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Parshas Ki Savo - Revi'i with Rashi

In today’s Chumash, Moshe Rabbeinu gives the Yidden instructions for the day they cross the Yardein and go into Eretz Yisroel.

Moshe Rabbeinu, together with the Zekeinim, tell the Yidden that they need to be careful to keep the Torah!

Yidden need to “guard” the Mitzvos, by learning about them and making sure they won’t forget!

Since this is so important, the Yidden will need to do something that will remind them about this important job, right when they come to Eretz Yisroel.

When the Yidden cross the Yarden, they will take 12 stones out of the river. They will take these stones to Har Grizim and Har Eival, where the Kohanim will remind the Yidden what happens if they chas veshalom don’t keep the Torah.

The Yidden will build a Mizbeiach with these big stones, by covering them with a kind of cement so they will stick together. It had to be built this way because we aren’t allowed to use any metal to cut rocks to build a Mizbeiach. Instead, we stick rocks together to fit.

They will write words of Torah on these stones, translated into 70 languages! Then they will bring Korbanos to Hashem on this Mizbeiach.

Now Moshe reminds the Yidden:

Listen carefully! See how much Hashem wants you to always be close to him.

Usually, when a person starts something new they are excited! But later on, they get a little bit bored and they aren’t so careful about it anymore. But the Yidden should feel like (and act like!) they are promising Hashem to be His nation for the very first time, every day!

So keep all of the mitzvos Hashem asks you to do.



83 - 87

Today’s Tehillim is kapitelach Pey-Gimmel to Pey-Zayin. For Elul we also say kapitelach Mem-Tes, Nun, and Nun-Alef.

Every single kapitel in today’s Tehillim has a special niggun which was made in honor of the Rebbe’s Yom Huledes! Can you find the niggun in each one?

In Kapitel Pey-Daled, the posuk says “Yeilchu Mechayil El Choyil, Yeiro’eh El Elokim BeTzion.” This means that people who trust in Hashem go from strength to strength, and they go before Hashem in Yerushalayim.

The Rebbe tells us that Yeilchu Meichayil El Choyil, when we are always doing better than before, brings Yeiro’eh El Elokim Betzion, that we will be able to go to the Beis Hamikdosh! When we keep trying to do better, every single day and every single hour, we will bring Moshiach!

Chassidus says that there is a new chayus from Hashem that comes into the world, not just every day, but every hour! When that chayus comes, we get more opportunities to grow in Yiddishkeit! We need to make sure to use that new energy to do more!



Igeres Hakodesh Siman Tes-Vov

One very important thing we learn about in Kabbalah is called the Eser Sefiros. In this letter, the Alter Rebbe will help us understand the Eser Sefiros, by learning about OUR neshamos! Because our neshamos are part of Hashem, they also have the Eser Sefiros.

When we learn about Ruchnius, like the Eser Sefiros, we are not learning abut something that is separate from us. We are also learning about these levels in Ruchnius the way they are in our neshama!

From this we can also understand that even when we learn very Ruchnius’dike things in Chassidus, we shouldn’t think that they have nothing to do with us! The neshama that Hashem put into us is connected to all of these madreigos.



Yud-Zayin Elul

In the Chumash of Friday in Parshas Ki Savo, we read “The Tochacha.” It is where Moshe tells the Yidden all of the not-good things that can happen to the Yidden if they chas veshalom don’t keep the mitzvos.

In today’s Hayom Yom, the Rebbe tells us that these Klalos, which seem like curses, really have hidden brachos inside of them!

The Alter Rebbe was the Baal Koreh in his shul in Liozna. Once, though, in the week of Parshas Ki Savo he was traveling, and someone else leined the Torah.

The Mitteler Rebbe, who wasn’t Bar Mitzvah yet, was in Shul. When he heard the Kriyas HaTorah, with the very scary words of the Tochacha, it made him feel very upset! He got so sick from hearing it, that the Alter Rebbe was worried that he wouldn’t be able to fast on Yom Kippur, a few weeks later!

Someone asked the Mitteler Rebbe why he got so upset when he heard the Tochacha. It wasn’t his first time hearing it — we lein this parsha every year!

The Mitteler Rebbe answered, “When my father (the Alter Rebbe) leins the Tochacha, I don’t hear not good things — I hear the brachos hiding inside!”

In Chassidus, the Alter Rebbe teaches us the pnimius — the way things REALLY are, even though we don’t see them that way. When we learn Chassidus, we will be able to see how EVERYTHING is really a bracha!



Shiur #73 - Mitzvas Lo Saasei #355

In today’s Sefer Hamitzvos we learn the same mitzvah as yesterday again (Mitzvas Lo Saasei #355) — that a person is not allowed to act like he is married to a woman without first doing the mitzvah of Kiddushin, getting married according to Torah.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Ki Seitzei: לֹא תִהְיֶה קְדֵשָׁה מִבְּנוֹת יִשְׂרָאֵל

The details are explained in Mesechta Kesubos and Kiddushin.



Hilchos Ishus

In today’s Rambam, we learn about things a husband has to do for his wife. One halacha is that he has to buy her new clothes every year.

We also learn about moving: One halacha is that if the husband says that the neighbors are not good people, he can make his wife move even if she doesn’t want to. And the same is for her — if she thinks the neighbors aren’t good people, she can make them both move away.



Hilchos Maaser Sheini VeNeta Reva'i - Perek Chese

Some things DON’T have the kedusha of Maaser Sheini, like the shells of nuts or the container that the wine came in. We also learn about how to use the money to buy food in Yerushalayim.




Tonight is Chai Elul!

From Chai Elul, there are twelve days until Rosh Hashana. The Rebbeim tell us that each of these 12 days match up to one of the twelve months of the year that we should do teshuvah for!

So on Chai Elul we look back at Chodesh Tishrei, on Yud-Tes Elul we look back at Chodesh Cheshvan, and so on.

How do we do teshuvah for that month?

We think back to what happened during that month of the year. That way we can think about anything that happened during that month and make good hachlatos that this month in the coming year will be better. We should think about the hachlatos we made during that month, and see if we are keeping up with what we decided to do.

So pick a time for the next 12 days, maybe before Kriyas Shema She’al Hamitah, to think back to that month and make sure that next year will be even better!

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Tefillos of Yomim Noraim

The ten days of Rosh Hashana through Yom Kippur are very important days. During this time, called the Aseres Yemei Teshuvah, Hashem decides about what the year will be like for the whole world!

During the Aseres Yemei Teshuvah, Hashem shows us that He is the King of the entire world.

When we speak to Hashem in davening in these special days, we say some things differently to show that we are speaking to Hashem as King, and we ask Him to bentch us with a good year.

In the third and eleventh brachos of Shemoneh Esrei, we change how we speak about Hashem:

- Usually, we say “HaKel Hakadosh,” the holy Aibershter. During the Aseres Yemei Teshuvah, we say “HaMelech HaKadosh,” the holy King.

- At the end of the bracha of “Hoshiva Shofteinu,” we usually say “Melech Ohev Tzedakah Umishpat,” that Hashem is a King Who loves tzedakah and justice. During the Aseres Yemei Teshuvah, we say “HaMelech Hamishpat,” the King Who judges fairly.

In the first and last two brachos of Shemoneh Esrei, we add 4 pieces to davening asking for a good year:

1) Zochreinu Lechaim (in the first bracha)
2) Mi Chamocha (in the second bracha)
3) Uchesov (in Modim)
4) Uvesefer Chaim (in Sim Shalom)

Like a person usually does when asking, we ask for something smaller first, then for something bigger. In the first two lines, we ask Hashem to remember us for life. Then in the next two lines, we ask for more — that Hashem should write us down for a GOOD life.

See the Alter Rebbe’s Shulchan Aruch, siman Tof-Kuf-Pey-Beis



Forgetting in Davening of Aseres Yemei Teshuvah

The changes we make in Shemoneh Esrei during the Aseres Yemei Teshuvah are very important. Hashem’s relationship to the world is different during this time, and we need to show that when we speak to Him privately in davening. Hashem is always the King of the world, but now that inyan is the MAIN way we connect to Him.

If a person forgets to say HaMelech Hakadosh (the holy King) instead of HaKeil Hakadosh (the holy Aibershter), he needs to go back and say the bracha again. But because the first three brachos of Shemoneh Esrei are all connected, like one long bracha of praising Hashem, he needs to go back to the beginning of the whole Shemoneh Esrei. (If he remembers right away, before a few seconds pass, he can just say the right words then.)

If a person wasn’t paying attention, he probably said it the way he is used to davening, with HaKeil Hakadosh. If he can’t remember if he said it right, the halacha is that he probably didn’t. He also needs to go back to the beginning of Shemoneh Esrei.

Forgetting Hamelech Hamishpat has a different halacha. Since even during the year we speak about Hashem as a Melech (Melech Ohev Tzedakah Umishpat), if a person forgets to say the words Hamelech Hamishpat instead, he doesn’t need to go back. Still, because there are some opinions that we shouldn’t mention tzedakah during the Aseres Yemei Teshuvah, it is best for him to daven another Shemoneh Esrei afterwards as a nedavah (a present to Hashem).

All the other lines in Shemoneh Esrei were added by the Geonim, after the times of the Gemara. If a person forgot to add them, he doesn’t need to go back. But if he remembers before finishing the bracha they are said in, he can say them in the place he remembers.

See Shevach Hamoadim Kitzur Hilchos Yomim Noraim siman Vov

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



Always Hashem's Special Nation

When Moshiach comes, EVERYONE in the world will serve Hashem. But still, the Yidden will be Hashem’s special nation! The world will be full of brachos, but there will be special brachos just for the Yidden!

וְנִלְווּ גוֹיִם רַבִּים אֶל ה׳ בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא וְהָיוּ לִי לְעָם וְשָׁכַנְתִּי בְתוֹכֵךְ וְיָדַעַתְּ כִּי ה׳ צְבָאוֹת שְׁלָחַנִי אֵלָיִךְ

Venilvu Goyim Rabim El Hashem — And many nations will join the Yidden in serving Hashem

Bayom Hahu — On that day of Geulah.

But, Hashem says:

Vehayu Li Le’am — “The Yidden will always be My special nation

Veshachanti Vesocheich — And I will rest only among you.”

Veyadat — And you will know

Ki Hashem Tzva’os Shelachani Eilecha — That Hashem sent the Navi with special nevuos for the Yidden!

See Zechariah perek Beis posuk Tes-Vov

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