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CHUMASH

Parshas Va'eschanan - Shishi with Rashi

In today’s Chumash, Moshe Rabbeinu tells the Yidden the parsha of Shema, that the Yidden should keep their emunah strong, remember Hashem, remember Yetziyas Mitzrayim, and remember their achrayus to keep the mitzvos!

Today’s Chumash starts off with Shema! We learn the whole Shema, until Uvisharecha! Rashi explains that “Hashem Elokeinu Hashem Echod” is talking about Moshiach — when Moshiach comes, Hashem’s name will be one!

We need to love Hashem “bechol levavcha” — with our Yetzer Tov, AND our Yetzer Hara.

In the first parsha of Shema, we have the first five of the Ten Mivtzoyim! Ahavas Yisroel (as the Alter Rebbe explained that one of the ways we love Hashem is through loving a Yid), Chinuch, Torah, Tefillin, and Mezuzah. Can you find them all in the first parsha of Shema?

Then Moshe tells the Yidden to be careful when they come into Eretz Yisroel, not to forget about Hashem. Since Hashem had the Goyim build cities for the Yidden, and dig them wells and plant them trees, it might be easy to forget that HASHEM is Who gave them all of these things!

The Yidden shouldn’t worship Avodah Zarah — it will make Hashem upset and He will punish them. Instead, they should be careful to keep all the mitzvos, and Hashem will be happy for the Yidden to live in Eretz Yisroel!

Then Moshe tells us something we know from the Haggadah:

If your son asks you “What are these mitzvos Hashem gave to you?” You should explain — Avadim Hayinu — we were slaves to Paraoh in Mitzrayim, and Hashem took us out so we could go to Eretz Yisroel! Hashem gave us all of these mitzvos so we will stay alive, and it is our zechus to keep them.

 
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TEHILLIM

77 - 78

Today’s kapitelach are Ayin-Zayin and Ayin-Ches.

In Kapitel Ayin-Ches, which is in today’s Tehillim, there is a posuk that says “Vayakem Eidus BeYaakov, VeSora Sam BeYisroel” — “Hashem set up the Torah and mitzvos for Yaakov and Yisroel.” This kapitel also tells us why — so that the Torah will be passed on forever.

Chassidus teaches us that each of the Avos has something different and special about them, and they pass that on to all of the Yidden. These gifts from the Avos help us be better Yidden!

This Kapitel tells us that Hashem “set up the Torah for Yaakov,” by letting Yaakov Avinu spend SO much time learning Torah. This koach is passed down to us — that we will be able to learn lots of Torah too!

 
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TANYA

Igeres Hakodesh Siman Hey

It says in the posuk, “Vaya’as Dovid Sheim” — “Dovid made a name.” The Zohar explains that Dovid Hamelech made HASHEM’S name!

How can a person make Hashem’s name? Isn’t Hashem’s name already there?

In this Igeres Hakodesh we will see how this can be, and that the way we do it is through giving tzedakah.

But first let’s learn something about the way a person speaks. We see something very interesting about speaking: A person THINKS about what they are going to say! But we don’t think about the way we move our mouth to talk — that part comes from a deeper part of the neshama than the WORDS we want to say. That’s why a little kid can understand what’s happening, and WANTS to say something, but can’t say the words yet. Because that part of the neshama takes more time for the body to grow into.

What does this have to do with making Hashem’s name? We will see IY”H over the next few days!

 
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HAYOM YOM

Tes-Vov Menachem Av

In today’s Hayom Yom we learn what is so special about Chamisha Asar B’Av!

The Rebbe Rashab wrote something that teaches us how special today (Chamisha-Asar B’Av) is!

Really, the 15th day of EVERY month is special, because the moon is full — we can see the whole thing! Yidden are like the moon. Sometimes the world can see how special we are, and sometimes the Yidden are suffering and nobody can see it. When the moon is full, that is a sign of seeing how special Yidden are!

But the 15th of Av is EXTRA special. Many happy things happened today. And it is after the WORST thing that could happen to us — the Beis Hamikdash was destroyed and Yidden were sent into Golus.

Whenever something not good happens, Hashem does something good for Yidden later. Since Chamisha Asar B’Av comes after the WORST thing, it must be that it is the BEST kind of good!

What is the best kind of good thing? Moshiach, of course! Chamisha Asar B’av reminds us of the special time that is about to happen — Moshiach coming and the third Beis Hamikdash!

 
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SEFER HAMITZVOS

Shiur #11 - Mitzvas Asei #11

In today’s Sefer Hamitzvos, we learn one very important mitzvah: We need to teach Torah to our kinderlach or our talmidim, and also learn ourselves! We need to make sure we know it well enough so that even if they ask questions, we can answer them right away.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Vaeschanan: וְשִׁנַּנְתָּם לְבָנֶיךָ

The details are explained in many places in Gemara.

 
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RAMBAM

Hilchos Talmud Torah

Perek Beis: The very first halacha in today’s Rambam is that if a city doesn’t have teachers for small children to learn Torah, the city deserves to be destroyed! That’s because the Torah of small children is what makes the world exist!

We also learn rules for teachers: They can’t do other work while they’re teaching, because it distracts them from teaching. A teacher also need to make sure that his class isn’t too big. A teacher isn’t allowed to get upset at his students if they didn’t understand something.

Perek Gimmel: The Rambam tells us how important and special learning Torah is. Every single Yid is able to have the crown of Torah!

In Perek Daled, we learn a very important halacha for talmidim — if we don’t understand something, we need to keep asking until we do understand!

We also learn when someone can take a break from learning Torah: One time is when there is a mitzvah that needs to be done, and nobody else can do it. BUT, kinderlach don’t stop learning Torah, even to help build the Beis Hamikdash — that’s how important their Torah learning is!

 
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RAMBAM PEREK ECHOD

Hilchos Keilim - Perek Daled

This perek explains the three kinds of wooden keilim that are not containers:
1) Keilim that are only for people to use (they can’t become tomei) — like a ladder
2) Keilim that are used for people AND for other keilim (they can become tomei) — like a table, since we use it to eat off of, but also to put things down on, and a bed, since it also holds blankets.
3) Keilim that are only there to use for other keilim. If it only helps when it’s being used, like a candle holder, that holds a candle or oil while it’s being used, then it’s always tahor. But if also helps when the keili isn’t being used (like the cover of a box, or a money purse) then it can become tomei.

We also learn about when one part of a keili is botul — because it doesn’t have its own job, like a decoration on a knife.

 
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INYANA D'YOMA

Chamisha Asar B'Av

Why today is a Yom Tov: We learned in Hayom Yom that today is a very happy day! It is one of the biggest Yomim Tovim of the whole year! Here are some of the special things that happened today for Yidden:

- The gezeira that the Yidden were supposed to die in the Midbar ended, and all of the Yidden who were alive were ready to go into Eretz Yisroel! Hashem was now ready to talk to Moshe in a special way again.

- To make sure that every Shevet got the right part of Eretz Yisroel, people could only get married to someone in the same Shevet. But on the 15th of Av, that rule finished, and now the Yidden could get married to someone in ANY shevet!

- Shevet Binyamin was forgiven for doing a very big aveira, and now they could be part of the rest of the Yidden again!

- The king Hoshea opened up the roads to Yerushalayim so the Yidden could go to the Beis Hamikdash, after a not good king had blocked them.

- The Yidden were finally able to do the big mitzvah of burying the Yidden who were killed in Beitar.

- 15 Av was the day, every year, when the Yidden finished cutting wood for the Mizbeiach. Afterwards, they would break the axes, so today is also called “the day of the axe breaking!”

A day for chasunas: For many years, on this Yom Tov of Chamisha Asar B’Av, the Yidden would have a special minhag to help boys and girls get married! Girls would share their clothes so that nobody could tell if they were rich or poor. They would dance together in the fields, with the happiness of Yom Tov. Bochurim that wanted to get married would choose one of them! (Since it was Yom Tov, everyone was EXTRA careful with tznius, and they were doing this just for Hashem!)

Happiness after sadness: Like we learned in Hayom Yom, Yidden are compared to the moon. In the middle of the month, when the moon is full, it shows how the Yidden are in their full glory! Since it is after the sad day of Tisha B’av, the happiness of the middle of the month is the greatest it can be!

A Torah day: Another special thing about today is that the nights start getting longer! Now we can learn more Torah, since night time is a very special time for learning Torah!

Getting ready for Rosh Hashana: Today we start getting ready for Chodesh Elul and for Rosh Hashana! Many people have a minhag that starting today, we wish each other a Kesiva Vachasima Tova!

There is even a hint in the day: The Gematria of the words Chamisha Asar B’Av is the same as the words “Ksiva Vachasima Tova!”

 

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TEFILLAH

Korban Tomid

Chassidus shows us how the Korban Tomid teaches us what davening is all about!

The main part of davening, the way the Anshei Keneses Hagedolah set it up, is Shemoneh Esrei, where we ask Hashem for our needs. Still, the main point of davening is much deeper.

The word “tefillah” also means “connection,” and by davening, we connect ourselves to Hashem. We do ask for our needs in davening, but that’s because only by having the things we need can we really be close to Hashem!

We can learn this from the Korban Tomid, which was a Korban Olah.

When most korbanos are brought, part of the animal is burned on the Mizbeiach, part of it goes to the kohanim, and part of it goes to the person who brought it. But a Korban Olah is different. The ENTIRE korban is burned on the Mizbeiach, and no person gets a piece.

When we daven, we are doing it just like a Korban Olah! We aren’t expecting to get anything for ourselves, all we want is to come close to Hashem and live the way He wants us to.

 
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HALACHOS HATZRICHOS

Chamisha Asar B'Av

Because of all of the special things that happened on Chamisha Asar B’Av, we have a few minhagim which we keep today:

1) We make a farbrengen to celebrate all of these things! It is a great time to bring Achdus, since that is what many of the things that happened today are about!

2) We make hachlatos to learn extra Torah — with ourselves and with others. The Torah gives us a promise that increasing in learning Torah will bring long life! The Rebbe says that this is important for men and women, and also for children!

3) We start wishing each other a Kesiva Vachasima Tova, in writing and talking.

לעילוי נשמת הרה״ח ר׳ דניאל יצחק ע״ה בן ר׳ אפרים שי׳ מאסקאוויץ
שליח כ"ק אדמו"ר נשיא דורנו למדינת אילינוי

 
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GEULAH U'MOSHIACH

What the World Will Be Like

The Rambam tells us what the world will be like when Moshiach comes! In the last halacha, the Rambam says:

וּבְאוֹתוֹ הַזְמַן לֹא יִהְיֶה שָׁם לֹא רָעָב וְלֹא מִלְחָמָה וְלֹא קִנְאָה וְתַחַרוּת שֶׁהַטוֹבָה תִּהְיֶה מוּשְׁפַּעַת הַרְבֵּה וְכָל הַמַעַדַנִים מְצוּיִין כְּעָפָר

Uve’oso Hazman — And in that time (the days of Moshiach)

Lo Yihiyeh Sham — There will not be in the world

Lo Raav Velo Milchama — No hunger and no war

Velo Kina Vesacharus — And no jealousy or competition

Shehatova Tihiyeh Mushpaas Harbei — Because there will be plenty of good

Vechol Hamaadanim Metzuyin Ke’afar — And there will be as many enjoyable things as the dust!

See Rambam Hilchos Melachim perek Yud-Beis halacha Hey

 
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נפטר ב' מנחם אב ה'תשע"ג

 
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