ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem
Previous daf Menachos 32
MENACHOS 32 - dedicated by Rabbi Dr. Eli Turkel of Ra'anana, Israel, and
his wife. May they be blessed with long years of health and happiness, and
may they see all of their children and grandchildren follow them in Torah
and Yir'as Shamayim!
(a) We ask on Rebbi Chelbo's testimony of Rav Huna, from a Beraisa, where
Rebbi Shimon ben Elazar testified that Rebbi Meir would write Mezuzos on
Duchsustus (spliced parchment, which will be explained later). Apart from
the fact that he would leave a space both at the top and at the bottom of
the Mezuzah, he described the shape of Rebbi Meir's Mezuzos - as 'like a
column of a Seifer-Torah' (i.e. long and narrow).
(b) Rebbi Shimon ben Elazar asked Rebbi Meir why he wrote his Mezuzos,
Pesuchos - since, in the Torah, the Parshah of Sh'ma is S'tumah.
(c) Rebbi Meir replied - because in the Torah, Parshah of 'Sh'ma' and that
of 'Ve'hayah im Shamo'a', are not next to each other.
(d) We reconcile Rebbi Chelbo's testimony of Rav Huna (regarding a Mezuzah
being S'tumah) with Rav Chananel Amar Rav's ruling like Rebbi Shimon ben
Elazar - by confining the latter to the spaces exclusively.
(a) Rav Menashya (or Rav Shmuel) bar Ya'akov gives the Shi'ur regarding the
space on top and the bottom of a Mezuzah - as sufficient to accommodate a
clasp (which they would use to prevent the pages from curling).
(b) Abaye asked Rav Yosef whether he did not agree with the previous answer
(that Rav's ruling was confined to the space, but did not extend to
Pesuchos) - because Rav himself tended to follow the Minhag, and it was
customary at that time, to write the Mezuzah S'tumah.
(c) To prove his point, Abaye cited a statement of Rabah ... Amar Rav, that
if Eliyahu were to come and teach 'Choltzin be'Man'al, Shom'in Lo' (see
Shitah Mekubetzes 3 & 4). Based on the Minhag to perform Chalitzah with a
sandal, he added that if he were to teach 'Ein Choltzin be'Sandal, Ein
(a) Rav Yosef agrees with Rabah's second statement. He quoted Rav's first
statement as ' ... Ein Choltzin be'Man'al, Shom'in Lo'.
(b) The ramifications of Rabah and Rav Yosef's dispute are - whether
Lechatchilah, one may use a shoe (Rav Yosef) or not (Rabah).
(c) To reconcile Rebbi Chelbo with Rebbi Shimon ben Elazar - Rav Nachman bar
Yitzchak amends the latter's testimony to read 've'Oseh Parshiyosehah *Af*
(a) The Beraisa prohibits using Parshiyos from a worn-out Seifer-Torah or
Tefilin for a Mezuzah - 'L'fi she'Ein Moridin mi'Kedushah Chamurah
(b) Tefilin possess more Kedushah than Mezuzos - because they comprise four
Parshiyos, as opposed to the two of Mezuzah.
(c) We extrapolate from the above reason - that if it was possible to
detract from a greater Kedushah, it would be permitted to use the Parshiyos
of Tefilin for a Mezuzah.
(d) We reject the proof from there that Mezuzah must be S'tumah, like
Tefilin - on the grounds that maybe the Tana is talking about cutting out
(not Parshiyos, but) one or two lines from Tefilin and sewing them to a
(a) According to another Beraisa, one writes Mezuzos on Duchsustus, Halachah
le'Moshe mi'Sinai - and Tefilin on K'laf.
(b) If one splices an animal skin - 'K'laf' is the inner part of the outer
section (the part that is closer to the skin), and 'Duchsustus', the outer
part of the inner section (the part that is closer to hair).
(c) In spite of this distinction, the previous Beraisa intimates that if one
was permitted to change from Kedushas Tefilin to Kedushas Mezuzah, one would
be able to use the Parshiyos of worn out Tefilin for a Mezuzah - because the
distinction is a preference ('le'Mitzvah'), but not Me'akev.
(d) And the Beraisa, which rules ...
1. ... 'Shinah Pasul' - refers to Tefilin, but not to Mezuzos.
2. ... 'Shinah ba'Zeh u'va'Zeh, Pasul' - refers to writing Tefilin on the
outer part of K'laf, or (even) the inner part of Duchsustus (see Tosfos DH
(a) We might reconcile 'Shinah ba'Zeh u'va'Zeh, Pasul' with 'Ha'Moridin,
Osin' - by making it a Machlokes Tana'im (as we shall now see).
(b) The Tana Kama in another Beraisa rules Pasul. The Tana in the name of
Rebbi Acha'i (or Rebbi Akiva or Rebbi Ya'akov) b'Rebbi Chanina - rules that
it is Kasher.
(c) When we ask 'Ha Moridin, Osin. ve'Ha Ba'i Sirtut' - we again query the
Tana's statement implying that it would be possible to use a Parshah from
Tefilin for a Mezuzah, seeing as a Mezuzah requires 'Sirtut' (marked lines
across the column, underneath which the Sofer writes the K'sav).
(d) Rav Minyumi bar Chilkiyah ... Amar Rav invalidates a Mezuzah which does
not have Sirtut. Rav Minyumi bar Chilkiyah himself - says that it is
'Halachah le'Moshe mi'Sinai'.
(a) We conclude that whether or not, Sirtut is necessary, is a Machlokes
Tana'im. Rebbi Yirmiyah quoting Rebbi, rules that Tefilin and Mezuzos ...
1. ... may be written without copying them from a Kasher one.
(b) le'Halachah, one is permitted to write ...
2. ... do not require Sirtut.
1. ... Tefilin without Sirtut, but not Mezuzos.
2. ... Tefilin and Mezuzos without copying them from a Kasher one - because
these Parshiyos are well-known, and a Sofer is unlikely to err.
(a) Rav Chelbo saw Rav Huna turn a large jar upside down, place it on the
floor and put a Seifer-Torah on it - because the Seifer-Torah was lying on
the couch upon which he wanted to sit (and he forbade sitting on a couch on
which a Seifer-Torah is lying).
(b) According to Rabah bar bar Chanah Amar Yochanan - there is nothing wrong
with sitting on a couch on which a Seifer-Torah is lying ...
(c) ... and the reason that Rebbi Elazar once slipped off the couch on which
he was sitting and sat on the floor was (not because the Seifer was lying on
that particular couch at the time, but) - because they had placed it on the
floor, and he felt distressed at the thought of the indignity to the
Seifer-Torah (see Hagahos Radal).
(a) Rav Yehudah Amar Shmuel invalidates a Mezuzah that is written like a
letter - meaning that it is written without Sirtut and without due care
regarding missing letters and extra letters.
(b) When he explained that he learns this from a 'Gezeirah-Shavah' from
'Kesivah' ("u'Chesavtam") 'Kesivah', he might have been referring to the
Pasuk (in connection with the Parshah of Amalek) "K'sov Zos Zikaron
ba'Seifer" (and a Seifer, as opposed to an Igeres, is written with care) or
he might have been referring to - the Pasuk in Ki-Seitzei (in connection
with a Get "Ve'kasav Lah Seifer K'risus" [see Tosfos DH 'Kasvah']).
(c) Rav Yehudah Amar Shmuel renders invalid a Mezuzah that one hangs on the
door-post on a stick - on the basis of the Pasuk in Va'eschanan
"bi'She'arecha", implying that it must be affixed to the door-post.
(a) We support this with a Beraisa - where the Tana rules that doing just
that or fixing the Mezuzah behind the door - constitutes a danger (because
it leaves one unprotected from demons [see also Tosfos DH 'Sakanah']).
(b) Munbaz ha'Melech on the other hand, was perfectly justified in hanging a
Mezuzah on a stick overnight in the inns that he stopped at - because a
guest for less than thirty days, even in Eretz Yisrael, is Patur from
Mezuzah (as we shall see in 'ha'Techeiles').
(a) Rav Yehudah Amar Shmuel requires the Mezuzah to be fixed - inside the
doorway (to preclude the outer wall of the door-post that faces the street).
(b) We ask - that this is obvious, since the Torah writes "bi'She'arecha".
(c) And we answer by citing a statement of Rava, who said - that it needs to
be fixed on the outer Tefach that is closest to the street, as we shall see
later) leading us to believe that the further away from the house the
Mezuzah is fixed, the better.