Berakhot 27bברכות כ״ז ב
The William Davidson Talmudתלמוד מהדורת ויליאם דוידסון
Toggle Reader Menu Display Settings
27bכ״ז ב

לא כנגד רבו ולא אחורי רבו

directly next to his rabbi, presumptuously indicating that he is his rabbi’s equal, and behind his rabbi as it creates the impression that he is bowing to him (Tosafot)?

ותניא רבי אליעזר אומר המתפלל אחורי רבו והנותן שלום לרבו והמחזיר שלום לרבו והחולק על ישיבתו של רבו והאומר דבר שלא שמע מפי רבו גורם לשכינה שתסתלק מישראל

And it was taught in a baraita, in a more extreme manner, as Rabbi Eliezer says: One who prays behind his rabbi and one who greets his rabbi without waiting for his rabbi to greet him first, one who returns his rabbi’s greeting without saying: Greetings to you, rabbi, one who rivals his rabbi’s yeshiva, i.e., establishes a yeshiva of his own and teaches during his rabbi’s lifetime without his consent (Rambam), and one who says something in the name of his rabbi which he did not hear directly from his rabbi, causes the Divine Presence to withdraw from Israel.

שאני רבי ירמיה בר אבא דתלמיד חבר הוה והיינו דקאמר ליה רבי ירמיה בר אבא לרב מי בדלת אמר ליה אין בדילנא ולא אמר מי בדיל מר

With regard to Rabbi Yirmeya’s conduct, the Gemara explains that Rabbi Yirmeya bar Abba is different, as he was not a mere student of Rav. Rather, he was a disciple-colleague and was, therefore, permitted to act that way. And that is why on one occasion, when Rav prayed the Shabbat prayer early, Rabbi Yirmeya bar Abba asked him: Did you distance yourself from labor and accept the sanctity of Shabbat? Rav said to him: Yes, I distanced myself. And Rabbi Yirmeya did not say to him: Did the Master distance himself, as would have been appropriate had he merely been Rav’s student.

ומי בדיל והאמר רבי אבין פעם אחת התפלל רבי של שבת בערב שבת ונכנס למרחץ ויצא ושנה לן פרקין ועדיין לא חשכה אמר רבא ההוא דנכנס להזיע וקודם גזירה הוה

Although Rav replied that he distanced himself from labor, did he indeed need to distance himself from labor? Didn’t Rabbi Avin say: Once Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi prayed the Shabbat prayer on the eve of Shabbat before nightfall. He then entered the bathhouse and emerged and taught us our chapters that we had learned, and it was not yet dark. Rava said: That is a case where he had entered the bathhouse to perspire, and it was before the Sages issued a decree prohibiting perspiring in a bathhouse on Shabbat.

איני והא אביי שרא ליה לרב דימי בר ליואי לכברויי סלי

The Gemara asks: Is that so, that he was required to refrain from labor? Didn’t Abaye permit Rav Dimi bar Liva’ei to fumigate baskets with sulfur even though he had already recited the Shabbat prayer, indicating that it is permitted to perform labor even after the Shabbat prayer?

ההוא טעותא הואי

The Gemara responds: That was an error, as Rav Dimi did not intend to begin Shabbat early. It was a cloudy day and he mistakenly thought that the sun had set and that was why he prayed. Consequently, even though he prayed, the Shabbat prayer did not obligate him to conduct himself in accordance with the sanctity of Shabbat and he was allowed to perform labor even after his prayer.

וטעותא מי הדרא והא אמר אבידן פעם אחת נתקשרו שמים בעבים כסבורים העם לומר חשכה הוא נכנסו לבית הכנסת והתפללו של מוצאי שבת בשבת ונתפזרו העבים וזרחה החמה

The Gemara goes on to ask: Can a mistake be reversed, enabling one to conduct himself as if he had not prayed? Didn’t Avidan, a student of Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi, say: Once the sky became overcast, leading the people to think that it was the dark of night; they entered the synagogue and recited the evening prayer of the conclusion of Shabbat on Shabbat. And later, the clouds cleared and the sun shone, indicating that it was still day.

ובאו ושאלו את רבי ואמר הואיל והתפללו התפללו שאני צבור דלא מטרחינן להו:

And they came and asked Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi what they should do, and he said: Since they have prayed, they have prayed, and they need not pray again. Although they prayed erroneously, their mistake is not reversible and what was done remains. The Gemara responds: A community is different in that we do not burden them to pray again.

אמר רבי חייא בר אבין רב צלי של שבת בערב שבת רבי יאשיה מצלי של מוצאי שבת בשבת רב צלי של שבת בערב שבת אומר קדושה על הכוס או אינו אומר קדושה על הכוס תא שמע דאמר רב נחמן אמר שמואל מתפלל אדם של שבת בערב שבת ואומר קדושה על הכוס והלכתא כוותיה

The Gemara continues to discuss the possibility of reciting the evening prayer early, even on Shabbat. Rabbi Ḥiyya bar Avin said: Rav prayed the Shabbat prayer on the eve of Shabbat before nightfall. Rabbi Yoshiya would pray the evening prayer of the conclusion of Shabbat on Shabbat. With regard to the fact that Rav prayed the Shabbat prayer on the eve of Shabbat before nightfall, the dilemma is raised: In those cases, did he recite kiddush over the cup of wine, or did he not recite kiddush over the cup of wine before the stars emerged? Come and hear a resolution to this, as Rav Naḥman said that Shmuel said: One prays the Shabbat prayer on the eve of Shabbat before nightfall and recites kiddush over the cup of wine. And the halakha is in accordance with his ruling.

רבי יאשיה מצלי של מוצאי שבת בשבת אומר הבדלה על הכוס או אינו אומר הבדלה על הכוס תא שמע דאמר רב יהודה אמר שמואל מתפלל אדם של מוצאי שבת בשבת ואומר הבדלה על הכוס

A similar dilemma was raised concerning the fact that Rabbi Yoshiya would pray the evening prayer of the conclusion of Shabbat on Shabbat: After praying, while it is still Shabbat, does he recite havdala over the cup of wine or does one not recite havdala over the cup of wine? Come and hear a resolution to this, as Rav Yehuda said that Shmuel said: One prays the evening prayer of the conclusion of Shabbat on Shabbat and recites havdala over the cup of wine.

אמר רבי זירא אמר רבי אסי אמר רבי אלעזר אמר רבי חנינא אמר רב בצד עמוד זה התפלל רבי ישמעאל ברבי יוסי של שבת בערב שבת

Rabbi Zeira said that Rabbi Asi said that Rabbi Elazar said that Rabbi Ḥanina said that Rav said: Alongside this specific pillar before me, Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yosei, prayed the Shabbat prayer on the eve of Shabbat before nightfall.

כי אתא עולא אמר בצד תמרה הוה ולא בצד עמוד הוה ולא רבי ישמעאל ברבי יוסי הוה אלא רבי אלעזר ברבי יוסי הוה ולא של שבת בערב שבת הוה אלא של מוצאי שבת בשבת הוה:

But when Ulla came from the Eretz Yisrael to Babylonia, he related a different version of this story. He said that he had heard: This transpired beside a palm tree, not beside a pillar, and it was not Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yosei, but it was Rabbi Elazar, son of Rabbi Yosei, and it was not the Shabbat prayer on Shabbat eve before nightfall, rather it was the prayer of the conclusion of Shabbat on Shabbat.

תפלת הערב אין לה קבע: מאי אין לה קבע אילימא דאי בעי מצלי כוליה ליליא ליתני תפלת הערב כל הלילה אלא מאי אין לה קבע

We learned in the mishna: The evening prayer may be recited throughout the night and is not fixed to a specific hour. The Gemara asks: What is the meaning of is not fixed? If you say that if one wishes, he may pray throughout the night, then let the mishna teach: The evening prayer may be recited throughout the night. Rather, what is the meaning of not fixed?

כמאן דאמר תפלת ערבית רשות דאמר רב יהודה אמר שמואל תפלת ערבית רבן גמליאל אומר חובה רבי יהושע אומר רשות אמר אביי הלכה כדברי האומר חובה ורבא אמר הלכה כדברי האומר רשות

It is in accordance with the opinion of the one who said: The evening prayer is optional. As Rav Yehuda said that Shmuel said with regard to the evening prayer. Rabban Gamliel says: It is obligatory. Rabbi Yehoshua says: It is optional. Abaye said: The halakha is in accordance with the statement of the one who said: The evening prayer is obligatory. Rava said: The halakha is in accordance with the statement of the one who said: The evening prayer is optional.

תנו רבנן מעשה בתלמיד אחד שבא לפני רבי יהושע אמר לו תפלת ערבית רשות או חובה אמר ליה רשות

The Sages taught: There was an incident involving a student, who came before Rabbi Yehoshua. The student said to him: Is the evening prayer optional or obligatory? Rabbi Yehoshua said to him: Optional.

בא לפני רבן גמליאל אמר לו תפלת ערבית רשות או חובה אמר לו חובה אמר לו והלא רבי יהושע אמר לי רשות אמר לו המתן עד שיכנסו בעלי תריסין לבית המדרש

The same student came before Rabban Gamliel and said to him: Is the evening prayer optional or obligatory? Rabban Gamliel said to him: Obligatory. The student said to Rabban Gamliel: But didn’t Rabbi Yehoshua tell me that the evening prayer is optional? Rabban Gamliel said to the student: Wait until the “masters of the shields,” a reference to the Torah scholars who battle in the war of Torah, enter the study hall, at which point we will discuss this issue.

כשנכנסו בעלי תריסין עמד השואל ושאל תפלת ערבית רשות או חובה אמר לו רבן גמליאל חובה אמר להם רבן גמליאל לחכמים כלום יש אדם שחולק בדבר זה אמר ליה רבי יהושע לאו אמר לו והלא משמך אמרו לי רשות

When the masters of the shields entered, the questioner stood before everyone present and asked: Is the evening prayer optional or obligatory? Rabban Gamliel said to him: Obligatory. In order to ascertain whether or not Rabbi Yehoshua still maintained his opinion, Rabban Gamliel said to the Sages: Is there any person who disputes this matter? Rabbi Yehoshua said to him: No, no one disagrees. In deference to the Nasi, he did not wish to argue with him publicly (Tziyyun LeNefesh Ḥayya). Rabban Gamliel said to Rabbi Yehoshua: But was it not in your name that they told me that the evening prayer is optional?

אמר ליה יהושע עמוד על רגליך ויעידו בך עמד רבי יהושע על רגליו ואמר אלמלא אני חי והוא מת יכול החי להכחיש את המת ועכשיו שאני חי והוא חי היאך יכול החי להכחיש את החי

Rabban Gamliel said to Rabbi Yehoshua: Yehoshua, stand on your feet and they will testify against you. Rabbi Yehoshua stood on his feet and said: If I were alive and the student were dead, the living can contradict the dead, and I could deny issuing that ruling. Now that I am alive and he is alive, how can the living contradict the living? I have no choice but to admit that I said it.

היה רבן גמליאל יושב ודורש ורבי יהושע עומד על רגליו עד שרננו כל העם ואמרו לחוצפית התורגמן עמוד ועמד

In the meantime, Rabban Gamliel, as the Nasi, was sitting and lecturing, and Rabbi Yehoshua all the while was standing on his feet, because Rabban Gamliel did not instruct him to sit. He remained standing in deference to the Nasi. This continued for some time, until it aroused great resentment against Rabban Gamliel, and all of the people assembled began murmuring and said to Ḥutzpit the disseminator: Stop conveying Rabban Gamliel’s lecture. And he stopped.

אמרי עד כמה נצעריה וניזיל בראש השנה אשתקד צעריה בבכורות במעשה דרבי צדוק צעריה הכא נמי צעריה תא ונעבריה

The Gemara relates that in their murmuring they said: How long will Rabban Gamliel continue afflicting him? Last year on Rosh HaShana, he afflicted him; Rabban Gamliel ordered Rabbi Yehoshua to come to him carrying his staff and bag, on the day on which Yom Kippur occurred, according to Rabbi Yehoshua’s calculations. Regarding the firstborn, in the incident involving the question of Rabbi Tzadok, he afflicted him just as he did now, and forced him to remain standing as punishment for his failure to defend his differing opinion. Here too, he is afflicting him. Let us remove him from his position as Nasi.

מאן נוקים ליה נוקמיה לרבי יהושע בעל מעשה הוא נוקמיה לרבי עקיבא דילמא עניש ליה דלית ליה זכות אבות

It was so agreed, but the question arose: Who shall we establish in his place? Shall we establish Rabbi Yehoshua in his place? The Sages rejected that option because Rabbi Yehoshua was party to the incident for which Rabban Gamliel was deposed. Appointing him would be extremely upsetting for Rabban Gamliel. Shall we establish Rabbi Akiva in his place? The Sages rejected that option because Rabbi Akiva, who descended from a family of converts, would be vulnerable. Perhaps due to Rabban Gamliel’s resentment he would cause him to be divinely punished as he lacks the merit of his ancestors to protect him.

אלא נוקמיה לרבי אלעזר בן עזריה דהוא חכם והוא עשיר והוא עשירי לעזרא הוא חכם דאי מקשי ליה מפרק ליה והוא עשיר דאי אית ליה לפלוחי לבי קיסר אף הוא איזיל ופלח והוא עשירי לעזרא דאית ליה זכות אבות ולא מצי עניש ליה אתו ואמרו ליה ניחא ליה למר דליהוי ריש מתיבתא אמר להו איזיל ואימליך באינשי ביתי אזל ואמליך בדביתהו אמרה ליה

Rather, suggested the Sages, let us establish Rabbi Elazar ben Azarya in his place, his outstanding characteristics set him apart from the other candidates. He is wise, rich, and a tenth generation descendant of Ezra. The Gemara explains: He is wise, so if Rabban Gamliel raises a challenge in matters of Torah, he will answer it and not be embarrassed. And he is rich, so if the need arises to pay homage to the Caesar’s court and serve as a representative of Israel to lobby and negotiate, he has sufficient wealth to cover the costs of the long journeys, taxes, and gifts, so he too is able to go and pay homage. And he is a tenth generation descendant of Ezra, so he has the merit of his ancestors, and Rabban Gamliel will be unable to cause him to be punished. They came and said to him: Would the Master consent to being the Head of the Yeshiva? He said to them: I will go and consult with my household. He went and consulted with his wife. She said to him: