1) LAWS OF "TUM'AH": USING AN OBJECT FOR ITS ORIGINAL PURPOSE
OPINIONS: Rebbi Yochanan says that to be Mekabel Tum'as Mes, an object must be used for its original purpose. Rebbi Yochanan states that "we say Amod v'Na'aseh Melachteinu" (literally, "stand and we shall perform our work") with regard to Tum'as Mes. What does this expression mean?
(a) RASHI explains that this means that a utensil which broke must serve in its original capacity (to some extent) in order to be considered Tamei even when it is broken. Thus, if we can say to the utensil, "Amod v'Na'aseh Melachteinu" -- "Stand and we shall perform our work [by using you for the purpose for which you were originally made]," then it is Mekabel Tum'as Mes.
(b) The RIVA cited by TOSFOS (DH v'Ein) explains that it means that if an object which is broken can be used only for a purpose other than its original purpose, then it is not Tamei, because we tell the person who uses it, "Amod v'Na'aseh Melachteinu" -- "Stop! We want to [fix it in order to] use it for its original purpose." It is therefore still considered broken and is not Mekabel Tum'ah.
(According to Tosfos, the phrase that Rebbi Yochanan uses, "Amod v'Na'aseh Melachteinu," is consistent with the way it is always used; that is, if we tell a person to stop using a utensil -- "Amod..." -- the utensil is not Mekabel Tum'ah.)
2) "IMPORTANT" WOMEN WEARING JEWELRY ON SHABBOS
QUESTION: The Gemara tells us that Rebbi Meir, the Chachamim (who are the source for the ruling of the Mishnah), and Rebbi Eliezer argue whether a woman may go out into Reshus ha'Rabim on Shabbos while wearing an "Ir Shel Zahav." Rebbi Eliezer, who argues with the ruling of the Mishnah, permits her to go out with it because only a prominent woman wears such an ornament, and it is beneath her dignity to remove it to show to someone else. Therefore, there is no fear that she will carry it in Reshus ha'Rabim.
Later in the Gemara, Shmuel permits wearing a "Kelila" (a gold plate worn on the forehead), because only a prominent woman wears such an ornament, and there is no fear that she will remove it in Reshus ha'Rabim. Does Shmuel mean that the Halachah follows Rebbi Eliezer, and not the Tana of the Mishnah who prohibits a woman to go out while wearing an Ir Shel Zahav?
(a) The ME'IRI quotes the "Gedolei ha'Mefarshim" who says that Shmuel indeed sides with Rebbi Eliezer and not with the Mishnah.
(b) The RASHBA and RITVA say that Shmuel does not agree with Rebbi Eliezer. They explain that there are three types of ornaments. The Kelila which Shmuel permits is an elegant ornament of average quality worn by wealthy women. Since it is average, they will not feel compelled to remove it to show to their friends. However, an Ir Shel Zahav is an unusually elegant ornament and, therefore, even wealthy women will remove it to show to their friends (this is the point of dispute between the Mishnah and Rebbi Eliezer). The third type is an elegant item which even poor women wear; such an item is prohibited to be worn by anyone in Reshus ha'Rabim.
(c) The MIRKEVES HA'MISHNEH says that according to the RAMBAM (Hilchos Shabbos 19:6), Shmuel agrees that an Ir Shel Zahav is prohibited, but not for the same reason as the Gemara earlier suggests. Rather, according to Shmuel one is prohibited to wear the Ir Shel Zahav (and the other ornaments mentioned in the Mishnah) due to a concern that it will fall off and she will carry it in Reshus ha'Rabim. (This, in fact, is the way the Rambam (Hilchos Shabbos 19:6) records the laws of the Mishnah.) Perhaps a Kelila, in contrast, is worn tighter and therefore there is no concern that it will fall off. The only possible concern is that she might remove it in order to show it to her friends, but Shmuel says that we are not concerned that she will do that. Therefore, Shmuel may still agree with the Mishnah that prohibits a woman to go out with an Ir Shel Zahav.