Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Parshas Naso: Understanding Nezirus

This week’s shiur focussed on the status of a Nazir. The gemara and Rishonim discuss the difference between a neder and a shevuah. The gemara calls a Neder an issur cheftzah and a shevuah is called an issur gavrah. This means that when making a neder not to have hana’ah from a pieceof bread, the piece of bread is a davar hassur and is assur to you. However, if one makes a shevuah not to eat a piece of bread the whole day, the bread idoesn’t become a cheftzah shel issur. Rather, you have imposed on yourself certain restrictions-namely not ot eat bread. The question is, how do we view a Nazir. Is it an issur cheftzah, in that the wine becomes a cheftzah shel issur, or is it an issur gavrah, that you are imposing on yourself certain issurim?

Issur Gavra

The Maharit (Siman 52 and 53) has a lengthy arichus on this topic. He brings several Rishonim that seem to hold that Nezirus is an issur gavra. He quotes the Ran and the Rosh as both saying that a nazitr is an issur gavra. Tosafos in Shevuos 25a `also seems to hold it is an issur gavra. The gemara learns from two different pesukim that both nedarim and nezirus is chal on a davar mitzvah. Tosafos asks why do we need two pesukim, just learn nazir from nedarim. Tosafos answers that a nazir is an issur gavra and therefore you can’t learn it from nedarim which is an issur cheftzah..

Issur Cheftza

The Minchas Aher writes that the Rashba ssays nezirus is an issur cheftzah. (also ayimn Maharshdam Y.D. 76 that holds it is an issur cheftzah). The Rashba in answering Tosafos’ question above says that if I didn’thave a posuk I might think nazir is an issur gavra. Therefoere the posuk tells me it is chal a n a devar mitzvah to show it is an issur cheftzah.

Nafka Mina

There don’t to be too many nafka mina in this chakirah, but one nafka mina discussed in the poskim is where someone is m’kabeil nezirus using a loshon neder or using a loshon shevuah. Is the nezirus chal. The Mahrit and Maharshdam write that it could depend on this chakirah. If nezirus is an issur cheftzah then using a loshon shevuah won’t help. If it is an issur gavra than using a loshon neder won’t help. you hold

Shittas Maharit

Finally, there is a third shitta introduced by the maharit. The Maharit writes that nezirus is neither an issur cheftzah or gavrah. Rather it is a status one accepts upon himself that brings with it various dinim, namely that it is assur to drink wine, become tamei or get a haircut. This is similar to a kohein who has a certain status of kedusha and consequently is assur to become tamei.

The achronim us ethis Maharit to explain several sugyas.

The lav of Bal Yeichal

The Rambam paskens that if a nazir violates his nezirus by l’mashel drinking wine , not only is he oveir the lav of drinking wine, but he is also oveir the lav of bal yeichal-which is the lav for violating a neder or shevuah. Rabbi Akiva Eiger asks (Michtavim in Derush v’Chiddush siman 5) why are you also not chayav a korbon? If one violates a neder or shevuah he is oveir on bal yeichal and chayav a korbon. Why does this not apply by Nezirus?

Rabbi Akiva Eiger answers using the yesod of the Mahrit. (He doesn’t quote the Maharit but it is the same yesod). Nezirus is not a shevuah or neder, rather you have accepted upon yourself a certain status. Violating this status is not considered violating your neder or shevuah since nezirus was never a shevuah or neder in the first place.

Of course the question is if nezirus was never a shevuah or neder, why are you oveir on bal yeichal? Rabbi Akiva Eiger says it is a gezeiras hakasuv that the torah imposes upon you this lav.

Miktzas Nezirus

The halacha is if you say “I am a nazir not to drink wine” you are a nazir for everything since “ain nezirus l’chatzain”-there is no such thing as a half nezirus. The Minchas Chinuch asks, if you become tamei, why are you oveir on bal yeichal? Bal Yeichal is an issur for violating what you said. You only mentioned nezirus on wine not on being tamei. So why is there an issur bal yeichal on being tamei? The Kehillas Ya’akov (Nazir siman 2) answers with the Maharit. Nezirus is a status and not a shevuah. In truth there should never be an issur bal yeichal-but the torah imposes it upon someone who violates his nezirus. So here too it is imposed by the Torah even though you didn’t specifically mention tumah.

Issur Kollel

If one says “I am assur to wine” and then says “I am a nazir” he is not a nazir since he is already assur to wine and ain issur chal al issur. The achronim ask why don’t we say issur kollel-that by being a nazir he is adding tumah and haircutting so the nezirus should be chal. The Shut Avnei Miluim writes in Siman 15 that we only say issur kollel when the additional issurim are imposed by the person.. But if they are imposed by the Torah we don’t say issur kollel. Acording to the Maharit that Nezirus is just accepting a status so it comes out the issurim are imposed by the Torah-once you accept this status, m’meilah you have these issurim. Since you never imposed them upon yourself we don’t say issur kollel.

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