Torah Riddles Test #29

  1. Question: What is the Chazon Ish’s psak about one who swears: “I will not eat matzo on the night of Pesach and the seven days of the holiday “?

Background:

A. The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chaim siman 485) says that if one in general swears “I will not eat matzo” he is forbidden to eat matzo on the night of Pesach. If he swears “I will not eat matzo on the first night of Pesach” he gets lashes and must eat matzo on the night of Pesach.

B. The Mishna Berura there says that as a rule if one includes in his oath something that applies to a mitzva and also does not apply to a mitzva, the oath works and he can’t even do the mitzva like in this case if he swears in general to not eat matzo even if he says this on the night of Pesach, since it includes eating matzo in general which is not a mitzva and the night of Pesach which is a mitzva, he still cannot eat matzo even for the mitzva. But in the other case since he specified not eating on the night of Pesach then we can assume he was referring specifically to not wanting to fulfill the mitzva and an oath to not fulfill a mitzva or to transgress a mitzva does not work.

 C. The Be’ur Halacha says that if one swears “I will not eat matzo the whole week of Pesach” the oath works according to most poskim, even though Pesach is mentioned explicitly because the oath is inclusive of both matzo to be eaten for non-mitzva and mitzva purposes.

Answer: The Chazon Ish (Orach Chaim 123:2) says that since he separately mentioned the night of Pesach, it is not considered an oath inclusive of permissible (non-mitzva) things, rather it is two separate oaths, one for the night of Pesach and the other for the rest of the holiday and therefore the oath does not work for the night of Pesach and he must eat matzo then for the mitzvah.

Torah Riddles Test #28

  1. Question: Rabbi Akiva Aiger asks and answers in his Responsa, first version, siman 30: Why do you make a blessing on separating Terumah even if done in one’s mind but a blessing is not said over bitul chometz, which can also be done in one’s mind?

Background:

A. The Mishna Berura 432:1:3 says that you don’t say the blessing of “al bitul chometz “ upon nullifying the chometz since the main part of the bitul is dependent on the heart and we don’t say blessings on matters that pertain to one’s heart or thoughts.

 B. After teruma is separated from fruit it is given to the kohen but in this case the teruma is separated in one’s mind and the blessing is goes on separating teruma, not the giving.

C. What is Rebbe Akiva Aiger’s answer?

Answer: The purpose of separating teruma is to give it to the kohen so even if it was separated in one’s thoughts it is as if he did something which has an action since in the end it will lead to an action, i.e. giving it to the kohen. But nullifying the chometz is completely done in one’s heart even if he verbally announces it to the world.

Torah Riddles Test #27

  1. Question: Why does one make a blessing of “al biur chometz” at the time of burning when he found chometz on Yom Tov but before Pesach we say the blessing by the checking, bedikas chometz?

Background:

 A. The Magen HaAlef (2) poskins that if one realizes on Yom Tov that he did not check for chometz before Pesach then he should check for chometz and cover it if he finds any because it is muktzah on Yom Tov and then on chol hamoed he should burn it with a blessing.

B.Normally we say the blessing and check for chometz the night before the eve of Pesach, then burn it in the morning, which is the proper time to burn the chometz, before chatzos, noonish. By chatzos all chometz is forbidden and automatically made ownerless by the Torah if you have not done it yourself by then.

 C. In normal circumstances the checking at night is considered the beginning of the mitzvah of burning and that is why the blessing is said then.

D. In both cases the checking and burning are on different days so why is the blessing said at different times?

Answer: As long as the time for burning hadn’t come yet then the checking is considered the beginning of the process of burning but once the time of burning already past and you found chometz on Yom Tov but you can’t just burn it until chol hamoed then the checking isn’t considered the beginning of the mitzvah since the time you burn has already past, so finding it is just one action and burning it is another action which just couldn’t be done earlier since it was muktzah. (See footnote 4 in Dirshu Mishna Berura 435:1:3)

Torah Riddles Test #26

  1. Question: Why do we apply the rule of “Trei mashehu lo amrinan” that little bits don’t transfer twice when it comes to foods but not when it comes to vessels like a stirring spoon?

Background:

 A. The Mishna Berura (467:9:37) says, If a ladle stirred soup that had a cracked kernel of barley found inside it on Pesach while piping hot then you use the ladle to stir another boiling hot pot it ruins all the food in the pot and the pot because since it can prohibit with even a little bit then we assume even that little bit of taste went out of the spoon and into the next pot of soup.

B. The Shaar Hatzion (67) says this only applies by a spoon transferring from liquid to liquid but if that cracked barley kernel fell on a piece of hot meat and then that hot meat got mixed up with other hot solid foods like vegetables and there is a majority to nullify its taste, then as long as you can see and take out that solid piece of meat which had the chometz absorbed in it, then everything else is permitted at least to get benefit from and even to eat if not eating it would detract from the joy of Yom Tov.

C. The Taz (17) asks why the rule that little bits of taste don’t transfer twice apply to the spoon mixing two pots of soup just as it applies to the food.

D. Food has their own tastes absorbed in it but spoons don’t have their own tastes absorbed in them.

Answer: The Dirshu Mishna Berura note 41 quotes the Elya Rabba (447:1) saying that a little bit [of taste] absorbed in a spoon is different from a little bit absorbed in a solid food substance, for when it is absorbed in food the [foreign taste] clings to it and does not get spit out again from it and therefore we can apply the rule of “trei mashehu lo amrinan” but when absorbed in a spoon, since the spoon does not have its own taste, then the [chometz taste that was absorbed] does not cling to it so it then gets spit out into the other pot [the spoon was mixing.]

Torah Riddles Test #25

  1. Question: Why is taste of chometz absorbed in food more stringent than taste of chometz absorbed in a vessel on Pesach?

Background:

A. The Rema (467:10) holds that we have a custom to burn a chicken which has a cracked kernel of wheat found in it, and you can’t leave it until after Pesach even though the physical chometz was removed and only the taste is absorbed in the chicken.

B. The Shulchan Aruch (451:1) says that any earthen ware vessels that chometz like oatmeal, which one uses throughout the year should be washed off of all physical chometz and put away until after Pesach. The Mishna Berura (2) says this applies to any other type of vessel if you don’t want to kasher them.

C. The Chazon Ish (Orach Chaim 117:15) says that technically one does not have to sell any chometz which is absorbed in vessels though he does include them in the language of his document of selling chometz as a stringency to get rid of every last bit of chometz.

D. The Chazon Ish says that really absorbed taste of chometz cannot be sold because it has no physical substance to it but since the taste can come out of the wall of the vessel it can be considered physical so he stringently sold it but Rav Elyashiv and the Shulchan Aruch HaRav both say as long as there aren’t any physical chometz on vessels they don’t have to be sold before Pesach.

E. The Chazon Ish in note 12 said that absorbed taste in a vessel is like chometz which was left in rubble which isn’t edible.

Answer: The Dirshu Mishna Berura (451:1:2:2) quoting the Chazon Ish answers that taste of chometz absorbed in food is different from taste absorbed in vessels since it is still edible in food even though it is not physically there but when eating the chicken for example it is like you would eat the chometz absorbed inside it, with it, so it should be burned according to the Rema except in extenuating circumstances.

Torah Riddles Test #24

Question: Explain the argument between Rebbe Akiva Aiger and the Ra”n on whether nullifying chometz within a majority of non-chometz is different from nullifying sheep wool in a majority of camel wool to combine it with linen and not transgress shaatnez?

Background:

A. The Teshuvas HaRan (64) says that chometz before the time of being forbidden to own is nullified in non-chometz even though it is permitted food being mixed with permitted food. It is just like a Mishna in Kilayim 9:1 which says that sheep wool and camel mixed together, if the majority is camel wool than it can be interwoven into linen and it is not shaatnez because only wool from a sheep is forbidden to be mixed with linen and camels aren’t sheep and the sheep wool is nullified to the majority of camel wool, even if it is permissible wool being mixed with permissible wool since the sheep wool isn’t intertwined with the linen yet.

B. Rebbe Akiva Aiger says the cases are incomparable because the sheep wool has a forbidden name to it to be mixed with linen so it can be nullified in the camel wool as if it is forbidden stuff being nullified in permitted stuff. Whereas chometz has no connection to prohibition whatsoever before the forbidden time on the eve of Passover.

C. What is the reason for prohibition?

Answer: Rebbe Akiva Aiger holds the reason for prohibition by chometz is time so that is why it is different from shaatnez but the Ra”n holds the reason for prohibition is the item i.e. the chometz it is just restricted by time meaning it is only prohibited on Pesach just like shaatnez where the reason for prohibition is the sheep wool but only when mixed with linen.

Torah Riddles Test #23

Question:Why does the Rambam poskin you get makkos (lashes) if your flour ferments on Pesach or if you buy chometz on Pesach because it is a prohibition done through an action but the mitzvah of don’t covet, even if it leads to convincing the other to buy the object he covets is still not considered a prohibition done through an action and hence does not receive makkos?

Background:

A. The real prohibition by chometz is owning it which is not an action (it is a state of being) and lashes are only a punishment for prohibitive actions. However since the ownership comes through an action of baking or buying then the prohibition is considered an action (Rambam first chapter of halachic Chometz u’Matza)

B. The Rambam (Hilchos gezeila vi’aveida 1:10) poskins If a person forces someone to sell him something even if he paid a lot of money for it he still transgresses the sin of “Don’t covet” but does not receive lashes because it is a sin which is not done through an action, rather it is an emotion manifested in an action of a forced sale.

Answer: The forced sale only reveals how much one covets the other person’s object so the sin really is only the emotion but by chometz the sale or baking is the actual means to be in a state of ownership of chometz therefore the sin is a direct result of the action and punishable with lashes.

Torah Riddles Test #22

  1. Question: Why would you say both the paragraphs for Shabbos and Rosh Chodesh In benching at seuda shlishit if you bentched by night fall of a Shabbos where Rosh Chodesh starts that night but if Purim is on Friday and your Purim seuda runs into Shabbos then you only say the paragraph of Shabbos and not Purim in bentching?

Background:

 A. The Mishna Berura in 188:33 says the reason you say both by a Shabbos leading into Rosh Chodesh is because the paragraph for Shabbos is going on the beginning of the meal then we say the paragraph of Rosh Chodesh (or Yom Tov) afterwards which goes on the second half of the meal. However according to that logic you should say both paragraphs when Purim goes into Shabbos?

B. There is a rabbinic concept called Tosefes Shabbos, adding on to the Shabbos before and after.

Answer: On Shabbos going into Rosh Chodesh there is actually additional minutes going into Rosh Chodesh so can say that when bentching it was for one half of the meal and then for the other half because Shabbos could have been pushed off longer to when they were ready to bentch and then it leads into Rosh Chodesh but once nightfall comes Purim is done and over, even if the meal started during the day so when bentching it is only Shabbos therefore only the paragraph of Shabbos is said. (See Dirshu Mishna Berura note 32 in 695:3:15.)

Torah Riddles Test #21

  1. Question: Why isn’t a Megillah muktzah, according to the Pri Megadim and Elya Rabba, if Shushan Purim falls out on Shabbos just as a lulav and esrog on Shabbos Sukkos or a shofar on Shabbos Rosh HaShana?

Background:

A. The Mishna Berura (688:6:15) explains the reason why they don’t read Megillah on Shabbos of Purim mishulash is because the Rabbis decreed not to lest someone will go to a sage to learn how to read it and will walk four amos in the public domain.

B. The Pri Chodosh argues and says a Megillah is muktzah on the Shabbos of Shushan Purim (mishulash) because since one cannot fulfill the mitzvah of Megillah on that day then he takes his mind away from using it and makes it muktzah in his eyes.

Answer: It is a Sefer, or scroll which people can learn from, so just like any other time of the year one can use it even in Shabbos so to on this Shabbos as well it is not muktzah and could be used if you want to look something up or learn from it. But a shofar is an instrument and a lulav has no use besides for the mitzvah so they are muktzah on Shabbos.

Torah Riddles Test #20

  1. Question: What is the difference between kilayim (grafting or planting to fruits together of different species) and cooking meat and milk together?

Background:

  1. Tosfos in Yevamos 83a says that if one runs a grape vine over his friends wheat field, since one cannot forbid(ruin halachically) something which is not his then it is not considered kilayim and everything is permitted. The Talmud Yerushalmi holds his own grapes are forbidden but his friend’s wheat are permitted.
  2. Rav Elchanan Wasserman asks on this Yerushalmi in his Kovetz Haaros (piece 549) from a case of cooking a non-shechted properly animal (neveila) in milk, where the halacha is the milk is not forbidden for since cooking milk and meat does not apply to a neveila (non-kosher animal) because one prohibition can’t be stacked on a another prohibition, so so to the milk is also not forbidden, for since the prohibition of cooking milk and meat come from both sides combined and one side is not prohibited so the other side is also no prohibited.
  3. If that is the case that should be true by the forbidden mixture f kilayim, if one is not prohibited the other one should not become prohibited as well, question on the Yerushalmi?!
  4. Milk and meat create a new entity
  5. Or (a second answer) there is a difference between the concepts of “no prohibition can stack on another prohibition” vs. “a person can’t forbid something which is not his.”

Answer: . (1) Milk and meat when mixed prohibitively become a new entity so they are either both prohibited as a new entity or both permitted because they never really mixed. (2) Rav Elchanan’s answer was that the axiom “a person can’t forbid something which is not his” (ein adam oser davar she’eino shelo) only applies to his friend but that does not mean his own thing can’t be negatively affected. But the axiom “no prohibition can stack on another prohibition” (ein issur chal al issur) dictates that if the second prohibition can’t go into effect because of the first prohibition then it does go into effect at all, even to affect the milk.