Torah Riddles Test #162

1.       Question: Why does the Pnei Yehoshua say that a person who is a mamzer (illegitimate) based on a majority is permitted because he is still only considered a questionable mamzer but though we say that orlah (a tree grown within the past 4 years) outside of Israel is permitted if we are in doubt about how old it is but if there is a majority, we treat the tree as definite orlah?


a.       The power of majority neither has the ability to make something considered definite nor is it just a doubt in reality since it seems to clarify the matter one way or because the Torah just says we rely on the majority.

b.      The halacha is that only a definite mamzer is forbidden but by orlah the halacha is that anything in doubt is permitted because it is a halacha liMoshe miSinai.

  Answer: By mamzer since the halacha is that a definite mamzer is forbidden and since a majority is not definite, the Pnei Yehoshua holds he is not a definite mamzer and is automatically permitted. But by orlah the halacha is that outside of Israel a doubt is permitted for the halacha liMoshe miSinai says that a doubt is permitted and definite is forbidden, which implies from the language that for the most part orlah in doubt is permissible, therefore since this case is a majority and not a doubt then automatically it is forbidden.