ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem
Previous daf Moed Katan 22
MOED KATAN 22 & 23 (19-20 Cheshvan) - dedicated in memory of Chaim Mordechai
ben Harav Yisrael Azriel (Feldman) of Milwaukee by his family.
(a) We ask what the Din will be if the oldest Aveil arrived at the house of
the Aveilim in the middle of the Shiv'ah from the Beis-ha'Kevaros. This may
be better than if he came from a journey (where we just ascertained that he
observes Shiv'ah on his own - even if he arrived during the first three
days) - because, since he went to the Beis-Olam on account of the Meis, it
may well be considered as if he was in the house together with the Aveilim
with they began.
(b) We resolve this She'eilah from a statement by Rebbi Chiya bar Aba Amar
Rebbi Yochanan - who says that even if the oldest sibling went to the
Beis-Olam, he nevertheless only needs to observe the remaining days of
Shiv'ah together with the other Aveilim.
(c) The Beraisa, which says that he proceeds to sit Shiv'ah on his own -
speaks when he returned after three days.
(d) For the Aveilim who accompany the Meis ...
1. ... all the way to the graveyard - the Aveilus begins as soon as the
grave is covered.
2. ... only part of the way - it begins as soon as they turn away from the
Meis to return home. Rava told the people of Mechuza, who used to accompany
the Meis for part of its journey to Eretz Yisrael - that as soon as they
turned their faces from the gates of the city to return home, they should
begin counting the Shiv'ah.
(a) According to Rebbi Shimon, even if an Aveil arrived on the seventh day,
he joins the Aveilim for however much of the Shiv'ah remains - Rebbi Yosi
bar Shaul Amar Rebbi qualifies this to where there are still visitors
consoling the Aveilim when he arrives.
(b) Rav Anan asks what the Din will be if the Aveil arrived as the visitors
were getting up to leave. This She'eilah - remains unresolved.
(c) Rebbi Yochanan is quoted as ruling like Rebbi Shimon.
(a) Rebbi Yochanan also rules like Raban Shimon ben Gamliel regarding
T'reifus. Raban Shimon ben Gamliel says there - that if a hole in the
intestines of an animal is stopped up with Leichah, the animal is
(b) 'Leichah' is a viscous substance known as glair that emerges from the
intestines when they are squeezed.
(c) Someone went to Eretz Yisrael to hear these rulings direct from Rebbi
Aba B'rei de'Rebbi Chiya bar Aba or Rebbi Zeira, the author of both rulings.
When asked whether he had really heard that ...
1. ... Halachah ke'Raban Shimon ben Gamliel - Rebbi Aba replied that, quite
to the contrary, he had heard that the Halachah was *not* like him.
(d) Rav Nachman rules neither like Raban Shimon ben Gamliel by T'reifus, nor
like Rebbi Shimon by Aveilus. We concur with Rav Chisda and Rebbi Yochanan,
who rule not like Raban Shimon ben Gamliel regarding T'reifus, but like
Rebbi Shimon by Aveilus - based on Shmuel's ruling that we always follow the
lenient opinion in the area of Aveilus.
2. ... Halachah ke'Rebbi Shimon be'Aveil - he replied that this was a
Machlokes between Rav Chisda and Rebbi Yochanan (who hold that it *is*) and
Rav Nachman (who holds that it is *not*).
(a) The Beraisa in S'machos praises someone who hastens the burial of a
Meis - with the exception of one's father or mother, where it is considered
(b) It is praiseworthy to hasten even the burial of one's parents on Erev
Shabbos or Erev Yom-Tov - or if it is raining directly on to the stretcher
on which they are being buried.
(c) An Aveil has the option of minimizing work or of not minimizing it (see
Tosfos quoted in Gilyon ha'Shas) for other relatives. An Aveil for his
parents, says the Tana - is obligated to do so.
(a) For all other relatives, an Aveil has the option of uncovering his
shoulders or of not doing so. An Aveil for his parents, says the Tana - is
obligated to do so (Note: Nowadays, this Halachah is not practiced at all).
(b) That Gadol ha'Dor refrained from uncovering his shoulders when his
father died - in deference to a second Gadol ha'Dor who was present.
(c) Some say that the Aveil in the previous case was Rebbi and the second
Gadol, Rebbi Ya'akov bar Acha - others say the opposite.
(d) The (unresolved) problem with the first Lashon is - that if Rebbi was
the Gadol whose father died, then, seeing as Rebbi's father was Raban Shimon
ben Gamliel, the Nasi, everyone was obligated to uncover his shoulders, even
the second Gadol (so why did Rebbi refrain from tearing Keri'ah)?
(a) An Aveil for all other relatives may have a haircut after thirty days -
for his father and mother, he must wait until his friends shout at him for
having such long hair.
In the second Lashon, Rabah bar bar Chanah permits a Simchas Merei'us
immediately. We again ask from the Beraisa which equates a Simchas Merei'us
with that of a wedding - and we answer that the restriction of thirty days
(referred to in the Beraisa) applies to a member of the group of friends who
is *initiating* the party; whereas Rabah bar bar Chanah speaks about a
return-party when he is *paying back*, an obligation which cannot be avoided
and which all the friends are expected to acknowledge (even the Aveil).
(b) An Aveil for all other relatives may attend a Simchah after thirty days.
According to Rabah bar bar Chanah - the Tana is talking about a friendly
get-together, which friends tend to make for each other in rotation. By a
real Simchah, such as that of a wedding - even an Aveil for other relatives
is forbidden to attend for a whole year.
(c) The (unresolved) problem that we have with Rabah bar bar Chanah's
distinction is from a Beraisa - which distinctly includes both a Simchas
Merei'us and that of a wedding in the Din of thirty days.
(a) When an Aveil for all other relatives tears Keri'ah, he tears one
Tefach - an Aveil for his father or mother, until he uncovers his heart.
(b) We learn from the Pasuk David bi'Vegadav va'Yikra'eim" - that he
minimum Shiur Keri'ah is one Tefach (because "Achizah" ["*va'Yechazek*"]
implies at least a Tefach).
(c) An Aveil for other relatives tears only the top garment - whereas an
Aveil for one's father or mother tears all the garments that he is wearing.
(d) The one exception to that is a sort of head-gear called 'Afekarsusa'
(others describe this a vest, which is worn to absorb the sweat), which even
the latter is not obligated to tear.
(a) The Tana Kama obligates a woman to tear Keria'h just like a man. Rebbi
Shimon ben Elazar says - that when she is an Aveil for her father or mother,
she first tears the innermost garment, folds it and then goes on to the next
one (for reasons of Tz'ni'us).
(b) The Tana Kama of the Beraisa says 'Ratzah Mavdil Kamei Safah, Ratzah
Eino Mavdil' - meaning that if the Aveil so wishes, he does not need to tear
the rim of the garment, thereby dividing it into two (Nimukei Yosef).
(c) This does not apply - to an Aveil for his father or mother.
(d) Rebbi Yehudah learns from the Pasuk in "va'Yechazeik bi'Vegadav
va'Yikra'em *li'Sh'nayim* Kera'im" - that any Keri'ah which does not include
the hem (and does not therefore, divide the garment into two) is not
considered a Keri'ah.
(a) An Aveil for his father or mother may baste (stitch loosely) the
garments after the Sh'loshim.
1. ... An Aveil for other relatives - may baste the garments after the
Shiv'ah, and sew them professionally after the Sh'loshim.
(b) Rebbi Yochanan says that an Aveil for his father or mother must tear
K'riyah with his hands - an Aveil for other relatives on the other hand is
permitted to use a knife.
2. ... a woman who is an Aveil in this regard - may baste her garments
(c) Rebbi Chiya bar Aba Amar Rebbi Yochanan obligates an Aveil for one's
father or mother to tear outside (in public) - an Aveil for other relatives,
even in a room.
(d) Tearing for a Nasi is like tearing for one's father and mother in this
(a) The sole regard in which ...
1. ... a Rebbe, an Av Beis-Din, and others mentioned in the forthcoming
Beraisa who die, resemble parents - is that of 'Ichuy', that sewing the
garments on which Keri'ah was made professionally is prohibited.
(b) When the Nasi died - Rav Chisda instructed Rav Nachman bar Ami to
overturn a mortar, to stand on it and to show everybody that he had torn
Keri'ah for him.
2. ... a Nasi differs from the others mentioned there - is that, like an
Aveil for parents, one is obligated to tear outside, as we just saw.
(c) When a Chacham died, they would uncover their *right* shoulder. For
1. ... the Av Beis-Din - they would uncover the *left* one.
(d) When a Chacham died, his Beis-Hamedrash would close. Upon the demise of
2. ... the Nasi - *both*.
1. ... the Av Beis-Din - they would close all the Batei-Medrash in town,
they would all go to Shul and change their places.
2. ... the Nasi - they would close all the Batei-Medrash, and, if it was a
day on which they were due to Lein, they would enter the Shul, Lein, and
leave again. Everyone would Daven at home.
(a) The Tana Kama, discussing the latter case, says that the people go to
Shul, call up seven, and leave. Rebbi Yehoshua ben Korchah comments on the
words 'and leave' - 'Not that they may then go for a walk, but they sit down
and remain silent.
(b) It was said that Rebbi Chananyah ben Gamliel would say Halachos and
Agados in the house of an Aveil. According to the Tana Kama - neither
Halachah nor Agadah should be said in the house of an Aveil.