(Permission is granted to print and redistribute this material
as long as this header and the footer at the end are included.)


prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem

Previous daf

Avodah Zarah 17



(a) According to the second Lashon, "Harchek me'Alehah Darkech" refers both to Miynus and to the Rashus, whereas "ve'Al Tikrav el Pesach Beisah" refers to - the house of a harlot.

(b) One should remain - at least four Amos away from them, says Rav Chisda.

(c) The Rabbanan who disagree with Rebbi Eliezer (and with Ya'akov Ish K'far S'chanya) learn from the Pasuk "Ki me'Esnan Zonah Kaftzah ve'Ad Esnan Yashuvu" like the Drashah of Rav Chisda, who learns from the Pasuk "u've'Sitech Esnan ve'Esnan Lo Niten Lecha va'Tehi le'Hefech" - that eventually, people will become so disgusted with a Zonah, that instead of them hiring her, she will have to hire them.

(d) Rebbi P'das disagrees with Rav Chisda, who requires a distance of four Amos from a Zonah. He extrapolates from the Pasuk "Ish Ish el Kol She'er Besaro Lo Sikrevu Legalos Ervah" - that the Torah forbids only the actual act of Z'nus, and nothing else (see Tosfos DH 'u'Peliga').

(a) When Ula came out of Shul - he would kiss his sisters on the back of their hands on their chests as a mark of respect (see Ya'avetz).

(b) This appears to clash with a statement that he himself made - forbidding close physical contact with Arayos, such as kissing and embracing (see Tosfos DH 'u'Peliga' and Maharsha).

(c) And he learns this from Chazal - who advised a Nazir to rather circumvent a vineyard than go through it (in order to keep his distance from the Isur.

(a) Assuming that 'Alukah' means Gehinom, its two daughters who scream 'Hav Hav' in this world, says Rav Chisda Amar Mar Ukva, are the Miynim and the members of the Rashus.

(b) The former scream 'Hav Hav' - for more sacrifices, the latter, for more money in the form of gifts and taxes.

(c) They now scream from Gehinom - in pain.

(d) In the second Lashon, it is - Gehinom who screams 'Hav Hav' for the Miynim and the Rashus.

(a) We learn from the Pasuk ...
1. ... "Kol Ba'ehah Lo Yeshuvun" - that close adherents of Avodah-Zarah do not do Teshuvah.
2. ... "ve'Lo Yasigu Orchos Chayim" - that if with great difficulty, they do, they die at once from grief.
(b) The reason for this - is not based on logic, but upon Divine decree.

(c) That woman confessed before Rav Chisda - that the least of her sins was that her youngest son was fathered by her oldest son.

(d) Rav Chisda expected her to die - because she was also guilty of Miynus (as we shall soon see), and that is what is destined to happen to Miynim who do Teshuvah.

(a) We extrapolate from the fact that she referred to that sin as 'Kalah she'be'Kalos' - that she must have been guilty of something that was even worse (namely Miynus).

(b) The fact that she did not die poses a Kashya on what we just learned - that immediate death is inevitable.

(c) We solve this problem - by pointing out that her Teshuvah was not absolute.

(d) According to the second Lashon, the woman did indeed die, because of Miynus and not from the sin of incest - because otherwise of what significance is the fact that she was guilty of Miynus too.

(a) Elazar ben Durdaya - was familiar with every Zonah who lived in his time. He once traveled overseas with a cupful of Dinrim - to meet a Zonah who demanded that price.

(b) After letting wind, the Zonah declared - that just as the wind will never return to its place, so too, will Elazar ben Durdaya never be allowed to return to his place (to do Teshuvah). This issued him with a challenge, which he took up.

(c) When he began to do Teshuvah - he placed himself between two mountains.

(d) The mountains refused to Daven for him and so did Heaven and earth (because they had enough on their plate Davening for themselves). He met with the same response - when he asked first the sun and the moon, and then the stars and the constellations, to Daven for him.

(a) Elazar ben Durdaya arrives at the conclusion - that if nobody else would Daven for him, then he would Daven for himself.

(b) So he placed his head between his knees and wept until he died.

(c) This seems to clash with what we said earlier - that it is Miynim who are destined to die, but not people who are guilty of other sins (including adultery).

(d) We resolve this apparent discrepancy - by establishing that Elazar ben Durdaya was exceptionally attached to that sin (and was therefore comparable to a Miyn).

(a) When Elazar ben Doorway died - the bas-Kol announced - that Rebbi Elazar ben Doorway was ready to enter Olam ha'Ba.

(b) Besides 'Yesh Koneh Olamo be'Kamah Shanim ... ', Rebbi added - that Ba'alei Yeshiva, it seems adopt the title 'Rebbi' in Olam ha'Ba (something that he did not announce on the previous occasion, when he was talking about a Nochri).




(a) Rebbi Chanina and Rebbi Yonasan were traveling together on a journey. The dilemma that faced them was which road to take - the road that passed the Beis Avodah-Zarah or the road that passed a brothel.

(b) One of them suggested that they take the road that passed the Beis Avodah-Zarah, rather than the one that passed the brothel - in order to minimize the Nisayon (bearing in mind that Ezra and his Beis-Din had already prayed for the Yetzer-ha'Ra for Avodah-Zarah to be removed).

(c) The other one argued - that it was better to take the road that passed the brothel (see Tosfos DH 'Neizel') and to overcome their Yetzer-ha'Ra.

(d) He based this decision on the Pasuk "mi'Zimah Tishmor Alach, Tevunah Sintzerekah", which the Rabbanan explained in front of Rava to mean - that Torah (hinted in the latter phrase) saves from immoral thoughts and situations.

(e) The Pasuk cannot mean that Torah which is called 'Zimah' (which Unklus in Chumash translates as 'Atzas Chet'in' [and Yeshayah refers to Torah as "Eitzah", advice]) will guard you - because then the Torah ought to have written ''Zimah Tishmor Alach ... " (without the 'Mem').

(a) When Rebbi Elazar ben P'rata and Rebbi Chanina ben T'radyon were both taken by the Romans, the former thought that the latter was more fortunate than him - because he was taken in for only one 'sin', whilst *he* was taken in for five.

(b) To which Rebbi Chanina ben T'radyon replied - that in fact - Rebbi Elazar ben P'rata was destined to be set free, whilst he was not, because whereas the latter had combined Torah with Chesed, he had not.

(c) Rav Huna describes someone who studies Torah but who does not indulge in Chesed - as someone who has no G-d ("le'Lo Elokim Emes").

(a) Rebbi Eliezer ben Ya'akov stated that one should not donate money to a Tzedakah-fund unless the person who runs it - is of the caliber of Rebbi Chanina ben T'radyon (implying that he was indeed a Gabai-Tzedakah).

(b) But Rebbi Chanina ben T'radyon just testified about himself - that whereas he studied Torah, he did not indulge in Chesed

(c) We reject the answer that Rebbi Eliezer ben Ya'akov was only presenting Rebbi Chanina ben T'radyon as the epitome of integrity, but that in reality, he did not deal with matters of Tzedakah - from a statement of Rebbi Chanina ben T'radyon (which will be explained on the following Amud) where he stated that money that he had designated for Purim got mixed up with the money of the Tzedakah-fund and he had distributed it all to the poor (from which we see that he was a Gabai Tzedakah after all).

(d) So we resolve the problem - by explaining Rebbi Chanina ben T'radyon's statement to mean - that as opposed to Rebbi Elazar ben P'rata, he had not performed the Mitzvah of Tzedakah to the extent that he should have done.

(a) Rebbi Elazar ben P'ratas reply, when the Romans ...
1. ... accused him of learning Torah and stealing, was - that 'It is either the sword or the book. It cannot be both!' (It is inconceivable that someone who learns Torah should be a thief). And since the one accusation had to be false, so did the other. 2. ... asked him why he was called Rebbi, was - that he was the Rebbe (the teacher) of the weavers.
(b) The Romans challenged this claim - by bringing two balls of wool and asking him to identify which was the woof and which was the warp.

(c) He managed to identify them, despite his total ignorance in these matters - when a female bee settled (miraculously) on the warp (which receives the woof, like a female receives the male) and a male bee on the woof.

(d) And when they asked him why he ...

1. ... failed to attend the 'Bei Avidan' (a gathering in honor of their gods, where they would eat and drink and discuss ways of improving its service), he replied that he was afraid that, due to his age, he would be trampled to death in the crowd.
2. ... had set free his Eved Cana'ani (in spite of the law forbidding it) - denied having done so.
(a) When they asked him how many old men he knew of had been trampled to death at the 'Bei Avidan' - a miracle occurred and they heard the news that an old man was indeed trampled to death that day.

(b) When a witness got up to testify that Rebbi Chanina ben T'radyon had indeed set an Eved free, Eliyahu ha'Navi arrived in court - disguised as a Roman dignitary, to prevent him from testifying.

(c) He warned him - that just as miracles had saved Rebbi Chanina up until now, so too, would a miracle save him now, and that he himself would pay for his evil.

(d) Suddenly - they needed a messenger to go to the Emperor, and he was designated. Even after that, he failed to return to give evidence - because Eliyahu threw him a distance of four hundred Parsah (sixteen hundred Mil).

(a) When they asked Rebbi Chanina ben T'radyon why he had studied Torah, he replied - that this was what his G-d had commanded to do.

(b) They sentenced him to death by burning ...

1. ... his wife - to death, and ...
2. ... his daughter - to live in a brothel.
(c) The sin for which he deserved to die was - pronouncing the forty-two letter Name of Hashem the way it is written.

(d) The sin of ...

1. ... his wife - was not stopping him.
2. ... his daughter - was improving her posture when she heard some Roman dignitaries appraising the way she walked.
Next daf


For further information on
subscriptions, archives and sponsorships,
contact Kollel Iyun Hadaf,