Reciprocal Kindness

In the last few days of daf yomi, (Ketubot pages 22 and 23) we are been learning about the tragic situation where a woman is taken captive and the issue of whether she was molested becomes an issue. Earlier we learned that if the woman states without being prompted, I was captured, but not molested or attacked, she is believed based upon the idea,” by her mouth she can prohibit herself and permit herself” The next case is when two women state without being prompted , “I and this other women was captured and we were not molested”. The Rabbis say, we believe them and they are eligible to marry kohanim. The Rabbis say we are not concerned with collusion or “reciprocal kindness.” The word the talmud uses is “Gomlin” as in Gemilut Chasideim or acts of kindness. What a strange word.”Kindness”

How is the kindness? clearly this smells more of collusion. The Shikkerdovid always like to find the gemilut chesed in everything. The answer is that each women probably would have been believed on themselves if they openly said “I was a captive, but not molested” based upon “her own mouth will prohibit or permit”. When they come together and vouch for each other, they showing each other a kindness, speaking out for each other, maybe even subjecting themselves to scrutiny. The chesed is that they are thinking of each other They are concerned for each other.

The Talmud went out of its way to use this word. We should go out of our way to do gemilutchesed.

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