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of Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Yerushalayim
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld

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Sotah 22

SOTAH 21-25 - These Dafim have been dedicated by Mrs. Estanne Abraham-Fauer in honor of the first Yahrzeit (18 Teves 5761) of her father, Reb Mordechai ben Eliezer Zvi (Weiner). May the merit of supporting and advancing the study of the Talmud be l'Iluy Nishmaso.


(a) Opinion #1 (R. Elazar): One who learned written Torah and Mishnah, but not the reasons and resolutions of the Mishnayos - he is an ignoramus;
(b) Opinion #2 (R. Shmuel bar Nachmani): He is a Bur (crude, empty person).
(c) Opinion #3 (R. Yanai): He is as a Kuti.
(d) Opinion #4 (R. Acha bar Yakov): He is as a witch.
1. (Rav Nachman bar Yitzchak): Presumably, this is correct - a witch says things, without knowing what they mean; this one recites teachings, without understanding them.
(e) (Beraisa - R. Meir): An ignoramus is one who does not recite Shema Yisrael with its blessings, morning and evening;
1. Chachamim say, one who does not don Tefilin;
2. Ben Azai says, one who does not have Tzitzis on his garment;
3. R. Yonason ben Yosef says, anyone that has children and does not raise them to learn Torah;
4. Others say, even if he learned written Torah and Mishnah, but not the reasons and resolutions of the Mishnayos - he is an ignoramus;
i. If he learned written Torah but not Mishnah, he is a Bur;
ii. "I will plant Beis Yisrael and Beis Yehudah, the seed of men and the seed of animals" - this is one that did not learn Torah nor Mishnah.
(f) (R. Yitzchak) "My son, fear Hash-m and the king; do not mingle with Shonim" - Shonim are those that recite Mishnayos.
(g) Question: This is obvious!
(h) Answer: One might have thought, it means those that repeat a sin.
1. (Rav Huna): One who sins and repeats the sin, it becomes permitted (in his eyes) to him.
(i) (Beraisa): Those that recite laws destroy the world.
(j) Question: Can this really be?
(k) Answer (Ravina): Yes, because they give rulings based on the Mishnayos they know.
1. Support (Beraisa - R. Yehoshua): How can one say they destroy the world - they establish the world!
i. "Halichos (the ways) of the world are to him" (to one who learns Halachos (laws)).
2. They destroy the world, because they give rulings based on the Mishnayos they know.
(a) (Mishnah): A woman that is a Perushah ...
(b) (Beraisa): A virgin that prays excessively, and a widow that is frequent among her neighbors, and a youth whose months were not fulfilled - these destroy the world.
(c) Question (regarding a virgin that prays): But R. Yochanan said, we learned fear of sin from a (particular) virgin, and (striving to) receive reward from a widow.
1. R. Yochanan heard a virgin fall on her face and pray that men should not stumble with her and lose their world to come.
2. There was a widow that used to pray every day in R. Yochanan's Beis Midrash, even though there was a synagogue near her.
i. R. Yochanan: Isn't there a synagogue near you?
ii. The widow: I come here to receive reward for each step!
(d) Answer: The likes of Yochni Bas Retivi (a witch who made people think that her prayers saved women from problematic deliveries) destroy the world.
(e) Question: What is a youth whose months were not fulfilled?
(f) Answer #1 (Chachamim of Bavel): A Chacham that rebels against his Rebbe'im.
(g) Answer #2 (R. Aba): A Talmid that is not old enough to rule, and gives rulings.
1. (R. Avahu): "She made fall many corpses" - this is a Chacham that is not old enough to rule, and rules;
2. "Awesome are the amount she has killed" - this is a Chacham that is old enough to rule, and does not rule.

(h) Question: What is the proper age to rule?
(i) Answer: 40 years.
(j) Objection: But Rabah ruled younger than this!
(k) Answer: Rabah was as great as the greatest Chacham in the city (in such a case, even one less than 40 may rule).
(l) (Mishnah): Blows of Perushim...
(m) (Beraisa): There are 7 types of Perushim: Shichmi, Nakfi, Kizai, mi'Duchya, one who says 'What is my obligation, I will do it', from love, and from fear.
1. Shichmi - they do not act for Hash-m's sake;
2. Nakfi - they shuffle their feet as humble people, and stub their toes;
3. (Rav Nachman bar Yitzchak): Kizai - they bleed from bumping into walls, as one who closes his eyes to avoid looking at women;
4. (Rabah bar Shilo): mi'Duchya - they walk bent;
5. Question: One who says 'What is my obligation, I will do it' - this is praiseworthy!
6. Correction: Rather, he says 'What else is my obligation, I will do it' (implying that he has fulfilled his obligation);
7. (Abaye and Rava): From love and fear (of reward/punishment) should not be taught (for these are praiseworthy)!
i. (Rav Yehudah): A person should always engage in Torah and Mitzvos, even with ulterior motives, for this will lead him to do them for Hash-m's sake.
(n) (Rav Nachman bar Yitzchak): Regarding people, some things are hidden, others are revealed; (Hash-m's) great Beis Din (to which all is revealed) exacts payment from those that (deceivingly) wear the clothes of the humble.
(o) King Yanai (to his wife): You need not fear the true Perushim, nor those that are not Perushim;
1. You need only fear the colored (those that paint themselves as pious).
i. They sin as Zimri, and anticipate reward as Pinchas.
(a) (Mishnah - R. Shimon): Merit does not suspend death of a guilty Sotah;
1. If it did, women would not fear the water; also, people would suspect innocent women that survive.
i. They will say, they are guilty, and merit suspended their death.
(b) Rebbi says, merit suspends the death; she will not give birth or become healthy, rather, she gets increasingly sick and eventually dies as the Torah says.
(c) If her Minchah became Tamei before it was sanctified in a service vessel, it is redeemed, as any other Minchah;
(d) If her Minchah became Tamei after it was sanctified in a service vessel, it is burned, as any other Minchah;
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