Abaye asked [R. Dimi]: What ground is there for assuming that the purpose of the phrase 'soaked in'4 is to indicate that what is permitted and what is forbidden combine,5 for may not its purpose be to indicate that the taste is equivalent to the substance itself?6 (Is not this curious? First Abaye is perplexed by R. Dimi's statement7 and points out all the above contradictions, and then he suggests that perhaps, after all, the flavour is equivalent to the substance!8 — After [R. Dimi] had answered him,9 he went on to suggest that perhaps its purpose is to indicate that the taste is equivalent to the substance itself.)10 For it has been taught: The phrase 'soaked in' makes the taste equivalent to the substance itself, so that if [the nazirite] soaked grapes in water and this acquired the taste of wine, there would be a penalty [for drinking it].11 From this case, an inference may be drawn applicable to all prohibitions of the Torah. For seeing that in the case of the nazirite where the prohibition is not permanent,12 where he is not forbidden to derive any benefit [from wine],13 and where he may even have the prohibition removed,14 the taste was declared to be equivalent to the substance, then in the case of mixed seeds in the vineyard15 where the prohibition is permanent, where it is forbidden to derive any benefit from them, and where there is no way in which the prohibition can be removed it surely follows that the flavour is to be equivalent to the substance itself. The same argument applies to Orlah16 which has two [of these properties].17 — [R. Dimi] replied:18 The above represents the view of the Rabbis, whereas R. Abbahu, in making his statement [on behalf of R. Johanan],19 was following the opinion of R. Akiba.
To what [statement of] R. Akiba [does this refer]? Shall I say that it is the [dictum of] R. Akiba to be found here [in our Mishnah] where we learn: R. AKIBA SAID THAT THERE IS A PENALTY EVEN IF HE SOAKS HIS BREAD IN WINE AND ENOUGH [IS ABSORBED] TO COMBINE INTO AN OLIVE'S BULK;20 But whence [do you know that the olive's bulk includes the bread eaten]?21 May it not mean that the wine alone must be an olive's bulk! And should you object that the statement would then be obvious?22 [To this we may reply] that its object is to indicate dissent from the opinion of the first Tanna23 [that there is no penalty] Unless he drinks a quarter [of a log] of wine! It must therefore be the [statement of] R. Akiba to be found in the following Baraitha where it is taught: R: Akiba said that a nazirite who soaks his bread in wine and eats an olive's bulk of the bread and wine is liable [to the penalty].
R. Aha, the son of R. Iwia, asked R. Ashi: Whence will R. Akiba, who interprets the phrase 'whatever is soaked in' as implying that permitted and forbidden foods combine, derive the rule that the taste is equivalent to the substance itself?24 — He can derive it from [the prohibition of] meat and milk [seethed together],25 for there is no more than the mere taste in that case26 and yet it is forbidden, whence we may infer that the same is true here.27 The Rabbis do not allow this inference to be made from meat and milk because it is an anomalous [prohibition].28
What constitutes its anomaly? Shall I say it is the fact that each constituent is permitted separately, while the combination is forbidden? Surely also in the case of mixed [seeds]29 each constituent is permitted separately and the combination is forbidden!30 — It is, therefore, the fact that If soaked in milk all day long, [the meat] remains permitted, and yet on seething it becomes forbidden.31
Must not R. Akiba, too, agree that [the seething together of] meat and milk is an anomalous [prohibition]?32 — It must therefore be
Nazir 37bthat he derives the rule from the [necessity for] scalding the vessels of a Gentile.1 For the All-Merciful Law has said, Everything that may abide the fire [ye shall make go through the fire etc,]2 telling us that they are [otherwise] forbidden. Now the scalding of a Gentile's vessels [must be done] because the mere taste is forbidden, and so here too, the same is true.
Then why should not the Rabbis also infer this rule from the scalding of a Gentile's vessels? — [Rab Ashi] replied: There [too] the prohibition is anomalous for everywhere else in the Torah whatever imparts a worsened flavour is permitted,3 whereas in the case of the scalding of a Gentile's vessels a worsened [flavour]4 is forbidden.
Must not R. Akiba agree that this case is anomalous?5 — R. Huna b. Hiyya replied: According to R. Akiba, the Torah only forbade utensils that had been used [by a gentile] on the same day, in which case the flavour is not detrimental.6 And the Rabbis? — They considered that even with a pot that had been used on the same day it was impossible for the flavour not to be slightly detrimental. R. Aha, the son of R. Iwia, said to R. Ashi: The Rabbis' opinion should throw a certain light on the views of R. Akiba. For the Rabbis say that [the phrase] 'whatever is soaked in' has as its object to indicate that the taste is equivalent to the substance itself, and [further] that a rule may be derived from this applicable to all prohibitions of the Torah. And so, ought not R. Akiba also, who interprets this same [phrase] 'whatever is soaked in' as implying that what is permitted combines with what is forbidden, infer [further] from it a rule applicable to all prohibitions of the Torah?7 [R. Ashi] replied: [He does not do so] because the nazirite and the sin-offering8 are dealt with in two verses [of Scripture] from which the same inference9 is possible, and whenever there are two verses from which the same inference is possible no other cases may be inferred.10
The nazirite [passage] is the one just explained.11 What is [the inference from] sin-offering? It has been taught: [The verse] Whatsoever [food] shall touch the flesh thereof12 shall be holy13 might be taken to imply that [it becomes holy] even if none [of the sin-offering] is absorbed by it.14 Scripture [however] says the flesh thereof, [this indicates that it becomes sacred] only when It absorbs from its flesh;15 'it [then] shall be holy', [that is, have the same degree of sanctity] as [the sin-offering] itself.16 If the latter is ritually unfit [to be eaten]17 the other becomes unfit also, whilst if it is still permitted, the other is also permitted, only under the same conditions of stringency [as the sin-offering].18
What can the Rabbis [say to this argument]?19 — They will contend that both verses are necessary.20 For if the All-Merciful had inscribed only the verse relating to the sin-offering it would have been said that we have no right to infer from it the case of the nazirite, for we could not infer anything about the nazirite from [regulations applying to] sacrificial meats.21 Again, had the All-Merciful inscribed only the verse relating to the nazirite, It could have been argued that no rule can be derived from the nazirite, since the prohibitions in his case are very severe indeed for he is forbidden even the skin of the grape. On this ground we should have been able to infer nothing. [Thus both verses are necessary.]
What is R. Akiba's reply [to this argument]? — He will reply that both verses are certainly not necessary. Granted that had the All-Merciful inscribed only the verse relating to the sin-offering, we could not have deduced the case of the nazirite because what is profane cannot be inferred from [regulations applying] to sacrificial meats,22 yet the All-Merciful could have inscribed only the verse relating to the nazirite, and the case of the sin-offering could have been deduced from this, since [in any case] all other prohibitions of the Torah are inferred from the nazirite prohibition.23 And the Rabbis? — They [can] reply that while the [verse relating to] sin-offering [tells us] that permitted and forbidden foods combine, we cannot infer from [regulations applying to] sacrificial meats any rule concerning profane food,24 [whereas] when the phrase 'whatever is soaked in' tells us that the taste is equivalent to the substance itself, a rule is inferred from this applicable to all prohibitions of the Torah. And R. Akiba? — He considers that both verses are intended to tell us that what is permitted combines with what is forbidden, so that these are two verses from which the same inference can be made, and when two verses occur from which the same inference can be made, no other cases may be inferred.25
R. Ashi said to R. Kahana: How are we to explain the following, where it is taught: '[The verse] Nothing that is made of the grape-vine, from the pressed grapes even to the grape-stone,26 teaches that the things forbidden to a nazirite can combine together'?27 For seeing that it is possible, according to R. Akiba, for what is permitted to combine with what is forbidden, need we be told that the same is true of two species of forbidden substances? — [R. Kahana] replied: What is permitted [combines with] what is forbidden only [if they are eaten] together, whereas two species of forbidden substances combine even [if eaten] consecutively.
Now R. Simeon
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