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2018-09-19 is
Menachot 40
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UNEDITED DRAFT of Kiddushin Daf 34

Submitted by Andrew M. Greene on 2008-08-15Z02:22:34.193006

[The Mishnah had said]: “All mitzvot of ‘Thou shalt’ that are caused by a [specific] time…”

The Rabbis taught:

Q: Which are the “Thou shalt” commandments that are caused by time?

A: Sukkah and lulav, shofar, and tzitzit and tefillin.

Q: And which are “Thou shalt” commandments that are not caused by time?

A: Mezuzah, a fence [on one’s roof], [returning] a lost object, and sending away [the mother bird] from the nest [before taking the eggs].

[These are both challenged by bringing exceptions.] Is that a general rule?

For behold: Matzah, rejoicing [at the festivals], and assembling [in the Sabbatical year] — these are “Thou shalt” commandments that are caused by time, yet women are obligated!

And behold: Study of Torah, being fruitful and multiplying, and redemption of the [firstborn] son — these are “Thou shalt” commandments that are not caused by time, yet women are exempt!

Rabbi Yochanan said: We do not learn from general rules, even in a place where it [explicitly] says “except for” [You might assume that if a list of exceptions are given, that proves that there exists a general rule. For example,] we learned “With all [foods] we make eruvin and we make shetafin except [we may not make them] from water or salt.” But are there no others? For there are truffles and mushrooms! [Those are also exceptions, but they are not explicitly listed in the Mishnah. Even though the mishna says “with all foods” and goes on to list exceptions, the list of exceptions is not exhaustive and we cannot posit a general rule.] Rather, we do not learn from general rules, even in a place where it [explicitly] says “except for”.

***

[Our mishnah said:] “And mitzvot of ‘Thou shalt’ that are caused by time: women are exempt.”

From where [do we learn this]? It is derived from tefillin: Just as with tefillin, in which women are exempt, so too with all “Thou shalt” commandments which are caused by time, women are exempt.

And tefillin is derived, itself, from study of Torah: Just as with study of Torah, in which women are exempt, so too with tefillin, women are exempt.

[An objection is raised.] Let us compare tefillin to mezuzah [instead of to Torah study, since women are obligated to affix the mezuzah]. [The response:] Tefillin is compared to the study of Torah both in the first paragraph and the second paragraph [of the Shema]; tefillin is not compared to mezuzah in the second paragraph [but only in the first]. [Objection:] Then let us compare mezuzah to the study of Torah [from which women are exempt, and deduce that women are also exempt from mezuzah] [Response:] Do not let that enter your mind! For it is written [in Devarim 11]: “[inscribe them on the dorrposts of your house and of your gates,] in order that you may increase your days.” [By suggestion that women should be exempt from the commandment of mezuzah, you imply that while] men need [to prolong] their lives, women do not need [to prolong] their lives?!?!

[Another challenge: If we really have the general rule that women are exempt from “Thou shalt” commandments that are caused by time, then why do we have a specific exemption for them in the case of dwelling in the sukkah?] But behold: [dwelling in the] sukkah is a “Thou shalt” commandment that time causes, as it is written: “In sukkot you shall dwell for seven days; [all the natives of Israel shall dwell in sukkot.]” The reason that the Merciful One wrote “the natives is to exclude the women.” [cf Sukkot 28a]. If it were not for this, women would be obligated!

[Response:] Abbaye said: It is necessary [to have an explicit exemption, because] it might have entered your mind to [make an exception in this case from the general rule, and] say: Since it is written “in sukkot you shall dwell”, [we might assume this means] “you shall dwell” similarly to how you live [usually]. Just as at home a man [dwells] with his wife, so too in a sukkah, [I might think] a man and his wife [are commanded to dwell together].

Rava [has another reason why you might mistakenly assume that women are obligated to dwell in the sukkah. He] says [34b]: It is necessary [to exempt women explicitly, since] it might have entered your mind to say: Let us learn from [a gezera shava on] “the fifteenth” [here and] “the fifteenth” from the Festival of Matzot: Just as there, women are obligated, so too here, women are obligated. [Therefore], it is necessary [to exempt women explicitly.]

[Another challenge:] But behold: Appearing [at the pilgrimage festivals] is a “Thou shalt” commandment that time causes, [and yet women are explicitly exempted] And the reason that the Merciful One wrote “your males” [in Deut. 16, “Three times a year all your males shall appear before Hashem your God”] is to exclude the women. If it were not for this, women would be obligated!

It is necessary [to provide an explicit exemption]; you might have thought to say: let us learn from “appearing” [here and] “appearing” from assembling [in the Sabbatical year]. [Again, since you might have found a mistaken justification for obligating women, their implicit exemption based on the general rule has to be made explicit.]


[Now the Gemara will try, unsuccessfully, to prove by various means that women actually should be obligated in “Thou shalt” commandments that are caused by time.]

But rather than learning [that when it comes to “Thou shalts” that are caused by time, women have, a general] exemption, based on tefillin, let us learn [instead that they have a general] obligation based on [the commandment of] rejoicing [on the festivals]. Abaye said, “A woman? Her husband causes her to rejoice.” [He therefore puts the commandment on the man. But we object to Abaye in the case of] a widow: what is there to say? [The commandment applies to] of one who dwells with a man [as head of the household]

[Another attempt] But let us learn from assembling [in the Sabbatical year, in which women are obligated. This attempt is refuted. We cannot learn it this way] because matzah and assembling are “two writings that come as one”, and all [cases] of “two writings that come as one” do not teach [a general principle].

[The gemara will now try to understand the scope of the rule that “two writings that come as one do not teach” a general principle]

If so, [if there really is such a rule, then how can we derive the general exempion for women from “Thou shalt” commandments that time causes?] tefillin and appearing [on the pilgrimages] are also “two writings that come as one” and do not teach [a general principle].

[The response:] It is necessary [to teach both of these explicitly], for if the Merciful One had written [women’s exemption from] tefillin, and had not written [women’s exemption from] appearing, I would have said “We should learn [that women are obligated in] ‘appearing’ [based on the same word] ‘appearing’ in [the case of] assembling.” And if the Merciful One had written [women’s exemption from] appearing, and had not written [women’s exemption from] tefillin, I would have said “I should compare tefillin to mezuzah.” [Therefore], it is necessary [to teach both cases explicitly, and they are not an example of “two writings that come as one.”]

[The challenge resumes:] If so, matzah and assembling are both necessary [and therefore, since they are two separate teachings, they provide the basis for a general rule].

[The response:] For what [do you claim] they are necessary? It’s understandable: If the Merciful One had written [that women are obligated in] assembling, but had not written [that women are obligated in] matzah, I would have said, “We should learn [by comparing] ‘the fifteenth’ [of Nisan with] ‘the fifteenth’ from the Festival of Sukkot.” But, let the Merciful One write [about women’s obligation in] matzah, and not require assembling, and I would say “[Since I know that] dependent children are obligated [in both], women – [are they] not all the more so?” Therefore, [since only teaching the case of matzah would have let me derive the rule of assembly by a kal vachomer argument], these are two writings that come as one, and do not teach [a general rule].

That is correct, according to the one who said “[two writings that come as one] do not teach [a general rule].” But [that is not a universally held position.] According to the one who said they do teach [a general rule from two writings that come as one], what is there to say? [Such a position would mean that, since women’s obligation in both matzah and assembly have been stated, we would be able to derive a general obligation for women in “Thou shalt” commandments that are caused by time.]


[Moving on to the other case:] And, also, “Thou shalt” commandments that are not caused by time, [the law is that] women are obligated. From where [do we know this]? It is derived from fearing [parents]: Just as in fearing, women are obligated, so too in all “Thou shalt” commandments that are not caused by time, women are obligated.

But let us learn from the study of Torah! [That is a “Thou shalt” commandment which is not caused by time, and women are exempt from it.]

[We cannot derive a general rule from the study of Torah,] because the study of Torah and being fruitful and multiplying are two writings that come as one, and all [cases of] two writings that come as one do not teach [a general rule].


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