize how worthless they really are.
(a) An Ari'ach - is half of a three by three Tefach brick.
(b) Rebbi Yehudah says that the Koreh must be wide enough to hold an
Ari'ach, but does not actually need the strength to hold it.
(c) According to Rebbi Yehudah - it does not matter if the Koreh is made of
straw, or if it is bent or round, because we consider it as if it was made
of metal, and was straight and square.
(d) One would gauge a round Koreh - by measuring its circumference; if it
measured three Tefachim, then one would know that its diameter was the
required one Tefach.
Note: A Tefach in diameter is really the equivalent of three and a seventh
Tefachim (pye). However, the Navi indicates that, for these purposes, we
reckon an arbitrary three Tefachim - in which case, the Tefach diameter will
also be arbitrary (a little less than a real Tefach) - Tosfos ha'Rosh. See