Mar 292017

Study Guide Bava Batra 66

The gemara brings a braita relating to the difference in halacha between a tube created and attached to the ground or attached to the ground first and then hollowed out while attached to the ground.  If the former case, it is considered a vessel and therefore water can’t be passed through there to fill up a mikveh as it is considered mayim sheuvim.  In the latter case, it is considered attached to the ground and is not a vessel adn therefore one can fill up a mikveh through there.  The gemara asks a question – this doesn’t seem to match Rabbi Eliezer or the rabbis opinions.  First the gemara needs to establish which argument between Rabbi Eliezer and the rabbis is the question referring to and then it answers which opinion in that argument matches the braita.

Mar 282017

Rav and Shmuel choose sides in the Rabbi Akiva debate with the rabbis about whether one sells with a good eye or a bad eye.  And discussions are held regarding their respective decisions.  One who sells a house without specifying, what other items does it include?  Millstones, locks, keys, ovens, etc?

Mar 272017

Further attempts to support or weaken Rav Dimi are brought but are rejected.  When one sells a property, it doesn’t include a well or cistern (if it is not specified as learned previously).  But does one have an accessway to get there or does one need to buy an access route?  There is a debate between Rabbi Akiva and the rabbis about this.  Is their debate based on a well known debate between them: does a seller sell with a “good” eye (includes more in the sale) or a “bad” eye (includes less in the sale)?  Or is there a different debate going on here and that debate comes from a different mishna?

Mar 262017

When one says (or writes in a contract) that one is selling “part of the land” – is the intention half or not?  Different uses of the word “part” may mean different things.  Raba brings a few cases and explains the differences.  However, Abaye disagrees with him and thinks there is no distinction between the cases as each can be explained in the same manner.  A Levite can sell one property and stipulate that the owner give him the Levite tithes.  How can one do this if it is selling something that does not yet exist?  The assumption is he is retain rights to part fo the land.  Reish Lakish makes an assumption that one can learn from here to a different case and Rav Zevid and Rav Pappa debate what the relevance of Reish Lakish’s statement is.  Rav Dimi discusses the difference between a sale with no specification, one where it was stipulated that the buyer acquires the depths and the heights, and one where the buyer acquired from the depths of the earth to the height of the sky.  What items are included in each case?  The gemara tries to prove his statement from the next mishna, but then rejects the proof.

Mar 232017

In what types of cases can one not build an opening (window or door) from his house?  In extending an existing door, there are issues regarding not only seeing into the neighbor’s property but also in doing so, one gains rights to more space of the commonly shared courtyard as the space directly in front of the door belongs to the owner of the house.  What if one has something that juts out into public space?  There are two stories brought of people who came before rabbis who ruled they had to get rid of it but the rabbis themselves had something similar or the same in their own property.  The stories highlight the needs of leaders to hold themselves to higher standards or at least to the same standards as they demand of others.  In the context of things one must do to remember the destruction, the gemara discusses the concept of moderation and the concept of not demanding something of the people that they will not be able to keep.

Mar 222017

What types of things that either jut out into your neighbor’s property or affect your neighbor (like a window) can you create a chazaka on if they haven’t complained?  It depends on whether or not it’s something we would expect the neighbor to complain about.  If it is unlikely they will complain, then their lack of complaint doesn’t enable you to create a chazaka.  In each case, what does it mean to create a chazaka?  What types of things do they not even have the right to complain about?

Mar 212017

Rabbi Bena’a is demarcating graves and needs to go inside the burial caves to measure them.  A story is told of what happens when he gets to Avraham’s grave and Adam’s grave.  What is his purpose for going there?  What is he allowed to see and what is he not allowed to see?  Another story is told of an amgosh (seemingly a sorcerer) who goes into the graves of others to take things.  Other stories of Rabbi Bena’a are brought as well, including one where he gets put in jail by the non-Jewish authorities and then released because of his great intelligence and made to be a judge.  As judge he critiques and corrects a number of statements they have hung up at the entrance to their city.  The next mishna discusses various things that may or may not create a chazaka depending on various factors including size – a gutter, the spout of the gutter, a ladder, windows.

Mar 202017

In what type of a case can brothers be involved together in testimony that would be allowed and in what type of case would it not?  The mishna lists types of acts that can create a chazaka of possession in another’s field and in which not.  There are a few different explanations given to the specific case discussed in the mishna.  Rabbi Yochanan and Rabbi Bena’a make certian recommendations regarding appropriate behavior including: not looking at women when they launder their clothes, how men should dress, how to set the table in a way that will be neat and minimize mess, on which side of the table the ring should jut out so it doesn’t harm others or cause children to play with it and what should one store under one’s bed look (only slippers so it shouldn’t be cluttered).

Mar 192017

If there is a border or a sea quill plant in the middle of a field, it separates the field regarding certain halachot but not others.  One case it works for is acquiring land that belonged to a convert who died (hefker).  One opinion is that is is not considered a separation for carrying on Shabbat and Rava says that it is.  The exact details about what this means are described in the gemara.  If there is no border, how much of the field goes to the one who acquired it?  The gemara then discusses that the sea quill was used by Yehoshua to demarcate borders between the tribes when he conquered Israel.  From there the gemara mentions another issue relating to Yehoshua and then one relating to the borders of Israel that Moshe was shown by God right before he died which are the ones that are obligated in tithes.  The ones excluded from this are the lands that belonged to other neighbors (not from the 7 nations) – the Kini, Knizi and Kadmoni.  There is a 3 way argument about what geographic areas this is referring to.   The next mishna and gemara discuss issues regarding testimony about the 3 year chazaka.  Can 3 groups of witnesses testify each about a separate year?  Is this considered a whole unit of testimony (which is acceptable) or a part of a testimony (which is not acceptable)?  What if 2 witnesses testified about all 3 years but disagreed about which type of produce the person benefitted from?  Would their testimony be accepted?