Sign up for VBM Courses today
Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Teacher Title Abstract Course
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #01: Introduction to the Series Our aim in these shiurim is to study various aggadot, mainly from the Babylonian Talmud. Our study will be based on analysis of the literary design of each aggada, with the goal of grasping its message and meanings. Similarly, we will examine the broad context of Aggada in the Talmud, and we will attempt to determine what each aggada adds to the general context of the debate within which or next to which it appears, and what, in turn, that context adds to the reading of that aggada. We will also consider the analogues and variants of each aggada in the Babylonian Talmud that appear elsewhere in the literature of Chazal, in order to dissect the different contexts in which the aggada is integrated. In this first shiur, we will begin to apply these methods to an aggada at the beginning of tractate Chagiga. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #02: Introductory Aggadot of Tractate Chagiga, Part II Our exploration of the introductory aggadot of Chagiga continues, as we delve into the connection between the narrative elements and the halakhic debates concerning the exemption of the blind and deaf from the mitzva of pilgrimage. What do seeing and hearing truly mean in the worldview of the sages? Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #03: Introductory Aggadot of Tractate Chagiga III In the first sugya in Tractate Chagiga, there is an interesting and significant connection between halakhic and aggadic material. The halakhic debate concerns pilgrimage of the festivals, which by the times of the gemara was a purely theoretical exercise, in the absence of the Temple. Adding the aggadic sections of the sugya reflects the Talmud’s intent to enhance the halakhic debate with additional content, one of great existential power for those living their lives in exile with no possibility of accomplishing a physical encounter, as it were, with the Divine Presence by fulfilling the mitzva of appearing in the Temple. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #04: Is it Important to Read a Narrative in Context? Different Views of One Story Does the context of a story influence how we read it? In this shiur, we will see that this question is subject to disagreement among those who study aggadot. We will analyze one particular aggada and note how its emphasis changes depending on its context. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #05: The Chasid in the Cemetery (Part I) In the previous shiur, we saw that there are many ways to read the same aggada when it appears in different contexts, even if there is no great variation in the details of the plot among the various parallels. In this shiur and the next, we will deal with another aggada, considering the same story from two divergent points of view. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #06: The Chasid in the Cemetery (Part II) In the previous shiur, we began to look at the story of the chasid in the cemetery. We saw that this story has a number of themes and messages, and we dealt with the shifting focus as the context changes. In this shiur, we will expand our view beyond the immediate context of the tale to take in the entire sugya. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #07: The Purpose and Status of Aggada in Halakhic Sugyot of the Babylonian Talmud - Inuy in Tractate Yoma (Part I) In this shiur, we will begin to examine a sugya in Tractate Yoma that consists of two parts: a halakhic section and an aggadic section. We will analyze the relationship between the two parts of the sugya, the halakhic and the aggadic, and the main halakhic topic of inuy on Yom Kippur. In addition, we will see the connections between these two sections themselves, noting the new significance that arises from the juxtaposition of these two parts. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #08: The Purpose and Status of Aggada in Halakhic Sugyot of the Babylonian Talmud: Inuy in Tractate Yoma (Part II) In the previous shiur, we studied the sugya dealing with inuy on Yom Kippur (Yoma 73b-76a). We discovered that it has two parts, a halakhic section and an aggadic section. In this shiur, we will suggest that the connection between the two sections of the sugya is far stronger than might appear at first glance, and we will also suggest a possible contribution of the aggadic section. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #09: The Story of the “Lovesick” Man Sanhedrin ch. 8 (Part I) In the previous shiurim, we examined the reading of aggada in the broader context of the Talmudic sugya in which it appears. In many cases, the significant links between aggadic and halakhic content may be found in the relationship between an aggadic passage and the passage in which the aggada appears. In this shiur, we will begin to study a story that exemplifies how an aggada may connect to a far broader context, such as an entire chapter of Talmud. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #10: The Story of the “Lovesick” Man Sanhedrin ch. 8 (Part II) The placement of the story of the lovesick man in the chapter entitled Ben Sorer U-Moreh indicates that we should read the former in the broader context of the latter. This story, which concludes the chapter, may best be read as illuminated by the main topic of the eighth chapter of Sanhedrin, the rebellious son, which casts the radical ruling of the sages, “Let him die rather than she…” in a new light. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #11: Aggadot of the Elderly Planters (Part I) Choni and the Dreamers In this shiur, we will compare and contrast two stories about Choni Ha-Ma'agel in an attempt to understand the message of each. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #12: Aggadot of the Elderly Planters (Part II) In this shiur, we will analyze stories that appear in the midrashim, and we will see that there is an importance to reading the tale in its broader context, just as we saw regarding aggadot in the Babylonian Talmud. We will see how this reading sheds light on the narrative, its plot, and its messages. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #13: The Story of Elazar Ze'ira (Part I) In this shiur, we will begin to study the story of "Young Eliezer,' focusing on its contribution to understanding the sugya that precedes it. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #14: The Story of Elazar Ze'ira (Part II) In the previous shiur, we considered the story of Elazar Ze’ira in the Babylonian Talmud , which appears in a halakhic sugya dealing with the laws of evaluating damage to an agricultural field. In this shiur, we will discuss the halakhic debate in the narrative Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #15: The Story of the Riverfront Wood (Part I) As in the previous shiurim, in this shiur we will deal with a narrative of a halakhic character. In the framework of the genre of “stories of the sages,” this example may be less familiar. However, as we will see, such tales are not merely the description of legal cases, but rather narratives that broadens the canvas to a certain extent. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #16: The Story of the Riverfront Wood (Part II) In the previous shiur, we encountered the story of the riverfront wood as it appears in the Babylonian Talmud (Bava Metzia 107a). Our main focus was upon the structure of the story and the dynamic among its various parts. In the current shiur, we will conclude the discussion of this narrative by comparing it to a number of parallels in the Babylonian Talmud, as well as by briefly analyzing the relationship between the narrative and the sugya in which it appears. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #17: Aggadot of the Early Second Temple Era (Part I) In previous shiurim, we have discussed aggadot that allude to a certain change between eras. In this shiur, we will study an aggada that relates directly to the transition from the First Temple to the Second Temple. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #18: Aggadot of the Early Second Temple Era (Part II) In this shiur, we continue our exploration of the aggada regarding the removal of the idolatrous inclination. What is the significance of the fact that the creature representing the inclination emerges from the Holy of Holies? Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #19: Aggadot of the Early Second Temple Era (Part III) In this shiur, we will deal further with the passage from Tractate Yoma of the Babylonian Talmud that we have analyzed in the previous two shiurim - the eradication of the idolatrous inclination in the early Second Temple Era - comparing it to the version that appears in the Jerusalem Talmud. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #20: The Tale of Nechunya the Ditch-Digger (Part I) In this shiur, we will begin to explore the aggada of Nechunya the ditch-digger, as presented in Tractate Bava Kama, comparing this story to the version that appears in the Jerusalem Talmud Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #21: The Tale of Nechunya the Ditch-Digger (Part II) In this shiur, we will continue to compare and contrast the narratives about Nechunya the Ditch-Digger that appear in the Babylonian and Jerusalem Talmuds, and we will discuss the lesson that the Babylonian Talmud wishes to convey through its presentation of a narrative made up of combined elements. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #22: The Tale of Nechunya the Ditch-Digger (Part III) The Postscript of the Mesakkel In this shiur, we conclude our discussion of the aggada of Nechunya the ditch-digger with an analysis of the story that closes it, which describes what happens to a man who removes stones from his property and places them in the public domain. What is the connection of this story to the sugya, and what can we learn from the differences between it and other versions of it? Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #23: The Tale of Rabba bar Avuha and Eliyahu (Part I) In this shiur, we begin our discussion of an aggada describing the interaction between Rabba bar Avahu and the Prophet Eliyahu. What is the significance of the three questions that are discussed in this passage? Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #24: The Tale of Rabba bar Avuha and Eliyahu (Part II) In the previous shiur, we discussed the encounter between Rabba bar Avuha and Eliyahu (Babylonian Talmud, Bava Metzia 114a-b). In this shiur, we will analyze the content of the narrative in light of its broader context in the sugya. In this narrative, we are exposed to an additional role of the aggadic tale in a sugya: strengthening the halakhic position of one view discussed in the halakhic sugya, even though the debate does not reach a definitive conclusion. Talmudic Aggadot (2)
Rav Dr. Yonatan Feintuch Shiur #25: Aggadot of Pesachim I: The Light and the Dark Over the course of the next few shiurim, we will discuss some of the aggadot in Tractate Pesachim, their content and their context. Beyond a literary analysis of each aggada, we will address an additional role filled by the aggadot in this tractate. Talmudic Aggadot (2)

Pages