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prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem

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Moed Katan 21

MOED KATAN 21 - sponsored by Harav Ari Bergmann of Lawrence, N.Y., out of love for Torah and those who study it.



(a) We just learned the obligation to tear Keri'ah standing from the Pasuk "va'Yakam Iyov va'Yikra es Me'ilo". However, we are forced to retract from that source - seeing as the Pasuk there also writes "va'Yagaz es Rosho", and there is certainly no obligation to cut off all one's hair (though it is unclear how, as an Aveil, he was even permitted to do that). So we are forced to say that Iyov went beyond the letter of the law, in which case, we can say the same about tearing Keri'ah standing.

(b) We ultimately learn Keri'ah standing from a Pasuk in Shmuel 2 "*va'Yakam* ha'Melech va'Yikra es Begadav" - where David ha'Melech tore Keri'ah following his son Amnon's murder at the hand of another of his sons, Avshalom.

(c) We are almost forced to retract from that source too, due to the Pasuk there "va'Yishkav Artzah" - because an Aveil is not obligated to lie on the floor (on the contrary, he is obligated to turn over his bed and sleep on it). Consequently, David, too, must have been going beyond the letter of the law, in which case the same can be said about his having torn Keri'ah standing.

(d) We answer that, in fact - "va'Yishkav Artzah" means that he lay on an overturned bed (and it was considered as if he was lying on the floor), so our proof from "*va'Yakam* ha'Melech va'Yikra es Begadav" remains intact.

(a) An Aveil is forbidden to work, bathe, anoint himself, indulge in Tashmish ha'Mitah or wear shoes. He is also forbidden to learn Torah. With the sole exception of Hilchos Aveilus (which are not mentioned here), there is no area of Torah that is permitted to him.

(b) The reason that Torah-study is forbidden more than other Mitzvos is - because Torah-learning makes a person happy (as the Pasuk in Tehilim writes "Pikudei Hashem Yesharim, Mesamchei Leiv"), and is therefore the antithesis of mourning.

(c) A leader of the community is permitted to teach Torah if the community needs him (e.g. to say the communal Derashah) though he is forbidden to employ the services of a Meturgeman (a translator).

(d) That is precisely what happened to Rabah bar bar Chanah when he became an Aveil. First they permitted him to go and give the Derashah, then they forbade him to use a Meturgeman. Rebbi Yehudah b'Rebbi Ila'i, who gave the Derashah when he was an Aveil, using a Meturgemean - did so indirectly (first telling the piece to Rebbi Chananya ben Akavya, who passed it on to the Meturgeman), which is permitted.

(a) Rebbi Eliezer in a Beraisa forbids an Aveil to wear Tefilin for the first three days of his Aveilus. This does not clash with the fact that he is also permitted to wear them from the third day and onwards (third day included) - Rebbi Eliezer holds 'Miktzas ha'Yom ke'Kulo', in which case part of the third day is forbidden, and the rest is permitted.

(b) When he adds that if new visitors come to see him, he need not remove his Tefilin - he means that if, on the third day, after he has begun to put on Tefilin, visitors came, he is not obligated to take them off again.

(c) This is the opinion of Rebbi Eliezer. According to Rebbi Yehoshua ...

1. ... the number of days that an Aveil may not wear Tefilin is two - and not three.
2. ... the Aveil is obligated to remove his Tefilin if new visitors come to see him on the second day after he has already put them on - because we are afraid that, otherwise, the visitors will suspect him of not having worn Tefilin that day.
1. Rebbi Eliezer learns from the Pasuk "va'Yit'mu *Yemei* Ve'chi Eivel Moshe" - that the main Aveilus period is *two* days (the third day is only mi'de'Rabanan - Tosfos DH 'mi'Shelishi').
2. Rebbi Yehoshua learns from the Pasuk "ve'Acharisah *ke'Yom* Mar" - that the main Aveilus is only *one* day (and the second day is only mi'de'Rabanan (ibid.)
1. Rebbi Yehoshua explains - that the Pasuk "va'Yit'mu *Yemei* Ve'chi Eivel Moshe" pertains specifically to Moshe, whose demise was a greater loss to Yisrael than that of other people.
2. Rebbi Eliezer explains that the Pasuk "ve'Acharisah *ke'Yom* Mar" - refers to the bitterness of the mourning, which is strongest on the first day, but does not have any Halachic ramifications.
(c) Ula rules like Rebbi Eliezer, that, on the *third* day, the Aveil does not need to remove his Tefilin when visitors arrive. With regard to with regard to an Aveil ...
1. ... wearing Tefilin on the second day - he rules that he may, like Rebbi Yehoshua.
2. ... removing them once he has already put them on - that he is obligated to remove them (even a hundred times if necessary), which is precisely what Rebbi Yehudah ben Teimah said in a Beraisa.
(a) Rava disagrees with Ula with regard to an Aveil removing his Tefilin on the *second* day once he has already put them on. In his opinion - once the Aveil has begun to put on his Tefilin, he is no longer obligated to remove them when fresh visitors arrive.

(b) Despite the fact that Rava himself ruled above like the Tana of our Mishnah, who requires *three* days of Aveilus, he nevertheless permits Tefilin already on the *second* day - because it is a Mitzvah.




(a) During the first three days of Aveilus - even a poor man who is fed from Tzedakah is forbidden to work.

(b) Between then and the end of the Shiv'ah however - he is permitted to do work discreetly in his house.

(c) The Tana permits a woman to knit during that period.

(a) One Aveil is forbidden to visit another Aveil - for the first three days.

(b) From then until the end of the Shiv'ah - he *may*, but he sits with the Aveilim, and not with the comforters.

(a) During the first three days, an Aveil is not allowed to greet at all.
1. Between the third and the seventh days - he is permitted to reply to someone who greets him, but not to greet first.
2. From the seventh day and onwards - he may even greet as well.
(b) We just learned that all types of greeting are prohibited to an Aveil. Rebbi Akiva gave Shalom to the visitors who came to eulogize his sons who had just died - because it was many people who came to visit him, and greeting them was permitted because of 'Kavod Tzibur'.

(c) We point out a discrepancy between a Beraisa which prohibits greeting an Aveil up to *thirty* days, with what we just learned, that an Aveil is permitted to greet others after *seven* days - and if greeting an Aveil is prohibited, then (we initially contend) an Aveil may certainly not greet others.

(d) The 'Kal va'Chomer' that we just learned is a fallacy - because, even though others are forbidden to greet an Aveil, this since he is *not* in a state of peace. Nevertheless, he may greet others, since they *are*.

(a) One comforts an Aveil but does greet him - *during* the Sh'loshim, and one greets him but does not comfort him - *after* the Sh'loshim.

(b) The Beraisa says that if one meets an Aveil whose wife died and who has already married again - one may ...

1. ... not enter his house to comfort him.
2. ... however, one may comfort him in the street in a quiet undertone, in a reluctant manner.
(a) As we just explained, one is not permitted to greet an Aveil until thirty days. Nevertheless, the Beraisa permits him to reply to the greetings of others - in a case where people who were not aware that he was an Aveil, greeted him.

(b) If someone inadvertently greeted an Aveil *during* the first three days - he must inform him that he is an Aveil, and decline to respond; whereas *after* the first three days - he just responds in a quiet undertone.

(c) One may not greet someone who is an Aveil for his father or mother - even *after* thirty days.

(d) According to the Tana Kama of the Beraisa, if someone meets an Aveil after twelve months, he comforts him without mentioning the deceased. in the opinion of Rebbi Meir - someone who comforts an Aveil after twelve months can be compared to someone who broke his leg, and, after it became cured, a doctor invites him to come and have it broken again and he will treat him, so that everyone should know what a capable doctor he is.

(a) Based on the Tana Kama in the previous Beraisa, when the Tana of the second Beraisa says that after thirty days, one does not comfort an Aveil (implying 'at all') - he means that one comforts him, but without mentioning the name of the deceased.

(b) There is no difference in this regard - between a father and mother after one year, and other relatives after thirty days.

(a) If, during the first three days of Aveilus, one Aveil joins the other Aveilim ...
1. ... from close by - he observes the remaining days of Aveilus that are left together with them.
2. ... from far away - he must count the seven days from scratch.
(b) If, in the former case - he arrives during the Shiv'ah *after* the third day ...
1. ... then, according to the Tana Kama - even if he has come from a from close by, he counts the seven days from scratch.
2. ... according to Rebbi Shimon - he observes the remaining time together with the Aveilim, even if he arrives on the seventh day (i.e. he counts just the short time in the morning and gets-up together with them).
(c) Rebbi Chiya bar Aba Amar Rebbi Yochanan restricts the Din in 1. a. (that the Aveil joins the other Aveilim only for the days that remain) - to where the brother in question is not the oldest sibling; if he is, then he always begins from scratch.
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