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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

The Purim Song (Part 5: More Svara)

On the surface, רב נחמן's position that reading the מגילה can be in place of saying הלל, seems difficult.  After all, הלל is a song of praise, while מגילה is just the reading of a story. How can we justify this position?

It would seem that according to רב נחמן the reading of הלל can be done with a text which is explicitly הלל or with a text in which the הלל is implicit.  In general, the הלל is expressed through explicit songs of praise. However, it can equally be accomplished by reading the moving story of the מגילה, a book which is written in a manner which implicitly points to and celebrates God's Providence to protect and save the Jewish people.

Although God and His Providence are never mentioned explicitly in the מגילה, it is implicit in the mind of the reader of the מגילה who recognizes and feels a strong sense of appreciation for the great salvation brought by Hashem. 

This what רב נחמן means by saying that reading the מגילה is the הלל. Since the publicizing of the miracle had already been set up through the reading of the מגילה, and this reading carries with it an implicit הלל, there was no further need to add an additional recitation of הלל.  The reading of the מגילה suffices for both.

The other positions argue with רב נחמן and maintain that הלל must be explicit. Its essence is in the outward expression of song and praise. Thus, the obligation of הלל, if it were to exists, could not be satisfied through reading of the מגילה alone.

In the next post, we will be presenting a different way of understanding these issues based upon an understanding of the relationship between the first and second parts of the sugya.

23 comments:

  1. ג הקורא את המגילה על פה, לא יצא ידי חובתו. הלועז ששמע את המגילה הכתובה בלשון הקודש, ובכתב הקודש--אף על פי שאינו יודע מה הן אומרין, יצא ידי חובתו; וכן אם הייתה כתובה יוונית ושמעה, יצא--אף על פי שאינו מכיר, ואפילו היה השומע עברי.

    It would SEEM from this halacha that there is no idea of kiyum shebelav from the megilla, as you don't have to understand what the reader is saying...

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    1. According to your inference, wouldn't you have to also conclude that there is no idea of publicizing the miracle, as you don't have to understand what the reader is saying?

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    2. See the gemara on the bottom of megilla 18a (with Rashi) which addresses this issue explicitly.

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    3. If the 4 cups of pesach are an action of pirsumei nisa(and would therefore be a kiyum shevach ((as per your explanation of the gemara in megilla 18a-that is, there is kriah and pirsumei nisa and the kiyum halev takes place when the women hear the story(rashis explanation)...then why is there a chiyuv hallel on pesach. We only need one outlet for the kiyum halev just like purim where there is no hallel, only megilla...

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    4. The same question applies to chanukah candles...

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    5. We are not saying that pirsum creates a kiyum belev of hallel, but that megilla does this. It is because "by reading the moving story of the מגילה, a book which is written in a manner which evokes an internal appreciation of God's Providence to protect and save the Jewish people " that this kiyum belev occurs. The actions of 4 cups and candles don't necessarily do this and therefore there is an independent din of hallel.

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    6. I'm not sure if I understand the difference between 'megilla does this' and 'pirsum'... It would seem from that gemara there are two ideas(and the gemara itself needs analysis as per other questions.)

      The essence(from megilla 18a) seems to be that there is kria, and the pirsum that is evoked therein(either to ppl who do understand it in the moment of reading, or when the non-learned ppl ask the ppl who understand it afterward(rashi)-which in itself is funny because why would the non-learned ppl have to listen to a kriah ba'alma).





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    7. We don't really understand what exactly is bothering you, but perhaps the final svara we're going to present it the next post will help clarify the relationship between the pirsum and the hallel.

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  2. When one is in a congregation there is a koreh, and he reads the megilla and everyone hears the information elicited in that kriah. That is one aspect the gemara on 18a seems to be saying. The integration of that information into the mind of the koreh and the congregation is the actual publicizing of the miracle.

    If someone doesn't understand the material(am aratzim and women) then there is a kriah from the person reading the megilla, and for the ppl who understand the material there is a pirsum(they process the information and the event in their minds) and there is an emotional kiyum halev of shevach.(after they integrate the information in their minds)

    (My question is why should someone who can't process the information because they don't understand it stand at the kriah-rashi seems to be saying that--"even though they do not know what they are hearing, they ask the listeners and they tell them what this kriah is and how the miracle occured." It would SEEM from rashi that they are standing there listening to the kriah, and the ppl who understand it tell them what happened(maybe afterwards? I don't know what the metzios of rashi is.)
    (You can't do an action of publicizing an event if one doesn't understand the information being said.)

    If what I'm reading into rashi/this gemara is correct, then the actual cognition of the material in the ppl's minds is the pirsum and thus in general pirsum either through the processing of the information or through actions such as lighting candles which calls to mind the event of the chanukah miracle as well as a masseh of drinking four cups recalls in the persons mind the event of the miracle which allows for an emotional kiyum halev/shevach.

    I hope this is clearer.

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    1. We are saying that it is specifically through reading the story of the megilla, which is a complex story that subtly shows the Divine Providence, that a person is brought to a state of internally praising God. It would not be enough if a person simply knew that God performed a miracle and saved the Jewish people, but it requires the in depth analysis of the concatenation of events that is presented in the story of the megilla.

      On the other hand, both the drinking of the 4 cups and lighting candles do not convey this depth of information. Rather they convey the essential knowledge that God performed a miracle and saved the Jews, but not the details of how He did it.

      Perhaps if there was a corresponding reading of the story of Chanuka or Pesach that accompanied the publicizing of the miracles, Rav Nachman would agree that it could substitute for hallel.

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    2. You-We are saying that it is specifically through reading the story of the megilla, which is a complex story that subtly shows the Divine Providence, that a person is brought to a state of internally praising God. It would not be enough if a person simply knew that God performed a miracle and saved the Jewish people, but it requires the in depth analysis of the concatenation of events that is presented in the story of the megilla.

      Me-then if someone doesn't understand the language(and thus can not have the "in depth analysis of the concatenation of events that is presented in the story of the megilla." how can he have a kiyum shebelav.

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    3. Also-"It would not be enough if a person simply knew that God performed a miracle and saved the Jewish people, but it requires the in depth analysis of the concatenation of events that is presented in the story of the megilla."

      Why can't the recall of the event(through the physical action) of the chanukah miracle or guelas mitzraim bring about an emotional kiyum halev/shevach.

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    4. הלועז ששמע את המגילה הכתובה בלשון הקודש, ובכתב הקודש--אף על פי שאינו יודע מה הן אומרין, יצא ידי חובתו;--The rambam is funny...what's the the 'henn'-'they are saying'-whose 'they'...isn't it l'chorah one koreh?

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    5. The answer to your question is as Rashi explains. Since everyone else heard the detailed story of the megilla, they will tell over the details to the person who doesn't understand the language. This is not the case with lighting candles or drinking 4 cups of wine.

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    6. right exactly.(or at least similar to rashis metzios)

      I guess not knowing the details through an action, and mere recall of the story(which will happen through the actions) won't produce a kiyum halev. Although I don't see why not.

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    7. I say 'at least similar' because why would these ppl who don't understand the words have to stand at the krias hamegilla.

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    8. Look carefully at the gemara. We believe it answers your question. It says "mitzvas kriah u'pirsumei nisah". The technical form of the maaseh mitzvah is kriah. This cannot be avoided. But the kiyum is pirsum. The gemara's problem is how can someone who doesnt understand have this kiyum. Thus, the gemara answers that he'll hear people discussing...

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    9. I understand that.

      However it is an empty maaseh as the loazim do not understand the words/text.

      Why would halacha formulate this situation for loazim who don't understand the text.

      Also the ppl who are listening and do understand are not reading, so they don't do an action of kriah. They merely register the information of the krias hamegilla- a fulfillment of partaking of an action of publication by registering the information in their minds. They don't do an action of reading...so then why can't the pirsum take place for the loazim in a haphazard fashion where they don't listen to the kriah and they can just get the information afterward from the people who did understand it.

      (In general publication can only take place when there are 2 parties-the publicizer and the person/ppl it is being publicized to. Both are doing an action of publication by one saying the information and one processing it.)

      When the loazim hear the information afterward from the other people that is when they partake of an action of publication.(It would seem that they are not partaking of an act of publication when they are in a gathering listening to a foreign language and then get the information from the people who did understand it.)

      To me there seems to be something funny about how rashi/rambam present the case. I have an idea, but I don't want to share it, unless you see my issue in the gemara.

      This is besides the point that when someone is drinking the four cups( presumably during a time period when the story of the exodus is salient in his mind-during the deorisya time period of sippur yetzios mitzraim) that the drinking won't reinforce thinking about the event and as a result lead to a shevach halev. Why should knowledge of the particulars of the plot(krias hamegilla) lead to a shevach halev, and not reinforcing in one's minds eye the event when one is drinking the four cups.

      I hope this is clear.


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    10. Shomai'ah Ke'oneh makes it like kriah...

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    11. What about the four cups(last paragraph)?

      (Side question-why would chazal formulate a kriah for ppl who don't understand it.)

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    12. continuation of side Q-if pirsum is the kiyum...

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    13. We revised the svara and edited this post based upon yor questions. Check it out.

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  3. No one else can be who you are, experienced what you have, lived the life you have. You should say what you say in the way that you say it.buyrealplays.co

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