Volume 28 Number 77
                 Produced: Tue Jun 15  7:05:38 US/Eastern 1999

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

FAXES and Eggs Born on Shabbath (2)
         [Chana Luntz, Ari Kahn]


From: Chana Luntz <Chana/<Heather@...>
Date: Mon, 14 Jun 1999 13:52:50 +0100
Subject: Re: FAXES and Eggs Born on Shabbath

In message <19990611201409.21974.qmail@...>, > Zev Sero
<zsero@...> writes
>From: Russell Hendel <rhendel@...> wrote:
>> We had a long discussion in mail jewish on why exactly eggs cannot be
>> used on Shabbath. One suggested approach is that a BORN EGG has a NEW
>> STATUS--before Shabbath it was part of the chicken, while now it has the
>> STATUS of an EGG (e.g. you can point to it and talk about eating it).
>> In a similar manner--a piece of paper that received a fax message on
>> it on shabbath has achieved a NEW STATUS--it no longer has the status
>> of being a piece of BLANK paper but rather it has the status of a FAX
>> Hence it is "BORN" and should not be read (till after Shabbath).
>An egg before it is laid is not an entity separate from its mother;
>this is the legal principle `ubar yerech imo'.  Thus, when it is laid,
>a new entity comes into existence that was not there before.  The law
>of `nolad' also applies when ice melts and water comes into existence;
>legally, ice and water are two distinct entities, rather than the same
>substance in different forms, so when ice melts and disappears, the
>water is considered to have come into existence ex nihilo.  That's why
>a mikveh can be made from melted ice.

This is the substance of the discussion as I remembered it from the
previous mail jewish.  However the daf yomi at the moment is in beitza,
and the discussion on the first few dafim there do not seem in
accordance with what is discussed here (by either Zev or Russell).

Now it may be that a) I am not understanding the daf and the surrounding
commentaries correctly (one of the problems with daf yomi is we go
through so quickly, and certainly my analysis here results from only
limited research) or b) there are other sources in Shas/poskim that have
not come up in my research that throw other light on the issue.

However my understanding of the gemorra in the first few pages of beitza
is this:

while there are a significant number of explanations given in the
gemorroa as to why we cannot eat an egg on Yom Tov (and Shabbas) that
was born that day, we pasken like Rabba, that is, it is an issur of
hachana [preparation].  Rabba brings a pasuk (yom hashishi) from which
we learn that while a day of chol can prepare for shabbas/yom tov,
shabbas or yom tov is not permitted to prepare for shabbas or yom tov.
That means, that if a day of shabbas or yom tov fell the day before the
particular shabbas/yom tov on which the egg is born, the issur of eating
the egg is d'orisa [from the Torah].  On all other shabbosim and yom
tovim, the issur is d'rabbanan [rabbinical], and is a gezera [rabbinical
fence], because people are not likely to remember that eg a yom tov that
falls after shabbas has different rules to a yom tov that falls after a
day of chol.

Rashi (3b) appears to link this position to Rabba's other position in
pesachim of yesh muktza (ie Rabba follows Rabbi Yehuda on muktza there,
and not, as we do, follow Rabbi Shimon).  However, the other rishonim
appear to reject this position and posit hachana as a separate issur
(see eg Tosphos, the Rosh there) and the achronim and poskim follow -
(see eg the Magan Avraham on Orech Chaim 513, Mishna Brura on Orech
Chaim 513 (and similarly on the shabbas equivalent 322), Aruch
Hashulchan on 513).  The explanation that is given by these is that an
egg that is born on a certain day is deemed halachically to be formed
m'etmol, from the day before. Thus the equation works, because if the
egg is formed on the day before, and the day before is shabbas or yom
tov, then the egg will have been prepared from shabbas to yom tov. (Note
that two days of yom tov in the diaspora is also discussed, as is the
two days of Rosh Hashona, but that adds more complication, so I won't
bring the discussions here).

Tosphos 3b further discuss the question that if there is a d'orisa issur
of hachana, how can we make an eruv tavshilin and prepare from yom tov
to shabbas (an eruv tavshillin is only d'rabbanan, and could not be used
to overide an issur d'orisa). They explain that what we do using an eruv
tavshillin, eg cook is only a form of tikun [preparation] and not the
creation of a d'var chadash [new thing] like the creation of an egg.
Thus tikun is alright from yom tov to shabbas (with an eruv tavshilin)
while creation of a d'var chadash is not.

Now using the above principles, i am at a loss to see how a fax is
considered nolad.

Firstly, is the production of a fax more comparable to tikun or to a new
creation?  When it comes to cooking, we often change the name and status
of the item - we take raw meat and spices and we turn it into a stew or
chullent.  Yet this is clearly tikun, not the creation of a "new thing".
Similarly it seems to me that a fax is that application of ink to paper
and is hardly a wonderous creation (in fact the whole purpose of a fax
is to reproduce in one part of the world an exact copy of what exists in

Secondly, and more critically, if the whole basis of the issur of
hachana on a regular shabbas is a rabbinical gezera to protect the
situation when shabbas falls before yom tov, or vice versa, then it
would seem completely inappropriate to apply this gezera to a fax. Why?
Because by definition, if you are sending a fax from, say, the US (where
it is not shabbas) to Israel (where it is), then the day before MUST be
chol and not yom tov otherwise, you could not send the fax (as it would
be yom tov in the US).  Similarly, if you are sending a fax in reverse,
it is after shabbas in Israel and still shabbas in the US, the best
analysis would seem to be that the day after (chol in Israel) is
preparing for the previous shabbas (in the US) - if it was yom tov on
that day, we could not send the fax.

That is, unlike the egg case, where there is a reason to make the
gezera, in the case of a fax it would seem that such a gezera is not
appriopriate (this is in addition to the principle that we do not really
have the power to extend rabbinical gezeras).

The problem I am having with the above analysis, is that I, like the two
people above, have been brought up with an understanding of nolad as
something "born" on shabbas, and even with the concept floating around
of change of states.  However, when I looked in the shulchan aruch under
nolad, what I came up with was Orech Chaim 322, which refers me straight
back to mesechet beitza and hachana. So where are the sources for these
other positions?

[Second posting combined with first by moderator]

After sending my previous posting, I realised that maybe there were some
muktza issues that ought to be discussed as well, as there is a nolad
concept in relation to muktza which may be applicable.  The classic case
is if you burn wood on yom tov (eg to cook your food) which of course
you are permitted to do, and thereby produce ashes, such ashes cannot be
used for some other purpose (eg the mitzvah of covering blood when you
shecht a wild animal or a bird) (S. A. Orech Chaim 498:15).  The source
for this is found on 8a of Beitza, and Tosphos explains that even Rabbi
Shimon would agree that muktza applies in this case, because on erev yom
tov there was wood and on yom tov ashes were created which is nolad

However, the issue of muktza relates to whether one can move or use
the object (eg the ashes) once produced - I have not been able to find
where it extends to the concept of production of new items such as ashes
(the opposite would seem to be the case, ie one is clearly permitted to
produce ashes, as an inevitable consequence of an action one is
permitted to do, namely burn wood for cooking on yom tov).

The discussion in relation to the fax, at least as I understand it, is
whether or not one may *send* a fax from a country in which it is still
chol to a country where it is shabbas.  It is not clear to me how the
concept of mutkza applies to the sending (whereas, as you can see from
my previous post, the concept of hachana from a previous day may have
relevance because it relates to activities performed prior to
shabbas/yom tov).  On the other hand I can see that there may be an
issue of mutkza in relation to the recipient - that is, once the fax is
there and lying on one's fax machine, is one permitted to move the fax
while it is still shabbas, or is it muktza?

The answer to that question would seem to me to hinge on a whole raft
of issues including:

a) is the fax something comparable to wood and ashes, or is it 
something more comparable to changes induced by cooking ie to what
extent is it really the production of something new (this seems to be
the issue that other people have focussed on)? 

c) if the fax contains divrei torah, does the concept of muktza apply to it
at all?

c) where preparation from before shabbas is required, what is sufficient
preparation? As Rashi describes the problem in relation to the
wood/ashes question, the issue is whether his mind was upon it
from yesterday.  Yesterday, all there was was wood, and it was fit for
burning for cooking etc, but clearly it was not fit for doing anything
that ashes can be used for (eg covering up blood).  Likewise in the case
of dirt, sufficient preparation is if one gathered it up before yom tov
and brought it into the house.  In the case of the fax, is it sufficient
that the fax machine was left switched on prior to yom tov and fax paper
put in the machine?  After all, the person receiving has clearly by
these actions indicated that he expects and anticipates faxes which may
arrive on shabbas/yom tov.  (One of the other issues discussed in
relation to the egg case is the difference between a hen that is
designated for the laying of eggs and a hen that is designated for
eating on yom tov and the mutkza implications thereof and this may be of

d) and perhaps most interesting - whose yesterday and today should
apply?  In the case of wood and ashes, everybody agrees that the
wood became ashes on yom tov or was prepared before yom tov - it
doesn't matter if it was done by one person or another.  In our case,
viewed from the point of view of a person within shabbas, the fax was
produced on shabbas, and it all happened on shabbas, so the most
straightforward answer is that it is equivalent to the preparation being
done on shabbas.  On the other hand, that person knows that the action
was actually done by a person for whom it is not yet shabbas, so the
preparation, the actual human decision making, took place not on
shabbas. One possible  analogy (although I can see a number of flaws)
is the case in Israel where it may be yom tov sheni for a chutznik, but
chol for somebody who lives there.  We appear to hold (even those
who hold quite strictly that yom tov sheni should be kept by chutnikim in
Israel) that if an Israeli does an act (even for the chutznik) on yom tov
sheni the chutznik may benefit from it (and nobody appears to suggest
a muktza problem).

Lets take the case further - what if,  by use of remote control, I turned
lights on and off in a house in shabbas.  What if, again by remote
control, I sent out my little digging machine to dig up some earth and
bring it into the house on yom tov  - could such dirt be used for covering
of blood (either by remote control or locally)? (ie there is no question of
nolad here, just straightforward preparation or lack of it).  Is it so clear
that it is always the act itself that transforms things from muktza to non
muktza? What about the effectiveness of verbal designations? Of the
importance of his daas being upon it?  But once you start making the
essence of muktza the state of mind, rather than the act itself, you risk
querying whether a state of mind located in chol which is preparing for
shabbat (albeit a shabbat that has already occurred elsewhere) might
not have the same effect as a state of mind located in chol preparing for
a shabbas which is about to happen in the same location. (of course, in
most cases of faxes, the intention even of the sender is that it shall be
read after shabbas in the location in question, but what if the fax is in
fact a dvar torah which the sender intended that the recipient should
use eg in shul on shabbas and the recipient knew it was coming - it all
having been prearranged.  It is really so easy to say that daas is

In any event, muktza would seem to involve moving, if the fax machine is
designed so a person can read the fax without moving it or even touching
it, I am struggling to see how muktza applies.

That takes us back to my question as to where are the sources that make
the act of production of the transition of states ossur on shabbas/yom
tov (as opposed to issues of muktza, which relate to movement and/or use
of such an object once it has been produced).

Kind Regards


From: Ari Kahn <kahnar@...>
Date: Sun, 13 Jun 1999 18:34:51 +0300
Subject: Re: FAXES and Eggs Born on Shabbath

Regarding the discussions on sending or receiving Faxes on Shabbat. In
the sefer Piski Teshuvot (by Rav Simcha Rabinovitz). [The book is an
updated sharie teshuva which brings many modern responsa according to
the order of the Shulchan oruch and the Mishna Berura. So far 3 volumes
have been published (3,5,6)] volume 3 section 252:7 he cites Responsa
Choshav Haephod (3:86) Kinyan Torah (6:17) prohibiting both receiving
faxes from non-Jews or Jews from a time zone which is not Shabbat
because of Shvitat Kelim. In section 344:2 where he cites the haskama of
Rav M.A Freund to the sefer Vayeshev Moshe who is machmer, and does not
allow the receiving of faxes on shabbat from a time zone which is not
shabbat, and the The Sefer Yovel for the Chatam Sofer, the notes by
R' A.D.  Horovitz (author of Kinyan Torah) many reasons why one must
disconnect the fax before shabbat.

In general it is well known that Rav Moshe Feinstein was quite hesitant
to allow use of electric timers on shabbat for similar concerns. His
logic was, that had chazal known about these devises they would have
prohibited them, as they did work by animals and non-Jews (in situations
where the Torah did not prohibit the usage). I have heard Rav Aharon
Lichtenstien use the same logic in a response to a query regarding the
permissibility of using a VCR on shabbat (where it is set prior to
shabbat and the person will watch after shabbat). As the use of machines
becomes more complex, it is easy to imagine a time when due to complete
automation factories can function on Shabbat without any external input,
clearly Chazal would have disallowed this.

If the machines make noise there may also be a concern of "Hashmaat
Kol". The paper which comes out may very well be Nolad, and
therefore muktza, (though here the reasoning would be circular).

A separate question would be receiving faxes (or email) in Israel after
shabbat, from time zones where it is still shabbat.

Ari Kahn


End of Volume 28 Issue 77