ועשיתינהו לזניה אי אמרת בשלמא לאו דינא משום הכי עשיינהו אלא אי אמרת דינא עשיינהו בעי
and I forced them to feed him, for which he is grateful. The Gemara interprets this incident in light of the issue at hand: Granted, if you say that this was not according to the halakha, i.e., the man’s sons had the right to refrain from sustaining him, due to that reason Rabbi Yonatan had to force them to feed their father; but if you say this is the halakha, i.e., the man’s sons were required to sustain him, why did he need to force them to provide the sustenance of their own accord? The court could have simply requisitioned the necessary amount from the property. This shows that the halakha is not in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Ile’a.
א"ר אילעא באושא התקינו המבזבז אל יבזבז יותר מחומש תניא נמי הכי המבזבז אל יבזבז יותר מחומש שמא יצטרך לבריות ומעשה באחד שבקש לבזבז [יותר מחומש] ולא הניח לו חבירו ומנו רבי ישבב ואמרי לה רבי ישבב ולא הניחו חבירו ומנו רבי עקיבא
§ Apropos the ordinances instituted by the Sages in Usha, the Gemara cites another one. Rabbi Ile’a said: In Usha the Sages instituted that one who dispenses his money to charity should not dispense more than one-fifth. That opinion is also taught in a baraita: One who scatters should not scatter more than one-fifth, lest he render himself destitute and need the help of other people. And an incident occurred involving a certain individual who sought to dispense more than one-fifth of his property as charity, and his friend did not let him act upon his wishes. And who was this friend? Rabbi Yeshevav. And some say that Rabbi Yeshevav was the one who wanted to give too much charity, and his friend did not let him do so, and who was the friend? Rabbi Akiva.
אמר רב נחמן ואיתימא רב אחא בר יעקב מאי קרא (בראשית כח, כב) וכל אשר תתן לי עשר אעשרנו לך
Rav Naḥman said, and some say it was Rav Aḥa bar Ya’akov who said: What is the verse that alludes to this maximum amount of charity? “And of all that You shall give me, I will surely give a tenth of it [aser a’asrenu] to You” (Genesis 28:22). The double use of the verb that means to donate one-tenth indicates that Jacob, who issued this statement, was actually referring to two-tenths, i.e., one-fifth.
והא לא דמי עישורא בתרא לעישורא קמא אמר רב אשי אעשרנו לבתרא כי קמא
The Gemara asks: But the latter tenth is not similar to the first tenth, as it would be one-tenth of what remained after the first tenth had been removed. Consequently, the two-tenths would not equal one-fifth of the original total. The Gemara answers that Rav Ashi said: Since the verse could have said: I will surely give one-tenth [aser a’aser], and instead stated: “I will surely give a tenth of it [aser a’asrenu],” it thereby alludes to the fact that the latter tenth is like the first one.
אמר רב שימי בר אשי ושמועות הללו מתמעטות והולכות וסימניך קטנים כתבו ובזבזו
With regard to the above statements concerning the Sages’ ordinances in Usha, Rav Shimi bar Ashi said: And these halakhot continually decrease. The first statement was stated by Rabbi Ile’a, quoting a statement by Reish Lakish in the name of Rabbi Yosei bar Ḥanina. The second halakha was delivered by Rabbi Ile’a in the name of Reish Lakish, while the third was taught by Rabbi Ile’a without quoting another Sage. And this is your mnemonic for the order of these halakhot: Minors wrote and dispensed. This alludes to the ruling requiring a father to support his children while they are minors, the ruling about one who wrote a document granting all of his property to his sons, and the ruling about one who dispenses large sums to charity.
אמר רב יצחק באושא התקינו שיהא אדם מתגלגל עם בנו עד שתים עשרה שנה מכאן ואילך יורד עמו לחייו איני והא אמר ליה רב לרב שמואל בר שילת בציר מבר שית לא תקביל בר שית קביל וספי ליה כתורא
§ Rav Yitzḥak said: In Usha the Sages enacted that a person should treat his son gently, even if he does not want to study, until his son is twelve years old. From this point forward he harasses him in all aspects of his life in order to force him to study. The Gemara asks: Is that so? But didn’t Rav say to Rav Shmuel bar Sheilat, who taught children: With regard to a child less than six years old, do not accept him; if he is six years old, accept him and stuff him like an ox, i.e., just as an ox is force-fed, you should force the students to study Torah.
אין ספי ליה כתורא מיהו אינו יורד עמו לחייו עד לאחר שתים עשרה שנה ואב"א לא קשיא הא למקרא הא למשנה
The Gemara answers: There is no contradiction here, as yes, one must stuff him like an ox and teach him intensively; however, if the student refuses to learn, one does not harass him in all aspects of his life until after he is twelve years old. And if you wish, say that this is not difficult for a different reason: This halakha, which prescribes forcing the students to study from the age of six, is referring to the Bible, whereas that halakha, that one should not harass a boy to study until he is twelve, is referring to the Mishna.
דאמר אביי אמרה לי אם בר שית למקרא בר עשר למשנה בר תליסר לתעניתא מעת לעת ובתינוקת בת תריסר
This is as Abaye said: My foster mother told me that a six-year-old is ready for Bible study and a ten-year-old is mature enough to study Mishna. Additionally, a thirteen-year-old is sufficiently developed to fast for twenty-four hours like any other adult. And as for a girl, she must start observing fasts when she is twelve years old.
אמר אביי אמרה לי אם האי בר שית דטרקא ליה עקרבא ביומא דמישלם שית לא חיי מאי אסותיה מררתא דדיה חיורתא בשיכרא נשפייה ונשקייה האי בר שתא דטריק ליה זיבורא ביומא דמישלם שתא לא חיי מאי אסותיה אצותא דדיקלא במיא נשפייה ונשקייה
The Gemara cites another statement of Abaye in the name of his foster mother. Abaye said: My mother told me that a six-year-old child who is stung by a scorpion on the day that he completes six years will not live without emergency treatment. What is his cure? The bile of a white vulture in beer. One should rub him with this mixture and make him drink it. She further said to him: A one-year-old child who is stung by a hornet on the day that he completes a year will not live without emergency treatment. What is his cure? Palm-tree fiber in water. Again, one should rub him with it and make him drink it.
אמר רב קטינא כל המכניס את בנו פחות מבן שש רץ אחריו ואינו מגיעו איכא דאמרי חביריו רצין אחריו ואין מגיעין אותו ותרוייהו איתנהו חליש וגמיר איבעית אימא הא דכחיש הא דבריא
Rav Ketina said: Anyone who brings his son to school when he is younger than six years old will run after him and not catch him. In other words, he will worry about his welfare for a long time afterward, as the child will be weakened by his studies. There are those who say that his friends will run after him in their studies and not catch him, i.e., his early start will enable him to be far more successful. The Gemara comments: And both are correct; he will weaken physically and learn well. If you wish, say that these two statements can be reconciled differently: This case is dealing with a weak child, who should not be brought to school at such a young age, whereas that statement is referring to a healthy boy, who can go to school at a tender age and succeed in his studies.
אמר רבי יוסי בר חנינא באושא התקינו האשה שמכרה בנכסי מלוג בחיי בעלה ומתה הבעל מוציא מיד הלקוחות אשכחיה רב יצחק בר יוסף לר' אבהו דהוה קאי באוכלוסא דאושא אמר ליה מאן מרה דשמעתא דאושא אמר ליה רבי יוסי בר חנינא תנא מיניה ארבעין זימנין ודמי ליה כמאן דמנחא ליה בכיסתיה
§ Rabbi Yosei bar Ḥanina said: In Usha the Sages instituted that in the case of a woman who sold her usufruct property, which is property that belongs to her but whose produce belongs to her husband, in her husband’s lifetime, and then she died, the husband can repossess it from the purchasers. The Gemara relates: Rav Yitzḥak bar Yosef found Rabbi Abbahu standing among the congregation [ukhlusa] of Usha. He said to him: Who is the Master who disseminated the halakha that was instituted in Usha? He said to him: Rabbi Yosei bar Ḥanina. He learned it from Rabbi Abbahu forty times, and from that point onward he remembered it so well that it seemed to him as though it were placed in his pocket.
(תהלים קו, ג) אשרי שומרי משפט עושה צדקה בכל עת וכי אפשר לעשות צדקה בכל עת דרשו רבותינו שביבנה ואמרי לה רבי אליעזר זה הזן בניו ובנותיו כשהן קטנים רבי שמואל בר נחמני אמר זה המגדל יתום ויתומה בתוך ביתו ומשיאן
The Gemara discusses a point related to one of the ordinances of Usha. The verse states: “Happy are they who keep justice, who perform charity at all times” (Psalms 106:3). But is it possible to perform charity at all times? Is one always in the presence of paupers? Therefore, our Rabbis in Yavne taught, and some say it was Rabbi Eliezer: This is referring to one who sustains his sons and daughters when they are minors. As stated above, he is not formally obligated to support them, and therefore when he does so, it is a form of charity that he gives on a constant basis. Rabbi Shmuel bar Naḥmani said: This is referring to one who raises an orphan boy or an orphan girl in his house, takes care of them, and marries them off.
(תהלים קיב, ג) הון ועושר בביתו וצדקתו עומדת לעד רב הונא ורב חסדא חד אמר זה הלומד תורה ומלמדה וחד אמר זה הכותב תורה נביאים וכתובים ומשאילן לאחרים
The Sages likewise expounded the verse: “Wealth and riches are in his house, and his charity endures forever” (Psalms 112:3). How can one’s wealth and riches remain in his house while his charity endures forever? Rav Huna and Rav Ḥisda disputed this issue. One said: This is referring to one who studies Torah and teaches it. He loses nothing of his own, while his charity toward others will endure. And one said: This is one who writes scrolls of the Torah, the Prophets, and the Writings, and lends them to others. The books remain in his possession, but others gain from his charity.
(תהלים קכח, ו) וראה בנים לבניך שלום על ישראל אמר רבי יהושע בן לוי כיון שבנים לבניך שלום על ישראל דלא אתי לידי חליצה ויבום רבי שמואל בר נחמני אמר כיון שבנים לבניך שלום על דייני ישראל דלא אתי לאינצויי:
With regard to the verse: “And see your son’s sons; peace be upon Israel” (Psalms 128:6), Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi said: Once your children have children of their own, there is peace upon Israel, as they will not come to require the ritual through which the yavam frees the yevama of her levirate bonds [ḥalitza] or levirate marriage, which are necessary only if a man dies childless. Rabbi Shmuel bar Naḥmani said: Once your sons have sons there will be peace upon the judges of Israel, as relatives will not come to quarrel with the judges over the inheritance.
זה מדרש דרש ר"א לפני חכמים כו':
§ The Gemara returns to the mishna: This exposition was expounded by Rabbi Elazar ben Azarya before the Sages in the vineyard of Yavne: Just as the sons inherit only after the father’s death, so too, the daughters are sustained from his property only after their father’s death.