PERMITTING THINGS WHICH OTHERS ARE STRINGENT ABOUT
Benei Chuzai used to separate Chalah from rice [bread].
Opinion #1 (Rav Yosef): A Zar should eat rice 'Chalah' in front of them [to show that it is not Chalah].
Question (Abaye - Beraisa): If some people [mistakenly] forbid certain things, you may not permit them to them.
Answer (Rav Yosef): Rav Chisda taught that this refers to Kusim (Nochrim whom Sancheriv settled in place of the exiled 10 Shevatim - lions were eating them, so they converted, but they did not keep many of the Mitzvos).
Question: One may not permit things to Kusim, lest they come to be lenient about other things [that are truly forbidden] - the same applies here!
Opinion #2 (Rav Ashi): If most of the bread they eat is rice bread, a Zar should not eat rice 'Chalah' in front of them, lest [amidst not separating anything] they will forget the law of Chalah;
If most of the bread they eat is not rice bread, a Zar should eat rice 'Chalah' in front of them, lest they [think that Chalah applies to rice bread, and they will] separate Chalah from [dough that is] liable on behalf of [what is truly] exempt, or vice-versa.
(Beraisa): If some people [mistakenly] forbid certain things, you may not permit them to them.
(Rav Chisda): This refers to Kusim.
Question: It applies to others also!
(Beraisa): Two brothers may bathe together; in Kavul (a certain place), they do not;
It once happened that two sons of R. Gamliel, Hillel and Yehudah, bathed together there - the whole region was in an uproar - 'this was never done here'!
Hillel [left the bath and] went to the outer room - he did not want to tell them that it is permitted.
People may go out with light shoes on Shabbos; in Biri, people do not;
It once happened that Hillel and Yehudah went out with light shoes on Shabbos in Biri - the whole region was in an uproar.
Hillel and Yehudah removed them and gave them to their slaves [to wear] - they did not want to tell them that it is permitted.
One may sit on benches of Nochrim [on which merchandise is sold] on Shabbos; this is not done in Ako.
It once happened that R. Shimon ben Gamliel sat on such a bench on Shabbos in Ako - the whole region was in an uproar.
He got off - he did not want to tell them that it is permitted.
Answer: Since Chachamim are scarcely found overseas, people there are [unlearned] like Kusim. (Regarding Gitin; some consider places where people are ignorant like Chutz la'Aretz; Tana'im argue about whether or not Ako is considered like Eretz Yisrael (2A-B).)
Question: We understand why Benei Ako do not sit on the benches - people might suspect that they are doing business;
We understand why Benei Biri do not go out with light shoes on Shabbos - they might come to take them off and carry them;
But why shouldn't brothers bathe together?
Answer (Beraisa): One may bathe with anyone, except for his father, father-in-law, step-father or his sister's husband [lest this cause him to think about procreation];
R. Yehudah permits with one's father, in order to honor the father [to serve him in the bathhouse]; the same applies to his stepfather.
People in Kavul decreed about two brothers on account of one's sister's husband.
(Beraisa): A Talmid may not bathe with his Rebbi - if the Rebbi needs the Talmid, it is permitted.
ADOPTING STRINGENCIES OF A NEW RESIDENCE
When Rabah bar bar Chanah came to Bavel, he ate De'aisra (Chelev on the 'bow' (bent side) of the stomach - Benei Eretz Yisrael eat it, Benei Bavel do not eat it). Rav Avira Sava and Rabah bar Rav Huna came to see him - he covered it up.
Rav Avira and Rabah bar Rav Huna told Abaye; he told them 'He treated you like Kusim (he did not want you to see that it is permitted)!'
Question: Rabah bar bar Chanah did not follow our Mishnah!
(Mishnah): ...He must be stringent like his old and new residences.
Answer #1 (Abaye): That only applies to one who goes from one place to another in Eretz Yisrael, or from one place to another in Bavel, or from Bavel to Eretz Yisrael;
It does not apply to one who goes from Eretz Yisrael to Bavel - since Bavel is subservient to Eretz Yisrael (Semichah (ordination) is only in Eretz Yisrael), he may keep his old practice.
Answer #2 (Rav Ashi): We can even say that one who goes from Eretz Yisrael to Bavel gets both stringencies - but only if he intends to stay there;
Rabah bar bar Chanah intended to return to Eretz Yisrael.
Rabah bar bar Chanah (to his children): Do not eat [De'aisra], not in front of me and not in my absence;
I saw R. Yochanan eat it - he is so esteemed that I can rely on him to eat in front of him and in his absence;
You did not see R. Yochanan - you may not eat in front of me or in my absence.
Question: Rabah bar bar Chanah contradicts himself!
(Rabah bar bar Chanah citing R. Yochanan ben Elazar): I once followed R. Yosi ben Lekunya to a garden; he took Sefichim (things that grow by themselves) of cabbage [in Shemitah, after Bi'ur (Rashi) or even before (Tosfos)], ate some, and gave to me - he told me that I may eat, but only in front of him;
I (R. Yosi ben Lekunya) saw R. Shimon eat - he is so important that I can rely on him to eat in front of him and in his absence;
You (R. Yochanan ben Elazar, since you did not see R. Shimon) may eat only in front of me. (The contradiction is not resolved.)
Question: Why does R. Shimon permit?
Answer (Beraisa - R. Shimon): All Sefichim are forbidden, except for Sefichim of cabbage, which is unique among vegetables (Rashi - it has no Bi'ur, for it is never finished in the field; Tosfos - it remains in the ground and grows more leaves, like trees that grow fruits each year - other Sefichim come from seeds that fell);
Chachamim forbid all Sefichim.
Both of them hold like R. Akiva.
(Beraisa - R. Akiva) Question: "Hen Lo Nizra v'Lo Ne'esof Es Tevu'asenu" - if we may not seed in Shemitah, there is nothing to harvest (why must the Torah mention both?)!
Answer: This forbids Sefichim.
Question: What do Chachamim and R. Shimon argue about?
Answer: Chachamim decree to forbid Sefichim of cabbage on account of other Sefichim [that are forbidden mid'Oraisa]; R. Shimon does not decree.
ONE MAY NOT DEVIATE FROM THE LOCAL PRACTICE
(Mishnah): One who goes from a place [where people work...or vice-versa... he may not deviate...]
Question: We understand if in his old residence they work and in the new place they do not, we apply the stringency of the new place; and he may not deviate [from the local custom] lest this cause strife - therefore, he does not work;
But if in the old place they did not work and in the new place they do, since he may not deviate [from the local custom] he must work - but it also says that he follows the stringencies of both places!
Answer #1 (Abaye): 'He may not deviate' refers only to the Reisha (in the old place they work).
Answer #2 (Rava): It applies to the Seifa - it means that [also here, he follows the stringencies of both places and does not work, even though this is unlike the local custom -] the Isur to deviate is solely to avoid strife, and here deviating will not cause strife;
Suggestion: Perhaps people who see him will say that he [disputes their practice and] forbids working!
Rejection: No, they will assume that he is like many other people that do not work [all year round].