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Mishnayos Nedarim Perek 2 Mishnah 5

נדרים פרק ב׳ משנה ה׳


One who took a vow by associating an item with a dedication [ḥerem], saying: This item is hereby forbidden to me like an item dedicated to the Temple, and then said: I took a vow only with the intention that it would be like a sea net [ḥermo shel yam] that is used to catch fish; or one who took a vow by associating an item with an offering, and then said: I took a vow only with reference to offerings to kings, i.e., a gift for a king, not an offering to God. Or one who said: I am hereby an offering myself [atzmi], and then said: I took a vow only with reference to a bone [etzem] that I set aside for myself to vow with, as atzmi means both myself and my bone, i.e., he set aside a bone so as to pretend to take a vow upon himself; or one who said: Deriving benefit from me is konam for my wife, and then said: I took a vow only with regard to my first wife whom I divorced, not with regard to my current wife. For all of the above vows, those who took them do not need to request of a halakhic authority to dissolve them, as the speaker interpreted the vows in a manner that caused them not to take effect at all. However, if they requested dissolution, apparently due to their being uncertain of their explanations, the court punishes them and treats them stringently and the vows are not dissolved. This is the statement of Rabbi Meir. And the Rabbis say: These vows are not treated stringently. Rather, dissolution is broached with them by suggesting a different extenuation, i.e., the halakhic authority suggests extenuating circumstances that undermine the vow but do not pertain to its wording. And we teach them that they should not take this kind of vow in the future, in order that they will not take vows lightly.

נָדַר בְּחֵרֶם וְאָמַר, לֹא נָדַרְתִּי אֶלָּא בְחֶרְמוֹ שֶׁל יָם. בְּקָרְבָּן, וְאָמַר, לֹא נָדַרְתִּי אֶלָּא בְקָרְבָּנוֹת שֶׁל מְלָכִים. הֲרֵי עַצְמִי קָרְבָּן, וְאָמַר, לֹא נָדַרְתִּי אֶלָּא בְעֶצֶם שֶׁהִנַּחְתִּי לִי לִהְיוֹת נוֹדֵר בּוֹ. קוֹנָם אִשְׁתִּי נֶהֱנֵית לִי, וְאָמַר לֹא נָדַרְתִּי אֶלָּא בְאִשְׁתִּי הָרִאשׁוֹנָה שֶׁגֵּרַשְׁתִּי, עַל כֻּלָּן אֵין נִשְׁאָלִים לָהֶם. וְאִם נִשְׁאֲלוּ, עוֹנְשִׁין אוֹתָן וּמַחְמִירִין עֲלֵיהֶן, דִּבְרֵי רַבִּי מֵאִיר. וַחֲכָמִים אוֹמְרִים, פּוֹתְחִין לָהֶם פֶּתַח מִמָּקוֹם אַחֵר, וּמְלַמְּדִים אוֹתָן כְּדֵי שֶׁלֹּא יִנְהֲגוּ קַלּוּת רֹאשׁ בַּנְּדָרִים:


בחרמו של ים – the language of a net, as in (Ecclesiastes 7:26): “[Now, I find women more bitter than death,] she is all traps , her hands are fetters, [and her heart is snares].”

הרי עצמי קרבן – he forbade himself like a KORBAN/sacrifice upon his fellow.

אין נשאלים עליהם – it is not necessary for a request to a Sage [to release him from a vow] for they don’t take effect.

ואם נשאלין – but if this person is an illiterate person/Am HaAretz who made a vow in such a manner and he came to request from a Sage [to release him] from his vow, we don’t make an opening for him for regret and we don’t release him. But if he transgressed on this vow, we excommunicate him.

פוחתין לו פתח ממקום אחר – we show him that the matter exists and we make an opening for him for another reason and release him from his vow. But we don’t punish him and we are not stringent with him. And such is the Halakha.

בחרמו של ים. לשון מצודה, כמו אשר היא מצודים וחרמים (קהלת ז׳.):

הרי עצמי קרבן. אסר עצמו כקרבן על חבירו:

אין נשאלים עליהם. אין צריכין שאלת חכם, שאינן חלים:

ואם נשאלו. ואם עם הארץ הוא זה שנדר כהאי גוונא ובא לישאל על נדרו, אין פותחין לו פתח לחרטה ואין מתירין לו. ואם עבר על נדרו זה מנדין אותו:

פותחין לו פתח ממקום אחר. מראים לו שהדבר קיים ופותחין לו פתח מטעם אחר ומתירין לו נדרו. אבל לא עונשין ולא מחמירין. וכן הלכה: