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


brought to you by Kollel Iyun Hadaf of Har Nof
Rosh Kollel: Rav Mordecai Kornfeld

Ask A Question about the Daf

Previous daf

Zevachim, 31

ZEVACHIM 31-33 - Sponsored by a generous grant from an anonymous donor. Kollel Iyun Hadaf is indebted to him for his encouragement and support and prays that Hashem will repay him in kind.


QUESTION: Rebbi Yanai states that when a person has intention, when offering a Korban, to feed a k'Zayis of the meat to dogs Chutz l'Zemano, the Korban becomes Pigul. TOSFOS (DH Chishev) asks that this seems to contradict the conclusion of the Gemara later (36b). The Gemara there concludes that when a person has intention to feed the meat of a Korban to people who are Tamei, Chutz l'Zemano, such a thought does *not* render the Korban invalid as Pigul. This is because the people who are Tamei are not fit to eat the Korban, and one must have a thought of an acceptable eating Chutz l'Zemano in order to invalidate the Korban. Why, then, does the Korban become Pigul when one has in mind to feed the meat to dogs? Dogs should be no better than people who are Tamei, and the Korban should remain valid!


(a) TOSFOS (36b, DH she'Yochluhu) answers that having a thought of a Tamei person eating is not considered having a thought of a proper eating, because as soon as the Tamei person touched the meat, it becomes Tamei, and thus the person is not eating permissible meat. Even if someone else places the meat in the mouth of the Tamei person without him touching it with his hands, the fact that he could make the meat Tamei before eating it makes the thought ineffective with regard to Pigul. In contrast, when dogs eat the meat, they do not make it Tamei. (See SEFAS EMES, who asks why the prohibition against giving food of Kodshim to dogs is not equivalent to making the food become Tamei.) A similar answer is cited in the SHITAH MEKUBETZES (31a).

(b) The Shitah Mekubetzes quotes the RIVA (in his second answer) who answers that since it is not within the person's power to actualize his intention of having Tamei people eat the Korban (since perhaps they will refuse when he offers it to them or insists that they eat it), his thought is unable to make the Korban Pigul. A thought of Pigul is ineffective only when it is within the power of the person to carry out his thought. In contrast, it is considered within his power to feed the meat to the dogs.

The MIKDASH DAVID (33:1) has difficulty with the answer of the Riva. If the reason why a thought that Tamei people will eat the Korban does not create Pigul is because he cannot make them eat it, then having a thought that *Tahor* people will eat the Korban should also not cause Pigul, because it is not in one's power to make them eat the meat of the Korban (and it is very likely that they will agree to do so, since it is Chutz l'Zemano). (See EZEHU MEKOMAN.)

(c) The RIVA (in his first answer) says that the question does not begin. The Gemara later (36b) quotes Rav Chisda who says that the thought of giving a k'Zayis to a Tamei person to eat Chutz l'Zemano *does* create Pigul. Rava supports this ruling by comparing it to a regular case of Pigul before Zerikah. When the person thinks his Pigul thought, the meat is not yet fit to be eaten and, nevertheless, the thought to eat that meat at a later time, Chutz l'Zemano, makes the Korban Pigul. Accordingly, having a thought to feed the meat to Tamei people (even though the meat is not fit to be eaten by them, since they make it Tamei) should also render it Pigul! The Gemara says that Rava's proof is not valid, because in a regular case of Pigul, the meat would have become fit (were it not for the Pigul thought) after the Zerikah, and thus the person indeed had a thought to eat meat that was fit. In the case of Tamei people, the meat would become Pasul as soon as the Tamei people touch it.

The Riva understands (unlike the other explanations above) that the Gemara's response is addressing Rava's proof, and not Rav Chisda's ruling. Accordingly, we remain with the Halachah that both thoughts -- feeding the meat to dogs and feeding the meat to Tamei people -- can create Pigul. The KESEF MISHNEH (Hilchos Pesulei ha'Mukdashin 14:9) and LIKUTEI HALACHOS explain that this is also the understanding of the RAMBAM, who rules like Rav Chisda.

(d) The TZON KODASHIM follows the approach of the first two explanations mentioned above, but he suggests a different way to differentiate between Tamei people and dogs. Since Tamei people are forbidden from eating the Korban because they are Tamei, it is not deemed a thought of "eating." In contrast, a dog is not forbidden from eating the Korban. Even though we are not supposed to feed Kodshim to a dog, from the dog's perspective there is no reason why his eating of Kodshim should not be called eating. (See a similar explanation in PANIM ME'IROS 31b, DH she'Ein). (Y. Montrose)


QUESTION: Rav Ashi asks whether or not having a thought that two people will each eat half of a k'Zayis of the Korban Chutz l'Zemano creates Pigul. Abaye infers the answer to this question from the Mishnah. The Mishnah (29b) states that if a person thinks about *eating* half of a k'Zayis and *burning* half of a k'Zayis, the two intentions do not combine to invalidate the Korban, because the act of eating and the act of burning are not compatible. This implies that in a similar case -- where both intentions are of a similar nature -- even if the intended actions are done separately, they invalidate the Korban. This shows that even if the thought was that two separate people should eat a total of a k'Zayis, it can make a Korban Pasul.

Based on the above logic, the Acharonim have difficulty understanding the Gemara's next question. Rava asks whether a thought of eating a k'Zayis in more than "Kedei Achilas Peras" (the amount of time which constitutes one act of eating) Chutz l'Zemano also invalidates a Korban. Is a thought of eating a Korban Chutz l'Zemano compared to the Mizbe'ach's "eating" of the Korban, for which this time period does not apply, or is it comparable to the eating of ordinary people, for which this time period does apply? Abaye answers this question, too, from the Mishnah (29b). Since the Mishnah is saying that a thought of eating is incompatible with a thought of burning, we can infer that if they *were* compatible, they would make the Korban Pigul -- even though the burning on the Mizbe'ach usually takes longer than Kedei Achilas Peras! The Gemara responds that this proof is inconclusive, because the Mishnah might be referring to a case in which there is a large fire on the Mizbe'ach, and the meat gets totally burned within the time period of Kedei Achilas Peras.

What is Rava's doubt about in this question? The Gemara already accepted Abaye's proof that a thought of two different people eating a total of a k'Zayis can invalidate the Korban. He makes no mention of any need for the two people to eat a k'Zayis within a time period of Kedei Achilas Peras of each other's eating; the issue of Kedei Achilas Peras is not relevant to two different people, and yet the Korban is still Pasul! How, then, does Rava entertain the possibility that one must have a thought to eat the k'Zayis of meat within the time period of Kedei Achilas Peras in order to invalidate the Korban?


(a) The SEFAS EMES answers that Abaye is simply repeating the proof he gave to Rava in response to the first question. The Sefas Emes uses this explanation to clarify the words of the RAMBAM (Hilchos Pesulei ha'Mukdashin 14:10). The Rambam rules that when one has a thought to eat the k'Zayis in more time than Kedei Achilas Peras, the Korban still becomes Pasul. If the Gemara does not conclusively answer the question, then how does the Rambam know this Halachah? The KESEF MISHNEH explains that the Rambam maintains that the answer of the Gemara to Abaye's proof -- that the Mishnah is talking about a large fire on the Mizbe'ach which consumes the Korban within a period of Kedei Achilas Peras -- is attempting to reject the proof with a weak suggestion, and not with a strong rebuttal. Accordingly, the Rambam follows the stronger logic of Abaye's proof.

Alternatively, the Kesef Mishneh suggests that the Rambam might have had a different Girsa in the Gemara. His Girsa did not include the Gemara's rebuttal at all.

The Sefas Emes argues with the Kesef Mishneh's first suggestion. The fact that the fire on the Mizbe'ach could consume a k'Zayis of meat within Kedei Achilas Peras was probably the normal way that the fire burned! This would mean that the Gemara's answer to Abaye's proof is very strong, because it is very probable that the Mishnah is referring to when there is a large fire on the Mizbe'ach which burns a k'Zayis quickly! He therefore states that Abaye's proof was the same proof he gave Rav Ashi. The question of "v'Ha Haktarah...," and the answer that the Mishnah is referring to a large fire on the Mizbe'ach, was not in the text of the Rambam. The Sefas Emes implies that the Rambam's text is indeed the correct text of the Gemara. (See TOSFOS YOM TOV 3:3 for a different explanation of the Rambam's source.)

(b) The PANIM ME'IROS explains that Rava was asking his question as a continuation of the previous question. Rava asked that if we assume that having a thought that two people will eat a total of a k'Zayis does *not* create Pigul, then what is the Halachah when one has a thought of eating a k'Zayis in more than Kedei Achilas Peras? (The Panim Me'iros admits that this explanation seems to be refuted by TOSFOS here who apparently learns that these are two independent questions.)

(c) The KEHILOS YAKOV (23:2) answers that there are two ways in which one can eat a k'Zayis in more time than Kedei Achilas Peras. One way is when the person eats a half of a k'Zayis in a normal amount of time, pauses for a while, and then eats the second half as he ate the first. We can infer that having a thought of this manner of eating Chutz l'Zemano causes a Korban to be Pasul, just as a k'Zayis eaten by two different people is Pasul. Rava's question, on the other hand, was of a different nature. He was asking about someone who had a thought to continually eat one morsel at a time at a leisurely pace which would take longer than Kedei Achilas Peras. This is not a normal way to eat. Rava's question was whether or not someone who thought to eat "she'Lo k'Derech Achilah" (in an abnormal manner) also creates Pigul. We cannot infer anything about this type of eating from the normal eating of two people. Rava's question was whether we say that the eating must be like the normal eating of a person (and thus such a thought would not invalidate the Korban), or whether it is comparable to the eating of the Mizbe'ach (which does not exclude this type of eating, and thus the Korban would become Pasul). (See also TZON KODASHIM and YAD BINYAMIN.) However, the Kehilos Yakov himself writes in a footnote that this explanation seems to be at odds with RASHI's understanding of the Gemara (DH Hachi Garsinan l'Echol), when Rashi says that the question is regarding eating half a k'Zayis and then eating the other half later. (Y. Montrose)

Next daf


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