Thursday, March 24, 2005

Rif Brachot 16b



{corresponding to Brachot 25a, a citation of a brayta}

human fecal matter, nor opposite canine fecal matter, nor opposite pig fecal matter, nor opposite chicken fecal matter {all of the above, even if the smell is not bad}, nor opposite a dungheap whose smell is bad. And if it is in a place that is 10 handbreadths high, or deep 10, he may sit on its side and read. And if not, he should distance himself as far as his eyes {can see} and so too for prayer. And a bad smell that has a source, he should distance himself 4 cubits from the place the smell stops, and read kriyat Shema.

Rava said: the halacha is not like this brayta {as regards pig and dog fecal matter} but rather as was taught {in this brayta}:
One should not read kriyat Shema, not opposite fecal matter of dogs, nor opposite fecal matter of pigs the whole time they have skins {for tanning} in them.
{And the girsa is different from our gemara which lists human fecal matter, which logically would have to be separated by a pause from the other two, and also differs in the order of pigs and dogs.}

They asked of Rav Sheshet, a bad smell that has no {tangible} source, what {is the law}?
He said to them: Come and see these mats in the schoolhouse. Some sleep on them {and pass gas}, and others learn on them.
And we learn {are gores} as follows: He only said they were permitted as regards words of Torah, but reading Shema, no. And in words of Torah, also, he only said in regards to the smell of his friend, but as regards his own smell, no.

It was said {by Amoraim}:
Excrement which is being carried past
Abaye said: it is permitted to read Shema.
And Rava said: it is forbidden to read Shema.

And the halacha is like Rava.

Rava {our Gemara: Rav Pape} said: The mouth of a pig is like excrement which is being carried past.

Rav Yehuda said: A doubt of excrement in the house, it is permitted. A doubt of excrement in the dungheap, it is forbidden. A doubt of urine, even in the dungheap it is also permitted.

He holds like Rav Hamnuna, who said: urine, the Torah {thus, Biblically} only forbade opposite the (*first) {most likely erroneous copy from earlier} stream.; one it falls to the ground, it is permitted. And the Sages were the ones who decreed on it {urine on the ground}, and when the Sages decreed on it, they only decreed in the case when it is surely there, but in case of doubt they did not decree.

And how much, when it is certainly there?
Rav Yehuda cited Shmuel: The entire time that it moistens {the ground}.
Geneiva cited Rav: The entire time that its mark is discernible.

Rava said: the halacha is: even if it {the excrement, even as dry} as a potsherd it is forbidden {to read}, and urine, the entire time that it moistens {the ground} is forbidden.
What is the definition of excrement like a potsherd?
Rabba bar bar Chana cited Rabbi Yochanan: The entire time you can throw it and it does not break.
And some say {that he said}: the entire time you can roll it and it does not break.

{Brachot 25b}
{The Mishna had said:} "And if not, he should cover himself with water and read"
The establish this statement as regards to muddy water, but with clear water, no, for his heart sees his erva {sexual organ}.

And the halacha is: if his ankle sees his erva it is permitted {to read}, it it touches it, it is forbidden.

Rava said: excrement through a glass

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