Nedarim 81aנדרים פ״א א
The William Davidson Talmudתלמוד מהדורת ויליאם דוידסון
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81aפ״א א

גוף כולו לא כל שכן אמרי אין כביסה אלימא לר' יוסי דאמר שמואל האי ערבוביתא דרישא מתיא לידי עוירא ערבוביתא דמאני מתיא לידי שעמומיתא ערבוביתא דגופא מתיא לידי שיחני וכיבי

is it not all the more so the case that if one does not bathe, which affects the entire body, Rabbi Yosei would agree that he will suffer pain? The Gemara refutes this argument: The Sages say in response: Yes, the pain of refraining from laundering one’s clothes is stronger, according to Rabbi Yosei, than the pain of not washing one’s body. As Shmuel said: Grime on one’s head leads to blindness, and grime on one’s clothes leads to madness, whereas grime on one’s body leads to boils and sores, which are less serious than madness and blindness. Based on this it may be suggested that according to Rabbi Yosei, soiled clothing presents a greater danger than an unwashed body.

שלחו מתם הזהרו בערבוביתא הזהרו בחבורה הזהרו בבני עניים שמהן תצא תורה שנאמר (במדבר כד, ז) יזל מים מדליו שמהן תצא תורה

§ With regard to this issue, the Gemara relates that the Sages sent the following message from there, i.e., Eretz Yisrael, to Babylonia: Be careful with regard to grime, as it can lead to disease and sickness. Be careful to learn Torah in the company of others, rather than study it alone. And be careful with regard to the education of the sons of paupers, as it is from them that the Torah will issue forth. As it is stated: “Water shall flow from his branches [midalyav]” (Numbers 24:7), which is expounded to mean: From the poor ones [midalim] among him, as it is from them that the Torah, which may be compared to water, will issue forth.

ומפני מה אין מצויין ת"ח לצאת ת"ח מבניהן אמר רב יוסף שלא יאמרו תורה ירושה היא להם רב ששת בריה דרב אידי אומר כדי שלא יתגדרו על הצבור מר זוטרא אומר מפני שהן מתגברין על הצבור רב אשי אומר משום דקרו לאינשי חמרי

With regard to a similar matter, the Gemara inquires: And for what reason is it not common for Torah scholars to give rise to Torah scholars from among their sons? Why are Torah scholars generally born to paupers, who are not Torah scholars themselves? Rav Yosef said: This is so that they should not say the Torah is their inheritance. Therefore, it is unusual to find that all the sons of a Torah scholar are also Torah scholars. Rav Sheshet, son of Rav Idi, said: This is so that they should not be presumptuous [yitgadderu] toward the community, with the knowledge that they will be Torah scholars like their fathers. Mar Zutra said: Because they take advantage of their fathers’ standing to lord over the community and are punished for their conduct. Rav Ashi said: Because they call ordinary people donkeys.

רבינא אומר שאין מברכין בתורה תחלה דאמר רב יהודה אמר רב מאי דכתיב (ירמיהו ט, יא) מי האיש החכם ויבן את זאת דבר זה נשאל לחכמים ולנביאים ולא פירשוהו

Ravina says: They are punished because they do not first recite a blessing over the Torah before commencing their studies. As Rav Yehuda said that Rav said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “Who is the wise man that may understand this, and who is he to whom the mouth of the Lord has spoken, that he may declare it, for what the land is perished and laid waste like a wilderness, so that none passes through” (Jeremiah 9:11)? This matter, the question as to why Eretz Yisrael was destroyed, was asked of the Sages, i.e., “the wise man,” and of the prophets, “he to whom the mouth of the Lord has spoken,” but they could not explain it.

עד שפירשו הקב"ה בעצמו דכתיב (ירמיהו ט, יב) ויאמר ה' על עזבם את תורתי וגו' היינו לא שמעו בקולי היינו לא הלכו בה אמר רב יהודה אמר רב שאין מברכין בתורה תחלה

The matter remained a mystery until the Holy One, Blessed be He, Himself explained why Eretz Yisrael was laid waste, as it is written in the next verse: “And the Lord said: Because they have forsaken My Torah which I set before them, and have not obeyed My voice, nor walked therein” (Jeremiah 9:12). It would appear that “have not obeyed My voice” is the same as “nor walked therein.” Rav Yehuda said that Rav said: The expression “nor walked therein” means that they do not first recite a blessing over the Torah, and they are therefore liable to receive the severe punishments listed in the verse.

איסי בר יהודה לא אתא למתיבתא דר' יוסי תלתא יומי אשכחיה ורדימוס בר' יוסי א"ל מאי טעמא לא אתי מר לבי מדרשא דאבא הא תלתא יומין א"ל כי טעמיה דאבוך לא ידענא היכא איתאי א"ל לימא מר מאי קא"ל דלמא ידענא טעמיה א"ל הא דתניא ר' יוסי אומר כביסתן קודמין לחיי אחרים קרא מנלן

§ Returning to the issue of laundering clothes, the Gemara relates that it once happened that Isi bar Yehuda did not come to the academy of Rabbi Yosei for three straight days. Vardimus, son of Rabbi Yosei, found him and said to him: What is the reason that the Master did not come to Father’s academy these three days? He said to him: When I do not know your father’s reasoning, how can I come? Vardimus said to him: Let the Master say what he, my father, is saying to him; perhaps I know his reasoning. He said to him: With regard to that which is taught in a baraita: Rabbi Yosei says that their own laundry takes precedence over the lives of others, from where do we have a verse that teaches this halakha?

א"ל דכתיב (במדבר לה, ג) ומגרשיהם יהיו לבהמתם וגו' מאי חייתם אילימא חיה והלא חיה בכלל בהמה היא אלא מאי חייתם חיותא ממש פשיטא אלא לאו כביסה דהא איכא צערא דערבוביתא

Vardimus said to him: As it is written with regard to the Levite cities: “And their open land shall be for their animals and for their substance, and for all their beasts” (Numbers 35:3). What is the meaning of “their beasts”? If we say an actual beast, there is a difficulty, as isn’t a beast included in the category of animal, which has already been mentioned in the verse? Rather, what is the meaning of “their beasts [ḥayyatam]”? It means their actual lives [ḥiyyuta]. This, however, is difficult, as it is obvious that the Levites received their cities in order to live their lives there. Rather, is it not referring to laundering clothes, as there is the pain caused by the grime on one’s unwashed clothes? Since it is vitally necessary for their well-being, laundering the clothing of the city’s residents takes precedence over the lives of others.

א"ר יוסי אין אלו נדרי עינוי נפש איבעיא להו לר' יוסי מהו שיפר משום דברים שבינו לבינה ת"ש א"ר יוסי אין אלו נדרי עינוי נפש אבל דברים שבינו לבינה הויין

§ With regard to the vows: If I bathe, and: If I do not bathe, and: If I adorn myself, and: If I do not adorn myself, Rabbi Yosei said in the mishna that these are not vows of affliction. A dilemma was raised before the Sages: According to Rabbi Yosei, what is the halakha as to whether the husband can nullify these vows as matters that adversely affect the relationship between him and her? The Gemara suggests: Come and hear a resolution to this question from what Rabbi Yosei said: These are not vows of affliction, which indicates, however, that they are matters that affect the relationship between him and her.

דלמא לדידהו קאמר להו לדידי אפי' דברים שבינו לבינה לא הויין לדידכו דאמריתו הויין נדרי עינוי נפש אודו לי דאין אלו נדרי עינוי נפש

The Gemara refutes this proof: Perhaps Rabbi Yosei was speaking to the Rabbis in accordance with their own opinion, as follows: According to my opinion, they are not even matters that affect the relationship between him and her. But according to your opinion, that you say that they are vows of affliction, agree with me at least that these are not vows of affliction. In other words, one should not infer from the phrasing of Rabbi Yosei’s response to the Rabbis that he holds that these vows are concerning matters that affect the relationship between him and her, as he was merely countering the claim of the Rabbis that they are vows of affliction.

מאי רב אדא בר אהבה אומר מפר רב הונא אומר אין מפר

The question therefore remains: What does Rabbi Yosei maintain in this regard? Rav Adda bar Ahava says: He can nullify these vows as matters between him and her, whereas Rav Huna says: He cannot nullify them.