ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
Prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
of Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Yerushalayim
(a) At the Simchas Beis Hasho'evah ...
1. ... the pious men and men of good deeds who had never sinned would say 'Ashrei Yalduseinu, she'Lo Biyshah es Ziknaseinu' (How praiseworthy is our youth, which did not shame our old age!) ...
2. ... whereas the Ba'alei Teshuvah used to announce 'Ashrei Ziknaseinu, she'Kiprah es Yalduseinu' (How praiseworthy is our old age, which atoned for our youth!).
(b) They would both add - 'Praiseworthy is the man who did not sin. Someone who did, should do Teshuvah and he will be pardoned.
(a) Hillel used to say 'Im Ani Ka'an, ha'Kol Ka'an'. 'Ani' - refers to Hash-m (as we explained above on 45a) (see also Tosfos DH 'Im').
(b) He also used to say (though it is not clear that he said this at the Simchas Beis Hasho'evah') 'The place that I love, there my feet carry me', adding - 'If you will come to My house, I will come to your's. And if you don't come to Mine, I won't come to your's'!, as it is written in Yisro "Wherever My Name is mentioned, I will come to you and bless you'
(c) And when he saw the skull of a known murderer floating on the water, he said - 'Because you drowned others, you were drowned, and the one who drowned you, will eventually himself be drowned'.
(a) Rebbi Yochanan said that - a man's feet are his guarantors; wherever he is destined to be (when Hash-m wants him there - to die), his feet will take him there (see Agados Maharsha DH 'Taman' (It is unclear however, why Rashi restricts Rebbi Yochanan's statement to where the person is destined to die).
(b) Elicharaf and Achyah, the sons of Shishah - were Shlomo ha'Melech's scribes. He sent them to Luz (a town where nobody died) after having been told by a dejected-looking Angel of Death that he had been ordered to kill them. Not understanding the reason for the Mal'ach ha'Ma'ves' morose demeanor - he sent them with demons to Luz (thinking that he would save their lives).
(c) As they reached the gates of Luz, they died.
(d) The following day, a happy Mal'ach ha'Ma'ves informed Shlomo that he had been ordered to kill the two men at the gates of Luz, but had not known how to get them there. Shlomo had played right into his hands, and with the swiftest of Sheluchim.
(e) That is when Shlomo ruefully said - 'A man's feet are his guarantors; wherever he is destined to be, they will take him there'!
(a) Raban Shimon ben Gamliel used to dance at the Simchas Beis Hasho'evah with eight fire-brands (others used to dance with eggs or cups of wine). He also used to perform Kidah (prostrating himself by falling flat in a way that only his face touched the ground, and coming up again without using the force of his hands - seeing as only the thumbs of his hands were touching the floor).
(b) When Levi attempted Kidah in front of Rebbi - he became lame.
(c) This was a punishment - for having once spoken out harshly against Hash-m - accusing Him of ascending to the heaven and not keeping watch over His people Yisrael (in spite of the Pasuk in Tehilim "Behold the Guardian of Yisrael neither sleeps nor slumbers").
(a) Rebbi Yehoshua ben Chananya, who was a Levi, testified that they did not sleep for a full seven days during the Sukos festivities. They would go from the Tamid shel Shachar to Tefilas Shacharis ... to the Korban Musaf ...to Tefilas Musaf - to the Beis ha'Medrash ... to the dining-room ... to Tefilas Minchah ... to the Tamid shel Bein ha'Arbayim and then to the Simchas Beis Hasho'evah, which lasted throughout the night.
(b) The literal interpretation of Rebbi Yehoshua's testimony is unacceptable - on the grounds of Rebbi Yochanan's ruling, that someone who takes an oath not to sleep for three days, receives Malkus and is permitted to sleep immediately (seeing as it is impossible to go for three days without sleeping - let alone seven).
(c) What he really meant however, is that - they did not sleep properly for the entire seven-day period (they would merely doze off leaning on each other's shoulders).
(a) A certain Rav explained that the fifteen steps (leading from the Ezras Yisrael down to the Ezras Nashim) corresponded to the occasion when David was digging the Shitin for the Mizbe'ach, and the water threatened to rise and drown the world. He then said the fifteen Shir ha'Ma'alos and the water subsided. In that case, asks Rav Chisda, he should have called them, not 'Shir ha'Ma'alos', but 'Shir ha'Yordos'!?
(b) The correct version of the story therefore is that - David ha'Melech first threw the Name of Hash-m (which he had written on a piece of clay) into the threatening water, at which it subsided to a depth of sixteen thousand Amos (a depth that would cause the world to dry up). So he recited the fifteen 'Shir ha'Ma'alos', raising its level by one thousand Amos with each 'Shir ha'Ma'alos' that he recited, until finally, the water leveled off at one thousand Amos.
(c) David ha'Melech, not knowing the Halachah, announced that whoever knew whether it was permitted to write the Name of Hash-m in order to save the world and refused to divulge the ruling, would suffocate. Achitofel permitted it from a Kal va'Chomer from Sotah - if it was permitted to write the Name of Hash-m and throw it into the water, in order to make peace between a man and his wife, then it should certainly be permitted to bring peace to the whole world!
(d) Even though the outer crust of the world is one thousand Amos thick, it sometimes happens that one strikes water much closer to the surface - foe example by the 'Ladder of the Euphrates', whose waters are higher (closer to the surface) than those of most rivers.
(a) They blew the trumpets again when they reached the tenth step - we are uncertain whether the Tana is referring to the tenth step from the top or from the bottom.
(b) Having stated (with regard to their ancestors) 'their faces to the east', it was nevertheless necessary to add 'and their backs to the west' - because this hints at the additional abomination that they perpetrated by exposing themselves and defecating towards the Heichal.
(c) Despite Rebbi Zeira having taught us that saying 'Shema, Shema', it is as if one is referring to dual deities, Rebbi Yehudah requires those who were going to fill the water to say 'Anu l'Kah, u'le'Kah Eineinu'. This is because - what they actually said was 'Anu l'Kah Mishtachavim, v'Eineinu l'Kah Meyachalos' (and since prostrating oneself and longing are two different things, it does not give the impression of acknowledging two deities).
(a) Our Mishnah gives the minimum number of Teki'os daily as twenty-one - three for the opening of the gates (early in the morning), nine for the Tamid shel Shachar and nine for the Tamid shel Beis ha'Arbayim.
(b) It gives the maximum number - as forty-eight.
(c) Each time they blew nine blasts for the Korban - they would blow three at the beginning of the Shir, when they reached a third of the way and when they reached the two-thirds mark.
(d) Each time the Kohanim blew the trumpets - the people would prostrate themselves to the ground.
(a) For the Korban Musaf too - they would blow nine blasts.
(b) The significance of the ...
1. ... six blasts that they blew on Erev Shabbos were - three to stop the people from doing work, and three to bring in Shabbos.
2. ...remaining twelve blasts that made up the forty-eight on Erev Shabbos during Sukos - were all connected with the water-drawing ceremony (to add to the Simchah),as we shall now see.
(c) The Kohanim blew three of these blasts when the Kohen (and the group that was accompanying him) who was about to set out to fill the jar with water, reached the upper-gate (the Sha'ar Nikanor), three ... when he reached the lower gate (leading out of the Ezras Nashim on the east) - three when he re-entered the Azarah through the Sha'ar ha'Mayim, and three when the Kohanim placed the Aravos on the Yesod of the Mizbe'ach.
(d) Their source of these Teki'os is - the Pasuk in Yeshayah "u'She'avtem Mayim b'Sason".
(a) Rebbi Yehudah lists the minimum number of blasts as seven, and the maximum as eighteen - because he holds that each set of Teki'ah, Teru'ah, Teki'ah is considered one blast; whereas the Rabanan consider them as three.
1. Rebbi Yehudah learns from the Pasuk "u'Seka'tem Teru'ah" - that Teki'ah and Teru'ah are both part of the same note.
2. The Tana Kama learns from "u've'Hakhil es ha'Kahal, Tiske'u v'Lo Sari'u" - that they are two independent notes (otherwise, the Torah would be telling them to blow half a note.
(c) Rebbi Yehudah counters that this last case was not really a Mitzvah, but only a Siman (so it did not matter that they were only blowing half a note). The Rabanan refute Rebbi Yehudah's argument by saying that - although it might have initially begun as a Siman, nevertheless, the Torah has now turned into a Mitzvah, and it would not issue a command to perform half a Mitzvah, as we explained.
(a) When Rav Kahana says that there is nothing between the Teki'ah and the Teru'ah - he means that no pause is permitted between the Teki'ah and the Teru'ah (only a minimum of one breath), like Rebbi Yehudah, who considers them all to be one note.
(b) We try to reconcile Rav Kahana's statement with the Rabanan (who consider them to be two notes) - and what he would then mean is that one is not permitted to make a long break (like Rebbi Yochanan, who permits even nine notes in the space of nine hours), but that a short pause would be permitted.
(c) We reject this suggestion however - on the grounds that Rav Kahana should not then have said 've'Lo Klum', implying that not even a short pause is permitted, like Rebbi Yehudah.
Index to Review Questions and Answers for Maseches Sukah