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Babylonian Talmud: Tractate Shabbath

Folio 25a

is an affirmative precept:1  thus there is an affirmative and a negative precept in respect of Festivals, and an affirmative precept cannot supersede a negative and an affirmative precept.2

Thus it [the burning of defiled terumah] is forbidden only on Festivals, but on weekdays it is well.3  What is the reason? Said Rab: Just as it is obligatory to burn defiled sacred food, so t is obligatory to burn defiled terumah, and the Torah said, When it is burnt, you may benefit therefrom. Where did the Torah say thus? — [It follows] from R. Nahman's [dictum]. For R. Nahman said in Rabbah b. Abbuha's name, Scripture saith, And I, behold, I have given thee the charge of mine heave-offerings:4  the Writ refers to two terumoth,5  viz., clean and unclean terumah, and the Divine Law said'[I have given] thee', [meaning], let it be thine for burning it under thy pot. Alternatively, [it follows] from R. Abbahu's [dictum]. For R. Abbahu said in R. Johanan's name: 'Neither have I put away thereof, being unclean:'6  'thereof' you may not 'put away,'7  but you may 'put away' [burn] defiled oil of terumah. Yet [perhaps] say: 'thereof' you may not 'put away', but you may 'put away undefiled oil of kodesh8  which is defiled? — Does it [the reverse] not follow a fortiori: if tithe, which is light,9  yet the Torah said, neither have I put away thereof, being unclean'; then how much more so kodesh, which is more stringent? If so, in the case of terumah too let us say, does it [the reverse] not follow a afortiori?10  — Surely thereof' is written!11  And why do you prefer it thus?12  — It is logical that I do not exclude kodesh, since it is [stringent] in respect of (Mnemonic: Pa NaK'aKaS):13  [i] Piggul, [ii] Nothar, [iii] sacrifice [Korban], [iv] Me'ilah, [v] Kareth, and [vi] 'it is forbidden [asur] to an onen.14  On the contrary, terumah is not to be excluded, since [it is stringent] in respect of its (mnemonic Ma HPaZ): [i] Death [Mithah], [ii] a fifth [Homesh],

To Part b

Original footnotes renumbered.
  1. For it intimates, rest therein.
  2. The negative precept is 'no manner of work' etc.; while the affirmative precept to burn what is left over is in Ex. XII, 10, quoted supra. Thus unfit sacred food may not be burnt on Festivals, and the same applies to unclean terumah.
  3. One may benefit from the burning, e.g., by using it as fuel.
  4. Num. XVIII, 8. Heb. terumothai, pl. of terumah with passage.
  5. Since it is in the plural.
  6. Deut. XXVI, 14; v. whole passage. The reference is to the second tithe, and 'being unclean' is understood as meaning whether the person or the tithe was unclean.
  7. I.e., by using it as fuel.
  8. V. Glos. E.g., that used in connection with the meal offerings; v. Lev. II, 1.
  9. I.e., its sanctity is less than that of sacrifices.
  10. For its sanctity is higher than that of tithes.
  11. Implying a limitation as stated.
  12. Lit., 'what (reason) do you see?'- Why exclude terumah by exegesis and include kodesh a fortiori? Perhaps it should be the reverse?
  13. A mnemonic is a word or phrase made up of the initial letters of a number of other words or phrases, as an aid to the memory.
  14. V. Glos. for these words. (i) Piggul, lit., 'abomination', is a sacrifice killed with the intention of eating it without the boundaries appointed for same; (ii) nothar, with the intention of eating it after its appointed time. These are the connotations of the words here, though elsewhere piggul has the meaning given here to nothar (Tosaf.). These unlawful intentions render the sacrifice an 'abomination', and it may then not be eaten even within its lawful boundaries and time on pain of kareth. (iii) It is designated a sacrifice (Korban). (iv) If one puts it to secular use he is liable to a trespass-offering (Me'ilah). (v) Kareth is incurred for eating it in an unclean bodily state. Kareth (lit., 'cutting off') is the Divine penalty of premature death and childlessness, which is severer than 'Death at the hand of Heaven', which does not include childlessness.-Since Kodesh is so strict in all these matters, it is logical that the limitation does not apply to it.
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Shabbath 25b

, [iii] it cannot be redeemed [Pidyon], and [iv] it is forbidden to Zarim?1  The former are more numerous. Alternatively, kodesh is more stringent, since it involves the penalty of kareth. R. Nahman b. Isaac said: Scripture saith, [The firstfruits of thy corn, of thy wine, and of thine oil …] shalt thou give to him:2  to 'him', but not for its light;3  hence it can be used for light [if defiled].4

R. ISHMAEL SAID etc. What is the reason? — Rabbah answered, Since it is malodorous, it is feared that he [the occupant of the house] will leave it and go out. Said Abaye to him, Then let him leave it! I maintain, he replied, that the kindling of the lamp on the Sabbath is a duty,5  for R. Nahman b. R. Zabda-others state, R. Nahman b. Raba-said in Rab's name: The kindling of the lamp for the Sabbath is a duty; the washing of the hands and the feet in warm water on the eve [of the Sabbath] is voluntary. Whilst I maintain that it is a mizwah.6  How is it a mizwah? For Rab Judah said in Rab's name: This was the practice of R. Judah b. Il'ai: On the eve of the Sabbath a basin filled with hot water was brought to him, and he washed his face, hands, and feet, and he wrapped himself and sat in fringed linen robes,7  and was like an angel of the Lord of Hosts. But his disciples hid the corners of their garments from him.8  Said he to them, My sons! Have I not thus taught you: A linen robe, in respect to fringes-Beth Shammai exempt it, while Beth Hillel hold it liable, and the halachah is as Beth Hillel? But they held, It is forbidden on account of a night garment.9

And thou hast removed my soul far off from peace; I forgot prosperity.10  What is the meaning of, 'and thou hast removed my soul far off from peace'? — R. Abbahu said: This refers to the kindling of the light on the Sabbath.11  I forgot prosperity;12  R. Jeremiah said: This refers to the [loss of] baths. R. Johanan said: This means the washing of hands and feet in hot water. R. Isaac Nappaha13  said: This refers to a beautiful bed and beautiful bedclothes upon it.14  R. Abba said: This refers to a decked-out bed and an adorned wife for scholars.

Our Rabbis taught: Who is wealthy? He who has pleasure in his wealth: this is R. Meir's view. (Mnemonic: MaT KaS).15  R. Tarfon said: He who possesses a hundred vineyards, a hundred fields and a hundred slaves working in them.16  R. Akiba said: He who has a wife comely in deeds.17  R. Jose said: He who has a privy near his table.18

It was taught: R. Simeon b. Eleazar said: One may not light [the Sabbath lamp] with balsam. What is the reason? — Rabbah said: Since its smell is fragrant, there is [the need of] a preventive measure, lest one draw supplies from it.19  Said Abaye to him,

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Original footnotes renumbered.
  1. For Zar, pl. Zarim, v. Glos. (i) If a zar or an unclean priest eats terumah, he is liable to Death at the hand of heaven; (ii) if a zar eats it unwittingly, he must restore it and add a fifth; (iii) under no circumstances can terumah be redeemed and converted to hullin, whereas kodesh can be redeemed if it is blemished; and finally (iv), it is always forbidden to zarim. But certain sacrifices (kodesh) are permitted to zarim after the sprinkling of the blood, e.g., the thanksgiving and the peace-offerings.
  2. Deut. XVIII, 4.
  3. I.e., the priest must be able to use it himself, and not have to burn it for its heat or light. Hence defiled corn, etc., which may not be eaten as terumah, may not be separated as terumah for undefiled corn.
  4. For otherwise, why exclude it?
  5. I.e., the lamp must be lit where the evening repast is consumed. If the person leaves it and dines elsewhere he does not fulfil his obligation.
  6. Mizwah denotes either a definite precept or something which while not actually commanded is meritorious. The latter is meant here.
  7. The fringes were of wool. This constitutes a forbidden mixture (v. Deut. XXII, 11), and it is disputed by Tannaim whether this should be done.
  8. Because they were not provided with fringes, V. next note.
  9. A garment worn only at night is not subject to fringes; consequently, this forbidden mixture (v. n. 3) is then forbidden, since there is no precept of fringes to supersede it. The disciple held that Beth Hillel's ruling was Scriptural only; nevertheless it is forbidden by Rabbinical law, to avoid confusing night attire with day attire.
  10. Lam. III, 17.
  11. Jeremiah laments that they could not even afford this; loss of light brings loss of peace.
  12. Lit., 'good'.
  13. Or, the smith; v. p. 102, n. 13.
  14. Or, a beautiful couch and its appointments.
  15. V. p. 110, n. 1. R. Meir, R. Tarfon, R. Akiba, and R. Jose.
  16. The most famous dictum on wealth is in Ab. IV, 1: Who is wealthy? He who rejoices in his portion. Nevertheless, other Rabbis took a more material view of wealth, as here. Maharsha suggests that R. Tarfon intentionally states his case in an exaggerated form, to intimate that one who seeks wealth can never really attain it, unless he is satisfied with what he possesses. On that view R. Tarfon's statement really agrees with that in Aboth. Actually R. Tarfon was very wealthy, and Judaism is not opposed to wealth in principle. 'Despise not riches. Honour the wealthy if they are benevolent and modest. But remember that the true riches is contentment'. — Sefer Ma'aloth Hammidoth, quoted by M. Joseph in Judaism as Creed and Life, p. 388.
  17. He spoke from personal experience: his wife stood out as a model of fidelity and trust, and it was she alone who enabled and encouraged him to attain his high position (Ned. 50a).
  18. In a time when sanitary arrangements were very primitive and privies were situated in fields, this would be a sign of wealth, V. T.A. I, 48.
  19. Which is forbidden; v. Bez. 22a.
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