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The Vilna Gaon in Shenos Eliyahu writes that the Talmud started with the mitzvah of Krias Shema because this is the first mitzva in which a person becomes obligated, as it begins at nightfall, and will therefore be the first mitzvah they encounter in adulthood. R' Tzaddok HaKohen in Tzidkas Hatzadik explains that blessings express our acceptance of Hashem's ...


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Excerpt from Dafnotes: The Rambam, in his introduction to his commentary on the Mishnah writes that Seder Zera’im, which addresses the mitzvos of the Land (Eretz Yisrael), was placed at the beginning of the six Orders (Sedarim) because it deals with the halachos of food from the vegetable kingdom, which is the foundation for all living existence. ...


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NOTE: both of these are only partial answers; the 1st may be against the Rashba and the 2nd is disputed First Answer The simplest answer might be that the times of getting up and going to sleep are based on when non-Jews, who are exempt from Shema, wake up (after all, non-Jews do make up the vast majority of the human population). Rishonim (see Tos. 2b) ...



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