ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler of Kollel Iyun Hadaf
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld
MEGILAH 6 - Dedicated in memory of Irene Edelstein, by Josh R. Danziger of Cliffside Park, New Jersey.
(a) Rebbi Yochanan claimed that when he was young, he made a collection of statements which the sages of the time condoned. In his opinion, they called ...
1. ... Teverya, 'Chamas' - because of Chamei (the hot-springs of) Teverya.
2. ... Tzipori, 'Rakas' - because it was high-up on a mountain like 'Raksa d'Nahara' (a river-bank).
3. ... Ginosar, 'Kineres' - because its fruit was as sweet as a Kinor (the tone of a harp).
(b) Rava refuted Rebbi Yochanan's theory outright - because there is nobody who holds that Rakas is not Teverya.
(c) When a Talmid-Chacham would die in Bavel, they would eulogize him in Teverya (which was then both a main center of Torah-learning and a major burial-site) with the words 'He was great in Sheshach and he had a good name in Rakas'. And when the coffin would arrive in Teverya, they would speak of 'Ohavei Seridim' (those who love Jews [or Talmidei-Chachamim]) going to greet the 'Harugei Omek'. The better-known name of ...
1. ... 'Sheshach' - was Bavel (in the Gematriya of 'Atbash', 'Sheshach' is the equivalent of 'Bavel'). of
2. ... 'Rakas' - was Teverya.
3. ... 'Omek' - was Bavel, too.
(d) When Rebbi Zeira died, they said in his Hesped (eulogy) 'Eretz Shinar Harah, Eretz Tzvi Gidlah Shashu'eha' - which teaches us that although Rebbi Zeira was born in Bavel, he moved to Eretz Yisrael and developed there.
(a) So Rava rearranges the list. Chamas refers to the hot-springs of G'rar. They called Teverya, 'Rakas' - because even the 'Reikanin' she'Bah' (those of its inhabitants who were the most empty of Mitzvos) were full of Mitzvos like pomegranates.
(b) According to Rebbi Yirmeyahu, its real name was Rakas, and one of the possible reasons for the name 'Teverya' is because it is situated in the middle of the land (from the word 'Tabur' - navel); the other is - because 'Tovah Re'iyasah' (it was pleasant to look at, because of its many gardens and orchards).
(c) Rebbi Ze'ira explains that they called Kitron 'Tzipori' - because it was situated on top of a mountain (like a bird).
(d) Based on the fact that Kitron belonged to Zevulun and that Zevulun complained to Hash-m about their territory, we query whether it really was Tzipori (as will explained shortly). Zevulun's complained - that whereas their brother Naftali received fields and vineyards, they received only hills and mountains.
(a) Based on the Pasuk in v'Zos ha'Berachah "Amim Har Yikra'u", Hash-m replied to Zevulun - that all the tribes would need them, because the precious Chilazon fish (which provided the Techeles for Tzitzis) was to be found.
(b) The Beraisa cited by Rav Yosef learns the Chilazon from the Pasuk there "u'Sefunei", from ...
1. ... "Temunei", he learns - the special blessing of tunny (fish), and from ...
2. ... "Chol" - that of white glass.
(c) When ...
1. ... Zevulun asked Hash-m 'Mi Modi'eini al Zos' - they meant 'Who will inform them if strangers fish in their waters and walk off with the Chilazon without paying their fishing dues?'
2. ... Hash-m replied "Sham Yizbechu Zivchei Tzedek" - He meant that, just as He rejects theft in the realm of Korbanos, so too, will He reject theft with regard to this issue, and that consequently, anyone who steals the Chilazon fish without paying their dues, will not manufacture it successfully.
(d) The entire area of 'Eretz Zavas Chalav u'Devash' of the whole of Eretz Yisrael was twenty-two Parsah by six Parsah. Of that - sixteen by sixteen Mil was situated in Tzipori (an area of 256 sq. Mil - more than one eighth of the total of 2112 sq. Mil. [twenty-two by six Parsah] of the whole of Eretz Yisrael). In that case, if Kitron was really Tzipori, why did Zevulun complain (seeing as they received way above the average)?!
(e) We prove from the Pasuk "v'Naftali al Meromei Sadeh" - that (in spite of the 'Zavas Chalav u'Devash'), Zevulun wanted fields(and not mountains).
(a) The Navi Tzefanyah writes "v'Ekron Tei'aker". Another name for Ekron - is Caesaria (Note, that there was more than one Caesaria).
(b) Ekron and Achidas Migdal Shir (or Tzor) - are one and the same. Originally, it was called Ekron, and it caused Yisrael much trouble in the time of the Chashmona'im. When the latter overcame them, they changed its name to Achidas Migdal Shir (or Tzor).
(c) Tzor was the capital of Edom. According to the Navi Zecharyah ...
1. ... the various locations of idol-worship there - will be destroyed.
2. ... its Shuls and Batei Medrash - will be dedicated to the service of Hash-m.
3. ... 'theatres' and 'circuses' (meeting-places) - will one day be taken over by the leaders of Yisrael, who will teach Torah in them.
(d) Another name for Leshem (of Dan) - is Pamayas (alias Banias).
(a) Caesaria was a metropolis of kings. Some say they reared kings there. According to others - they picked the kings from its inhabitants.
(b) We learn from the Pasuk in Yeshayah "Imal'ah ha'Charavah" - that Caesaria and Yerushalayim can never enjoy the same status simultaneously. When one of them is up, the other is down (in fact, one rises at the expense of the other).
(c) Rav Nachman bar Yitzchak learns it - from the Pasuk in Toldos "u'Le'om mi'Le'om Ye'ematz".
(d) Yitzchak asked Hash-m to favor Esav, since even a Rasha, must have some good in him. He eventually admitted however, that Esav was not worthy of seeing G-d's greatness - when Hash-m informed him that he would destroy Eretz Yisrael.
(a) Yakov seemed to know Esav's true character better than his father. When he implored Hash-m "Al Titen Hash-m Ma'avayei Rasha, Zemamo Al Tafek ... !" ...
1. ... he meant - that Hash-m should not remove the metal nose-ring (that keeps a wild camel under control).
2. ... he was referring - to Germamya of Edom (Germany [Ya'avetz]).
(b) There were three hundred and sixty five crown-makers in Germamya of Edom - and the same number of dukes in Edom.
(c) The relationship between them - was not very friendly, because each day they would fight with each other, and the former would kill one of the latter and try to appoint a king (it is unclear as to which one of them this applies).
(a) Rebbi Yitzchak says that if someone says ...
1. ... 'I toiled but did not succeed' - do not believe him.
2. ... 'I did not toil but succeeded' - do not believe him either.
(b) He is believed - if he says that he toiled and succeeded.
(c) The above does not apply to success or failure in business - because that depends entirely on the Divine assistance that one receives (and not on the amount of personal effort.
(d) Neither does it apply to learning Torah - when it is a matter of remembering what one has learned (as opposed to understanding it) which likewise depends on the Divine assistance that one merits.
(a) Rebbi Yitzchak learns from the Pasuk ...
1. ... "Al Tischar ba'Mere'im" - that one is ill-advised to start up with a Rasha who is currently successful.
2. ... "Yachilu Derachav b'Chol Eis" - that moreover, he will continue to succeed.
3. ... "Marom Mishpatecha Minegdo" - that he will also win his case against you in the Heavenly court.
4. ... "Kol Tzorerav Yafi'ach Bahem" - that he will defeat his enemies with ease.
(b) Rebbi Yochanan quoting Rebbi Shimon bar Yochai, learns from the Pasuk "Ozvei Torah Yehalelu Rasha, v'Shomrei Torah Yisgaru Bam" - that a Tzadik should start up with the Rasha (which seems to contradict Rav Yitzchak's statement).
(c) Rebbi Dusta'i bar Masun in a Beraisa (who appears to have an independent opinion in the matter) explains the Pasuk "Al Tischar ba'Mere'im" to mean - that one should not compete with a Rasha or be jealous of him (in this way, it will not clash with the Pasuk "Ozvei Torah ... ").
(d) Initially, we answer the Kashya on Rebbi Yitzchak by differentiating between personal issues (where one is well-advised not to start with a Rasha) and spiritual ones (rebuking him), which a Tzadik may do with impunity.
(e) Alternatively, we answer it by differentiating between ...
1. ... a complete Tzadik, who may start with a successful Rasha, and an incomplete Tzadik, who should not.
2. ... a Rasha who is enjoying current success, with whom one should not start, and one who is not, with whom even an incomplete Tzadik may start.
(a) Ula equates Italy of the Greek Empire with the large city of Rome. It ...
1. ... was - three hundred by three hundred Parsah, and it ...
2. ... contained three hundred and sixty five market-places, and ...
3. ... its bird-market (the smallest of all the markets) measured - sixteen Mil by sixteen Mil.
(b) The Emperor would dine in one of the market-places every day. In order to receive a prize from the Emperor - one either had to have been born there or to live there.
(c) The purpose of the five hundred windows in the three thousand bath-houses - was to let out the smoke.
(d) The sea blocked one side of Rome, mountains and hills, another. The ...
1. ... third side was blocked - by an iron wall, and the ...
2. ... fourth - by small stones.
(a) According to the Tana of our Mishnah, the only two things that one will not be Yotzei if one already performed them in Adar Rishon and the Chachamim then declare a leap-year - are reading the Megilah and Matanos la'Evyonim.
(b) We infer from our Mishnah that Adar Rishon and Adar Sheni have the same status - as regards Leining the four Parshiyos.
(c) The Tana Kama of the Beraisa says that all Mitzvos that apply in Adar Sheni, apply in Adar Rishon, except for that of reading the Megilah. He argues with Raban Shimon ben Gamliel (who says in the name of Rebbi Yosi, that someone who read the Megilah in Adar Rishon must read it again in Adar Sheni) - with regard to the four Parshiyos, which, in his opinion, need not be re-read in Adar Sheni if it was read in Adar Rishon, but which must, according to Raban Shimon ben Gamliel.
(a) It is obvious that the author of our Mishnah cannot be Rebbi Eliezer b'Rebbi Yosi (in the previous Beraisa), who says that one does not need to read the Megilah again in Adar Sheni. Neither does it appear to be ...
1. ... the Tana Kama of the Beraisa - who requires the Megilah that was read in Adar Rishon to be re-read in Adar Sheni, but not it seems, the Mitzvah of Matanos la'Evyonim (which can apparently be performed in either Adar).
2. ... Raban Shimon ben Gamliel - who includes the four Parshiyos in the things that can only be performed in Adar Sheni.
(b) We reconcile our Mishnah with the Tana Kama - by pointing out that Matanos la'Evyonim and reading the Megilah always have the same Din (as we already learned). Consequently, having informed us that the Megilah must be read in Adar Sheni, it is not necessary to mention Matanos la'Evyonim.
(c) We reconcile it with Raban Shimon ben Gamliel too, by amending the wording in our Mishnah to read 'Ein Bein Arba'ah-Asar she'b'Adar Rishon l'Arba'ah-Asar she'b'Adar Sheni Ela Mikra Megilah u'Matanos' (in which case, we are not concerned with the four Parshiyos at all) - to preclude the prohibition of Hesped and Ta'anis, which apply in Adar Rishon as well as in Adar Sheni.
(d) Rebbi Chiya bar Avin Amar Rebbi Yochanan rules - like Raban Shimon ben Gamliel.
(a) Both Rebbi Eliezer b'Rebbi Yosi (who holds that the Megilah is read in Adar Rishon) and Raban Shimon ben Gamliel (who says that it is read in Adar Sheni) learn their respective opinions from the Pasuk in Esther "b'Chol Shanah v'Shanah", which, according to ...
1. ... Rebbi Eliezer b'Rebbi Yosi, means - like every year, the Adar which follows Shevat.
2. ... Raban Shimon ben Gamliel, means - like every year, the Adar which is closest to Nisan.
(b) Rebbi Eliezer b'Rebbi Yosi declines to learn like Raban Shimon ben Gamliel, because his reason is based on the principle - 'Ein Ma'avirin al ha'Mitzvos' (One never postpones a Mitzvah that falls due).
(c) According to Rav Tavi, Raban Shimon ben Gamliel holds that the Sevara of 'Mismach Ge'ulah li'Ge'ulah' takes precedence over the principle of 'Ein Ma'avirin al ha'Mitzvos'. This means - that it is more logical to place one Ge'ulah (that of Purim) next to another (that of the Exodus from Egypt).
(d) Rebbi Elazar gives the source for Raban Shimon ben Gamliel as the Pasuk in Esther - "l'Kayem es Igeres ha'Purim ha'Zos ha'Shenis" (meaning in the second Adar).
(a) Having written "ha'Shenis" (according to Rebbi Elazar), the Pasuk nevertheless needed to add "b'Chol Shanah v'Shanah" - because we would otherwise have explained "ha'Shenis" to mean that in a leap year, one reads the Megilah twice.
(b) Rebbi Eliezer b'Rebbi Yosi (in whose opinion one reads the Megilah in Adar Rishon) explains the Pasuk "ha'Shenis" like Rav Shmuel bar Yehudah, who says - that first they fixed Purim in Shushan, and then in the rest of the world.