14b----------------------------------------14b

1) RECITING "V'NOCHAL MI'PIRYAH" IN THE BLESSING OF "AL HA'MICHYAH"
QUESTION: The Gemara asks why Moshe Rabeinu yearned so strongly to enter Eretz Yisrael. Certainly his motivation was not merely that he wanted to partake of its tasty fruits. This implies that one should not desire to live in Eretz Yisrael merely to eat its fruits.
However, this inference seems to contradict the text of the blessing, "Al ha'Michyah," the "Berachah me'Ein Shalosh." The text of "Al ha'Michyah" as recorded in the Halachah differs in several ways from the text which Rav Dimi taught to Abaye in the Gemara in Berachos (44a). The text in the Gemara does not include the words, "v'Nochal mi'Piryah v'Nisba mi'Tuvah" -- "and may we eat from her fruits and be satisfied from her goodness." The TUR (OC 208) quotes the text of the blessing as it appears in Berachos (without the words "v'Nochal mi'Piryah..."), but he adds that these words are included in the blessing according to the text recorded by the BEHAG. The Tur prefers that these words not be included in the blessing, because one should not ask to live in Eretz Yisrael in order to its fruits, as the Gemara here implies.
Why, then, is this phrase included in the text of the Berachah me'Ein Shalosh?
ANSWER: The BACH (OC 208) explains that the fruits of Eretz Yisrael have a special property. Since the Shechinah is most concentrated in Eretz Yisrael, its holiness is absorbed even into the fruits that grow there. By eating the fruit of Eretz Yisrael, one purifies and sanctifies his body.
Why, then, does the Gemara here say that Moshe did not want to enter Eretz Yisrael merely in order to eat its fruits? What is inappropriate with wanting to purify and sanctify oneself?
Perhaps the answer is as follows. Since the fruits of Eretz Yisrael are suffused with the holiness of the Shechinah, by eating those fruits a person strengthens his faith in Hash-m and his awe of Him. (The Gemara in Shabbos (31a) may allude to this concept when it says that Seder Zera'im corresponds to Emunah in Hash-m.) The Gemara in Berachos (33b) teaches that Moshe Rabeinu considered the fear of Hash-m to be an easy trait to acquire because, indeed, for him it was easy. Accordingly, the Gemara here asks why Moshe sought to enter Eretz Yisrael, since Moshe certainly did not need to eat of the fruits in order to acquire a greater degree of fear of Hash-m! For all others, however, it is certainly appropriate to pray to live in Eretz Yisrael in order to eat its fruits for the spiritual benefits that they impart.
2) THE "HAGASHAH" OF THE KORBAN MINCHAH
QUESTION: The Gemara cites a Machlokes Tana'im with regard to the source for the requirement to touch the Korban Minchah to the southwest corner of the Mizbe'ach. The verse (Vayikra 6:7) makes two statements about touching the Korban Minchah to the Mizbe'ach. The verse says, "Lifnei Hash-m," which implies the west side of the Mizbe'ach which faces the Heichal, and it also says, "El Pnei ha'Mizbe'ach," which implies the south side, or the front ("face") of the Mizbe'ach. The Tana Kama, who maintains that the Mizbe'ach was positioned in the center of the Azarah, explains that the only way to fulfill both phrases in the verse is to touch the Minchah to the southwest corner of the Mizbe'ach. Rebbi Elazar, who maintains that only the south side of the Mizbe'ach is located in the center of the Azarah, explains that both phrases in the verse are fulfilled when the Kohen touches the Minchah to any part of the south side of the Mizbe'ach, because the south side is both "Lifnei Hash-m" (in front of the Heichal) and "El Pnei ha'Mizbe'ach" (at the front of the Mizbe'ach). (Nevertheless, the phrase "Lifnei Hash-m" teaches that the Minchah should be placed as close as possible to the western side of the Mizbe'ach, if not on the corner itself. See SHITAH MEKUBETZES, Menachos 19:7.)
RASHI (DH Hakrev Osah) explains that according to the Tana Kama, the southwest corner is called "Lifnei Hash-m" because it is opposite the end of the outer wall of the Heichal. Rashi later (DH Kulei Mizbe'ach) explains that had the Mizbe'ach been placed just slightly more to the north, the entire southern wall of the Mizbe'ach would have been called "Lifnei Hash-m" for the same reason (since it would have been opposite the outer wall of the Heichal).
Rashi seems to contradict himself. Rashi writes (in the end of DH Hakrev Osah) that the reason why the west side of the Mizbe'ach is considered "Lifnei Hash-m" is because the wall of the Ulam -- which separates the Mizbe'ach from the Heichal -- has an opening 20 Amos wide, the same width as the Chalal (open area) inside the Heichal. Since the west side of the Mizbe'ach is opposite that opening, it is considered "Lifnei Hash-m."
Rashi implies that "Lifnei Hash-m" means that it is opposite the Chalal, the inside, of the Heichal, and the thickness of the walls of the Heichal are not included. Rashi also implies that if there would be a wall (such as the wall of the Ulam) separating the Heichal from the Mizbe'ach, the Mizbe'ach would not be called "Lifnei Hash-m." This clearly contradicts what he writes earlier (and later) that standing opposite the thickness of the walls of the Heichal is considered "Lifnei Hash-m," even though the Mizbe'ach is not opposite the opening of the Heichal, and even though the wall of the Ulam separates the Mizbe'ach from the inside of the Ulam. (RASHASH)
ANSWERS:
(a) The RASHASH suggests that had the verse said only "Lifnei Hash-m" without "El Pnei ha'Mizbe'ach," the words "Lifnei Hash-m" would have been interpreted to mean opposite the actual opening of the Heichal, and the wall is considered a separation between the opening of the Heichal and the Mizbe'ach. However, by adding "El Pnei ha'Mizbe'ach" the verse clarifies the meaning of "Lifnei Hash-m" to mean opposite any part of the Heichal, even opposite the walls of the Heichal, even if the walls of the Ulam separate the Mizbe'ach from the Heichal.
However, this approach does not fully answer the question. The comment of Rashi -- that the walls of the Ulam are not considered a separation because the Ulam has an opening 20 Amos wide -- implies that the width of the walls of the Heichal is not taken into account when the location of "Lifnei Hash-m" is determined. Moreover, the Rashash's approach does not explain the source for Rashi's assertion that "Lifnei Hash-m" would have been interpreted in a different manner had the verse not included the words "El Pnei ha'Mizbe'ach." Why does Rashi introduce this new interpretation of "Lifnei Hash-m" which is not consistent with the conclusion of the Gemara?
(b) A likely possibility is that the commentary of Rashi here (DH Hakrev Osah) contains a supplementary note (a "Hagahah") from the words "d'Ein Mafsik" until the end of the commentary. The author of this "Hagahah" expresses a different approach to the Sugya which does not conform with the rest of Rashi's explanation throughout the Gemara, but which does conform with Rashi's explanation in Zevachim (63b) and Menachos (19b).
In essence, there are two different approaches to understanding the Beraisa's interpretation of the words "Lifnei Hash-m." One approach is that "Lifnei Hash-m" refers to the place where the Minchah is brought to the Mizbe'ach. This is Rashi's approach in the Sugya here. According to this approach, the walls of the Heichal must be considered "Lifnei Hash-m" because the Minchah is brought to the corner of the Mizbe'ach which is opposite the wall of the Heichal and not opposite the opening of the Heichal. Rashi (DH Kulei) points out that according to this approach it is not clear how the Gemara knows that Rebbi Elazar maintains that the Mizbe'ach is entirely in the north; perhaps it is just slightly further to the north than the Tana Kama maintains (that is, it is slightly more to the north than the halfway point).
There is another problematic point with this approach. The ROSH (cited by the Shitah Mekubetzes) asks that the Gemara in Yoma (16b) quotes the view of Rebbi Eliezer ben Yakov who maintains that the entire Mizbe'ach is in the southern half of the Azarah. According to his opinion, no part of the southern face of the Mizbe'ach is "Lifnei Hash-m" -- opposite any part of the Heichal, neither its opening not its walls. (The southern face, according to that opinion, is sixteen Amos past the opening (to the south) of the Heichal.) The Rosh has no choice but to conclude that Rebbi Elazar Ben Yakov does not derive from the words "Lifnei Hash-m" any requirement about where the Minchah must be brought.
A third difficulty with this approach is that if the area opposite the Heichal walls is also considered "Lifnei Hash-m," the entire southern face should be considered "Lifnei Hash-m" even according to the Tana Kama (as long as the Minchah touches the Mizbe'ach at a point more than an Amah above the ground). The Mishnah in Midos teaches that the Mizbe'ach measures 32 by 32 Amos only on its foundation (Yesod), but at one Amah above the foundation it recedes an Amah on every side. Accordingly, the southern face above one Amah would be opposite the Heichal walls. (According to Rashi here, the Minchah apparently must be brought to the face of the Yesod of the Mizbe'ach since only the most southerly part of the Mizbe'ach, protruding to the south, is considered "El Pnei ha'Mizbe'ach.)
A second approach to understanding the Beraisa's interpretation of the words "Lifnei Hash-m" is presented by Rashi in Zevachim (63b) and Menachos (19b). Rashi explains that "Lifnei Hash-m" means opposite the entrance to the Heichal. (When Rashi here refers to the "Chalal," or open area, of the Heichal, which is 20 Amos wide, perhaps he means that the entrance to the Heichal is contained within those 20 Amos, and wherever that entrance is located is considered "Lifnei Hash-m," but the rest of the Chalal is not considered "Lifnei Hash-m.") If only the area opposite the entrance to the Heichal is considered "Lifnei Hash-m," why is the southwest corner considered "Lifnei Hash-m"? It is opposite the wall of the Heichal and not opposite the opening!
The answer is that "Lifnei Hash-m" does not refer to the place where the Minchah is placed. "Lifnei Hash-m" does not mean that the Minchah must be placed opposite the entrance to the Heichal. Rather, as the SHITAH MEKUBETZES in Zevachim (63:6) explains, it means that the Minchah must be placed on the side of the Mizbe'ach which is opposite the face of the Heichal. Although the Minchah may be placed further down along that side (on part of the side which is not directly opposite the Heichal), it is considered "Lifnei Hash-m" since it is placed on the same side of the Mizbe'ach which is "Lifnei Hash-m," which faces the entrance to the Heichal. This also seems to be the intention of the Shitah Mekubetzes here (DH v'Higishu).
This approach resolves the Rosh's question on the opinion of Rebbi Eliezer ben Yakov. Even according to Rebbi Eliezer ben Yakov, the west side of the Mizbe'ach is considered "Lifnei Hash-m" since it is on the same side as the entrance to the Heichal.
This approach also explains why the Gemara says that according to Rebbi Elazar, the Mizbe'ach is situated entirely in the northern half of the Azarah. It would not suffice to say that he maintains that the Mizbe'ach is merely slightly to the north. Rather, the southern wall of the Mizbe'ach must be not only opposite the walls of the Heichal, but it must be opposite the entrance to the Heichal, which begins only five Amos from the center point of the Azarah. "Kulah b'Tzafon" means that either all, or almost all, of the Mizbe'ach (up to at least the last five Amos) is in the north.
This approach also answers why the south side of the Mizbe'ach is not considered "Lifnei Hash-m" according to the Tana Kama, even the part of that side which is higher up on the Mizbe'ach where it is opposite the wall of the Heichal.
This is the approach of Rashi in Zevachim and Menachos. The words at the end of Rashi here (DH Hakrev) follow the approach of Rashi in Zevachim and Menachos, rather than the approach of the rest of Rashi in this Sugya. This is why Rashi writes that only what is opposite the opening of the Heichal is considered "Lifnei Hash-m," but the area opposite the wall of the Ulam which separates the Heichal from the Mizbe'ach is not called "Lifnei Hash-m."

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