12th CYCLE DEDICATIONS
 
ROSH HASHANAH 21-25 - Dedicated in memory of Max (Meir Menachem ben Shlomo ha'Levi) Turkel, by his children Eddie and Lawrence and his wife Jean Turkel/Rafalowicz. Max was a warm and loving husband and father and is missed dearly by his family and friends. His Yahrzeit is 5 Teves.

1)

(a)What does the Tana Kama say about a father and son forming a pair of witnesses to testify that they saw the new moon?

(b)Then why does he obligate them both to go to Yerushalayim to testify?

(c)What does Rebbi Shimon say?

(d)What happened to Tuvya the doctor, his son and his freed slave, when they came before ...

1. ... the Beis-Din of Kohanim?

2. ... the Beis-Din ha'Gadol (both of which sat in the Beis Hamikdash)?

1)

(a)According to the Tana Kama - a father and son cannot form a pair of witnesses.

(b)He nevertheless obligates them to go to Yerushalayim - in case, for some reason, one of them is disqualified from testifying, the other one will be able to combine with a third person.

(c)Rebbi Shimon - validates a father and son to testify that they saw the new moon.

(d)When Tuvya the doctor, his son and his freed slave, came before ...

1. ... the Beis-Din of Kohanim - they accepted the former two, but disqualified the latter (like Rebbi Shimon).

2. ... the Beis-Din ha'Gadol (both of which sat in the Beis Hamikdash) - they accepted Tuvya and his freed slave, and disqualified his son (like the Chachamim).

2)

(a)Rebbi Levi attributes Rebbi Shimon's ruling to the Pasuk in Bo "ha'Chodesh ha'Zeh Lachem Rosh Chodashim". To whom does "Lachem" refer?

(b)How do the Rabanan interpret the Pasuk?

(c)Rav Chanan bar Rava rules like Rebbi Shimon. On what grounds (based on our Mishnah) does Rav Huna object to this ruling?

(d)Then on what basis did Rav accept Rav Chanan bar Rava's (oft-repeated) ruling like Rebbi Shimon?

(e)What final ruling do we issue, cited by Tavi brei d'Mari Tavi ... Amar Shmuel?

2)

(a)Rebbi Levi attributes Rebbi Shimon's ruling to the Pasuk in Bo "ha'Chodesh ha'Zeh Lachem Rosh Chodashim" - where "Lachem" refers to Moshe and Aharon (even though they were brothers [see also Tosfos DH 'u'Paslu']).

(b)According to the Rabanan, "Lachem" - indicates that Hash-m handed this issue to important people like Moshe and Aharon (i.e. that it is the head of Beis-Din who must control the fixing of the months, and not anybody else).

(c)Rav Chanan bar Rava rules like Rebbi Shimon. Rav Huna objected to this ruling - on the grounds that not only does Rebbi Yosi in our Mishnah rule like the Chachamim, but he also cites an incident to back it up (and we have a principle 'Ma'aseh Rav').

(d)Rav nevertheless accepted Rav Chanan bar Rava's (oft repeated) ruling like Rebbi Shimon - because he switched the opinions of Rebbi Yosi and Rebbi Shimon (quoting Rebbi Shimon in place of Rebbi Yosi in our Mishnah and Rebbi Yosi in place of Rebbi Shimon). In effect, Rav Chanan bar Rava ruled like Rebbi Yosi in our Mishnah.

(e)The final ruling that we issue, cited by Tavi brei d'Mari Tavi ... Amar Shmuel is - 'Halachah k'Rebbi Shimon.

3)

(a)The Tana of our Mishnah lists five Pesulim (types of people who are invalidated from testifying): a gambler, someone who lends on interest, who indulges in pigeon-racing or who deals with the produce of Shemitah, and a slave. Why is ...

1. ... a gambler not Pasul mid'Oraisa?

2. ... someone who lends on interest not Pasul mi'd'Oraisa?

(b)What do we learn from the Pasuk in Behar (with regard to Shemitah produce) "v'Hayesah Shabbos ha'Aretz Lachem l'Ochlah"?

(c)Why did the Rabanan invalidate the first four Pesulim on the list from testifying?

(d)In what way does the Pesul of a slave differ from the other four Pesulim?

3)

(a)The Tana of our Mishnah lists five Pesulim (types of people who are invalidated from testifying): a gambler, someone who lends on interest, who indulges in pigeon-racing, who deals with the produce of Shemitah, and a slave.

1. A gambler is not Pasul mid'Oraisa - because only someone who actually takes an article from someone by force is called a Gazlan d'Oraisa. A gambler is Pasul because 'Asmachta Lo Kanya' (the loser does not give away his money willingly, and the winner is therefore not permitted to accept it mid'Rabanan.

2. Someone who lends on interest is not Pasul mid'Oraisa either - because, the borrower hands him the money willingly.

(b)From the Pasuk (with regard to Shemitah produce) "l'Ochlah" - we learn "l'Ochlah" 'v'Lo li'Sechorah' (that one may not do business with Shemitah-produce).

(c)The Rabanan invalidate the first four Pesulim on the list from testifying - because they are all suspected of lying in order to obtain money.

(d)The Pesul of a slave differs from the other four Pesulim - inasmuch as he is Pasul from testifying mid'Oraisa (like a woman).

4)

(a)In which areas of Halachah are the above five Pesulim permitted to testify?

(b)In that same area of Halachah, will we also believe ...

1. ... a Gazlan d'Oraisa?

2. ... a slave?

4)

(a)The above five are permitted to testify - that a man died (to authorize his wife to get married) and with regard to Sotah, to say that she actually sinned, to prevent her from drinking the water.

(b)In those same two areas of Halachah ...

1. ... a Gazlan d'Oraisa - is not believed.

2. ... a slave is believed - seeing as a woman is believed, and whenever a woman's testimony is accepted, so too, is that of a slave.

5)

(a)How does one break Shabbos for the witnesses, if they are ...

1. ... ill?

2. ... under threat of attack?

3. ... hungry?

(b)Who is likely to attack them, and on what grounds?

(c)What is the maximum journey for which one breaks Shabbos by traveling to Beis-Din, if necessary (see Tiferes Yisrael)?

(d)What is the source for breaking Shabbos for Eidus ha'Chodesh?

5)

(a)One breaks Shabbos on behalf of witnesses who are ...

1. ... ill - by carrying them to Yerushalayim on a bed, if necessary.

2. ... under threat of attack - by carrying sticks.

3. ... hungry - by taking food with them.

(b)The Baytusim or the Kutim - might have attacked them, simply in order to ruin the Chachamim's plans to declare Rosh Chodesh.

(c)The maximum journey for which one would break Shabbos by traveling to Beis-Din, if necessary, was a night and a day - but to travel for longer than that, would mean that Rosh Chodesh would fall after the thirty-first day of the previous month (which is never permitted).

(d)The source for breaking Shabbos for Eidus ha'Chodesh - is the Pasuk in Emor "Eileh Mikra'ei Kodesh Asher Tikre'u Osam "b'Mo'adam" (as we already mentioned earlier).

HADRAN ALACH, 'ARBA'AH ROSHEI SHANIM'

PEREK 'IM EINAN MAKIRIN'

6)

(a)What does our Mishnah obligate the Beis-Din of the town where the witness who saw the new moon resides to do, in the event that he is unknown to the Beis-Din ha'Gadol?

(b)What does the Tana say about them breaking Shabbos (See Tosfos DH 'Meshalchin')?

(c)Initially, the Beis-Din ha'Gadol used to trust the witnesses (because everyone has a Chezkas Kashrus). When did it become necessary to adopt these measures?

6)

(a)In the event that the witness who saw the new moon is unknown to the Beis-Din ha'Gadol - our Mishnah obligates the Beis-Din of his hometown to send a pair of witnesses with him to testify that he is Kasher.

(b)The Tana - permits them as well, to break Shabbos.

(c)Initially, the Beis-Din ha'Gadol would trust the witnesses (because everyone has a Chezkas Kashrus). It became necessary to adopt these measures - after they discovered that the Baytusim (a sect of Tzedokim) began to hire false witnesses, as we shall see in the Sugya.

22b----------------------------------------22b

7)

(a)We learned in our Mishnah that any witness who was unknown to the Beis Din in Yerushalayim would have to be accompanied by 'Acher'. Why can this not be taken literally? What does the Beraisa say in place of 'another person'?

(b)How does Rav Papa therefore explain 'Acher'?

(c)How does he prove it from the words immediately preceding those in question "Im Ein Makirin Oso ... " (with reference to the actual witnesses themselves)? Why can 'Oso' there not mean one witness?

7)

(a)We learned in our Mishnah that any witness who was unknown to the Beis Din in Yerushalayim would have to be accompanied by 'Acher'. This cannot be taken literally - because one person is not believed to testify in these matters, as we learned in a Beraisa, which says (in place of 'another person') 'Hu ve'Eidav Imo'.

(b)Rav Papa therefore explains 'Acher' to mean 'Zug Acher' (another pair) ...

(c)... and he proves it from the words immediately preceding those in question "Im Ein Makirin Oso ... " (with reference to the actual witnesses themselves), where 'Oso' cannot mean one witness - since the Torah uses the word "Mishpat" with regard to him.

8)

(a)Rebbi Nehora'i went to Usha on Shabbos, to testify on the integrity of a witness. Rav Ashi explains that there was a second witness in Usha who was also able to testify. In that case, what exactly is the Chidush? Why does the Beraisa need to inform us that Rebbi Nehora'i went to Usha on Shabbos?

(b)How do we initially deal with the fact that Rebbi Nehora'i appears to have traveled to Usha on his own on Shabbos?

8)

(a)Rebbi Nehora'i went to Usha on Shabbos, to testify on the integrity of a witness. Rav Ashi explains that there was a second witness in Usha who was also able to testify. The Chidush is - that he was permitted to break the Shabbos, despite the distinct possibility that the second witness would not be at home when they needed him (and Rebbi Nehora'i would have then broken Shabbos in vain).

(b)Initially, we suggest - that Rebbi Nehora'i was actually accompanied by another witness, who is not mentioned, in deference to Rebbi Nehora'i (who was a Tana, whereas the second witness was an ordinary man).

9)

(a)Ula came from Eretz Yisrael and testified that the Beis Din had declared Rosh Chodesh. How does Rav Kahana explain the absence of a second witness (apart from the fact that Ula was a great man, who is believed in such matters) did not require a second witness?

(b)Why is this case any different than the cases in our Mishnah, which require two witnesses?

(c)How do we prove Rav Kahana right?

9)

(a)Ula came from Eretz Yisrael and testified that the Beis Din had declared Rosh Chodesh. Rav Kahana explains that a second witness was not required (apart from the fact that Ula was a great man, who is believed in such matters) - because 'a person will not lie when testifying about something that is bound to become known'.

(b)This case is different than the cases in our Mishnah which require two witnesses - in that the Torah does not require two witnesses to inform the people that it is Rosh Chodesh, as it does there.

(c)We prove Rav Kahana right - by citing a Beraisa which supports him.

10)

(a)Why did the Baytusim try to trick Beis-Din into declaring Rosh Chodesh on the thirtieth of Adar, even though the new moon had not been seen? What were they out to gain?

(b)What happened once when they mistakenly hired a man loyal to the Beis-Din to testify falsely on their behalf? What did he reply when they asked him how he had seen the moon?

(c)What did he claim happened when he looked at it? How did he conclude?

10)

(a)The Baytusim tried to trick Beis-Din into declaring Rosh Chodesh on the thirtieth of Adar, even though the new moon had not yet been seen - to make sure that Rosh Chodesh Nisan fell on Shabbos, so that the Omer (which was brought on the sixteenth of Nisan) should be brought on Sunday (the day after [the first day of] Pesach), which is how they interpreted the Pasuk in Emor "mi'Mochoras ha'Shabbos".

(b)They once mistakenly hired a man loyal to the Beis-Din to testify falsely on their behalf. When Beis-Din asked him how he had seen the moon - he described how it had been crouching between two rocks, its head like that of a calf, its ears like that of a kid-goat, its horns like those of a deer and its tail placed between its thighs.

(c)'I looked at it,' he concluded, 'and got such a shock that I fell over backwards. And if you don't believe me, here is the two hundred Zuz that they gave me'.

11)

(a)Why did the witness condescend to testify in the first place?

(b)What dual ruling did the Beis-Din issue?

(c)What Takanah did Chazal initiate as a result of this episode?

11)

(a)The reason that the 'witness' condescended to testify in the first place - was in order to prevent somebody else (who might have been sympathetic to the Baytusim's cause) from testifying.

(b)The Beis-Din - sentenced the hirer to Malkus and permitted the witness to retain the money (because of 'Hefker Beis-Din Hefker').

(c)As a result of this episode - Chazal instituted the sending of Sheluchim to inform the Bnei Golah, to re-place the quicker and more efficient method of waving torches from mountain-top to mountain-top.

12)

(a)Originally, they used to inform the Bnei ha'Golah that it was Rosh Chodesh by means of torches, which they would wave on pre-chosen mountain-tops. Which three flammable commodities did they tie to the long cedar poles?

(b)What did they do with the pole? How long did they wave it for?

(c)What do we learn from the Pasuk in Shmuel "va'Yisa'em David va'Anashav"?

12)

(a)Originally, they used to inform the Bnei ha'Golah that it was Rosh Chodesh by means of torches, which they would wave on specific mountain-tops. They would tie to the long cedar poles - reeds, oil-wood and the shavings of flax.

(b)They would then proceed - to wave the pole in all six directions (like a Lulav) until they saw the Beis-Din's appointee doing likewise on the next mountain-top.

(c)We learn from the Pasuk "va'Yisa'em David va'Anashav" (referring to David's setting fire to the idols of the Plishtim) - that 'Masi'in' in our Mishnah means 'setting on fire'.

13)

(a)To which night does the Beraisa confine the waving of the poles?

(b)Why did they not wave them after a full month (on the thirty-second night) as well?

(c)Why could they not wave the torches after a full month too, and when Rosh Chodesh fell on a Friday, not wave them at all?

(d)Then what reason does Rebbi Zeira give to explain why Chazal decided to wave them exclusively after short months, and not after full ones? Why not vice-versa?

13)

(a)The Beraisa confines waving the poles - to the night after Rosh Chodesh which fell on the thirtieth.

(b)They did not wave the poles after a full month (on the thirty-second night) as well - because, had they done so, they would have had a problem with a short month, when Rosh Chodesh fell on Friday. The people would have no way of knowing whether the torches followed a short month, and the reason that they waved the torches only on Motzei Shabbos was because of Shabbos, or whether it followed a full month, and they lit it on time.

(c)They might have waved the torches after a full month too, and when Rosh Chodesh fell on a Friday, not wave them at all - but Chazal were afraid that people might think that really it had been a full month, and due to having drunk too much wine on Shabbos, they failed to wave the torches on Motzei Shabbos (see Tosfos DH 've'Ha').

(d)The reason that Chazal decided to wave them only after short months, and not after full ones, and not vice-versa, says Rebbi Zeira, is - because then, the Bnei Golah would always have had to keep two days Rosh Chodesh (causing them to be idle from work unnecessarily for two consecutive days [see Tosfos DH 'Mishum']) until they discovered when Rosh Chodesh really was; whereas now that they lit the torches only after short months, they would know by the night of the thirty-first if Rosh Chodesh had fallen on the thirtieth, and they would be exempt from observing the thirty-first.

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