[8a - 53 lines; 8b - 56 lines]
1)[line 1]שלמודו קשה עליוSHE'LIMUDO KASHEH ALAV- who finds learning difficult [because (a) he cannot remember what he had previously learned; (b) he remembers what he previously learned incorrectly]
2)[line 1]משנתוMISHNASO- [those] Mishnayos [that] he [had previously learned]
3)[line 2]סדורהSEDURAH- [mentally] arranged
4)[line 3]ירבה בישיבהYARBEH B'YESHIVA- he should increase [the amount of time that he spends among the students learning] in Yeshiva [who constantly review their Mishnayos]
5)[line 7]ועיילV'AYIL- [and only then] went up [to learn]
6)[line 12]מסביר לו פניםMASBIR LO PANIM- look at him favorably
7)[line 14]רעיםRE'IM- friends [who can appease the Rebbi]
8)[line 16]"אם ישוך הנחש בלא לחש ואין יתרון לבעל הלשון""IM YISHOCH HA'NACHASH B'LO LACHASH, V'EIN YISRON L'VA'AL HA'LASHON."- If the snake bites when it was not charmed, there is no gain to the master of the tongue" (i.e., the snake, who is characterized as one who poisons through his tongue) (Koheles 10:11)
9)[line 18]משתכין כנחשתMISHTAKIN [ALAV] KA'NECHOSHES- (a) [turns a reddish color similar to that of] copper rust (O.F. rodil - rust) (RASHI); (b) [does not perform its function, similar to] rusty copper (TOSFOS)
10)[line 20]לוחשי לחישותLOCHASHEI LECHISHOS- lit. those who whisper; i.e., those who pray the silent Shemoneh Esreh
11)[line 21]"יגיד עליו רעו מקנה אף על עולה""YAGID ALAV RE'O; MIKNEH AF AL OLEH."- "The racket of a storm announces it; the cattle, too, of the rising tempest." (Iyov 36:33) - Given that this verse is discussing rain, our Gemara homiletically interprets this verse to mean, "His friend should pray for it [to arrive]...."
12)[line 24]נענהNA'ANEH- answered
13)[line 25]חסיד שבדורCHASID SHEB'DOR- the most righteous individual in that generation
14)[line 30]ומגיס דעתו עליוMEGIS DA'ATO ALAV- he becomes haughty as a result
15)[line 30]אףAF- wrath
16)[line 31]"...מקנה אף על עולה""... MIKNEH AF AL OLEH"- see above, entry #11. Given the context, our Gemara homiletically interprets this verse to mean, "... He turns his wrath upon he whose pride rose within him."
17)[line 32]נוחין זה לזהNOCHIN ZEH L'ZEH- attempt to understand each other's view
18)[line 33]מתקנאין באף ומעלין אותוMISKAN'IN B'AF U'MA'ALIN OSO- they arouse the jealousy and wrath of HaSh-m
19)[line 36]לעתיד לבאL'ASID LA'VO- in the future
20)[line 36]מתקבצותMISKABTZOS- will gather
21a)[line 37]דורסDORES- tramples [its prey]
b)[line 37]טורףTOREF- rips apart [its prey]
22)[line 37]מה הנאה יש לך?MAH HANA'AH YESH LECHA?- what benefit do you gain [from poisoning and killing people, whom you do not consume]?
23)[line 38]ואין יתרון לבעל הלשוןV'EIN YISRON L'VA'AL HA'LASHON- and there is no benefit to one who slanders others [and I am no worse than he].
24)[line 39]משים נפשו בכפוMESIM NAFSHO B'CHAPO- he raises his soul in his hands; that is, he prays with feeling, as opposed to by rote
25)[line 39]"נשא לבבנו אל כפים אל קל בשמים""NISA LEVAVEINU EL KAPAYIM, EL KEL BA'SHAMAYIM"- "Let us raise our hearts to our hands, to the G-d who is in the Heavens." (Eichah 3:41) - It is not enough to spread out one's hands and to gesticulate to HaSh-m. That is not Tefilah. It is lifting up one's heart that counts most, not lifting up one's hands.
26)[line 40]אוקים שמואל אמורא עליהOKIM SHMUEL AMORA ALEI- Shmuel appointed a Meturgeman over him [to (a) repeat his lesson in a louder voice (RASHI to Berachos 56a); (b) translate his lesson from Hebrew into the vernacular (RASHI to Yoma 20b)]
27)[line 40]"ויפתוהו בפיהם... והוא רחום יכפר עון""VA'YEFATUHU B'FIHEM... V'HU RACHUM YECHAPER AVON..."- "And they flattered Him with their mouths, and deceived Him with their tongues. And their heart was not aligned with Him, nor were they faithful to His covenant. Yet He is merciful; He will forgive sin and not destroy, and he will increasingly turn back his wrath and not arouse all of His anger." (Tehilim 78:36-38)
28)[line 43]בעלי אמנהBA'ALEI AMANAH- those who are trustworthy in business [as a result of their fear of HaSh-m]
29)[line 43]"אמת מארץ תצמח וצדק משמים נשקף""EMES ME'ERETZ TITZMACH, V'TZEDEK MI'SHAMAYIM NISHKAF."- "Truth shall sprout from the earth, and Tzedek shall gaze from heaven." (Tehilim 85:12) - Rebbi Ami understands that "Tzedek" is related to the word "Tzedakah" (charity), and that here it refers to rain.
30)[line 44]בחולדה ובורCHULDAH U'BOR- The Aruch relates that a young woman on the way to her father's house fell into a pit. A young man came along and pulled her out on the condition that she marry him. She acquiesced, and they vowed to be true to one another. The young lady then asked who would act as guarantors on the vow. At that very moment, a weasel passed by. The young man declared that the pit and weasel would act as trustees to their commitment. While she faithfully waited for his return, he ignored his obligation and settled down with another woman. That union resulted in two sons. One fell in a pit and died; the other was fatally bitten by a weasel. Sensing that not all was as it should be, his wife asked him to tell her what he knew of these unusual circumstances. Remembering his earlier promise, he related the story to his wife. She then insisted that he divorce her and make good on his oath.
31a)[line 46]המצדיק את עצמו מלמטהHA'MATZDIK ES ATZMO MIL'MATAH- one who is careful to act according to the Torah while alive [lit. from below]
b)[line 46]מצדיקין עליו הדין מלמעלהMATZDIKIN ALAV HA'DIN MIL'MA'ALAH- they deal with him in an especially exacting manner from above [so as to cleanse him of his accumulated sins before he reaches the next world]
32)[line 47]"אמת מארץ תצמח וצדק משמים נשקף""EMES ME'ERETZ TITZMACH, V'TZEDEK MI'SHAMAYIM NISHKAF."- "Truth shall sprout from the earth, and Tzedek shall gaze from heaven." (Tehilim 85:12) - Rebbi Yochanan understands that "Tzedek" means "judgment."
33)[line 48]"[מי יודע עז אפך] וכיראתך עברתך""[MI YODE'A OZ APECHA;] UCH'YIR'ASCHA EVRASECHA."- "[Who knows the power of Your wrath?] As [one must] fear You, so [must he fear] Your fury." (Tehilim 90:11) - Rebbi Chiya bar Avin reads this verse as, "... Your anger falls upon those who fear You."
34)[line 48]"פגעת את שש""PAGA'TA ES SAS..."- "You struck he who rejoiced in acting righteously, he who mentioned your kindnesses [even then, saying], 'You have become angry due to my sins' - through them the world is saved!" (Yeshayah 64:4).
35)[line 50]ביסוריןYISURIN- troubles, esp. physical pain
36)[line 52]שמחבלתMECHABELES- experiences labor pains
37)[last line]נאמרה עצירה בגשמיםNE'EMRAH ATZIRAH BI'GESHAMIM...- Reish Lakish compares rainfall to a woman in childbirth to teach that one must pray intently when one wishes that it occur in an optimal fashion.
38)[line 1]"כי עצר עצר ה' בעד כל רחם [לבית אבימלך על דבר שרה אשת אברהם]""KI ATZOR ATZAR HASH-M B'AD KOL RECHEM [L'VEIS AVIMELECH, AL DEVAR SARAH ESHES AVRAHAM.]"- "For HaSh-m stopped up every womb [in the house of Avimelech, on account of Sarah, wife of Avraham.]" (Bereishis 20:18) - This verse describes the punishment of Avimelech, king of the Pelishtim, when he took Sarah Imenu as a wife. Due to the lack of fear of G-d in the land of the Pelishtim and their concern for what the people would do to Avraham if they knew that he and Sarah were married, Avraham and Sarah claimed to be brother and sister.
39)[line 5]"ותהר ותלד בן ותאמר אסף אלקים את חרפתי""VA'TAHAR VA'TELED BEIN VA'TOMER 'ASAF ELOKIM ES CHERPASI'" - "And she [Rachel] became pregnant and she bore a son [Yosef], and she said, 'Now HaSh-m has gathered in my shame [at not having children.]" (Bereishis 30:23) (THE BIRTH OF YOSEF)
This was Rachel's first child (after thirteen years of marriage). The Matriarchs knew, however, that Yakov was destined to have twelve sons, and that since this was his eleventh, he would father only one more son. That is why she went on to explain that she called this son Yosef, as a prayer that HaSh-m should grant her "another" one.
40)[line 6]"כי כאשר ירד הגשם והשלג מן השמים ושמה לא ישוב כי אם הרוה את הארץ והולידה והצמיחה ונתן זרע לזרע ולחם לאכל""KI KA'ASHER YERED HA'GESHEM VEHA'SHELEG MIN HA'SHAMAYIM V'SHAMAH LO YASHUV KI IM HIRVAH ES HA'ARETZ V'HOLIDAH V'HITZMICHAH, V'NASAN ZERA LA'ZORE'A V'LECHEM LA'OCHEL." - "Because just as rain and snow that descend from the sky do not return there, but rather they water the earth, causing it to give birth and to make things grow, giving seeds to the one who wishes to sow and bread to the one who wishes to eat." (Yeshayah 55:10). (THE WORD OF HASH-M BEARS FRUIT)
(a)The verse continues: "So it is with the words that go from the mouth of HaSh-m (via the prophets); they too, will not return to HaSh-m empty-handed, not before they have done what HaSh-m wants them to do, not before they succeed in their mission."
(b)In other words, if the people will only listen to the prophets and return to Him, then all of their positive prophesies are bound to come true.
41)[line 7]פקידהPEKIDAH- recalling
42)[line 8]"וה' פקד את שרה כאשר אמר ויעש ה' לשרה כאשר דבר. ותהר ותלד שרה לאברהם בן לזקניו למועד אשר דבר אתו אלקים""VA'HASH-M PAKAD ES SARAH KA'ASHER AMAR VA'YA'AS HASH-M L'SARAH KA'ASHER DIBER. VA'TAHAR VA'TALED SARAH L'AVRAHAM BEN LI'ZEKUNAV LA'MO'ED ASHER DIBER ITO ELOKIM."- "And HaSh-m 'visited' Sarah as He said, and He did to Sarah as He spoke. And Sarah became pregnant and she bore Avraham a son in his old age, at the predetermined time that He told him he would." (Bereishis 21:1-2)
43)[line 9]"פקדת הארץ ותשקקה...""PAKADTA HA'ARETZ VA'TESHOKEKEHA..."- "You recalled the earth and watered it; You greatly enriched it from the channel of HaSh-m, which is full of water; [You prepared their grain, for thusly do You prepare it]" (Tehilim 65:10)
44)[line 12]קובה יש ברקיעKUBAH YESH BA'RAKI'A- there is a [water-filled] compartment in heaven
45)[line 14]"אם לשבט אם לארצו...""IM L'SHEVET IM L'ARTZO..."- "He procures [the rain], whether as punishment, for His land, or as a kindness." (Iyov 37:13)
46)[line 15]בהרים ובגבעותBE'HARIM UVA'GEVA'OS- [when Klal Yisrael do Teshuvah, the fierce rain will fall] upon the mountains and hills [where it can do no harm]
47)[line 17]לזרעיםZERA'IM- [grain] seeds
48a)[line 18]בורותBOROS- round wells
b)[line 18]שיחיןSHICHIN- elongated ditches [that store water]
c)[line 18]ומערותME'AROS- caves [that store water]
49a)[line 19]כפנאKAFNA- a famine
b)[line 19]ומותנאMOSANA- lit. death; a plague
50)[line 20]ניבעי רחמי אתרתיNIV'EI RACHAMEI A'TARTEI- to pray that both [should be repealed]
51)[line 21]ניסבולNISBOL- we will bear
52a)[line 23]דכי יהיב רחמנא שובעאKI YAHIV RACHMANA SOV'A- when HaSh-m grants plenty
b)[line 23]לחיי הוא דיהיבL'CHYEI HU D'YAHIV- he grants it to those who are living
53)[line 24]"פותח את ידך ומשביע לכל חי רצון""POSE'ACH ES YADECHA, U'MASBI'A L'CHOL CHAI RATZON"- "You open your hand, [and satisfy the need of every living being.]" (Tehilim 145:16)
54)[line 25]מצלינןMATZLINAN- we pray
55)[line 26]"ונצומה ונבקשה מאלקינו על זאת ויעתר לנו""VA'NATZUMAH VA'NEVAKSHAH ME'ELOKEINU AL ZOS, VA'YE'ASER LANU" - "And we fasted and beseeched HaSh-m regarding this and He responded to us." (Ezra 8:23) (THE RETURN FROM THE BABYLONIAN EXILE)
(a)Ezra ha'Sofer led those who were returning from the Babylonian exile to rebuild the Beis ha'Mikdash. They carried with them large amounts of silver, gold, and other valuable materials with which to accomplish their goal.
(b)Because Ezra had informed the king of Persia that HaSh-m protects those who seek Him and punishes those who forsake Him, he did not wish to ask for royal Persian protection on the way.
56)[line 27]במערבאMA'ARAVA- (lit. the west) Eretz Yisrael (which is to the west of Bavel)
57)[line 28]"ורחמין למבעא מן קדם אלה שמיא על רזה דנה [די לא יהבדון דניאל וחברוהי עם שאר חכימי בבל]""V'RACHAMIN L'MIV'EI MIN KADAM ELAH SHEMAYA AL RAZAH DENAH [DI LA YEHAVDUN DANIEL V'CHAVROHI IM SHE'AR CHAKIMEI SHEMAYA]" - " And that they should seek mercy from the G-d of heaven concerning this mystery; [that Daniel and his fellows should not perish with the rest of the wise men of Babylon]." (Daniel 2:18) (NEVUCHADNETZAR'S DREAM)
(a)Nevuchadnetzar had a dream whose interpretation eluded the wisest men of the Persian empire. For their failure to interpret it, they were executed. The king then sent for Daniel and his friends Chananyah, Misha'el, and Azaryah.
(b)Daniel asked the king for more time to work out the meaning of the dream. He wanted more time for them to plead for Divine assistance.
(c)That night, their prayers were answered. Daniel had a vision in which he was informed both of the contents of the dream and its interpretation. The following morning, he was once again ushered in to the king's presence, where, like Yosef before Pharaoh, he made it clear that he was merely repeating what HaSh-m had revealed to him. Then he proceeded to describe the strange creature that the king had seen in his dream, depicting the four kingdoms that would dominate the world until the time of Mashi'ach (Bavel, Madai, Yavan and Edom).
(d)See Background to Sanhedrin 93:40.
58a)[line 30]גזור גזרהGAZUR GEZEIRAH- [the Romans] enacted a decree
b)[line 30]וגזור דלא למיתב בתעניתאV'GAZUR D'LO L'MEISAV B'SA'ANISA- (a) the content of which was that [the Jews] were not allowed to fast [so that they would be unable to arouse Divine mercy] (RASHI); (b) along with a decree stating that the Jews were not allowed to fast [so that they could not arouse Divine mercy to nullify the original decree against the practice of Judaism] (RABEINU GERSHOM)
59)[line 31]נקבליה עילווןNEKABLEI ILAVAN- let us [now] accept upon ourselves [to fast]
60)[line 32]ליתביהLEISVEI- we will sit [and observe the fast]
61)[line 32]מנא לך האMENA LACH HA?- how do you know [that the mere acceptance of the fast can accomplish as much as the fast itself]?
62)[line 32]"ויאמר אלי אל תירא דניאל כי מן היום הראשון אשר נתת את לבך להבין ולהתענות לפני אלקיך נשמעו דבריך ואני באתי בדבריך""VA'YOMER ELAI AL TIRA DANIEL KI MIN HA'YOM HA'RISON ASHER NASATA ES LIBCHA L'HAVIN UL'HISANOS LIFNEI ELOKECHA NISHMA'U DEVARECHA VA'ANI BASI BI'DVARECHA" - "And he (the Mal'ach) said to me, 'Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you intended to understand and to fast before your G-d, your words have been heard, [and I have now come as a result of your words]." (Daniel 10:12) (A MAL'ACH APPEARS TO DANIEL)
(a)Koresh, king of Persia, allowed the rebuilding of the Beis ha'Mikdash to begin. In the third year of his reign, Daniel foresaw that he was to rescind his permission. As a result, Daniel mourned and fasted for three weeks.
(b)Daniel was standing beside the Chidekel (Tigris) River along with his friends Chananyah, Misha'el, and Azaryah. Daniel saw a Mal'ach appear. Chananyah, Misha'el, and Azaryah were unable to see the Mal'ach, but they sensed its frightening presence and fled.
(c)The Mal'ach proceeded to reveal to Daniel some of what would occur to Klal Yisrael in future generations.
(d)See Background to Sanhedrin 93:131.
63)[line 37]כשני אליהוSHNEI ELIYAHU - the years of Eliyahu (ELIYAHU BRINGS ABOUT A WELL-DESERVED DROUGHT)
(a)One of the first actions taken by Yehoshua when he arrived in Eretz Yisrael was to capture and destroy the city of Yericho. He subsequently prohibited the rebuilding of the city, cursing anyone who would do so with the death of his oldest son when he would place the cornerstone of the city and the death of his youngest when they would install the door of the city. Chi'el of Beis El had rebuilt Yericho, and the curse was fulfilled.
(b)Eliyahu ha'Navi (heretofore unmentioned in Tanach) and the idolatrous King Ach'av met in the house of Chi'el, where they had come to comfort him on the loss of his youngest son. Ach'av expressed surprise that the curse of the Yehoshua had been fulfilled when the curse of HaSh-m Himself - who had promised in the second paragraph of Shema that rain would be withheld when Klal Yisrael worshipped idols - had not.
(c)Upholding the honor of HaSh-m, Eliyahu swore to Ach'av that there would no rainfall until he, Eliyahu, personally allowed it. Three years of severe drought followed.
64)[line 38]סימן קללהSIMAN KELALAH- (lit. a sign of a curse) a negative sign (for it is necessary to prepare for Shabbos then, and it is difficult to do so in the rain and mud)
65)[line 39]קשה יומא דמיטרא כיומא דדינאKASHAH YOMA D'MITRA K'YOMA D'DINA- a day upon which it rains [makes it] as difficult [to accomplish errands] as one upon which the court is in session [and the marketplace is flooded; this occurred every Monday and Thursday]
66)[line 40]דצריך לברייתאD'TZARICH L'VERYASA- that it is necessary to sustain life
67)[line 41]בעינן רחמיBA'INAN RACHAMEI- I would have prayed
68)[line 41]צדקה לענייםTZEDAKAH LA'ANIYIM- provides charitable [relief] for poor individuals [who are suffering from the rich Shabbos food to which they are unused]
69)[line 42]"וזרחה לכם יראי שמי שמש צדקה ומרפא""V'ZARCHAH LACHEM YIR'EI SHEMI SHEMESH TZEDAKAH U'MARPEI"- "And a charitable sun will shine for you, those who fear Me, with healing in its wings...." (Mal'achi 3:20) - The Navi informs us that in the future, an ultra-hot sun will simultaneously provide pleasure to the righteous while punishing the wicked.
70)[line 43]פרוטה שבכיסPERUTAH SHEB'KIS- a coin in one's wallet
71)[line 45]הסמוי מן העיןHA'SAMUY MIN HE'AYIN- that is hidden from view
72)[line 46]באסמיךBA'ASAMECHA- in your storehouses. In our Sugya, this word is interpreted to mean "in that which is hidden."
73)[line 47]שאין העין שולטת בוSHE'EIN HA'AYIN SHOLETES BO- that the eye does not rule over; i.e., that is hidden from view
74)[line 47]למוד את גרנוLA'MUD ES GORNO- to measure [the grain stores within] his silo
75)[line 49]בכריKRI- a pile of grain
76)[line 50]שואSHAV- worthless
77a)[line 50]השקולSHAKUL- weighed
b)[line 51]המדודMADUD- measured
c)[line 51]המנויMANUY- counted
78)[line 53]קבוץ גליותKIBUTZ GALUYOS- the ingathering of exiles
79)[line 53]"שובה ה' את שביתנו כאפיקים בנגב""SHUVAH HASH-M ES SHEVISEINU KA'AFIKIM BA'NEGEV"- "HaSh-m shall return our captives like streams in the desert." (Tehilim 126:4)
80)[line 54]אפיקי יםAFIKEI YAM- waves of the sea. This proves that "Afikim" are composed of water, in which case this term can apply to rain.
81)[line 54]גייסותGAYASOS- marauding troops
82)[line 55]"תלמיה רוה נחת גדודיה...""TELAMEHA RAVEH, NACHES GEDUDEHA..."- "You saturate its furrows, comforting its inhabitants; You soften it with fine rain, thereby blessing its growth." (Tehilim 65:11)
83)[line 55]פוסקי צדקה ברבים ואין נותניןPOSKEI TZEDAKAH B'RABIM V'EIN NOSNIN- those who pledge charity publicly [so that others will honor them] and do not make good on their pledges. This applies equally to those who pledge privately and do not pay, although it rarely happens that one does not pay in such cases.
84)[last line]"נשיאים ורוח וגשם אין...""NESI'IM V'RU'ACH V'GESHEM AYIN..."- "One who boasts of a gift that he has not given is like clouds and wind that do not deliver rain." (Mishlei 25:14)