CHULIN 31-43 - Two weeks of study material have been dedicated by Mrs. Estanne Abraham Fawer to honor the Yahrzeit of her father, Rav Mordechai ben Eliezer Zvi (Rabbi Morton Weiner) Z'L, who passed away on 18 Teves 5760. May the merit of supporting and advancing Dafyomi study -- which was so important to him -- during the weeks of his Yahrzeit serve as an Iluy for his Neshamah.
1) HALACHAH: PREPARING EARTH FOR "KISUY HA'DAM"
OPINIONS: The Gemara teaches that when one performs the Mitzvah of Kisuy ha'Dam, he must place earth both beneath the blood and on top of the blood of the slaughtered bird or Chayah. Must one actively designate earth by picking it up and placing it on the ground to be used for Kisuy ha'Dam?
(a) RASHI (DH d'Mazmin) implies that the earth must literally be placed underneath the blood, or at least pronounced as earth of Kisuy. If earth just happens to be where the blood falls, the Mitzvah has not been fulfilled. Rashi's source is the Gemara's statement that Rebbi Yonah bar Tachlifa had to "prepare" the earth in the valley for Kisuy.
(b) TOSFOS (Chulin 83b, DH Tzarich) and the ROSH (2:8, 6:10) find Rashi's assertion difficult. They maintain that as long as there is earth underneath the blood, the Mitzvah has been fulfilled, and there is no need to specifically designate the earth for that purpose.
The SHULCHAN ARUCH (YD 28:5) records both opinions. The SHACH points out that if one did not prepare the earth verbally before the Kisuy, there is no need to perform another act of Kisuy. (M. KORNFELD)
2) THE STATUS OF A WAVE
QUESTION: The Gemara quotes the Mishnah in Mikva'os (5:6) which states that if a wave with forty Se'ah of water gushes forth from the sea and falls onto a person, the person becomes Tahor. The Gemara explains that this form of Tevilah is valid only when the person is at the "head" ("Roshin") of the wave, meaning that the wave meets him as it hits the ground, but not when the crest of the wave passes over him while it is still above the ground ("Kipin"). The latter case is not a valid form of Tevilah because it is like immersing "in the air."
The Gemara explains that one might have thought that the Rabanan prohibited Tevilah even in the Roshin of a wave in order that a person not think that he is permitted to immerse in a "Chardalis," a waterfall, or rushing stream, of rainwater.
The Torah speaks of two types of valid Mikva'os. The first is a "Ma'ayan," a natural spring, which does not need forty Se'ah of water to be a valid Mikvah, and its waters may be flowing ("Zochalin"). The second is a stationary body of collected water, or a "Mikvah," which must contain forty Se'ah of water in order to be valid, and the water may not be flowing.
In which category is a wave? If a wave is considered a Ma'ayan, then why does the Mishnah require that it contain forty Se'ah of water? A Ma'ayan does not need forty Se'ah! On the other hand, if a wave is considered a Mikvah, then it should not be able to be Metaher while it is in motion! (See Insights to Chagigah 19:1
ANSWER: The SHACH (YD 201:20) understands that a wave is considered a Ma'ayan. He explains that even though a Ma'ayan does not need forty Se'ah in order to be a valid Mikvah, a wave is different. Since a wave has become detached from its source, it loses its status of a Ma'ayan with regard to the amount of water that it needs in order to be Metaher. Nevertheless, it retains its status of Ma'ayan with regard to its ability to be Metaher while in motion.
Why does a wave have the status of a Ma'ayan with regard to being Metaher while in motion, but not with regard to the amount of water that it needs? If becoming detached from its source removes its status of a Ma'ayan with regard to the amount of water that it needs, then it should also remove its status of a Ma'ayan with regard to being Metaher while in motion!
RAV CHAIM SOLOVEITCHIK (Hilchos Mikva'os 9:6) explains that there are two characteristics of a Ma'ayan: the place in which the water is located is a natural spring, and the water in that place is spring water.
Rav Chaim Soloveitchik explains that the Halachah that a Ma'ayan is Metaher with less than forty Se'ah applies to a place which is categorized as a Ma'ayan. The Halachah that a Ma'ayan's water is Metaher even while in motion applies to water that is categorized as spring water.
This is logical, since the quantity of water contained in the place describes the place, while the action that the water is performing (i.e. flowing or staying still) describes the water.
A wave that becomes detached cannot be classified as a place that is a Ma'ayan, because it is no longer in its place. However, its water is still considered the water of a Ma'ayan, since nothing essential about the water (other than its place) has changed. Therefore, forty Se'ah are required because the place is not a Ma'ayan, but since the water is still considered the water of a Ma'ayan, it can be Metaher while in motion. (Z. Wainstein)
3) THE LOGIC BEHIND THE CONCEPT OF "HECHSHER"
QUESTIONS: The Gemara discusses the Halachah that a food can become Tamei only when it was first "Huchshar l'Tum'ah" by becoming wet, and the owner of the food is pleased that his food became wet. This is learned from the verse, "v'Chi Yutan Mayim Al Zera..." -- "If water has been placed on seeds and then the dead body [of a Sheretz] fell upon them, the seeds are Tamei" (Vayikra 11:38). The word "Yutan" in the verse is written without a "Vav," like the word "Yiten" -- "he places." This teaches that when water or another liquid falls on the food, the food is considered Huchshar l'Tum'ah only if the liquid's presence is desirable to the owner of the food (i.e. it is as though he applied it himself).
(a) Is there any logical basis for the requirement that the owner be pleased that his food became wet in order for it to become Tamei?
(b) If someone other than the owner is pleased that the food became wet, does this constitute "Ki Yiten" such that the food is Huchshar to become Tamei?
(a) The SEFER HA'CHINUCH (#160) explains that even though the requirement of "Ki Yiten" is a Gezeiras ha'Kasuv, a logical explanation may be suggested for it. In general, the laws of the Torah that involve foods apply only to foods that are finished products. For example, the obligation to separate Terumos and Ma'aseros from produce applies only after the produce has been harvested and processed. Similarly, the obligation to separate Chalah from dough applies only after the dough has been kneaded.
Since most people eat fruit only after it has been washed, fruit is not considered a "finished" food until it has been rinsed.
This is also why Rebbi Shimon (Chulin 33a) maintains that Shechitah makes the animal fit to become Tamei. As RASHI (33a, DH Huchsheru) explains, since the Shechitah permits the animal to be eaten, it makes the flesh into a "finished food" with regard to becoming Huchshar for Tum'ah. "Hechsher" comes when the object attains the status of a "finished food."
(b) The Rishonim disagree about whether the consent of the owner is necessary, or anyone's consent suffices.
1. From the fact that the Gemara does not specify who it was who put his hands into the water to take out the fruit that fell in, the RASHBA (DH Peiros) learns that the consent of the owner of the fruit is not necessary in order to be Machshir the fruit. The consent of anyone suffices.
2. The RAMBAM (Hilchos Tum'as Ochlin 12:1) rules that the seven liquids that cause food to become Huchshar for Tum'ah are Machshir only when they are placed on the fruit with the consent of the owner of the fruit. This is also the view of the SEFER HA'CHINUCH (ibid.). (Z. Wainstein)
4) SPECIFIC INTENT FOR "TEVILAH"
QUESTION: The Gemara (31a) records a Machlokes between Rav and Rebbi Yochanan about whether the immersion of a Nidah who immersed in a Mikvah without Kavanah is valid or not. Rav maintains that her Tevilah is effective in permitting her to her husband. Rebbi Yochanan maintains that it is not valid. Rav derives from the laws of Shechitah that Kavanah, specific intent, is not necessary. Therefore, according to Rebbi Nasan who maintains that specific intent for Shechitah is not necessary at all, no intention is necessary for Tevilah as well. According to the Rabanan, who maintain that although intent for Shechitah is not necessary, intent for cutting the Simanim is necessary, a woman does not need to immerse with the intent of "l'Shem Tevilah", but she must have intent to immerse in the water.
Rebbi Yochanan derives from the verse which discusses Tevilah for garments afflicted with Tzara'as that Tevilah needs specific intent even for non-sanctified (Chulin) items. Therefore, he rules that a woman who immerses against her will, without intent, is not valid.
The Gemara explains that if "her friend made her immerse," then the specific intent of her friend suffices and her Tevilah is valid according to everyone.
The OR SAM'EACH (beginning of Hilchos Mikva'os) asks that the Halachah in the case of the writing of a Get is that the Get must be written Lishmah, with specific intent that it is being written for the Gerushin of this man and this woman. If the Get is not written Lishmah, it is invalid, even if someone stood over the scribe and told him to have Kavanah to write it Lishmah. The Get is invalid in such a case because of the principle that a person who has freedom of choice performs his actions on his own accord and not according to the will of another person.
Accordingly, the woman's Tevilah should be invalid, unless she has Kavanah herself. The Kavanah of the one who causes her to immerse should not be effective.
(a) The OR SAME'ACH writes that according to Rebbi Yochanan, who derives from the Tevilah of afflicted garments that a woman's Tevilah needs Kavanah, the Gemara is not problematic. In the case of the Tevilah of clothing, the Torah requires the Kavanah of the person who is immersing the clothing in the water. Similarly, for the Tevilah of a woman, the Kavanah of the person who is immersing the woman in the water suffices.
According to Rav, who derives the Halachah of Kavanah from the laws of Shechitah, the question remains. The Kavanah of the person who immerses the woman in the water should not be effective, just as the Kavanah of the person who tells the scribe to write the Get with Kavanah is not effective.
The Or Same'ach answers that in the case of a Get, the very creation of the Get comes about through the scribe's writing. Since the scribe is the one who creates the Get with his writing, he must have proper Kavanah of Lishmah, and no one else's Kavanah will help. In contrast, the act of Tevilah creates nothing new; it is an act done to a person, either by the person herself or by someone else. Accordingly, the Kavanah of someone else suffices for the Tevilah to be valid.
(b) The MAHARACH OR ZARU'A seems to have a different understanding. He writes that even the Kavanah of one who is merely observing the Shechitah or the Tevilah is effective. He clearly does not follow the Or Same'ach's approach that the other person's Kavanah works because she is the one doing the act of Tevilah. Why, then, is the Kavanah of the one who writes the Get necessary, and the Kavanah of the one who observes the writing of the Get not effective?
The Maharach Or Zaru'a understands that there is a difference between Kavanah to perform an act, and Kavanah to do an act "Lishmah." "Lishmah" is a designation: the Get must be designated for the Gerushin of this woman. Similarly, a Korban must be slaughtered with intent that it is designated for a particular type of Korban. This designation leaves an impression on the Get or the Korban itself and gives the Get or Korban a certain quality. In contrast, for Shechitah (of Chulin) and Tevilah, the animal or person needs no specific designation. Rather, those acts merely must be done with specific intent to perform the act for a certain purpose, but not to effect any particular change. Kavanah, in the case of Shechitah and Tevilah, is not an inherent part of the act, but is merely an additional requirement. Any Jew suffices to provide this type of Kavanah; it does not have to come from the person who performs the act. (Mordechai Zvi Dicker)