What is Talmud Tweets?

What is Talmud Tweets? A short, personal take on a page of Talmud - every day!

For several years now, I have been following the tradition of "Daf Yomi" - reading a set page of Talmud daily. With the start of a new 7 1/2 year cycle, I thought I would share a taste of what the Talmud offers, with a bit of personal commentary included. The idea is not to give a scholarly explanation. Rather, it is for those new to Talmud to give a little taste - a tweet, as it were - of the richness of this text and dialogue it contains. The Talmud is a window into a style of thinking as well as the world as it changed over the centuries of its compilation.

These are not literal "tweets" - I don't limit myself to 140 characters. Rather, these are intended to be short, quick takes - focusing in on one part of a much richer discussion. Hopefully, I will pique your interest. As Hillel says: "Go and study it!" (Shabbat 31a)

Monday, January 21, 2013

Shabbat 110 – Cures for What "Ales" You

Several more “cures” – so that one knows what cannot be taken on Shabbat.

A few ways to respond if one is being hunted by a snake (jump and ditch, cross a river, sleep in a bed set on for barrels set outside [so it can’t attack from the ceiling], tie four cats to the legs of the bed and put plants fronds under the bed so the cats can hear when the snake is approaching and eat it. Bet you never thought of that!)

Also, how to extract a snake which has entered a woman’s uterus (did such things happen?). You don’t want to know.

The page also contains extensive and increasingly bizarre treatments for a woman who is a zabba – one having a non-menstrual discharge (i.e. gonorrhea) to cure and keep her from being barren. Also cures for jaundice but which will make a man impotent.

On the positive side, though, there is a recipe for Egyptian beer: one part barley (or wheat – there is some disagreement), one part safflower, and one part salt. When drunk after Passover until Shavuot it is a laxative for the constipated and a binding agent for those with diarrhea.

You’re welcome.

No comments:

Post a Comment