Category Archives: Shabbat

Masechet Shabbat – the essence of Shabbat is man’s involvement

At the siyum for Tractate Shabbat yesterday I spoke about an intriguing aspect of the laws and practice of Shabbat. A few years ago I heard a shiur from a musmach of YU whose subject was Women’s learning. He quoted … Continue reading

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Shabbat 128a – What do ostriches eat?

It has been way too long… The Talmud is discussing items which may be used as food for different animals. If an object can be used as food then it can be moved on Shabbat. אף מטלטלין שברי זכוכית, מפני … Continue reading

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Shabbat 96 – Carrying on shabbat

The Talmud asks where the Melachah of Hotza’ah (carrying from one domain to another) is mentioned in the Torah. Why does the Talmud search for a verse for the Melachah of Hotza’ah? The Talmud earlier (49b) states that Hotza’ah was … Continue reading

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Shabbat 94 – Carrying a person on Shabbat

I have always found it curious that the Halakha is that we can carry a child if they refuse to walk on shabbat (in a place where there is no eiruv) as long as they are able to walk themselves. … Continue reading

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Shabbat 90 – Wrong butterfly?

I am playing catch up after a fabulous weekend celebrating my son’s Bar Mitzvah. I was learning the daf last week in my office when a colleague noticed a picture of a butterfly (daf 90a). I explained that the Koren … Continue reading

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Shabbat 81 – Zunin – whats in a name?

Whenever I come across an interesting/unusual name in the Talmud I am pleased to note that the Koren often gives us some insight into the name. On daf 81a we are told the opinion of a sage named Zunin. The … Continue reading

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Shabbat 75 – Knowledge, when is it Kosher

A fascinating piece of Talmud והלומד דבר אחד מן המגוש – חייב מיתה, והיודע לחשב תקופות ומזלות ואינו חושב – אסור לספר הימנו And one who learns [even] one matter from a magosh, [a Persian priest,] is liable [to receive the] death … Continue reading

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Shabbat 66 – First proof of Osteopathy in the Talmud?

ואמר אבין בר הונא אמר רב חמא בר גוריא: מותר לחנק בשבת And Avin bar Huna said [that] Rav Hama bar Gurya said: it is permitted to strangle, [i.e., tightly bandage the neck of one whose vertebra was dislocated in order to … Continue reading

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Shabbat 56 – Did Reuben sin?

I find the concept that the Talmud introduces today so difficult to understand. We are told several times in the Talmud that if we believe that ‘x‘ sinned (in this case Reuben and in others David HaMelech) we are mistaken. … Continue reading

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Shabbat 55 – Rebuke, even if they wont listen!

Social responsibility plays a big role in today’s daf. We are told that a householder who does not reprimand the members of his house who sin is responsible for the sin, right up to the exilarch being responsible for the … Continue reading

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