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Sukah 33

SUKAH 33 (Lag b'Omer) - Dedicated by Rabbi Yisroel Shaw in memory of his grandfather, Mr. Bernie Slotin (Dov Ber ben Moshe Mordechai z'l), whose soul ascended to its eternal resting place thirty days ago.


OPINIONS: The Beraisa tells us that if most of the leaves of the Hadas branch dried out, but "it still has in it three Badim of moist leaves" it is valid. Rav Chisda adds that the moist leaves must be at the top of each branch. What does the Beraisa mean that there must be "three Badim of moist leaves" left in order for the Hadas to be valid?
(a) RASHI explains that it means three branches ("Badim") of Hadas, each of which have three moist leaves (on top, according to Rav Chisda). The terminology "it still has in it three branches of moist leaves" is very unclear. What is "it" that has left in it three branches?

The RA'AVAD cited by the ROSH explains that "it" is the Lulav, and it means that "the Lulav still has in it three (Hadas) branches of moist leaves," meaning that each of those three branches has three leafs on it.

The RITVA has an alternative translation of the word "Badim." He says that "Badim" means "Kanim," or "sets of leaves." His explanation of the Beraisa agrees, Halachically, with Rashi's explanation that each Hadas must have at least three moist leaves left on it in order to be valid. When the Beraisa says "*it* still has in it three Badim of moist leaves," "it" refers to the three branches of Hadas, and it means that if "the three branches of Hadas still have in them three *sets* (that is, trios) of moist leaves (one trio of leaves per branch)," then it is valid. If three Hadasim each have left on them one thrio of moist leaves on top, then they are valid.

(b) The ROSH interprets the Gemara differently. He explains the word "Badim" like the Ritva, that it refers to "Kanim" ("sets of leaves"). However, he says that the Beraisa is referring to *one* branch of Hadas and not to three, and it is saying that if "it (one branch of Hadas) still has in it three sets of moist leaves" *anywhere* on the branch, then it is still valid. What then, does Rav Chisda mean when he says that these three sets of leaves must be at the top of each one -- of each what? The Beraisa is only discussing *one* branch, with one top! How can all three sets of leaves be at the top of the branch?

The Rosh explains that Rav Chisda does not mean that the moist leaves have to be at the top of the branch. Rather, he means that of the three sets of leaves on each branch, only one of the three leaves of each set has to be moist, and Rav Chisda is explaining which leaf that has to be. The lowest leaf of the set, which usually is on top of (i.e. covers) the upper two leaves of the threesome, must be moist, because it is the one that is most readily seen.

HALACHAH: The SHULCHAN ARUCH (OC 646:8) cites both opinions. The MISHNAH BERURAH (646:26) rules that the Halachah is like the first opinion, that each branch need only have three moist leaves left on top in order to be valid.


QUESTION: According to Rebbi Eliezer bar'Rebbi Shimon, it is permitted to pick off the berries on a Hadas branch on Yom Tov and it is not considered Tikun Kli (making a new Kli), even though the Hadas branch now becomes valid for the Mitzvah. RASHI explains that it is permitted because one is picking the berries to eat and not to fix the Kli, and thus the resultant Tikun Kli is a Davar sh'Eino Miskaven, since he had no intention to make the new Kli (but rather to eat the berries). The Gemara asks that even though it is a Davar sh'Eino Miskaven, it is a Pesik Reshei (even though he does not intend to fix the Kli, it is definitely going to be fixed as a result of his action), which everyone agrees is Asur. The Gemara answers that he has another valid Hadas, and he does not need the one which has the berries that he is removing.

How does that answer the question that his act is a Pesik Reshei? Even though he has another Hadas, when he picks the berries from the first one he is turning it into a valid Hadas and it is still a Pesik Reshei!


(a) TOSFOS (DH Modeh) says that since the person has another Hadas and he does not need this one, then even if he does fix this Hadas and make it valid, it will only be a Melachah sh'Einah Tzerichah l'Gufah, for which one is Patur according to Rebbi Shimon. Even though Rebbi Shimon agrees that it is Asur mid'Rabanan to do such an act, here his son (Rebbi Eliezer) permits it l'Chatchilah because there is a Mitzvah involved (making a Hadas). (Granted, he does not intent to use this Hadas for the Mitzvah, since he is only picking the berries because he wants to eat them, but since it is possible that someone else will need this Hadas for the Mitzvah, the Rabanan permitted doing a Melachah sh'Einah Tzerichah l'Gufah in this case.)

TOSFOS in Shabbos (103a) suggests another reason why this Melachah sh'Einah Tzerichah l'Gufah is Mutar l'Chatchilah. Picking the berries is not a complete Tikun Kli. It is not a real Tikun, since he is not making a new item. Rather, it is a "Tikun Kal," a quasi-Tikun, since he is merely giving the item a new Halachic status as valid for the Mitzvah. Therefore, the Rabanan did not prohibit it when it is a Melachah sh'Einah Tzerichah l'Gufah.

In Kesuvos (6a) Tosfos suggests another reason why we Rebbi Elazar b'Rebbi Shimon is lenient with this Melachah sh'Einah Tzerichah l'Gufah. If the person never uses the Hadas, it will not be considered a Kli at all. It only becomes a Kli -- retroactively -- when the person decides to use it as a Hadas on Yom Tov. Since the person has another Hadas, and may not need this Hadas for the Mitzvah, picking the berries is really only a *Safek* Melachah sh'Einah Tzerichah l'Gufah and not a certain Melachah sh'Einah Tzerichah l'Gufah. That is why Rebbi Elazar b'Rebbi Shimon permits picking its berries.

(b) The ARUCH (Erech "Pasak," "Savar") cited by Tosfos (Shabbos 103a) explains that a Pesik Reshei is only Asur if one benefits from it. If one does not benefit from the result of the Pesik Reishei it remains a Davar sh'Eino Miskaven which is Mutar (according to Rebbi Shimon).

(Rashi (Shabbos 75a, DH Tefei) seems to express an opinion similar to that of the Aruch, except that Rashi rules that a Pesik Reshei is Mutar only if the resulting Melachah is *detrimental* to the person who does it, and not if he is merely indifferent to it.)

(c) RASHI appears to have an entirely different approach to our Sugya. Rashi explains that "Tikun Kli" is something which depends on a person's personal preferences. That is, a Kli is not an item which has an objective definition. Rather, if a person does not want to use the item which he makes (e.g. the Hadas when he picks the berries), it will not be a Kli; it will be called a berryless Hadas, and not a Hadas which can be used for the Mitzvah. Even if it is later used for the Mitzvah, since the one who picked the berries did not intend to use it no act of Tikun Kli was performed.

Rashi is consistent with his opinion elsewhere. In Shabbos (103a, DH b'Ar'a d'Chavrei), Rashi writes that if a person picks weeds from someone else's garden on Shabbos because he wants to eat the weeds and not because he wants to improve the quality of the garden (since it is not his garden), he is not Chayav because he did not intent to improve the garden by weeding. Since it was not his intention to beautify the garden, it is not considered as though he beautified it. We see from Rashi that beautifying a garden is subjective, dependent upon one's intention. The act is defined differently due to his intention. This opinion is reflected in the MAGID MISHNAH (Hilchos Shabbos 10:17, 12:2) as well.

(Tosfos in Shabbos rejects this approach, because according to it, the reason Rebbi Elazer b'Rebbi Shimon permits picking the berries is not because the formation of the new Kli is a Davar sh'Eino Miskaven which is Mu tar, but because one is not making a new Kli at all. The Gemara should have prefaced this answer with the word "Ela" since it is giving an entirely new answer why picking the berries is permitted.)

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