WHERE THE KOHANIM GUARD
(Mishnah): Kohanim guard in three places in the Beis ha'Mikdash -- in Beis Avtinas, Beis ha'Nitzotz, and Beis ha'Moked;
Leviyim guard in 21 places -- the five gates of Har ha'Bayis, the four inside corners, the five gates of the Azarah, the four outside corners, Lishkas ha'Korban (where Temidim were kept, or where they would check animals for Mumim), Lishkas ha'Paroches (where they would weave Parochos), and in back of the Kodesh ha'Kodoshim.
Question: What is the source of this?
Answer (Rav Yehudah of Sura): "La'Mizrach ha'Leviyim Shishah la'Tzefonah la'Yom Arba'ah la'Negbah la'Yom Arba'ah vela'Asufim Shenayim Shenayim; La'Parbar la'Ma'arav Arba'ah la'Mesilah Shenayim la'Parbar."
Question: The verse lists 24 guards!
(Partial) answer #1 (Abaye): "Vela'Asufim Shenayim Shenayim" means that for the two added chambers there were a total of two guards (Rosh; Mefaresh - we do not expound the repetition of "Shenayim." The word is doubled because it ends the verse.)
Question: Still, this leaves 22!
Answer: Of the last two Leviyim counted for Parbar, only one guarded. The other merely accompanied the guard, because this was outside, far from the other guards.
Question: What is "la'Parbar"?
Answer (Rabah bar Rav Shila): It means "Klapei Bar" (facing out).
Answer #2: Really, there are 24 places. The verse includes the three places that Kohanim guard;
(R. Yehoshua ben Levi): In 24 verses, Kohanim are called Leviyim. One of them is "veha'Kohanim ha'Leviyim Bnei Tzadok."
(Mishnah):... At the four inside corners (of Har ha'Bayis)... at the four outside corners (of the Azarah).
Question: Why do they guard Har ha'Bayis from the inside, and the Azarah from the outside?
Answer: We prefer to guard from the inside. This is possible in Har ha'Bayis, for if the guard tires, he may sit;
We do not guard in the Azarah, for one may not sit there;
Only kings from the House of David may sit in the Azarah.
(Mishnah): (They guard at) the five gates of the Azarah.
Contradiction (Mishnah #1): There are seven gates to the Azarah. Three in the north, three in the south, and one in the east.
Answer #1 (Abaye): Two of the seven gates need not be guarded. (Rosh - the middle gates in the north and south are guarded (automatically) by those guarding the outer gates. Mefaresh - Leviyim need not guard the gates of Beis ha'Moked and Beis ha'Nitzotz, for Kohanim guard them.)
Answer #2 (Rava): Tana'im argue about the number of gates to the Azarah:
(Beraisa): We must have at least 13 Gizbarim (overseers of Hekdesh) and seven Amarkelim (appointed over the Gizbarim);
R. Nasan says, we need at least 13 Gizbarim for the 13 gates.
Summation of answer: There are five gates of Har ha'Bayis. Therefore R. Nasan holds that there are eight gates to the Azarah. He surely argues with the Tana (of Mishnah #1) who says that there are seven;
Likewise, we can say that the Tana of our Mishnah argues, and says that there are five!
BENEFITING FROM BIGDEI KEHUNAH
(Mishnah): They would not sleep in Bigdei Kehunah...
Inference: They would not sleep in Bigdei Kehunah, but they would walk in them (to where they would sleep);
This shows that Kohanim may benefit from Bigdei Kehunah (even not for the sake of the Avodah)!
Rejection: No, it is forbidden even to walk in them (Rosh - outside the Azarah);
The Mishnah says that they would not sleep in them for parallel structure to the Seifa, which says that they would fold them and put them under their heads.
Question: If they put them under their heads, this shows that one may benefit from them!
Answer: It means that they would put them near their heads.
Inference (Rav Papa): This shows that one may sleep next to Tefilin:
We are not concerned lest Kohanim roll over onto the Bigdei Kehunah (and benefit from them). Likewise, we are not concerned lest one roll over onto his Tefilin.
Support: Presumably, this is correct (that the Bigdei Kehunah were near, but not under, their heads). Even if they may benefit from Bigdei Kehunah, Kil'ayim is forbidden (except needs of Avodah)!
According to the opinion that the Avnet (belt) of regular Kohanim was (pure linen,) unlike that of the (eight garments of the) Kohen Gadol (i.e. which was Sha'atnez), we could say that they slept on them. (Some texts say 'like that of the Kohen Gadol', i.e. the four linen garments he wears in the Kodesh ha'Kodoshim on Yom Kipur. This is essentially like our text. Likewise, those texts read "unlike that of the Kohen Gadol" in the next clause.)
According to the opinion that a regular Kohen's Avnet was (Sha'atnez) like that of the Kohen Gadol, we cannot say that they slept on them!
Suggestion: One may be on top of Sha'atnez. It is forbidden only to wear it or have it on oneself!
Rejection (Beraisa): "Lo Ya'aleh Alecha", but (mid'Oraisa) one may spread Sha'atnez under himself;
However, Chachamim forbade this, lest a strand of the Sha'atnez bend and come upon his flesh.
Suggestion: Perhaps Chachamim permit when a garment is between the person and the Sha'atnez!
Rejection (R. Shimon ben Pazi): One may not sit over Sha'atnez, even if ten mattresses are in between.
Conclusion: Surely, the Bigdei Kehunah were next to their heads.
Rejection #1: Perhaps the other Bigdei Kehunah (without Sha'atnez) were under their heads!
Rejection #2 (Rav Ashi): Bigdei Kehunah are hard. (Rosh - every strand is six-fold. Chachamim did not forbid hard Sha'atnez under a person, we are not concerned lest a strand bend. Mefaresh - they do not give benefit (warmth), therefore they are permitted even above a person.)
(Rav Huna brei d'Rav Yehoshua): Hard felt garments (of Sha'atnez) from Narash (a certain place) are permitted. (Some delete the following, until the next citation from the Mishnah.)
(Beraisa): One may not wear Bigdei Kehunah outside the Mikdash;
Inside the Mikdash it is permitted, whether or not the Kohen is serving at the time, for the Torah allows benefit from Bigdei Kehunah.
Question: Is it really forbidden to wear Bigdei Kehunah outside the Mikdash?!
(Beraisa): We do not eulogize on the 21st of Teves. This is Yom Har Grizim;
Alexander Mokdon had authorized the Kusim to destroy the Beis ha'Mikdash. Shimon ha'Tzadik heard. He wore the Bigdei Kehunah and went to greet Alexander. When Alexander saw him, he bowed to him. He agreed to spare the Mikdash, and permitted Shimon ha'Tzadik to do as he pleased to the Kusim.
Answer #1: Shimon ha'Tzadik wore clothes Kosher to be Bigdei Kehunah (but they were not yet Hekdesh).
Answer #2: "Es La'asos la'Shem." (In such a case, it is proper to transgress l'Shem Shamayim.)
MODESTY IN THE BATHROOM
(Mishnah): If one of the Kohanim saw Keri (he goes through the tunnels)...
This supports (the first of the next two teachings of) R. Yochanan;
(R. Yochanan): The tunnels have no Kedushah (except for those under the Azarah which open to the Azarah);
A Ba'al Keri must leave two Machanos (Machaneh Shechinah and Machaneh Levi).
(Mishnah): Lamps were burning on each side...
Rav Safra was in the bathroom. R. Aba snorted (to see if anyone was inside). Rav Safra told him to enter.
Version #1 (our text, Mefaresh) R. Aba: You never went to Se'ir (Edom). Where did you acquire immodest conduct in the bathroom?! (You should have snorted back, so I would know not to enter!)
(Mishnah): If he saw the Beis ha'Kisei locked, he knew that someone was inside. (This sign was used because it is improper to talk in a Beis ha'Kisei!)
Rav Safra talked because he feared that if R. Aba would go away, the delay before eliminating could endanger him!
Version #2 (R Gershom) Rav Safra: You never went to Se'ir. Where did you acquire immodest conduct in the bathroom?! (It was locked, you should have gone away!)
(Mishnah): If he saw the Beis ha'Kisei locked, he knew that someone was inside.
Even so, Rav Safra told him to enter, lest R. Aba would be in danger! (end of Version #2)
(Beraisa - R. Shimon ben Gamliel): If excrement starts to leave the body and returns (Rosh; Mefaresh - if one delays eliminating when he needs to), this causes Hidrokan (swelling of the stomach);
If one does not urinate when he must, this can cause jaundice.
Rav (to his son Chiya): (Strive to) eliminate at the beginning of the night and before morning, so you will not have to go during the day (when you must distance yourself further, for many people are around. The delay could cause Hidrokan);
Sit before you uncover yourself, and cover yourself before getting up;
Rinse a cup before drinking from it (lest it contains saliva from the last person who drank from it) and after you drink (perhaps the next one to drink will not rinse it first);
After you drink water, pour some water over the side (so your saliva will leave) before giving to your Talmidim. (They might be reluctant to pour out from what you drank.)
(Beraisa): One who drank water should not give to his Talmid without pouring some over the side. This was enacted due to the following episode.
A Rebbi gave his cup (without pouring out) to his Talmid who was very particular. The Talmid did not want to pour out in front of his Rebbi, nor would he drink without pouring out. He died of thirst.
(Rav Ashi): Therefore, if a Talmid pours out in front of his Rebbi, this is not Apikorsus (insolence to his Rebbi).
Do not spit out in front of your Rebbi, except for gourds or porridge, for swallowing saliva due to them harms the body like lead.