Sanhedrin 66aסנהדרין ס״ו א
The William Davidson Talmudתלמוד מהדורת ויליאם דוידסון
Save 'Sanhedrin 66a'
Toggle Reader Menu Display Settings
66aס״ו א

אל תתחיל בי שחרית הוא ראש חודש הוא מוצאי שבת הוא

The term is also referring to one who says to a collector of charity: Do not collect from me first, as that is a bad sign for me; or: Do not collect from me now because it is morning, and it is a bad sign to begin the day with a loss; or: Do not collect from me now because it is the New Moon, and it is a bad sign to begin the month with a loss; or: It is the conclusion of Shabbat and I do not want to begin the week with a loss.

תנו רבנן (ויקרא יט, כו) לא תנחשו ולא תעוננו כגון אלו המנחשים בחולדה בעופות ובדגים:

The Sages taught that the verse: “Nor shall you practice divination nor soothsaying” (Leviticus 19:26), is referring, for example, to those who divine and receive guidance according to what happens to a weasel, to birds, or to fish.

מתני׳ המחלל את השבת בדבר שחייבין על זדונו כרת ועל שגגתו חטאת:

MISHNA: Also liable to be executed by stoning is one who desecrates Shabbat by performing a matter that for its intentional performance one is liable to receive karet and for its unwitting performance one is obligated to bring a sin-offering.

גמ׳ מכלל דאיכא מידי דחילול שבת הוי ואין חייבין לא על שגגתו חטאת ולא על זדונו כרת מאי

GEMARA: By inference, there is another matter that is a desecration of Shabbat, and it is prohibited by the Torah, but for its unwitting performance one is not obligated to bring a sin-offering, nor does one receive karet for its intentional performance. Otherwise, the statement in the mishna that one is liable for desecrating Shabbat for performing an act for which one receives karet or is obligated to bring a sin-offering would have been superfluous.

היא תחומין ואליבא דרבי עקיבא הבערה ואליבא דר' יוסי:

The Gemara asks: What is the labor activity that desecrates Shabbat but whose punishment is not so severe? The Gemara answers: It is the prohibition against going outside the Shabbat boundaries, which are two thousand cubits beyond a person’s location at the beginning of Shabbat, and it is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Akiva, who holds that although it is a Torah prohibition one is neither obligated to bring a sin-offering for violating it unwittingly nor liable to be executed for violating it intentionally. Alternatively, it may be referring to the prohibition against kindling a fire on Shabbat in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yosei, who holds that contrary to other labors prohibited on Shabbat, this act is not punishable by stoning but by lashes.

מתני׳ המקלל אביו ואמו אינו חייב עד שיקללם בשם קללם בכנוי ר' מאיר מחייב וחכמים פוטרין:

MISHNA: One who curses his father or his mother is not liable to be executed by stoning unless he curses them with the name of God. If he cursed them with an appellation of the name of God, Rabbi Meir deems him liable, and the Rabbis deem him exempt.

גמ׳ מאן חכמים ר' מנחם בר' יוסי הוא דתניא ר' מנחם בר' יוסי אומר (ויקרא כד, טז) בנקבו שם יומת מה ת"ל שם לימד על מקלל אביו ואמו שאינו חייב עד שיקללם בשם

GEMARA: Who are the Rabbis mentioned here? It is Rabbi Menaḥem, son of Rabbi Yosei. As it is taught in a baraita that Rabbi Menaḥem, son of Rabbi Yosei, says: The verse states: “And he who blasphemes the name of the Lord shall be put to death; all the congregation shall stone him; the convert as well as the homeborn, when he blasphemes the name he shall be put to death” (Leviticus 24:16). Why must the verse state “the name” a second time, which appears to be a superfluous repetition? This term taught concerning one who transgresses other prohibitions of cursing, e.g., one who curses his father or his mother, that he is not liable to be executed by stoning unless he curses them with the name of God. If he merely uses an appellation, he is exempt.

תנו רבנן איש מה ת"ל (ויקרא כ, ב) איש איש לרבות בת טומטום ואנדרוגינוס

The Sages taught: The verse (Leviticus 20:9) could have stated merely: For a man [ish] that curses his father and his mother shall be put to death; he has cursed his father and his mother; his blood shall be upon him. Why must the verse state: “For any man [ish ish],” repeating the term ish? It is to include not only a son, but also a daughter, one whose sexual organs are indeterminate [tumtum], and a hermaphrodite [ve’androginos].

אשר יקלל את אביו ואת אמו אין לי אלא אביו ואמו אביו שלא אמו אמו שלא אביו מניין ת"ל אביו ואמו קילל דמיו בו אביו קילל אמו קילל דברי רבי יאשיה

When the verse states: “That curses his father and his mother,” I have derived only his liability for cursing both his father and his mother. From where do I derive that if one curses his father but not his mother, or his mother but not his father, that he is liable? The continuation of the verse states: “His father and his mother he has cursed; his blood is upon him.” In the first part of the verse, the word “curses” is in proximity to “his father,” and in the last part of the verse, it is in proximity to “his mother.” This teaches that the verse is referring both to a case where he cursed only his father and to a case where he cursed only his mother; this is the statement of Rabbi Yoshiya.

רבי יונתן אומר משמע שניהן כאחד ומשמע אחד בפני עצמו עד שיפרוט לך הכתוב יחדיו

Rabbi Yonatan says: There is no need for this derivation, because the phrase “his father and his mother” teaches that one is liable if he curses both of them together, and it also teaches that he is liable if he curses either one of them on their own, unless the verse specifies that one is liable only when he curses both together, which it does not do in this case.

מות יומת בסקילה אתה אומר בסקילה או אינו אלא באחת מכל מיתות האמורות בתורה נאמר כאן דמיו בו ונאמר להלן (ויקרא כ, יא) דמיהם בם מה להלן בסקילה אף כאן בסקילה

From the phrase “shall be put to death” it is derived that his punishment is execution by stoning. The baraita asks: Do you say that that they are executed by stoning, or is it rather by one of all the other types of death penalty stated in the Torah? The baraita answers: It is stated here: “His blood shall be upon him,” and it is stated below, with regard to a necromancer and a sorcerer: “They shall be put to death; they shall stone them with stones; their blood shall be upon them” (Leviticus 20:27). Just as there the verse states that a necromancer and a sorcerer are executed by stoning, so too here, with regard to one who curses his father or mother, he is executed by stoning.

עונש שמענו אזהרה מניין ת"ל (שמות כב, כז) אלהים לא תקלל וגו' אם היה אביו דיין הרי הוא בכלל אלהים לא תקלל ואם היה אביו נשיא הרי הוא בכלל (שמות כב, כז) ונשיא בעמך לא תאור

The baraita asks: We have learned the punishment of one who curses his parent; from where is the prohibition against doing so derived? The verse states: “You shall not blaspheme judges [elohim], nor curse a king of your people” (Exodus 22:27). If his father was a judge, cursing him is included in the prohibition of: “You shall not blaspheme judges,” as it is prohibited for all people to curse a judge. And if his father was a king, cursing him is included in the prohibition of: “Nor curse a king of your people.”

אינו לא דיין ולא נשיא מניין אמרת הרי אתה דן בנין אב משניהן לא ראי נשיא כראי דיין ולא ראי דיין כראי נשיא

If he is neither a judge nor a king, from where is it derived that it is prohibited to curse him? One can say: You derive it through a paradigm arrived at from both of them as follows: The defining characteristic of a king is not like the defining characteristic of a judge, and the defining characteristic of a judge is not like the defining characteristic of a king. The two cases are dissimilar.

לא ראי דיין כראי נשיא שהרי דיין אתה מצווה על הוראתו כראי נשיא שאי אתה מצווה על הוראתו ולא ראי נשיא כראי דיין שהנשיא אתה מצווה על המראתו כראי דיין שאי אתה מצווה על המראתו

The baraita elaborates: The defining characteristic of a judge is not like the defining characteristic of a king, as with regard to a judge, you are commanded with regard to obeying his halakhic ruling. This is not like the defining characteristic of a king, with regard to whose halakhic ruling you are not commanded to obey. And the defining characteristic of a king is not like the defining characteristic of a judge, as with regard to the king, you are commanded with regard to rebelling against him, i.e., refusing to obey his order. This is not like the defining characteristic of a judge, as you are not commanded with regard to rebelling against him.

הצד השוה שבהם שהן בעמך ואתה מוזהר על קללתן אף אני אביא אביך שבעמך ואתה מוזהר על קללתו

Their common denominator is that they are “of your people,” i.e., they are members of the Jewish people, and you are prohibited from cursing them. I too will include the case of your father, as he is “of your people,” and therefore you are prohibited from cursing him.

מה להצד השוה שבהן שכן גדולתן גרמה להן

This derivation is insufficient, as what is notable about their common denominator, i.e., another element that they share in common? It is notable in that their prominence has caused them to be entitled to an exceptional degree of respect; they are not merely “of your people.” Therefore, perhaps the prohibition against cursing applies only to such prominent figures.

ת"ל (ויקרא יט, יד) לא תקלל חרש באומללים שבעמך הכתוב מדבר

The baraita continues: Consequently, a third case is necessary to arrive at the required paradigm. The verse states: “You shall not curse the deaf, nor put a stumbling block before the blind” (Leviticus 19:14). The verse speaks of the wretched of your people. From the fact that it is prohibited to curse even those people, it can be derived that it is prohibited to curse anyone.

מה לחרש שכן חרישתו גרמה לו

Deriving this halakha from the case of a deaf person is also insufficient, as what is notable about the case of a deaf person? It is notable in that his deafness has caused cursing him to be prohibited. Perhaps the only reason it is prohibited to curse him is that he is deaf, just as it is prohibited to mislead the blind.

נשיא ודיין יוכיחו מה לנשיא ודיין שכן גדולתן גרמה להן חרש יוכיח

One can respond: The prohibition against cursing a king and a judge can prove that it is prohibited to curse anyone, as it is prohibited to curse them even though they are not wretched. And if the proof from these cases is rejected, as one can claim that what is notable about a king and a judge is that their prominence has caused them to be entitled to this respect, then the prohibition against cursing the deaf can prove that prominence is not a determining factor.

וחזר הדין לא ראי זה כראי זה ולא ראי זה כראי זה הצד השוה שבהן שהן בעמך ואתה מוזהר על קללתן אף אני אביא אביך שבעמך ואתה מוזהר על קללתו

And the inference has reverted to its starting point. At this point the halakha is derived from a combination of the three cases: The defining characteristic of this case, i.e., that of a ruler and a judge, is not like the defining characteristic of that case, i.e., that of a deaf person, and the defining characteristic of that case is not like the defining characteristic of this case; their common denominator is that they are “of your people,” and you are prohibited from cursing them. I too will include the case of your father, who is “of your people,” and therefore you are prohibited from cursing him.

מה לצד השוה שבהן שכן משונין

The baraita refutes this derivation: What is notable about their common dominator? It is notable in that they are unusual, i.e., they are not common people, but they are in some way different from others. Perhaps there is no prohibition against cursing an ordinary person.

אלא א"כ נכתוב קרא או אלהים וחרש או נשיא וחרש אלהים למה לי אם אינו ענין לגופו תנהו ענין לאביו

Rather, this proof is insufficient, and the baraita states a different explanation: If it is so that it is prohibited to curse only unusual people, let the verse write either that it is prohibited to curse judges and the deaf, or that it is prohibited to curse a king and the deaf, and it would have been derived from these two cases that the prohibition applies to all unusual people. Why do I need the verse to state a special prohibition with regard to judges? It is superfluous, as judges are also extraordinary people. Rather, if the verse is not needed for its own matter, i.e., the prohibition against cursing judges, apply it to the matter of cursing one’s father.

הניחא למאן דאמר אלהים חול אלא למאן דאמר קודש מאי איכא למימר

The Gemara asks: This works out well according to the one who says that in the verse: “You shall not blaspheme elohim” (Exodus 22:27), the word elohim” is non-sacred, as it is referring to judges. But according to the one who says that the word is sacred, as it is referring to God, what can be said? If the verse is not superfluous, as it is needed to state a special prohibition with regard to God, how is the prohibition against cursing one’s parents derived from it?

דתניא אלהים חול דברי רבי ישמעאל רבי עקיבא אומר אלהים קודש ותניא רבי אליעזר בן יעקב אומר אזהרה למברך את השם מניין תלמוד לומר אלהים לא תקלל

As it is taught in a baraita: The word elohim in this verse is non-sacred; this is the statement of Rabbi Yishmael. Rabbi Akiva says: The word Elohim” is sacred. And it is taught in a different baraita that Rabbi Eliezer ben Ya’akov says: From where is the prohibition against one who blesses, i.e., curses, the name of God, derived? The verse states: “You shall not blaspheme God [Elohim].”

למ"ד אלהים חול גמר קודש מחול למ"ד אלהים קודש גמרינן חול מקודש

The Gemara answers: According to the one who says that elohim” is non-sacred, he derives the prohibition according to the sacred meaning of the word from the non-sacred meaning, i.e., he derives the prohibition against cursing God from the prohibition against cursing judges. According to the one who says that Elohim” is sacred, we derive the prohibition according to the non-sacred meaning of the word from the sacred meaning, i.e., he derives the prohibition against cursing judges from the prohibition against cursing God.

בשלמא למ"ד אלהים חול גמר קודש מחול אלא למ"ד אלהים קודש גמר חול מקודש דילמא אקודש אזהר אחול לא אזהר

The Gemara asks: Granted, according to the one who says that elohim” is non-sacred, he can derive the prohibition according to the sacred meaning of the word from the non-sacred meaning through an a fortiori inference. But according to the one who says that Elohim” is sacred, can he derive the prohibition according to the non-sacred meaning from the sacred meaning? Perhaps the Torah renders it prohibited to curse God, in accordance with the sacred meaning of the word, but it does not render it prohibited to curse elohim, judges, in accordance with the non-sacred meaning.

א"כ לכתוב קרא לא תקל

The Gemara answers: If so, if it is prohibited to curse God but not judges, let the verse write: You shall not treat lightly [takel], instead of: “You shall not blaspheme [tekallel]”; it would have been derived from this wording that is prohibited to demean or curse God.