Shabbos 71 getting dragged along and the date-line revisited
On this daf, we are introduced to the fascinating concept of גרירה, or dragging.
This is a fairly good literal translation of the word, as we have already seen the famous view of Shmuel, who rules like Rabbi Shimon that גורר אדם מיטה כסא וספסל ובלבד שלו יתכוין לעשות חריץ – a person may drag a bed, chair, or bench on shabbos along the ground, so long as he doesn’t intend to dig a ditch ( even though there it is very likely that it will happen.)
This is the famous rule of דבר שאינו מתכון מותר – one may perform a permitted activity even though it might be accompanied by an unintended forbidden activity, so long as the resulting forbidden activity is not inevitable.
But our daf is not about דבר שאינו מתכוין, although we shall hopefully have many more opportunities to discuss this wide-ranging rule.
Today, we learn that one sin can be “dragged” by another one and atoned for together with it through the same sacrifice , even if that first sin itself was actually only atoned for with the same sacrifice of a different sin .
A person forgets that it is shabbos and does two forbidden melachos, reaping and grinding for example.
According to our most recent Mishna, as both these melachos were performed under the same ommision (forgetting it was shabbos,), one sacrifice korban atones for both.
However, in this curveball of a case, before one realizes that he broke shabbos, he remembers it is shabbos but forgets that these two melachos are forbidden on shabbos and then repeats the same 2 melachos.
Under normal circumstances, the later act would require 2 sacrifices, as per our Mishna, one for each melacha.
However, because he never really became aware of the first 2 transgressions before he performed the next 2, the two acts of reaping are tied to each other as 2 of the same melacha performed under one omission, and only require one sacrifice .
The same applies to the two acts of grinding.
As such, if one sets aside a korban as soon as one becomes aware of the earlier 2 sins, that korban covers both the initial act of reaping and the initial act of grinding.
When he then becomes aware of the later 2 sins, there is no need to bring another 2, or even 1, korban for them
- The first korban covered the first act of reaping and pulls the second act of reaping along with it. (seeing as both were done without becoming aware of the sin in between)
- As it also covered the first act of grinding, it pulls the second of grinding with it 2, for the same reason.
Thus all 4 transgressions are covered by 1 korban, instead of the 3 korbanot we would have expected.
Things then get more complex, with further extensions of the גרירה concept, and my shabbos rest just wasn’t the same today due to the complexity of this daf ( if you also found today’s daf rather taxing on the mind , you have company !)
The lomdus in this sugya is rather particular-partly based on pesukim- and hard to apply literally to other areas of halocho.
However, I was initially quite excited as it reminded me of a particularly leniency of the Chazon Ish regarding the dateline, known as HIS chiddush of גרירה.
As mentioned in a recent post, the Chazon Ish is of the opinion that the halachik dateline should be 90 degrees east of Jerusalem and everywhere to the east of that should be behind one day and keep shabbos on Sunday.
However, this poses a major problem as unlike the agreed international dateline, as well as the halachik dateline of Rav Tucazinsky זצ”ל which passes through the Pacific Ocean, this dateline passes through China and Australia, meaning that 2 people could literally stand on different sides of the line, within less than shiur Corona ( 2 metres) of each other, and it could be shabbos for one and a weekday for another .
This could even happen in the middle of the same city or theoretically, the same shul!
Due to the irrationality of such a situation, the Chazon Ish applies a tremendous chiddush and rules that if even part of a body of land( a continent ) is in the same date zone as Jerusalem, the entire body of land is “dragged” after it and follows the same date as Jerusalem.
I was hoping over shabbos to find that this logical ruling could perhaps be based on today’s daf’s precedent , but became convinced that there is absolutely no comparison in the lomdus or the application of the versus, and that the usage of this term is simply borrowed.
So I almost decided to cancel this post, but thought it would be nice to share the thought process anyway and see if anyone can either confirm my rejection of this as a possible proof or reinvigorate it ( I have not yet seen in the actual writings of the Chazon Ish on this subject any attempt to link the two but I have admittedly not been through all of it carefully .)
At the end of the day , “It is Torah, and I need to learn”, and as “One Mitzva pulls along another” (Avos 4/2) , this post will hopefully lead to some greater clarity on the various complex issues raised herein.