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לעילוי נשמת ר׳ יוסף בנימין בן ר׳ מנשה קאלטמאנן
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לעילוי נשמת הרה״ח הרה״ת הר׳ משה פינחס בן הר׳ אברהם מרדכי הכהן כ״ץ
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Parshas Ki Savo - Shishi with Rashi

Today’s Chumash is the Tochacha.

This Aliyah is the Tochacha, the things that Moshe Rabbeinu tells the Yidden will happen if they don’t keep the Torah. Our Minhag is not to call anyone up to the Torah for this Aliyah — the person who is reading the Torah takes it himself. You will see that it is a very long Aliyah!

One of the reasons Moshe gives for the things that are written in the Tochacha is “Tachas Asher Lo Avadeta Es Hashem Elokecha Besimcha Uvetuv Levav Merov Kol” — because the Yidden didn’t serve Hashem happily when they have all they need.

The Arizal explains that the posuk means that the reason for the Tochacha is because the Yidden don’t serve Hashem with simcha!

The Alter Rebbe explains in Likutei Torah why a person should get a punishment just because they don’t have simcha. He explains that really, nobody is perfect. For the things they do wrong, they could deserve to get punished. But if a person is happy, it brings simcha in Shomayim too — and simcha takes away the not-good things and punishments!

But if a person is not besimcha, then he is treated the way he deserves, which might include punishments for the things he does wrong. From this we see how important it is to serve Hashem with simcha!

See Likutei Torah parshas Tazria, dibur hamaschil Sos Tasis



90 - 96

Today’s Tehillim is kapitelach Tzadik to Tzadik-Vov. The kapitelach for Chodesh Elul are Nun-Hey, Nun-Vov, and Nun-Zayin.

Many of the Kapitelach in today’s Tehillim are about when Moshiach comes!

Kapitel Tzadik-Hey and Tzadik-Vov are about how we will tell each other to come sing to Hashem and give thanks for His nissim.



Igeres Hakodesh Siman Tes-Vov

The Alter Rebbe is explaining to us that by understanding the ten kochos in our neshama, we can understand a little bit of the Eser Sefiros by Hashem. But before explaining the ten kochos of the neshama which we use only for Avodas Hashem, the Alter Rebbe first explains the ten kochos which we use for everyday things.

Let’s say our Mommy and Tatty are teaching us the first parsha in Chumash. We are learning about how Hashem made the world for a reason — so that Yidden will learn Torah and do mitzvos and bring Moshiach! They want us to understand our special job in the world, and how to do it with lots of chayus!

Our Mommy and Tatty know much more than they can explain to us. They already learned Torah and lived in Hashem’s world for many years. They know a lot because of all that they learned, and from all of the things that happened to them. If they try to tell us EVERYTHING they know, we might get mixed up and not understand anything at all!

So our parents will use the special neshama kochos Hashem gave them. The kochos help them figure out what to tell us, and how to explain it. This way we will love to hear about it, and it will make us excited to live the way Hashem wants!

In today’s Tanya, the Alter Rebbe shows us how, for example, a parent can use each of the natural midos of Chesed, Gevurah, Tiferes, Netzach, Hod, Yesod, and Malchus, to teach something in a way that their child will appreciate it.

For example, a mother will use her midah of Gevurah, holding back, to decide what NOT to say because it will be too complicated for her child to understand.

But all of these midos, which are the way we feel, come from our sechel, the way we think. Our sechel has three parts, Chochma, Bina, and Daas (ChaBaD)! Those are the special kochos we have to THINK and UNDERSTAND.

The more a person understands, the “smarter” his midos (feelings) are! For example, a little baby gets very excited or upset about little things, that older kids already know aren’t a big deal. The more we understand, the more we will care about things that really are important!

So by making sure that our Chabad (and especially our Daas) are the way they should be, we make ALL of our midos stronger and better!

IY”H tomorrow we will learn about how we use the kochos in our neshama to serve Hashem!



Yud-Tes Elul

Today we learn a short “Torah” from the Alter Rebbe for Parshas Netzavim.

When the Alter Rebbe was in Vitebsk, he once said a “Torah” (like a very short maamar) to explain the first two pesukim in the beginning of Parshas Netzavim according to Chassidus.

These pesukim are speaking about how all of the Yidden are standing together to make a promise to keep the mitzvos. The Torah tells us how this includes the leaders, the older people, men, women, and children. At the end of the second posuk, it says “MeiChoteiv Eitzecha Ad Sho’eiv Meimecha” — “from the wood choppers to the water carriers.”

The Alter Rebbe explains that these pesukim are also teaching us how to do our Avodas Hashem better! The word for woodchoppers, “Choteiv Eitzecha,” can also mean to “chop out our ideas,” if we translate the word “eitzecha” as an eitzah, an idea. Instead of just thinking of our OWN ideas of how to live, we need make sure to follow the ideas the Torah tells us!

We also learn a lesson from water carriers: Water makes things grow, including all of the yummy things we like to eat! (Like sugar cane, where sugar comes from!) We need to be water carriers, and take the “water” out — not just to think about what’s yummy for us, but to think about doing our shlichus properly!



Shiur #75 - Mitzvas Lo Saasei #262

In today’s Sefer Hamitzvos, we again learn the mitzvah (Mitzvas Lo Saasei #262) that a man has to do certain things for his wife — two of them are that he has to take care of making sure she has food and clothes.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Mishpatim: שְׁאֵרָהּ כְּסוּתָהּ וְעֹנָתָהּ לֹא יִגְרָע



Hilchos Ishus

In today’s Rambam, Perakim Yud-Zayin, Yud-Ches and Yud-Tes, we are learning many halachos about the Kesuba. The Kesuba promises the wife that if they can’t be married anymore or the husband passes away, the woman will have money and not be stuck without any money to live.

Usually, if a husband passes away, the wife gets the amount written in the Kesuba. But what if the husband owed money to other people, and there’s not enough to give the wife her Kesuba AND to pay back what he owes?

The Rambam tells us that it’s more important to pay back the money the husband owes, even if there is no money left to pay the Kesuba. That’s because the people that loaned him money were expecting to get that back, and if they don’t, that money was wasted. But the wife didn’t get married FOR the money, she got married to have a husband, so even without the Kesuba, she still got what she wanted.



Hilchos Maaser Sheini VeNeta Reva'i - Perek Yud

The dinim of Orlah and Neta Reva’i are very similar. We learn many halachos of Orlah that are the same with Neta Reva’i.



Yom LeChodesh

From Chai Elul, there are 12 days until Rosh Hashana. The Rebbeim tell us that each of these 12 days match up to one of the 12 months of the year! So Chai Elul was Tishrei, and today is for Chodesh Cheshvan.

On each one of these days, we think back to what happened during that month of the year. That way we can do teshuvah for 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.

Cheshvan is the month of “VeYaakov Halach Ledarko,” when we start getting into our regular year-round routine. We take the kochos of the special month of Tishrei and start using them.

Can you think of something you did during Cheshvan last year to start the year off right? Is there something you can do in this coming year so that those things will be even better?

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In the days before Rosh Hashana, starting this Motzei Shabbos, we start to say Selichos, a special tefillah where we ask Hashem to forgive our aveiros and give us a good year.

We say selichos for at least four days before Rosh Hashana. We learn to do this from the halachos about korbanos! Before we bring a korban, starting four days before, we make sure the animal doesn’t have any mum that would keep it from being able to be a korban.

On Rosh Hashana, we make ourselves like a korban before Hashem. From four days before, we search ourselves to make sure we fix any mum we might have. We do this by saying selichos.




We start to say selichos on the Motzei Shabbos before Rosh Hashana. If Rosh Hashana is on Monday or Tuesday, we start a week earlier, so that we will be able to say selichos at least four times. (The way our calendar is set up, Rosh Hashana can never fall on Sunday, Wednesday, or Friday.)

The first of the days of Selichos has a paragraph which speaks about saying selichos in the special time of Motzei Shabbos, “Bimtzoei Menucha.” But we can’t say selichos right away Motzei Shabbos, because Selichos speaks about our aveiros. We are not supposed to say Tachanun, asking for forgiveness for our aveiros, until after Chatzos. So we farbreng or learn until Chatzos, and say Selichos then.

During the other days of Selichos, we try to say Selichos early, because the morning is an eis ratzon, a special time for Hashem to listen to our tefillos.

See Shevach Hamoadim, Rosh Hashana, siman beis

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



Moshiach Will Be Very Humble

The Navi Zechariah tells the Yidden to be happy, because Moshiach is going to come! Even though many kings of the Yidden were not people to respect, Moshiach will be different. He will be a tzadik, and will have won wars. But still, Moshiach will be very humble! He won’t come to Yerushalayim in a fancy chariot, he will come like a simple Yid.

גִּילִי מְאֹד בַּת צִיּוֹן הָרִיעִי בַּת יְרוּשָׁלִַם הִנֵּה מַלְכֵּךְ יָבוֹא לָךְ צַדִּיק וְנוֹשָׁע הוּא עָנִי וְרֹכֵב עַל חֲמוֹר וְעַל עַיִר בֶּן אֲתֹנוֹת

Gili Me’od Bas Tzion, Hari’i Bas Yerushalayim — Be very happy, daughter of Tzion (Yerushalayim)!

Hinei Malkeich Yavo Lach — Here, your king (Moshiach) is coming to you!

Tzadik Venosha Hu — He is a tzadik and successful in war,

Ani Verocheiv Al Chamor, Ve’al Ayir Ben Asonos— He is a humble person, like someone who rides on a donkey

In the Hayom Yom of Rosh Chodesh Menachem Av, we also learned that Moshiach will be very humble. He will learn Torah with the Avos and Moshe Rabbeinu, but at the same time he will learn with even a simple Yid!

See Zechariah perek Tes posuk Tes

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