Eiruvin 95b: Tefillin for Women

June 18, 2013 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
In Talmudic times, it was common for one to wear tefillin all day long. As the Torah does not limit its observance in any way, there would seem to be no reason to limit time spent wearing them to a few minutes a day. Even the exemption from wearing tefillin at night and on Shabbat is subject to much Talmudic dispute, with many asserting that Shabbat z’man tefillin hu (“Shabbat is a time for [the wearing] of...
Continue Reading »

Eiruvin 81b: Cash Cow

June 12, 2013 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
As more and more of our economy runs on credit, as we increasingly pay for purchases with debit cards or even smartphones, the necessity—or even the capability—of using cash is becoming less and less common. Truth be told, this not a modern phenomenon. “Rabbi Yochanan said: According to the words of the Torah, money acquirers ownership; yet why was it said that one must lift an object [in order to acquire ownership]? It is a [...
Continue Reading »

Eiruvin 80b: Fighting Over a Crust of Bread

June 10, 2013 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
For thousands of years, a meal was defined by the eating of bread. Not only as did bread serve as an appetizer, the main course itself was consumed with bread. The term lelafet et hapat, to spread the food on the bread, is a fair indication of how most foods were eaten, and we can readily understand why korbanot were generally accompanied with loaves of bread. The command to eat the korban Pesach with “bread...
Continue Reading »

Eiruvin 69b: Following in Parents' Footsteps

June 06, 2013 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
I dedicate the thought below to the memory of my mother, Rachel bat Chaim (Ruth Kelman) z”l, whose yahrzeit we observe today. May we celebrate smachot.    Based on the extensive discussion in the Talmud, it would appear that someone neglecting to contribute some food—a necessary component for the establishment of an eiruv—was a common occurrence.  As we have previously noted, in such a...
Continue Reading »

Eiruvin 69: One Big Happy Family

June 03, 2013 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
The concept behind an eiruv is that the people making it join together as one large household. Each household contributes some food, which is put in a common area, and all are welcome to come and eat. The area within the eiruv must be enclosed, and there is much Talmudic discussion on what exactly constitutes an enclosure. The typical Talmud eiruv was made in a courtyard of no more than a few homes; occasionally, a...
Continue Reading »