Shabbat 23a:2שבת כ״ג א
The William Davidson Talmudתלמוד מהדורת ויליאם דוידסון
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23aכ״ג א

עששית שהיתה דולקת והולכת כל היום כולו למוצאי שבת מכבה ומדליקה אי אמרת בשלמא הדלקה עושה מצוה שפיר אלא אי אמרת הנחה עושה מצוה האי מכבה ומדליקה מכבה ומגביהה ומניחה ומדליקה מיבעי ליה ועוד מדקא מברכינן אשר קדשנו במצותיו וצונו להדליק נר של חנוכה שמע מינה הדלקה עושה מצוה שמע מינה

A lantern that continued to burn the entire day of Shabbat, at the conclusion of Shabbat one extinguishes it and lights it again as a Hanukkah light. Granted, if you say that lighting accomplishes the mitzva, the requirement to extinguish the lantern and relight it in order to fulfill the mitzva of kindling the Hanukkah light works out well. However, if you say that placing accomplishes the mitzva, this statement, which stated that one extinguishes it and lights it, is imprecise. According to this opinion, it needed to say: One extinguishes it and lifts it from its place and sets it down and lights it, as only by placing the lamp in an appropriate place could one fulfill the mitzva of the Hanukkah light. Furthermore, there is additional proof that lighting accomplishes the mitzva. From the fact that we recite the following blessing over the mitzva of kindling the Hanukkah light: Who has made us holy through His commandments and has commanded us to light the Hanukkah light, the Gemara suggests: Conclude from this that lighting accomplishes the mitzva, as it is over lighting that one recites the blessing. The Gemara concludes: Indeed, conclude from this.

והשתא דאמרינן הדלקה עושה מצוה הדליקה חרש שוטה וקטן לא עשה ולא כלום אשה ודאי מדליקה דאמר רבי יהושע בן לוי נשים חייבות בנר חנוכה שאף הן היו באותו הנס:

And, the Gemara remarks, now that we say that lighting accomplishes the mitzva, there are practical ramifications. If a deaf-mute, an imbecile, or a minor, all of whom are of limited intellectual capacity and not obligated in mitzvot, kindled the Hanukkah light, he did nothing in terms of fulfilling the mitzva, even if an adult obligated in mitzvot subsequently set it down in its appropriate place. That is because placing a lit lamp does not constitute fulfillment of the mitzva. The lighting must be performed by a person with full intellectual capacity, obligated in mitzvot. However, a woman certainly may light, as Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi said: Women are obligated in lighting the Hanukkah light, as they too were included in that miracle of being saved from the decree of persecution.

אמר רב ששת אכסנאי חייב בנר חנוכה אמר רבי זירא מריש כי הוינא בי רב משתתפנא בפריטי בהדי אושפיזא בתר דנסיבי איתתא אמינא השתא ודאי לא צריכנא דקא מדליקי עלי בגו ביתאי:

Rav Sheshet said: A guest is obligated in lighting the Hanukkah light in the place where he is being hosted. The Gemara relates that Rabbi Zeira said: At first, when I was studying in the yeshiva, I would participate with perutot, copper coins, together with the host [ushpiza], so that I would be a partner in the light that he kindled. After I married my wife, I said: Now I certainly need not do so because they light on my behalf in my house.

אמר רבי יהושע בן לוי כל השמנים כולן יפין לנר ושמן זית מן המובחר אמר אביי מריש הוה מהדר מר אמשחא דשומשמי אמר האי משך נהורי טפי כיון דשמע לה להא דרבי יהושע בן לוי מהדר אמשחא דזיתא אמר האי צליל נהוריה טפי

Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi said: All the oils are suitable for the Hanukkah lamp, and olive oil is the most select of the oils. Abaye said: At first, my Master, Rabba, would seek sesame oil, as he said: The light of sesame oil lasts longer and does not burn as quickly as olive oil. Once he heard that statement of Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi, he sought olive oil because he said: Its light is clearer.

ואמר רבי יהושע בן לוי כל השמנים יפין לדיו ושמן זית מן המובחר איבעיא להו לגבל או לעשן תא שמע דתני רב שמואל בר זוטרי כל השמנים יפין לדיו ושמן זית מן המובחר בין לגבל בין לעשן רב שמואל בר זוטרא מתני הכי כל העשנים יפין לדיו ושמן זית מן המובחר אמר רב הונא כל השרפין יפין לדיו ושרף קטף יפה מכולם:

On a similar note, Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi said: All the oils are suitable for making ink, and olive oil is the most select. A dilemma was raised before the Sages: What was Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi’s intention: Did he mean that olive oil is the most select in terms of being the best for use to mix and knead with the soot produced from a fire in manufacturing ink; or did he mean for use to smoke, i.e., burning olive oil to produce smoke is the most select method of producing the soot used in manufacturing ink? Come and hear a resolution to this from that which Rav Shmuel bar Zutrei taught: All oils are suitable for ink, and olive oil is the most select, both to knead and to smoke. Rav Shmuel bar Zutra taught it this way: All types of smoke are good for ink, and olive oil is the most select. Similarly, Rav Huna said: All saps are good for strengthening the ink compound, and balsam sap is the best of all.

אמר רב חייא בר אשי אמר רב המדליק נר של חנוכה צריך לברך ורב ירמיה אמר הרואה נר של חנוכה צריך לברך אמר רב יהודה יום ראשון הרואה מברך שתים ומדליק מברך שלש מכאן ואילך מדליק מברך שתים ורואה מברך אחת מאי ממעט ממעט זמן ונימעוט נס נס כל יומי איתיה

Rav Ḥiyya bar Ashi said that Rav said: One who lights a Hanukkah light must recite a blessing. And Rabbi Yirmeya said: One who sees a burning Hanukkah light must recite a blessing because the mitzva is not only to kindle the light but to see the light as well. Therefore, there is room to recite a blessing even when seeing them. Rav Yehuda said: On the first day of Hanukkah, the one who sees burning lights recites two blessings, and the one who lights recites three blessings. From there on, from the second day of Hanukkah, the one who lights recites two blessings, and the one who sees recites one blessing. The Gemara asks: What blessing does he omit on the other days? The Gemara answers: He omits the blessing of time: Who has given us life, sustained us, and brought us to this time. The Gemara asks: And let us omit the blessing of the miracle: Who has performed miracles. The Gemara answers: The miracle is relevant on all of the days, whereas the blessing: Who has given us life, is only pertinent to the first time he performs the mitzva each year.

מאי מברך מברך אשר קדשנו במצותיו וצונו להדליק נר של חנוכה והיכן צונו רב אויא אמר מלא תסור רב נחמיה אמר שאל אביך ויגדך זקניך ויאמרו לך

And what blessing does one recite? He recites: Who has made us holy through His commandments and has commanded us to light the Hanukkah light. The Gemara asks: And where did He command us? The mitzva of Hanukkah is not mentioned in the Torah, so how is it possible to say that it was commanded to us by God? The Gemara answers that Rav Avya said: The obligation to recite this blessing is derived from the verse: “You shall not turn aside from the sentence which they shall declare unto you, to the right, nor to the left” (Deuteronomy 17:11). From this verse, the mitzva incumbent upon all of Israel to heed the statements and decrees of the Sages is derived. Therefore, one who fulfills their directives fulfills a divine commandment. Rav Neḥemya said that the mitzva to heed the voice of the Elders of Israel is derived from the verse: “Ask your father, and he will declare unto you, your Elders, and they will tell you” (Deuteronomy 32:7).

מתיב רב עמרם הדמאי מערבין בו ומשתתפין בו ומברכין עליו ומזמנין עליו ומפרישין אותו ערום ובין השמשות ואי אמרת כל מדרבנן בעי ברכה הכא כי קאי ערום היכי מברך והא בעינן והיה מחניך קדוש וליכא אמר אביי ודאי דדבריהם בעי ברכה ספק דדבריהם לא בעי ברכה

Rav Amram raised an objection from that which we learned in a mishna: With regard to doubtfully tithed produce [demai], i.e., grain that was acquired from an am haaretz about which there is uncertainty whether or not he tithed it; one may use it to establish an eiruv, i.e., joining of courtyards and joining of borders, and to establish the merging of alleys, and one recites a blessing before and after eating it, and one invites a quorum for recitation of Grace after Meals after eating it. Although the Sages said that one is required to separate tithes from demai, they allowed it to be used for specific purposes and in exigent circumstances. And they said that one may separate the tithe from demai when he is naked and at dusk Shabbat eve, a time when separating tithes from actual untithed produce [tevel] is prohibited. And if you say that every action instituted by rabbinic ordinance requires a blessing, as fulfillment of rabbinic ordinances is based on the mitzva: You shall not turn aside, here, when he stands naked, how can he recite a blessing? Don’t we require fulfillment of the mitzva: “Therefore shall your camp be holy; that He see no unseemly thing in you, and turn away from you” (Deuteronomy 23:15)? And the camp is not holy when one recites a blessing in a state of nakedness. Abaye said: There is room to distinguish between the cases: In a case where there is a definite mitzva by rabbinic law, a blessing is required. In a case where there is a rabbinic ordinance instituted due to uncertainty with regard to the circumstances, as in the case of demai, which may or may not have been tithed already, a blessing is not required.

והא יום טוב שני דספק דבריהם הוא ובעי ברכה התם כי היכי דלא לזילזולי בה רבא אמר רוב עמי הארץ מעשרין הן:

The Gemara asks: Isn’t the second day of a Festival in the Diaspora a rabbinic ordinance instituted due to uncertainty whether the first day or the second is the actual Festival, and nevertheless a blessing is required? On the second day of the Festival one recites the same blessings as he does on the first. The Gemara answers: There, in the case of the second day of the Festival, the reason that blessings are required is so that people will not treat it with contempt. If Festival blessings were not required on the second day of the Festival, people would take its sanctity lightly. Rava said another reason: Demai is not considered to be an ordinance instituted by the Sages due to uncertainty. In fact, in most cases, an am haaretz tithes. The concern lest they do not tithe is not a full-fledged case of uncertainty. It is merely a case of suspicion for which the Sages did not institute a blessing. That is not the case with regard to the second day of a Festival. Even though it was instituted due to uncertainty, one must recite the Festival blessings. Since it was instituted by the Sages, one is obligated to recite a blessing just as he recites blessings for other rabbinic ordinances.

אמר רב הונא חצר שיש לה שני פתחים צריכה שתי נרות (ואמר) רבא לא אמרן אלא משתי רוחות אבל מרוח אחת לא צריך מאי טעמא אילימא משום חשדא חשדא דמאן אילימא חשדא דעלמא אפילו ברוח אחת נמי ליבעי אי חשדא דבני מתא אפילו משני רוחות נמי לא ליבעי לעולם משום חשדא דבני מתא וזימנין דמחלפי בהאי ולא חלפי בהאי ואמרי כי היכי דבהאי פיתחא לא אדליק בהך פיתחא נמי לא אדליק

Rav Huna said: A courtyard that has two entrances requires two lamps, one lamp at each entrance, so that it will be obvious that the residents of this courtyard light properly. And Rava said: We only said this in a case where the two entrances face two different directions. However, if they both face in the same direction one need not light at more than one entrance. The Gemara clarifies Rava’s statement: What is the reason for this? If you say that it is because those who see the entrance without a lamp burning will harbor suspicion lest he does not kindle the Hanukkah light, whose suspicion concerns us? If you say that the concern is with regard to the suspicion of people who do not live in the city and are unfamiliar with the courtyard’s tenants, even when both entrances face the same direction let them be required to light at both entrances because visitors are unaware that there are two entrances to that courtyard. And if the concern is with regard to the suspicion of the residents of that city, even when the two entrances face two different directions let them not be required to light at both entrances. The local residents know that only one person lives in the courtyard and will assume that if he did not light at one entrance he surely lit at the other. The Gemara answers: Actually, say that it is because of the suspicion of the residents of that city, and sometimes they pass this entrance and do not pass that one, and they say: Just as he did not light in this entrance, in that second entrance he also did not light. In order to avoid suspicion, it is preferable to light at both entrances.

ומנא תימרא דחיישינן לחשד דתניא אמר רבי שמעון בשביל ארבעה דברים אמרה תורה להניח פיאה בסוף שדהו מפני גזל עניים ומפני ביטול עניים ומפני החשד ומשום בל תכלה מפני גזל עניים שלא יראה בעל הבית שעה פנוייה ויאמר לקרובו עני הרי זו פאה

And from where do you say that we are concerned about suspicion? As it was taught in a Tosefta that Rabbi Shimon said: On account of four things the Torah said that one should leave pea, crops for the poor in the corner of his field, specifically at the end of his field. Only after one has cut virtually the entire field should he leave an uncut corner for the poor. He should not designate an area for pea in the middle of the field in the course of cutting the field. The reasons for this ruling are: Due to robbing the poor, and due to causing the poor to be idle, and due to suspicion, and due to the verse: “You shall not wholly reap the corner of your field” (Leviticus 23:22). The Gemara explains: Due to robbing the poor; so that the owner of the house will not see a time when the field is unoccupied and there are no poor people in the area. If he could designate pea as he wished, there is room to suspect that he might say to his poor relative: This is pea, in the place and at the time that he chooses. He would thereby conceal the fact that there is pea in his field from other poor people. The result would be that, for all intents and purposes, he robbed pea from those with whom he did not share the information.