10 votes

Why is Joseph's pit mentioned amid all the Chanukah stuff in tractate Shabas?

This immediately follows another statement of R. Kahana's, which also quoted an exegesis of R. Nasan b. Minyome's in the name of R. Tanchum. Quoting another statement from the same people is pretty ...
msh210's user avatar
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9 votes
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Why does the Mishnah use the terms poor person and homeowner when discussing carrying on Shabbat?

Bartenura Shabbat 1:1: ולהכי נקט הוצאה בלשון עני ועשיר, דאגב אורחיה קמ״ל דמצוה הבאה בעבירה אסורה וחייבין עליה:‏ The reason for discussing carrying between domains in the context of a poor ...
Joel K's user avatar
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8 votes

Was R. Shimon Bar Yochai not part of "R. Shimon Bar Yochai and his companions"?

1) Tosfos to Shabbos 11a (as well as the Ran and others) answers that prayer on 33a refers to Krias Shema specifically. כגון רבי שמעון בן יוחי וחבריו - והא דאמר לקמן (דף לנ:) כי הוה מטי (זמן תפלה) ...
Eliyahu's user avatar
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7 votes

Why was שמאי holding a ruler?

in chovos halevavos gate 9 ch.5 Do so in your heart and mind if you are unable to free your body to matters of the next world due to being so fully engaged with providing for your livelihood ...
ray's user avatar
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7 votes

What does איברא mean?

Here is Jastrow on Eivara (a limb), and Ivra (to be sure). He says that the latter comes from A-V-R, which is a lashon of strength in Aramaic.
רבות מחשבות's user avatar
7 votes
Accepted

Chazal Heimlich Maneuver

Yes, the incantation will work today, but only if you are precise in your pronunciation of the Hebrew letters, in the manner that Chazal historically pronounced them. This is the only incantation ...
josh waxman's user avatar
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6 votes

Why 40 minus 1 - why not just say 39 Melachot?

Four answers to this question are brought here. (summarized below) Tosfos Yom Tov provides the first 3 answers. In his commentary to mishnayot Shabbos 7:2 he writes: Since 39 lashes are referred ...
Menachem's user avatar
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6 votes

Why was שמאי holding a ruler?

The Maharsha there s.v. על רגל אחת explains that Shamai was, in the two accounts in which he was holding the construction cubit (as he was not reported to be holding it in the first account), showing ...
Y     e     z's user avatar
6 votes

Biometric screening on Shabbat

Even if the "listening" circuit is always on, the "action" circuit is turned off until activated. When anything comes near the sensor, it immediately springs into action, searching ...
ElonMusk's user avatar
  • 391
5 votes

Kiddush written on the sukkah

See Mishnah Brurah s.k. 4 that only uses that nullify its kedushah are prohibited. (In addition, I think that the rule of mitzvos lav lehanos nitnu - pleasure of a mitzvah is not considered pleasure -...
Jay's user avatar
  • 6,487
5 votes

What is the source that the תרמודאי were wood merchants?

It's practically impossible to know what Rashi's exact source was, but a few explanations of the word תרמודאי surrounding wood and merchants appear in Otzar HaGeonim, Shabbat pg. 30, so that ...
Double AA's user avatar
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5 votes
Accepted

Confusing Tes with Pei

Here are three ways this Gemara is understood in Rishonim. The Yereim argues that the problem is if you add the green segment, then the non-blue parts make up a Pei, and that's a problem even though ...
Double AA's user avatar
  • 97.4k
5 votes
Accepted

What is the case of a burning thrown object?

The answer is that it doesn't matter what the case is exactly. The Talmud is not responsible to provide an exact scenario. However! It's your lucky day, because the Talmud (ibid.) provides a perfect ...
Hershy S.'s user avatar
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5 votes
Accepted

Why isn't it considered Borer to use a spoon to take cholent from a cholent pot?

Cholent is considered a mixture of beans, potatoes, meat, etc. If you dip into cholent with a spoon, you are separating one glob of cholent from another glob. IOW, you are taking a mixture from a ...
David Kenner's user avatar
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5 votes
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What do the words בֶּאֱמֶת אָמְרוּ teach us in the Mishna?

Bava Metzia 60a: א"ר אלעזר עדא אמרה כל באמת אמרו הלכה היא Rabbi Elazar said: That is to say, every time a halakha is introduced with the phrase: Actually they said, it is an established halakha ...
Joel K's user avatar
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4 votes
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"This is R. M'nachem." So? (שבת עה ע״ב)

R. Ya'akov Bachrach (Nimukei HaGRIV, printed in the back of many editions of the Talmud) has a note on this Rashi, referencing a similarly worded discussion in Chullin 104b: מתני׳ העוף עולה עם ...
Joel K's user avatar
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4 votes

Source of the first verse of the sectarian

@moses in this answer refers to Edgar J. Goodspeed, who in "The Possible Aramaic Gospel", pg. 335, brought Hermann Strack's suggestion that: "It is probably, as Strack suggested, a ...
Harel13's user avatar
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4 votes

Why 40 minus 1 - why not just say 39 Melachot?

R’ Aryeh Kaplan zt”l noted in a class once that Chazal number the melakhos as “40 missing 1”. It could be a shorthand for 39, much the way the “i” is placed before the last “x” in the Roman numeral ...
Micha Berger's user avatar
  • 9,418
4 votes

Sukkos and Chanukah Connection

According to Macabees 2 chapter 1 verse 21 it looks like that year they did not celebrate Sukkot on time until Kislev כא) ועתה כי יש את נפשנו לחוג את יום חנוכת המזבח בעשרים וחמש לחודש כסלו. לא ...
eliavs's user avatar
  • 324
4 votes

Rashi's misquoting in Parashat Pinchas?

Perhaps Rashi attributed the position that Tzelofechad was not the "collector of sticks" (R' Akiva's position) but one of the "Ma'apilim" who prematurely stormed Cana'an in Num 4:14 based on a source ...
Isaac Moses's user avatar
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4 votes

Does a Shli'ach for carrying adopt the sender's designation of the item?

I think it would depend on the agent's intent. The reason why one becomes liable for carrying when the item was predesignated is that the predesignation shows us that the carrier is carrying the item ...
Alex's user avatar
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4 votes
Accepted

Why can a baby get Tzaraas?

Negaim i.e Tzaraas skin disease - takes effect against our will whether we sin or not even without prior warning (despite the fact that sometimes one is warned as questioner assumes)Yalkut Shimoni ...
user15464's user avatar
  • 11.4k
4 votes

Why did the guy on Shabbat 127b change the order of events?

Looks like the Talmud printings may have been based on MSS that had copyist errors. At least one such manuscript was preserved and can be found on the Genizah website, MS CUL: T-S F 2(2).75 (the part ...
Harel13's user avatar
  • 24.9k
4 votes
Accepted

Was Shammai a builder?

Chatam Sofer's commentary on the passage in Masechet Shabbat: הוא הי' ת"ח וגם בנאי
Zarka's user avatar
  • 2,361
3 votes

תיקו How can we rely on Eliyohu to decide halachic issues? The Torah is to be decided on earth.

Commenting on a Talmudic passage (Berachot 3a) in which R. Yosi learned three laws from Elijah the Prophet, R. Zvi Hirsch Chajes essentially asks your question: ק' ע"ד רש"י (שבת ק"ח ע&...
Alex's user avatar
  • 49.1k
3 votes

What is known about the Sage מונבז?

Munbaz is also mentioned in Sifra Metzorah 1:3, Tosefta Shabbat 9:4 and Shevuot 26b. According to Rabbi Reuven Margaliyot in "Lecheker Shemot V'Kinuyim BaTalmud", pg. 12, "Munbaz" ...
Harel13's user avatar
  • 24.9k
3 votes

How can Hashem judge a person לזכות, favourably, as in הדן חבירו לכף זכות דנין אותו לזכות

One simple answer is that there is a difference between לכף זכות, and דנין אותו לזכות. danin לכף זכות alludes to a scale of justice tilting uncertainly (cf. Bertenura to Avot 1:6). One should judge ...
mevaqesh's user avatar
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3 votes
Accepted

What does איברא mean?

Here is what Sokoloff records in his dictionary of Babylonian Aramaic: To answer the etymological question, therefore, the word comes from Middle Iranian.
Argon's user avatar
  • 3,556
3 votes
Accepted

The Gemara says (mesechet shabbat) that one can survive with a rivi'it of blood

Rashi indeed seems to indicate like the OP’s assumption: רביעית דם - חיי אדם תלויים בה A Revi’is of blood - the life of a person depends on it The Gemara in Sotah 5a takes this even further: ...
DonielF's user avatar
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