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11

The Maharal (Gur Aryeh ibid) explains that the Gemara which says that a person will surely die in a pit full of snakes and scorpions is only when it is full of snakes and scorpions, but this pit just had a few. The Ohr HaChaim explains that the brothers felt Yosef was deserving of death because he had testified falsely about them to their father in matters ...


10

There is dispute among the commentators as to whether or not Ramban meant that seriously or just said it for the debate. R. Yaakov Kamanetzky writes (Emes L'yaakov Genesis 44:18) that Ramban just said it for the sake of the debate. The Chassam Sofer (Orach Chaim 1:16) understands that Ramban was expressing a serious belief, but limited his view to ...


10

This is found in Tanna Devei Eliyahu Rabba, beginning of chapter 18 and Yalkut Shamoni Eicha 1034. The Tanna Devei Eliyahu version is: מאי שפכי כמים לבך נוכח פני ה' מכאן אמרו כל ת"ח שיושב וקורא ושונה ועוסק בתורה הקב"ה יושב כנגדו וקורא ושונה עמו What does "Poor out your heart like water opposite the face of Hashem" mean? From here they said that ...


8

The story is found in מדרש שוחר טוב to Tehillim (39:2). (Menachem's comment [now deleted]) This is probably the earliest source. It is also quoted in the אורחות צדיקים (in שער כ"ה, שער לשון הרע) [on that page, toward the bottom in blue text] (from Menachem, in another deleted comment) According to he.Wikipedia, this story is also quoted in אגדות המלך שלמה ...


8

In Talmud Bavli Rosh Hashanna 20b, R' Zeira quotes R' Nachman as saying: כ"ד שעי מכסי סיהרא לדידן שית מעתיקא ותמני סרי מחדתא לדידהו שית מחדתא ותמני סרי מעתיקא For 24 hours, the [moon] light is covered: For us [in Babylon] - 6 of the old [month] and 18 of the new [month]; for them [in Jerusalem] - 6 of the new and 18 of the old. (Translation ...


6

The Rashb"o in Chindushai HaHagodos (Mosad Horav Kook) to Brochos 54b states that after a long halachik discussion the Ameroim switched to Agadato to awaken the students.


6

R' Tzvi Berkowitz told me that R' Yaakov Kaminetzky told him that the Ramban was only saying that for the purposes of the debate, in order to avoid addressing a question to which they would not accept the answer. This was along the lines of the principle of being "דוחה בקש" (pushing off with straw) someone who asks from an illegitimate standpoint. However, ...


6

I don't know if this is the only time that we learn halacha for shechita from the Binding of Isaac, but according to the Simlah Chadasha (6:5), we learn that the shechita knife must be unattached from the ground in order to be eligible to use for shechita, from the Akeidah. His source (ultimately), is the gemara, Chulin 16a: יתיב רב אחוריה דרבי חייא ...


6

The principles of Occam's razor and תפסת מרובה לא תפסת are not equivalent. Occam's razor is a logical principle stating that when comparing equivalently predictive hypotheses, the one that requires the fewest assumptions is most likely to be correct. The principle of "תפסת" on the other hand, is not a logical principle in the same way. Instead, it is more ...


5

The Eitz Yosef says it might have been a ruse to get them to shave their peyos harosh and beard. The Matna Kehuna says it is a warning to his soldiers and hair of the head is an expressing for finding a person, meaning if he finds any Jew he will chop off the head of the officer who failed to kill the Jew. He brings a variant text where a first proclamation ...


5

The Lubavitcher Rebbe explains that this was actually an answer to Moshe. See an English Essay of it here. Moshe had two arguments why he shouldn't be the redeemer: He didn't want to exalt himself above his older brother He realized he wasn't going to be the final redeemer and therefore thought it was a waste of time for him to take the Jews out of Egypt. ...


5

Gur Aryeh seems to have a very nice explanation. The link is a Google book, so you will find it on p. 34. Paraphrasing: Avraham, Moshe and Mashiach all had an exalted status. They all transcended holiness approaching a Godly level. All 3 people are loftier than time, space and the universe. The donkey is the only non-kosher animal connected with a ...


5

There are many different opinions as to when to place the book of Job. The opinion that Elihu is Yitzhak is different from the opinion that he was an advisor to Pharaoh.


5

According to Rabbi Munk in his commentary on Vay'chi, it is because Esav was attempting to deny that he had sold his "birthright" completely. That is, he claimed that he had sold the "first born" rights and had sold the (future) settlement of the land of Canaan (to avoid the 400 years of slavery that was still ahead) but not the 50% share of the remaining ...


5

I'm not sure that this what you're looking for, but the Gmara in Baba Batra on daf 15 writes: בתר דשכיב משה מי שריא שכינה על עובדי כוכבים והא אמר מר ביקש משה שלא תשרה שכינה על עובדי כוכבים וניתן לו, שנאמר: "ונפלינו אני ועמך". Although it doesn't specify that this was a result of Bilaam but rather a request to make Israel more unique. This Gmara is more ...


5

The difficulty in understanding the Rashi on a simplistic level is that no sacrifice atones for intentional sin. However, if you look at the actual text of the Midrash which Rashi is basing himself off of (Bamidbar Rabba 13:14), the atonement of this sacrifice was for something much more specific. The Medrash recounts how Yehuda was responsible for dipping ...


4

The Shai LaMorah, on Tannah D'vei Eliyahu Zuta 20:6, explains that Hashem will reveal yet-unknown reasons for the Mitzvos and the Torah. Our newfound understanding of the reasons will make it seem as if there's a new Torah. He cites the Iyun Tefillah on the yotzer of Parshas Hachodesh.


4

It is indeed found in the Buber edition of the Tanchumah. In the haaros on the bottom he points to the Yalkut Shimoni in Shir Hashirim chapter 5. And as Matt pointed out its in the Rabba on Shir Hashirim 5:2 as well.


4

The Y'fe Soar (commentary to the Midrash Raba 89:6) explains that Pharaoh saw the interpretation of the dream in the dream itself but forgot it. Since this interpretation didn't remind him of the one he'd seen, he knew it was wrong. Y'de Moshe (commentary to the Midrash Raba there) explains that this interpretation didn't fit the dream very well, to ...


4

The של׳ה found in שער האותיות ק׳ קדושה אות כ׳ח says מפני שפגם הלבנה גרמה האשה הראשונה דהיינו חטא חוה. This is different than the מגן אברהם's wording מפני שהם גרמו פגם הלבנה. The של׳ה can be understood as saying the exact opposite, that the מיעוט הלבנה is connected to causing the original sin. I don't have an out right proof but if you read the section in the ...


4

In a previous M.Y. answer. someone cited Ramba"m's classification of 3 types of individuals who view Midrash. The 3rd one is the one that, I think, is the most applicable: The third category, and there are so few individuals here that they barely constitute a category, is those who assume Chazal were wise and moderate, and seek whatever explanation ...


4

Unfortunately due to lack of definitive timelines (just try to find out when Zoroaster lived) and lack of written evidence which scholars and and historians would accept, it would be hard prove who influenced who. What we do know is that Chazzal were very honest when they did accept anything from anywhere and when there was actual change. See for instance ...


4

Rashi on Chumash channels midrashic works, selecting those midrashim that fit his stated criteria and reworking them to form a commentary. Rashi has favored midrashim on different chumashim. On sefer Shemot, he channels the Mechilta, which is a midrash composed on Shemot. Indeed, follow your link to Shemot 12 and see how many of his sources are from the ...


4

Rashi on Sanhedrin 100a seems to interpret it to mean that he died: גל של עצמות. שמת, דאדם שמת נעשה גל של עצמות. A mound of bones. that he died, for a person who died becomes a mound of bones The Maharal in Chiddushei Aggadoth on Shabbath 34a interprets it to mean sudden death: ועשה אותו גל עצמות. פירוש [מיתה פתאמית] וזה נקרא גל של עצמות ...


3

Reading the definition of Zoroastrianism in different places seems to imply a belief in tw "gods" with one being good (creator) and one being evil (destruction), even though modern people claim that it is monotheistic. In any case, people living in a society have been influenced by that society in the way they think and act, as we see nowadays. However, the ...


3

I heard the following approach from R' Rivlin, Mashgiach of Kerem b'Yavneh. Pharaoh was looking for more than just a clever interpretation based on the art of dream interpretation - he was looking for an interpreter who showed himself to know what the dream was and meant. Pharaoh made slight changes in his relating of the dream, and Yosef identified this ...


3

Rashi's quote from the text is "את-אמתה" so his question must arise from within the quote or from the quote's relationship with the context. He may have been dissatisfied with understanding the quote as 'her handmaiden' because that would raised the following questions: 1) Why does the text specify who was sent? (It was 'only' a maidservant, after all. ...


3

the chasam sofer (shu"t cheilek vov siman tes) qoutes the shaloh answering this question moshe wrote the sifrei torah "bi-hasvoas hakulmos (he wrote with feathers in between each of his hands) which is no better then writing with your weaker hand and that is only a derabanan (which was only institued later) a lot better of a question would be how was it ...


3

Early Rabbinic Views on Understanding Aggadah/Midrash Rav Sherira Gaon 906-1006, head of the Pumbedita Academy Sefer Haeshcol, Hilkhot Sefer Torah, p. 60a Those points brought out from scriptural verses called Midrash and Aggadah areassumptions. Some are accurate such as Rabbi Judahs statement that Simeons portion was included in that of Judah, for we find ...



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