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INSIGHTS INTO THE DAILY DAF

Kollel Iyun Hadaf

prepared by Kollel Iyun Hadaf of Yerushalayim

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Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld

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SUKAH 44 (17 Adar II) - Dedicated by Elliot and Lori Linzer in honor of Mairav Linzer's birthday.

1) "LO TISGODEDU" -- DIFFERENT CUSTOMS IN DIFFERENT PLACES

QUESTION: The Gemara continues its lengthy discussion about the obligation to fulfill the Mitzvah of Lulav on a day of Sukos that occurs on Shabbos. The Mishnah (42b) says that when the first day of Yom Tov occurs on Shabbos, the Mitzvah of Lulav applies, but when any other day of Sukos occurs on Shabbos, the Mitzvah does not apply (even in the Beis ha'Mikdash).

The Gemara (43a) explains that the Rabanan enacted a Gezeirah not to hold the Lulav on Shabbos, lest one carry it four Amos through Reshus ha'Rabim in order to bring it to an expert to learn how to perform the Mitzvah. This Gezeirah does not apply on the first day of Sukos (even though the Rabanan have the authority to enact that a Mitzvas Aseh not be performed). That day is accorded special status, because on that day the Mitzvah is mid'Oraisa even in the "Gevulin." During the rest of the festival, the Mitzvah is only mid'Rabanan in the "Gevulin," and therefore the Rabanan applied the Gezeirah during those days of Sukos even in the Beis ha'Mikdash.

This difference between the first day of Sukos and the other days applies only in Eretz Yisrael. Outside of Eretz Yisrael, where the people are not expert in determining the new month, the Mitzvah of Lulav is not performed on Shabbos even on the first day of Yom Tov (because of the doubt whether that day is Yom Tov).

However, the Gemara here (44a) concludes that nowadays even in Eretz Yisrael the Lulav is not held on the first day of Sukos when it occurs on Shabbos. Since the people outside of Eretz Yisrael do not hold the Lulav on that day, the people in Eretz Yisrael also do not hold the Lulav on that day. RASHI explains that this practice was enacted because of "Lo Tisgodedu," the Torah's requirement that different groups of Jews not have different practices.

The application of the principle of "Lo Tisgodedu" in this context is difficult to understand. In Yevamos (14a), Rava and Abaye disagree about the extent of the application of "Lo Tisgodedu." Rava maintains that it applies only to a single Beis Din in a single city; that is, two judges in one Beis Din may not follow two different practices because of "Lo Tisgodedu." Abaye maintains that even two Batei Din in one community may not have two different practices. In two different communities, though, they may have two different practices.

According to both Rava and Abaye, why does "Lo Tisgodedu" apply in the case of the Gemara here? The Gemara's case involves two completely different places -- Eretz Yisrael and outside of Eretz Yisrael, and thus "Lo Tisgodedu" should not apply even according to Abaye.

ANSWERS:

(a) The MAHARASHDAM (YD 153) and the NETZIV explain that even though the actual prohibition of "Lo Tisgodedu" does not apply in such circumstances, nevertheless it would be improper for the Rabanan to make an enactment l'Chatchilah that gives different practices to different groups of Jews. Accordingly, when the Rabanan enacted that the Lulav not be held on Shabbos, they included Jews in all places in that enactment. Other practices of Jews of one place which Jews of another place do not share are not practices that were enacted by the Rabanan. Rather, they are Minhagim, customs, that developed in one place and did not develop in the same way in another place. The prohibition of "Lo Tisgodedu" does not apply to such customs.

(b) The KAPOS TEMARIM explains that the people outside of Eretz Yisrael used to come to Yerushalayim during the festivals to fulfill the Mitzvah of "Aliyah l'Regel." While they were in Yerushalayim, they were bound to observe their normal practices and not hold the Lulav on Shabbos. Their practice, however, contradicted the practice of the native residents of Yerushalayim, who held the Lulav on Shabbos. The Rabanan instituted that the residents of Yerushalayim not hold the Lulav on Shabbos so that there would not be two divergent practices in one city. The Gemara, therefore, follows the opinion of Abaye, who says that in one city the principle of "Lo Tisgodedu" applies.

The ARUCH LA'NER asks that this answer is not consistent with the context of the Gemara's discussion, which refers to the period after the Churban of the Beis ha'Mikdash. After the Churban, the Mitzvah of Aliyah l'Regel no longer applied, and thus there was no reason why Jews from outside of Eretz Yisrael would be in Yerushalayim during Sukos such that "Lo Tisgodedu" should have posed a problem.

(c) The ARUCH LA'NER in Yevamos (14a) suggests that mid'Oraisa, the law of "Lo Tisgodedu" applies only in the cases that Rava and Abaye describe, respectively. The Rabanan, however, have the authority to enact an Isur d'Rabanan of "Lo Tisgodedu" in order to prevent variant practices even in two different communities when they see fit, such as in this case.

2) OBSERVING TWO DAYS OF YOM TOV IN ERETZ YISRAEL BECAUSE OF "LO TISGODEDU"

QUESTION: The Gemara (43a) explains that the enactment not to hold the Lulav on Shabbos does not apply on the first day of Yom Tov. That day is accorded special status, because on that day the Mitzvah is mid'Oraisa even in the "Gevulin." During the rest of the festival, the Mitzvah is only mid'Rabanan in the "Gevulin," and therefore the Rabanan applied the Gezeirah during those days of Sukos even in the Beis ha'Mikdash.

This difference between the first day of Sukos and the other days applies only in Eretz Yisrael. Outside of Eretz Yisrael, where the people are not expert in determining the new month, the Mitzvah of Lulav is not performed on Shabbos even on the first day of Yom Tov (because of the doubt whether that day is Yom Tov).

The Gemara here (44a) concludes that nowadays even in Eretz Yisrael the Lulav is not held on the first day of Sukos when it occurs on Shabbos. Since the people outside of Eretz Yisrael do not hold the Lulav on that day, the people in Eretz Yisrael also do not hold the Lulav on that day. RASHI explains that this practice was enacted because of "Lo Tisgodedu," the Torah's requirement that different groups of Jews not have different practices.

If the Rabanan were concerned that the Jews in Eretz Yisrael and the Jews in Chutz la'Aretz not have different practices -- even though the practice in Chutz la'Aretz differs only because of the doubt about which day is Yom Tov -- then why did they not also ordain that the Jews in Eretz Yisrael must observe two days of Yom Tov, just as the Jews in Chutz la'Aretz must observe two days of Yom Tov? (MAHARASHDAM YD 153, LECHEM MISHNEH, Hilchos Lulav 7:17)

ANSWERS:

(a) The LECHEM MISHNEH answers that there is a difference between changing the practice in Eretz Yisrael by instituting a passive, "Shev v'Al Ta'aseh" practice, and changing it by instituting an active, "Kum v'Aseh" practice. In order to standardize the practice of Jews throughout the world, the Rabanan may uproot a practice by instituting a "Shev v'Al Ta'aseh" enactment that the people not hold a Lulav on Shabbos in Eretz Yisrael. In contrast, the Rabanan do not institute an active practice, a "Kum v'Aseh," such as the requirement for the Jews in Eretz Yisrael to observe a second day of Yom Tov.

(b) Even in Eretz Yisrael, there is a reason not to hold the Lulav on the first day of Sukos when it occurs on Shabbos. Rabah says that the Rabanan decreed that, even in Eretz Yisrael, on any of the remaining six days of Sukos that occurs on Shabbos, one may not hold the Lulav lest one carry it four Amos through Reshus ha'Rabim in order to bring it to an expert to learn how to perform the Mitzvah. The Rabanan did not apply their enactment to the first day of Yom Tov in Eretz Yisrael only because of the special status of that day (it is the only day on which the Mitzvah of Lulav is mid'Oraisa everywhere, even in the "Gevulin").

However, after the Churban, when many Jews were exiled to Chutz la'Aretz and no longer held the Lulav on Shabbos even on the first day of Yom Tov (because of their doubt about the exact date), the Rabanan combined the concern for "Lo Tisgodedu" with the Gezeirah (lest one carry the Lulav in Reshus ha'Rabim) and prohibited holding the Lulav on the first day of Yom Tov even in Eretz Yisrael.

In contrast, there is no rational basis to institute a second day of Yom Tov in Eretz Yisrael, other than the concern for "Lo Tisgodedu." That concern alone is not sufficient to necessitate such an enactment in Eretz Yisrael. (M. KORNFELD)

44b----------------------------------------44b

3) RECITING A BLESSING FOR A CUSTOM

QUESTION: The Gemara quotes Aivo who relates that Rebbi Elazar was given an Aravah branch and he waved it ("Chibut") but did not recite a blessing. Rebbi Elazar maintained that the waving of the Aravah branch is "Minhag Nevi'im," a custom initiated by the prophets.

TOSFOS quotes RABEINU TAM who points out that the Gemara here seems to contradict the Gemara elsewhere. The Gemara here implies that no blessing is recited upon the performance of a Minhag, and that is why no blessing is recited for the act of Chibut Aravah. However, the Gemara in Ta'anis (28b) implies that a blessing is recited upon the performance of a Minhag.

The Gemara there relates that when Rav visited Bavel, he saw that the community recited Hallel on Rosh Chodesh. He wanted to stop them, until he noticed that they skipped parts of Hallel. He understood from their omissions that their recitation of Hallel was merely a Minhag from their forebears. Rabeinu Tam there points out that if the people in Bavel did not recite a blessing for their Minhag of saying Hallel on Rosh Chodesh, it would have been obvious to Rav that their practice was merely a Minhag and he would not have had any reason to stop them. Rabeinu Tam here adds that the requirement to recite a blessing for a Minhag is also evident from the fact that blessings are recited upon the performance of the Mitzvos (such as Arba'as ha'Minim on Sukos, and Matzah on Pesach) on Yom Tov Sheni, the second day of Yom Tov outside of Eretz Yisrael, even though Yom Tov Sheni is only a Minhag, as the Gemara says in Beitzah (4b).

The HAGAHOS MAIMONIYOS (Hilchos Chanukah 3:7, #5) cites further proof that a blessing is recited for a Minhag from Maseches Sofrim, which states that a blessing ("... Asher Kideshanu b'Mitzvosav v'Tzivanu...") is recited when each of the Megilos is read. The obligation to read the Megilos (Eichah, Koheles, Ruth, Shir ha'Shirim) at certain times of the year is not mentioned anywhere in the Gemara and is only a Minhag, but yet a blessing is still recited.

Rabeinu Tam answers that the Gemara in Ta'anis does not contradict the Gemara here, because the Minhag to say Hallel on Rosh Chodesh is different from the Minhag of Chibut Aravah. What is the difference between the Minhag of Chibut Aravah (for which no blessing is recited) and the other Minhagim (for which a blessing is recited)? Rabeinu Tam says that the Minhag of Chibut Aravah involves nothing more than a simple act of waving the Aravah. The reading of Hallel, however, is a more significant act, "because it is like reading verses from the Torah."

What does Rabeinu Tam mean? How can one say a blessing with the words, "... Asher Kideshanu b'Mitzvosav v'Tzivanu...," simply because the Minhag is "like reading verses from the Torah"? Neither the Torah nor the Chachamim command that Hallel be recited on Rosh Chodesh, just as they do not command that the Aravah be waved on Sukos. Moreover, how does Rabeinu Tam's answer explain why blessings are recited for the Mitzvos performed on Yom Tov Sheni?

ANSWER: The BRISKER RAV (end of Chidushim to Maseches Sukah) explains as follows. RASHI here (44a, DH Minhag) writes that the reason why a blessing is not recited for a Minhag is because the requirement to observe a Minhag is not included in the Mitzvah of "Lo Sasur" -- "Do not turn away from what they (the Chachamim) instruct you" (Devarim 17:11).

However, according to the RAMBAM, "Lo Sasur" includes the obligation to obey any Mitzvah d'Rabanan and any Minhag that the Chachamim instructed us to observe (introduction to Mishneh Torah; see Sefer ha'Mitzvos, Shoresh Rishon; Lo Sa'aseh #312, Mitzvas Aseh #174). Why, according to the Rambam, is no blessing recited for the Minhag of Chibut Aravah?

The Brisker Rav explains that it must be that the blessing recited upon the performance of the act is not related to whether the act is a Minhag or a Mitzvah. Rather, when the Chachamim instructed that a certain Minhag be observed but did not enact it as a Mitzvah, their intent was to give it a status different from the status of a Mitzvah. They wanted it to have the status of an obligation of a Minhag, and not an obligation of a Mitzvah. This means that they wanted a certain practice to be observed but they did not want to define the practice as a Mitzvah (a "Shem Mitzvah"). For example, when the Chachamim enacted the Minhag of Chibut Aravah, they did not want the nature of the act to be considered any more than an act of picking up an Aravah and hitting the floor with it ("Einah Ela Tiltul," in the words of Rabeinu Tam here). It is not a new category of Mitzvah called "Chibut Aravah" which one can "fulfill" or "not fulfill."

For such a Minhag, no blessing is recited. Other Minhagim are different and require that a blessing be recited before they are performed. The Mitzvos performed on Yom Tov Sheni (Lulav, Sukah, Matzah) are defined as acts of Mitzvah, since the Torah commands them as Mitzvos for the first day of Yom Tov. The act of holding a Lulav on Yom Tov Sheni is defined as an act of Mitzvah of "Netilas Lulav" and not merely a motion of bending down and picking up a palm branch. The same applies to reading the Megilos and reciting Hallel. When Rabeinu Tam says that the recitation of Hallel is no different from the reading of the Torah, he means that the act of reading the Torah is a Mitzvah for which the Chachamim instituted a blessing, and thus any act of reading a portion of the Torah is included in the definition of the "Shem Mitzvah" of "Keri'as ha'Torah."

The RAMBAM (Hilchos Chanukah 3:7), however, rules that a blessing is not recited for Hallel on Rosh Chodesh "because it is a Minhag, and we do not recite a blessing for a Minhag." However, he seems to contradict this ruling when he writes (in Hilchos Yom Tov 6:14) that Yom Tov Sheni is also a Minhag, and yet he agrees that the Mitzvos of Yom Tov Sheni do require blessings. Why is Hallel different from the Mitzvos of Yom Tov Sheni, according to the Rambam? Both should require a blessing.

The Brisker Rav explains that the Rambam agrees that there is a difference between a Minhag which the Chachamim defined as an act of "Mitzvah" and a Minhag which they did not designate as a Mitzvah, but for which they merely prescribed the motions of a certain act. Accordingly, the Rambam agrees that blessings are recited for the Mitzvos of the Minhag of Yom Tov Sheni. The reading of Hallel, though, is different.

The Brisker Rav quotes his father, Rabeinu Chaim ha'Levi, who explains that the blessing recited for reading the Torah is not clearly a Birkas ha'Mitzvos, a blessing recited upon the performance of a Mitzvah. There is reason to say that the blessing recited upon reading the Torah is not recited for the fulfillment of the Mitzvah, but rather it is recited as an expression of reverence for the Torah. (Indeed, the Gemara in Berachos (21a) derives this blessing from the verse (Devarim 32:3), "Ki Shem Hash-m Ekra Havu Godel l'Elokeinu.") Accordingly, it is possible that the Chachamim did not define the reading of the Torah as an act of Mitzvah for which a blessing of a Mitzvah must be recited (perhaps they established that a blessing is not recited on this type of Mitzvah). Therefore, the recitation of half-Hallel does not warrant a Birkas ha'Mitzvah ("li'Kro Es ha'Hallel") because it is compared to the Mitzvah of reading from the Torah, which does not have a Birkas ha'Mitzvah. (See also Insights to Ta'anis 28:1.)

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