"Initially one would establish a court in another place and nullify [the get]. Rabban Gamliel the Elder decreed that one may not do so,
mipnei tikkun olam (Gittin 32a)."
The commandment to love and care for others, perhaps the most important in the entire Torah, while applicable to all is phrased in the context of one’s friend or neighbour. It is actually much harder to love a neighbour than a stranger. With the latter we have no complaints over loud noise from a barbeque party, overhanging trees and blocked driveways.
Most of us like people in general, it’s just that when we actually interact with them that we notice their faults and may get into the occasional argument.
One of the primary requirements of a get is that it be written
lishma, with the husband's intent of divorcing the specific women. This is derived from the biblical phrase vkatav lah, "and he [the husband] shall write for her a book of separation". The Mishna (Gittin 24b) goes so far as to invalidate a get even when a man married to two women with the same name instructs the sofer to write a
Timing is everything. Not only is picking the right time to do something crucial but recording that time can be equally important. This is especially true in matters of commerce where the proper or shall we say improper dating of documents can have huge financial implications.
How does one measure greatness in Torah learning? We can glean an important insight from the Talmudic discussion regarding the status of gittin in Bavel. As we have discussed in our prior posts the Mishna requires that those who bring a get from outside the land of Israel must say “before me it was written and before me it was signed”. This was needed as testimony that the get was written lishma something that could not be assured for foreign written gittin.
One would not expect the laws of divorce to be affected by one's location. Thus it comes as a bit of a surprise to open masechet Gittin and read "one who brings a get from across the sea must say 'in front of me it was written and in front of me it was signed" (Gittin 2a). Such a declaration is absent when the get is being written and delivered in Israel. Why the difference?
After detailing the laws of the suspected adulteress the Mishna moves to masechet Gittin. While the law of the Sotah is no longer applicable the laws of gittin are unfortunately very much so.