Thursday, August 18, 2005

Rif Shabbat 39a {Shabbat 108b - 109a}


{Shabbat 108b continues}
that is permitted: one puts oil and salt [mixed into water] or oil and water [over salt], but provided that water and salt are not mixed at the outset.

And the halacha is not like Rabbi Yossi, but rather like the Tanna Kamma, for we state in Eruvin, in the first perek {Eruvin 14b}: Rav Yosef cited Rav Yehuda who cited Shmuel: the halacha is not like Rabbi Yossi, not in terms of salt water and not in terms of a lechi {a post at the entrance of an alleyway}.

Rav Yehuda bar Chaviva recited {tnei}: We may not prepare strong salt water.
What is strong salt water?
Rabba and Rav Yosef both say: Such that an egg floats in it.
And how much is that?
Abaye said: Two parts of salt and one part of water.
For what is it made?
Rabbi Abbahu said: For muries {a pickle containing fish hash and sometimes wine}.

And Rav Yehuda bar Chaviva recited {tnei}: One may not salt a radish or an egg on Shabbat.
{Rashi: a number of slices at the same time.}
Rav Chizkiya cited Abaye: Radish is forbidden, but an egg is permitted.
And so is the halacha {like Abaye}.

Rav Nachman said: Initially, I used to salt radish, arguing, I do indeed spoil it, for Shmuel said: Sharp radish is [more] beneficial. But when I heard what Ulla said when he came, viz., In the West [Palestine] they salt them slice by slice, I no longer salt them {more than a slice at a time}, but I certainly do drop them [in salt].

[To put] wine into one's eye is forbidden; [to put it] on the eye, is permitted. And [to put] tasteless saliva, even on the eye, is forbidden -- and so is the halacha.

Mar Ukva cited Shmuel: One may steep collyrium [an eye salve] on the eve of the Sabbath and place it upon his eyes on Shabbat without fear {of transgression}.

Bar Levai was standing before Mar 'Ukba, and saw him opening and shutting [his eyes] {for the salve to enter right in}. He said to him: To this extent the Sages did not permit and Mar Samuel did not permit.

They learnt {in a brayta}: Chanina {our gemara: Rabbi Muna} cited Rabbi Yehuda: A drop of cold water in the morning and bathing the hands and feet [in hot water] in the evening is better than all the eye-salves in the world. He used to say: If the hand [be put] to the eye, let it be cut off {since it is damaging}; the hand to the nose, let it be cut off: the hand to the mouth, let it be cut off; the hand to the ear, let it be cut off; the hand to the vein [opened for blood letting], let it be cut off; the hand to the membrum, let it be cut off; the hand to the anus, let it be cut off; the hand

{Shabbat 109a}
to the vat {of wine}, let it be cut off: [because] the [unwashed] hand leads to blindness, the hand leads to deafness, the hand causes a polypus {=a morbid growth in the nose}.

We learnt there {in the Mishna} in Niddah {13a}: EVERY HAND THAT MAKES FREQUENT EXAMINATION IS IN THE CASE OF WOMEN PRAISEWORTHY, BUT IN THE CASE OF MEN IT OUGHT TO BE CUT OFF. {And the gemara there:} Wherein [in this respect] do women differ from men? — Women [in this matter] are not sensitive {i.e., the examination does not unduly excite their passions}, hence they are praiseworthy, but in the case of men who are highly sensitive [their hands] ought to be cut off. But, if so, what was the point in saying 'MAKES FREQUENT' [seeing that the same reason applies] also where [the examinations are] infrequent? — When 'MAKES FREQUENT' was mentioned it was intended to refer to women only.

One taught {tana}: This applies only to the emission of semen but as regards flux {zav} a man also is as praiseworthy as the women; and even in regard to the emission of semen, if he desires to make the examination with a splinter or with a potsherd {thus not unduly exciting himself} he may do so.
And a thick cloth is like a potsherd.

They learnt {in a brayta}: Rabbi Eliezer said: Whoever holds his membrum when he makes water is as though he had brought a flood on the world. They said to Rabbi Eliezer: Would not the spray bespatter his feet and he would appear to be maimed in his privy parts so that he would be the cause of casting upon his children the reflection of being illegitimate? He said to them: It is preferable that a man should be the cause of casting upon his children the reflection of being illegitimate than that he should make himself a wicked man, even for a while, before the Omnipresent.

Another brayta: Rabbi Eliezer said to them: It is possible for a man to stand on a raised spot and to make water or to make water in loose earth and thus to avoid making himself wicked, even for a while, before the Omnipresent.

Which {response} did he tell them first? If it be suggested that it was the first mentioned statement that he gave them first [is it likely, it may be objected], that after he spoke to them of a prohibition he would merely offer a remedy {implying that if the remedy of standing on a raised spot were not possible it would be permitted}? The fact is that it was the last mentioned statement that he gave them first, and when they asked him, 'What is he to do when he can find no raised spot or loose earth', he answered them, 'It is preferable that a man should be the cause of casting upon his children the reflection of being illegitimate than that he should make himself a wicked man, even for a while, before the Omnipresent'.

But why all these precautions? — Because otherwise one might emit semen in vain, for Rabbi Yochanan said: Whosoever emits semen in vain deserves death, for it is said {Bereishit 38:10}:

ט וַיֵּדַע אוֹנָן, כִּי לֹּא לוֹ יִהְיֶה הַזָּרַע; וְהָיָה אִם-בָּא אֶל-אֵשֶׁת אָחִיו, וְשִׁחֵת אַרְצָה, לְבִלְתִּי נְתָן-זֶרַע, לְאָחִיו. 9 And Onan knew that the seed would not be his; and it came to pass when he went in unto his brother's wife, that he spilled it on the ground, lest he should give seed to his brother.
י וַיֵּרַע בְּעֵינֵי ה, אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה; וַיָּמֶת, גַּם-אֹתוֹ. 10 And the thing which he did was evil in the sight of the LORD; and He slew him also.

The academy of Rabbi Ami {our gemara: Rabbi Yitzchak and Rabbi Ammi} said: He is as though he shed blood, for it is said {Yeshaya 57:5}:

ה הַנֵּחָמִים, בָּאֵלִים, תַּחַת, כָּל-עֵץ רַעֲנָן; שֹׁחֲטֵי הַיְלָדִים בַּנְּחָלִים, תַּחַת סְעִפֵי הַסְּלָעִים. 5 Ye that inflame yourselves among the terebinths, under every leafy tree; that slay the children in the valleys, under the clefts of the rocks?

Read not shochatei {=that slay} but rather sochatei {that press out}.

Rav Ashi {our gemara: Rav Asi} said: He is like one who worships idols; for here {in Yeshaya 57:5} it is written תַּחַת, כָּל-עֵץ רַעֲנָן - "under every leafy tree" - and there it is written {Devarim 12}:

ב אַבֵּד תְּאַבְּדוּן אֶת-כָּל-הַמְּקֹמוֹת אֲשֶׁר עָבְדוּ-שָׁם הַגּוֹיִם, אֲשֶׁר אַתֶּם יֹרְשִׁים אֹתָם--אֶת-אֱלֹהֵיהֶם: עַל-הֶהָרִים הָרָמִים וְעַל-הַגְּבָעוֹת, וְתַחַת כָּל-עֵץ רַעֲנָן. 2 Ye shall surely destroy all the places, wherein the nations that ye are to dispossess served their gods, upon the high mountains, and upon the hills, and under every leafy tree.

Shmuel and Rav Yehuda once stood upon the roof of the Synagogue of Shaf VeYativ in Nehardea at night.
Rav Yehuda said to him: 'I must make water.'
He {Shmuel} said to him: Sharp one! take hold of your membrum and make the water outside [the roof] {to prevent the urine from falling on the roof}.

But how could he do this? We learnt {in a brayta}: Rabbi Eliezer said:

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