THOUGHTS ON THE DAILY DAF
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Rosh Kollel: Rav Mordecai Kornfeld
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CHAGIGAH 2 - dedicated in honor of the birth of Yehonasan Copperman, by his
grandparents in Yerushalayim. May Hashem grant that he grow up to be a true
Yerei Shamayim and Talmid Chacham.
1) THE MEANING OF "RE'IYAH"
QUESTION: The Mishnah says that "everyone is obligated in Re'iyah" except for
the exceptions that it lists. RASHI explains that "Re'iyah" means to appear
in the Azarah during the festival.
2) WALKING FROM YERUSHALAYIM TO HAR HA'BAYIS
However, the end of the Mishnah uses the word "Re'iyah" to refer to the
Korban that is brought upon coming to the Azarah during the festival (the
Olas Re'iyah). Why, then, does Rashi explain that the word "Re'iyah" in the
beginning of the Mishnah refers to something different -- to the obligation
to appear in the Azarah during the festival? Rashi should have explained that
it refers to the obligation to bring a Korban Re'iyah on the festival!
(TOSFOS DH ha'Kol)
ANSWER: The Mishnah continues and says that a Katan is not obligated in the
Mitzvah of Re'iyah if he is not able to go from Yerushalayim to Har ha'Bayis
riding on his father's shoulders (according to Beis Shamai) or holding his
father's hand (according to Beis Hillel). This implies that if he is able to
walk (or ride, according to Beis Shamai), then even a Katan is obligated in
Re'iyah. However, RASHI (DH Beis Shamai) says that only an adult is required
to bring a *Korban* Re'iyah. That is, there is no Mitzvah of Chinuch to have
the child bring a Korban Re'iyah, since mid'Oraisa the Katan is not obligated
to bring such a Korban and cannot sanctify an animal to be brought as such a
Korban. Therefore any animal he brings for a Korban Re'iyah would constitute
bringing a non-sanctified animal into the Azarah.)
That is why Rashi explains that the Mishnah's statement, "Everyone is
obligated in Re'iyah," refers to the Mitzvah of appearing in the Azarah.
Hence, when the Mishnah continues and says that a Katan who is old enough to
go from Yerushalayim to Har ha'Bayis is obligated, it means that he is
obligated to *appear in the Azarah* -- but not to bring a Korban. (This also
appears to be the intention of Tosfos, end of DH Eizheu, when he explains
what Rashi means to say. See also TUREI EVEN, 6a DH Eizehu.)
TOSFOS (DH Eizehu) argues with Rashi and says that a Katan is obligated to
bring even a Korban Re'iyah because of Chinuch. (He actually brings a Korban
Nedavah, and he brings it the following day, on Chol ha'Mo'ed, and not on Yom
Tov itself. In addition, he does not perform Semichah with the animal, since
a Katan cannot do Semichah.)
Tosfos is consistent with his opinion earlier (in DH ha'Kol Chayavin), where
he says that when the Mishnah mentions "Re'iyah," it means not just going to
the Azarah, but bringing the Korban as well. Thus, when the words of the
Mishnah later imply that a Katan old enough to walk is obligated, it is
referring to the obligation to bring a Korban, and that is why Tosfos says
that a Katan must bring a Korban for Chinuch.
QUESTION: The Mishnah states that according to Beis Shamai, a Katan is exempt
from Re'iyah if he is not old enough to ride on his father's shoulders "from
Yerushalayim to Har ha'Bayis." According to Beis Hillel, a Katan is exempt if
he is not old enough to hold his father's hand and walk "from Yerushalayim to
Har ha'Bayis." RASHI explains that if the child cannot walk by himself, then
he is exempt because had he been a Gadol (an adult) and not able to walk, he
would have been exempt, and thus he is exempt as a child in that state.
3) A HALF-SLAVE
OPINIONS: The Gemara concludes that when the beginning of the Mishnah states
that "everyone is obligated in Re'iyah," its intention is to *include* a
person who is half-slave and half-free in the obligation of Re'iyah.
RASHI (DH u'Mi sh'Eino) explains that a Gadol is exempt from the Mitzvah of
going to the Azarah on the festival if he cannot walk "from Yerushalayim to
the *Azarah*." Rashi does not say "to Har ha'Bayis" as the Mishnah says, but
rather he says "to the *Azarah*." Rashi is certainly correct -- "Aliyah
l'Regel" does not mean going only to Har ha'Bayis. One must go into the
Azarah in order to fulfill the Mitzvah, because the Azarah is considered
"before Hashem" (Shemos 23:17), while Har ha'Bayis is not considered "before
Hashem" (Chagigah 7a).
Why, then, does the Mishnah say that the Katan must be able to go from
Yerushalayim to *Har ha'Bayis*? Since the Mitzvah is to go to the Azarah, the
Mishnah should say that the Katan must be able to walk from Yerushalayim to
the *Azarah* and not just to Har ha'Bayis in order to be obligated! (TOSFOS
(a) The TOSFOS YOM TOV answers that the difficult part of the trip is the
climb from Yerushalayim to Har ha'Bayis, which was a steep incline that had
no stairs. Once one came to Har ha'Bayis, there were stairs leading to the
Azarah (as the Mishnah describes in Midos), and from there it was an easy
walk to the Azarah. If the child could make it to Har ha'Bayis, then he
certainly could make it to the Azarah.
(b) RASHI later (4b, DH Mefanki) says that in order to be obligated in
Re'iyah, a person must be able to walk up Har ha'Bayis without shoes, since
it is prohibited to go into Har ha'Bayis while wearing shoes (Berachos 54a).
Accordingly, perhaps the Mishnah says that one must be able to walk to "Har
ha'Bayis" in order to remind us of the unique Halachah that applies to all of
Har ha'Bayis and affects the age of Aliyah l'Regel. It is emphasizing that a
Katan is obligated only if he can walk with his father *without* shoes to the
Azarah, since the Azarah is atop Har ha'Bayis, upon which shoes may not trod.
According to Beis Shamai (who maintains that even before the Katan can walk
he is obligated in Re'iyah, as long as he can ride on his father's
shoulders), the Mishnah mentions Har ha'Bayis to say that the Katan is
obligated only if his *father* is able to go without shoes while carrying him
from Yerushalayim on his shoulders. (Even though another person could take
the child up Har ha'Bayis if the father cannot, no one else is obligated to
do so since the obligation of Chinuch rests solely on the father's shoulders,
and it is not the *child's* obligation to go up, as Rashi implies.) (M.
(c) The OR SAME'ACH (Hilchos Beis ha'Bechirah 6:10) writes that according to
the YERUSHALMI, it seems that the distance one must be able to walk in order
to be obligated in Re'iyah is not a relative figure, but a set distance, no
matter where the person is leaving from.If so, he suggests, since the Azarah
can be extended to all parts of Har ha'Bayis (but not more, as the Rambam
there implies), the distance that one must be able to walk was established to
be from Yerushalayim to Har ha'Bayis. Walking this distance reflects the
maturity of the child, and shows whether he has reached the point at which he
begins to be obligated in this Mitzvah. (However, the Or Same'ach points out
that our Gemara (6a) seems to argue with this understanding of the Mishnah.)
The Mishnah a few lines later lists "slaves who are not free" among those who
are *exempt* from Re'iyah. Ravina infers from those words that the Mishnah is
referring to a person who is half-slave and half-free, and that is why it
adds the extra words "slaves *who are not free*."
How can the words of the Mishnah teach at the same time that a half-slave is
obligated in Re'iyah, and that a half-slave is exempt from Re'iyah?
The Gemara answers that one statement of the Mishnah was said according to
the Mishnah Rishonah, the earlier ruling which stated that a half-slave must
serve his master for one day, and serve himself the next day, in an
alternating fashion. The other statement of the Mishnah was said according to
the Mishnah Acharonah, the later ruling which changes the first ruling and
states that the master is obligated to free his half-slave. Which parts of
the Mishnah refer to the earlier and later rulings, respectively?
(a) RASHI, TOSFOS, and most other Rishonim say that when the words in the
middle of the Mishnah state that a half-slave is exempt, they are following
the Mishnah *Rishonah*, which ruled that a half-slave remains a slave (albeit
only half of the time). A half-slave is exempt according to the Mishnah
Rishonah since he retains the status of a slave.
The words at the beginning of the Mishnah, which teach that a half-slave is
obligated in Re'iyah, are following the Mishnah *Acharonah*, which states
that the master is obligated to free his half-slave. Consequently, he is
considered to be free now and thus he is obligated in Re'iyah. Even though
the Gemara in Gitin (42b) does not answer its question of whether a half-
slave (according to the Mishnah Acharonah) is considered the legal property
of the master (and may eat Terumah if the master is a Kohen) or not, that
question applies only insofar as a Kinyan is concerned. The legal ownership
of the half-slave does not affect the Halachah here, which depends on whether
or not the person has any other master over him other than Hashem. As far as
the obligation of Re'iyah is concerned, this half-slave is considered *not*
to have any other master over him, since the master cannot tell him what to
do since he is obligated to give him his contract of release.
According to this explanation, the order of the Mishnah is not
chronologically correct order. The *beginning* of the Mishnah is stating the
Halachah according to the Mishnah *Acharonah*, while the *later* part of the
Mishnah is stating the Halachah of the Mishnah Rishonah.
(b) The RAMBAM explains that the beginning of the Mishnah is following the
Mishnah *Rishonah*, and according to the Mishnah Rishonah, a half-slave is
*obligated* in Re'iyah, since the master is *not* obligated to set him free
(the reasoning behind this will be explained shortly). The second part of the
Mishnah is following the Mishnah Acharonah. Since, according to the Mishnah
Acharonah, the master is required to free the half-slave, the half-slave is
*not* obligated in Re'iyah.
What is the logic behind this? Why is there more reason to obligate the half-
slave in Re'iyah if the master does *not* have to free him?
1. The KESEF MISHNAH (Hilchos Korban Pesach 2:13) explains that the Mishnah
Rishonah maintains that since the half-slave must remain with that status
(and the master is not required to free him), a compromise was made by the
Rabanan so that the days are split between serving the master and serving
himself. As a result of this compromise, every other day the servant serves
himself and is considered a completely free man and is not subjugated to his
master at all.
In contrast, according to the Mishnah Acharonah which requires the master to
free his half-slave, there is no reason to make a compromise. Since he is
going to be freed, he retains the status of a slave until he is freed. Thus,
before he is actually freed, there is no time at which he is not subjugated
to his master, and that is why he is exempt from the Mitzvah of Re'iyah (and
2. Although the answer of the Kesef Mishnah explains the rulings of the
Rambam in the Mishnah Torah (Hilchos Korban Pesach loc. cit., and Hilchos
Chagigah 2:1), the wording of the Rambam in PERUSH HA'MISHNAYOS (Pesachim
8:1) seems to conflict with this view. The Rambam writes there that according
to the Mishnah Acharonah (which requires the master to free his half-slave),
since the Rabanan do not permit him to remain a half-slave and thus his
freedom is imminent, they do not let him eat the Korban Pesach or bring the
Korban Re'iyah until he is freed completely.
It seems from the words of the Rambam there that the reason the half-slave is
not obligated to bring a Korban is because the master must free him.
According to the previous approach, though, the half-slave's exemption has
nothing to do with the fact that the master has to free him, but rather he is
exempt because he retains the official status of a slave.
The KESEF MISHNAH (loc. cit.) suggests that according to the Rambam in Perush
ha'Mishnayos, perhaps a different line of reasoning is involved: In truth, a
half-slave is *obligated* mid'Oraisa to bring the Korban Re'iyah, because the
half of himself which is not a slave has no other master other than Hashem.
However, the Rabanan decreed that he is exempt and that he may not bring the
Korban (which they have the prerogative to do since it is "Shev v'Al
Ta'aseh") in order to provide an incentive for him to seek his freedom.
(According to this explanation, it is the slave that has to be encouraged to
be freed. The slave prefers to be a slave and have someone take care of all
of his needs. Therefore, the Rabanan gave the slave an incentive to seek his
freedom by decreeing that he may not bring his Korban Re'iyah or Korban
Pesach until he becomes completely free. On the other hand, the Rabanan did
not force the master to free the slave, because the slave is able to force
the master to free him by bringing him to Beis Din whenever he wants.)
3. RAV AVRAHAM BEN HA'RAMBAM (cited by the Kesef Mishnah) suggests an answer
which not only explains the logic behind the Rambam's understanding of the
Gemara, but which also reconciles the Rambam's explanation in Perush
ha'Mishnayos with his explanation in Mishnah Torah: In truth, a half-slave is
exempt mid'Oraisa from Re'iyah and from Korban Pesach. Thus, even when the
master is obligated to free him (the Mishnah Acharonah), he is exempt, since
he is still a slave.
However, according to the Mishnah Rishonah which rules that a half-slave
remains so indefinitely, since his state is a permanent one, the Rabanan
instituted that he may bring the Korban Re'iyah and Korban Pesach.
This answer seems very problematic, for how could the Rabanan give him a
rabbinical obligation to bring a Korban, when he is exempt mid'Oraisa! We are
not allowed to be stringent at the expense of bringing non-sanctified animals
into the Azarah! (LECHEM MISHNAH, Hilchos Chagigah 2:1)
The Lechem Mishnah explains that Rav Avraham means that the Rabanan were
Mafkir the side owned by the master (through the authority of "Hefker Beis
Din Havi Hefker") in order to obligate the person in the Mitzvah, but they
were not Mafkir the master's partial ownership of him with regard to his
obligation to serve his master. Thus, he is still required to obey his master
on his master's day, and to do whatever he tells him to do. In that respect,
he is still a slave. The Rabanan made him free with regard to bringing
Korbanos that require him to be free.