Tuesday, August 03, 2021

Rischa D'Araisa Season 3 Episodes 16-17: Just Desserts and Driving Deep into Midos Ra'os


Rischa D'Araisa Season 3 Episode 16:

Just Desserts:

Freezing out Ben and Jerry's from Hashgochos would be a Halachic Meltdown


Rischa D'Araisa Season 3 Episode 17:

Driving Deep into Midos Ra'os:

Ford's Model-T


 The LORD's Model Tzadik


Sunday, July 18, 2021

More tidbits from Rabbi Zev Leff's 5781 Tisha B'Av Presentation

1. Rabbeinu Yonah, Sha'arei Teshuvah  2:5

 ויש על הבוטח בשם להוחיל במעוף צוקתו כי יהיה החשך סבת האורה. כמו שכתוב (מיכה ז׳:ח׳) אל תשמחי אויבתי לי כי נפלתי קמתי כי אשב בחשך ה' אור לי. ואמרו רבותינו זכרונם לברכה אלמלא נפלתי לא קמתי אלמלא ישבתי בחשך לא היה אור לי. וכל איש ואיש ביום צר לו יתן לבו להבין ולהתענות עם התשובה והתפלה. כמו שהצבור חייבים לצום ולהתענות בעת צרתם כאשר תקנו חז"ל וזה צום נבחר ויום רצון. וכאשר יבא מוסר הש"י על האיש אשר הוא זך וישר יהיה לנסיון ולהגדיל שכרו לעולם הבא כמו שנאמר (דברים ח׳:ט״ז) למען ענותך ולמען נסותך להטיבך באחריתך. ואמרו רבותינו זכרונם לברכה פשפש במעשיו בעת צרתו וחפש וחקר ולא מצא חטא בידו הן הן יסורין של אהבה

And one who trusts God should hold on during the vision of his distress; for the darkness will be the cause for the light - as it is written (Micah 7:8), "Do not rejoice over me, O my enemy; since I have fallen, I rise again; since I sit in darkness, the Lord is my light." And our Rabbis, may their memory be blessed, said (Midrash Tehillim 22), "If I had not fallen, I would not have risen; If I had not sat in darkness, the Lord would not have been my light." And every single person on the day of his trouble should put into his heart to understand and afflict himself, [together] with the repentance and prayer - just like the community is obligated to fast and afflict themselves at the time of their trouble, as the Sages, may their memory be blessed, ordained. And that fast day is chosen and is a day of acceptance. And when the rebuke of God, may He be blessed, comes to a man that is pure and straight, it becomes a test, and enhances his reward in the world to come - as it is stated (Deuteronomy 8:16), "in order to test you by hardships only to benefit you in the end." And our Rabbis, may their memory be blessed, said (Berakhot 5a), "[If] one searched his deeds at the time of his trouble, sought out and investigated, but did not find a sin - these are certainly afflictions of love."

2. Every year one must find a new aspect to mourn on Tisha B'Av

על חורבן בית המקדש כי הורס וכי הודש אספוד בכל שנה ושנה מספד חדש על הקודש ועל המקדש. (קינה כ"ה)

3. Bittul Torah

Bittul Torah  also means l'battel es haTorah - to negate the significance of Torah.

4. Yefashfesh b'Ma'asav

Yefashfesh b'Ma'asav means what is says: "Examine your deeds," not "their  deeds."

5. Sefer Chassidim  545

בכל מקום דעה את בוראך. פירוש במקום שאסור להרהר בדבר תורה כיצד דעהו בצניעות

Know your Creator everywhere. Meaning, in a place where it is forbidden to think words of Torah how can you know Him? With tzeniyus.

בכל מקום דעה את בוראך פי' כו'. ר"ל דכתיב בכל דרכיך דעהו דהיינו בכל מקום דעה את בוראך דמשמע אפילו במקום שאסור להרהר בדברי תורה וכיצד דעהו שם וקאמר פי' במקום כו' דעהו בצניעות

6. To be מקבל בשמחה means not to be happy, but to believe that it has meaning.

(very Viktor Frankl!)

Rabbi Zev Leff on Esav Sonei L'Yaakov

We have perused this topic many times. Most recently:


This Tisha b'Av I was in Mattityahu and went to Rav Zev Leff's Kinnos. While Rav Leff's approach is not my approach, I feel it is a valid alternative.

Among many other topics, he addressed the topic of Sinah, which is a focal topic of the day (as in Sinas Chinam).

He suggested that we misunderstand the definition of sinah

As evidence he cited Yaakov's relationship with Leah. 

The Torah (Bereishis 29:30)  says that Yaakov loved Rachel more than Leah - clearly indicating that both were loved, but that Rachel was loved more.

Yet immediately afterwards (29:31) the Torah says that Hashem saw that Leah was senu'ah. In context, it does not make sense to say this means that she was hated.

Rather, contended Rav Leff, sinah means not hatred but any form of pirud, of separation. It is thus that we understand the command of Lo tisnah es achicha b'lvavecha (Vayikra 19:17): There should not be a separation between you and your brother.

Accordingly, when the Gemara (Shabbos 89a) states that at Har Sinai there came down sinah to the nations, it connotes not hatred, but an inevitable separation. 

Rav Leff thus explained the Esav sonei l'Yaakov does relate to the nations of the world and the Jews, but that it does not connote the non-Jews hate Jews intrinsically and universally. He noted that many non-Jews are friends, supporters and advocates of Jews individually and collectively.  Nonetheless, there will always exist an inevitable separation that can never be fully (and should not ever be fully) obliterated or ignored.

Rischa D'Araisa Season 3 Episode 15: Dismissing the Olympic Torch may cause us to consign the Kedoshei Munich to oblivion


Rischa D'Araisa Season 3 Episode 15

Dismissing the Olympic Torch may cause usto consign the Kedoshei Munichto oblivion