NEDARIM 63 (10 Av) - The Daf for Tisha b'Av this year has been dedicated by Mrs. Gitti Kornfeld in memory of her father, Reb Yisrael Shimon ben Shlomo ha'Levi Turkel, whose Yahrzeit is on 10 Av.
12TH CYCLE DEDICATION
NEDARIM 63 (16 Adar) - dedicated by Avi Berger of in memory of his father, Reb Pinchas ben Reb Avraham Yitzchak, on the day of his Yahrzeit.
1) WAITING UNTIL THE RAIN OR THE TIME OF THE RAIN
QUESTION: The Gemara cites a Beraisa in which Raban Shimon ben Gamliel states that there is a situation in which rain that falls for seven consecutive days counts as both the first Revi'ah and the second Revi'ah. The Gemara explains that Raban Shimon ben Gamliel follows the opinion of Rebbi Yosi who says that the date of the first Revi'ah is the seventeenth of Marcheshvan, and the date of the second Revi'ah is the twenty-third of Marcheshvan, which are seven days apart. If it rains for the seven days from the seventeenth until the twenty-third of Marcheshvan, those rains count as the first Revi'ah and as the second Revi'ah.
The Gemara apparently cites this statement in the context of its discussion about a person who makes a Neder to prohibit wine upon himself "until the rains" ("Ad ha'Geshamim").
However, according to Raban Shimon ben Gamliel, what difference does it make whether the rain that falls at the end of the seven consecutive days of rainfall is considered rain of the second Revi'ah or not? In the Mishnah, Raban Shimon ben Gamliel disagrees with the Rabanan and says that the person's Neder ("Ad ha'Geshamim") applies only until the time of the second Revi'ah, even if no rain actually falls!
(a) The RAN and ME'IRI explain that Raban Shimon ben Gamliel makes his statement from the viewpoint of the Rabanan. Raban Shimon ben Gamliel means that even the Rabanan -- who maintain that the Neder is in force until rain actually falls -- admit that when there is one long rainfall which lasts for seven days, the rain that falls on the twenty-third of Marcheshvan counts as the second Revi'ah and the Neder becomes permitted.
(b) The ROSH and TOSFOS explain that Raban Shimon ben Gamliel's statement applies not in the context of a Neder of "Ad ha'Geshamim" but in the context of a completely different Halachah, one which is not mentioned in the Gemara here but in Ta'anis (6a). The Gemara there teaches that besides its implication for Nedarim, the second Revi'ah is significant for other Halachos as well. For example, the second Revi'ah marks the time after which one may no longer take shortcuts through privately-owned fields. With regard to that Halachah Raban Shimon ben Gamliel says that the seventh day of rain counts as the second Revi'ah (because that Halachah depends not on the actual date of the second Revi'ah but on the degree of muddiness of the fields).
According to this interpretation, the Gemara here does not need to mention Raban Shimon ben Gamliel's ruling. The Gemara cites his ruling only tangentially because it is related to the Machlokes Tana'im (which the Gemara quoted earlier) about the dates of the various Revi'os.
(c) The RAMBAM (Hilchos Nedarim 10:11) apparently has a novel understanding of Raban Shimon ben Gamliel's statement. The Rambam rules that when a person makes a Neder to prohibit himself from wine "until the rain" -- "Ad ha'Geshem," he is prohibited until the third Revi'ah. (The Gemara here (end of 62b) rules that he is prohibited until "Zeman Geshamim," which the Rambam defines as the time of the third Revi'ah. This is in contradistinction to the Ran's definition, who explains that "Zeman Geshamim" refers to the second Revi'ah, and to the definition of the Rosh and most other Rishonim who explain that it refers to the first Revi'ah.)
The Rambam adds, however, that if rain actually falls, the Neder is no longer in effect even if the rain comes only at the first Revi'ah. Only when no rain falls does the Neder remain in effect until the third Revi'ah.
All of the commentators ask what the source is for the Rambam's ruling that if rain actually falls the "Zeman Geshamim" is considered to be earlier than the third Revi'ah. The VILNA GA'ON (in BI'UR HA'GRA, YD 220:18) suggests that the Rambam must have a different Girsa in the Gemara.
Perhaps his Girsa differed from that of our texts in the last line on 62b where the Gemara says, "Ad ha'Geshem, Ad Zeman Geshamim." The Rambam's text might have read, "Ad ha'Geshem, Ad ha'Geshem O' Ad Zeman Geshamim," which means that if one makes a Neder by saying "Ad ha'Geshem," the Neder is in effect "until the [first actual] rain, or until the [entire] time of rainfall [has arrived]."
According to the Rambam, Raban Shimon ben Gamliel's ruling that seven consecutive days of one rainfall count as both the first Revi'ah and the second Revi'ah might be the very point which the Gemara uses to disprove Rebbi Zeira's statement that a Neder of "Ad ha'Geshem" is prohibited "until the [first actual] rain, or until the Zeman Geshamim." According to the other Rishonim, why the Gemara assumes that Raban Shimon ben Gamliel's statement contradicts Rebbi Zeira's ruling is not clear. Where in Raban Shimon ben Gamliel's words, or anywhere in the Beraisa, is there any indication that the Beraisa refers to a person who made a Neder "Ad ha'Geshem" as opposed to "Ad ha'Geshamim"? The Rishonim are forced to explain that the Gemara assumes that an ordinary Neder is made with the words "Ad ha'Geshem" and not "Ad ha'Geshamim," and thus the Beraisa presumably discusses an ordinary Neder. There is no source, however, in the Gemara or the Mishnah to make such an assumption that a Neder of "Ad ha'Geshem" is more common than "Ad ha'Geshamim."
According to the Rambam, the intent of the Gemara's question is clear. Raban Shimon ben Gamliel cannot be referring to a Neder made "Ad ha'Geshamim" because such a Neder would not depend on whether or not it rains; such a Neder depends on the date and not on the actual rainfall according to Raban Shimon ben Gamliel's own ruling (as mentioned above). The Gemara proves from here that Raban Shimon ben Gamliel must be discussing a Neder of "Ad ha'Geshem" and that is why the duration of the Neder depends on the actual rainfall. The Gemara's question on Rebbi Zeira is that Raban Shimon ben Gamliel's statement proves that it is not enough to have rain at the time of the first Revi'ah to end the Neder, but there must also be rain at the time of the second Revi'ah in order to end the Neder, in clear contrast to the ruling of Rebbi Zeira.
The Gemara answers that Raban Shimon ben Gamliel is discussing a Neder made "Ad ha'Geshamim" and he is saying that it depends on the rainfall at the time of the second Revi'ah, and he is speaking from the viewpoint of the Rabanan (as the Ran explains).
If this understanding is correct, the Gemara here may be the source for the Rambam's ruling that if it does not rain, the Neder remains in effect until the third Revi'ah. The Gemara's original assumption was that the arrival of the date of the first and second Revi'ah will not end the Neder if the Neder was "Ad ha'Geshem." The Gemara's Havah Amina was that if no rain falls, the time of the first and second Revi'ah is not enough to end the Neder, but rather one must wait until the third Revi'ah.
2) THE REAL "ADAR" IN A LEAP YEAR
HALACHAH: The Gemara cites a dispute between Rebbi Meir and Rebbi Yehudah who disagree about the nomenclature of the two months of Adar in a leap year. According to Rebbi Meir, the word "Adar" unqualified refers to the second Adar. When one wants to refer to the first Adar he must specify "Adar Rishon." According to Rebbi Yehudah, the word "Adar" unqualified refers to the first Adar. When one wants to refer to the second Adar he must specify "Adar Sheni."
The Mishnah (63a) follows the view of Rebbi Yehudah when it teaches that when one specifies that his Neder will last "until the beginning of Adar," his Neder lasts until the beginning of Adar Rishon. The Gemara explains that the Mishnah may conform with the view of Rebbi Meir as well in a case in which the person made the Neder before he was aware that the year would be a leap year. Since he thought that there would be only one Adar, his words "until the beginning of Adar" obviously referred to the beginning of the first Adar (the month after Shevat).
What is the Halachah? Which Adar is considered the "real" Adar and which is the extra month?
(a) The RAMBAM (Hilchos Nedarim 10:6) rules in accordance with the view of Rebbi Meir. He infers that the Halachah follows Rebbi Meir from the fact that the Gemara attempts to explain how the Mishnah can conform with Rebbi Meir's opinion. Accordingly, when a person makes a Neder "until Adar," if he knows that there will be two months of Adar in the year, his words are understood to mean "until Adar Sheni." If he does not know that the year will be a leap year, his words are understood to mean "until Adar Rishon." (The SHACH (YD 220:8) infers from the words of TOSFOS (end of 63b) that Tosfos also rules like Rebbi Meir.)
(b) Most Rishonim (RAN, ROSH, RA'AVAD, TERUMAS HA'DESHEN #294, and others) rule in accordance with the view of Rebbi Yehudah and explain the Mishnah according to its straightforward understanding, that "Adar" unqualified always refers to Adar Rishon regardless of whether or not the person knows that it is a leap year. They rule this way because of the well-known rule (Eruvin 46b) that when Rebbi Meir and Rebbi Yehudah argue the Halachah follows the view of Rebbi Yehudah.
According to these Rishonim, when the Gemara attempts to show how the Mishnah conforms with the opinion of Rebbi Meir, the Gemara does so only because of the rule that an unattributed Mishnah (which mentions no name) is the view of Rebbi Meir, but not because the Halachah follows Rebbi Meir.
HALACHAH: The SHULCHAN ARUCH cites both in opinions in the laws of Nedarim (YD 220:8) and in the laws of writing a Get (EH 126:7). He seems to rule stringently and follow both opinions, l'Chumra.
However, in the laws of writing the date in a contract (CM 43:28), the Shulchan Aruch cites only the ruling of the Ran that the Halachah follows the view of Rebbi Yehudah who says that the first Adar is called "Adar" unqualified.
Apparently, the Shulchan Aruch considers the Ran's ruling the more conclusive one, but in matters which involve an Isur (such as Get and Neder) the Shulchan Aruch is stringent and follows both opinions. The REMA, in contrast, rules consistently like the Ran, that the first Adar is the "real" one (OC 568:7 and end of YD 402 with regard to the observance of a Yahrtzeit; OC 427 with regard to the dating of contracts; EH 126:7 with regard to the writing of a Get).
However, in the laws of the observance of a Yahrtzeit (OC 568:7), the Shulchan Aruch cites only the opinion of the Rambam that the Halachah follows the view of Rebbi Meir who says that the second Adar is called "Adar" unqualified!
The MAGEN AVRAHAM and VILNA GA'ON explain that although the Shulchan Aruch considers the Ran's ruling the more conclusive one and thus he rules like Rebbi Yehudah that the first Adar is "Adar," he rules this way only with regard to the way people speak (Lashon Bnei Adam). However, with regard to the essence of the month, the Shulchan Aruch rules that the "real" Adar is the second Adar. (Similarly, Tosfos here writes with regard to the reading of the Megilah on Purim that the second Adar is considered the "real" one. See also RASHI to Rosh Hashanah 19b, DH Kamah, and TOSFOS there, DH Adar, who point out that the Gemara calls the first Adar the "Chodesh ha'Ibur," the extra month.)
In practice, the SHACH (YD 220:7) writes that even in cases of Nedarim and contracts we should be stringent out of doubt and take into account the opinion of the Rambam, since a number of other Rishonim rule like him.
With regard to the date of the observance of a Yahrtzeit (which does not depend on the way people speak), the Magen Avraham and Vilna Ga'on conclude that we should be stringent not only out of doubt but even according to the letter of the law and treat both months of Adar as the real Adar. The Mishnah in Megilah (6b) states that "there is no difference between the first and second Adar except for the reading of Megilah and Matanos la'Evyonim." Accordingly, one should observe the Yahrtzeit and fast (if he accepted upon himself such a practice) on the date of the Yahrtzeit in both months of Adar.
One exception to this ruling is the age at which a boy becomes Bar Mitzvah. The REMA (OC 55:10) writes that a boy born in Adar of an ordinary year who reaches the age of thirteen in a leap year becomes obligated in Mitzvos as a Bar Mitzvah only in Adar Sheni. The Rema implies that this is not because of a doubt, but because he is considered an adult only in the second Adar. Why does the Rema rule like this? The Rema himself rules in the laws of Yahrtzeit and Nedarim that the first Adar is the "real" one.
The ARUCH HA'SHULCHAN (OC 55:14) explains that the age of Bar Mitzvah does not depend on a specific date. Rather, it depends on the count of years that must pass before the child is considered an adult. Even if the first Adar is called "Adar," nevertheless when we count thirteen years from the boy's birth we must include the added month, the Chodesh ha'Ibur, as the Mishnah says with regard to a Neder. (That is, when one makes a Neder to prohibit wine upon himself for "a year," the Chodesh ha'Ibur is included in the Neder and he is prohibited from wine for thirteen months.) The boy's final year of childhood concludes after thirteen months have passed, including the final year's Chodesh ha'Ibur.