Vol 32.09 - Shemini 2                                                                            Spanish French Audio  Video

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Rashi (11:8) "and you shall not touch their carcasses" The necessity according to the simple understanding of the verse that the warning is specifically during the festival. The opinion of Rashi that a persion is obligated to purify himself for the festival even in the Diaspora and not during the existence of the Temple. The necessity for this according to the simple understanding of the verse, and many innovations in halacha regarding the obligation to purify oneself on the festival according to Pshat.
"and you shall not touch their carcasses": One might think that Israelites are prohibited to touch a carcass. Scripture, however, says, “Say to the kohanim …(a kohen) shall not defile himself for a (dead) person among his people” (Lev. 21:1); thus, kohanim are prohibited from defiling themselves by human corpses, but ordinary Israelites are not prohibited. Now a kal vachomer can be made: Since in the more stringent case of defilement by a human corpse, only kohanim are prohibited, then in the more lenient case of defilement by animal carcasses, how much more so should only kohanim be prohibited! If so, what does Scripture mean by, “you shall not touch their carcasses”? It means that Israelites may not touch animal carcasses on the Festivals since at those times they deal with holy sacrifices and enter the Temple. This is what the Sages said: "A person is obligated to cleanse himself on Festivals." (R.H. 16b, Torath Kohanim 11:74)




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