1) WHICH LAWS ARE MORE STRINGENT -- THOSE OF SHABBOS OR YOM TOV?
QUESTION: The Gemara compares the laws of moving bundles of produce in a storehouse on Shabbos (to make room for students or guests) to the laws of lowering bundles of fruit from a roof on Yom Tov (to prevent them from spoiling in the rain).
The Gemara addresses four aspects of these two sets of laws:
1. May more than four or five basketfuls of fruit be moved in each case?
2. May the entire area be cleared, leaving none of the produce behind?
3. May the produce be moved to a different house or roof?
4. May the bundles be lifted, or must they be pushed or dragged without being lifted?
The Halachah on Shabbos with regard to the first two questions is clear -- both acts are prohibited when one moves bundles of produce in order to make room for students or guests. The Gemara asks whether the law is more lenient with regard to lowering fruit from a roof on Yom Tov.
Similarly, the Halachah on Yom Tov with regard to the last two questions is clear -- both acts are prohibited when one lowers bundles of produce from his roof in order to prevent them from spoiling in the rain. The Gemara asks whether the law is more lenient with regard to moving produce in a storehouse on Shabbos.
The Gemara proposes two reasons for why the law should be more stringent on Shabbos than on Yom Tov (first, Shabbos in general is more stringent; second, no monetary loss is involved), and two reasons for why the law should be more stringent on Yom Tov than on Shabbos (first, in order to prevent Yom Tov from being treated lightly ("Zilzul Yom Tov"); second, on Yom Tov there is no Bitul Beis ha'Midrash involved).
In each of its four questions, however, the Gemara proposes a different combination of reasons for why the laws of Shabbos should be more stringent than the laws of Yom Tov (or vice versa). Why does the Gemara vary its argument in each case? (See Chart here, which lists the various reasons of the Gemara for differentiating between Shabbos and Yom Tov in each case.)
(a) The PNEI YEHOSHUA suggests that each question of the Gemara was asked at a different time by a different Amora. Each Amora mentioned reasons that he viewed to be the most essential.
(b) According to the Girsa of the DIKDUKEI SOFRIM here (which is endorsed by the SHITAH MEKUBETZES as explained below), the Gemara is meticulous about which arguments it presents at which stage (see Chart). The following paragraphs summarize each question of the Gemara and the arguments which the Gemara presents in each case.
1. According to our text of the Gemara, in the first question the Gemara omits only one of the reasons to differentiate between Shabbos and Yom Tov -- the reason that Shabbos in general is more stringent. The Girsa of the Dikdukei Sofrim includes that reason but omits another one -- there is no monetary loss involved. The RITVA (cited by the SHITAH MEKUBETZES) proves that this Girsa is correct. He says that the Gemara cannot mention monetary loss as a factor because the concern for a monetary loss cannot permit more fruit to be moved on Yom Tov than the amount which may be moved on Shabbos because of Bitul Beis ha'Midrash. This is evident from the fact that the Mishnah explicitly says that the fruit may be moved only on Yom Tov but not on Shabbos, and yet moving fruit because of Bitul Beis ha'Midrash is permitted even on Shabbos! (The RE'AH and RABEINU DAVID suggest a somewhat forced answer to defend the Girsa of our text of the Gemara.) This explains why the Gemara omits the argument of monetary loss when it discusses whether more than four or five boxes may be moved on Yom Tov.
This also explains why the Gemara omits the argument of monetary loss from the discussion of the second question as well. An act that is not permitted on Shabbos because of Bitul Beis ha'Midrash cannot be permitted on Shabbos due to the risk of monetary loss. (The Girsa of the Dikdukei Sofrim does include the reason of monetary loss in the discussion of the second question, as does the Girsa of the RE'AH and RABEINU DAVID (but they explain the reasoning in a way that is similar to the way they explain the same reasoning in the Gemara's first question, as alluded to above). However, it is clear from both the Ritva and the Shitah Mekubetzes in the name of "Mori Ner'u" that their Girsa does not include this reasoning in the second question.)
In the last two questions, however, the Halachah on Yom Tov is known; one may neither lift the produce nor move the produce from one roof to another. The Gemara's only question is whether one may lift or move the produce on Shabbos. The Gemara legitimately suggests that if these acts are prohibited on Yom Tov even though a risk of monetary loss is involved, then they should be prohibited on Shabbos as well. (Even though Bitul Beis ha'Midrash permits more than the risk of monetary loss permits, the Gemara assumes at this point that it is not sufficient reason to permit lifting the produce or moving the produce from roof to roof.)
2. In the second question (may the entire area be cleared), the Gemara omits the argument of monetary loss (as discussed above), and it also omits the argument of Zilzul Yom Tov.
The SHITAH MEKUBETZES explains (in the name of "Mori Ner'u") that the reason for this omission is that this question does not involve merely an Isur d'Rabanan of Tircha (excessive exertion) on Shabbos, but rather a Gezeirah d'Rabanan lest one fill-in furrows in the ground. Since there is a risk that one will transgress an Isur Kares by filling-in furrows on Shabbos, there is no doubt that Shabbos is more stringent than Yom Tov in this matter.
Moreover, it seems that there actually is no risk of Zilzul Yom Tov in the case of clearing the entire area because Zilzul Yom Tov is applicable only to an act that might be viewed as an unnecessary Tircha. Emptying an area of only four or five bundles of fruit is no more of a Tircha than moving the same number of bundles when others remain there. The only reason to prohibit it is the Gezeirah that one might do a Melachah (fill furrows). Zilzul Yom Tov is not a reason to prohibit it.
3. In the Gemara's third question, although our text of the Gemara mentions other arguments, the Dikdukei Sofrim's Girsa mentions only the arguments of loss of fruit and Bitul Beis ha'Midrash (see #4 below). This is also the Girsa of the RE'AH and the SHITAH MEKUBETZES (who also gives explanations for the omissions; see there).
4. In its fourth question, the Gemara takes into account only the arguments of loss of fruit and Bitul Beis ha'Midrash, as it does in the third question.
It appears that in the cases of the last two questions, only a minimal Tircha is involved (lifting the fruit instead of pushing it; pushing it to another house instead of into the same house). Therefore, there is no reason to prohibit the act due to the severity of Shabbos or due to the Zilzul of Yom Tov. The severity of Shabbos or Yom Tov is relevant only in the first question, with regard to moving an unlimited number of bundles of fruit, and in the second question, in which emptying the entire area might lead to a violation of the laws of Shabbos (filling-in a furrow, as discussed above in #2). Therefore, in the last two questions the only consideration is whether or not this minor Tircha is really necessary: does the resultant benefit justify such an act? If this is the question, then the Gemara appropriately discusses permitting it because of Bitul Beis ha'Midrash or to prevent the loss of fruit. (M. Kornfeld)
2) MAKING A "GRAF SHEL RE'I" ON YOM TOV
QUESTION: The Gemara relates that Abaye was troubled that his millstone was being ruined by water dripping from a leak in the roof on Yom Tov. Rabah instructed him to bring his bed into the mill-room so that the millstone would then be considered a "Graf Shel Re'i," an unpleasant item to have in one's living quarters, and then Abaye would be permitted to move it away.
Rabah's ruling that one is permitted l'Chatchilah to make a "Graf Shel Re'i" contradicts the Gemara earlier (21b) which teaches that one may not make a "Graf Shel Re'i" l'Chatchilah on Yom Tov. How is Rabah's ruling to be reconciled with the Gemara earlier? (TOSFOS DH Teisi)
(a) TOSFOS answers that one is permitted to make a "Graf Shel Re'i" l'Chatchilah in this case because of the risk of considerable financial loss (the loss of the millstone).
(b) Alternatively, TOSFOS says that Rabah's ruling did not involve making a "Graf Shel Re'i" l'Chatchilah, because the rain was already dripping into the mill-room and some solution had to be found.
(c) The HAGAHOS ASHIRI explains that Rabah's ruling did not involve making a "Graf Shel Re'i" at all. Rabah did not tell Abaye to make a "Graf Shel Re'i"; rather, he told Abaye to move his bed into the mill-room. As a result, the millstone became repugnant to Abaye and he was then permitted to move it. The "Graf Shel Re'i" was always there; it just was not repugnant to him until he moved his bed into the room. (RASHI (21b, DH v'Chi), however, clearly rejects this argument.)
(d) RAV YAAKOV D. HOMNICK suggests a novel approach to reconcile Rabah's ruling with the Gemara earlier. He points out that the Gemara earlier quotes Shmuel who said that one is permitted to invite a Nochri to one's home on Shabbos. The previous Gemara there explains that one may not invite a Nochri to one's home on Shabbos, because by doing so one makes a "Graf Shel Re'i" l'Chatchilah. (When the host serves a cup of wine to the Nochri, the cup becomes a "Graf Shel Re'i" with the leftover wine of the Nochri.) Shmuel apparently argues and maintains that one is permitted to make a "Graf Shel Re'i" l'Chatchilah.
Rav Homnick points out that Shmuel's opinion in this regard may be inferred from his statement in the Gemara here as well. Shmuel states that "one is permitted to take out a Graf Shel Re'i." Whenever RASHI here refers to moving a "Graf Shel Re'i," he consistently uses the term "l'Hotzi" -- "to take out" (see DH Zil, DH v'Chi Osin, DH Nosen, and DH Savur). In the Gemara earlier, however, Rashi makes no mention of the term "l'Hotzi." Rather, he uses the terms "l'Fanos" ("to move away") and "Siluk" ("to remove"; see 21b, DH ul'Havi and DH v'Chi Osin). What is the reason for the change in Rashi's wording?
Rashi is alluding to a fundamental difference between the two Sugyos in the understanding of the allowance to move a "Graf Shel Re'i." Here, Rabah and Shmuel maintain that when the Chachamim permitted one to move a "Graf Shel Re'i" for the sake of a person's comfort, they completely annulled the container's status of Muktzah (that is, the Isur of Muktzah is "Hutrah"). Accordingly, one is permitted to make a "Graf Shel Re'i" even l'Chatchilah in order to "take it out" as one would carry any permitted utensil. Since it is not considered Muktzah at all, he does nothing wrong by moving it.
In contrast, Ravina earlier (21b) maintains that the Rabanan did not remove the status of Muktzah from the container, but they merely permitted this form of Muktzah to be moved (that is, the Isur of Muktzah is "Dechuyah"). Rashi refers to moving the "Graf Shel Re'i" as "moving it away" or "removing it," but not as "taking it out," in order to express this difference. According to Ravina, one is not permitted to make a "Graf Shel Re'i" l'Chatchilah because the item remains Muktzah. Shmuel there, who permits one to host a Nochri on Shabbos, follows his opinion as expressed in the Gemara here that one is permitted to move a "Graf Shel Re'i" because the status of Muktzah is completely removed from the container. Consequently, one is permitted to make a "Graf Shel Re'i" l'Chatchilah (and thus to invite a Nochri to one's home on Shabbos). (Rav Homnick adds that "Mar Shmuel" cited in the Gemara earlier is the same as "Shmuel" in the Gemara here.)
3) IS MARRIAGE A MITZVAH?
QUESTIONS: The Mishnah mentions the act of Kidushin in its list of voluntary acts ("Reshus") that are prohibited on Shabbos and Yom Tov. The Gemara asks why the Mishnah calls Kidushin a "Reshus" if marriage is a Mitzvah. The Gemara answers that the Mishnah refers to a case in which one is already married and has children.
RASHI explains that the Mitzvah which one fulfills by getting married is the Mitzvah of Piryah v'Rivyah, having children. Other than the Mitzvah of Piryah v'Rivyah, there is no inherent Mitzvah in the act of getting married. This explains why the Gemara mentions that the case of the Mishnah is not only where one already has a wife, but he already has children as well.
The ROSH in Kesuvos (1:12) writes that the reason why no blessing (Birkas ha'Mitzvah) is recited for the act of Kidushin is because there is no actual Mitzvah of Kidushin. The only reason why one is obligated to get married is to fulfill the Mitzvah of Piryah v'Rivyah. The words of the Rosh are consistent with the Gemara and Rashi here. However, the Rosh adds that one has the option to fulfill the Mitzvah of Piryah v'Rivyah without getting married at all, by merely taking a Pilegesh (concubine).
(a) According to the Rosh, why does the Gemara here say that the reason why the Mishnah does not count Kidushin as a Mitzvah is because it refers to a case in which one already has a wife and children? The Gemara should answer that there is no Mitzvah to marry a wife because one could fulfill his obligation of Piryah v'Rivyah by taking a Pilegesh.
(b) The RAMBAM (Hilchos Ishus 1:2) writes that marriage is a Mitzvas Aseh. The Rambam apparently maintains that every time a man marries a woman he fulfills a Mitzvah. How does the Rambam understand the Gemara here which says that one who is already married and has children does not fulfill a Mitzvah by getting married?
(a) Apparently, since it is uncommon for a woman to agree to become a man's Pilegesh (since she has no guarantee that the man will take care of her and her children, as she receives no Kesuvah and there is no Kidushin), the Gemara considers Kidushin a Mitzvah because in practice one is unlikely to fulfill Piryah v'Rivyah by taking a Pilegesh. He has no choice but to get married with Kidushin.
The Rosh in Kesuvos writes that no blessing is recited for the act of Kidushin because it is not a Mitzvah, as one could fulfill the Mitzvah of Piryah v'Rivyah by taking a Pilegesh. Even though it is unlikely that one will find a woman to be his Pilegesh, since there exists the possibility of fulfilling Piryah v'Rivyah without Kidushin, Kidushin is not considered an intrinsic part of the Mitzvah of Piryah v'Rivyah and thus no blessing is recited for it.
(b) The MAGID MISHNEH cites RABEINU AVRAHAM BEN HA'RAMBAM who was asked a similar question concerning the opinion of the Rambam. He answered that the Rambam does not mean that the act of Kidushin is a Mitzvah, but rather that the act of Nisu'in is a Mitzvah (which is expressed in the wording of the Rambam in his list of Mitzvos at the beginning of Hilchos Ishus). When the Rambam writes that Kidushin is a Mitzvah he means that it is the beginning of the fulfillment of the Mitzvah of Nisu'in. Here, too, the Gemara does not consider Kidushin a Mitzvah because without Nisu'in the Mitzvah is not completed.
Alternatively, perhaps the Rambam does not mean that it is a Mitzvas Aseh per se to marry a wife with Kidushin. Rather, he means that it is an Isur Aseh (a prohibition that results from a positive commandment) to take a woman without Kidushin. (The Rambam rules that taking a Pilegesh is prohibited; see Hilchos Melachim 4:4.) The Magid Mishneh mentions this possibility later in Hilchos Ishus (1:4). Accordingly, there is no actual Mitzvah in the act of Kidushin, even according to the Rambam.