The person who sent me the Kisvei Maharatz Chiyus is probably going to be disappointed that I haven’t said a word about some of the major topics he addresses regarding the composition of torah sheba’al peh, but I’m enjoying the other stuff so much I haven’t had a chance to get into those parts yet. One other piece before Yom Tov (footnoite p.602 if you want to see it):
A person who mistakingly carries out his lulav on Shabbos is to’eh b’dvar mitzvah (his mistake is due to trying to fulfill a mitzvah) and is therefore patur from a korban chatas. The gemara (42) wonders how the person could carry the lulav without already having fulfilled the mitzvah – once the lulav is picked up the mitzvah is over! The gemara presents a number of scenarios to resolve this question, e.g. he picked it up upside down. Tosfos asks: why does the gemara avoid offering the simple scenario of a person who picks up the lulav without kavanah to fulfill the mitzvah?
The Mahartz Chiyus takes us on a journey through a Sha’agas Arye to resolve this question. The gemara (Nazir 23) comments that two people can eat the same korban Pesach and one will be categorized as a tzadik and one a rasha – tzadikim yeilchu bam u’poshim yikashlu bam on the same act. How? The tzadik eats l’shem mitzvah; the rasha eats achila gasa, an overindulgence. Reish Lakish objected: true, achila gasa is not ideal, but does that make the person a rasha?!
Asks the Sha’agas Arye – Reish Lakish (Pesachim 113) holds that mitzvos tzerichos kavana. If so, l’shitaso indeed the person is a rasha! Eating with intent to stuff one’s face without kavanah to fulfill the mitzvah would be a bitul mitzvah. Why does Reish Lakish not accept the gemara’s statement at face value?
For easy reading (and easy writing) let me break here and part II later…