A basic-level gemara course that aims primarily to improve the student's ability to logically parse a gemara sugya. At the start of the semester, the emphasis will be almost exclusively on reading the gemara text, and using parallel gemara sources for understanding specific concepts. Rashi's commentary will be used only sparingly, for informational purposes. Later on in the zman, the shiur will begin to focus more on understanding Rashi's approach as a commentator and mechadesh. Some of the comments and chidushim (innovations) of Tosafot will also be included as time goes on. The shiur is appropriate for students with a range of backgrounds who want to improve their skills working with a page of gemara, and at the same time want to be able to participate in the gemara's world of midrashic understandings of the written Torah, halachic discussion, and aggadic ideas. Prior general background in Jewish studies is helpful, but not essential. This semester we will be studying Tractate Makot, Chapter 1.
About Rabbi Yitzhak Zuriel
Rabbi Yitzhak Zuriel was a teacher and educational director at Michlelet Bruria for about 10 years during the 1980s. More recently, he has been working as a software quality engineer at the company NDS in Jerusalem. He is one of the editors of and contributors to NDS's annual Torah journal, Chiddushei Torah@NDS .
In the previous shiur, we finished discussing, "inside", the alternative application of עולא's binyan av from מוציא שם רע, and we saw the gemara's answer to how R.Yehuda learns that malkot are generally given even for violating a negative prohibition of the Torah in which the violation has no action. Please review all this material, and see if you can read and explain the gemara from the top of the page down to where we stopped ((4 lines before the end of the page). If you have any questions, please send by email or raise them at the beginning of this shiur.
In this shiur, we will finish the sugya about the mishna of R.Meir and the Chachamim who disagree with him. We will then learn (Daf 5a) the next Mishna and gemara on it, and then the following Mishna and start its gemara as well. You might want to review these mishnayot in advance, since we already learned them at the beginning of the zman.
July 19, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 4a-5a: Are Zomemim Punished for One, or Two, Transgressions? (III)
(Please see the notes for the previous, canceled, shiur)
July 17, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 4a-5a: Are Zomemim Punished for One, or Two, Transgressions? (CANCELED)
SHIUR CANCELED -- FURTHER UPDATES WILL FOLLOW RE: THE NEXT SHIURIM
In the previous shiur, we finished parsing the entire sugya of gemara on our mishna. We then went back to the beginning (top of Daf 4b) and started to learn "inside". We stopped after discussing the application of the בנין אב brought by the amora עולא to answering the gemara's opening question about R.Meir's position. Please review all of this material. See if you can remember all of the linguistic clues that we used to parse the entire sugya, and try to explain to yourself the starting piece of the gemara that we did learn in greater depth. If you have any questions about any of this, please send them to me by email or ask them at the beginning of this shiur.
In this shiur, we will continue our in-depth discussion of the sugya, segment by segment.
July 12, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 4a-5a: Are Zomemim Punished for One, or Two, Transgressions? (II)
In the previous shiur, we read and discussed the Mishna at the bottom of Daf 4a, and then read Rashi's commentary on it. After that we read and translated the entire sugya on that Mishna, up to the top of Daf 5a, and we began the work of breaking the gemara into its logical segments, to about a quarter of the way down Daf 4b. Please review this material; if you have any questions, you can contact me offline by email or save them for the beginning of this shiur.
In this shiur, we will complete our pass through the sugya, breaking it down into its logical segments and understand its flow. Then we will go back to the beginning and learn each segment in depth. Along the way, we will encounter the exegetical principle called "building a rule from a prototype" (בנין אב) .
July 10, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 4a-4b: Are Zomemim Punished for One, or Two, Transgressions?
In the previous shiur we finished the gemara on the second mishna (Daf 3a) with Rashi. Please review and see if you can read the Rashi yourself. If you have any questions, you can ask them offline by email or at the beginning of this shiur.
In this shiur we are moving ahead to Daf 4a, to learn the 4th mishna of the chapter and its gemara. We will encounter the different tanaitic positions on the basis in the Torah for punishing עדים זוממין. For your convenience I have attached here the relevant pages of gemara.
July 5, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 3a: The Gemara (and Rashi) on the Mishna about Ketuba
In the previous shiur, we finished the previous sugya by learning Tosafot's explanation of the case suggested by Rava. We then learned the new mishna, about עדים זוממין who claimed that a man divorced his wife and did not pay her כתובה. We also read Rashi's explanation of the mishna. Please review all this material and see if you can read and explain it by yourself.
In this shiur, we will learn the very short gemara on this mishna together with Rashi's very detailed explanation.
June 28, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 3a: Tosefot on the statement of Rav; the new Mishna (CANCELED)
SORRY BUT THIS TIME I CANNOT GIVE THE CLASS, AS I AM IN THE HOSPITAL AT MY FATHERS BEDSIDE. I EXPECT THAT WE WILL RESUME AT THE NEXT SCHEDULED TIME.
In the previous shiur we finished the gemara up to the new mishna. We discussed the different proposed cases for the halacha in the meimra of Rav and understood how each was rejected until the final one. We also saw how the gemara exposed to us the correct understanding of R.Akiva in indirect fashion, by using R.Akiva in the discussion of that meimra. Please review this, and try to read and explain it on your own. If you have any questions, please contact me by email or save the questions for the beginning of this shiur.
In this shiur, we are going to first learn the Tosefot, who deals with the difficulty that we saw in Rava's proposed answer in the above gemara. Then we will move on to the new mishna, about the case of עדים זוממין who schemed to make a man pay his wife's כתובה.
June 26, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 3a: The strange meimra of R.Yehuda in the name of Rav
In the previous shiur we read and translated the gemara to the end of the sugya (i.e. to the next mishna), discussed the overall flow of the gemara and how it relates to and uses Rabbi Akiva's fifth exception to the law of zomemim. We also went in depth to understand the small first piece of this sugya, which explains the reasoning behind Rabbi Akiva's position. Please review all of this material and see if you can read, translate and explain at least the first segment by yourself. If you have any questions, you can ask them as always by email or at the beginning of this shiur.
In this shiur we will first detect the logical flow, then go inside in depth to understand the gemara's discussion of the strange meimra of R.Yehuda in the name of Rav.
For your convenience I have attached here a file with the gemara page that we are learning.
June 21, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 2b-3a: Rabbi Akiva's exception to the law of zomemim
In the previous shiur we finished the piece of gemara about the 3rd exception in the beraita to the law of zomemim--that they don't pay כופר--and then we learned the segment of gemara that brought a discussion about the scope of the fourth exception --that they are not sold as עבד עברי. Please review all this material, and try to read and explain the gemara and its concepts and logic by yourselves. If you have any questions, I will be happy to answer them either by email or at the beginning of this shiur.
In this shiur, our attention turns to the last statement in the beraita, the halacha brought in the name of Rabbi Akiva. This segment of gemara will bring us up to the new mishna on Daf 3a.
June 19, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 2b-3a: Additional exceptions to the Law of Zomemim (III)
In the previous shiur, we learned the gemara's discussion about כופר and saw that it is considered atonement rather than some kind of monetary compensation. We have a few more lines left to discuss at the end of that section, about the way that the tanaim in the beraita understood the verses about כופר. Please review all of this material, and see if you can read and explain it by yourself. As I mentioned, you can even try to see if you can explain on your own up to the end of the section that we translated. As always, I am happy to answer any questions you may have, either at the beginning of this shiur or offline by email.
In this shiur we will be quickly finishing our discussion of the last lines of the previous section, and then we will continue on to the gemara's discussion of the 4th case in the beraita, about עבד עברי, and then on to the section that deals with the statement made in the name of R.Akiva.
June 14, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 2b: Additional exceptions to the law of zomemim (II)
In the previous shiur we learned the beraita that listed the exceptions to the law of zomemim, and we used Rashi's commentary as a source of information and explanation of the concepts. We also learned the first part of the gemara that discusses this beraita. Please review all of this material; try to read and explain it on your own. If you have any questions you can ask them at the beginning of this shiur, or you can send them by email.
In this shiur, we will continue the gemara's discussion of the beraita, which will take us down to the bottom of the page.
June 12, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 2b:The other cases in which we cannot carry out the Law of Zomemim (I)
In the previous shiur we learned the subsugya that brought the question and answer of the amora עולא as how we know from the Torah that the edim zomemim get the punishment of מלקות when we cannot otherwise fulfill the law of zomemim (i.e. to give the zomemim the punishment/outcome that they tried to give to the defendant). Please review this—read it over and try to explain it by yourself. If you have any questions, I will be most happy to answer them either offline by email or at the beginning of this class.
In this shiur, we will start a longer segment of the sugya, which quotes and explains a ברייתא that brings additional cases—alongside those of the mishna—in which we cannot fulfill the law of zomemim.
June 7, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 2b: Why Malkot for the Zomemim? Plus new cases supplementing the Mishna
In the previous shiur we learned the drash of Reish Lakish that authenticates the halacha of the Mishna that we do not give the עדים זוממים the punishment of exile (גלות). Then we saw how R.Yohanan's attempt to use a קל וחומר instead of that drash was rejected by the amoraim of the gemara. Please review this material and be sure that you can read it and explain it by yourself from the gemara. If you have any questions about the language or the content, please ask them at the beginning of this shiur or offline by email. For your convenience I have attached here a file with the verses that we looked at in shiur and the verses that we will encounter in the next sections of the gemara.
In this shiur we will see how the gemara deals with the question of how we know that the zomemim, in cases like those in the mishna, get the punishment of malkot/makot -- lashes.
June 5, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 2b: Why we can't do to the zomemim as they schemed to do (III)
In the previous shiur (which was unfortunately shortened due to technical problems on my end) we learned the קל וחומר (actually as we saw it's really a חומר וקל) of Bar Pada, and then the חומר וקל of Ravina, which the latter used to reject that of Bar Pada. Please review it and see if you can say it over to yourself, both reading it in the text and explaining the logic. If you have any questions, I will be happy to answer them at the beginning of this shiur or offline by email.
In this shiur we will continue on Daf 2b with the gemara's question of מנהני מילי, this time applied to the case in the mishna of עדים זוממים who attempted to exile the defendant to a city of refuge.
May 31, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Daf 2a-2b: Why we can't do to the zomemim as they schemed to do (II)
In the previous shiur, (which unfortunately ended a few minutes early due to an inexplicable loss of connectivity), we learned the answer of R. Yehoshua b. Levi to the gemara's question regarding the source or derivation of the halacha that we do not make an עד זומם who is a kohen into a חלל as punishment for trying to bring false witness against another kohen that he is a בן גרושה או בן חלוצה. (We first also saw the drash at the end of the tenth chapter of Sanhedrin from which we derive why the zomemim of a בת כהן about whom they brought false witness that she committed adultery do not get the same punishment that she would have gotten.) Please review this material; practice reading the gemara to yourself and explaining it. If you have any questions, I will be happy to answer them at the beginning of this shiur or offline by email.
In this shiur, we are continuing the subsugya of מנהני מילי . We will learn inside the answer of the amora בר פדא and see why the amoraim in the gemara do not accept his logic. Following that, we will move on to answering the same question about the second case in the mishna: the case of exile to a city of refuge.
May 29, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Makot 2a: Why we can't do to the zomemim as they schemed to do
In the previous shiur, we finished chapter 1 of the mishnayot of Masechet Makot. Then we began learning the gemara: first we learned the mishna with Rashi, and then we learned the first sub-sugya of the gemara on daf 2a, which explains the language difficulty in this first mishna. Please review what we did in the gemara and try to say it over by yourself. If you have any questions or difficulties, please ask them at the beginning of this shiur.
In this shiur, we are going to first learn the very short piece of gemara in Masechet Sanhedrin that completes our understanding of our first sub-sugya. Then we will move on with the gemara to the question of why we can't/don't carry out the halacha of הזמה in these cases.
May 24, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Makot 2a: The strange language of Mishna 1: Gemara + Rashi
In the last shiur we just about completed learning the mishnayot of chapter 1, for our overview of the material. I made a graphic illustration of the two possible readings of mishna 5, which I think explains well what I was trying to say in words; it is attached here for your convenience. Please review all the material that we have covered in the mishnayot so far. If you have any questions please ask them at the beginning of this shiur, or send them to me by email.
In this shiur we will quickly finish the last mishnayot (which are not really about our subject matter of עדים זוממים), and then we will begin learning the first page of gemara. We will do some of the Rashi comments as well, first on the mishna itself and then on the gemara. The sugya initially deals with the problematic language of the first mishna. I have posted here the first two pages of gemara.
May 22, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Overview (III): Mishnayot of Chapter 1
I apologize for the shortened shiur last time. We finished up to Mishna ה . We are right in the middle of the mishnayot that present the basic principles of the law of הזמה. If you have any questions about what we did in class, you may ask at the beginning of this shiur or by email beforehand. I encourage you to review everything we have done so far.
In this shiur, we will continue and hopefully get to the end of the mishnayot of this chapter, especially since the latter half of the chapter is not strictly about the subject of עדים זוממים , as we will see, and we will go through the material a bit more quickly.
May 17, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Overview (II): Mishnayot of Chapter 1
In the last shiur, we learned the relevant verses from the Torah as an introduction to the subject of עדים זוממים. We also learned the first Mishna of chapter 1. Please review the material and, if you have questions, you may ask them at the beginning of this class or by email.
In this shiur, we will continue to learn the mishnayot of the chapter. Our goal is to get some familiarity with the subject matter, as this will serve us well when we learn the gemara. Hence I expect to read the mishnayot rather quickly and not to dwell too long on them. You are welcome to look over the material in advance (it is posted for the previous shiur); it would make it easier to follow the class.
May 15, 2012 6:00AM - 7:00AM Introduction and Overview:
Shalom and welcome to all students, those whose are new to WebYeshiva or to my shiur, and those who have studied with me previously.
In this new summer semester, we will be learning the first chapter of Masechet Makot, a fascinating and rather small tractate of the Talmud. Chapter one concerns the subject of ???? ??????, false witnesses who are in essence presenting testimony about an event or transaction that they did not actually witness. The Torah applies a unique principle in such a case, that the court punishes the witnesses by giving them the sentence that they would have caused the accused to receive had they succeeded in their plot. Since just about all the Talmudic material on this subject is found in this chapter, we will have the opportunity to learn a lot about this topic and see its various facets and issues.
As we always do in this gemara shiur, we will begin in the first, introductory, shiur by learning the relevant passages in the Torah, then the mishnayot of the first chapter. I have posted this material here for your convenience. You are welcome to look them over in advance of the shiur.
As always, I welcome your participation in the shiur, in asking questions and joining the discussion. I am happy to answer questions you may have at any time during the shiur, and even in between shiurim by email. My email address is email@example.com .
I look forward to learning with all of you this zman!