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Sukah 3

SUKAH 3 - Mrs. Rachelle Potack with Marsha and Larry Wachsman are dedicating this Daf in friendship and support of the Dafyomi Advancement Forum and Dafyomi study.


OPINIONS: The Gemara asks a question from a Beraisa on the Amora'im who explain the argument between Rebbi Yehudah and the Rabanan in our Mishnah regarding a Sukah that is 20 Amos tall. In the Beraisa Rebbi Yehudah brings a proof to his opinion that such a tall Sukah is not Pasul from an incident involving the queen Hilni. Hilni and her seven sons were sitting in a Sukah that was more than 20 Amos tall when the elders came to visit her, and they said nothing about the Sukah. It must be that such a Sukah is valid. The Rabanan respond that Hilni's Sukah was indeed Pasul, and the reason why the elders did not say anything about it to her was because a woman is exempt from the Mitzvah of Sukah, and her sons were not yet old enough to be obligated in Mitzvos. Rebbi Yehudah retorts that Hilni certainly had a son who was old enough to be required to do Mitzvos for the sake of Chinuch, and if so Hilni certainly would have made a valid Sukah for him. It must be that a 20-Amah tall Sukah *is* valid.

The Gemara explains that according to Rav Yoshiyah (in the opinion of Rabah) -- who said that Rebbi Yehudah and the Rabanan argue only when the walls of the tall Sukah do not reach the Sechach -- the Beraisa is not problematic, because it is the custom of queens to sit in such a Sukah to enjoy the flow of fresh air, and that is why the Rabanan and Rebbi Yehudah were arguing whether Hilni's Sukah was Pasul or not. However, the Beraisa is problematic according to Rav Huna and Rav Chanan bar Rabah who explain that the argument between the Rabanan and Rebbi Yehudah applies only to a very small Sukah (such as one that is only seven by seven Tefachim) which is 20 Amos tall. Certainly, a queen would not sit in such a small Sukah. It must be that she was sitting in a very wide Sukah, and yet we still see that the Rabanan and Rebbi Yehudah argue! The Gemara answers that Hilni had a very large Sukah, but she was sitting in a narrow subsection of the Sukah with her sons, and it was that part of the Sukah which the Rabanan and Rebbi Yehudah argued about in the Beraisa.

(a) Rashi points out that this answer will not suffice to justify the opinion of Rav Chanan bar Rabah, who said (2b) that the Rabanan permit a tall Sukah as long as its length and width are large enough to fit a person's head, most of his body, and his table (which is seven by seven Tefachim). Certainly Hilni's subsection Sukah was not that small, because how is it possible to fit seven sons and their mother all in an area that is only seven by seven Tefachim? It must be that the Rabanan and Rebbi Yehudah in the Beraisa are arguing about a Sukah which larger than seven by seven, which contradicts Rav Chanan bar Rabah's opinion! Rashi concludes that the Beraisa is indeed difficult according to Rav Chanan bar Rabah.

(b) TOSFOS answers that even according to Rav Chanan bar Rabah, Hilni's Sukah would have been Pasul according to the Rabanan. Even though it certainly is not talking about a Sukah which was only seven *by seven* Tefachim (which would not fit Hilni and her sons), perhaps Hilni and her sons sat in a *long and narrow* subsection of the Sukah. If that compartment was less than seven Tefachim wide, it could be any length at all, and still remain invalid.

It appears that Rashi and Tosfos argue about the definition of the dimensions of a small Sukah. Rashi understands that the Shi'ur of "seven Tefachim by seven Tefachim" (Gemara 16b and Rashi 4b, 16a) describes the minimum *area* of a kosher Sukah. As long as the Sukah's area is equal to the area of a seven by seven Sukah (49 square Tefachim), then it is valid, such as a Sukah which is 3 Tefachim long by 16 1/3 Tefachim wide. Therefore, a mother and seven children can never fit into a minimally sized Sukah.

Tosfos, on the other hand, maintains that when the Gemara says that a Sukah must be seven Tefachim long, it means that it must have a minimum of seven Tefachim in each dimension, the length and the width. It does not matter whether the area of the Sukah comes to 49 square Tefachim; it any one dimension does not reach seven Tefachim, it is invalid. (In most other Halachos, such as the 4 x 4 Amah Sukah according to Rebbi or 4 x 4 Tefachim with regard to Mechitzos, Tosfos is certainly correct. Both dimensions must be a full 4 Amos or Tefachim. However, Rashi differentiates between these and the Shi'ur of Sukah, perhaps because the Shi'ur of Sukah depends on the practical consideration of placing a table along with a person into a Sukah. The table can be placed either at the person's side, or before him.)


OPINIONS: The Gemara records two arguments between Beis Shamai and Beis Hillel. First, they argue about the minimum size of a Sukah. Beis Shamai says that a Sukah must be at least seven by seven Tefachim (large enough to hold "Rosho v'Rubo v'Shulchano" -- one's head, most of his body, and his table). Beis Hillel says that it needs to be only six by six Tefachim (large enough to hold one's head and most of his body, without his table). Second, they argue whether a person fulfills his obligation of sitting in a Sukah when he is inside the Sukah but his table is outside of the Sukah. According to Beis Shamai, the Rabanan made a Gezeirah that he is *not* Yotzei his obligation, because we are afraid that he might be drawn after his table and end up eating outside of the Sukah. Beis Hillel maintains that the Rabanan did not make such a Gezeirah. In both cases, we find that Beis Shamai is more strict.

According to Beis Shamai, is the Pesul of a small Sukah (one that is less than seven by seven Tefachim) and the Pesul of a large Sukah with the table outside, mid'Oraisa or mid'Rabanan? In addition, what is the Halachah in each case?

(a) The RIF (13a in the pages of the Rif) writes that in *both* arguments, the Halachah follows Beis Shamai, because the two issues "depend on the same reason." The RAN and the RITVA explain that the Rif understood that the Pesul of a small Sukah is mid'Rabanan, just like the Pesul of a large Sukah with the table outside. In both cases, the Rabanan made a Gezeirah lest a person be drawn after his table. Since the Rif says that both types of Sukah (the small one, and the one with the table situated outside of the Sukah) are Pasul for the same reason (i.e. the Gezeirah d'Rabanan), it is clear that he holds that Beis Shamai only invalidates them mid'Rabanan.

The Mishnah Berurah (Bi'ur Halachah, DH Afilu) asks that although the Rif seems to say that even the Pesul of a small Sukah is only mid'Rabanan, we find that the Gemara in many places (for example, 7a, 16a-b) discusses the minimum Shi'ur of a Sukah and it always seems to take for granted that there is no Shi'ur mid'Oraisa other than 7 X 7. If that Shi'ur was mid'Rabanan, the Gemara should have mentioned what the Shi'ur d'Oraisa is.

To answer this question on the Rif, the Mishnah Berurah (in Sha'ar ha'Tziyon, #7) suggests that perhaps the Rif also means to say that the Pesul of a small Sukah is *mid'Oraisa*. How does he understand the Rif's statement that both the case of a large Sukah with the table outside and the case of a small Sukah are Pasul for the same reason? It could be that the Rif understood that the fact that the Torah invalidates a small Sukah (the size of which is not large enough to contain one's table) reveals that the *Torah itself* was concerned that if the table is outside of the Sukah because of its small size, one might be drawn after the table. From that Halachah, the Rabanan learned to make a Gezeirah in the case of a large Sukah with the table outside, even though the Torah did not invalidate it (since it is *possible* to have the table inside such a Sukah -- see Ran).

(b) However, the ROSH and the RAN and others say that the two arguments are completely unrelated. Rav Shmuel bar Yitzchak, who ruled like Beis Shamai, said that a Sukah has to be large enough to contain "Rosho v'Rubo v'Shulchano." He is only ruling like Beis Shamai with regard to the Shi'ur that the Torah requires for a valid Sukah. In the case of a large Sukah with the table outside, Beis Shamai's reason is completely different. There, Beis Shamai holds that the Rabanan invalidated the Sukah out of concern that a person might be drawn after his table. Rav Shmuel bar Yitzchak did not say that we follow Beis Shamai in that case. Consequently, a Sukah less than 7 X 7 is Pasul *mid'Oraisa*, while a large Sukah with the table outside is kosher mid'Oraisa. Even according to Beis Shamai, it is only invalid *mid'Rabanan*.

The MISHNAH BERURAH (OC 634, Bi'ur Halachah, end of DH Pesulah) suggests that this is also the opinion of the RAMBAM (Hilchos Sukah 4:1, 6:8).

(c) TOSFOS (3a, DH d'Amar Lach) and TOSFOS RABEINU YEHUDAH HE'CHASID (Berachos 11a) suggest that in both cases, the Pesul is d'Oraisa according to Beis Shamai. Even though the Gemara says that the Pesul of a large Sukah with the table outside is because of a Gezeirah d'Rabanan lest a person be drawn after his table, the Rabanan decreed that if a person sits in his Sukah with the table outside, then he will not have fulfilled the Mitzvah of Sukah even *mid'Oraisa*. The Rabanan have the right to decree that if a person does not perform a Mitzvah in the way that they prescribed, then he does not fulfill the Torah obligation.

It is not clear, though, how the Rabanan are able to prevent one from fulfilling his obligation mid'Oraisa. Perhaps everyone performs each Mitzvah "according to the will of the Rabanan" (as we find regarding the act of Kidushin, "Kol d'Mekadesh, a'Da'ata d'Rabanan Mekadesh"). The intention of the Rabanan, in turn, is that the act should not be considered to be done for the purpose of fulfilling a Mitzvah if it is done in a way contrary to what the Rabanan prescribed. Even if a Mitzvah can be fulfilled without Kavanah, specific intent, nevertheless if a person specifically intends *not* to be Yotze the Mitzvah, he will not be Yotze (as TOSFOS rules in Menachos 40b DH mi'Mai).

HALACHAH: All of the Poskim rule like Beis Shamai in the case of a small Sukah, because Rav Shmuel bar Yitzchak ruled like that. In the case of a large Sukah with the table outside, TOSFOS, the ROSH and many Rishonim rule like Beis Hillel. Since Rav Shmuel bar Yitzchak was not discussing that case (according to their understanding of his words), we rely on the tried and true rule that whenever Beis Shamai and Beis Hillel argue, the Halachah follows Beis Hillel.

However, the RIF and RAMBAM rule like Beis Shamai even in the case of a large Sukah with the table outside, because they maintain that both arguments are based on the same reasoning (see above, (a)). If we rule like Beis Shamai in one case, then we must rule like Beis Shamai in the other case as well. This is how the SHULCHAN ARUCH rules (OC 634:4).

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