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Parshas Tetzaveh - Rishon with Rashi

In last week’s parsha we started learning about how Hashem gave Moshe Rabbeinu instructions how to build the Mishkan. Today we learn about lighting the Menorah, and we start to learn about the clothing of the Kohanim.

Hashem tells Moshe about how to make the kind of olive oil we need to use for the menorah: We should only use the oil that comes out when the olive skin is first broken by getting squeezed, before the olives get squashed by something heavy or are ground up.

This is how the Menorah should be lit: The kohen needs to hold the flame close to the wick for enough time to make sure the wick is burning on its own. The kohanim should put in enough oil in the menorah so it will burn all night.

Now Hashem tells Moshe about the clothes the Kohanim should wear — 8 special pieces of clothing for the Kohen Gadol, and 4 for the other Kohanim. Today Hashem tells Moshe about the Efod:

The Efod should be made out of colorful threads like the curtains of the Mishkan will be made out of. It is like an apron that is worn backwards — so it doesn’t cover the Kohen Gadol in the front. The Efod is made with a belt as part of it, and shoulder straps attached to it.

The Yidden should also take two precious stones, and engrave the names of the Shevatim on them — half of the Shevatim on each stone. This way, whenever the Kohen Gadol will go into the Mishkan, Hashem will remember how special the Yidden are!



29 - 34

In today’s Tehillim we have a posuk that says “Hashem Oz Le’amo Yitein, Hashem Yevarech Es Amo Bashalom.” “Hashem gives strength to His nation, Hashem bentches His nation with shalom.”

What exactly is Hashem giving to us? In Torah Shebaal Peh we learn that this posuk is talking about Torah!

The Chachomim explain that Oz (strength) means Torah — Hashem gives us the Torah, which gives us strength.

How does Torah give us strength? When we learn Torah and we know that the words of Torah that we are saying are the words that were said by Moshe Rabbeinu on Har Sinai, and were revealed to us by the tzadikim and Chachomim throughout the generations, we will know we are saying THEIR words! These holy words give strength to our neshama and makes our Yetzer Hara weaker, so we are able to be successful in our shlichus.

See Torah Ohr parshas Yisro



Likutei Amarim Perek Lamed

We are learning about a hisbonenus, a thought process, that we can use when we are not feeling interested in davening with avodah and fighting the Yetzer Hara, like by looking for ways to have iskafya.

The Alter Rebbe gives us an eitza, that we should think about things that make us feel humble.

In today’s Tanya, the Alter Rebbe tells us that even though these humbling thoughts can bring us a moment of sadness, it is okay. This sadness will break the Yetzer Hara’s pride, which is keeping us from doing our Avodas Hashem right.

If we do the hisbonenus properly, these thoughts will not only not make us sad, but they will bring us to have more chayus and serve Hashem the way we should!

But this hisbonenus works best and should be done at certain times: When the Yetzer Hara is stopping us from doing our Avodah properly, or when we’re in a sad mood anyway. That’s a good time to do this hisbonenus, which can help us in many ways.

In fact, by doing this we will be using this mood for a good thing, and then Hashem will take away the feelings which are making us worried or upset!



Hey Adar

The Hayom Yom was written in a year when there were TWO Adars (a Shana Me’uberes). This year we have only one Adar (a Shana Peshutah), so we learn the Hayom Yom for BOTH Adars every day!

Hey Adar Alef

Every Yid is a shliach of Hashem. With Hashgacha Protis, Hashem puts each person where they are in order to clean and purify the world with the words of Torah and Tefillah. This is important for ALL of us to do.

In many places in the Rebbe’s Igros Kodesh, the Rebbe tells people to have a perek of Tanya and a few perakim of Mishnayos that they know by heart, so that in their free time and wherever they are, they will have words of Torah that they can think about and review.

Hey Adar Sheini

A bochur asked the Frierdiker Rebbe in a letter, that since there is so much to learn, maybe he should only focus on learning one thing. The Frierdiker Rebbe explained to him that not only do we need to learn all of these things, but each one helps the other be the way they should be!

A chossid needs to learn Niglah (like Gemara and Shulchan Aruch) because like the Mishna says, “Lo Am Ha’aretz Chossid” — an Am Ha’aretz, an ignorant person, cannot be a chossid. From there we see that it is important to learn Niglah, so we won’t be an Am Ha’aretz!

And a chossid needs to learn Chassidus, which shows his connection with Hashem. Like it says in Zohar, “Eizehu Chossid? Hamis’chased Im Kono,” that a chossid is someone who acts in a way of Chassidus with Hashem. This means that he does mitzvos in a beautiful way, behidur — and to do this, we need to learn Chassidus!

And both of these together bring us to behave like better Yidden, through davening and doing mitzvos behidur, which is the purpose of our learning!



Shiur #209 - Mitzvas Asei #112

Today’s mitzvah (Mitzvas Asei #112) is that if a person has Tzoraas, he needs to show people that he is Tomei, so they don’t become Tomei from him. He needs to rip his clothes, let his hair grow, and cover his face down to his mouth so people know to stay away from him.

This is only for a man who is a Metzora. A woman with Tzoraas, or people with a different kind of tumah also need to let people know that they are tomei, but they don’t have to use these same signs.

We learn this from a posuk in Parshas Tazria:

וְהַצָּרוּעַ אֲשֶׁר בּוֹ הַנֶּגַע בְּגָדָיו יִהְיוּ פְרֻמִים וְרֹאשׁוֹ יִהְיֶה פָרוּעַ וְעַל שָׂפָם יַעְטֶה וְטָמֵא טָמֵא יִקְרָא



Hilchos Tumas Tzoraas

In today’s Rambam, we learn more about Tzoraas.

Perek Hey: In this perek, we learn about Tzoraas on a place where a person was hurt: From a burn, which is called a Michvah, and from other things, which is called Shechin. We also learn about Tzoraas in a bald spot, which is called Karachas or Gabachas, depending on where on the head it is.

Perek Vov: This perek teaches us about when a sign of Tzoraas might not be considered Tzoraas, for example, the bottom of a person’s foot.

Perek Zayin: In this perek, the Rambam teaches us about a person who has Tzoraas that spread all over his entire body, which can make him tahor.



Hilchos Malveh VeLoveh - Perek Hey

In Perek Hey, we learn that it is a mitzvah to charge interest to a goy, but it’s a bigger mitzvah to lend another Yid without interest.

Did you know that even WORDS can be interest? If someone gives you a loan, you have to be careful about thanking him — because those words can make him feel good, and that will be like giving him interest! You also can’t do him any extra favors because of the loan.



Megillas Esther

It says in the Megillah that many goyim decided to become Yidden after the story of Purim, because the fear of the Yidden fell upon them, meaning that they were afraid of the Yidden. “Verabim Me’Amei Ha’aretz Misyahadim, Ki Nafal Pachad Hayehudim Aleihem.”

The simple meaning of the posuk is that they became geirim because they were afraid that the Yidden would kill them for being ready to fulfill Haman’s decree.

But seforim bring another way to explain this posuk, that “the fear of the Yidden” means the Yiras Shomayim that the Yidden have! Their Yiras Shomayim fell upon the goyim, and made them want to change.

There’s a lesson we can learn from this for nowadays too: If we want goyim not to hurt Yidden, but instead to help them, we need to make sure they see our Yiras Shomayim!

When do the goyim see our Yiras Shomayim? Not when we’re in shulgoyim don’t see us when we’re in shul. They see us when we eat, sleep, do business, or walk in the streets! When we act in a way that shows that we know Hashem is with us and watching us, and do things the way that Torah teaches us, that is something everyone can see. When Goyim see that Yiras Shomayim, they realize that it’s something very special, and want to learn from us and help us. Then they will certainly not do anything to cause Yidden any harm chas veshalom.

Based on farbrengen Purim 5718


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We are going through the Seder HaTefillah, the order of davening. We went through some of the main points of Shacharis according to Gemara and Chassidus, and today we will learn a little bit about Mincha.

Yitzchak Avinu was the first to daven Mincha.

Chassidus explains that davening is not only a time to ask for our needs, tefillah is also a time of connecting ourselves with Hashem.

Our koach, and the hatzlacha we have in everything we do, depends on our connection with Hashem.

Every morning, we spend time to make that connection strong, by davening Shacharis. But it slowly becomes weaker during the day because we are busy with Gashmius things. So in the middle of everything we are doing, we stop and daven Mincha.

Even women need to be careful to daven Mincha (at least Shemoneh Esrei) to refresh their connection with Hashem.

That way, we are connected to Hashem the entire day, which brings bracha and hatzlacha in everything we do.

See Likutei Sichos chelek Beis p. 410, Alter Rebbe’s Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim 106:2



Dressing Up On Purim

It is a minhag of Yidden that we dress up on Purim, especially children! One of the reasons we dress up is to remind ourselves about how Hashem was “hiding” in the neis of Purim.

If someone is not wearing a Purim costume, he should wear Shabbos clothes on Purim night.

The Rebbe asked that Yiddishe kinderlach should NOT dress up like Haman, or any other rasha.

One year, the Rebbe said that many children wear crowns on Purim, and “Tavo Aleihem Bracha!” (Those that do it are blessed.)

See Shevach Hamoadim p. 142, Halachos Uminhagei Chabad p. 166, and Chabad.org/1456808

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



Ve'ata Tetzaveh

Our parsha starts off with “Ve’ata Tetzaveh Es Bnei Yisroel,” that Hashem is telling Moshe to command the Yidden, “Veyikchu Eilecha Shemen Zayis Zach, Kasis Lamaor, Lehaalos Ner Tomid,” the Yidden should bring to Moshe pure olive oil, crushed (kosis) for light, to make the light shine constantly.

The Rebbe explains that this posuk can also mean, “You (Moshe) should connect (tetzaveh) the Yidden with Hashem — by making their Emunah strong. Then they will bring to you (Moshe) something that you didn’t have before, a Ruchnius light that comes from their Emunah! This light comes from them being kosis, crushed from being in Golus. And this will shine constantly.”

Just like Moshe Rabbeinu brought out the Emunah in his generation, there is a Moshe Rabbeinu in every generation who helps strengthen the Emunah of the Yidden in his time!

In our time, the Rebbe told us that Moshiach is about to come, and that we will soon be able to see Elokus in this world — the world will be the way it is supposed to be! But right now we don’t see it, and that hurts a Yid very much. The Golus brings out the deepest part of a Yid’s neshama, to ask Hashem to bring Moshiach, and to do whatever we can so it will happen sooner.

This is like what happens when an olive is squeezed (which is what the word “kosis” means). When the olive is squeezed, the oil comes out — the best part! When we feel “squeezed” by the Golus, it also brings out the best part of a Yid, and it makes a difference in everything that we do.

See the Maamar Ve’ata Tetzaveh 5752

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