9/16/2008

Adjustments for Eretz Israel in Liturgy, from the Genizah

I
The Common version of certain prayers found in the Jewish Liturgy indicate that they may have originated in the Exile. One example is in Mussaf of Shabbat (Siddur Rambam, Appendix to Sefer Ahahva, Oxford Bodleian Hunt. 80 (Catalogue Neubauer 577), fol. 176a.)
: שתעלינו לארצינו ותטענו בגבולינו ושם נעשה לפניך קרבנות חובותינו
In the context of the complete sentece, "vesham"- is clearly not reffering to Temple specificly, but to "our land" in general, a place in which the composer of this prayer, or the supplicant who prays it, is not found in the present. Even the most revolutionary Zionist Poskim like R. Kasher or R. Goren z"l would not dare tamper with the canonized liturgy, where their Eretz Israeli predecessors did not even raise the issue. Yet it seems reasonable that for one praying in "our land" the term "sham" is not pertainent. It's just a matter of finding an authoritative precedent.
Naturally, the Geniza is the right place to look, having housed the newly exiled Eretz-Israeli Congregation, and practically the only source of remnants the pre-Crusade Eretz-Israeli rite. Unfortunately copies of Musaf for Shabbat are extremely rare in Geniza. There was little need to take down in writing a prayer recited weekly. Mussaf for Shabbat Rosh Hodesh, for example, is easier to find. True to the path of the Genizah scribes, Prof. Fleischer z"l (Tefilah Uminhagei Tefilah Eretz-Israeliim BeTqufat HaGenizah) devoted a whole chapter to Shabbat prayer, but dealt exclusively with the additional Piyut.
One of these rare fragments is Cambridge T-S H5.92, published by R. Simha Assaf (Sefer Dinaberg, 1949. pp 125-126) . Clearly this is an Erez-Israeli version, as the central blessing in the Shaharit Amida reads:
מקדש ישראל ואת יום השבת
As testified in Sefer Hahiluqim 32, this is peculiar to the Erez-Israeli rite, ignoring the Baylonian Talmudic ruling (TB Pesahim 117a) that the sanctity of Sabbath is independent of the Sanctitiy of Israel. The Mussaf here is damaged, but we can make out the following reading :
זכינו י'י אלהינו לבנין ביתך וקבוץ גולתך ושם נקריב לפניך תמידין כהלכתן ומוספין כסדרן
"Vesham" is there, although the context is different than our version. The Temple is the subject before "vesham" so it's pertainent to a supplication from Erez Israel as well. One also should take into account that this Siddur may have been written in the exile, where it was found, and it would be most proper that "vesham" be adopted from the Exilic Siddur.
Cambridge UL Or. 1080.10.14 is also clearly in Erez Israeli rite, as it bears the same indicator as above. Here we find a version much closer to the common one:
יהי רצון מלפניך י'י אלהינו שתעלינו לארצינו ותטעינו בגבולנו ונעשה לפניך את קרבן זובחינו תמידין ומוספין כהלכתן
Notice, no "vesham". The exact same words are found in Mosseri IX 88.2. Such is also the reading in Siddur of R. Sa'adiah Gaon, (Oxford Bodleian Ms Hunt. 448; Catalogue Neubauer 1096, fol. 85a; publication- Davidson, Assaf, Yoel 1963, p.118). and Siddur Shlomo ben Nathan MiSajelmassa, (Oxford Poc. 262; Cat. 896; ed. Kroizer 1995, p. 35). It seems more logical that this is an exilic prayer tailored for its adaptation in the Erez Israeli Siddur, than to suggest that this is the original version of the prayer and "vesham" was added in the Diaspora version. The theme "sheta'alenu learzenu" indicates that the prayer as a whole is organic to the Exile. An Erez-Israelite composer is more likely to supplicate for the ingathering of his co-religionists from the exile, as found in the abovementioned T-S H5 version.
Worth mentioning; is the "sham" in the blessing after the Passover Haggadah: ונאכל שם מן הזבחים, (R. Akiva in Mishnah Pesahim X 6)) is clearly relating to Jerusalem only, yet is missing in the Eretz Israeli Mishnah (Kaufmann, seen below, and Parma):  לוכל, לאוכל. This version is also recorded in the Mishnah in Alfasi's halakhot Genizah Cambridge T-S G2, 52, and goes as far as Rambam in both Commentary on Mishnah and the very reliable Sutro 117 copy of Mishne Torah (Hametz VIII 5).
II
In the Special, complete, Kadish recited at Siyum or burial (As in Siddur Rambam, ibid fol. 174a; Ramban, Torat Ha-Adam, Ha-evel, Ha-Hathalah)
ולמעקר פולחנא נוכראה מארעא
In the expanded Kadish found in Geniza Budapest DKG 97 p. a-b (published in Mipum Aryivata, 2002, pp. 14-16):
ולמעקר פולחנה נַוכּרִאה מארענא
That is "to uproot idolatry from our land" as opposed to "from the earth" in the common version.
This is more difficult to qualify as an adjustment, as it appears elsewhere, in Mahzor Vitry (par. 279),  and in the Mahzor Ashkenaz ms Paris bn 646, although this European text could also be a vestige of an Erez-Israeli version.
Mahzor Paris BN Heb. 646 fol. 243a

This is apparently not only an alteration for geographic context, but justified both by content and source text. There is no commandment to abolish idolatry outside of "our land" (Sifri on Duet. XII 3) thus the blessing upon seeing a demolished site of idolatry is perscribed in Mishna Berakhot IX 1 (and Tosefta Berakhot VI ) הרואה מקום שנעקרה ממנו עבודה זרה מברך ברוך שעקר עבודה זרה מארצנו
This passage in kaddish is can be traced to the above Blessing, and thus reflects its emphasis on "our land".
III
In the common version of the contracted Grace after meals "me'ain shalosh", wine produced in Eretz Israel is specified: על פרי גפנה, yet no special blessing is specified for grains of Eretz Israel. The 13nth cent pilgrim Ashtorai HaFarhi (Kaftor VaPerah chap. II) suggests such a variant in the complete Grace ועל מזונותיה and in the short version: ועל מחייתה.
although he raises this suggestion from logic- "mistavra", indicating that he knows of no such tradition. In the Geniza fragment London BL Or. 5563 A5 (fol. 9), in a Judea- Arabic version of Halakhot Pesuqot (parallel to, in the Sassoon ms p. 295, in the printed edition p. 192 ) we find precisely this reading at the end of the short blessing- ועל מזונותיה. See also Peat Hashulkhan, Hilkhot Eretz Israel II 14; Responsa Tzitz Eliezer vol. XI no. 12.
Gmb 011

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