Toharot, Chapter Four, Mishnah Nine

 

Mishnah Nine

1)      “In the case of a doubt concerning liquids as to whether they have contracted uncleanness it is deemed unclean:” 

a)      How so?

b)      If an unclean person stretched his foot between clean liquids and there is doubt whether he touched them or not, such a condition of doubt is deemed to be unclean.

c)      If a man had an unclean loaf in his hand and he stretched it out between clean liquids, and there is doubt whether it touched them or not, such a condition of doubt is deemed to be unclean.

2)      “But if it was whether uncleanness has been conveyed, it is deemed clean.”  

a)      How so?

b)      If a man had in his hand a stick on the end of which there was an unclean liquid and he threw it among clean loaves and there is doubt whether it touched them or not, such a condition of doubt is deemed clean.

 

Explanation

Section one: This section deals with cases where something might have touched an unclean liquid and it is ruled impure. Since liquids are susceptible to impurity according to toraitic law, these liquids are impure.

Section two: Liquids do not convey impurity according to toraitic law—only through rabbinic decree. Therefore, in these cases the loaf remains pure. Note that although the source of uncleanness seems to be moving, the sages say that since it is stationary on the stick, it is not moving. Were it moving it would obviously not convey impurity in cases of doubt, as we have learned previously.

 

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