The first masechet in Seder Moed

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In what sense is Hanukkah “a Yom Tov like other yamim tovim”?

The Machzor Vitry (§234) finds a scriptural source for Hanukkah in Leviticus 24:2. That the stipulation that Israelites should collect pure olive oil for the menorah should follow on from a ...
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76 views

Why say the rams are reddened?

Among the materials used for the mishkan were "reddened rams' hides" (T'ruma 25:5). There are two ways one can read that phrase: it can mean "reddened hides of rams", that the hides were reddened, or ...
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Why “לא ידענו מה היה לו” if they saw his bier?

My kid asked: Ki Sisa 32:1 says that, when Moshe didn't return from Mount Sinai when the people expected him to, they said "this man Moshe who brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we don't know ...
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Explanation of Mishna in Shabbat

The Mishna in Shabbat (1: 7) states that: בֵּית שַׁמַּאי אוֹמְרִים, אֵין מוֹכְרִין לַנָּכְרִי וְאֵין טוֹעֲנִין עִמּוֹ וְאֵין מַגְבִּיהִין עָלָיו, אֶלָּא כְּדֵי שֶׁיַּגִּיעַ לְמָקוֹם קָרוֹב. וּבֵית ...
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Holes in walls above ten tefach

The Bavli, Shabas 7 amud 2, has a discussion about holes in walls, where things might land if thrown. Holes on the r'shus-hayachid-facing side of a wall are deemed r'shus hayachid, so tossing ...
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79 views

Help me find a source for glossing “sefer” (in Shabbat 14a) as “Torah, Nevi'im, and Ketuvim”

In Shabbat 14a we find a discussion about the Rabbinic enactment that a book (sefer) renders one's hands unclean (which is itself discussed in the Mishnah Yadayim 3:5). Long ago I found a source ...
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Why was שמאי holding a ruler?

The Bavli, Shabas 31 amud 1, has two stories in which a gentile came to Shamay asking to be converted to Judaism, upon which Shamay "pushed him with the construction cubit in his hand". Rashi explains ...
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Why isn't כל הכשר להצניע…‏ in שלחן ערוך?

The seventh chapter of mishnayos Shabas has this general rule ("כלל"): Whatever is fit for storing and people store that [amount of it], and he carried it out on Shabas, he's liable therefor to ...
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On moist and dry plants (שבת פב ע״א)

The Bavli, Shabas 82 amud 1: If before him [after defecating] were a pebble and grasses — [the proper course of action was a matter of dispute between two amoraim,] R. Chisda and R. Hamnuna. ...
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Anyone who says these people sinned is mistaken. For real?

The Gemara (Talmud Bavli Shabbos 55b-56b) relates that several Biblical figures who, from the text itself, seemed to have sinned, in reality did not. These statements take the form of "כל האומר פלוני ...
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104 views

If a hand is 4×4, why not when rain bounces off of it? (שבת ה ע״א)

The Bavli, Shabas 5, amud 1, indicates that a hand is considered to be a physically large enough location that akira (lifting something from its place to transport the object) and hanacha (resting the ...
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No More Zechuth Avoth?

The Gemara (Bab. Shab. 55a) discusses when Zechuth Avoth ceased. I am aware of several opinions in Tosafoth that it ended for wicked people, or it ended for everyone but the very righteous or it ended ...
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Why must not we cry out/make petitions in Shabbat? (Shabbat 12a)

Why we must not cry out/make petitions in Shabbat? (Shabbat 12a) Our Rabbis taught: If one enters [a house] to visit a sick person [on the Sabbath], he should say, 'It is the Sabbath, when one ...
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“This is R. M'nachem.” So? (שבת עה ע״ב)

The Bavli, Shabas 75 amud 2, quotes from a tosefta as follows: If he wrote a single large letter, in whose space there's room to write two, he's exempt [from offering a korban chatas]. If he ...
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60 views

Does חי נושא את עצמו apply only when the human being is conscious?

The concept Gemoro Shabbos 94a that חי נושא את עצמו - a living being “carries itself” - means that someone who carries a living being out on Shabbos unwittingly is not liable to bring a sin offering. ...
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Apartment buildings higher than the shul

Shabbat 11a states that a city in which houses (but not towers or castles/fortresses [unsure about the translation]) are built higher than the synagogue will eventually be destroyed. ואמר רבא בר ...
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How to translate העלם in the context of שבת

The beginning of the seventh chapter of Bavli Shabas (and its commentaries) speaks of instances in which someone forgets that the day is Shabas, forgets that there is such a thing as Shabas ...
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Why doesn't this gemara interpret the mishna as meaning they sell it back?

In Shabbos 120a, the Mishna (first Mishna there) is quoted as saying that after Shabbat, the people who save things from a fire (which become hefker, ownerless) can make up their payment with the ...
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Moshiach and three meals

The Gemara Shabbos 118a says, "Whoever has three meals on Shabbos... will saved on from the birth-pangs of Moshiach." Why specifically 3 meals? Is the Gemara saying that one who specifically eats ...
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Why “בשלמא לרבי יוחנן” on שבת דף סט ע״א?

Various types of m'lacha (labor) are forbidden on the sabbath, and the punishment is a particular form of death called kares (if the perpetrator doesn't get killed by a human-run court). However, if ...
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Did Elisha get his tefillin back?

The story of אלישע בעל כנפים (Elisha-the-man-of-the-wings) is told on Shabbos 130a: דא"ר ינאי תפילין צריכין גוף נקי כאלישע בעל כנפים [...] ואמאי קרו ליה אלישע בעל כנפים שפעם אחת גזרה מלכות הרשעה ...
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“The סיפא is about a coin.” But so is the רישא‎! (‎שבת דף ס״ה‎)

The mishna Shabas, daf 65 in the Bavli: Medeans [may go out on Shabas] with p'rifa. Anyone [may], but the rabbis spoke about what occurs. That is, Medeans do p'rifa, so the rabbis mentioned that ...
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Is the Gemara (Shabbos 116b) quoting the New Testament?

The Gemara in Shabbos (116b) seems to have two quotes from the New Testament, but I'm not sure. ברא וברתא כחדא ירתון - sons and daughters should inherit together and אנא לא למיפחת מן ...
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2answers
44 views

Why is a shepherd's sack better than a treasuress's ring?

The Bavli, Shabas 62 amud 1, as explained by Rashi, continues a long discussion regarding what objects are considered clothing (or adornments), so may be worn outside (an eruv) on Shabas, and what ...
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Help with רש״י ד״ה שנעקרו on שבת דף ס ע״ב

The rabbis enacted a decree: one may not wear shoes with nails in them on Shabas. The Bavli, Shabas 60, has a lengthy discussion in which it tries to pin down the exact parameters of that decree, i.e. ...
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Source of the first verse of the sectarian

It has been proposed that Rabban Gamliel quoted from Matthew 5 17 in his debate with a sectarian in maseches Shabbos 116a-b. See here http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/6495-gamaliel-ii My ...
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1answer
46 views

How are we kings' children and why does it matter?

The mishna, Shabas 14:4 (daf 111 amud 1), cites R. Shim'on as stating that "all Jews are children of kings" (and therefore can use a certain oil on their skin on Shabas). In what sense is it the ...
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161 views

Why do women wear ponytail elastics on Shabas?

So I was studying the start of Bame Isha in the Bavli (Shabas 57), and it seems a woman can't wear a tight strap or string in her hair outside (of an eruv) on Shabas (lest she remove it out of doors ...
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Why “ומייתי להו בשגגה” for a סולם and not for other equipment?

The fifth chapter of Shabas in the Bavli discusses various things an animal can wear in the street on Shabas. Some of them are forbidden because the item may fall off the animal and a person may come ...
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What is a תלא אילן that looks like the תחש?

Shabbat 28a discusses the תחש skin that was used as a covering for the Mishkan. One opinion there (R' Nechemya) says: רבי נחמיה אומר מכסה אחד היה ודומה כמין תלא אילן והא תלא אילן טמא הוא ה"ק כמין ...
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Quote from Meseches Shabbos

I saw a quote in Meseches Shabbos that said, "If you want to do good, Hashem will help you accomplish it." Does anyone know where in that Gemara I can find it?
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How is there a Rshus Harabim according to R' Yehuda?

There is an argument how many walls does a Rshus Harabim need to have to make it a Rshus Hayachid (Deoraisa). R' Yehuda says that one needs two walls, while the Chachamim said one needs three. The ...
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How is this a proof that the Rabbis hold that one cannot continue a stopped circumcision on Shabbat (Shabbat 133b)

The gemara (Shabbat 133b) is trying to identify the Tanna of the Braita above: המל כל זמן שהוא עוסק במילה חוזר בין על הציצין המעכבין את המילה בין על הציצין שאין מעכבין את המילה. פירש על ציצין ...
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Is one allowed to light a candle which has oil on top and water underneath on Erev Shabbos?

The gemara Shabbos 47b says that even on Erev Shabbos one may not place a vessel with water in it under a candle in order that any sparks emitted by the flame should fall into the water, because it is ...
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Is a Sfardi ש incorrect according to this Gemara?

In Masechet Shabbat 104a, it talks about the shapes of the letters, and meaning behind it. One thing it says is: ומאי טעמא שיקרא אחדא כרעיה קאי ואמת מלבן לבוניה? And what is the reason that ...
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To what קולות does “אדם חשוב שאני” apply (שבת נא ע״א)?

Bavli, Shabas 51 amud 1, in my own loose translation: R. Nachman said to his servant Daru: "Insulate some cold water for me, and bring me water that a non-Jewish cook has heated." R. Ami ...
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Is there a need to get nice Tefilin?

Mesechtas Shabbos 133b gives a list of items that one should do with nice things in order to beautify the Mitzva. Conspicuously absent is Tefilin. Is there a source to get nice Tefilin? If not, why is ...
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How is scraping a leaf erasure? (שבת נ ע״ב)

The Bavli, Shabas 50 amud 2 says (according to Rashi's understanding) that one can stick a knife between tightly foliated leaves on a branch on Shabas. Rashi explains: ואין חוששין שמא יגרור הקליפה ...
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Torah attitude toward drinking alcohol

What is the attitude of Chazal toward drinking alcohol? It seems to be have been common practice to drink at night (see Shabbos 10a), was this frowned upon? If so, was it only frowned upon in excess? ...
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Who was laughing when?

The Gemara says: והאמר רב גידל אמר רב כל תלמיד חכם שיושב לפני רבו ואין שפתותיו נוטפות מר תכוינה שנאמר שפתותיו שושנים נוטפות מור עובר אל תקרי מור עובר אלא מר עובר אל תקרי שושנים אלא ששונים לא קשיא ...
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Is the Story About Members of Beis Shammai Killing Members of Beis Hillel True?

The Yerushalmi Talmud at Shabbos 1:4 has a mysterious passage speaking of a time when Beis Shammai literally violently out-dueled Beis Hillel: Mishna: These are the laws they said in the attic of ...
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Why does R. Nachman b. Yitzchak say a blessing, and why does the Bavli include it? (שבת דף מו)‎

The Bavli, Shabas 46: Rav Aviya came to Rava's house; his boots were gross with clay. He set [them] on a bed in front of Rava. Rava minded; [Rava] wanted to bother him. [Rava] said to him: Why did ...
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101 views

Alternative Approaches to Prophetic Follow Through

This question discusses differences between positive and negative prophecy. The mentioned idea states that, while positive prophecy will always occur, negative prophecy may be negated by repentance. ...
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797 views

Why did the rich Gentile buy a pearl?

In the story of Yosef Mokir Shabbat, Yosef is a Jew who honors Shabbat above all, and ends up becoming very rich because of it. There was a very rich Gentile who was told that all of his wealth would ...
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1answer
54 views

What is the throne of glory?

The gemarah in Shabbos 152b talks about souls that come from under the throne of glory. I would like to know conceptually what this is and for what purpose was it created?
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Jerusalem was only destroyed because of these 8 things - how?

In Masechet Shabbat 119b, it brings 8 statements saying "Jerusalem was only destroyed because x". Each time, x changes. How can it say that Jerusalem was only destroyed for one particular thing - 8 ...
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1answer
54 views

How could (or why did) Raba follow Rav's stringencies but not his leniencies?

Eruvin 6 amud 2 says someone who follows the stringencies of Bes Shamay and of Bes Hilel is a fool walking in darkness: rather, it says, one should follow the one or the other, both when it is lenient ...
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Why the different wording for the three proofs atop שבת דף מ ע״א?

The Bavli, Shabas 40 amud 1, cites a disagreement between Rav and Sh'muel. It then brings three proofs to Sh'muel's view. Each proof quotes what appears AFAICT to be a b'raysa, and each proof is ...
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1answer
33 views

Why say oils unfit for Shabas are unfit in the Temple?

The common version of the Bavli, Shabas 21 amud 1, says: Rami bar Chama taught: Wicks and oils that the sages said we don't light with for Shabas — we don't light [the m'nora] with them in ...
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Why does שבת דף לז ע״א reject a valid proof?

The Bavli, Shabas 37 amud 1, wonders about the permissibility of placing a pot of food adjacent to a stove-oven (rather than atop or in it) when the stove-oven has good fuel in it that has not been ...