THOUGHTS ON THE DAILY DAF
brought to you by Kollel Iyun Hadaf of Har Nof
Rosh Kollel: Rav Mordecai Kornfeld
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1) HALACHAH: MOVING MUKTZAH WITH DIFFERENT PARTS OF ONE'S BODY
OPINIONS: The Gemara says that (according to Rebbi Yehudah) even though it
is not permitted to move the barrels of straw and grain in a storehouse if
they were not prepared for use before Shabbos, one may nevertheless move
the barrels with one's feet as he walks in order to enter and exit. This
Gemara seems to imply that it is permitted to move Muktzah with parts of
one's body other than one's hands.
Halachically, is it permitted for a person to move Muktzah with part of his
body to get it out of his way?
(a) The SHULCHAN ARUCH (OC 311:8) rules like the ROSH (43b) who explains
that the Mishnah (141a) tells us that one may move the straw on a bed with
his elbow (or some other part of the body that is not usually used to move
such items) in order to lie down even though the straw is Muktzah. From
this the Rosh deduces that it is permissible to move Muktzah with a part of
the body other than the hands. The MISHNAH BERURAH (OC 308:13) rules like
this as well.
(b) However, the CHAZON ISH (OC 47:13) cites proof from our Gemara to the
contrary. A person may move Muktzah objects in a storehouse with his feet
while he is walking in order to enter and exit. Rashi explains that *while
he is walking*, he moves it with his foot. This implies that he may not
move the Muktzah in a *clearly intentional* act even if it is done with his
What does the Chazon Ish do with the Mishnah concerning the bed of straw?
The Chazon Ish explains, based on his interpretation of the RAMBAN (in
Milchamos there) and RAN (43b), that the Sugya there is referring to moving
the straw not directly, but indirectly by lying on the bed. The Mishnah is
then similar to our Sugya, which permits moving Muktzah while ostensibly
performing another act. The Chazon Ish asserts that this is also the
intention of the Rosh. (See Insights to Daf 141a, for more on this
(It is not clear why the Chazon Ish mentions that he argues just with the
*Mishnah Berurah*, when the Shulchan Aruch himself seems to be ruling the
same way as the Mishnah Berurah.)
(c) The RAMBAM (Hilchos Shabbos 26:15) appears to have an entirely
different understanding of our Gemara. The Gemara is not talking about
moving the Muktzah with one's foot, but smoothing the inconsistencies in
the floor with one's foot. If so, there is no proof from here that one may
move Muktzah with one's foot in any manner.
2) THE IDENTITY OF "A CERTAIN CHASID"
QUESTION: The Gemara relates an incident involving "a certain Chasid"
("Ma'aseh b'Chasid Echad") who redeemed a girl from captivity. When he and
his students were traveling back with the redeemed girl, they lodged at an
inn and the Chasid slept with the girl at his feet. In the morning, he
immersed himself in a Mikvah. His students accurately judged him favorably
when they assumed that he had immersed in order to purify himself from Keri
that occurred to him as a result of the stress of traveling. RASHI points
out that wherever the Gemara mentions "a certain Chasid," it refers to
either Rebbi Yehudah ben Bava or Rebbi Yehudah bar Rebbi Ila'i, as the
Gemara elsewhere states (Bava Kama 103b, Temurah 15b).
Why does Rashi mention this fact here, and not in the other places in the
Gemara where "a certain Chasid" is mentioned (for example, Berachos 18b)?
ANSWER: The BIRKAS HA'ZEVACH (cited in the Gilyon ha'Shas) quotes an answer
he heard from the Pnei Yehoshua. In the incident in our Gemara, the Chasid
immersed himself in a Mikvah because of Keri. Rashi was bothered by the
fact that we rule like Rebbi Yehudah ben Beseirah, who states (Berachos
22a) that there is no obligation to immerse for Keri, because "Divrei Torah
cannot become Tamei." Rashi answers that this Chasid was Rebbi Yehudah
b'Rebbi Ila'i, who maintains (ibid.) that one must immerse for Keri.
The RASHASH challenges this answer. We see in the next incident recorded in
the Gemara that Rebbi Yehoshua immersed himself before teaching Torah to
his students, since he was made Tamei by the spit of a gentile woman, which
is like the spit of a Zavah. Why did he find it necessary to go to the
Mikvah? Even a Zav/Zavah themselves are permitted to learn Torah, according
to all opinions! Only a Ba'al Keri is prohibited, according to some, from
learning Torah. Obviously, then, he must have immersed as a stringency,
beyond the letter of the law. It is logical to assume that in the previous
case as well, the Chasid immersed as a stringency. If so, that Chasid could
even have been Rebbi Yehudah ben Beseirah!.