Monday, November 30, 2009

Clarifying the Obvious

Rav Avraham Chaim Naeh, zt”l, used to publish important halachic rulings in a certain Torah journal. Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach, zt”l, took great pleasure in perusing the halachic opinions whenever they came out in the journal. But one time Rav Shlomo Zalman noticed an exceedingly obvious halachah which didn’t seem to belong in the journal at all. The article mentioned that it is clearly forbidden from the Torah to squeeze grapes for any reason on Shabbos. Since this is clear from the gemara to the halachah it seemed absolutely superfluous and out of place among the many novel issues discussed in the journal.
Rav Shlomo Zalman wondered what it was doing there and at his first meeting with Rav Naeh he politely requested that he explain why it was there at all.
“I am glad you asked,” said Rav Naeh. “Unfortunately, I have found that to some this halachah is anything but simple. Not too long ago I was very pained that a certain talmid chacham who is involved in the difficult mesechtos of nezikin but has not really learned much Orach Chaim was confused on this point. When we finished praying on Shabbos night we had a delightful conversation which ended with a shock. The man declared joyously, ‘And now I will go home to fulfill Rava’s statement in Bava Basra 97: “a person can squeeze a cluster of grapes and say kiddush on it...”’
Rav Naeh continued painfully, “I learned from this man that this halahcah is by no means straightforward to all. I felt that I had to teach those that he may have mislead, so I included this halachah in the journal. We both know that Rava squeezed the grapes on Erev Shabbos, but sadly this man erred in this and we need to make a clear statement so people will know that his ‘interpretation’ is a violation of a Torah prohibition!”


Anonymous said...

Nice brief and this post helped me alot in my college assignement. Thanks you seeking your information.

Anonymous said...

Opulently I to but I dream the post should prepare more info then it has.