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) HALACHAH: A PREFERRED DOCTOR
The Gemara concludes that if one made a Neder not to give pleasure to his
friend, he nevertheless is permitted to perform medical procedures for his
friend. He is not permitted, though, to perform medical procedures for his
friend's animal. The RAN (DH Ela) explains that the Gemara is referring to a
case where there are other doctors available to treat his friend. The Gemara
is teaching that even though there are other doctors available, he is
permitted to treat his friend because "not from all doctors does a person
merit to be healed." Since the person who made the Neder might be the doctor
who can heal his friend, he is permitted to treat his friend. The Ran cites
the Yerushalmi as the source for this ruling.
2) A PREFERRED VETERINARIAN
The words of the Ran are the basis for the ruling of the SHULCHAN ARUCH
regarding the obligation of a doctor to treat patients that come to him. The
Shulchan Aruch (YD 336:1) rules that a doctor who refrains from doing a
medical procedure to heal someone is consider as though he is spilling
innocent blood. Even if there are other doctors who can perform the
procedure, this doctor must treat the patient if he was called on to do so.
RAV MOSHE FEINSTEIN zt'l (in IGROS MOSHE OC I:131) writes that we also learn
from this Yerushalmi quoted by the Ran that if a doctor is requested on
Shabbos to treat a patient whose life is in danger, he may desecrate Shabbos
in order to come, even though there are other doctors available. This only
applies, however, when the patient requested him to be called, or he was
already asked to come. If he was not specifically asked to come, then it is
prohibited for him to be Mechalel Shabbos to treat patients if there are
other doctors available.
QUESTION: The Gemara concludes that if one made a Neder not to give pleasure
to his friend, he nevertheless is permitted to perform medical procedures
for his friend. He is not permitted, though, to perform medical procedures
for his friend's animal. The RAN (DH Ela; see previous Insight) explains
that the Gemara is referring to a case where there are other doctors
available to treat his friend. The Gemara is teaching that even though there
are other doctors available, he is permitted to treat his friend because
"not from all doctors does a person merit to be healed." The Ran writes that
if there were no other doctors available, it would be permitted for him to
treat even his friend's animal, since it is like returning a lost object
which is permitted.
3) EATING MEAT AND DAIRY PRODUCTS AT THE SAME TABLE
REBBI AKIVA EIGER asks how can the Ran compare healing his friend's animal
to returning his friend's lost object? When he returns the lost object, he
is not adding to or improving his friend's possessions. Therefore, it is
permitted. In contrast, when he heals his friend's animal, he is improving
his friend's possessions; it is comparable to feeding his friend's animal
which is prohibited! Why, then, does the Ran (38b, DH she'Im Yirtzeh)
prohibit feeding his friend's animal in order to sustain it, while here he
permits healing the animal?
ANSWER: It could be that healing the animal of his friend and returning his
lost object are more comparable to each other for the following reason.
It is permitted to returning a lost object to the Mudar Hana'ah because two
conditions are fulfilled: first, he is doing a Mitzvah, and second, he is
not giving the Mudar Hana'ah any pleasure from his own money (see Insights
to Nedarim 33 and 38).
The Ran equates saving the life of the animal (when there is no one else to
do so) to returning a lost object, since it fulfills the same two conditions
as returning a lost object: one is doing a Mitzvah by saving his friend's
animal, and one is merely performing a service and is not benefiting his
friend with his money. Even though his friend might enjoy a gain from the
recovery of his animal, treating the animal is permitted since he does so
for the sake of the Mitzvah. In contrast, when he feeds his friend's animal
from his own money, even if he does so in order to keep it alive, his friend
derives direct pleasure from his money and thus it is prohibited (even if he
gave the money for the sake of the Mitzvah of saving his friend's animal).
It could be that Rebbi Akiva Eiger rejected this approach because --
although the Madir is not giving the Mudar Hana'ah any money -- healing the
Muder Hana'ah's animal is still not comparible to returning his lost object.
Rebbi Akiva Eiger seems to have understood that the Muder Hana'ah may not
have any monetary gain from the Madir's acts, even if that benefit is not as
a result of the Madir's money. This idea may be supported from the words of
the Ran (33b) who stresses that returning a lost object is permitted since
he is merely "chasing away a lion" ("Mavri'ach Ari") which is not considered
to be an act of giving Hana'ah. "Mavri'ach" Ari is only considered to be
removing imminent danger to the other's possessions, but not repairing those
that have already been damaged. Rebbi Akiva Eiger understood that a sick
animal is one that is *already* damaged and needs to be fixed, and,
therefore, healing it is considered giving him monetary benefit and not just
"Mavri'ach Ari." Monetary benefit is prohibited even if it is done for the
sake of a Mitzvah.
QUESTION: The Gemara says that if a person makes a Neder prohibiting his
friend from having pleasure from him, the two may eat at the same table but
not from the same plate.
This Halachah seems to contradict the Halachah taught in the Gemara in
Chulin (107b). The Gemara there says that one who is eating dairy foods is
not permitted to eat at the same table as one who is eating meat foods,
since we are concerned that one may eat from the other's food and transgress
the Isur of eating meat with milk. (See SHULCHAN ARUCH YD 88 regarding what
type of separation permits them to eat at the same table.)
Since one who is prohibited by a Neder to derive pleasure from his friend is
prohibited from eating his friend's food, why are they allowed to eat at the
same table? We should be concerned that the Mudar Hana'ah will eat his
friend's food and thereby transgress the Isur d'Oraisa of violating a Neder!
(a) The RASHBA (in Chulin) answers that people are especially afraid to
transgress Nedarim. Therefore, one will not accidentally eat the food that
is prohibited to him by the Neder.
HALACHAH: The SHACH (YD 88:2) writes that it is only prohibited for a person
(Reuven) to eat at the same table with someone else (Shimon) who is eating
food that is prohibited to him (Reuven) when *one* of the following
(b) The ROSH answers that we may assume that two people who made a Neder not
to have any pleasure from each other are not on the best of terms. It is
likely that they hate each other. Therefore, there is no concern that one
will eat from the other's food. In fact, in such a case they may even eat
meat and dairy products at the same table.
1. Shimon is eating something that is permitted to others but not to Reuven
(for example, Shimon is eating dairy products while Reuven is eating meat).
2. Shimon is eating food that is not inherently prohibited to Reuven, but is
only prohibited because of a Neder.
3. The other person is eating bread that is prohibited. (Since bread is a
basic staple, there is greater likelihood that Reuven will inadvertently eat
from Shimon's bread.)
4. The other person is eating Chametz on Pesach (even if it is not bread).
We are more stringent on Pesach, since even a minute amount that might fall
into Reuven's food will prohibit it from being eaten.
If Reuven does not know the other person (and thus is not likely to reach
over and eat the other person's food), then it is permitted to eat with him
at the same table, unless the other person is eating Chametz on Pesach.
Based on these conditions, it is *permitted* to eat at the same table as one
who is eating non-Kosher food, as long as the bread that he is eating is
Kosher. If one does not know the other person, then he is permitted to eat
with the other person even if his bread is not Kosher.