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killing it with an object that is thrown from a distance like an arrow rather than with one’s hands. If the dog is possessed by an evil spirit, one should avoid direct contact with it.

The Gemara comments: This was taught in a baraita in accordance with the opinion of Shmuel: When one kills a mad dog, he should kill it only with a thrown object. Furthermore, one who is rubbed by mad dog will become dangerously ill, while one bitten by the dog will die. The Gemara asks: What is the remedy for one who is rubbed by mad dog and becomes dangerously ill? The Gemara answers: Let him take off his clothing and run. The Gemara relates: Rav Huna, son of Rav Yehoshua, was rubbed by one of these mad dogs in the market, whereupon he took off his clothing and ran. He said: I have fulfilled the verse: “Wisdom preserves the lives of those who have it” (Ecclesiastes 7:12).

The Gemara continues to discuss the baraita: One bitten by a mad dog will die. The Gemara asks: What is the remedy? Abaye said: Let him bring the skin of a male hyena and write on it: I, so-and-so, son of so-and-so, am writing this spell about you upon the skin of a male hyena: Kanti kanti kelirus. And some say he should write: Kandi kandi keloros. He then writes names of God, Yah, Yah, Lord of Hosts, amen amen Selah. And let him take off his clothes and bury them in a cemetery for twelve months of the year, after which he should take them out, and burn them in an oven, and scatter the ashes at a crossroads. And during those twelve months of the year, when his clothes are buried, when he drinks water, let him drink only from a copper tube and not from a spring, lest he see the image of the demon in the water and be endangered, like the case of Abba bar Marta, who is also called Abba bar Manyumi, whose mother made him a gold tube for this purpose.

§ The mishna said: And furthermore, Rabbi Matya ben Ḥarash said: With regard to one who suffers pain in his throat, one may place medicine inside his mouth on Shabbat, although administering a remedy is prohibited on Shabbat. The Gemara discusses a related incident: Rabbi Yoḥanan suffered from the illness tzefidna, which first affects the teeth and gums and then the intestines. He went to a certain gentile matron [matronita] who was a well-known healer. She prepared a medicine for him on Thursday and Friday. He said to her: What shall I do on Shabbat, when I cannot come to collect the medicine from you? She said to him: You will not need it. He asked her: If I do need it, what shall I do? She said to him: Swear to me that you will not reveal the remedy; then I will tell you, and you can prepare it yourself should you need it. He swore: To the God of the Jews, I will not reveal it. She told him the remedy. Rabbi Yoḥanan then went out and taught it publicly, revealing the secret of the remedy.

The Gemara is surprised at this: But he swore to her that he would not reveal it. The Gemara answers that in his vow he declared: I will not reveal it to the God of the Jews. However, his words imply: I will reveal it to His people, the Jews. The Gemara asks: Still, there is a desecration of God’s name, as the matron now thinks that a great man of Rabbi Yoḥanan’s stature broke his vow. The Gemara answers: He revealed it to her at the outset. As soon as she revealed the remedy to him, he told her that his vow would not prevent him from publicizing the remedy.

The Gemara asks: What was the medicine that she prepared for him? Rav Aḥa, son of Rav Ami, said: It was water in which leaven was steeped, olive oil, and salt. Rav Yeimar said: It was leaven itself, olive oil, and salt. Rav Ashi said: The remedy was fat from the bone marrow of a goose’s wing. Abaye said: I made all of these medicines and was not cured from this ailment, until a certain Arab told me the remedy for it: Take olive seeds that are less than one-third ripe, and burn them in a fire on top of a new hoe, and stick them along the row of gums. I did this and was cured.

§ The Gemara asks: From where does this disease tzefidna come? It is from eating wheat bread that is too hot and fish remains fried in oil. What is the sign of this sickness? When one puts something between his teeth, blood comes out from his gums. When Rabbi Yoḥanan suffered from tzefidna, he prepared this medicine described above on Shabbat and was cured. The Gemara asks: And how did Rabbi Yoḥanan prepare this medicine on Shabbat for an ailment which affects only the gums but is not life-threatening? Rav Naḥman bar Yitzḥak said: Tzefidna is different, since it does indeed begin in the mouth and appears to be an illness of the teeth, but it ends up in the intestines and is dangerous.

Rav Ḥiyya bar Abba said to Rabbi Yoḥanan: In accordance with whose opinion did you do this? Was it not in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Matya ben Ḥarash, who said: In the case of one who suffers pain in his mouth, one puts medicine in his mouth on Shabbat, which is a minority opinion? Rabbi Yoḥanan said to him: It is so, but I say the Sages agreed with him about taking medicine in this case alone, but no other. If so, with regard to medicine on Shabbat, the view of Rabbi Matya ben Ḥarash is not a minority opinion.

Let us say that this baraita supports him: With regard to one who is seized with yerakon, one feeds him donkey meat as medicine; with regard to one whom a mad dog bit, one feeds him the lobe of its liver; in the case of one who has pain in his mouth, one puts medicine in his mouth on Shabbat; this is the statement of Rabbi Matya ben Ḥarash. And the Rabbis say: These have no value as a remedy. The Rabbis used the term these, to exclude what? What, is it not to exclude this medicine for tzefidna, which the Rabbis agree is permitted on Shabbat?

The Gemara rejects this: No, it excludes a different remedy, which Rabbi Matya suggests: Bloodletting to heal the ailment serunkhi is permitted on Shabbat. The Gemara comments: So too, this is reasonable to say, as it was taught in a baraita: Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yosei, said three things that he heard in the name of Rabbi Matya ben Ḥarash: One may let blood for serunkhi on Shabbat; and in the case of one whom a mad dog bit, one feeds him the lobe of its liver; and in the case of one who has pain in his mouth, one puts medicine in his mouth on Shabbat.

And the Rabbis say: These have no value as a remedy. The Rabbis used the term these to exclude what? What, is it not to limit their argument only to the latter two items, which do not cure anything, and to exclude the first item, bloodletting for serunkhi, which everyone agrees is an effective remedy? The Gemara rejects this: No, there is no proof from here, since it is possible to say that it is referring to the first two items of the first baraita and excludes the latter clause with regard to medicine on Shabbat, which they agree with.

Talmud - Bavli - The William Davidson digital edition of the Koren No=C3=A9 Talmud
with commentary by Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz Even-Israel (CC-BY-NC 4.0)
אדם סלומון
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