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Revi'i with Rashi

In today’s Chumash, we learn about some of the Yomim Tovim!

First Hashem reminds us to keep Shabbos. Rashi tells us that the reason why Hashem tells us about Shabbos right before telling us about the Yomim Tovim is to show us that we have to be just as careful to keep Yom Tov as we are to keep Shabbos. Even though Shabbos is holy automatically the way Hashem set it up, and the Yomim Tovim only become holy when the Beis Din decides when Rosh Chodesh should be, they still need to be kept just as carefully.

Now we start to go through the Yomim Tovim, starting with Pesach:

PesachErev Pesach, we bring a Korban Pesach. Then on Tes-Vov Nissan, Pesach starts! It is called Chag Hamatzos, and we only eat matzah (not chometz) all 7 days. The first day and the seventh day are Yom Tov, and we can’t do melacha. Every day of Pesach there is a special korban.

For places outside of Eretz Yisroel, Pesach is eight days. Do you know why?

Korban Haomer — Before we can eat the grain (like wheat or barley) that grows in a field, we need to first bring the Korban Ha’omer. On the second day of Pesach, we bring an Omer (a certain amount) of the new grain to the kohen. The kohen waves the Omer like a Lulav, as a present for Hashem. Along with the Omer of grain, we also bring a sheep as a korban. Then we are allowed to eat from the new grain.

This is called “Chodosh.” There is a machlokes among Chachomim whether this needs to be kept outside of Eretz Yisroel or not.

Sefiras Haomer — Starting from the day we bring the Korban Ha’omer, we need to count 7 weeks (49 days).

Shavuos — On the fiftieth day of our counting is the Yom Tov of Shavuos. We need to bring another special korban: Two loaves of bread (Shtei Halechem), 7 lambs, one bull, and 2 rams! We also need to bring a Yom Tov korban — a goat and two lambs. The kohen has to wave the bread and the two lambs before bringing the korban. On Shavuos we can’t do melacha.

The Torah reminds us again about the Matnos Aniyim, the parts of our fields that belong to the poor: When we pick what grows in our fields, we need to leave one of the corners (Pe’ah) and whatever falls down (Leket) or was forgotten (Shichecha) for the poor people to take!

Rashi tells us that the Torah reminds us about these mitzvos right here, when we learn about the Yom Tov korbanos, to teach us that if someone is careful with these mitzvos it is like they built the Beis Hamikdash and brought korbanos in it!



83 - 87

In today’s Tehillim, in Kapitel Pey-Daled, we have a very special posuk which we learned about in Tanya! “Ki Shemesh UMagen Hashem Elokim!” “Because the name of Hashem and Elokim is like a sun and a cover.”

A mashal for Hashem is the sun, which shines very strong. If the sun shines on us with all of its might, it would make the word too hot! The world can be a place for us to live because there is a cover on the sun, so we can enjoy its light.

The same is with Hashem: The chayus from the name Havaya is so strong that we wouldn’t be able to feel like people — we would all just be part of Hashem. But the name Elokim covers up the name Havaya so the world can keep on being the way we see it.



Likutei Amarim Perek Mem-Ches

Today we are learning more about what we learned yesterday — the two kinds of chayus of Hashem in the world.

Did you ever see a globe? It shows you the whole world, which is shaped like a ball, at one time!

You can close your eyes, and a picture of the whole world can be in your head at the same time! Hashem also knows the whole globe — the whole world. The difference is that we just have a PICTURE in our head. When Hashem knows, He is also making it and giving it chayus!

That chayus, though, is too strong to make the world the way WE see it. So Hashem gives the world another type of chayus. This chayus is what makes each thing in the world different, with the exact amount of chayus so it will look right. The mountain should be big and wide, and the bump in the road should be small. The huge tree and the tiny piece of grass each get just the right amount of chayus. Because this chayus is so hidden, we can see the world the way Hashem wants it, even with our gashmius eyes.

When we know this about Hashem and think about it, it will help us come to love Hashem. IY”H tomorrow we will see why.



Yud-Zayin Iyar

Today is thirty-two days of the Omer!

We don’t say Tachanun in Mincha because tonight is Lag B’omer.

There is a time in the morning that is called “Sof Zeman Kriyas Shema.” This means the latest time to say Shema in the morning to do the mitzvah right. Many people say Shema in the morning BEFORE davening, so they can daven at their regular time (which is sometimes after the time of Kriyas Shema) and not miss the mitzvah of Kriyas Shema in the morning.

When you do this, you should say the words “Ani Hashem Elokeichem,” and then again — “Ani Hashem Elokeichem — Emes.” (This way we will have 248 words in the three paragraphs of Shema, for each of the 248 parts of the body!) But when you say Shema with a different set of Tefillin, like Rabbeinu Tam or Shimusha Raba, you don’t say the words “Ani Hashem Elokeichem” again — you just say once, “Ani Hashem Elokeichem, Emes.”


Once on Lag B’omer (5604), the Tzemach Tzedek taught something from the Baal Shem Tov:

There is a Posuk in Navi (Malachi) that says that Yidden are an “Eretz Chefetz” — a rich land, a land that Hashem wants.

Hashem hid lots of special and important things in the ground — like gold, diamonds, things like oil and coal that help us have electricity and heat, and vitamins that make plants grow. There are so many treasures in the ground, that nobody will ever be able to discover them all!

The Navi compares Yidden to the ground, because we are also full of treasures. Nobody will EVER be able to find all of the special kochos hiding inside every single Yid!

The Baal Shem Tov said, “I want to make sure that Yidden use all of the hidden treasures that are inside of them!”



Mitzvas Asei #96

Today’s mitzvah is the same as yesterday’s, that a body of a dead animal is a strong kind of Tumah (“Av Hatumah”) that can make other people Tomei.



Hilchos Shaar Avos HaTumos

In today’s Rambam, we learn more Avos HaTumah.

Perek Gimmel: This perek teaches us about dead birds, and how they make things Tomei.

Perek Daled: The Rambam explains how bugs and creepy-crawling things make things Tomei.

Perek Hey: This perek teaches us the halachos about Zera — a kind of liquid that makes things Tomei.



Hilchos Ishus - Perek Yud-Beis

In today’s Rambam, we learn about things a husband has to do for his wife. One of them is to make sure she has food to eat and clothes to wear.



Learning Chitas Every Day

One time at a farbrengen, the Rebbe said that there are people who give excuses so they can be free from saying Chitas. They say that it’s too hard or they don’t have enough time.

They should know that they also are making themselves free from getting the brachos from Hashem that come from learning and saying Chitas!

Make sure not to miss out on any of these special brachos — learn Chitas every day!


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Velirushalayim (part two)

In the bracha Velirushalayim in Shemoneh Esrei, we ask Hashem to bring us back to Yerushalayim.

We are also asking Hashem in this bracha to strengthen the Yerushalayim inside each of us.

Yerushalayim is not only a city on the map. It is something inside of every Yid! Tosfos writes that Yerushalayim is made up of two words, “Yirah Shaleim,” complete Yiras Shomayim.

In “Velirushalayim,” we are also asking Hashem to help us reach the highest level of Yiras Shomayim, so we can be Yidden the way Hashem wants us to be. Our Yiras Shomayim will be truly complete when Moshiach comes!

The Rebbe Maharash once said that any time a Yid asks for Yiras Shomayim, Hashem will always give it to him!



How We Put on Our Shoes

Every thing we do, we do in a Torah way. The Torah teaches us exactly how Hashem wants us to act, in every part of our lives!

In Shulchan Aruch, we even learn about how we should put on our shoes:

First, we put on our right shoe, and then our left shoe.

We do this because we know that the Torah gives kavod to the right side, so we give kavod to our right side too. For example, during the Shivas Yemei Hamiluim, the seven days when they prepared the Mishkan to be used, oil was put on the hands and feet of the kohanim. The oil was placed on the right hand and foot first. We see more examples like this in the halachos of a Metzora and with Chalitzah!

If we have shoes with laces that need to be tied, we DON’T tie the right shoe first. We see from the mitzvah of Tefillin that kavod is given to the LEFT side for things that are tied, like Tefillin. So we tie our left shoe before tying our right shoe.

This halacha is also for other clothing. For clothes where we need to put on two of them (like socks) or two sides (like shirt sleeves), we put on the right side first. If we have ties or bows on other parts of our clothes, we tie the left side before tying the right side.

See the Alter Rebbe’s Shulchan Aruch siman Beis, se’if daled

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



Thanking Hashem for Golus!

The Navi Yeshaya said a nevuah that the Geulah will be such an incredible Geulah that we will even be able to understand why the Golus had to be. We will be able to even THANK Hashem for the hard parts of Golus!

וְאָמַרְתָּ בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא אוֹדְךָ ה׳ כִּי אָנַפְתָּ בִּי יָשֹׁב אַפְּךָ וּתְנַחֲמֵנִי

Ve’amarta Bayom Hahu — You will say on the day of the Geulah:

Odcha Hashem Ki Anafta Bi — I will thank You Hashem, for being angry with me and putting me in Golus

Yashov Apcha Usenachameini — At that time, Your anger will go away, and You will comfort me.

Even though now a Yid can’t feel that way, since we are still in Golus, the Navi tells us that when the Geulah happens, we WILL be able to feel it!

See Yeshaya perek Yud-Beis posuk Alef, and Igros Kodesh chelek Yud-Beis p. 414

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