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Parshas Eikev - Chamishi with Rashi

Moshe is still farbrenging with the Yidden, teaching them how to act, so that they will be successful in Eretz Yisroel.

“Yidden! What does Hashem want from you? To have Yiras Shomayim, so you will do all the mitzvos!

“Think about all of the special things Hashem did for you! The entire world belongs to Hashem. And still, Hashem chose YOU, from all of the nations of the world, to be His special nation!

“You were just 70 people when you went down to Mitzrayim, and now Hashem helped you grow so that you’re as many as the stars of the sky!

“Remember all of the ways Hashem helped you in the Midbar, all of the good things He gave you!

“Now also remember what happened to the Yidden who didn’t listen to Hashem. Make sure to do what Hashem wants, so you will be able to live in Eretz Yisroel for a long time!”

In the introduction to Shaar Hayichud Veha’emunah, the Alter Rebbe says that in this shiur of Chumash, Moshe Rabbeinu was helping the Yidden have the Ahavas Hashem we learn about in Shema! The words of these pesukim give us things to think about which will help us feel a love for Hashem. By thinking about how Hashem runs the entire world, but shows a special love just for the Yidden, we will love Hashem too!



97 - 103

Today’s kapitelach of Tehillim are Tzadik-Zayin to Kuf-Gimmel.

In one of today’s kapitelach, we have a posuk that says “Horiu LaHashem Kol Ha’aretz” — “everyone in the world should sing to Hashem!”

It is brought in Chassidus that the words “Horiu LaHashem Kol Ha’aretz” are the Roshei Teivos of (the first letters spell the word) Halacha!

When we follow Halacha, the way the Aibershter wants things to be, that’s like the world is singing together to Hashem!



Igeres Hakodesh Siman Vov

In the times of the Alter Rebbe, the Chassidim were expected to spend a lot of their time on Avodas Halev, bringing out feelings of Ahava and Yirah through Avodah in Tefillah. In this letter, the Alter Rebbe is telling them that Tzedakah will help them with this Avodah! The Alter Rebbe sent this letter along with the Shluchim who were collecting money for Colel Chabad in Eretz Yisroel.

The Alter Rebbe started telling us how we get a special reward for giving Tzedakah — we get the midah of Emes! Today, we learn why we need this reward and how we get it through giving Tzedakah:

A Yid needs to have Ahavas Hashem and Yiras Hashem. The main way we do this is by using our mind and heart to bring out feelings of love and fear of Hashem.

But there is something that can help our Ahavas Hashem and Yiras Hashem be much stronger! This is when Hashem helps us by giving us a “present” from above. This present is being able to feel some of the Emes of Hashem, the way things really are. Of course, when we have that feeling, our Ahavas Hashem and Yiras Hashem will be able to be felt in a much stronger way.

Now, when does Hashem help a person to feel this strong Ahavas Hashem and Yiras Hashem?

A person starts by connecting to Hashem with HIS emes, and feeling the Rachmonus for the neshama in a true and real way.

But for a person’s emes to actually bring down the “present” of Hashem’s Emes, we need an extra koach!

When a Yid has Rachmanus on another Yid, and gives tzedakah to help him, Hashem connects His emes with that person’s emes. Then the person is able to get that special present of feeling Ahavas Hashem and Yiras Hashem in a true way!

The Alter Rebbe shows that this especially true when we give tzedakah to Eretz Yisroel!



Chof Menachem Av

Today we will learn that the mitzvah of Ahavas Hashem and Yiras Hashem is something that we need to feel in Gashmius!

There are lots of mitzvos we can FEEL: Like when we put on Tefillin, we can feel how the Tefillin are heavy on our head, and the straps are tight around our arm.

Did you know that we need to FEEL Ahavas Hashem and Yiras Hashem too? They are also mitzvos that should be felt in our heart!

What does it feel like to have Ahavas Hashem, to love Hashem?

Imagine that we have a close friend who moved to a different country. We write each other letters, and even sometimes call, but it’s not the same. Then, one day, our friend comes to visit! Even though we might have a lot of things that usually bother us, we are so excited and happy to see our friend that we forget about them! We feel much happier about everything, and are sure that it will all be good.

Our love for Hashem should make us feel that way inside too! We should feel so good that we aren’t worried about things anymore. We are so glad to feel close to Hashem that we are sure everything will be wonderful.

What does it feel like to have YIRAS Hashem, to fear Hashem?

Imagine that we are working on a big project for a big group of important people. All of the sudden, the head of those people comes in to check on how we are doing! We get a shaky feeling inside — are we doing what we should be doing? Will he be happy with what we’ve done?

We can feel our Yiras Hashem in three ways:

1) If we realize that we were doing something wrong, that is called “Yiras HaOnesh,” we are afraid we might be punished from Shomayim.

2) If we feel embarrassed of ourselves and the way we act, that’s called “Yirah Boshes.”

3) Sometimes a person will feel amazed, like the way we feel when we see a huge mountain or waterfall or a sunrise. That’s Yiras HaRomemus — realizing how great and special Hashem is!

When we have Yiras Hashem, it needs to make us feel one of these ways — afraid, ashamed, or awed, knowing that Hashem sees and knows about everything we do.



Shiur #46 - Mitzvas Asei #155

Today’s mitzvah (Mitzvas Asei #155) is the same as yesterday’s — to make Shabbos holy, by saying special things when Shabbos comes in and when Shabbos goes out. We speak about how great and special Shabbos is, and how it is different than the days before and after it.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Yisro (one of the Aseres Hadibros): זָכוֹר אֶת יוֹם הַשַּׁבָּת לְקַדְּשׁוֹ

The posuk means, “Remember Shabbos to keep it holy.”

Torah Shebaal Peh explains what this mitzvah is. The Mechilta, the Midrash of halacha, explains that this means to make a bracha. In Gemara, the Chachomim tell us that to make this bracha over a cup of wine. The Gemara says we should make a bracha when Shabbos ends as well, to separate it from the rest of the days.

That’s why we keep this mitzvah by making Kiddush and Havdalah!

The halachos of how to keep this mitzvah are discussed in the end of Gemara Pesachim, and in many places in Mesechta Brachos and Mesechta Shabbos.



Hilchos Shabbos

In today’s Rambam, we learn the halachos of the Techum Shabbos, how far we are allowed to walk on Shabbos. We also learn the halachos of making Kiddush and Havdalah.

Perek Chof-Zayin: In this perek, we learn how far the Techum Shabbos is. According to the Torah, you are allowed to go 12 mil, because this is how big the camp of the Yidden was when they got this mitzvah. Moshe Rabbeinu told them not to go out past this camp, so we understand that the Techum Shabbos must be 12 mil. The Chachomim said, though, that we shouldn’t go out even 1 mil past the city, which is 2,000 amos.

We also learn what happens if a person does go out past the Techum — it is asur for him to go in any direction until after Shabbos!

Perek Chof-Ches: We learn how to measure the Techum of a city.

Perek Chof-Tes: In this perek, we learn the halachos of Kiddush and Havdalah, which is today’s mitzvah in Sefer Hamitzvos! We learn what kind of wine to use for Kiddush, and that we need to make Kiddush in connection with a meal (“Kiddush Bemakom Seudah”). The Rambam also tells us why we need to have besamim in Havdalah: Because the neshama is sad that Shabbos is over, so we make it happier by giving it something good to smell.



Hilchos Terumos - Perek Yud

What happens if a person ate Terumah by mistake when he wasn’t allowed to? Usually the halacha is that he has to pay back for what he ate, PLUS an extra fifth. We also learn about the halachos of what happens if someone stole Terumah.



Chof Av

Today is a special day on the Chassidishe calendar — it is the yartzeit of the Rebbe’s father, R’ Levi Yitzchak.

The Rebbe’s father was the Rav in Yekatrinoslav. Because he didn’t stop teaching Torah and mitzvos to the Yidden, the government punished him by sending him far away to a small town called Chi’ili.

Even while in Golus, R’ Levik continued to write down words of Torah, like explanations to the Zohar. There was no way to buy paper in Ch’ili, so R’ Levik wrote in the white spaces around the words of the few seforim that the government allowed him to take with him. There was no ink in Ch’ili either, so the Rebbe’s mother, Rebbetzin Chana, boiled different grasses and flowers to make ink for him to use. Since each batch of ink had different grasses, you can see that the words in R’ Levik’s seforim are written with many different colors!

Some Chassidim paid a lot of money for R’ Levik to be able to go to a bigger city where he could be warmer, but he was very sick and passed away there, in Alma Ata.

R’ Levi Yitzchak had Mesiras Nefesh in Russia to spread Yiddishkeit. Because of this, he passed away at a young age.

We can learn from the Rebbe’s father to have Mesiras Nefesh also, making sure that we help all of the Yidden who don’t know about Torah and mitzvos yet — with all of our chayus!

Many of his Chiddushei Torah we STILL don’t have — they are probably somewhere in Russia. The Rebbe said that if we make a hachlata to learn these Chiddushei Torah as soon as they are found, Hashem will help that we will find them faster!

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The paragraph of Abayei comes from the Gemara, Mesechta Yoma. It speaks about how the Amora, Abayei, would review the steps of the entire daily Avodah in the Beis Hamikdash in order, based on the teachings of Abba Shaul.

Even though the halacha (the way it will be done in the Beis Hamikdash Hashlishi) is different, we still say it the way Abba Shaul taught it.

Meforshim explain why we still choose to say it in this way, and in a sicha the Rebbe explains why it is done this way according to Chassidus — because the order of the Avodah in this paragraph fits more according to the avodah of Yidden in the time of Golus.

See Sefer Hasichos 5752, p. 419 and footnotes there



Kissing the Sefer Torah

There are many halachos that we do to show kavod and love for the Sefer Torah. One way is by kissing the Sefer Torah when it is carried past us in shul.

There is a minhag brought in Shulchan Aruch that when the Sefer Torah comes out in shul, we should especially bring children to come and kiss it. This will help in their chinuch and get them excited to do mitzvos!

See Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim siman 149

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



Feeling Better from the Churban

The Navi Hoshea warned the Yidden of his time about the Churban, if they wouldn’t do teshuvah. But he also reminded them that Hashem always loves the Yidden, and that we would see that in the times of the Geulah.

The Navi told the Yidden that even though the first and second Beis Hamikdash would be destroyed, Hashem would build a third one in the times of the Geulah. Then the Yidden would feel better from the Churban:

יְחַיֵּינוּ מִיֹּמָיִם בַּיּוֹם הַשְּׁלִישִׁי יְקִמֵנוּ וְנִחְיֶה לְפָנָיו

Yechayeinu Miyomayim — Hashem will make us feel better again from the two days (from the two times the Beis Hamikdash were destroyed)

Bayom Hashlishi Yekimeinu — On the third day (when the third Beis Hamikdash will be built), He will help us get up

Venichyeh Lefanav — And we will live in front of Hashem.

See Hoshea perek Vov posuk Beis

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