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Parshas Behaalosecha - Shvi'i with Rashi

Hashem punishes the Yidden with the Slav birds. In the next place the Yidden go to, Chatzeiros, Miriam says Lashon Hara about Moshe and she gets Tzoraas. Moshe davens for her to have a Refuah Sheleimah, and after a week she can come back into the place where the Yidden are camped.

The very next day after the Yidden started to travel, on Chof-Alef Iyar, the Yidden who complained about the mahn were punished. Hashem sent tons and tons of a bird called Slav to fly right near them. Moshe Rabbeinu had warned the Yidden that they would die if they ate from this meat, so most Yidden didn’t take any of the birds. But the people that complained about the mahn took HUNDREDS of slav and shechted them!

Some people died right away, and others got sick — but they all kept eating it anyway! They didn’t do teshuvah, and after a month everyone who was eating the slav died. The Yidden called that place “Kivros HaTaavah,” because they buried (Kivros, like Kever) all the people who had the Taavah to eat meat. After this, the Yidden traveled to the next place, Chatzeros.

Moshe always had to be ready to talk to Hashem, so he didn’t stay married to Tziporah.

When his sister Miriam found out, she thought that Moshe decided to do it without asking Hashem, and thought he didn’t make a good decision. But instead of talking to Moshe about it, she told Aharon, and they both talked about how they thought Moshe was not doing the right thing.

The Torah tells us that Moshe was a very humble person, more humble than anyone else! Even Miriam and Aharon didn’t know how special he was. That’s why they thought he did something wrong, but really, HASHEM told him not to stay married.

Hashem told Moshe, Aharon, and Miriam to come to the Mishkan. Hashem told Aharon and Miriam (where Moshe couldn’t hear) that Moshe did do the right thing! Hashem speaks to Moshe “Peh El Peh” — “mouth to mouth” — not only in a dream like most neviim. They shouldn’t have said something not nice about Moshe!

Hashem stopped talking to Aharon and Miriam, and had the cloud give Miriam tzoraas because she said Lashon Hara about Moshe.

Aharon asked Moshe to please daven to Hashem to give Miriam a Refuah Sheleimah. Moshe davened only a few short words, “Keil Nah Refa Nah Lah.” “Hashem, please make her feel better.” He didn’t daven a long time for her, so the Yidden wouldn’t think he only davens a lot for his sister and not the rest of the Yidden.

Hashem told Moshe that Miriam would have to stay outside of the camp of the Yidden for a week. All of the Yidden waited in Chatzeros until the end of the week, when Miriam was better. Then the Yidden traveled to Ritmah.



104 - 105

Today’s kapitelach are Kuf-Daled and Kuf-Hey.

R’ Meir was one of the greatest Tannaim of the Mishna.

His neighbors, though, were not such great tzadikim. They were wild and noisy, and when they started their wild parties, it made it hard for R’ Meir to learn! He was so upset, he once davened that Hashem should get rid of them.

When R’ Meir’s wife, Bruriah, heard this, she reminded him of a posuk from today’s Tehillim:

In the last posuk of Kapitel Kuf-Daled, Dovid Hamelech says: “Yitamu Chata’im Min Ha’aretz, U’reshaim Od Einam — Barchi Nafshi Es Hashem Hallelukah!” “

We usually translate “Yitamu Cha’atim Min Ha’aretz” as “those who do aveiros should be taken away from the world.” But, Bruriah said, the posuk says “Chata’im,” the AVEIROS should be taken away, not “Chotim,” the PEOPLE who do aveiros! Instead of davening for these wild people to go away, R’ Meir should daven for them to do teshuvah!

R’ Meir did what Bruriah said, and davened that his wild neighbors should do teshuvah.

And they did!

See Gemara Brachos daf Yud amud Alef



Shaar Hayichud Veha'emunah Perek Zayin

Yesterday, we learned about Yichudah Ila’ah, and today we are learning about Yichuda Tata’ah!

There are two names of Hashem that we are speaking about here that become united:

1) Sheim Havaya — this is Hashem the way Hashem is ABOVE time and place.

2) Sheim Ad-nay — this is the way Hashem gives chayus to the world, where things do have a set time and a set place.

When both of these join together, that is a Yichud, a connection. Depending on which name of Hashem is the main name, it is Yichudah Ila’ah or Yichudah Tata’ah.

Yichuda Ila’ah is the higher kind of unity, where Sheim Havaya is the main name, and Sheim Ad-nay is botul to it. Yichuda Tata’ah is the lower kind of Yichud. Sheim Havaya comes together with Ad-nay, which means that Elokus gets a set time and a set place.

In our Avodas Hashem, there is also Yichuda Ila’ah and Yichuda Tata’ah!

When our Avodas Hashem is in a way of Yichuda Ila’ah, then when even we’re in time and place (connected to Sheim Ad-nay), we can feel Hashem in a way of Sheim Havaya — higher than time and place. For example, when someone watches a video of a farbrengen today, they might feel like they are really in 770 during the farbrengen!

When our Avodas Hashem is in a way of Yichuda Tata’ah, then even when our main avodah is with Gashmius things that have a time and place, we remember that inside is Elokus which is higher than time and space!

For example, when we say Shema Yisroel, we cover our eyes and try to forget about the world around us and ONLY think about Hashem and His Torah and mitzvos. When we open our eyes and say Baruch Sheim, we see the world around us (which Hashem made with Sheim Ad-nay), but we still remember that it’s connected and one with Hashem Who MADE it and is HIGHER than it — Sheim Havaya.



Chof-Alef Sivan

Today we learn about the koach of Mesiras Nefesh that every Yid has, and where it comes from.

Chassidus teaches how special a Yid is, and the special kochos Hashem gives to our neshamos.

We learned in Tanya about the neshama’s kochos that Hashem gives us so we can learn Torah and have Yiras Shomayim. They are called sechel and midos. They help us feel close to Hashem and act like Hashem wants.

But there’s something even more special than these kochos: The koach of Mesiras Nefesh.

The koach of Mesiras Nefesh makes it that a Yid is never able to act differently than what Hashem wants. “A Yid Nit Er Vil, Un Nit Er Kon Zain Chas Veshalom A Nifrad Fun Elokus!” “A Yid doesn’t want to, and CANNOT be Chas Veshalom separated from Elokus!

This koach comes from the DEEPEST part of our neshama, which is connected to the deepest part of Hashem — to Atzmus Ein Sof, Baruch Hu!



Shiur #313 - Mitzvas Asei #176, Lo Saasei #284, Asei #175

We have started to learn the last Sefer in Rambam! There are 3 mitzvos today, related to the halachos of courts:

1) (Mitzvas Asei #176) This mitzvah is that we need to set up a system that makes sure that Yidden follow the Torah. We need to have Shoftim (judges) and Shotrim (officers to make sure people listen).

In a big city, there should be a “small Sanhedrin,” with 23 judges by the gates of the city. In Yerushalayim, there should be the full Sanhedrin of 70 judges, with a Nasi over them, all together 71. In a city that is too small for a small Sanhedrin, there should at least be a Beis Din of 3 judges to pasken on smaller questions, and send people to a bigger court if needed.

There should also be Shotrim to go around to the marketplace and make sure people are doing business according to Torah.

A judge can only get semicha in Eretz Yisroel, and then he can pasken outside of Eretz Yisroel too. A question about if someone is chayav misa can only be paskened when the Beis Hamikdash is standing.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Shoftim, שֹׁפְטִים וְשֹׁטְרִים תִּתֶּן לְךָ בְּכָל שְׁעָרֶיךָ

The details are explained in Mesechta Sanhedrin.

2) (Mitzvas Lo Saasei #284) This is an aveira for the person in charge of making someone a judge:

A person is fit to be a judge if he is an expert in Torah and its halachos, and acts according to them. It is asur to choose a person to be a judge for any other reasons.

For example, we can’t choose someone as a judge because he is good looking, or because he is strong. We can’t choose someone as a judge because he knows many languages, because he is related to us, or because he did us a favor. Only a judge who is an expert in the chochmah of Torah and follows the mitzvos properly will be able to judge right!

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Devarim: לֹא תַכִּירוּ פָנִים בַּמִּשְׁפָּט

3) (Mitzvas Asei #175) This is a mitzvah about judges, but also a mitzvah about deciding halacha in general.

When Chachomim don’t agree about a halacha, we decide what to do based on what most of the Chachomim say.

When judges disagree, we pasken based on what MOST of the judges think.

This is clear from a posuk in Parshas Mishpatim: אַחֲרֵי רַבִּים לְהַטֹּת

We can find the details of this mitzvah in many places in Mesechta Sanhedrin.



Hilchos Sanhedrin

In today’s Rambam, we learn the first three perakim of Hilchos Sanhedrin.

In Perek Alef, the Rambam teaches about the BIG Sanhedrin with 71 judges, the SMALL Sanhedrin (which should be in most cities) with 23 judges, and in a small city there should be 3 judges. There are halachos about how the Sanhedrin should sit, and about who writes down what happens. When Moshiach comes, we will have a big Sanhedrin again, in the Beis Hamikdash!

In Perek Beis, we learn about who is allowed to be a judge. For a regular judge, there are seven qualifications which are written in the Torah. They are: Chochmah to know the halachos of the Torah well, Yiras Shomayim, to be humble, to hate money, love truth, people should like him, and he should have a good name. The Rambam explains what all of these are, and how we see them in the pesukim when Moshe Rabbeinu chose judges for the Yidden.

The judges in the big Sanhedrin need to have all of these things and many more!

Perek Gimmel talks about when the Sanhedrin should get together to judge. A small Sanhedrin or a Beis Din should start after Shacharis, and stop at chatzos. A big Sanhedrin starts in the morning and ends at Mincha time. A Sanhedrin is not supposed to start judging a case at night.

One halacha is that the big Sanhedrin with 71 judges didn’t always need all of the judges there at the same time, but there have to be at least 23 there always. So if a judge from the big Sanhedrin has to leave, he needs to make sure there will be at least 23 left — otherwise he has to stay!



Hilchos Mamrim - Perek Zayin

In this perek of today’s Rambam we learn about the Ben Sorer Umoreh, a boy who acts in a certain way like a rasha. The Beis Din needs to have him killed so he won’t do more aveiros.

But if you look at the halachos, there are many, many details. If not all of the details are exactly right, he isn’t counted as a Ben Sorer Umoreh! For example, if he ate a meal like a rasha, but it was part of a mitzvah, or part of a different aveira, he is not punished.

There is an opinion in the Gemara that there never WAS a Ben Sorer Umoreh! This is one part of Torah that we learn even if we can never actually do it — and it makes us so close to Hashem —“Drosh Vekabel Schar.”

Mazel Tov! Now we have finished learning the halachos of Mamrim!



Hachana L'Gimmel Tammuz

All of the things we have in Gashmius come to us in the zechus of the Nasi Hador!

When the Yidden were in the Midbar, Hashem gave them everything they needed! The Chachomim tell us that it was in the zechus of their Nasi, Moshe Rabbeinu.

At first, the mohn was in Moshe’s zechus, the Ananei Hakavod (clouds) were in Aharon’s zechus, and the water was in Miriam’s zechus. When Aharon and Miriam passed away, they came back in Moshe’s zechus. Moshe Rabbeinu had the responsibility for all of the Yidden’s Gashmius and Ruchnius needs. As soon as Aharon and Miriam passed away, Moshe Rabbeinu had to make sure that these brachos came back because the Yidden needed them.

The Zohar says that the leader of the Yidden is like the Moshe Rabbeinu of that time!

Just like with Moshe Rabbeinu, the same thing is true about the Rebbe. He doesn’t only teach us Torah and how to serve Hashem, but all of the Gashmius things that Yidden need come to us in the zechus of the Rebbe.

See Sichos Kodesh, Leil Simchas Torah 5718; Gimmel Tammuz Hachana Booklet p. 14


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Hashem's Pride

There can be a Yid that wakes up in the morning and rushes to daven with an early minyan. Even though he is busy all day long, he stops everything and hurries to shul to daven Mincha. He then sits and listens to a shiur in Ein Yaakov until it is time to daven Maariv with the minyan. When he comes home, he shares with his family the Ein Yaakov which he learned.

This makes Hashem very proud!

Hashem gathers all of the malochim and points out this Yid. Hashem tells them: “You, malochim, don’t have to worry about parnasa. You don’t have a family, you don’t have the responsibilities of money, taxes, and other things. This person has a very big achrayus that I gave him. But he does his job in the Gashmius world according to Torah! This makes Me very proud!”

Sefer Hasichos (sichos of the Frierdiker Rebbe) 5699, p. 138



Lashon Hara

In today’s Chumash, we learn about Lashon Hara.

What is Lashon Hara?

Saying something that makes a person look bad is Lashon Hara, even if it is true. For example, saying that a person did an aveira makes it sound like he is not a nice person. That is Lashon Hara, and it is asur to say it, and even asur to think about it if someone tells it to us.

Lashon Hara doesn’t even have to be saying something “bad.” For example, let’s say someone asks us where they can buy good cookies for Shabbos. We answer, “Oh, ask Ploni — he always has cookies.” If we are trying to make Ploni sound like a fresser who is always noshing, that’s Lashon Hara too!

See Kitzur Shulchan Aruch im piskei Admur Hazaken, siman Lamed, se’if Beis and Gimmel

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



Using All of Our Kochos

The Gemara says that before Moshiach comes, there will be very hard times for Yidden. Every day will be harder than the day before…

Why would the Torah tell us something like that? So that we can get into a bad mood? To make us upset or sad Chas Veshalom?

The Rebbe teaches us that the reason why the Torah tells it to us is because before Moshiach comes there will be new special kochos every day — that we can use to overcome the new challenges every day!

The Torah tells it to us so we will realize that when Hashem gives us kochos, they aren’t just a nice thing to have. Hashem gives them to us because we NEED them to overcome the hardships and bring Moshiach! So we have to be very careful to use all of the kochos Hashem gives us as much as we can!

How many times a year did your parents (or grandparents) get to see or hear the Rebbe?

Today, we can watch videos of the Rebbe, hear sichos, and learn from the Rebbe like we were never able to do before! What a special gift Hashem gives to us! But this isn’t just a nice thing — Hashem gives it to us because we NEED it to overcome the challenges of Golus.

What ways were your parents able to spread Yiddishkeit to others before? How many ways can we do it today?

It’s not enough to just use the kochos we had before, since the darkness of Golus gets more as we get closer to Moshiach. We need to use all of the kochos we are given to bring Moshiach now!

See farbrengen Shavuos 5738

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