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CHUMASH

Parshas Eikev - Shvi'i with Rashi

Moshe is still talking to the Yidden, begging them to listen to Hashem so they can have all the brachos!

“If you keep all the mitzvos, and stay close to Hashem (by learning from the Chachomim and Tzadikim), Hashem will send away all of the Goyim from Eretz Yisroel! The WHOLE land will belong to the Yidden!

“Nobody will try to make problems for the Yidden, because Hashem will make them scared of you!”

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TEHILLIM

106 - 107

Today’s kapitelach are Kuf-Vov and Kuf-Zayin.

Kapitel Kuf-Zayin starts with the words “Hodu LaHashem Ki Tov, Ki LeOlam Chasdo!” “Thank Hashem because He is good, His kindness is forever!”

The first word is “Hodu,” which means to thank. But it also means something else! Hodu also means to “admit.”

What are we admitting to?

The Tzemach Tzedek explains that we know that Hashem is creating the world EVERY SECOND and is here inside us EVERY MOMENT. But we don’t see it! So we need to admit that it’s true anyway.

But when Moshiach comes, we won’t have to admit it anymore — we will all be able to see it!

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TANYA

Igeres Hakodesh Siman Zayin

The chayus of Hashem is brought into the world for the Yidden to keep Torah and mitzvos, so the chayus is split up into as many “parts” as there are Yidden!

“Ashreinu Mah Tov Chelkeinu!” “We are so fortunate, our chelek (part) is so good!” In yesterday’s Tanya, the Alter Rebbe showed us that we can ask many questions about the word “Chelkeinu,” our chelek. What is our chelek? Also, the Chachomim use this same word, Chelek, about Hashem. What does it mean that there are separate parts of Hashem?

In today’s Tanya, the Alter Rebbe explains that the Ha’arah, the ray of Hashem that shines in the world, CAN be split up into parts. We also will learn the connection between the chelek of Hashem and the chelek that each Yid has in Torah and mitzvos!

The chayus of Hashem is very strong. If it would all come into the world at once, the world wouldn’t be able to handle it! So Hashem sends the world “pieces” of chayus, through the Torah.

What are these “pieces”? There are 613 main pieces, one for each of the 613 mitzvos! Each of those mitzvos is split up into many parts too, a part for each halacha about that mitzvah. Since the halachos about each mitzvah have no end (Ein Sof), there is also no end to the pieces of chayus that come down into the world!

Since the reason for the creation of the world is so that Yidden can do mitzvos, our neshamos are also split up in the same way! The neshama of Adam Harishon had 613 main “parts,” and from the parts of that neshama came the neshamos of the Avos and the Shevatim and all of the Yidden until Moshiach comes!

Then, in the times of the Geulah, we will see what the Navi Hoshea said in his nevuah, that the Yidden will be too many to count!

So we see that the neshamos of the Yidden are also split up like the chayus of Hashem which comes into the world through the mitzvos: 613 main parts, which are split up into so many that they won’t be able to be counted!

So we see that there is the idea of a “chelek,” a part, both in Elokus (by Hashem), in Torah and mitzvos, and in neshamos of Yidden!

This will help us understand the posuk “Ashreinu, Mah Tov Chelkeinu” — we are so fortunate for the chelek (part) that we have.

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HAYOM YOM

Chof-Beis Menachem Av

In today’s Hayom Yom, we learn about the importance of cleanliness in Avodas Hashem.

Do you say brachos in the morning? You probably know that you need to wash a second Negel Vasser first, but there’s something else you need to wash too — your mouth! The Rebbe Rashab said that we should make sure to rinse out our mouths before brachos every day! (Except on a fast day.)

The Rebbe chose the Hayom Yoms from sichos or letters of the Frierdiker Rebbe. This Hayom Yom comes from a letter that the Frierdiker Rebbe wrote to the hanhala of the Mechinos (Yeshivos) of Tomchei Temimim in Warsaw. In the letter, the Frierdiker Rebbe was telling the hanhala how important it is for the bochurim to have cleanliness.

In the letter, the Frierdiker Rebbe told a story that happened with the Rebbe Rashab, showing how important this is:

The Rebbe Rashab was the Nasi of Tomchei Temimim, but the Frierdiker Rebbe was the Menahel Poel, in charge of running it. The Frierdiker Rebbe would give a report to the Rebbe Rashab every month, and the Rebbe Rashab would give horaos based on the report.

Once there was a Talmid in Tomchei Temimim who had bad breath. He didn’t brush his teeth, and he didn’t go to the dentist. A Mashgiach in the Yeshivah told the bochur to go to the dentist, but he didn’t want to go.

The Mashgiach told the Frierdiker Rebbe, who called in the bochur to speak to him. The Frierdiker Rebbe also told this bochur to go to the dentist, but he still didn’t listen.

A little while later, the Frierdiker Rebbe called him in again, telling him that what he was doing was wrong, and that he needs to get his teeth cleaned. Unfortunately, this bochur still refused to go.

In the next report about Tomchei Temimim, the Frierdiker Rebbe had to also write about this.

The Rebbe Rashab answered this part of the report in writing. The Rebbe Rashab wrote that in the Gemara, it says that bad breath is called a mum when someone wants to get married. It is a very serious thing in halacha! If someone has bad breath that could be fixed, but doesn’t want to do anything about it, that is a real problem. Even though this is a very good bochur, he should be warned that unless he works on fixing this problem, he will not be able to stay in Tomchei Temimim.

The Frierdiker Rebbe called in this bochur and showed him what the Rebbe Rashab wrote. That day, the bochur went to the dentist, and became a normal healthy bochur.

In one of the farbrengens in Tof-Shin-Chof-Hey (the year of aveilus for Rebbetzin Chana), when the Rebbe farbrenged very often, the Rebbe spoke about this letter.

The Rebbe said that even though davening is our neshama connecting to Hashem, our body needs to be clean also! That includes brushing our teeth every day except for Shabbos and Yom Tov.

The Rebbe added that since this is a clear hora’ah from the Rebbeim, the Yetzer Hara will try to stop it! But this is part of our Avodas Hashem — to brush our teeth every day.

See sicha Parshas Mishpatim Tof-Shin-Chof-Hey (Hisvaaduyos)

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SEFER HAMITZVOS

Shiur #48 - Mitzvas Lo Saasei #320

Today we review a mitzvah we learned before (Mitzvas Lo Saasei #320): We are not allowed to do any of the kinds of work called melacha on Shabbos.

In Rambam we are learning about Eiruvin, which is Miderabanan — it doesn’t have a mitzvah from the Torah of its own. Since the time we need an eiruv is on Shabbos, during this set of halachos, we review some of the mitzvos of Shabbos.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Yisro: לֹא תַעֲשֶׂה כָל מְלָאכָה

The details are explained in Mesechta Shabbos.

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RAMBAM

Hilchos Eiruvin

In today’s Rambam, Perakim Gimmel, Daled, and Hey, we are learning about an Eruv, but not the kind of eruv we usually think about — it’s not an Eruv around your backyard!

The kind of Eruv we’re learning about right now is called an Eruv Chatzeiros. It shows that even though there are many families in a certain place, they are joining together as one group. If a few families live in an apartment building, they might need this kind of eruv to carry in the hallways.

How do we make an Eruv Chatzeiros?

Everyone gives some food, and then one person makes a brachaAl Mitzvas Eruv” and then says that everyone can carry things from one person’s house to another.

In today’s third perek we also learn about something called “Shitufei Mevuos.” This means a “partnership for a street.” Cities used to have many streets called a “Mavui.” Each Mavui had a few courtyards, Chatzeiros, and each Chatzer had a few houses inside. The Rambam teaches us how all of the families living on the same Mavui could make themselves partners so they could carry within their own street.

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RAMBAM PEREK ECHOD

Hilchos Terumos - Perek Yud-Beis

We are careful not to make Terumah tamei.

Terumah that is tomei has to be burned. If we’re not sure if it’s tomei, we can’t eat it, but it’s not kavodik to burn it in case it is really tahor! So we leave it alone until it becomes tomei, and then burn it.

Terumah should be given with kavod. Kohanim go to the place where the produce is stored to get the terumah, but don’t help pick it or gather it.

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INYANA D'YOMA

Shtus D'Kedusha

The Rebbe told a story about his father, HoRav HaKadosh R’ Levi Yitzchak Nishmaso Eden (whose yartzeit was on Chof Menachem Av):

It was getting closer to Pesach. In Yekatrinoslav, one of the biggest cities in Ukraine, the government officials knew that soon the Yidden would be looking for matzah.

Back then, the Russian government owned EVERYTHING. Nobody could have their own store, or their own factory, or their own Matzah Bakery. The government would need to arrange for matzah to be baked. Since Yidden would only buy matzah with a hechsher, the government decided to ask HoRav Levi Yitzchak (the Rav in Yekatrinoslav) to say that it was kosher.

HoRav Levi Yitzchak agreed — but when he explained how they would need to make the matzah Shmurah, they didn’t want to follow all of the rules. It would cost the government more money and be complicated to make the matzah properly! They wanted HoRav Levi Yitzchak to give a hechsher even without doing it right. They tried to convince HoRav Levi Yitzchak to agree.

The Russian government in that time would give people very big punishments, even for little things. (This actually happened to HoRav Levi Yitzchak later in his life, and he passed away early because of it.) Everyone had to listen to exactly what they said — or else!

Even though the Russian government was so powerful and so scary, HoRav Levi Yitzchak didn’t think about what would happen. He knew that it wasn’t right to give a hechsher to matzah that wasn’t made exactly the way halacha teaches. He told the government that he did NOT agree!

Really, that would have been enough for HoRav Levi Yitzchak to deserve a huge punishment! How dare he tell the government that he won’t do what they told him to!

But instead of punishing him, they said that they can’t follow all of his rules unless they get permission from the higher officials in Moscow. They sent him there to ask himself.

HoRav Levi Yitzchak traveled to Moscow, and told the government officials there firmly what he needs in oreder to give a hechsher. Amazingly, they agreed to what he said! They wrote an order that all of the mills where they grind the flour for matzah have to follow the rules that Rabbi Schneerson gives — even if it ends up being more expensive for them!

What HoRav Levi Yitzchak did sounds CRAZY! How could he think of not listening to the big scary Russian government?

It WAS crazy — but a good kind of crazy. In Chassidus this is called Shtus D’Kedusha. We can learn from here that we should do what we know the Torah wants us to, and not be scared of what might happen! We can be strong even if it sounds meshugah, because we know we are doing the right thing!

For example, if Mommy asked us if we washed negel vasser in the morning but we forgot, we know we need to tell the truth. We don’t think about what’s going to happen — how we will have to stop eating and go wash negel vasser and Mommy might be upset. We just do what we need to do!

Or, for example, a Tatty who needs to learn Torah and go to a shiur, but is scared that if he goes, he might miss a chance to earn a lot of money. He needs to do what the Torah tells him to, and not worry what could happen!

Or a Mommy who was asked by someone to do a favor, and she does it — not thinking about how she might miss a chance to go shopping and get the things she really wanted to.

It might seem crazy to not do something that’s fun or good for us, but if we are doing what Hashem wants us to, that’s a GOOD kind of crazy! That’s Shtus D’Kedusha, which comes from a very deep part of the neshama. Acting in this way brings us special brachos from Hashem!

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TEFILLAH

Ana B'koach

Another reason why we say Ana B’koach is to hint to another part of the Avodah in the Beis Hamikdash that we didn’t say yet!

We said parts of the Torah about the Terumas Hadeshen, the Korban Tomid, and the Ketores. We mentioned most of the rest of the steps of the Avodah in the paragraph of Abaye.

But there was something else that was done in the Beis Hamikdash every day that we didn’t say anything about here! In the Beis Hamikdash, they said Birchas Kohanim every day. (We did say the words of Birchas Kohanim in brachos, we didn’t say that it is part of the Avodah in the Beis Hamikdash.)

When we say Ana B’koach, we are hinting to Birchas Kohanim!

Ana B’Koach has hinted inside of it Hashem’s holy name. In the Beis Hamikdash, when they said Birchas Kohanim, they said the name of Hashem, the holy Sheim Hameforash! Ana B’Koach hints to that.

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HALACHOS HATZRICHOS

Kavod for the Sefer Torah

We do many things to show our kavod for the Sefer Torah.

One of the things we do is to be melaveh (escort), to go along with the Sefer Torah.

Any person who helped do something with the Sefer Torah while it was out of the Aron Kodesh, should escort the Sefer Torah if he is nearby. He should continue walking with it until it is brought to where it belongs.

For example, the person who did Hagbah (lifting up the open Sefer Torah for everyone to see) should go along with the Sefer Torah, back to the Aron Kodesh. The person who did Gelilah (tying and covering the Sefer Torah) should also go together with the Sefer Torah if it is brought back right away (like in Mincha of Shabbos). The person who opens up the Aron Kodesh when the Torah is being brought out should also go along with the Sefer Torah until it is brought to the Bimah.

IY”H tomorrow we will learn how everyone else in the shul is also melaveh the Sefer Torah.

See Shulchan Aruch siman 149, and Piskei Teshuvos vol. 2, p. 208

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

Believing and Hoping For Moshiach

A Yid has to believe in Moshiach and hope that he will come.

How do we do this? What do we need to know or think to be counted as believing and hoping in Moshiach?

The Torah tells us about many special things that will happen when Moshiach comes, and about the rewards Yidden will get for the mitzvos they did in the times of Golus. But the Rambam tells us that main accomplishment of the coming of Moshiach according to halacha is that we will be able to keep all of the mitzvos of the Torah in the best way.

Based on this, we can understand what our emunah needs to be: That we should have emunah that we will be able to keep all of the mitzvos again, and we hope that it will be very soon!

See Likutei Sichos Chelek Yud-Ches, p.280

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