Wednesday, 31 July 2013

pesachim 41

fully roasted by flames that lick the skin of the lamb
or face the lash on your own skin

(no. of lashes as punishment for not eating the pesach lamb fully roasted. connecting the shape of the flame to lash)

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

pesachim 40

watching and guarding what happens when water meets wheat, from stalk to a crack in a single grain.

Monday, 29 July 2013

pesachim 39

Maror - bitter vegetables (NOT herbs) - like matza made with things grown from ground not tree, & not one particular thing

ideally should be lettuce, has a bitter after-taste
like Egypt

Sunday, 28 July 2013

pesachim 38

Matzah is lechem oni with an aleph or an ayin - pauper or mourner - eaten grief or poverty?

pesachim 37

even women and expert bakers can't knead and form figures before they start to rise up.

Friday, 26 July 2013

pesachim 36

when matza is described as lechem oni - what is meant by calling it pauper's bread? can it be made with food one eats in times of happiness?

rather matza should be made with food that is appropriate for a mourner in deepest grief would eat.

if they can eat anything when they are cracking apart....

(this is dedicated to D & M. dear friends who, while the rest of the world was going a little silly over a baby born to a happy royal couple in London, were mourning the loss of their baby... 
the food that cracks and crumbles goes to the couple in deepest grief... hope you guys find nourishment to sustain you. shabbat shalom x)

Thursday, 25 July 2013

pesachim 35

the hierarchy of who can eat what type of matza - lechem oni - the pauper's bread.

no wonder that matza cracks.

(this page opens with the mishna that lists what  types of grain can matzah be made from. and what status grain - eg tithed, the portion given to the priests, Levities etc)

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

pesachim 34

the bird that fell into the gap due to a lapse of concentration.
left to rot - too pure to eat, not pure enough to bring close

(in the discussion about uses for impure terumah food, there is an argument between Reish Lakish and R. Yohanan if impurity is intrinsic or extrinsic. relevant to this is the case of a bird that due to lapse in concentration it is no longer suitable to sacrifice even though it is pure. The priest would throw the bird in the gap between the altar and the ramp to rot overnight before burning. so it can be intrinsically invalid. poor bird. not one thing or the other. fallen in the gap in-between definitions so left to rot.)

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

pesachim 33

is the liquid of a grape still part of the grape?

(when discussing the purity status of grape and grape juice, it is debated what the status is of the liquid that is pressed out of the fruit)

Monday, 22 July 2013

pesachim 32

throwing an axe and cutting the difference between different foolish eating of holy things

(debating the consequences of eating terumah if you are not a priest. if eaten by mistake over an olive size, pay the priest the amount plus a fifth. if intentional then no payment as punished by karet, a spiritual cutting off of the people. in the discussion R. Hiyya bar Avin accuses Rabba and Rav Sheshet of throwing an axe at his answer... the talmudic equivalent of throwing a spanner in the works)

Sunday, 21 July 2013

pesachim 31

if the chametz can't be found because it is buried deep under rocks, or left as collatoral in a gentile creditor's house, it is as if it doesn't exist.

Saturday, 20 July 2013

pesachim 30

 what to do with earthenware pots and ovens?

it's better to not destroy the pots that have absorbed chametz than make people vulnerable to merchants who take advantage and overcharge.

using halacha to stop extortion by jewish businesses and shops.

Friday, 19 July 2013

pesachim 29

if it can't be seen with the eye
or tasted in the mouth
is it really there?

(one in sixty. discussing mixing chametz with non-chametz and if this mixture is permitted after pesach, follows the discussion about benefitting from something which is forbidden to eat.)

Thursday, 18 July 2013

pesachim 28

destruction by throwing into water
throwing away idols
and chametz

to crumble or grind. or just let the water take it away.

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

pesachim 27

what to do with the bread
that was baked by the coals
that was made from the wood
that came from the tree
that THEY worshipped

(when discussing items that one cannot derive any benefit from, it is debated how far the taint of involvement with idolatry carries)

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

pesachim 26

the sights and smells of what happens within, stays within

and the ones who enter to work don't see a thing

and the ones who enter to perform, must bury their costume.

(deriving benefit from inside the Holy of Holies in the Temple. and the items used in the procedures)

Monday, 15 July 2013

pesachim 25

the girl who was healed and protected by olives that were too young to eat

and the girl who had no protection

(continuing the discussion of deriving benefit from things one is not allowed to eat, story of healing daughter using olives which are from a tree less than 3 years old - orlah - and prohibited to eat. and when comparing idolatry, illicit sexual relationships and murder, the case of a raped betrothed girl is discussed)

pesachim 24

burning as the only method of destroying that which is prohibited to eat?


increasingly larger numbers of lashes one receives as a consequence of eating the little things - the water snail that lives under the sea (4) the ant that creeps on the ground (5) and the hornet that flies in the air (6)

Saturday, 13 July 2013

pesachim 23

the nazir and the dogs who benefit from what is not allowed to be eaten.

(discussing if the prohibition to eat includes a prohibition to derive any benefit. discussed is throwing an animal corpse to the dogs, and using wine to make an eruv for a nazir, even though they are prohibited to drink wine)

Friday, 12 July 2013

pesachim 22

what to do with the things that come from something that isn't correct

getting benefit from prohibited items
& being rewarded for mistaken interpretations

Thursday, 11 July 2013

pesachim 21

can't eat chametz, can't feed it to animals or birds.

Bi'ar Chametz - destroying/removing chametz can only be done by burning, says R. Yehudah
but others say it can be just thrown away, 
into the wind 
or crumbled into the sea.

the fish and birds probably don't have a problem with that....

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

pesachim 20

the creeping (dead) bug
that touched the pot
that touched the food
that touched the liquid

(that might or might include blood)

but if uncertain if object is impure. just ask it! they are the only ones who would really know what happened to it

(a chain of impurity contagion is discussed. liquid needs to be present in order for the impurity to flow form one object to the next. and a repeat of the discussion if blood from a pure animal that is collected and used in the sacrificial procedure counts as a liquid that makes something impure. but the page begins with a statement that if the purity status of an object is uncertain and was due to human hand, then ask the object...)

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

pesachim 19

a lost needle in a cow draws a pure thread between hands to knives to spit in jerusalem.

Monday, 8 July 2013

pesachim 18

holy cow! turning black to white and white to black. liquids in vessels of all shapes and sizes

anything already pure in contact with the purification waters (water that has the ashes of a red cow mixed in) becomes unpure...

so a cow that has drunk these waters, the waters made with the ashes of a cow, at what point after entering the cow does the purification water become something disgusting.....

(personally I find the whole system of purity/impurity tahara and tamei, and the levels of contagion, quite baffling. not least because a lot of these discussions seem to be taking place after the destruction of the Temple, where the categories of tamei and tahara were relevant. But this case, discussing the status of the water once inside the cow and whether or not contact is defined as just external or also internal contact, seems to highlight the pursuit of the limits of halachic (jewish legal) definitions, even to the absurd and surreal)

Sunday, 7 July 2013

pesachim 17

making distinction between liquids of the slaughterhouse (blood and water)
and liquids of the altar (blood, water, wine and oil)

in the vessel or in the ground.

(these last couple of posts have come from brighton, where I am at a conference about medicine and comics. so it has been oddly fitting to been learning and drawing about blood. lots of blood being splashed about)

Saturday, 6 July 2013

pesachim 16

is blood a liquid?

in the discussion of the impurity of liquids - is blood included or is it its own special case.

Thursday, 4 July 2013

pesachim 14

remembering what happened in the days of the priests, piecing together the stories.

what was burnt with what. and metal was like a dead body.

(various statements about what used to happen "in the days of the priests" ie the temple. so this is a post-destruction of the temple reconstructing what they used to do. under discussion was the burning of different levels of impure things together in the general context of burning chametz on the eve of Pesach - can pure food, uneaten terumah which is chametz, be burnt with impure chametz? part of the discussion is about lamps where the statement is made that metal, in contact with a corpse, is then considered like corpse in it's status of impurity)

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

pesachim 13

did birds fly over the temple?

leaving bread out as a signal one is still allowed to eat is probably a good system. until the birds start getting peckish...

cows are probably more reliable. and moving cows on a mountain is probably easier to see from a distance than 2 loaves of bread.

(this page discusses the system where the time period for still being able to eat chametz on erev pesach was shown by 2 loaves of bread on the colonnade <that probably looked nothing like this> the time for no longer eating but not destroying was 1 loaf of bread, and the time for burning chametz was when both were removed. I do wonder what size the loaves must have been to be a signal to all the people, but there seems to be another problem. a few pages ago we learnt that one does not need to search for chametz in courtyards as the birds take away the crumbs.... there is an alternative method of signalling the times using cows ploughing on Mount of Olives, 2 for eating chametz, 1 for waiting, and no cows for time for burning the chametz.)

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

pesachim 12

who you are determines when you will have breakfast.

but everyone knows when day becomes night

Monday, 1 July 2013

pesachim 11

sometimes two things will never be joined together
a snapped rope


two people's memory and sense of time