1 the doubt being whether it was due to an issue of semen2 or whether it was caused by [a separate gonorrhoeic] attack.3 Once uncleanness has been established, if there is a doubt, he is unclean.4
HIS ISSUE OF SEMEN IS UNCLEAN: In what respect [is the semen unclean]? For if it be in respect of touching it,5 how is it worse than the issue of semen of a clean person?6 — It must therefore mean that the semen of a sufferer from gonorrhoea defiles through being carried. But who is known to hold the view that the issue of semen of a sufferer from gonorrhoea defiles if carried? For if you say that it is the following Tanna, as has been taught: 'R. Eliezer says that the issue of semen of a sufferer from gonorrhoea does not defile if carried, whilst R. Joshua says that it does defile if carried, because it is impossible that it should not be diluted with gonorrheic fluid' — even R. Joshua only says this7 because it is diluted with gonorrhoeic fluid, but not when it is undiluted?8 — In point of fact, said R. Adda b. Ahabah, [the purpose of the Mishnah is] to lay down that [subsequent gonorrhoeic issue] is not ascribed to [the prior flow of semen].9
R. Papa tried to argue with Raba that this10 was because the flow resulted from his weakness [following the gonorrhoea].11 Raba said to him: Have we not learnt: A proselyte defiles if subject to a gonorrhoeic flow immediately after conversion?12 — He replied: There cannot be greater sickness than this.13
We must say in fact14 that [to what extent semen of a sufferer from gonorrhoea defiles] is a controversy of Tannaim — For it has been taught: The semen of a sufferer from gonorrhoea defiles for twenty — four hours15 if carried. R. Jose however, Says; for the whole of the same day.16
Wherein does their controversy lie?17 — In respect of the point raised by Samuel. For Samuel noted the following contradiction. It is written, If there be among you any man that is not clean by reason of that which chanceth him by night [etc.]18 and it is written [further], when evening cometh on he shall bathe himself in water.19 The one who says twenty-four hours infers this from when evening cometh on,20 and the other infers it from, 'that which chanceth him by night'.21 Now to the one who infers it from 'when evening cometh on,' [it may be objected] it is written, 'that which chanceth him by night'? — He will reply that it is customary for an emission to occur at night.22
MISHNAH. SAMUEL WAS A NAZIRITE IN THE OPINION OF R. NEHORAI, AS IT SAYS, AND THERE SHALL NO RAZOR [MORAH] COME UPON HIS HEAD.23 IT SAYS WITH REFERENCE TO SAMSON, AND [NO] RAZOR [MORAH]24 AND IT SAYS WITH REFERENCE TO SAMUEL, AND [NO] RAZOR [MORAH]; JUST AS MORAH IN THE CASE OF SAMSON [IS USED OF] A NAZIRITE,25 SO [WE SHOULD SAY] MORAH IN THE CASE OF SAMUEL [IS USED OF] A NAZIRITE. R. JOSE OBJECTED: BUT HAS NOT MORAH REFERENCE TO [FEAR26 OF] A HUMAN BEING? R. NEHORAI SAID TO HIM: BUT DOES IT NOT ALSO SAY, AND SAMUEL SAID; 'HOW CAN I GO? IF SAUL HEAR IT HE WILL KILL ME'27 [WHICH SHOWS] THAT HE WAS IN FACT AFRAID OF A HUMAN BEING?28
GEMARA. Rab said to his son Hiyya:
1 So also did R. Huna say to his son Rabbah. Snatch [the cup] and say grace.
Does this mean that it is better to say the blessing [than to make the responses]? Has it not been taught: R. Jose says that he who responds. 'Amen', is greater than he who says the blessing, and R. Nehorai said to him: I swear2 that this is so. In proof of this, [it may be noted] that the ordinary soldiers begin a battle but the picked troops gain the victory?3 — There is a difference of opinion between Tannaim on this matter. For it has been taught: Both the one who says the blessing and the one who responds, 'Amen', are included [in this verse].4 Nevertheless, [reward] is given first to the one who says the blessing.
R. Eleazar,5 citing R. Hanina, said: The disciples of the sages increase peace throughout the world, as it is said, And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children.6