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Menachos 32

MENACHOS 32 - dedicated by Rabbi Dr. Eli Turkel of Ra'anana, Israel, and his wife. May they be blessed with long years of health and happiness, and may they see all of their children and grandchildren follow them in Torah and Yir'as Shamayim!



(a) We ask on Rebbi Chelbo's testimony of Rav Huna, from a Beraisa, where Rebbi Shimon ben Elazar testified that Rebbi Meir would write Mezuzos on Duchsustus (spliced parchment, which will be explained later). Apart from the fact that he would leave a space both at the top and at the bottom of the Mezuzah, he described the shape of Rebbi Meir's Mezuzos - as 'like a column of a Seifer-Torah' (i.e. long and narrow).

(b) Rebbi Shimon ben Elazar asked Rebbi Meir why he wrote his Mezuzos, Pesuchos - since, in the Torah, the Parshah of Sh'ma is S'tumah.

(c) Rebbi Meir replied - because in the Torah, Parshah of 'Sh'ma' and that of 'Ve'hayah im Shamo'a', are not next to each other.

(d) We reconcile Rebbi Chelbo's testimony of Rav Huna (regarding a Mezuzah being S'tumah) with Rav Chananel Amar Rav's ruling like Rebbi Shimon ben Elazar - by confining the latter to the spaces exclusively.

(a) Rav Menashya (or Rav Shmuel) bar Ya'akov gives the Shi'ur regarding the space on top and the bottom of a Mezuzah - as sufficient to accommodate a clasp (which they would use to prevent the pages from curling).

(b) Abaye asked Rav Yosef whether he did not agree with the previous answer (that Rav's ruling was confined to the space, but did not extend to Pesuchos) - because Rav himself tended to follow the Minhag, and it was customary at that time, to write the Mezuzah S'tumah.

(c) To prove his point, Abaye cited a statement of Rabah ... Amar Rav, that if Eliyahu were to come and teach 'Choltzin be'Man'al, Shom'in Lo' (see Shitah Mekubetzes 3 & 4). Based on the Minhag to perform Chalitzah with a sandal, he added that if he were to teach 'Ein Choltzin be'Sandal, Ein Shom'in Lo'.

(a) Rav Yosef agrees with Rabah's second statement. He quoted Rav's first statement as ' ... Ein Choltzin be'Man'al, Shom'in Lo'.

(b) The ramifications of Rabah and Rav Yosef's dispute are - whether Lechatchilah, one may use a shoe (Rav Yosef) or not (Rabah).

(c) To reconcile Rebbi Chelbo with Rebbi Shimon ben Elazar - Rav Nachman bar Yitzchak amends the latter's testimony to read 've'Oseh Parshiyosehah *Af* Pesuchos'.

(a) The Beraisa prohibits using Parshiyos from a worn-out Seifer-Torah or Tefilin for a Mezuzah - 'L'fi she'Ein Moridin mi'Kedushah Chamurah li'Kedushah Kalah'.

(b) Tefilin possess more Kedushah than Mezuzos - because they comprise four Parshiyos, as opposed to the two of Mezuzah.

(c) We extrapolate from the above reason - that if it was possible to detract from a greater Kedushah, it would be permitted to use the Parshiyos of Tefilin for a Mezuzah.

(d) We reject the proof from there that Mezuzah must be S'tumah, like Tefilin - on the grounds that maybe the Tana is talking about cutting out (not Parshiyos, but) one or two lines from Tefilin and sewing them to a Mezuzah.

(a) According to another Beraisa, one writes Mezuzos on Duchsustus, Halachah le'Moshe mi'Sinai - and Tefilin on K'laf.

(b) If one splices an animal skin - 'K'laf' is the inner part of the outer section (the part that is closer to the skin), and 'Duchsustus', the outer part of the inner section (the part that is closer to hair).

(c) In spite of this distinction, the previous Beraisa intimates that if one was permitted to change from Kedushas Tefilin to Kedushas Mezuzah, one would be able to use the Parshiyos of worn out Tefilin for a Mezuzah - because the distinction is a preference ('le'Mitzvah'), but not Me'akev.

(d) And the Beraisa, which rules ...

1. ... 'Shinah Pasul' - refers to Tefilin, but not to Mezuzos.
2. ... 'Shinah ba'Zeh u'va'Zeh, Pasul' - refers to writing Tefilin on the outer part of K'laf, or (even) the inner part of Duchsustus (see Tosfos DH 'Idi ve'Idi').



(a) We might reconcile 'Shinah ba'Zeh u'va'Zeh, Pasul' with 'Ha'Moridin, Osin' - by making it a Machlokes Tana'im (as we shall now see).

(b) The Tana Kama in another Beraisa rules Pasul. The Tana in the name of Rebbi Acha'i (or Rebbi Akiva or Rebbi Ya'akov) b'Rebbi Chanina - rules that it is Kasher.

(c) When we ask 'Ha Moridin, Osin. ve'Ha Ba'i Sirtut' - we again query the Tana's statement implying that it would be possible to use a Parshah from Tefilin for a Mezuzah, seeing as a Mezuzah requires 'Sirtut' (marked lines across the column, underneath which the Sofer writes the K'sav).

(d) Rav Minyumi bar Chilkiyah ... Amar Rav invalidates a Mezuzah which does not have Sirtut. Rav Minyumi bar Chilkiyah himself - says that it is 'Halachah le'Moshe mi'Sinai'.

(a) We conclude that whether or not, Sirtut is necessary, is a Machlokes Tana'im. Rebbi Yirmiyah quoting Rebbi, rules that Tefilin and Mezuzos ...
1. ... may be written without copying them from a Kasher one.
2. ... do not require Sirtut.
(b) le'Halachah, one is permitted to write ...
1. ... Tefilin without Sirtut, but not Mezuzos.
2. ... Tefilin and Mezuzos without copying them from a Kasher one - because these Parshiyos are well-known, and a Sofer is unlikely to err.
(a) Rav Chelbo saw Rav Huna turn a large jar upside down, place it on the floor and put a Seifer-Torah on it - because the Seifer-Torah was lying on the couch upon which he wanted to sit (and he forbade sitting on a couch on which a Seifer-Torah is lying).

(b) According to Rabah bar bar Chanah Amar Yochanan - there is nothing wrong with sitting on a couch on which a Seifer-Torah is lying ...

(c) ... and the reason that Rebbi Elazar once slipped off the couch on which he was sitting and sat on the floor was (not because the Seifer was lying on that particular couch at the time, but) - because they had placed it on the floor, and he felt distressed at the thought of the indignity to the Seifer-Torah (see Hagahos Radal).

(a) Rav Yehudah Amar Shmuel invalidates a Mezuzah that is written like a letter - meaning that it is written without Sirtut and without due care regarding missing letters and extra letters.

(b) When he explained that he learns this from a 'Gezeirah-Shavah' from 'Kesivah' ("u'Chesavtam") 'Kesivah', he might have been referring to the Pasuk (in connection with the Parshah of Amalek) "K'sov Zos Zikaron ba'Seifer" (and a Seifer, as opposed to an Igeres, is written with care) or he might have been referring to - the Pasuk in Ki-Seitzei (in connection with a Get "Ve'kasav Lah Seifer K'risus" [see Tosfos DH 'Kasvah']).

(c) Rav Yehudah Amar Shmuel renders invalid a Mezuzah that one hangs on the door-post on a stick - on the basis of the Pasuk in Va'eschanan "bi'She'arecha", implying that it must be affixed to the door-post.

(a) We support this with a Beraisa - where the Tana rules that doing just that or fixing the Mezuzah behind the door - constitutes a danger (because it leaves one unprotected from demons [see also Tosfos DH 'Sakanah']).

(b) Munbaz ha'Melech on the other hand, was perfectly justified in hanging a Mezuzah on a stick overnight in the inns that he stopped at - because a guest for less than thirty days, even in Eretz Yisrael, is Patur from Mezuzah (as we shall see in 'ha'Techeiles').

(a) Rav Yehudah Amar Shmuel requires the Mezuzah to be fixed - inside the doorway (to preclude the outer wall of the door-post that faces the street).

(b) We ask - that this is obvious, since the Torah writes "bi'She'arecha".

(c) And we answer by citing a statement of Rava, who said - that it needs to be fixed on the outer Tefach that is closest to the street, as we shall see later) leading us to believe that the further away from the house the Mezuzah is fixed, the better.

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