Timtum Haleiv

September 13, 2006

11. 11:2. Isurei achila. On the issue of Timtum Haleiv. The Mokor is Yoma 39a– R’ Yishmo’eil– ahl tikri v’nitmeisem bohm ello u’n’tamtem bohm. The Maharshal in YSHSH in Yevomos 14:7 says (from the m’kubolim) that they are m’tamteim “es haleiv v’es haseichel.” The question is: is it the metzi’us of the food, or the fact that you were oveir the issur through a achiloh assuroh.

Reb Moshe in OC I:53 says that relying on an eid echod is oneis gomur and not an aveiroh klal. The shver says that this means there is no timtum haleiv.

But see Reb Moshe in OC II:88) where he brings a t’shuva of the Chasam Sofer regarding a handicapped girl in the following situation. If she stayed at home she would never develop, and would and remain an einoh bas daas. If, however, the parents sent her to a special school, she could potentially attain normal-range mental function. However, the school was in a non-Jewish area and there was no possibility of providing her with kosher food. The Chasam Sofer said that ahl pi din it is muttor, but he recommends against sending her for the following reason. If they send her she will become a basr daas and chayevess b’mitzvos. After she becomes chayeves b’mitvos, she might do aveiros because of her earlier timtum haleiv. Therefore, it is better that she remain an einoh bas da’as instead of being a bas da’as with a leiv m’tumtom. From this it seems that treifus is metamteim es haleiv even if eaten b’heter (the girl was not a bas daas.) However, R’ Moshe brought the Chasam Sofer primarily to say that in the case at hand, where the child could never reach a madreigo of da’as, the Chasam Sofer’s psak is not relevant.

The M’chaber in YD 81:7 paskens that a Jewish baby is allowed to have a non-Jewish wet nurse, but discourages doing this because the non-kosher food will harm the baby spiritually. The Ramoh there also says that a Jewish woman who needs to eat non-kosher food for health reasons (Shach and Taz– piku’ach nefesh) should not nurse her baby because the non-kosher food will harm him. (The Minchas Osher I bring below points out that the mokor of the Ramo is the Rashbo in Yevomos 114, and the Rashbo holds that a woman’s milk is not treif, and that the problem is the treifeh food she ate before nursing.) The Gro brings as a mokor for this the Medrosh in Parshas Shemos. The possuk says they brought a nursing woman from the Jews, and the Medrash brought down by Rashi says that Moshe refused to nurse from an Egyptian woman because he was going to grow up and be a Navi so how could he eat non-kosher food. So at least we see that the treifus would have affected him to the extent that it would interfere with his ability to speak to the Ribbono Shel Olom.

The Ran in his 11th droshoh says that if nevi’im were available all the time, we would be better off having nevi’im paskening for us, because if a rov paskens and gets it wrong, it’s like a doctor making a mistake and prescribing a poison instead of a healing medicine. But then he says that it could be that the mitzvoh of listening to the chachomim counterbalances the timtum haleiv. (By the way, it appears that the Ran assumes for a dovor poshut that hachro’oh of m’tzius is not a lo bashomayim hi problem, as the Maharitz Chajes says in Yoma in the sugya of the Mohn showing who is right and who is wrong in dinei momonus and ishus, and not like Rashi in Eiruvin on the sugya of using fish skin for tfillin.)

The Abravanel in D’vorim 17:4) disagrees with the Ran. He holds that a person is never harmed by following the Chachamim. If it is mutar then it cannot be harmful. To tell the truth, it’s hard to know exactly what the Ran holds, but the Abravanel is clear. Apparently, the Abravanel holds that the chiyuv chattos of a yochid she’ossoh b’horo’as Beis Din is that he is called a shogeig only as far as the chiyuv korbon, but not for anything else.

In Chullin 5a the Gemora brings that Eliohu ate meat brought by crows from Achov’s kitchen. The Gemora asks, but it’s shchitas mumor and treif mamosh? The Gemora answers ahl pi hadibbur shani. Rashi learns that it means that it was a horo’as sho’oh that allowed him to eat treifeh meat. It appears that despite his having eaten this treifus, his ko’ach nevu’oh was not hurt or diminished, unlike the Medrosh in Shmos. But the Ritvo and the Maharsho both learn the ahl pi hadibbur meant that Eliohu knew b’n’vu’oh that it was shechted by a ma’amin, and not by Achov or one of his ovdei avodoh zoroh.

Reb Meir Simcha in Parshas Vo’eschanan, Dvorim 6:11, on Batim m’lei’im kol tuv, brings the Gemora in Chulin 17 about afilu kadli d’chaziri. Then he says a tremendous chiddush. The reason that the following possuk says “Hishomer lecho pen tishkach es Hashem” is “ki teva dvorim ho’assurim shemitamteim es haleiv…v’afilu im ochlon b’hetter…v’lochein y’challeil shabbos l’choleh v’lo ya’achilenu n’veiloh.” I think that RMS’ shittoh is the most extreme possible application of the concept. However, it really is no different than what Chazal say about Y’fas To’ar, a hetter that applies only in wartime, and which, despite the hetter, carries grave spiritual risk.

See the Minchas Osher in Shmini page 102: he brings the Rosh in Yoma 8:14 who brings the Ram MeiRuttenberg that it’s better to shecht for a choleh on Shabbos than to give him neveiloh, because (but it’s not poshut at all that this is what the Rosh and Ram mean) Shabbos is huttroh for the choleh but neveiloh is still neveiloh and only d’chuyoh, i.e., Shabbos is issur gavro and neveiloh is issur cheftzoh. (Brought in OC 328:14.) He brings the Ohr Somei’ach 6 Chometz Umatzoh 7 that answers the Shagas Aryeh’s question on the Rambam who says matzoh shel tevel is a mitzvoh habo’oh b’aveiroh, but it should be asei docheh lo sa’aseh; RMS answers that an aveiroh can never be a mitzvoh. Asei docheh is only when the aveiroh is with A and the mitzvoh is with B. RMS asks but why does Tosfos in Kiddushin 38 asks that Matzoh should be docheh Chodosh. This kashe is soseir RMS’ yesod. RMS answers that Chodosh is only an issur gavro, since it’s tolui b’zman. But then RMS asks on himself from Yevomos 20 where it says that min hatoroh yibum is docheh issur lahv. So the Minchas Osher answers that kashe by saying that all issurei biyoh are issur gavro, not issur cheftzoh. (He began the piece by saying that this is why the Rambam titled treifus “Ma’acholos Assuros,” but titled znus “Issurei Bi’oh.” Although he brings exceptions, he says this is because ma’acholos are issur cheftzoh but bi’oh is issur gavro.)

See also the Minchas Osher on page 105 who klers whether the timtum is the reason for the issur or the issur is the reason for the timtum. He brings the Ramban Shmos 22:30 who says that the smichus of Anshei Kodesh to the dinim of treifus are because the tzivui to avoid treifus is because they are molid “ohvi v’gassus ru’ach banefesh.” But, he brings the Maharal that starts out contradicting the Ramban. Tiferes Yisro’el 8. The Maharal says taht the Torah is not a medical work. It is only because of the issur that they are pogeim. This is why the Gemora in Yoma says “Aveiroh” m’tamtemes. It is the Aveiroh that causes the damage. But the Maharal later says “and even if treifus is m’tamteim,” that’s not the reason the Torah assered them.

The sefer Mishuchan Gavo’ah here brings from the Ramban (discussed above) that the ma’acholim that the Torah assered were assered because they are bad for our health, and brings the Abravenel (discussed above) says that the Torah is not a medical book, and that these dinim are to protect our neshamos, not our bodies. He brings from the Magid from Ritteveh, Reb Yissochor Ber, that he heard from Reb Chayim Brisker that once the Torah made them assur, they are indeed mazik the body, as we see the din of timtum halev. He brings from the Brisker Rov that according to Reb Chaim, the timtum is only where al pi din the thing is assur to eat, but not for a choleh. He brings a story from the Briskers that the Rambam once visited Teiman, and met a great Gaon there, with whom he began a correspondence. Once he got a question from him that showed apikursus, and he refused to continue the correspondence. When the Teimani kept sending him inquiries, the Rambam told him to be bodeik the local kashrus. He later got a letter from the Gaon that he did investigate, and found that one local shochet had been ma’achil neveilos and treifos to the community for the past 13 years.


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