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prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem

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Sanhedrin 68



(a) When Rebbi Akiva paid Rebbi Eleizer a Bikur Cholim visit, they initially sat in his store-room. *Rebbi Eliezer* was sitting - in his canopy.

(b) Hurkenus his son was forced to leave the room with a scolding - when he tried to remove his father's Tefilin, because it was nearly Shabbos (and Hurkanus held 'Shabbos La'av Z'man Tefilin Hi').

(c) Rebbi Eliezer proved to him that ...

1. ... he was perfectly lucid - by pointing out that Tefilin was no more than an Isur Sh'vus (mi'de'Rabbanan), and that ...
2. ... if anything, it was his mother who was confused - for not kindling the Shabbos-lights first (see Tosfos DH 'He'ach').
(d) The prohibition of wearing Tefilin on Shabbos (assuming that Shabbos is not Z'man Tefilin) is - mi'de'Rabbanan, in case one walks out into the street with them, which is a real Isur mi'de'Rabbanan (see Tosfos DH 'la'Chelotz).

(e) Even if he had he gone out into the street with them, he would not have contravened an Isur Sekilah - because he was wearing them, and one is not Chayav for going into the street wearing something in the way that one wears it during the week.

(a) When the Chachamim saw that Rebbi Eliezer was indeed lucid, they entered the room and sat at a distance of four Amos - because he was in Cherem.

(b) When he asked them ...

1. ... why they had come - they replied 'to learn Torah'.
2. ... why they did not come earlier - they replied that they did not have time.
(c) The bad news that he gave them (as a result of their laxness in coming to learn from him) was - that they would all not die a natural death.

(d) And when Rebbi Akiva asked him what was destined to happen to him, he replied - that he would suffer the worst death of all (see Rashash).

(a) Rebbi Eliezer placed his two arms on his heart - and lamented the imminent passing of the two arms that were like two rolled Sifrei Torah.

(b) He told his Talmidim how he had learned much Torah from his Rebbes. He claimed that ...

1. ... in spite of that, gleaned only as much as a dog lapping water from the ocean.
2. ... his Talmidim gleaned from him only as much as the small amount of blue eye-paint that one takes out of the paint-holder on the tip of a splinter of wood or silver.
(c) Rebbi Eliezer had learned - three hundred Halachos in connection with a strong Baheres (the most extreme form of Tzara'as), that nobody had ever asked him about.
(a) He issued a similar complaint with regard to - the Halachos pertaining to the different kinds of Kishuf required to plant a field of cucumbers.

(b) According to others, it wasn't three hundred Halachos that he had learned there - but three thousand.

(c) The only other difference between these two sets of Halachos was, that with regard to the latter set, there was one person who had queried him - Rebbi Akiva.

(d) Rebbi Akiva once asked him ...

1. ... when they were walking together - to teach about planting a field full of cucumbers by means of Kishuf.
2. ... after he had said something and fulfilled his request - Rebbi Akiva asked him to teach him how to remove them (which he did).
(a) The Talmidim then asked him whether - a leather-covered ball, shoe-form, Kamei'a, pearl-bag and small lead weight - are subject to Tum'ah; whether their permanent filling is considered a Beis Kibul (a receptacle), since leather vessels are not subject to Tum'ah unless they are.

(b) He ...

1. ... replied - in the affirmative.
2. ... ruled that should the leather covering split, they can nevertheless be Toveled, because, the cover and the stuffing are considered one vessel (in which case the stuffing is not a Chatzitzah).
3. ... replied, when they asked him further whether a shoe that had still to be removed from the shoe-form was Tamei or Tahor, he replied - (that since the shoe had still to be removed, it was not yet finished, and that it was therefore) 'Tahor' which was significant, inasmuch as it was the last word that he spoke before he died (so that his Neshamah departed with Taharah).
(c) They asked him these She'eilos just then - to ascertain whether he had retracted from his previous stance in his Machlokes with the Rabbanan.

(d) He had not in fact retracted. The Rabbanan ruled that ...

1. ... a ball and a shoe-form that are still whole - are Tahor (because permanent stuffing is not considered a Beis Kibul).
2. ... if their leather covering had split - they cannot be Toveled, because the stuffing is a Chatzitzah.
3. ... the shoe that has still to be removed from the shoe-form - is Tamei, because since any simple person can remove the shoe from the form, it is considered finished.
(a) Immediately after Rebbi Eliezer death, Rebbi Yehoshua announced - that the Neder (in other words, the Cherem) was released.

(b) Rebbi Eliezer died in Caesaria as Shabbos entered. They buried him - on Motza'ei Shabbos in Lod (see Rashash).

(c) All the way from Caesaria to Lod, Rebbi Yehoshua - was beating himself until blood actually flowed from him (see Tosfos DH 'Hayah').

(d) He also delivered a Hesped that began with the Pasuk (said by Elisha, following the departure of Eliyahu) "Avi Avi, Rechev Yisrael u'Farashav". He also lamented - that he had money but no banker to inspect it (meaning that he had She'eilos but no Rav to answer them).

(a) It appears from the pervious Beraisa that Rebbi Akiva learned the Dinim of Kishuf with regard to a cucumber-field from Rebbi Eliezer. In view of our Mishnah, where he is quoted as having learned them from Rebbi Yehoshua - we conclude that he first learned them from Rebbi Eliezer, but he only accepted them after learning them a second time from Rebbi Yehoshua.

(b) And we reconcile Rebbi Eliezer, who actually produced a field of cucumbers with our Mishnah 'Asah Ma'aseh Chayav', by citing Mar who learned from the Pasuk "Lo Silmad La'asos" - that it is only in order to practice witchcraft that it is forbidden to learn about it, but not if it is on order to know the Halachos for Hora'ah (to issue rulings).

***** Hadran Alach 'Arba Miysos' *****



***** ben Sorer u'Moreh *****


(a) Our Mishnah inserts 'ben Sorer u'Moreh' here - because he is punishable by Sekilah (which is what we are currently dealing with).

(b) The ...

1. ... minimum age of a ben Sorer u'Moreh is - when he grows two pubic hairs (that render him bar-Mitzvah).
2. ... his maximum age - when his pubic-hair has grown around (the Gid of the B'ris Milah).
(c) When the Tana uses the word 'Zakan', he refers to the lower beard (i.e. the pubic hair), and he uses this ambiguous word - in order to express himself in a decent way.
(a) Our Mishnah extrapolates from the word "ben" - "Ben", 've'Lo bas', "Ben"; ve'Lo 'Ish' (to preclude both a Katan and a man, from the Din of ben Sorer u'Moreh).

(b) Despite the fact that 'ben' usually implies even under bar-Mitzvah, and 'Ish', from the age of bar-Mitzvah, the Tana interprets "ben" to mean from bar-Mitzvah, and "Ish", only three months later - because a Katan is never Chayav Miysah.

(c) We ask why we need to specifically preclude a Katan from the Chiyuv of a ben Sorer u'Moreh more that any other Mitzvah, where he is automatically Patur. Besides the fact that "ben" implies a Katan, we answer that we might otherwise have thought that he is Chayav - because unlike other sinners, a ben Sorer u'Moreh is punished because of what he will ultimately do, not because of what he has already done (in which case there ought to be no difference between a Gadol and a Katan).

(d) In fact, we interpret the Pasuk "ve'Chi Yiheyeh le'Ish ben Sorer ... " - to mean 'ben ha'Samuch li'Gevoraso shel Ish' (meaning the period immediately following his becoming an Ish).

(a) Rebbi Chiya's Beraisa explains 'ad she'Yakif' to mean - 'until the hair grows around the Gid'.

(b) Rav Dimi adds to this - that it does need to grow around the Beitzim as well.

(c) Rav Chisda rules that the son of a Katan - cannot become a ben Sorer u'Moreh ...

(d) ... and he extrapolates this from the Pasuk "Ki Yihyeh le'Ish ben ... " - "le'Ish ben", 've'Lo le'ben Ben'. In any event, Rav Chisda holds that it is possible for a Katan to father children.

(a) True, Rav Yehudah Amar Rav already used this Pasuk to Darshen 'ben ha'Samuch li'Gevuraso shel Ish'. However, to teach us that Din only, the Torah could have written - "Ki Yihyeh ben le'Ish".

(b) And to teach us only Rav Chisda's Din, the Torah could have written - "Ki Yihyeh ben Ish". "Ki Yihyeh le'Ish ben" enables us to make both D'rashos.

(a) With regard to someone who steals and then swears that he didn't, the Torah writes "ve'Im Ein la'Ish Go'el". This Pasuk must be speaking about - Gezel ha'Ger, since every born Yisrael has blood relations (via descendants of Ya'akov Avinu).

(b) Rabah now extrapolate from there - that it is only when the deceased Ger is an "Ish" that one needs to examine whether he left no children (born after his conversion [who will inherit the stolen money, instead of the Kohen]), but not if he is a Katan (who does not need to be examined ...

(c) ... because, Rabah extrapolates - a Katan cannot have children.

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