Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Rabbinic Literature as a Source for History Test 2

This is from Rabbi Kanarfogel's class. Any and all mistakes are mine. I am exhausted. And that is all.

Minhagei Beis Kneset- Different Minhagim in general.

Ma'asei Rav: Book about the Minhagim of the Gra (late 18th century)

Machzor Vitur: Rashi's customs (12th century)- It is thought to have originated from Sifras Dibei Rashi- number of sections with the written letter taf for Tosfos- seems older people, older minhagim

Minhagei Maharal: Customs of Ri Yaakov Lav who dies in 1427. Wasn't put together by the Maharal himself but rather by a veteran talmid named R' Zalman. That's quoted constantly by the Rama in Shulchan Aruch. Written with a very important need in mind- lives right after the Black Death/ Bubonic Plague. What happened was, in the period after that, communities in Germany/ Austria came to the Maharal and said, "We've lost our minhagim! Could you give us your minhagim so people can adopt these (lots of hanhagos and minhagim throughout the calendar year?)"

[sidepoint: entropy of minhagim-people do what's easiest of both bonified minhagim. Proper consumption of food, though, super important, etc. Minhagim are much more transitory then.]

What about the selection of chazanim themselves- what do you do? There was a period where it seemed chazanim were selected by obvious choice- most learned person in the community, facility in prayer component, voice component/ execution thereof. In earlier period 1) general halakhic knowledge 2) facility with Tefillah specifically (remember, maybe Shaliach Tzibur has a siddur, maybe he doesn't). Number of written codices that existed- not many. Assumption is if someone wants to be a chazan there is some facility (or you'd be a fool to try it.) Heavier emphasis is probably on 1 and 2. Outstanding Talmid Chacham- assumption of piety (some with facility with Tefillah.) No hard evidence for how chazan was chosen or how he was selected. The most outstanding people rise to the top so there was no real question of how he was chosen; it simply happened- that's why there is no real discussion about it.

Earliest discussions in Ashkenaz is when all of a sudden machlokes comes and the question is whether person X can be a chazan and how do you choose chazanim (happens around the year 1200).

So the question is: What was in vogue until now and what has switched/ changed?

Start with Chazan but now we get into who runs the community- no concept of the Rav of a community yet- the question of how taxes should be paid to the non-Jewish overlord; there was some type of method to make these communal decisions (community gets to make its own decisions). The idea was self-government/ autonomy.

How do you make these decisions/ how are communal decisions made (logically?)

1. There's what's called Tuvei Ha'Ir- people who are in charge of administering but even among these men, how were decisions made? It was through a vote. Who votes? Heads of households. So in early Ashkenaz, if almanah is the head of a household, she can vote.

Who wins the vote? There are two basical models:

A. Some kind of majority rule
- Is that the majority of Tuvei Ha'Ir?
-Is that a majority of Mehuganim- more scholarly people?
- Is that a majority of heads of households/ everyone over a certain age?

The idea of "majority rules" has a history.

2. Some kind of unanimity- communal policy enacted unanimously- another way of saying, some kind of consensus. So they must all work it out together.

Is the community comparable to a Beis Din or not? If yes, community majority rules. If not, the community is like partners so the name of the game is consensus and compromise. (If it's like a Beis Din, the idea is Acharei Rabim L'Hatos)

Discussion of Jewish Communal Decision-Making is pretty old. Selecting A Chazan is a newer discussion. In the first topic, there is a famous teshuva that appears in the Kolbo, in siman kuf chaf-bet. It's a case where someone had a non-Jewish maidservant who was difficult in the extreme- a case beteween Reuvein and Shimon. Reuvein said she called him a name- she's got to go. Shimon, who is her owner, says no and has friends to back him up. Here the idea of majority rule is enforced. The question is, can majority rule compel the minority? This teshuva says yes. This all happened in Troyes.

Question is what was the year? Two names of Rabbis are on the teshuva (should be 3 if it were truly like a Beis Din) but very hard to get the two names into the same century- so it's a machlokes of the historiaans.

Professor Agus held that the two talmidim who were talmidim of R' Gershom (so 11th century, because they didn't have Rashi yet, etc). Important point, then- when was there majority rules in general midieval society (in 12th century amongst the guilds.) Professor Agus asks, where did the guilds get it from? Why was he saying this? Because Professor Baer (of Hebrew University) had written that 2 chachamim on this teshuva are 13th century German chachamim. So they're writing to two 13th century (including Elazar of Worms.) Baer says this view is supported because the passage appears in the Kolbo (which was compiled in the 13th century, and besides, guilds invented majority rule and Jewish history follows the host culture.) Agus said the fact that it appears in the Kolbo is not a problem- it's a likut and besides, Jews teach the Christians.

1981- Abraham Grossman discovered manuscripts that give different names to the chachamim an so Agus was right about 11th century dating of the manuscript. There was a strong position that held unanimity as well and was especially concerned by Da'as Mikneh (surely this doesn't mean the knowledge of cattle? Something went wrong in my notes here.) When community decides to appropriate/ expropriate money, by what power do they do this? Unanimous would be this idea of da'as mikneh (problem with gambling, forget morality issue- did you make a kinyan, etc- a kind of ganif- ill-gotten gains.)

By the time we get to the year 1200 or so- both rules/ ideas. Now the chazan question- if somebody applies for a job of chazan, what vote does he win- majority or unanimity?

Why would you think the community needs to be involved? The class answers- he's the Shaliach Tzibur, needs to be accepted by the Tzibur- perhaps also the idea of nepotism. But then on the other hand, maybe should differ because chazan includes liturgical/ other positions (elected/ appointed position, etc.)

page 2- Really key opening texts. Let's give these texts some attention. This is the Or Zarua (R' Yitzchak ben Moshe Or Zarua) who ultimately serves as the Rav of Vienna. He has significant Rabbeim in both Mintz, etc - he learns with R' Yehuda Sirlain and Raviya (who dies in 1225.) He spends time with R' Yehuda HaChasid (who dies in 1217).

R' Yitzchak ben Moshe M'Vilna has certain Rabbeim:

1. R' Yehudah Sirlain (dies 1224)
2. Raviyah (dies 1225)
3. R' Yehuda HaChasid (dies 1217)

Not only Tosfos with this melange- different background. The period between 1175 and 1225 is a period of separation between Northern France and Germany. One of the first to break out and go is Northern France. Awareness of Rabbeinu Tam and the Ri's material but a lot of conversations from France to France, Germany to Germany-it's more of a local conversation. Contact with France is not as strong. Sefer he produces- freestanding sefer covering many areas of halakha- more importantly, references to Frenchmen and Germans.

Teshuva acheres- Meaning we're in a section-

page 1- Starts out Teshuva me'haRav HaMechaber- the first siman is kuf vav beis- Till now, the Or Zarua starts out with this end of hilchos techila mini-treatise on other issues. The whole issue of writing shailos and teshuvos is interesting. Germans seem to write teshuvos more than the French. What's the deal? The French did write teshuvos but didn't collect them too well. Collecting and publishing teshuvos is a German thing. So Or Zarua has several such teshuva respositories (so what he did here is between Hilchos Tefillah and Hilchos Shaliach Tzibur has this-)

So are these his own teshuvos? Actually, it's a mixture. Siman kuf yud beis you see on page 1- that's a teshuva of Rav (the printer figured that out.) The question there is if you kill a man by accident, can you go back to being a chazan? We'll look at that teshuva later.

Second teshuva in sequence is from R' Eliezer of Prague l'Bohemia (again, per the printer) to R' Yehudah Hachasid- so a teshuva written by someone else! This is about the subject of paying a chazan.

So why is this here? Because shailos involving Tefillah.

Then comes our siman dealing with specific case of a candidate for chazanus whose candidacy wasn't going so well- next teshuva is on topic of synagogue honors. Sometimes you can get an attitude from a peirush- example of Kli Yakar who cites horrible rich people and bad poor people- so he was implementing historical attitudes into the Chumash.

Looking at Chovos HaLevavos not only as Jewish thought but also as a critique of Muslim courtier class. One of the problems with Rashi- like him to tell us more of himself- when is Rashi, what can you learn about his attitudes toward other people (question though if just chazal or if he chose specifically- wants to throw in a specific point by choosing those midrashim.)

Is R' Samson Raphael Hirsch on the chumash- how much of that is a thoughtful/ clever peirush and how much of that is anti-Enlightenment? There is this idea of reception history. How to interact with the text? References between Rishonim and Achronim as well- you have to be very careful how you define this. May a Mechaber inject some of his own ideas done properly- yes. Take the Rambam- on the one hand in Mishna Torah he doesn't tell you much about his own situation - but in the hakdamah he does!

Who was the audience for Rashi's peirush? The Rebbe said that it is for the perspicacious five year old or for a lamdan- the gadlus of Rashi is that both ages can get something out of it.

You can ask about most sefarim -to what group is it directed? (Some are just for women and children, sometimes the author is explicit, sometimes not). Rashi lived through the First Crusade- how much of this is an anti-Christian polemic (in terms of Rashi's commentary on Tanakh?) Does that detract from Rashi that he has an anti-Christian polemic?

Plenty of chachamim gedolim who don't give a whit about any of these questions- if learning this is talking to me. Compare Rashi on Gemara to Rashi on Chumash. Rashi on Gemara gets very little play as Zemano Rashi.

We can be interested- it may/ may not be important to us. My bias- the more you know about the Rishonim, it works better for learning- not worse. "Unmasking Gedolim- to find they are still Supermen!"

When you look at the Rishonim as people, they come out as pretty stellar people.

Midieval Rhetoric: (Rambam calling Ibn Ezra names)- the TV show "Crossfire"- 2 big Talmidei Chachamim who are not physically fighting but who are fighting with words. You're not sharp enough- you can do better! A) Meant you had to realize he thought you could do better B) If you ever said something and he didn't say shtuyot that was a big compliment

Analyses of lamdanim- historians- nothing personal against women; it's a sugya.

In order to learn something historical from a Rishon about a Rishon, you have to be very well versed. Because the question becomes, is this because of a sugya, mekoros or is this their personal opinion (speak history)? Better make it very clear that you've ruled out all these other things before stating that it is history.

Thinktank at Penn- my job in part was why Chazal would say these opinions. They would say something wild and come to me with this sad, fabulous expression and say "Is it a Gemara?" Evil-eyed looks...The position you're expressing must be a midrash. It's hard to work the two together- when should you provide the history?

[That is the most fabulous job ever. Rabbi Kanarfogel, you're so cool.]

This is when Rabbi Kanarfogel and I get into a whole side-discussion where I ask him whether he would ever refrain from publishing books because someone could potentially read them and get the wrong idea, and whether he is responsible for this. He responds:

No! Ignorance you don't have to be choshesh for. But I won't run to the Beis Midrash and tell everyone to read my books- not everyone has to learn the same way.

The Or Zarua to R' Chizkiyahu: Not only is he a great chacham, but even his questions are sweeter than honey.

Tav- The word tav, which is referenced here, does appear in Tanakh (story in Gemara of tzaddikim with a tav on their heads- signs/ notices) - maybe gematriya- called it. There's a story of a man named Akiva who didn't know how to spell his name correctly to give his wife a get. Sothe Or Zarua - how does he solve this? He went to sleep and he dreamt of the pasuk "Or Zarua" so spelled out R' Akiva- that's why he called himself the Or Zarua.

"Written on the subway wall"- Simon and Garfunkel, from Rabbi Kanarfogel's Misspent Youth

[All of these titles are great. There was another section where Rabbi Kanarfogel was teaching us how not to critique books. One never writes, he explained, "Dear Jerk, I hate your book. Love, Rabbi Kanarfogel."]

Tav in modern Hebrew means a musical key.

So it could mean that the chazan has the right pitch (maybe the Or Zarua is aying that)

So the Or Zarua writes to R' Chizkiyahu who is onw going to get it but good (after being complimented.)

Now he brings in R' Simcha of Shpira- truth is, R' Simcha ruled that even if a single individual wishes to block the appointment of a chazan, he can- because it requires an agudah achas- unanimity. See, R' Chizkiyahu wants to take over for his father in Magdeburg. The problem is that some small number of people are saying nope- he can't have the job- so R' Chizkiyahu asks for a psak. So the Or Zarua writes back and starts off by quoting R' Simcha of Shpira.

Then says there were a lot of cases in the Rhineland and I saw those where a few people were m'akev on the Rov. The custome of the Rhineland area is that a minority can impose its will on the community. It seems in terms of normal communal policy most decisions were made by a majority. Problem- if we go by majority communal rules, 2 problems per the Or Zarua:

1. Rebbe -R' Simcha of Shpira says even one person can cause problems
2. Minority (few people) per custom in Rhineland can cause problems

Now the Or Zarua will bring in R' Yehudah the Chasid.

Or Zarua, page 2- This is the Or Zarua's own teshuva that he writes to Chizkiyahu ben Yaakov. Line 4- emes v'emunah- Truth of matter is teacher. R' simcha held that one individual can push off your ability to be a chazan (a yachid.) As background for this, why so excited about majority/ minority? Because majority rules in most common decisions.

However, one yachid must have a substantive objection- not just any reason.

Elsewhere Rabbi Simcha says it has to be sono- substantive issue. Substantive concerns where realy believe that you and the chazan can't get along- something of substance. So Or Zarua saying:

1. If there are people who have substantive problems with you, then that's a problem (in terms of your being a chazan)

2. A mi'ut (minority) will be able to hold off your appointment as chazan/ not allow for it

In many Rhineland communities, majority rules. So in the case of appointing a chazan, flip it so others have say. Rules of communal government- for some aspects majority is more than sufficient. For others, the minority pushes off.

Question: Is R' Simcha of Shpira saying this is the rule of communal government in general or a din of chazanus?

Rabbeinu Tam holds that unanimity is necessary- it's unanimity, not majority rules.

Why? Because maybe the majority rules idea comes from treating the community like a quasi- Beis Din.

Rabbeinu Tam has reason to suggest the community shouldn't be treated as a Bais Din.

R' Simcha of Shpira, in general, holds by majority rules.

Nobody holds majority rules by chazan (on page two.) The question now becomes as to whether it is one versus a minority objecting to the chazan's appointment.

Is this din in terms of the communal you or a din in terms of chazzanut specifically? Communal government- depends on place to place. That's the idea of minhaga- local rules. And dina means the din-the law all over the place. Minhaga vs. Dina means dependant on the locale versus halakha across the world.

V'omer ani- And I say one who becomes appointed to be a shliach tzibur- not from agudah achas- this is against Rabbanan- against proper halakhic decision.

You can opt to have a Shaliach Tzibur daven for you, in theory. The chazan can be motzi evereyone- baki, mi she'aino baki. If I've objected to your being motzi me in Tefillah, it is his problem (his job at stake.) The Shaliach Tzibur who cannot be a Shaliach Tzibur for all of them- that's a chisaron for the Shaliach Tzibur, the chazan.

[Teshuva of the son of the Or Zarua saying the substantive problem you have that will push off Chazanus is valid.]

Now quotes the Gemara in Ta'anis:

Someone familiar with davening- get the person who is most adept to be a Ba'al Tefillah (not every Talmid Chacham is an adept Ba'al Tefillah.) Has to be agreement- the Tzibur has to agree. Trei Rovei- A Rov and a half. So lots of rov meaning a supermajority. Even if a supermajority and there's a mi'ut who doesn't agree- here it can't go through numbers. Rhineland says a nice rov is what we need. But his Rebbe (he thinks) says it's non-negotiable.

If a Yisrael comes to bring an animal for a korban, there's a mishamer- whichever kohen is there- he takes your korban and works with it- and as it turns out the ba'al hakorban says "Not him!" in terms of doing the korban. So what happens? You might say, hey, you don't get to pick your kohen. We conclude (Gemara in Masechtas Ta'anis) that there are two teams of people in the Beis Hamikdash. There's a shift of kohanim and a shift of Yisraelim to be present when korbanos are actually offered up. Korbano - he has to say it's my korban. So doesn't make sense- how can a person offer a korban when he's not there?

So Neviim Rishonim come up with Asara v'arbah watches and Yisraelim standing in. So they need a proxy.

Or Zarua argues the need to have an overseeing presence to symbolize the Ba'al HaKorban being happy with this kohen (otherwise the korban wouldn't work.) Mishamros- acting in your stead, they are your proxy.

Unless the chazan is my choice (just like by the kohen) it won't work.

So comparison between the korban needing the Yisraeli proxy to show that he is happy with the Kohen who will do the service and the same thing by the Shaliach Tzibur.

Skip a little to aval im- the kohen can't go further without the agreement of the ba'al so there are a couple of things:

1. Rabbi Gamliel- everyone must agree
2. The Kohen by the Beis HaMikdash- and Yisrael as proxy- you choose your kohen; it's the same thing here.

Time for the Big Picture Review:

The issue of communal government in Judaism is very interesting. Two major possibilities for how communal decisions are best reached:

1. Majority
2. Unanimity

The majority position was already annunciated in early Ashkenaz (found in the Kolbo). There was a problem with someone's cleaning lady so the owner didn't want to throw her out- the majority said they did want to throw her out and the majority rules in that case (it talks about the idea of kahal k'beis din.)

Now there was a group of chachamim who thought unanimity was required (very few who held this but those who held it were biggies, like Rabbeinu Tam.) What is the halakhic structure of a community?

To say community ruling on communal issues is like Beis Din on halakha (analogy) might work. We'd like to run our communities al pi Torah as it were.

If all the players know what the impact is in advance, it might help da'as mikneh (the ability to make this kinyan go.) Don't like to exchange money without it being a kinyan. Want to ratify these transactions. In absence of other means of confirming the kinyan, haskamas kulam will be a sufficient da'as mikneh. Provides da'as mikneh like a contract.

There was a major rediscussion of this issue at the end of the 12th century. The discussion was held between the Beis Din of Mainz/ Worms and the Raviya. There was a big debate- the shailah put forth because the dayan dies in 1199- so redebate this issue (it has to do with tax payment.) The Worms Beis Din says majority rules. Mainz says unanimity would be better. Raviya says Worms is right- majority rule is sufficient. So the majority of German courts said majority rules is sufficient.

Now we come into our case- in the 1230s this issue of chazanus arises- now that you have a pretty firm idea of communal government in midieval Ashkenaz. Until this point have evidence of people who served as Shaliach Tzibur/ Chazan- till then it'd be a Talmid Chacham of note with requisite cantorial skills- apparently not so hard to figure out how to be the Chazan (fairly obvious choices)- explains why didn't hear this question till now (in both France and Germany.)

Now starting to get questions- interesting Raviya that on yamim noraimthe parnasim al bnei doram- someone who gives money but also a Rabbinic figure (interaction with non-Jewish government)- there's a minhag that they become the chazanim. Apparently by the 13th century these methods are not always sufficient.

Magdeburg is Northeastern Germany (not Rhineland)- more outlying Germany- maybe that's part of the reason the question came up. So in light of communal government rules, how do we pick the chazan?

1. Depends on what you hold where you are- communal majority vs. unanimity
2. Even though for the community, the needs of the invidiauls are different from what community as a whole might do- if it's a chazan, has too much to do with religion so might have its own rules.

Saw Or Zarua quoting what... need situation where the minority clamoring not to have this guy.

For Chazzanut still under guise of communal government- tolerance there is that it needs to be more toward unanimity scale (Rhineland communities per Or Zarua)

R' Simcha (rebbe of Or Zarua) said any individual could object. Function of communal gov yet?

PROOF 1: If the chazzan is not able to be motzi everyone, that suggests a problem in his chazanship. Every individual can potentially torpedo the Shaliach Tzibur.

PROOF 2: Korban and makriv (Korban by proxy)

So R' Simcha is using chazan rules here, not kehilla rules.

1. Rhineland (minority actively objects)
2. R' Simcha- afilu yachid

Back to the Or Zarua. Now bringing in R' Yehudah HaChasid (his teacher). Says the rule is that the Shliach Tzibur needs to be beloved because if not when the Tochacha is read in the Torah, he as Shliach Tzibur and Ba'al Korei will wish it upon the people he doesn't like in shul. The chazan has certain powers (spiritual sense). If he is a badly intentioned chazan you can put this upon others.

How does the chazan serve his congregation in general? The power of the chazan is that he is motzi the rabim for his congregants (they can tap into him and he'll be motzi to them.) For R' Yehuda HaChasid, it's the chazan who has the power (of texts/ curses- chance by Tochacha.) Every individual better like him becaue if not the chazan can hurt him.

So what is the role of the Chazan? Is it him being motzi the Tzibur? Or is it him having the power to hurt them?

R' Yehuda HaChasid is 100% a chazan issue (not a communal government issue.)

But Or Zarua says if someone gets appointed and is part of his role and afterwards 1, 2, 3 or4 say they don't like him and not because he did something wrong- no objective evidence that he's really done something wrong- they do not have the ability to cancel/ firehim. No procedure by which you can get rid of people in Beis Hamikdash unless you catch them doing something wrong- so he continues in his post- but he should work hard to make sure everyone likes him.

Teshuva R' Moshe bar Chisdai: He's known as R' Moshe Taku - Might be from the town of Dechov. Asked by Magdeburg rabbanim to get involved (two different views.) He quotes R' Simcha as well, but does so differently- and also Rabbeinu Tam.

R' Moshe Taku thinks that the person writing to him can be an appropriate merutzeh before Hashem. Job of chazan- chazan can have Hashem accept the kahal's prayers. Get Hashem's acquiescence. As far as innate ability, in terms of learning/ chazanus. Says to community- I know job of chazan is also to be merutzeh l'khal. He has to have the approbation of the community.

In order to achieve that approbation- to placate that person- get person to like him. They should like him- he should serve them- more than Or Zarua, who tells the young man you need the entire vote, R' Moshe Taku stresses let's make it work (gives advice) but then he does give a halakhic psak.

What in the world is R' Moshe Taku doing in the middle of an Or Zarua? Nature of this- collect shailos and teshuvos. Helpful to us because otherwise we wouldn't have this piece- gadol hashalom- good to get along.

Let's go after the people who need help- the more learned people should lower themselves a little to ask those who disagree to agree so that there will be an agadah- we saw this concept before by R' Simcha. So Or Zarua said agudah achas. But what does R' Moshe Taku mean here?

Try hard to minimize machlokes -some kind of unanimity. On a theoretical level, good idea for everyone to form an agudah.

How many of community has to agree in order for a new family to settle in there (say there are three shoemakers in town; you don't need a fourth shoemaker- that will take away someone's living) so most said the majority. R' Moshe Taku says R' Simcha said unanimity in that case. So R' Simcha also brings up this idea of unanimity by chazzanut. This means he is saying there are two things that need unanimity:

1. Chazzanut
2. Yishuv

R' Moshe Taku suggests that normally R' Simcha would work off of majority rule but in these issues specifically there should be unanimmity.

So Or Zarua and Moshe Taku disagree as to how to understand R' Simcha. So R' Moshe Taku's saying it's a communal issue that has to do with the position of the chazan. That's R' Simcha's position.

The Refuseniks- don't disagree when a bunch of people are refusing to have him, even if it's a mnority- if it's a group, I'm with the people disagreeing. On the other hand, it seems majority support for this- this pasuk that insists on unanimity- understand majority is in favor- at worst/ at most small minority against this. That a minority can protest is Rhineland minhag.

R' Simcha's unanimity idea doesn't go too far with him. To prove his point he will cite 2 very important predecessors who in the case of cherem hayishuv - now in communal gov. dept. I understand that communal policy- can't understand how you let one person wreck the whole thing. Chazzanus by R' Simcha- equated to Yishuv.

Now see two people who disagree with unanimity for chezkas ha'yishuv so theoretically they would also disagree with the issue by chazanus.

1. Riva: R' Yitzchak ben Asher HaLevi M'Shpira (German) He died in 1133 and is arguably the first Ba'al HaTosfos

Copy of his response in Spire where he wrote that ruvo k'kulo-majority rules.

Rabbeinu Tam is known as requiring unanimity.

If Rabbeinu Tam was around to discuss chezkas ha'yishuv, he would say not here (and he rquired unanimity for so much!) And if Rabbeinu Tam didn't want unanimity for chezkas ha'yishuv then nobody would.

[Daddy, I can imagine you stressing the nobody in that phrase with one of your fierce looks. I miss you.]

One exception: Elvim and Mosros- people who are fast and loose with the rules- people who apparently you can see already that such people are going to be *interesting* additions to your community-what does it mean unanimity by them? Unless you get a unanimous vote to admit them, don't admit them. Elvim and Mosros are gangsters/ strongarmed people/ informers- if they are candidates for settlement, then the suggestion is that they won't pay taxes to the community and will be bad members thereof. If such people want to enter the community, unanimity is required.

So neither Riva nor Rabbeinu Tam agree with R' Simcha of Shpira when it comes to unanimity by yishuv, so R' Moshe Taku is showing we're not bound to this psak.

Eliezer of Orleans says the following: What you have here in that Tosfos piece- I heard him say it in on his way out of shul in Troyes.

(Also, general Rhineland policy is not like Rabbeinu Simcha.)

So R' Moshe Taku is trying to say that one needn't follow R' Simcha of Shpira. This is because R' Simcha of Shpria is the gadol hador of the time- died in 1230- that's why R' Moshe Taku is working so hard to disprove his position.

yeish anashim chata'im- there are people doing the wrong thing, trying to protest the settelemtn of a person when he could be good to the community and isn't harming anyone's parnassa. (Giving mussar against/ about yishuv). Sinful individuals who will block this- someone who does that just being a nasty person. Further oomph on the yishuv case- don't let rabim be stopped from doing a mitzvah.

So we've got Ruchniyus vs. Communal going on here.

Ruchniyus: Or Zarua, R' Yehuda HaChasid
Communal: Rhineland communities, R' Moshe Taku

R' Simcha of Shpira falls on either side depending on how you understand him. Or, R' Moshe Taku rejects R' Simcha.

page 3- Long teshuva of R' Simcha to Or Zarua about comunal you in general

pages 8, 9, 10 and 11- Raviya - communal rules. Maharam is going to talk about majority appointing a chazan.

page 3- Lengthy teshuva of R' Simcha of Shpira- Rabbeinu Simcha might be looking at this as majority rules.

Take a look at the bottom- the taxes were paid to whom? Not paid to federal government- In any case, Rabbeinu Simcha here- individual was liked by the Hegemon (local ruler) and then he is exempt from taxes. So the Jewish community owes X amount- how do you determine which people give what- how do you figure out tax rate that's fair? Is it majority rules in terms of taxes or unanimity in which case you negotiate till everyone agrees? Good example of majority/ minority in a very specific issue.

Particular case of taxes- bill is X and hegemon says you don't have to pay to this particular person. Either case, what's fair- if really there's one more person who should have to pay, but he's not going to, how do you divvy up taxes?

R' Simcha says person should pay anyway and the Hegemon will give it back to him later. Because yachid must be submissive to majority. Sounds like in matters of regular communal government, Rabbeinu Simcha held majority. Ramping these up for particular reasons. The yachid cannot say "Hey, take me into the cheshbon here."

page 3- Interesting because in Ashkenaz fewer people involved- somehow member of the palace. Part of the entourage- would be to make some kind of compromise. Let me pay something. Listen, I do business with you, King, so I'll accept a discount (but not a ptor.) Don't free me from the tax, but give me a discount. My proper role is to give with them- you can't tell the King that you don't accept his largesse- and then even King would accepts to reduce your taxes- and then the money which he doesn't have to pay since it was a discount, he would give over to the kahal. So either:

1. Give the king less (discount) and the rest to the kahal
2. Give the whole thing to the kahal

Either way, give first to the kahal.

Says R' Simcha: "I thought he was doing this out of tzedakah." But, says Rabbeinu Simcha (who holds you have to make the money up) he's doing my psak here- all hands on deck- you can't min hadin accept any money from the king.

Bottom line is that yachid has to participate with the tzibbur.

[Once Jews were pushed out of guilds etc then moneylending became a better option.] Jewish moneylending/ pawnbroking- you got an object as collateral. Jews didn't get money paid back so much as they got to keep the collateral. When comes to Pesach, can you put on the table the fancy stuff you have as collateral? It was a question- you lend money to a church official and they give you a church object- can you/ may you accept it as collateral? Christians in the 11th, even 12th century technically didn't want to lend with interest, so Christians welcomed not just Jewish credit but loads of people. In the 13th century, they decided to be machmir- the Jews can't do this either (not good moneylenders.) King Louis the 9th calls complete Moritorium on collecting Jewish debts- get money owed to Jews back- interesting question. Jew can't lend to other Jews with interest- strawmen (middlemen- lots of very interesting stuff here- very complicated- that's why popular avenue-Talmid of Terumas HaDeshen- gadlus of them- Tzaddikim- late middle agesin Ashkenaz- custom peddlers. Obviously not friendly envrionment but managing- so playing withthe King here.)

Collateral was invariably worth more (cash and carry) - take out Kitvei Yad and someone would pay for them- portable money. Point is doesn't have this position all across the board- may be a communal issue- you don't need unanimity.

Germany: Send to other Beis Din- chacham to chacham (whole discussion of communal government sent around)

page 4- Sefer Chasidim- This is by Rabbi Yehuda HaChasid- generally more complete text (this version) - was somebody who usually got the Aliyah of Tochacha- one time chazan said to fellow "Good luck!" The one who got called up for that aliyah said since you want to give me the Tochacha, call somebody else up, please. Afterwards, the chazan and the oleh made up. He called him up, read the Tochacha and then the guy's daughter dies on motzei shabbos. Even though intentions weren't bad, the problem here was this fellow shouldn't have been so flippant/ should have responded differently- maybe shouldn't have been choshed in that way-

Bashes- Not to overthink someone's words to you

Also believes chazan had mystical power- lifnei m'shuras hadin- watch how you say/ what you say. Call somebody a simple person who is not worried about the Tochacha to give him the aliyah- then it won't happen to him.

It's not just the chazan- efficacy of chazan's power depends very much on where he is with the tzibbur. Simple man, etc (idea by Baruch ben Neriah- Rabbi Kanarfogel suggets) Can't play that game- when called here to go (still blaming oleh a little bit)

Sefer Chasidim- don't call up limping person to limping korban (don't call up person with that mum for that aliya because you are insulting them)- explains practically speaking- parshas ki sisa

page 6- Chazan who hates one of the people- don't call up to Torah

page 7- don't call up to torah

pages 13, 14, 15, 16- Maharam of Rutenberg. The Maharm per Halakha- he is one of the last Ba'alei HaTosfos (he died in 1293) His death signals the end of the Tosafist period. Interesting figure- like the Or Zarua studied in Northern France and Germany also had relationship with Chassidei Ashkenaz- related idea- Ba'al HaTurim- if you go back, Maharam has peirush on the Mesorah- a lot of it taken from similar peirush of R' Elazar of Worms and a R' Yehuda the Chassid thing. Tur also wrote a longer peirush.

Studies of 20 or 22 when Talmud was found - Maharam in period very difficult but does all kinds of analysis. First among Ba'alei HaTosfos to declare Rif and Rambam. Rif and Rambam not accepted in Ashkenaz so much until Maharam- he mentions Rambam being Urim V'Tumim- 3 of Maharam's most famous Talmidim write stuff based structurally on Rif and Rambam- it's Sefard also comes together in Maharam.

Maharam- talk about where stuff is coming from, can come from anyplace- Ashkenaz, Sefarad, French, German, R' Yehudah HaChasid- probable that he knows what time before him- some familiarity with these issues.

R' Simcha of Shpira- rule of women in society. Domestic abuse during Rishonim. R' Simcha of Shpira stalwart defender of women there (and Maharm.)

[tangent on shoes: Yirmiyahu (did he mean Yechezkel here?) doesn't take off his shoes, Moshe takes off his shoes, Yehoshua takes off one shoe. Yechezkel was a hick. Therefore the Tur reasons that Moshe and Yechezkel are from outlying areas, while Yehoshua is from the city. So Moshe and Yechezkel have galoshes. Yehoshua has Italian model of shoes- little thin shoes. This is why they are splled differently- one has a yud, the other does not.]

Whenever you look at the Maharam, you should expect something loaded: Communal government issue- he argues but turn he makes is to suggest that rov/ majority can rule. Whenever have case of what the Maharam calls pol mugdar milta-enhances Jewish community (as opposed to taxes, which doesn't) then majority rules.

L'magder milta- anything community needs- categorize as majority rules. Theories of communal government- majority. If taxes- unanimity. If it's migdar milta then majority (enhance spiritual character of community.)

So to him not only communal but communal regular (putting Chazan in this category.)

So majority rules for chazan per Maharm. So he's communalizing this thing.

Like R' Simcha and certainly like R' Moshe Taku communally. Passages from Or Zaru also presented in teshuvos of the Maharam. In one of them addendum to Moshe Taku and place where he says Moshe Taku is right- this is a communal matter and rov is fine.

Is this lamdus or societal matter?

Lamdus: Same as others, then putting in category
Societal: Possible chzanus situation in Ashkenaz is becoming more acute

Possibly using lomdus due to societal pressures - perhaps finding good chazzanim is getting harder.

page 13- Al asher sh'altem -We're having a spat within our community and can't get a consensus. We want to appoint officers of community (probably refers to communal board.) Not having peace is a terrible thing- we know we don't see eye to eye on just about anything here. When it comes to householders, in that case, when comes to taxes everybody has to have an opinion- however, when it comes to other things you follow the majority. Appointing heads in communities- when it comes to picking chazanim, goes with rov.

Always better or best if you can get everyone to agree (that's what he says.) As a matter of day-in, day-out activity- which elsewhere calls mugdar milta- head off selection of chazanim.

page 14- A lot of teshuvos in his collections- who put them there? Someone tried to do a critical edition of Maharam and to figure out what's Maharam and what's not. Start with Teshuva Zayin-

What was the shailah? This is like the Chizkiyahu case- What does Maharam do? A minority does it and the minority could not be persuaded. Writing to a certain Yitzchak of Wurtzberg- majority agreeing on someone and apparently can't get minority to agree- came along a big Duke (some secular feudal authority) and the Duke tried to intervene and get the Refusers to assent.

So now the Maharam responds: The problem here is who asked the Duke for his opinion?! Duke should not decide Hashem's chazan! Why in the world did you get a non-Jew involved and now that he's involved that's terrible!

Never mind Rutenberg- famous case in the days of Avi HaEzri (Raviya) - city of Koln/ Cologne.

There was a Jew who wanted the Raviya to be honored so one of the Ba'alei Batim called up the Hegemon and said "Can you install the Raviya as chazan?" So the Hegemon (ruler/ church official) took hat from off his head and said "Here is the chazanus." He wanted to show they controlled the Jews in their territory. And the Raviya got upset and didn't even wait for the non-Jew to leave and said "Sir, I can't accept the position of serving God from you" and then he rescinded the job- he also made the Jew who created this mess pay a fine- have to learn that you can't appoint Chazan in this manner- can appoint Chazan but let him make amends.

Some people think there's a stira here- but that's not right. The fact that Hegemon got involved makes a mess- what do I do when non-Jew makes an appointment?

The Investiture Controversy- who gives semikha to the Pope
1077- required HRE to come bow in snow for 3 days to ask forgiveness

[I bring in Charlemagne putting the crown on his own head.]

page 15- In siman chaf-aleph this is Maharam's postscript to R' Moshe bar Chisdai:

Start with nireh lo- if most people want him, let him daven at least bi'ikrai- not permanently- don't have to throw him out because one person doesn't like him.

Only time not to use this chazzan is Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur and Ta'anis (fast days)

Maharam still saying that ratzui l'rov echav is okay, even okay for akrai (not permanently) escept for Rosh Hashana/ Yom Kippur.

Communal government but Rosh Hashana/ Yom Kippur work harder. Maharam- clearly communal government but clearly winking at the other idea.

page 16- Can Bnei HaIr force each other- and force each other here means majority rules.

[sidepoint: Not unheard of for the chazan to be the shochet- also reason mohel should do some davening- serve God with melodious voice and blood.]

What he says here is that the rov can do it! Hiring a chazan not same as appointing (hiring is paying him)

Maharam says, "Listen- a paid chazan will be better." The ideal is that all should agree.

pages 17, 18, 19 and even 20- mostly Teshuvos HaRashba - play some game in Spain

pages 17 & 18- Look at Spain, notice precious little discussion in Spain of appointing Chazanim- either working great (going well) or a different approach that doesn't require same angst

page 22- Rambam sounds like what we saw in the name of Rabbeinu Tam. Best athlete available and has to be really good.

May explain why in Sefarad lands not that much discussion- we have secondary sources on that (Yitzchak Baer's book- Baer writes about Teshuvos HaRashba- but not their halakha.) Abraham Neuman has about 3 lines on chazanus- didn't find much.

What's clear is that for the Rashba the idea of rov mamash is no problem. The Rashba sort of opens to the left of Maharam. Question then is why.

What does communal government say about chazanim?

Spain never put chazan selection into any category other than regular communal government. Assumption- not level of carefulness of Ashkenaz in these issues.

page 19- paying the Chazan- better paid or voluntary

page 20- The Rosh- 13 year old davening m'akrai- (not permanent) - can't be permanent but nothing wrong with that. Question of lomdus- communal gov? Yes to all of the above.

pages 21 and 23- Examples of later chachmei Ashkenaz- Maharik, Rama, R' Yosef Cologne- they interestingly love that R' Simcha of Shpira idea of requiring unanimity is something they like- lots of call for unanimity in this matter (pick that out- that spoke to them)

pages 24 and 25- Dealing here with letter- pesukim in Sefarad lands- they followed the Sefarad model. Happens in Ashkenaz-late Rishonim liked more stringent position. Lengthy teshuva on question of appointing- Maharshal (he begins to mix and match)- contemporary of R' Yosef Kairo.

Let's introduce a fun and exciting topic about women being mohalos or sandakaos.

Women and Mila/ Women and being Sandakaos-

Elisheva Baumgarten wrote an interesting book on the nature of family, childhood, the history of childhood in midieval Jewish society. Good book by Phillipe Aries. Centuries of Childhood- argued that in large measure, not that parents didn't love children but they treated them as little adults.

He says that in Jewish society as in Christian society, in 12th century the women were regarded fairy well- but in the 13th century it starts going in a more negative direction. In the 12th century, there were women preachers. By the 13th century, that was no longer okay.

12th century is the Century of the Renaissance. The French Renaissance- arguably more far-reaching (University of Paris reflects that)- century of individual.

13th century is the Century of Piety. (Ba'alei Tosfos flower in 12th and Chasidei Ashkenaz in 13th century- same kind of argument)

Baumgarten has four proofs which she uses to show decline from the 12th century to the 13th century in women's status:

1. Value of the Ketubah turns against women (goes down, not up)- question of whether this reflects on the status of women or is an economic issue

2. Women as Mohalos- She suggests that the history of halakha- we will see the switch of position. In 12th century some/ many Chachmei Ashkenaz allowed it, but then it gets shut down.

3. Mitzvos Asei She'hazman Grama- Rabbeinu Tam held women may not only do this but also make a bracha. 13th century Ashkenaz, Rabbeinu Tam gets opponents.

4. Woman as Sandak- one who holds baby for bris milah-she would hold the baby and Baumgarten argues that the Maharam of Rutenberg says no- talks about tznius issues.

Problem using halakhic texts for history is that you have to correct first for sugyas, etc. What you may be seeing is ure halakha and nothing societal- need to keep that in mind. It's much more nuanced than people realized.

Machlokes Amoraim between Rav and Rav Yonasan about whether a woman can be a moheles - women not included in bris milah but why are they excluded? Completely as though non-Jewish males or is bris milah for all Jews in which case women are equally able to participate even though they are not obligated in the mitzvah for themselves

Tzipporah obviously did milah (right action per all) - her action and relevance not unequivocal that it's binyan av

Father clearly metzuveh initially- what is relationship between ____ and shaliach

Problem 1: Machlokes between Rav and Rav Yochanan, not historically most common- may have been a mail machlokes

Problem 2: Normally speaking a machlokes almost always pasken like Rav as is R' Yochanan. So what Rishonim play with here is less whose machlokes is right and more like what do we pasken.

Rav: Women cannot be a moheles
R' Yochanan: Women can be a moheles

The middle position is that women may if no man is available.

What we're looking for here is patterns: Not so much that Rishonim have new ways to interpret Gemara as much as run the data, argument until late 13th century most Rishonim allow women as mohalos and then stopped. R' Kanarfogel will argue it's not quite true. He believes you can read Rabbinic literature for history- but you have to be careful.

Look first at the Shiltos- page 1-Shiltos is Aramaic for shealois- book of questions- each week during Gaonic times there would be a derasha, usually a halakhic question that would usually relate to the parshas hashavua- the Shiltos is in that model. This question of women being a moheles is in Vayera- (cham hayom by Avraham)- we have less popular edition of Shiltos here (other one is Mossad Harav Kook- for lomdus it's that one- R' Schachter as a young man ate the Shiltos) Our edition we use because we need the variant texts here.

R' Isai Gaon is author of the Shiltos- so is this a late Gaon or different gaon? From what we can tell Shiltos are of earliest Gaonic works (dates something like 680-750 CE) -one of the earliest published Gaonic works that we have.

His derasha: It would seem the following- Can a woman be a moheles? Do we say that a Jew, whether or not they've had a bris milah are bris milah ready? Not whether you had a bris milah but whether they are eligible. They would be no better (women) than the non-Jew who had a bris milah. Or do we say that all Jews are under the ____ of milah- not that women don't ned a bris milah but doesn't have orlah problems?

Answers with a sugya in the Gemara (one of key activities during Gaonic period was to teach Gemara to hamon ha'am)- Gemara exists- not a lot of people learning it (very excellent vehicle.)

Avodah Zara 27- Gemara starts with the fact that a non-Jew cannot be a mohel. Dira bar Papa said (Rav Papa's son) quoted Rav who on the question of a non-Jew said "V'ata es brisi tishmor"- and R' Yochanan said "Himol yimol"- so we understand why according to both of them a non-Jew is no good.

Himol yimol- Jewish people, not others- why'd they learn it out from different sources? It's based on whether or not they allow for women mohalos.

V'ata es brisi tishmor- you must be in bris to do it- you have to do it, too. Since women cannot physically have a bris, they can't do it for others either.

Hayimol yimol- Women are included here, hence they are able to perform a bris.

Rav or R' Yochanan- halakha is like R' Yochanan- first opinion out of the Gemara is that women are allowed to do bris milah- this is discussed in the Gemara - Rav and R' Yochanan- halakha is like R' Yochanan- Shiltos allowing women to do so (Tzipporah- can you/ should you learn from Tzipporah?)

Shiltos doesn't seem to tell us what we might say logically- has discussion about non-Jews and women - why go with safek if you can go with vaday - might be that Shiltos already saying.

R' Yochanan - 3rd century (death date 289) considered editor of the Talmud Yerushalmi (finished well before Bavli)

Halachos Gedolos written by the Bahag- Machlokes about who wrote the Halachos Gedolos- Rishonei Sefarad think R' Shimon Kayera lived in mid-9th century and wrote this (was a Gaon)

Rishonei Ashkenaz attribute Halachos Gedolos to R' Yehuda, the Blind Gaon- did put together collection of halakhos called halakhos pesukos- break Gemara down into bodies of halakha

Chachmei Sefarad are more stuck with Gaonim than Chachmei Ashkenaz are. Gaonim are predecessors of Chachmei Sefarad. Rav___ worries about them (by subtraction)


There's a Tosfos on Meguleh daf daled- Tosfos talking about al hanisim and here psak that was shtupped into the Tosfos.

Let's look at psak here on page 2-

He makes explicit that when no Jewish men who know how to do the bris but women do know how, she does it and she is 100% okay. What doesn't say- since R' Yochanan is the winner- tough fight to pasken like them- if men are available, he should do it- transfers over to Europe- the Ba'al HaItur is a Rishon- R' Yitzchak Bar Abamari of Lunal in Southern France- south of Provence. HaIturi is 12th century Rishon and is contemporary of Rivid of Posquierres. Rivid may have trumped him in the polls.

R' Yitzchak ben Aba Meiri- the Sefer HaItur is not the easiest sefer to find things in- so the Ba'al Ha'Itur accepts- (Ba'al HaMeor is another contemporary of theirs) - same idea, women can but shouldn't be first people called. First men, if no men, then women can do it.

page 4- Rambam- the Rambam talks about a man who hasn't yet gotten a bris, Eved Canaani, Isha and Katan are all malei without man (they are all second responders.) If a non-Jew did a milah don't have to do full thing again- do hatafas dam bris- don't have to redo surgery- so Rambam again expands category of who is in there- paskens like the Geonim.

Let us look at the Hagahos Maymoniyos- (As for the Rambam, Provencalian Sefer Haitur is holding with the Geonim)

So Hanhagos Mamoniyos are only Ashkenaz thing on this page (except for the Rivid)- he is ringing in- where is Ashkenaz in light of the Rambam? If you look at the Rambam- Hagahos Mamoniyos authored by a studnet of Maharm M'Rutenberg- let's see what he say:

Block letter Aleph: Says Ramban obviously paskens like R' Yochanan and not like Rav. There are 3 Rishonei Ashkenaz who agree with the Rambam - but which part? That woman is kosher? That's she's second place? Who are the three people here? 1) R' Simcha M'Shpira 2) R'eim- R' Eliezer M'Metz, author of a halakhic work called the Sefer Yeraim. Where is Metz? Easternmost France- very close to Rhineland Germany though- is Metz French or German? Sefer Mitzvos also here- the Northern French are called semag- Sefer Mitzvos Gadol. The Smag is a frenchman- sounds like paskening that women may be mohalos. Everyone seems to be meikil. (Nothing about second responders, though.)

There are manuscripts of the Sefer HaMitzvos which have a mistake- say R' Yochanan prohibits this, which is not true. This tzitut may have caused Prof Spiegel of Bar Ilan to write his article- version of Sefer Hamitzvos that allows it and versions that don't. Some point in 13th century the tide turns against this lenient position- some people try to fix the text of Sefer Hamitzvos to have him assir it. Who prohibits a woman from being a mohel?

page 11 - Tosfos prohibits a woman from being a mohel. Spiegel reasons Tosfos on Avodah Zara were put together late 13th century- Tosfos Rabbeinu Peretz as it were- everything humming along until 1240 - everyone holds women can be a moheles. Then the bar goes down- some people try to make the Smag say like the Tosfos.

(Key variant Tosfos is on pages 9 and 10)

Earlier & better manuscripts show Semag saying okay, then the later ones having him say no.

page 5- Sefer Yeraim- R' Eliezer in Metz, Talmid of Rabbeinu Tam, dies in 1198- in between culturally and rabinically considered German. Very sensitive, theoretical sefer, almost like Sefer HaChinuch but written before. The Semak in Northern France works off of the Sefer Yeraim. So Re'aim- Rabbeinu Simcha to Semag (very reasonable lineup.)

Let's see what he says: A woman who doesn't have a bris milah is included.

page 6- This is the Raviya- another student of R' Eliezer from Metz. This is in mesachtas Shabbos because discussed the issue of milah here.

Where there is no Jew who knows how to make a bris but a non-Jew knows how- don't use a non-Jew, and if you did, it is pasul and you need hatafas dam bris again. But you could use a woman. (A Jewish woman.) A non-Jew may not, but a woman may. The idea is to get the best mohel you can- always better to get the best male athelete (big man) available- footnote in kesav yad- woman is fine but use the best man available.

Can't prove that Rabbi Yochanan says women are only good b'dieved.

The Raviya is going back and to __ Habahag- Gaonim- Try to avoid machlokes trap- Raviya even though more restrictive than some of the Germans- Germany still

page 7- Or Zarua- Blames the psak on the Shiltos in Parshas lech-Lecha . Quotes a Gaonic work called The Barbecue even though our Gemara says we don't learn from Tzipporah, nevertheless we pasken this way. So he gives a simple YES.

So the Raviya is the one German holdout. Everyone else seems to be saying YES without the pecking order.

[fun point: The Or Zarua raises the following issue- and what if the mohel is a Jew but a meshumad- don't know what to do! Maybe side to allow it- except for the fact that meshumad is better than a woman- original tzivuy- he has all the ma'ailos- and for the proof Gemara doesn't use meshumad as possible nafkamina between R' Yochanan and Rav. So meshumad has fewer disabilities than those raised in the Gemara. But that kills off the meshumad- a meshumad is not having kavanas kol kach retzuyos- not having the right idea.]

page 8- Woman has 2 or 3 children who die because of bris (hemophiliac) - quoting Gemara itself which says don't necessarily learn from Tzipporah

skip pages 9 and 10, go to 11- page 11- Tosfos decides to assir it and assir it completely. We pasken like Rav. Tosfos says to pasken like Rav. Even though in terms of mechanics of Gemara usually pasken like R' Yochanan in this section we pasken like Rav.

Methodology: These rules of psak only in place if I have no other way to solve the machlokes than to do like so. But only in absence of other indications.

Tosfos says there is an indication.

Here the halakha is like Rav because the Gemara here is discussing each Amora here had a motto/ slogan. Both agree a non-Jew can't do milah- Mol Hamol vs Brisi. Tosfos says there's a point in Gemara where Gemara brings a powerful raaya to Rav's opnion. He cites a braisa in the time of R' Yehudah haNasi that quotes rav's position.

So if you have a beraisa from R' Yehudah HaNasi then you have to pasken like Rav. So most follow that indication. Beraisa says v'ata es brisi tishmor so gives more credence to Rav.

Baha- In this case the halakha k'rav- it holds like him (the beraisa)- raw material that will lead to this material - Tosfos says the Bahag paskens that a woman can do milah. So they say we understand that we're against the Bahag. Only bothered because there's a Gemara in Kiddushin where it says ka'asher tziva oso- Gemara there darshens oso and not osah. Talmudic exegetical question, if hold women could but shouldn't, it works for the Bahag. According to us, doesn't make as much sense (why need to differentiate? You'd think obviously she can.)

If father's not there, Beis Din must go see/ find a mohel. So it means the woman is peturah from doing the milah- in finding people to do the milah. So that's what it means in the Gemara in Kiddushin (when differentiates oso and not osah.) Till 1250 everyone agreed- till 1260 the clock struck 12.

Obviously you can say all internal halakhic climate.

Baumgarten says pietism in Catholic world and then goes over to Judaism- takes a bit in 1250.

Once Tosfos changes their mind and here everyone changes their mind/ try to undo it (Machiavellian) this shita even strated little before (people who tried to get the Smag to live up with him.)

pages 9-10: Rabbi Kanarfogel's taanah here- Spiegel knows this- look at Tosfos R' Elchanan and Tosfos Rosh MiShantz- all say the same thing- so it's a Tosfos problem (all agree with pointed Tosfos that paskens like the Rav- that's what they say.)

Problem: We have dates on these Tosfos and they are from before now so Tosfos Rosh Mishantz no later than 1210. So well before R' Eliezer M'Metz who dies in 1198 this shita of assaring (psak like Rav) is around before now. Not having your chronological data right- chronology is all off!

Quite possible R' Elchanan comes first saying that it is assur. (Fact that it's France versus Germany is interesting but not a chronological proof.)

Baalei HaTosfos viewed themselves as equal to Gaonim- Ba'alei Tosfos regard themselves almost like Amoraim of their day. Mishna and Gemara are inviolate. Look at pasuk first, then commentaries. We tend to have bias toward knowing French Tosfos- if you want to look at full Tosfos, bring in the German ones- mesorah selected what it has selected. This Tosfos in Avodah Zara is late-based or earlier French Tosfos (significantly earlier). French assur it well before 1250.

Germans said yes.

French said no.

Smag a little different.

a) following Sefer Yeraim

b) has Spanish piece

pages 9-10- The printed Tosfos that we have- standard Tosfos- is shortest that we have. The variant Tosfos - Tosfos Rosh MiShantz and R' Elchanan etc- almost always longer treatments- our Tosfos underwent editing (compression.) Part of the reason that printed Tosfos is hard to learn is due to the compression of several generations of Ba'alei HaTosfos- can have people who didn't end up with each other together (cutting and pasting)- editors of Tosfos put togethr different generations sometimes (don't always get as many citations and get connections blurred otherwise.)

Printed Tosfos- chic choc- hard to follow the moves. Nothing new in printed Tosfos- argument from earlier texts- something new happening there- anything you find in printed you'll find in earlier as well. Rosh involved in Tosfos Rosh- most Tosfos on daf are Tosfos Rash Mishantz - most common name is Tosfos v'Eliezer. Everyone used to think it was French Toues- others say it's Turchasin- don't know R' Eliezer MiTuch that well (they're all contemporary, by the way.) One who is least known as separate lamdan is R' Eliezer miTuch- seems like he was mostly an editor.

The Mordechai is an exact contemporary of Rosh, Rabbeinu Peretz. The Mordechai did such a good job doing Reader's Digests that the originals got lost. The printed Tosfos in Avodah Zara are late 13 century.

No private Torah- no copyright (in Ashkenaz) - you can import/ export stuff all the time- part of the challenge here. Avodah Zara is Tosfos Rabbeinu Peretz- Urbach's forensics are fun.

page 14- The Sefer Mitzvos Katan by Yitzchak ben Yosef of Korbeil- the Smak writen somewhere around 1265- called amudo goleh- idea of Smak was to create literally almost Kitzur Shulchan Aruch- broken up into Sheva Amudim. When he takes up issue of milah, if there's no father around, it goes to Beis Din- only 2 players who need apply. Women need not even apply. Everybody loses their minds once ___ brings.

Not being mechadesh anything here- taking women out of the discussion but women's non-role has been around for quite a while.

Hagahos haRif- Rabbeinu Peretz- in spare time wrote footnotes to the Smak. No one talks about women here- hundred years French chumra on this topic.

So we see shift it Germany et all? Well, once you get printed Tosfos and Smak- becomes almost a slam in Ashkenaz halakha- ballgame over. When do we find out final exit of women in Germany as mohalos- at some point losing your edge- The Smak didn't have to get it from the printed Tosfos- not that he's following a new position!

Fascinating differences between Smag and Smak- Smag used Rambam every 5 minutes. The Smak- number of times quotes Rambam, about 10- closer to 3 or 5 really. Smak doesn't quote. Smag who was in Spain- having to do with learning. Women as sandak- up through mid/ late 13th century. Women would take baby and hold on their laps until Maharam from Rutenberg - comes and knocks whole thing on its head. Change here which reflects changed status of women.

Kuf nun hey- read starting from eino nireh li klal- I don't like it - not a kosher minhag- I don't like this minhag which is being practiced in many places that women come into the men's side and the baby is circumcised in her lap. Not derekh eretz (even if the mohel is her husband) - not nice to have a woman all decked out here in front of the men and the Shechina.

1. Not good shul policy/ public policy so logistical
2. Woman is not a milah attendant- has no chiyuv to give her son a bris- she's grabbing a mitzvah that's more of a men's mitzvah

Whoever can protest should protest!

Baumgarten says: "Listen- Maharam is arguing fairly soft halakha here- second part don't get. What is concept of taking mitzvot?" Whoever does mitzvah takes mitzvah- Rashi in Chumash- positive concept- chatifus- Bilam getting up in the morning- Jews want to grab mitzvos.

Chatifas Mitzvot- used as encouragment- love to grab mitzvot. No Talmudic chatifas mitzvot- turned around positive Talmudic usage and applied in somewhat artificial way- why is that? Gender theory that need to remove women from public roles.

page 19- Gemara (gold coins) - taking mitzvot
page 17- Women being sandak with family
page 18- Before Maharam, women not coming into shul

page 19- Explicit Gemara which says not nice to take mitzvot from other people- have to pay cash (Tosfos says too literal kind of pay)

page 16- Women as Sandakaos- It doesn't seem to me ot be at all a good idea for the women to serve as the Sandak in the men's shul. To have a woman all made up between men and Shechina.

The first thing the Maharam says is:

1. Not Tznius
2. Why are we making the woman into a main player when it's not about her- they're trying to grab away the mitzvah from the men!

Baumgarten's point: It's not completely tznius issue is really what's bothering him.

Idea of chatifah- grabbing mitzvos. There's a notion that Jewish people are like an ari and they grab mitzvot.

Chatifas mitzvot- grab extra mitzvot usually a positive. Here the Maharam makes it a negative. Baumgarten gives this as an example of the attitude changing.

page 17- Teshuvos u'Psukim book- a child was born and fight between grandmothera s to who would be the Sandakes

page 18- R' Yaakov HaGozer - either a barber or mofel- and his father- were cutters. (Anan ben david- Karaite had requirement to use scissors for milah.) This R' Yaakov HaGozer - early 13th century work- this was imported into a halakhic collection called Sefer Ha'Asifus by German student of Rokeach an dRaviya.

The women of the Ba'al HaBris- could be sandak or kfoter- brings the baby b'hadar to Beis Kneses- as soon as the davening is over, the Ish goes out to take the baby from her- this text clearly holds women doesn't go in typically. Doesn't mean it's assur - just that this text shows the rov cited by Maharam isn't so Rov. What does Maharam mean by Rov? Rov on his particular area- where he lives! Definitely possible that Maharam concerned about it in HIS area. This text may date from 1215-1230- well before Maharam's day already places where Sandakah is not so ubiqutious.

(Rabbi Kanarfogel is suggesting you need to know how big a change the Maharam is making. Maharam's working with spiritual vs halakhic proofs.) Maharam's dates are approximately 1220-1293. Clearly writing here after 1271.

MOST IMPORTANT POINT: Bigger problem with whole scenario is Chatifas Mitzvos question- sources well before Maharam that talk about Chatifas Mitzvos concept in the negative sense. In fact it's even already on record- having to do with a bris milah. Therefore a question- not as holey (full of holes) an argument as the milah argument but again, you need to be aware places already in early 13th century where women are already not in the shul. Therefore mharam is famous in his day as one of the last figures in Ashkenaz for closing a lot of circles- R' Gershom had already done away with idea that women couldn't demand a divorce. Problem got to the point where women were using this too much- the R' Gershom had to get away from it- Takanah of Geonim.

Maharam- in fact all Maharam is trying to do is finally close the door. Hyperbole- not so many women who were doing this- want to finally close the door. Same sort of thing by women as Sandak- women had come out of that role before this. Maharam wants to standardize all of these positions. Anachronisms- way of trying to close th edoor existing already-

What happens if somebody's about to schecht a beheima of someone runs in and covers the blood? 2 separate mitzvos but really a compound mitzvah.

The Gemara says R' Gamliel required that he pay a big fine- already concept of chatifas ha'dam negative- Whole discussion of Tosfos- can we do this- knas- fines not levied. That's big problem Tosfos has- Tosfos gives a case where the Chazan called him up for an aliyah and the Chazan calls up the Amora and someone else runs up instead- so Rabbeinu Tam had simple solution- the lane who chopped the idea gives him a chicken to schect (which also has two brachos.) The Ri didn't like this solution- the Ri said you have to pay the fine.

Rabbeinu Tam said we don't have to collect fines because the answerer who says "Amen" gets more reward (on brachos.)

Maharam not scradical in announcing chatifas mitzvot.

page 20- The one who was supposed to be a Chazan- he wrote Piskei Mahariach-

His take on sugya in Bava Kama- someone was assigned to be the Mohel and a ssecond Mohel came and grabbed the chance- he did the mitzvah. This case Rabbeinu Tam said sorry- not much I can do for you- can't put a fine on you.

But idea of Chatifas Mitzvot- specifically in terms of Milah (Mohel grabbing them or other Mohel issue) or guy taking another guy's aliyah- Riva says what Rabbeinu Tam says- let him answer Amen to the guy's bracha- he'll make it up. Penalties not as sever here.

Baumgarten also talks about how women were allowed to make brachos on mitzvos asei shehazman grama- ongoing process.

Ongoing halakhic process- here to be able to really date/ locate Rabbinic texts- you want to use before you use them- at that point you're on much safer ground-within halakhic discussions before- go back to drawing board to try again.




Chai18 said...

see Rav Moshe's teshuva on Yom Hashoah and how he deals with the Crusades in contrast to the Chmielnicki Massacres for an interesting look at how Rav Moshe elicits a halachic psak from a historical assessment

man with the black hat said...

I really appreciate all the effort you put into these posts! Sometimes I feel like I am going through Stern myself.

chardal said...

>Minhagei Maharal:

Maharil! not Maharal. Sheesh! :)