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Hiyya bar Abba

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

For the Amora of the Land of Israel of the 1st generation, see Rabbi Hiyya (Hiyya the Great).
For the Babylonian Amora of the 2nd and 3rd generation, Dean of the Pumbedita Academy, see Huna b. Hiyya.

Hiyya bar Abba or Rabbi Hiyya (Hebrew: רבי חייא בר אבא) was a third generation amoraic sage of the Land of Israel, of priestly descent, who flourished at the end of the third century.

YouTube Encyclopedic

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  • ✪ Dr Maurice Mizrahi - Maimonides' 13 Principles of Faith (V'zot ha-brachah)
  • ✪ Seminaara hiika Macaafa Qulqullu Dr. Bob Utleytiin, barnoota 13


(Paper Shuffling) I'm not saying that. Because, it's ridiculous! Fine... #Blessed ♪ (intro) ♪ Welcome to Jewish Music Toronto! I am Eli. Remember that all of our lesson and sing-along videos are closed captioned, so if you want to follow along, all you have to do is click the CC button at the bottom of the YouTube player. This week, we're picking up right where we left off at the end of our Pesach song lessons from last year. First, we started our Seder lessons with The Seder Song, Kadesh Urchatz. Then, after the blessings over the first cup of wine, the washing of our hands without a blessing, and the eating of the Karpas, we moved on to split the middle matzah and sing the song Ha Lachma Anya, all about the matzah itself. From there, the youngest at our Seder asked the Four Questions of Ma Nishtana, inquiring as to what made this night different from all other nights, and, finally, we began answering with the song Avadim Hayinu, explaining that we were once slaves in Egypt! Now we're getting into the real storytelling portion, which, in the Haggadah itself, is told over by a group of rabbis discussing the Pesach story themselves, and likely actually having their own Seder at the time. Leading into the story of the Four Sons comes the song we'll be doing this week, Baruch Hamakom (Blessed is the Omnipresent). So, let's bring up the board! If you're interested in knowing more about the song itself, keep watching or click here for the song's background. Otherwise, you can skip to its author and composer, or right to the lyrics and melody! Don't worry. If you click any of the links, I'll stay right here so you can come back and jump to another section of your choosing later on. Let's get into it! Here comes the Background! Baruch Hamakom is a song praising Hashem both in general, and for giving the Jewish people the Torah. So what does the word "Hamakom" (The Place), have to do with Hashem? While the word does literally translate to mean "The Place", its use in the context of a name for Hashem is just one of the many names of God, just like Shalom, which also means "peace", Elokim, which among other meanings translates to "judge", and even Hashem, which literally just means "the name". In this particular instance, various commentaries on the name suggest that it is used to show at least a couple of different concepts. The first is to remind us that Hashem is, quite literally, omnipresent, even when that presence is not explicitly felt, as in the case of the death of a loved one, for which the phrase extended to mourners begins "Hamakom Y'Nachem Etchem... (May the Omnipresent comfort you)". This take on the name is rather poignant in the case of the Exodus, because of all the hardships the Jewish people had to endure during their time as slaves in Egypt. Another is the idea that Hashem is not a part of this world, but that the complete reverse is true. The world, the universe, EVERYTHING, is a part of Hashem. Follow the links down in the description to learn more! There's also a particularly cool commentary down there from about the number of times the word Baruch (Blessed) appears in the song. I highly suggest checking it out after the lesson. So let's move on to the author! Being that Baruch Hamakom appears in the Haggadah, the general authorship of the Haggadah itself is attributed to a wide variety of rabbis, especially when you consider the updates between the years of Rav Saadia Gaon and the Rambam (between the 9th and 13th centuries). As for the section on the Four Sons, likely including Baruch Hamakom itself, that section was brought in by Rabbi Chiyya according to Haaretz. This Rabbi Hiyya was a student to Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi, who you may recall I mentioned last week for our last Purim lesson. Why did he need to go by so many names? Well, when there are at least five different Rabbi Yehudas in the Talmud, including Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi (Rabbi Judah the Prince as he was known) himself, You'd better have a way of differentiating between them. Well guess what! You might not have expected it, but we have a similar name problem here, with at least three different Rabbi Chiyyas too! Now, I believe that the Rabbi Chiyya we're talking about this week is Rabbi Chiyya bar Abba. And, at least in this circumstance, it's likely that we've got it right, because he was also known specifically as just Rabbi Chiyya, rather than Chiyya the Great or Chiyya bar Yosef. Rabbi Chiyya lived right around the time of Rabbi Yehudah HaNasi, between the times of the Tana'im and the Amora'im. In order to bring in his livelihood, Rabbi Chiyya would go from town to town on speaking engagements. But don't go thinking that these were high-paying gigs, because he was essentially broke, and these were his only way of making ends meet. There's plenty more on him in the links below, via Wikipedia and the Jewish Encyclopedia. On to the composer! Oh, this one is a bit of a toughy. Normally, when I have trouble finding information, that's it. I've got nothing. This time, however, I did managed to find a bread crumb - A tiny little morsel that pointed in the right direction, but that I just couldn't seem to follow. So here's what I currently have, and maybe you could help me out with this. I managed to track down one cover of the melody on a Pesach album produced by Temple Emanuel of Newton, MA, called Let My People Sing. Included in the track information was the information on the composer, named... R. Kenigsberg... And that's really it... Because, try as I might, including name alterations in both English and Hebrew, I couldn't seem to track down who this R. Kenigsberg might be. So I reached out to Cantor Elias Rosemberg from Temple Emanuel himself, hoping that he might be able to shed some light, and I'll update the description with any new information should he get back to me! But if you know some information yourself, leave a comment below letting me know! Let's get into the lyrics! This is a nice, fun and easy one to pick up. There aren't too many words, and they repeat with little complication. The lyrics are: Bah-ruch Hah-mah-kom, Bah-ruch Hoo Blessed is the Omnipresent, Blessed is He Bah-ruch Sheh-nah-tan To-rah, L'ah-mo Yis-rah-el Blessed is the One who gave the Torah to His nation, Israel Baruch Hu Blessed is He Because this is a short song, I'm going to try something a little new today, and I'll speak the words as they're sung. As sung, the lyrics would go: Bah-ruch Hah-mah-kom, Bah-ruch Hoo Bah-ruch Sheh-nah-tan, Nah-tan To-rah Sheh-nah-tan To-rah, L'ah-mo Yis-rah-el Bah-ruch Hah-mah-kom, Bah-ruch Hoo Bah-ruch Hah-mah-kom, Bah-ruch Hoo Bah-ruch Sheh-nah-tan To-rah Sheh-nah-tan To-rah, L'ah-mo Yis-rah-el Bah-ruch Hoo Sheh-nah-tan To-rah, L'ah-mo Yis-rah-el Bah-ruch Hoo Finally, it's time for the melody! The melody goes: ♪ Bah-ruch Hah-mah-kom, Bah-ruch Hoo ♪ ♪ Bah-ruch Sheh-nah-tan, Nah-tan To-rah ♪ ♪ Sheh-nah-tan To-rah, L'ah-mo Yis-rah-el ♪ ♪ Bah-ruch Hah-mah-kom, Bah-ruch Hoo ♪ ♪ Bah-ruch Hah-mah-kom, Bah-ruch Hoo ♪ ♪ Bah-ruch Sheh-nah-tan To-rah ♪ ♪ Sheh-nah-tan To-rah, L'ah-mo Yis-rah-el ♪ ♪ Bah-ruch Hoo ♪ ♪ Sheh-nah-tan To-rah, L'ah-mo Yis-rah-el ♪ ♪ Bah-ruch Hoo ♪ One more time! ♪ Bah-ruch Hah-mah-kom, Bah-ruch Hoo ♪ ♪ Bah-ruch Sheh-nah-tan, Nah-tan To-rah ♪ ♪ Sheh-nah-tan To-rah, L'ah-mo Yis-rah-el ♪ ♪ Bah-ruch Hah-mah-kom, Bah-ruch Hoo ♪ ♪ Bah-ruch Hah-mah-kom, Bah-ruch Hoo ♪ ♪ Bah-ruch Sheh-nah-tan To-rah ♪ ♪ Sheh-nah-tan To-rah, L'ah-mo Yis-rah-el ♪ ♪ Bah-ruch Hoo ♪ ♪ Sheh-nah-tan To-rah, L'ah-mo Yis-rah-el ♪ ♪ Bah-ruch Hoo ♪ That's it for this week's lesson! Be sure to come back later in the week for our sing-along to Baruch Hamakom, and definitely take a look at those links down below for more information on Pesach and the song! And I have a question for you this week. What is your favourite Pesach Seder tradition? Maybe you're a fan of Matzah Ball Soup? What about the search for the Afikoman? Or is your big thing gathering around the Seder table and making your own commentary on the Pesach story? Let me know in the comments below! If you're enjoying our videos, be sure to subscribe and share. We really appreciate the support. That subscribe button is right down there, and that share button is right down there. Just give them a click! You can find us on Facebook, at, and on Tumblr, at As always, links for all that and more down in the description below! Thanks for watching, and bye for now! Oh hey! Want to see more Pesach-related lessons and sing-alongs? Check out these videos for more Pesach fun!


In the Jerusalem Talmud he is also called Hiyya bar Ba or Hiyya bar Wa.[1] In both Talmuds he is frequently called merely R. Hiyya. He may have briefly studied with Samuel of Nehardea[2] in Babylon, his native land. When he was still very young, Hiyya migrated to Israel where he studied under Hanina and Joshua ben Levi. He may also have been influenced by Shimon ben Lakish. Hiyya was also a student of Rabbi Johanan. After Rabbi Johanan's death, Hiyya and his friends Rav Ammi and Rav Assi became recognized as some of Palestine's brightest halakhic scholars.

Hiyya was distinguished for the care with which he noted the sayings of his masters.[3] When questions arose about being faithful to tradition, Hiyya's interpretation was widely accepted.[4] Though he was the author of many aggadot, he denounced every attempt to collect and commit his tales to writing. Whenever he came upon such a collection, Hiyya cursed the hand that wrote it.[5] His focus was squarely on Halakhah.

The Jerusalem Talmud relates that when the Roman emperor Diocletian visited Tyre, Rabbi Hiyya bar Abba went so far as to "trample over graves" to go out and see him.[6]

With the help of Ammi and Assi, Hiyya formed a court of law. One day a woman named Tamar came before the court. Her case was a difficult one. The sentence handed down was controversial; Hiyya and his associates might have suffered disastrous consequences if Abbahu himself had not come to their assistance.[7]

Hiyya was forced to lecture from town to town in an effort to make ends meet. He even had to leave Palestine temporarily.[8] During these travels, when another lecturer on aggadah drew a bigger crowd than he did, Hiyya couldn't hide his annoyance.[9] To improve his circumstances, Hiyya accepted a commission from Judah II to collect money to help rebuild the decaying patriarchate.

The esteem in which Hiyya was held is evident in a letter of introduction Eleazar ben Pedath provided for him: "Behold, we have sent you a great man, our envoy. Until his return he possesses all the powers that we do." According to another version, the introduction read: "Behold, we have sent you a great man. His greatness consists in this, that he is not ashamed to say 'I know not'."[10]

Hiyya, Ammi, and Assi visited various communities in Israel at the behest of Judah II who entrusted them with reawakening interest in the study of Jewish Law.[11]

Hiyya had several brothers: R. Nathan ha-Kohen, also known as R. Kohen (or R. Nathan) b. Abba; Rabbannai, or R. Bannai; and R. Simeon ben Abba. He had several children, including R. Abba, R. Kahanah, and R. Nehemiah.


  1. ^ Jerusalem Talmud (Berakhot 3 (6a), 4 (7d)
  2. ^ Weiss, "Dor," 3:94
  3. ^ Berachot 38b
  4. ^ Berachot 32b, 38b
  5. ^ Jerusalem Talmud, Shabbat 16 (15c)
  6. ^ Jerusalem Talmud, Berakhot 3:1
  7. ^ Jerusalem Talmud, Megillah 3 (74a)
  8. ^ Jerusalem Talmud, Ma'aser Sheni 5 (56b)
  9. ^ see Jew. Encyc. i.36, s.v. Abbahu
  10. ^ Jerusalem Talmud, Hagigah 1 (76d), Nedarim 10 (42b)
  11. ^ Jerusalem Talmud, Hagigah 1 (76c)
  •  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainSolomon Schechter and Nathan Stern (1901–1906). "Hiyya bar Abba". In Singer, Isidore; et al. (eds.). The Jewish Encyclopedia. New York: Funk & Wagnalls.
This page was last edited on 15 August 2019, at 18:05
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