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Volume 07 : Number 100

Sunday, September 16 2001

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Thu, 13 Sep 2001 15:38:49 EDT
From: Yzkd@aol.com
(no subject)

In a message dated 9/10/01 5:18:44pm EDT, sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu writes:
> Nu Rabbosai, I am sure many of you have more to say on the use of
> "V'omeir" vs. v'omar" and the use of "zu" in the next, the first long and
> famous Rashi....

LAN"D there are 3 differences:

1) V'omeir vs. v'omar.
2) Mkudeshes vs. Hiskadshi
3) B'biah Zu vs. nothing

They all could be answered, that being talking at the time of Tashmish is
prohibited, hence it cannot be Vomeir, at the time of the act that
accomplishes the Kidushin, rather before then, therefore also from
"Mkudeshes" in the present, it becomes "Hiskadshi" in the future, likewise
there is need to emphasize B'biah Zu.

Kol Tuv,
Yitzchok Zirkind

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Date: Thu, 13 Sep 2001 18:49:24 EDT
From: Zeliglaw@aol.com
Fwd: A Letter from the Rashei Yeshiva

Divrei Chizuk and nechama from the Gush for all of us.
            Steve Brizel

                   YESHIVAT HAR ETZION
            A Letter from the Rashei Yeshiva


Dear Friends, Achim le-tzara,

To the verbal and pictorial tidal wave which has engulfed us since
Tuesday's cataclysm, there is little one can - and possibly, should -
add. And yet, upon reflection, I find the suggestion that I set down
some brief thoughts, to be sent to a Har Etzion constituency to whom
they might be meaningful, striking a positive chord. I have no illusion
about having anything novel to present. Indeed, in the context of the
tragedy and under the impact of its enormity, I should regard the quest
for expressive novelty as debasing, as bordering on desecration of the
calamity and the memory of the stricken. All I can and seek to offer,
as a shaliach tzibbur, is an encapsulated rendering of a Jewish and
Israeli response, as experienced and expressed within the enclaves of
a beit midrash in the Judean Hills.

At the most basic plane, "thoughts" is of course wide of the mark.
Numbing pain, chilling sorrow, gnawing anxiety - all gripping us
viscerally rather than cerebrally - obviously comprise our immediate
human response. And yet, if our feelings can be communicated at all,
we cannot but have recourse to the medium of ideas.

To speak of a Jewish response is not to negate the universal aspect.
Commiseration with human suffering as such is endemic to our tradition,
expressed, as the Rambam stated (Hilkhot Melakhim 10:12), in key verses:

   "For it is written, 'God is good to all, and His mercies are upon all
   His creatures' (Psalms 145:9), and, 'Her ways are ways of pleasantness
   and all her paths are peace' (Proverbs 3:17)."

And presumably, when the tragedy is of such staggering proportions,
even the most clannish among us are genuinely grieved. Nevertheless,
one can, at this dark hour, discern a specifically Jewish and Israeli
response; and this in, primarily, three respects.

The first concerns the locus of the tragedy. New York and its environs is
the epicenter of Diaspora Jewry - both demographically and spiritually,
by far the largest and most powerful focus of Jewish life in the
Golah. Hence, whatever our universal commitment, it is only natural
that we are doubly gripped, ethnically and ethically, by its particular

The second likewise concerns the locus of the catastrophe, but very
differently conceived. Our empathy for the victims and their families
would be acute even if the World Trade Center or the Pentagon had been
demolished by an earthquake. In fact, however, they were attacked by evil
incarnate, out of hatred for the United States and what it represents;
and, quite apart from the revulsion engendered by bestial inhumanity, that
element is inexorably related to the Jewish connection. Broadly speaking,
the attacks were conceived and executed as part of an Islamic onslaught
against the West, in general, and Christianity, in particular. Patently,
however, America's sustained support of Israel and its identification with
many of its causes and values was a critical factor, which, for us, adds
a significant dimension to the tragedy. Rishonim asserted that a person
who is killed by our enemies simply because he is Jewish is regarded as
having died "al kiddush Hashem," in sanctification of God's Name, even if
he never chose martyrdom and, possibly, is not even a believer. We may
reasonably state, analogously, that a country which is attacked because
of its support for the Jewish people and its state is likewise credited
as having suffered while being engaged in the Ribbono Shel Olam's cause.

What that status, objectively, entails is not for us to surmise. We can,
however, subjectively attest to the impact that the Jewish connection has,
and should have, upon ourselves. These frightful days have rekindled our
sense of what the United States, historically and currently, has been. I
speak not only of its present position of global leadership but of its
inherent character and agenda. There is, surely, much to criticize
in American culture - aspects of materialism, rugged individualism,
crassness, shallowness if not vulgarity; and there is truth to some of
Solzhenytsin's strictures decrying the lack of spirituality. None of this,
however, should obscure the fact that, more than any other major modern
country, it has been, collectively, a prime champion of Avraham Avinu's
two principal causes: monotheistic faith (emunah) and generousity -
hesed. We have felt anew appreciation, as both awareness and gratitude,
of that commitment's having redounded to the benefit of Jewry; and that
appreciation has deepened our sorrow and sharpened our anxiety.

Finally, our response is Jewish insofar as it is grounded in Jewish roots
regarding relation to suffering in general. I hesitate to speak blandly
(in what could indeed be universal religious categories) of the uses of
adversity or the merit of acceptance, lest seemingly cliched religious
sensibility be misconstrued as glib insensitivity; and the last thing we
might countenance is a facile and remote tsidduk ha-din for the tragedy
of others. Surely, however, we ought follow the Rav's counsel: It is
not for us to explain suffering but rather to cope with it, morally
and religiously, our mettle and our faith being tested, steeled, and
humbled within its crucible. We look to the Ribbono Shel Olam for solace
and surcease, even as we prayerfully determine to make His cause ours,
even as we strive, in purgation and repentance, to ennoble our spiritual
self. We are driven to recognize the full force of the midrash which,
while commenting on a verse addressed, in its direct context, to knesset
Israel, nevertheless has clear universal import:

   "'I, even I, am He that comforts you' (Isaiah 51:12) - Rabbi Shimon
   ben Gamliel said: It is the way of a father to have mercy, as it
   is written, 'As a father has mercy on his children;' and it is the
   way of a mother to console, as it is written, 'As one whose mother
   consoles him.' The Holy One, blessed be He, said: I act as father
   and mother." (Yalkut Shimoni, 474)

Particularly, in these days of judgment and mercy, as we fuse prayer
for the redemptive epiphany of "Melokh al kol ha-olam bi-khevodekha,
ve-hinase al kol ha-aretz bi-yekarekha" - "Reign over the entire world
in Your glory, and be exalted over all the earth in Your grandeur" -
with the quest for personal and collective teshuvah, we share in the
searing grief and in the yearning for rehabilitation.

   "For the enemy has persecuted my soul; he has trodden my life down
   into the ground; he has made me to dwell in darkness, as those that
   have been long dead ... I stretch forth my hands to You; my soul
   thirsts after You, like a thirsty land. Answer me speedily, O Lord;
   my spirit fails; do not hide Your face from me, lest I be like those
   who go down into the pit. Cause me to hear Your words of steadfast
   love in the morning, for in You do I trust; cause me to know the way
   in which I should walk, for I lift up my soul to You ... Teach me to
   do Your will, for You are my God; let Your gracious spirit lead me
   on level ground." (Psalms 143)

                   With best wishes for personal and collective ketiva
                   va-chatima tova for a year of life and peace,

                   Aharon Lichtenstein

To our brothers and sisters in the United States, and to their relatives
in Israel and elsewhere, may God bless you from Zion:

During this most difficult and tragic hour, we are all a single family,
Jews and gentiles alike - all the nations of the world. All nations,
that is, with the exception of those who removed themselves from the
community of mankind and destroyed the image of God with which they were
created. They destroyed it to the point of non-recognition, and became
like beasts of prey.

My heart - and all of our hearts - is with the many victims, Jews and
non-Jews; my heart, and all of our hearts, goes out to the families who,
in a matter of seconds, lost their loved ones.

"O Lord God of retribution, O God of retribution - appear!" (Psalms 94:.
Avenge the blood of Your creatures who were murdered so cruelly.

Dear brothers and sisters, we know that the villains who attacked New
York and Washington, killing thousands of people whom they considered
infidels, intended also to undermine Western culture, which is based on
principles originating in the Torah and in the words of the prophets. We
are confident that the United States will very soon recover from the
devastating blow it suffered and show wisdom, stamina and strength in
its war against these despicable forces.

I would like to emphasize an additional point. From the time of our
forefather Abraham, the Nation of Israel has been dedicated to sanctifying
God's Name in the world. As members of this nation, we cannot ignore the
appalling "chillul Hashem," the desecration of God's Name that occurred
before the entire world. These evil people murdered in the name of our
God, the Lord of the universe; they killed thousands in their fanatical
and cruel belief that they were carrying out God's will. As we rend our
garments as a sign of bereavement for the victims, we must tear them
as well for the terrible chillul Hashem that has occurred. We also
plead with the Almighty: Look and see what these wicked people have
done to us and what they have done to Your great and sacred Name! "You,
our God - cast them down to the nethermost pit, for they are murderous,
treacherous men," as King David writes in his Psalms (55:24).

The Talmud (Shabbat 77b) describes five fears that exist in the world,
including the elephant's fear of the mosquito. A mosquito can cause
the elephant pain, but it can never overcome or even debilitate it.
The People of Israel sense deep feelings of friendship towards the United
States for all it has done for the Jews and the State of Israel. We
are confident that, please God, America will claim its leadership role,
with even greater vigor, as a world power.

In the Days of Awe soon to be upon us, we pray, "Instill Your fear
within all Your beings, and Your Awe within all that You created;
and all beings will fear You, and all creatures will bow before You."
I believe that the free Western world must, during this time, do some
soulsearching as well. It must examine itself to see whether it had an
exaggerated sense of self- confidence as a result of its technological
strength and scientific achievements. Western society sometimes projected
a sense that we can manage without divine assistance. It now turns out
that the world, even in our time, needs God's grace.

We are reminded of Isaiah's prophecy (2:12-17):

     "For the day of the Lord of Hosts shall be upon all that is proud and
     arrogant, against all that is lofty - that it shall be brought low:
     Against all the cedars of Lebanon, tall and stately, and all the
     oaks of Bashan; against all the high mountains and all the lofty
     hills; against every soaring tower and every mighty wall; against
     all the ships of Tarshish and all the gallant barks.
     Then the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down
     And the pride of men shall be made low;
     And the Lord alone shall be exalted on that day."

Since time immemorial we pray on Rosh Ha-shana on behalf of the Jewish
People and on behalf of all nations: "All inhabitants of the world pass
before Him like sheep."

This year, as we stand in prayer on the Days of Awe, we hope to intensify
our prayers for peace upon all of us.

We will pray for our well-being here, in the Holy Land, where over the
course of the past year we have found ourselves engaged in a difficult

We will pray for the well-being of our Jewish brethren, wherever they are.

We will pray for the well-being of the entire world.

We will pray for the well-being of the many wounded, that the Almighty
shall grant them a complete recovery from the heavens.

                           May   you  be  inscribed   and
                           sealed for a good year,
                           Yehuda Amital

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Date: Thu, 13 Sep 2001 15:20:07 EDT
From: Yzkd@aol.com
Re: Haben yaqir li Ephraim

In a message dated 9/13/01 10:12:13am ED, micha@aishdas.org writes:
> I woke up with this pasuk stuck in my head. As I do not believe that I

It is a Geder of Nvuah Ktana, glad to see you back, Efrayim was called 
because of "Hifrani...Beretz Onyee (interesting enough it was the Bnei 
Efrayim that left MItzrayim first VK"M) "Kasher Yanu Oisoi Kein Yirbeh", the 
Haficha of negative to positive, (which is why Ochiv Hakoton Yigdal more then 
Menashe, which was just "Nashani" making forget not reversing, and here again 
Yehoshua (Zaroi Tihye Mloi Hagoyim) was the Machnis, may we all be Zoche to a 
Zchira Ltova, to the Pokod Pokaditi of the Gula Shleima.

Kol Tuv, 
Yitzchok Zirkind

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Date: Thu, 13 Sep 2001 23:39:34 -0400
From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@juno.com>

I just came from the asifa which I posted about.

There were probably over 5000 people there, and the MC mentioned that
there were hookups to 30 cities (anyone hear about this?), put together
within 24 hours and with Agudah not being able to access their offices.

I came too late to hear Rabbi Breuer (subway travel in NYC has NOT
returned to normal by any stretch) but I did hear Rav Matisyahu Solomon.
Rashei perakim:

He mentioned the tefila of vechen ten pachdecha. He said that the
pachdecha has already occurred with the incidents this week, and it is
up to us to convert that pachad to veyira'ucha kol hama'asim, and that
the first step was veya'asu kulam agudah echas. He did NOT mean anything
political, he went into some detail about forgiving and forgetting petty
issues among people, not temporarily but permanently.

He mentioned the aguna sheilos which will arise from these incidents,
and connected it to the insensitivity shown by those who are responsible
for the aguna situation heretofore.

One main point that he came back to several times, was that we don't
need a navi to interpret the events of this week. It is not hard for
us to see the WTC as the symbol of wealth and the Pentagon as that of
military might. He said that the RBSh"O is telling us, lo vechail velo
vechoach ki im beruchi. The wealth and power are not what will deliver
us, as this week clearly showed, and our response is to increase our
"beruchi" and make that the focus and purpose of our lives.

He then explained the Rashi in Ha'azinu about kenesher ya'ir kino, how
the nesher makes a lot of noise, from tree to tree and branch to branch,
to warn its young of its company so they will have the koach to receive
it. The nimshal is that Hashem is bah lishpot ha'aretz, making noises
closer and closer to us so that we should be warned of his imminent
coming. Then he made the following observation, which I thought was
beautiful: Rashi explains how the nesher carries its young on its wings
instead of in its claws as do other birds. He asked, how do they get up
onto those wings? And answered, that the nesher comes in close and gives
its young the opportunity to jump up onto its wings. In the same way,
HKB"H warns us of his coming, and gives us the opportunity to "jump on"
so that He can be mekayem yifros kenafav yikachehu. The time to jump is
now, as the noises that the Nesher makes come closer and closer.

Rav Salomon gave one eitza, sort of derech agav. You can get all the
news that you need to hear about what's going on in a few minutes a day.
There is no need to sit in front of the radio and hear minute by minute.
If you have time for that, go sit and learn, say Tehilim, do a chesed.
 Lo vechail velo vechoach.

Several suggestions he made concerning emphasizing the ruach:

We say in selichos, tamachti yesedosai bishelosh esrei midos. This
doesn't mean saying the midos, but doing them. We should work on our
own arichas af, emes, chesed, etc. to be zoche for our tefilos to be
"nismach" with the shelosh esrei midos of HKB"H. And, he stressed,
that starts in the home.

He spoke about tefila, and how Hashem is karov bechol kor'enu elav.
So why are tefilos not always answered? He answered with the explanation
of gadol avono mineso which the Shulchan Aruch uses to describe talking
during davening. He said (I posted this at least once) that Kayin used
that phrase bitmiya, is my sin of wiping out 1/4 of the world's population
really that bad that You cannot forgive me? Here, it is said benichusa,
it IS gadol mineso, which the Sh"A does not use for any other aveira. Why?

When a person is mezalzel in davening by talking, he is showing that he
has little respect for the power inherent in davening. He is disarming
his own greatest power. When the Tosfos Yom Tov said that the gezeros
Tach veTat were because of talking during davening, what he meant was when
the gezeros happened, and people realized that ein lanu lehisha'en ela al
Avinu shebashamayim, HKB"H said, where were you yesterday? If you thought
tefila could accomplish so much, why don't you treat it with respect?

Another reason he went into was gezel. When a person has money which
does not belong to him, or loans which he took without the wherewithal
or intention to repay, his tefilos for parnasa are not genuine, and are
not answered. He included specifically in this obligations to tzedaka
and sechar limud.

He suggested that we do teshuva not only on aveiros, but on missed
opportunities of tefila. How many wasted tefilos we could have used
to our own advantage and that of kelal Yisrael but we wasted by not
recognizing the koach hatefila.

My apologies but a review of the Novominsker Rebbe's talk will have to
wait or be taken up by someone else who was there (was anyone else from
the list there?)


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Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 15:19:46 +0200
From: "shalom" <rachelbe@netvision.net.il>
Rashbam on Arvei Pesachim

My son recently began learning Arvei Pesachim and asked me why Rashi was
supplemented with Rashbam on the page.

I always assumed that Rashi was somehow "deficient" on Arvei Pesachim, so
the Rashbam was added to "bolster" the Pshat on the page. My son's question,
however, made me realize that my assumption begs the question.

If Rashi doesn't fill the bill on Arvei Pesachim - why not?
Is this the only place in all of Shas where Rashi is deemed to need support?
(Clearly in Bava Batra and the end of Makkot the situation was very
different, and Rashi was replaced, not supplemented)

In any case, I would appreciate any insights or references that would help
me (and my son) understand this better.

Shana Tova,
Shalom Berger
Alon Shvut

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Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 10:58:13 EDT
From: Joelirich@aol.com
Re: Kinus

All the suggestions are well taken. I've always wondered about the
gemora in taanis(sorry I'm at work without sfarim) that describes when
they really pulled out all the stops on later taanisim in the cycle
they spent part of they day on milei dmata - issues of the particular
place they lived in. I always assumed that this was similar to what
the kinus stressed(eg talking during davening) but wondered why there
seemed to be a lack of emphasis (or perhaps this was taken for granted) on
individual cheshbon hanefesh as to what was standing in that individual's
way to having a closer connection to HKB"H. It always seemed to me that
efforts to stamp out particular items(eg talking) without the cheshbon
for individual's "root causes" are less effective.



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Date: Sun, 16 Sep 2001 00:31:22 -0400
From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@juno.com>
Kinus, Part II

Part II-Novominsker Rebbe's talk at the kinus Thursday night:

NB: he was very emotional during his talk; the notes here do not do
justice to that at all.

He started by saying what RYGB asked about. At a time when this malchus
shel chesed, from which we have been zoche to tremendous chasodim and
opportunities, is experiencing such tzoros, we need to be mishtatef
betza'aram shel tzibur. He specifically mentioned nonJews as well as Jews.

He mentioned the pasuk in Yonah that "ha'aniya chisheva lehishaver" and
that the events of the week showed us that when there is a his'orerus
of midas hadin, nobody anywhere is secure. (Rav Matisyahu Solomon said
this last MONDAY night, before the incidents!)

He also quoted the pasuk related to tekias shofar-hayitaka shofar ba'ir
veha'am lo yecheradu, but said that many people don't know the end of
the pasuk: im yihyeh ra'ah be'ir Vashem lo asa-if there is a ra'ah in
a city, and there clearly is, it's yad Hashem and, going back to the
pasuk in Yonah, the Rav Hachovel is telling us kum kera el Elokecha.

He then asked about the order in parashas hateshuva. After the initial
hirhurei teshuva, people say halo ki en Elokai bekirbi metza'uni hara'os
ha'eleh. He answered by saying that hirhur teshuva is still not teshuva
gemura. The sequence is shuva Yisrael ad Hashem Elokecha, then kechu
imachem devarim. First, hirhurei teshuva, then specific actions on
specific problems; you are not yotzeh teshuva with hirhurim.

He mentioned a Maharal in Nesiv Hateshuva that Avraham was the first
to do teshuva me'ahava. Yitzchak was the first to do teshuva meyir'ah,
and Yaakov did teshuva be'eis tzara. When he had a tzara, his response
was a neder. We should make kabolos, bli neder, to fix those things
that need fixing, as the kechu imachem part of our teshuva in response
to the eis tzara.

He mentioned the arba'ah chilukei kapara and alluded to, avoiding very
carefully (I thought) spelling it out, that there were chilukei kapara
beyond Yom Kippur, one of which is chillul Hashem, and that the only tikun
for this aveira is kiddush Hashem. One way is following the advice of the
Rabbeinu Yonah to be "rodef pe'ulos shel chesed ve'emes" as protection
from yisurim. These are also opportunities for kiddush Hashem. He said
that gemilus chasadim has always been the zechus of American Jewry which,
by the same token, has and had much to be mechaper for, and that by doing
gemilus chasadim in many different ways one can accomplish significant
kiddush Hashem at the same time. Here too he specifically mentioned
kiddush Hashem for nonJews as well as Jews. He told the story of a cab
driver whose Jewish passenger got out a block before his destination so
that the cabbie would be left at a place where he could more easily get
another fare. The nonJewish driver's response was "now I know why the
Jews are the chosen people". He stressed that opportunities for kiddush
Hashem abound everywhere every day.

Here he said what he repeated many times during his talk, that things are
not the same as they were and our responses cannot be the same. What he
was saying, had he said it last week, would have been a musar shmooz. It
can't stop at that, things have to change. Up to here, he said, was the
easy part.

We have to restrain ourselves in many ways. He quoted what Rav (Pinchas)
Breuer had said a week prior at a gathering of rabbanim, that yechidim
and especially the tzibur have to restrain themselves from ta'anugei
olam hazeh during an eis tzara. One area is restraining ourselves from
talking about other Jews, whether individuals or groups (a good point
for Areivim members to keep in mind).

He then started on a favorite topic, (both of his and of us on Areivim,)
spending at semachos. He said that a group of rabbanim came to him eight
months ago about takanos for semachos. Having heard it so many times
before, he told them that when they have 500 families who are prepared
to go along with whatever the rabbanim come up with, he'll talk. He said
he's still waiting, even though he'd settle now for 100. In particular,
he was very emphatic about lavish "vorts" which he said are totally
unnecessary and a waste of time and money. He didn't limit to that,
though, and mentioned unnecessary spending on weddings and bar mitzvas
and asked that it be very much limited from the current situation; that
"everyone is doing it" is not enough of a reason.

He wanted to end bidavar tov, so he quoted the Gemara in Kesubos on
ketzad merakdin lifnei hakalah. Beis Shamai asked Beis Hillel, what about
the pasuk of midevar sheker tirchak? The Gemara does not record Beis
Hillel having given an answer. The Maharal explains that for the chasan,
the kala IS na'ah vachasuda; regardless of what the objective truth is,
for him she is na'ah vachasuda. This subjective truth is why saying so
to the chasan is not a violation of midevar sheker tirchak.

We look to be na'ah vachasuda in the eyes of our Chasan, HKB"H. We ask
that Hashem show the Mida of rav chesed ve'emes. This means that the
emes should itself be derived from chesed; that Hashem should look
favorably upon us and through His chesed, see the subjective truth
of na'ah vachasuda as the emes. He used this to explain the phrase,
veyikon bechesed Kis'echa veseisheiv alav be'emes, that the emes with
which Hashem judges should be the favorable subjective emes derived from
Him seeing us as na'ah vachasuda.

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Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2001 21:31:45 EDT
From: Zeliglaw@aol.com
Fwd: Rabbi Herschel Schachter - Malchiyos

RHS on Malchuyios and the WTC 
    Steve Brizel

to subscribe, email: weekly@torahweb.org
for anything else, email: torahweb@torahweb.org
the HTML version of this dvar Torah can be found at:
Rabbi Herschel Schachter

According to the popular opinion in the Midrash, five of the aseres
hadibros (ten commandment) were etched out on one stone, and the other
five on the other stone (as is commonly displayed in shuls). The midrash
adds that the first of the dibros ("onochi hashem..." -- "I am the
Lord....") is related to the sixth ("lo sirtzoch"), which was parallel to
it; the second is related to the seventh, which was parallel to it, etc.

Our religion believes in a kind G-d, who has created man in His image,
betzelem Elokim. Because of this tzelem Elokim which was imparted to all
people, our religion preaches the importance of kavod hebriyos. One who
kills another human being, or even as much as acts in a disrespectful
fashion towards others, obviously does not appreciate the other person's
tzelem Elokim. This lack of appreciation of the concept of tzelem Elokim
is often due to a lack of belief in Elokim, or a distorted perception
thereof. Years and years of developments of civilization can be overturned
and destroyed by people who do not understand Elokim, and consequently
do not appreciate the concept of tzelem Elokim.

One of the major themes of Rosh Hashana which comes through the aseres
yemei teshuva until Yom Kippur is the idea of malchiyos. G-d calls upon
us to coronate Him; to try to get others to do the same; and G-d has
promised us that the day will come when all of mankind will accept Him
as King. According to the interpretation of Rashi, this promise appears
in the opening passage of shema yisroel: Hashem, who at present is only
recognized as G-d by us ("Hashem Elokeinu) will ultimately be universally
accepted as King ("Hashem Echod").

And this is the central theme of the beracha of malchiyos: we pray to
Hashem that "meloch al kol ha'olam kulo b'chvodecha", that He should
see to it that His promise be fulfilled -- that ultimately the day will
come that His kingdom will be recognized by all people. And we further
plead with G-d that it is not fair that just because a small group of
people reject His Kingship, that the overwhelming majority of the people
of the world should suffer. We pray on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur
"v'chol ha'rish'a kula k'ashan tichle" that Hashem eradicate that small
group who refuse to accept His kingship, and are thereby holding back
the fulfillment of the promise of the idea of malchiyos.

On the night of Pesach we celebrate the redemption of Klal Yisroel. At the
occasion of yetsias Mitzraim, G-d promised Moshe Rabbeinu ("eheye asher
eheye") that just as He was redeeming Bnei Yisroel, so too the day will
come that he will redeem all of mankind. This is the biblical promise of
malchiyos. It is for this reason that on Pesach night we recite "nishmas
kol chay tivarech es shimcha Hashem Elokeinu"; we pray to G-d that he see
to it that all of mankind should accept His kingship. And on Pesach night
as well we pray regarding the small group of people who simply refused
to accept -- don't allow them to hold up the fulfillment of your promise
of malchiyos: "shvoch chamoscha el hagoyim asher lo yedaucha" -- pour
out your anger on that small group! "Tirdof b'af v'tashmideim mitachas
shemei Hashem" ("chase with fury and destroy them from under G-d's sky").

G-d has declared that He personally will forever wage battle with Amalek;
and He called upon us to participate in that battle. We should assume
that evil will disappear by itself. We must help fight against it. As
long as Amalek is still around who are "lo yareh Elokim" (" do not fear
G-d"), the kingship of Hashem is incomplete ("ki yad al keis kah --
ain hakisei shaleim...." -- "for there is a hand on G-d's throne --
the throne of G-ds is not complete.....").

We still have backward barbarians around who refuse to recognize malchus
Hashem (G-d's kingship). Their distorted perception of Elokus (godliness)
causes them not to appreciate the dignity of human life, which rests on
the tzelem Elokim of each and every human.

When we blow the shofar at the conclusion of the beracha (blessing)
of malchiyos, we are a) coronating G-d, and accepting Him once again
as King; and b) enhancing the urgency of our request at the end of
the beracha (blessing) of malchiyos to see to it that His promise of
malchiyos be fulfilled.

Go to top.

Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 15:47:50 EDT
From: RabbiRichWolpoe@aol.com
Re: Rambam's ikkarim

In a message dated 9/10/01 1:40:59 PM Eastern Daylight Time, 
gil_student@hotmail.com writes:
<< Even if someone disagreed slightly with an ikkar, he still disagreed.
What that tells me is that while today's normative ikkarim are not
replicas of the Rambam's exact words, they are based on them. >>

AIUI the normative ikkarim are how the Rambam was ACCEPTED by
consensus and not the precise meaning as the Rambam articulated it.
Or IOW Intellectually the Rambam's original intention is important,
but Halachah lema'aseh the more normative impact is how it has been
implemented by poskim etc. over time.

In all cases, there is some room for interpretation of what was
meant. This is because some concepts are understood more literally by
some and more conceptually by others.

Rich Wolpoe

Go to top.

Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 17:41:36 -0400
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Re: Lubavitch Philosophy

RMS's comment:
>> This idea of 'bittul' to a Tzaddik is NOT a yesod of chassidus, but
>> something that is common in Russian chasidim. Many other chassidim (and
>> Rebbes) would dismiss this idea. (It is also hard to support from the
>> writings and letters of the Alter Rebbe especially in light of the 
>> Tekunos Liozna.)

My source's comments:
>Your correspondent is obviously unaware of original Chassidic texts
>like Noam Elimelech, Kedushas Levi and Tiferes Shelomoh (to pick just 3 
>highly symptomatic sources for that teaching out of many others).
>As for the earlier email re cholek al rabo, your correspondent there 
>failed to quote the whole Remo: you can argue with clear absolute proof to 
>the contrary, but not without. And even then, first you have to present 
>the alleged proof, for may be the rebbe may have a refutation thereof. 
>Secondly, matters of halachah are different than other type  of 
>pronouncements. Halachah is objective and must provide a source (meheichon 
>dantuni), and without that is invalid. This is the grave error of the 
>proponents of "da'as Torah" where "halachic" rulings are made impromptu 
>without foundation or rebuttal of contrary opinions. Even there, for that 
>matter, one could argue that this may be binding for the pronouncers' 
>talmidim who follow every word of their teachers, but it certainly has no 
>value or validity for anyone else until he can show meheichon dantuni. KvCT

ygb@aishdas.org      http://www.aishdas.org/rygb

Go to top.

Date: Sun, 16 Sep 2001 13:28:51 -0700 (PDT)
From: Harry Maryles <hmaryles@yahoo.com>
Re: Kinus, Part II

Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@juno.com> wrote:
> Part II-Novominsker Rebbe's talk at the kinus Thursday night:
> He started by saying what RYGB asked about. At a time when this malchus
> shel chesed, from which we have been zoche to tremendous chasodim and
> opportunities, is experiencing such tzoros, we need to be mishtatef
> betza'aram shel tzibur. He specifically mentioned nonJews as well as Jews.

This approach does not surprise me, and of course I agree entirely with
the sentiment. Rabbi Perlow, who I am proud to say was my twelfth grade
Rebbe at HTC, had virtually the same reaction when JFK was assasinated.
I know that he feels a tremendous sense of Hakoras HaTov to the US and
feels that we should use every opportunity to express it.


Go to top.


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