Torah Sparks

United Synagogue (USCJ) is proud and delighted to bring you Torah Sparks, with insights and learning materials on the Parasha (Torah portion) of the week. Torah Sparks is produced by the Conservative Yeshiva in Jerusalem.

Each week there will be a Dvar Torah - a discussion on some aspect of the reading, by CY faculty, alumni and friends; a Vort - a short thought from Chasidic rebbes or other thinkers about some point in the text; and Table Talk - questions to stimulate discussion on the Parsha around the Shabbat table. Torah Sparks is available here on the Conservative Yeshiva's Shiurim Online Beit Midrash website, as well as by subscription to weekly graphical emails. Please select the Parasha you would like to see - it will display articles from each year. A printable PDF is linked at the end of each week's presentation.

Sukkah

Sukkah 11-20

Sukkah 11 Sukkah 12 Sukkah 13 Sukkah 14 Sukkah 15 Sukkah 16 Sukkah 17 Sukkah 18 Sukkah 19 Sukkah 20

Sukkah 2-10

Sukkah 2 Sukkah 3 Sukkah 4 Sukkah 5 Sukkah 6 Sukkah 7 Sukkah 8 Sukkah 9 Sukkah 10

Sukkah 21-30

Sukkah 21 Sukkah 22 Sukkah 23 Sukkah 24 Sukkah 25 Sukkah 26 Sukkah 27 Sukkah 28 Sukkah 29 Sukkah 30

Sukkah 31-40

Sukkah 31 Sukkah 32 Sukkah 33 Sukkah 34 Sukkah 35 Sukkah 36 Sukkah 37 Sukkah 38 Sukkah 39 Sukkah 40

Sukkah 41-50

Sukkah 41 Sukkah 42 Sukkah 43 Sukkah 44 Sukkah 45 Sukkah 46 Sukkah 47 Sukkah 48 Sukkah 49 Sukkah 50

Sukkah 51-56

Sukkah 51 Sukkah 52 Sukkah 53 Sukkah 54 Sukkah 55 Sukkah 56

Sukkah, Daf Bet, Part 1

Sukkah Daf Bet Part 1 with Hebrew text (pdf) Mishnah A sukkah which is more than twenty cubits high is not valid. Rabbi Judah validates it. One which is not ten handbreadths high, or which does not have three walls, or which has more sun than shade, is not valid. The first opinion in the […]

Sukkah, Daf Bet, Part 2

Sukkah 2, part 2 with Hebrew Text Introduction In today’s piece of Talmud we will see three different amoraim providing biblical sources for the 20 cubit height limit to the sukkah.

Sukkah, Daf Bet, Part 3

Sukkah Daf Bet (2), Section Three Introduction In yesterday’s section we saw three different amoraic opinions as to why a 20 cubit sukkah is invalid. All three amoraim cited biblical verses to support their opinion. Today’s section asks why each amora didn’t simply accept the verse cited by the other amoraim. In other words, why […]

Sukkah, Daf Bet, Part 4

Sukkah Bet (2), part 4 – Sukkah 2, part 4 with Hebrew text Introduction At the core of today’s section are three amoraic opinions that limit the mishnah’s invalidation of the 20 cubit sukkah. These amoraim mostly claim that only a narrow 20 cubit sukkah is invalid. A broader sukhah is valid no matter how […]

Sukkah, Daf Bet, Part 5

Sukkah Bet (2), part 5 – Sukkah 2, part 5 – with Hebrew text   Today’s section compares the three amoraic opinions we learned yesterday, each of which limited the mishnah’s scope in a slightly different way.

Sukkah, Daf Bet, Part 6

Sukkah Bet (2), part 6 – Sukkah 2, part 6 – with Hebrew text  They objected:  A Sukkah which is higher than twenty cubits is not valid, but R. Judah declared it valid up to a height of forty or fifty cubits.

Sukkah, Daf Daled, Part 1

Sukkah, Daf Daled, Part One   Introduction Today’s daf begins by discussing ways in which one could or could not reduce the height a sukkah that is already more than 20 cubits high by adding material to the base of the sukkah. The general principle here is that such a reduction in height is effective […]

Sukkah, Daf Daled, Part 2

Sukkah, Daf Daled, Part 2 Introduction Today’s section continues to deal with reducing the height of a 20 cubit high sukkah. היתה גבוהה מעשרים אמה, והוצין יורדין בתוך עשרים אמה, אם צלתם מרובה מחמתם כשרה ואם לאו פסולה. [If a sukkah] was more than twenty cubits high but palm-leaves hung down within the twenty cubits, if the shade is […]

Sukkah, Daf Daled, Part 3

Sukkah, Daf Daled, Part 3 Sukkah 4, part 3 PDF with Hebrew Text (Past Two Days) Sukkah 4, part 2 Sukkah 4, part 1   Today’s section continues with the case of a person building a platform inside a sukkah to reduce the size of the sukkah that is over 20 cubits high.   היתה […]

Sukkah, Daf Daled, Part 4

Sukkah, Daf Daled, Part 4 Sukkah 4, Part 4 PDF with Hebrew Text   Introduction Today’s section continues to discuss possible remedies to sukkot that are either too high or too low.   היתה פחותה מעשרה טפחים, וחקק בה כדי להשלימה לעשרה, אם יש משפת חקק ולכותל שלשה טפחים – פסולה, פחות משלשה טפחים – כשרה.   If [a sukkah] was less […]

Sukkah, Daf Daled, Part 5

Sukkah, Daf Daled, Part 5 Sukkah 4, Part 5 PDF with Hebrew Text   Introduction Today’s section deals with a person who puts up four poles and then skhakh on top. He puts up no walls. Can we pretend that there are walls?   תנו רבנן: נעץ ארבעה קונדיסין וסיכך על גבן, רבי יעקב מכשיר וחכמים פוסלין. […]

Sukkah, Daf Daled, Part 6

Sukkah, Daf Daled, Part 6 Sukkah 4, Part 6 PDF with Hebrew Text   Introduction This is a direct continuation of yesterday’s section which dealt with erecting four poles and putting skhakh on top of them without building walls.   מיתיבי: נעץ ארבעה קונדיסין בארץ וסיכך על גבן, רבי יעקב מכשיר וחכמים פוסלין.   An objection was […]

Sukkah, Daf Gimel, Part 1

Sukkah, Gimmel, Part 1 Sukkah 3, part 1 with Hebrew text   Introduction This week’s daf begins with an amora issuing a halakhic ruling with regard to the minimum breadth and width of a sukkah. אמר רב שמואל בר יצחק: הלכה, צריכה שתהא מחזקת ראשו ורובו ושולחנו. אמר ליה רבי אבא: כמאן – כבית שמאי? […]

Sukkah, Daf Gimel, Part 2

Sukkah, Gimmel, Part 2 Sukkah Gimmel, Part 2 PDF with Hebrew text   Sukkah, Gimmel, Part 2 Introduction Yesterday we learned that according to R. Shmuel b. Yitzchak, Bet Shammai and Bet Hillel disagree about the minimum size of a sukkah. R. Shmuel rules like Bet Shammai, that the sukkah must be at least large […]

Sukkah, Daf Gimel, Part 3

Sukkah, Daf Gimmel, Part 3 Sukkah Gimmel, Part 3 PDF with Hebrew text   Sukkah, Daf Gimmel, Part 3 Introduction Today’s section is a response to R. Nahman b. Yitzchak from yesterday. R. Nahman claimed that Bet Shammai and Bet Hillel argue about where one sits in the sukkah, not the minimum size of a […]

Sukkah, Daf Gimel, Part 4

Sukkah, Daf Gimmel, Part 4 Sukkah 3, Part 4 PDF with Hebrew text   Important Note: You are receiving three e-mails from Daf Shevui today. Part 4 is the reading for today (Wednesday), Part 5 is the reading for Shmini Atzeret (Thursday), and Part 6 is the reading for Simchat Torah (Friday).  Check you e-mail on […]

Sukkah, Daf Gimel, Part 5

Sukkah, Daf Gimmel, Part 5 Sukkah 3, Part 5 PDF with Hebrew text   Introduction Today’s Talmud analyzes the reasons for the baraita which exempted a house smaller than four cubits squared from a series of halakhot. We learned this baraita yesterday.   אמר מר: פטור מן המזוזה ומן המעקה ואין מטמא בנגעים ואינו נחלט בבתי […]

Sukkah, Daf Gimel, Part 6

Sukkah, Daf Gimmel, Part 6 Sukkah 3, Part 6 PDF with Hebrew text   Introduction Today’s section concludes the analysis of the baraita which listed halakhot that don’t apply to a house smaller than 4 x 4 cubits.   ואין עושין אותו עיבור בין שתי עיירות – דאפילו כבורגנין לא משוינן ליה. מאי טעמא? בורגנין […]

Sukkah, Daf Heh, Part 1

Sukkah, Daf Heh, Part One Sukkah 5, Part 1 PDF   Introduction This week’s daf begins by explaining the derivation for the minimum height of a sukkah—ten handbreadths.   ושאינה גבוהה עשרה טפחים. מנלן? אתמר, רב ורבי חנינא ורבי יוחנן ורב חביבא מתנו. בכולה סדר מועד, כל כי האי זוגא חלופי רבי יוחנן ומעיילי רבי […]

Sukkah, Daf Heh, Part 2

Sukkah, Daf Heh, Part Two Sukkah 5, Part 2 PDF   Introduction In the previous section the Talmud stated that the ark was nine handbreadths high and that the ark covering was one handbreadth high, bringing the total to 10, the minimum height of the sukkah. In today’s section the Talmud tries to show how […]

Sukkah, Daf Heh, Part 3

Sukkah, Daf Heh, Part 3 Sukkah 5, Part 3 PDF with Hebrew Text   Introduction Today’s section continues to attempt to learn the size of the ark-cover from other vessels that existed in the Temple.   ונילף מזר, דאמר מר: זר משהו!   Why then should we not deduce from the crown, of which a master stated: The […]

Sukkah, Daf Heh, Part 4

Sukkah, Daf Heh, Part 4 Sukkah 5, part 4 PDF   Introduction The Talmud continues to find various places in the Bible from which we can derive the height of the ark-cover.   רב הונא אמר מהכא. +ויקרא טז+ על פני הכפרת קדמה – ואין פנים פחות מטפח. R. Huna said: [The height of the ark-cover may be […]

Sukkah, Daf Heh, Part 5

Sukkah, Daf Heh, Part 5 Sukkah 5, Part 5 PDF   Introduction Yesterday we concluded by learning that the face of the cherub is like that of the face of a person. Today’s passage begins by questioning that assumption.   אמר ליה אביי: אלא מעתה דכתיב +יחזקאל י+ פני האחד פני הכרוב ופני השני פני אדם היינו כרוב […]

Sukkah, Daf Heh, Part 6

Sukkah, Daf Heh, Part 6 Sukkah 5, Part 6 PDF   Introduction Earlier on this page we learned that the ark was nine handbreadths high, based on the fact that the Torah said it was to be 1 and 1/2 cubits. This works under the assumption that a cubit is 6 handbreadths. But there was […]

Sukkah, Daf Het, Part 1

Sukkah, Daf Het, Part One                                                                                                            Sukkah 8, part 1 PDF Introduction Today’s section is about the validity of a round sukkah. Just a warning—there is a lot of math in this section and in the subsequent sections as well. Good luck!         אמר רבי יוחנן: סוכה העשויה ככבשן, אם יש בהקיפה כדי לישב בה […]

Sukkah, Daf Het, Part 2

Sukkah, Daf Het, Part 2 Sukkah 8, part 2 PDF Introduction Today’s section continues to deal with the size of the round sukkah. Yesterday we concluded that the perimeter of the square needed to be greater than a circle. But today we see that it still won’t get us from a circumference of 12 to […]

Sukkah, Daf Het, Part 3

Sukkah, Daf Het, Part 3 Sukkah 8, part 3 PDF Introduction More math! We continue to try to figure out how R. Yohanan came up with the number 24 for the required circumference of the round sukkah. Yesterday’s section ended with the conclusion that the sukkah really only needed to have a circumference of 16.8 […]

Sukkah, Daf Het, Part 4

Sukkah, Daf Het, Part 4                                                                                                      […]

Sukkah, Daf Het, Part 5

Sukkah, Daf Het, Section Five Sukkah 8, Part 5 PDF Introduction The baraita cited above ended with the words, “any sukkah whatsoever”—is valid. Obviously this doesn’t mean any sukkah is valid. There are some types of sukkot that are invalid. So the Talmud asks—what other types of sukkot are valid that weren’t mentioned in the […]

Sukkah, Daf Het, Part 6

Sukkah, Daf Het, Part 6 Sukkah 8, Part 6 PDF Introduction This section continues to discuss the previous two baraitot that basically allowed any sukkah to be used as long as it was constructed for shade. מכל מקום לאתויי מאי? לאתויי סוכת גנב”ך. – What does ‘any sukkah whatsoever’ include? It includes the sukkot [whose […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Aleph, Part 1

Today’s daf is dedicated by Thadea Klein. Sukkah, Daf Kaf Aleph, Part 1  Sukkah 21, part 1 Introduction Today’s section begins with a mishnah from Ohalot 3:7 that deals with the definition of a tent with regard to the issue of “overshadowing.” Overshadowing means that if a dead body or piece thereof is found in […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Aleph, Part 2

Today’s daf shevui was dedicated by Dr. Jerome Kopelman, in memory of Joseph Kopelman. Sukkah, Daf Kaf Aleph, Part 2 Sukkah 21, part 2   Introduction In yesterday’s section we encountered a mishnah in which R. Judah says that any “tent” not made by a person doesn’t count as a tent. Today’s section asks whether […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Aleph, Part 3

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Aleph, Part 3  Today’s daf shevui is sponsored by Lawrence J. Moss. Sukkah 21, part 3 Introduction In yesterday’s section we learned that R. Judah seems to hold that as long as the tent was made by a human it functions as a tent. We now return to our mishnah in Sukkah […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Aleph, Part 4

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Aleph, Part 4 Today’s Daf Shevui has been dedicated by Michael S. Novey  Sukkah 21, part 4 Introduction Today’s section offers a different reason for why R. Judah allows one to sleep under a bed in the sukkah.   ואי בעית אימא: רבי יהודה לטעמיה, דאמר: סוכה דירת קבע בעינן, והוה ליה […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Aleph, Part 5

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Aleph, Part 5 Sukkah 21, part 5  Today’s Daf Shevui is dedicated by Jeffrey M. Marker. Introduction This section relates to R. Shimon’s statement in the mishnah back at the end of Daf Kaf. אמר רבי שמעון מעשה בטבי עבדו. תניא, אמר רבי שמעון: משיחתו של רבן גמליאל למדנו שני דברים; למדנו […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Aleph, Part 6

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Aleph, Part 6  Sukkah 21, part 6 Introduction This section begins to deal with a new mishnah.   משנה. הסומך סוכתו בכרעי המטה – כשרה. רבי יהודה אומר: אם אינה יכולה לעמוד בפני עצמה – פסולה.   Mishnah: One who supports his sukkah with the posts of a bed, it is valid. […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Bet, Part 1

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Bet, Part 1 Today’s Daf Shevui is sponsored by Rabbi S.J. Yoskowitz.  Sukkah 22, part 1 Introduction This daf begins with a new mishnah. משנה. סוכה המדובללת, ושצילתה מרובה מחמתה – כשרה. המעובה כמין בית, אף על פי שאין הכוכבים נראין מתוכה – כשרה.   Mishnah. A disarranged sukkah and one whose […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Bet, Part 2

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Bet, Part 2  Today’s Daf Shevui is sponsored by Rabbi S.J. Yoskowitz. Sukkah 22, part 2 Introduction In today’s section Abaye and Rava debate the applicability of Shmuel’s interpretation of the mishnah—a disarranged sukkah, whose reeds are at different heights is still valid. אמר אביי: לא שנו אלא שאין בין זה לזה […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Bet, Part 3

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Bet, Part 3 Today’s Daf Shevui is sponsored by Rabbi S.J. Yoskowitz. Sukkah 22, part 3 Introduction In yesterday’s section Rava said that if the upper reeds of the skhakh are at least a handbreadth they can be fictitiously considered to be lower and join with the lower reeds to form valid […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Bet, Part 4

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Bet, Part 4  Today’s Daf Shevui is sponsored by Rabbi S. J. Yoskowitz. Sukkah 22, part 4 Introduction This section continues to deal with the concept of “beat it and throw it down” which allows us to consider the upper reeds of the skhakh as if they were next to the lower […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Bet, Part 5

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Bet, Part 5 Today’s Daf Shevui is sponsored by Rabbi S.J. Yoskowitz.  Sukkah 22, part 5 Introduction This section deals with the next clause of the mishnah, which states that if the shade is more than the sun inside the sukkah, the sukkah is valid. ושצילתה מרובה מחמתה כשרה. הא כי הדדי […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Bet, Part 6

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Bet, Part 6  Today’s Daf Shevui is sponsored by Rabbi S.J. Yoskowitz. Sukkah 22, part 6 Introduction The first part of today’s section contains a baraita related to the last part of the Mishnah. The second part is another mishnah, which will be commented upon and explained on subsequent pages.   מעובה […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Daled, Part 1

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Daled, Part One  Sukkah 24, Part 1 Introduction Today’s daf continues with the sugya from the previous daf. R. Judah had said that one could use an animal as the wall of a sukkah because he is not concerned lest the animal die. But R. Judah doesn’t allow one to separate tithes […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Daled, Part 2

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Daled, Part 2 Sukkah 24, Part 2 Introduction Today’s section continues with the issue of using an animal to form the wall of a sukkah. בין למאן דאמר שמא תמות, בין למאן דאמר שמא תברח, מדאורייתא מחיצה מעליא היא, ורבנן הוא דגזרו בה. אלא מעתה, לרבי מאיר תטמא משום גולל? אלמה תנן: […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Daled, Part 3

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Daled, Part 3 Sukkah 24, Part 3 Introduction Today’s section deals with R. Yose the Galilean’s opinion that one cannot write a valid divorce document, a get, on something that is alive. אמר מר, משום רבי יוסי הגלילי אמרו: אף אין כותבין עליו גיטי נשים. מאי טעמא דרבי יוסי הגלילי? דתניא +דברים […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Daled, Part 4

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Daled, Part 4 Sukkah 24, Part 4 Introduction This section continues to deal with the issue of the get. To recall—the rabbis don’t read the word “sefer” as being restricted to a book. The person can write the get on any material he so choose, even an animal. While R. Yose the […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Daled, Part 5

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Daled, Part 5 Sukkah 24, Part 5 Introduction Today’s section begins with a new mishnah. משנה. העושה סוכתו בין האילנות והאילנות דפנות לה – כשרה.   Mishnah. If he makes his sukkah between trees, and the trees form its walls, it is valid. Whereas the previous mishnayot discussed one who supports his […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Daled, Part 6

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Daled, Part 6 Sukkah 24, Part 6 Introduction Today’s section continues to deal with the issue of whether a partition that sways to and fro counts as a partition. תא שמע: אילן המיסך על הארץ, אם אין נופו גבוה מן הארץ שלשה טפחים – מטלטלין תחתיו, אמאי? הא קא אזיל ואתי! התם […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Gimmel, Part 1

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Gimmel, Part 1 Sukkah 23, part 1 Introduction Today’s section begins to deal with the mishnah found at the end of yesterday’s daf which allowed one to build a sukkah on a ship or on a wagon. גמרא. מני מתניתין – רבי עקיבא היא. דתניא: העושה סוכתו בראש הספינה, רבן גמליאל פוסל […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Gimmel, Part 2

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Gimmel, Part 2  Sukkah 23, part 2 Today’s Daf Shevui is dedicated in memory of Eva Engel Holland. Introduction Today’s section continues to deal with the dispute between R. Gamaliel and R. Akiva about whether one can build a sukkah on a ship. Abaye limits this dispute to a situation in which […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Gimmel, Part 3

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Gimmel, Part 3 Sukkah 23, Part 3   Introduction Today’s section begins a relatively long and complex discussion about building a sukkah on the back of an animal.   או על גבי גמל כו’. מתניתין מני – רבי מאיר היא. דתניא: העושה סוכתו על גבי בהמה, רבי מאיר מכשיר ורבי יהודה פוסל. […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Gimmel, Part 4

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Gimmel, Part 4 Sukkah 23, Part 4 Introduction In yesterday’s section R. Meir stated that something that has “the breath of life” in it cannot be used for certain halakhic uses (see yesterday’s section) including as a wall for a sukkah. In today’s section we begin to explore R. Meir’s reasoning. Today’s […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Gimmel, Part 5

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Gimmel, Part 5  Sukkah 23, Part 5 Introduction In the previous parts of this daf we learned that R. Meir forbids one from using something that is alive as the wall of a sukkah (and from other uses as well). Abaye said that R. Meir is concerned lest the animal die, whereas […]

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Gimmel, Part 6

Sukkah, Daf Kaf Gimmel, Part 6 Sukkah 23, Part 6 Introduction Yesterday’s section ended with a difficulty. Earlier in the daf Abaye had said that R. Meir was concerned lest the animal died. But in solving two mishnayot he said that R. Meir was not concerned lest the person die. Today’s section resolves the difficulty […]

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