Parshat Acharei Mot – Kedoshim: Secrets of the Torah with Rav Berland

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PARSHAT ACHAREI MOT – KEDOSHIM: SECRETS OF THE TORAH WITH RAV BERLAND

“THE SECOND PASSOVER[1] IS THE GREATEST WONDER!”

(Excerpts Translated from the teachings of Rav Berland Shlit”a[2])

WE CAN MAKE ANOTHER PESACH

Moshe (Moses) knew the laws of Judaism and the sages teach us that Moshe knew that there is a Second Passover (Pesach Sheni).  What, there is a Second Pesach (Passover)? All of a sudden, Moshe teaches us we can make another Pesach (Passover).  We should celebrate another Succos, we should light the Menorah for another Chanukah, and we should make another Purim? There is Shoshan Purim but this is not another Purim, it is still Purim.  Should we do another Purim in the Month of Nisan of in the Month of Eyar?

The Targum Yona explains Moshe knew the laws of the Pesach Sheni (the Second Pesach).  However, he had a specific reason why he wanted to ask Hashem (G-d) again about the Pesach Sheni. Moshe wanted to teach the Sanhedrin (Highest Jewish Court) that it is necessary to inquire and to question every element of Jewish Law.  Even if someone knows the Halacha (Jewish law) clearly, he should still inquire about it and ask others about it.  Constantly a person needs to review and elucidate[3] Jewish laws (Halacha) because the truth is that in every single Jewish law there is always something new, like a new nuance or detail that causes that whole Jewish Law to change.  In addition, these new details and modifications depend on each individual.

PESACH SHENI IS THE GREATEST WONDER

Pesach Sheni (The Second Passover) is the greatest wonder!  Moshe tells us that we can bring another Pesach offering, but what kind of Rabbi says you can bring another Pesach offering?  A real Rabbi would say we should have another Rosh Hashana meaning we should travel to Uman again for another Rosh Hashana.  Sometimes people get to Uman too late or not at all.  For example, this one did not get to the airport on time and missed his flight, so there should be another Rosh Hashana where anyone who did not get to Uman should come to Uman in the month of Chesvon.

What? The Rebbe (Rebbe Nachman of Breslov) does not want another Rosh Hashana?  How can there be any concept of bringing a Second Pesach?  Pesach is on Pesach, Succos is on Succos, and the fast of Yom Kippur is on Yom Kippur.  Never the less, there is a Pesach Sheni which is just like all the other Jewish laws which constantly develop new nuances and details.

‘WHY WERE WE LEFT OUT?’

Why is it relevant to ask the question[4], “Why were we left out?”  If a person is impure then he is impure, he simply cannot bring a Pesach offering.  What were these Jews saying that they want special treatment?  They are asking for Moshe and the sages to make them a new Jewish law.  What can a person do? If he was impure so he cannot bring the Pesach offering.  However the Heilieg (Holy) Ohr Chayim comes to teach us what were these Jews really asking?  It is clear that if a person is impure he cannot bring the Pesach offering.  Why should the sages make another Pesach offering?  Those who were impure were under inescapable circumstances, like one that touched a rat or touched something impure there is nothing that can be done since an impure Jew is forbidden to eat the Pesach offering.

‘NADAV AND AVIHU ARE LITERALLY ALIVE!’

The Bene Yischar asks the question, why did they (those asking about doing another Pesach) tell Moshe that[5], “we were impure due to the soul of a person.”  What is significant about knowing that they were impure due to the soul of a person?  The Bene Yischar answers that they said to Moshe, ‘Nadav and Avihu are literally living.  Yosef is literally living.’  They saw Nadiv and Avihu living, they saw Yosef living!

They felt these Tzadikim were still living since truly great Tzadikim became part of Hashem, they become a part of the sacred name of Hashem, and they enter the World of Etzilus.  At that moment, when they asked Moshe “Why were we left out,” they had a greater comprehension of Judaism than Moshe and Aharon.  After that moment Moshe’s comprehension expanded, but at that moment when they asked the question they had a greater comprehension than Moshe and Aharon since they understood that these Tzadikim were literally living.

THE LIVING DEAD

The Tzadik is alive! People came to Moshe and said Moshe our teacher these Tzadikim are not dead, these Tzadikim are alive.  So there question really was, ‘These great Tzadikim that are not really dead cause impurity?’  They are extremely holy and great Tzadikim that continue living even after they have died.  They are simply lying down as if they are dead, so do these great Tzadikim that are lying in their graves as if they are dead do they cause a person to be impure?

Now Rashi explains that this was the beginning of a new nuance and detail in the laws of purity and impurity since these Tzadikim are really alive, they are the living dead.  Yet they are greater after they death than during their life, but there is a Jewish Law that a dead person causes impurity…so the question becomes if these Tzadikim are considered to be like a regular dead person in Jewish law or not?  So the decision is that if the body does not move it cause impurity but it is an incredible wonder that in the merit of this question comes the Laws of the Second Pesach – the Pesach Sheni.

make a prayer

A PRAYER [6] TO REVEAL THE LIGHT OF THE TZADIKIM:

Please Hashem have mercy on me for your name’s sake and give me the merit to yearn and long to come close to the Tzadikim and the Jews living with a real fear of Heaven always.  May I merit to build this longing and yearning until it gives me the strength to overcome and to break every single obstacle in the whole World standing in my way.

May I have the power to withstand and to tolerate every difficulty and trouble as well as every drudgery and pain in order to come close to the true Tzadikim.  May I merit to come close to the true Tzadikim and to bind myself to them in truth and may I continue to draw from them and to receive from them a true fear of you, Hashem (G-d).  In in the merit of this true fear of Heaven may I merit to be like your goodness wants me to be Hashem always and forever.

And may I merit that through these obstacles, drudgeries, and difficulties that I will suffer for the sake of getting close to the true Tzadikim that through all of this a holy and pure vessel will get built that can receive abundance and blessings and all the goodness for me and my family and for the whole Nation of Israel.  Ribono Shel Olam – Master of the Universe, have mercy on us and give us the merit to have complete emunah (faith-belief) in you in truth.  Please may we merit to believe in you and in your true Tzadikim with a complete heart and in truth.

And our hearts should not turn to any questions or confusions at all and no questions or confusions should come into our mindset or into our heart at all.  We should simply throw out our intellect which is confused and only rely on having emunah in you Hashem and in your true Tzadikim.  Yet we are only flesh and blood meaning we are a pile of dirt burning to sin.  Therefore, we should merit not to use our intellect except for your service in Torah and in living in true fear of you Hashem.

Please Hashem, may we never conduct any investigations into your existence, but rather may we know and may we believe in truth and in complete emunah that you are righteous in all your ways and paths.  And the true Tzadikim that you have sent down to us in this World are the ones connecting us to this true emunah in complete truth.

A BAAL SHEM TOV STORY FROM TODAY

When Rav Berland shlit”a began his odyssey[7] traveling from country to county outside of Israel,  Rebetzin Goldbloom told one of her friends that the Rav is giving out big gifts to those coming to visit him.  This friend told her husband what she had heard from Rebetzin Goldbloom, and this husband decided he would go to visit the Rav right away since he needed to be healed.

He was having pains in his leg and he believed that the Rav could give him the gift of being healthy.  He packed his bags and got a ticket for Morocco and upon arriving in Morocco – the husband went to see the Rav.  Just by seeing the Rav he felt completely healed and all his pain was gone.  This husband returned home to Israel with a real gift.

However, several months after that the pain in his leg returned and he immediately packed his bags to go visit the Rav again.  This time the Rav had moved to Zimbabwe.  Just like before, as soon as this husband arrived in Zimbabwe and saw the Rav he immediately felt completely healed.  After this husband’s trip to Zimbabwae, he made sure to visit the Rav from time to time even without feeling any pains, and he merited to visit the Rav in South Africa several times and in Holland as well.  During that period, the husband did not have any pains in his leg and he knew that he had received his complete healing from the Rav.

In the final months of the year 5776 (2016), the Rav decided he was ready to return to Israel and when he arrive back to the Holy Land, he was kidnapped and locked away in prison.  Soon afterwards, this husband’s leg again began to feel pain.  The pain increased and he did not know what to do since visiting the Rav was limited to a few select family members and the Rav’s lawyer.  This husband knew all his healing came when he connected with the Rav but without being able to visit the Rav he was at a loss of how to connect to the Rav and his pain in his leg continued.

On Shabbos Parshas Bo 5777 (2017[8]) this husband received a copy of Simchas Rabeinu[9] and read the ‘Baal Shem Tov Story From Today’ it contained.  In it, the Rav gives the wife of that story the following advice, “If you would read the Tefilah I wrote you, you would feel I am close by…Read that Tefilah every day and you will feel that I am close by you at all times!”

This husband immediately understood the message of this story as it personally applied to him and he thought, “Even if I cannot connect to the Rav physically by visiting him, I can still connect to him through prayer and specifically, by reading the prayers written and composed by the Rav.”  Since the following Shabbos [after Parshas Bo] was Tu-Bishvat, this husband ran to his bookshelf and took out the Rav’s book Tefilah Liani with prayers composed by the Rav for Tu-Bishvat.  And as soon as he began reading the Rav’s written prayers from Tefilah Liani, the pain in his leg vanished! [I heard this story from the husband himself twice.  Once in person right after it happened and then again over the phone before I wrote this story down.]

THE MESSAGE:

Rav Berland Shlit”a[10] writes, “We should merit to be brought close to this special Tzadik who has the ability to guard over us and to save us from agony and difficulty in our bodies and in our souls.”  And Rebbe Nachman[11] explains this connection is formed by traveling to the Tzadik, and he writes, “That it is hard for the World: regarding that it is necessary to travel to the Tzadik to hear the words he says…Therefore there is a big difference between a person that hears something from the mouth of the Tzadik and someone that learns books of Jewish ethics (mussar) in-depth.”

Meaning[12], “A book is only for someone’s memory as a recollection, and a person’s memory exists in his power of imagination.  Therefore a book does not possess the same spiritual level what so ever that exists when someone hears something from the Tzadik himself.”  This emphasis of receiving the oral Torah from the Tzadik is part of a foundational principle in Judaism, and Rav Yehoshua Cohen[13] (one of the few Jews alive today that has memorized the whole Talmud and its commentators) said, “The Oral Torah is much more important than the written Torah.”

PRAYER IS THE ESSENCE OF EMUNAH

However if circumstances and obstacles exist that completely prevent a person from traveling to the Tzadik and hearing his words than there is still another way to connect and to feel that the Tzadik is close by. As Rebbe Nosson[14] writes, “Prayer is the essence of emunah,” so when a person prays to Hashem (G-d) about something they connect to Hashem through their emunah in Hashem.

However, the secret we learn here is that we form a special connection to the Tzadik, and to Hashem (G-d), specifically when we pray the words of the Tzadik’s written prayers.  As Rav Shimsheon Barski[15] writes, “For anyone that wants to merit serving Hashem in truth, meaning that he will have fear of Hashem and that he will perform everything in the Torah.  And also to be saved from physical agony and difficulty, it is necessary to pray an abundance of prayers…and specifically from Reb Nosson’s book Likutey Tefilos.”

So now, we can understand why Rebbe Nachman writes, “There is a big difference between a person that hears something from the mouth of the Tzadik and someone that learns books of Jewish ethics (mussar).”  Meaning that specifically mussar books (books on Jewish ethics) are much less powerful in connecting a person to the Tzadik.  However, prayers written by the Tzadikim of Breslov, are books that connect a person straight to the Tzadik and to Hashem (G-d).  Therefore, when this husband read the Rav’s prayers for Tu-Bishvat, he connected himself to “This special Tzadik who has the ability to guard over us and to save us from agony and difficulty in our bodies and in our souls.”

TWO HALACHOS

During the days of the counting of the Omer, 24,000 studens of Rebbe Akiva passed away[16] because they did not behave honorably one to the other[17].  Therefore, during the days of the Omer it is fitting to learn and strengthen ourselves in the Jewish laws and practices concerning proper behavior between friends[18].

Several points regarding the Jewish laws between friends[19]:

  1. It is a Mitzvah brought by the Rambam[20] and the Chinuch[21] (a commandment) to love each and every Jew in the Nation of Israel the same way a person loves his own body, as it is written in the Torah, “And you will love your companion as you love yourself, I am G-d.”
  2. The Rambam[22] and the Chinuch[23] also bring that if it is known about a particular Jew that he publicly preforms transgressions and sins, and he is not willing to receive rebuke and he has not done repentance, then this Jew is considered a wicked person, and it is a Mitzvah (commandment) to hate him and to talk about him negatively.
  3. Those Jews that are “tinukot shenishbu” ]meaning they do the wrong thing because they do not know any better[ one should not hate them at all[24].
  4. The Chazon Ish[25] defines a “tinukot shenishbu” as, “Jews raised without Torah and Mitzvos, and no one tried to work with them to teach them and educate them about Judaism in the right way. These Jews still have the title of being part of the Nation of Israel [despite doing sins and transgressions publicly], since they are considered to be living what they are taught as a result of being forced into a non-Jewish lifestyle.”
  5. The Chazon Ish continues, “However, after a Jew has had a chance to reflect and genuinely think about Judaism, if he does not repent and change [from his non-Jewish lifestyle of sin, then his transgressions and sins] are considered to be his attempt to anger Hashem.”

THANK YOU!!!

Simchas Rabeinu successfully raised and distributed over $5,000 for “Kimcha Dipischa” this year. We send a warm appreciation to all our donors and specifically to the Yitzchaki family for their generous donation.  Do not wait until next year! Today begin a monthly Kimcha Dipischa donation of $50 to the Simchas Rabeinu Kimcha Dipischa fund, and next year at this time you will merit to make a contribution of $600 to the Simchas Raneinu Kimcha Dipischa fund! As Rav Barclay[26] writes, “Neglecting to give charity when one is capable is a serious transgression.”

Simchas Rabeinu has a “Kimcha Dipischa” fund that helps poor Jews all over the world with their Passover needs.  Do the Mitzvah of Kimcha Dipischa through Simchas Rabeinu by visiting: www.tha613.com TODAY!

DEDICATIONS:

 HaRav Eliezer Ben Etyah and the Rabbaneat Shlit”a, Chaya Shaina Chana Bas Itcha, Meir Beir Ben Chanah, Rachel Malka Bas Shana Tova, Matisyahu Yisrael Ben Rachel Malka, Ester Rachel Bas Nurit, Menachem Ben Ester Rachel, Moshe Ben Ester Rachel, Sarah Bas Ester Rachel, Yosef Baruch Ben Rachel Malka, Ezra ben Avraham z”l

For Dedications: info@tha613.com | For Donations: donations@tha613.com

YOU CAN ALSO DOWNLOAD A PDF OF ‘SIMCHAS RABEINU’ TO CONTINUE READING ON SHABBAT!

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[1] פסח שני

[2] שיעור בתאריך יד אייר תשנ”ה (1985) בסעודת מלווה מלכה

[3] To elucidate means to achieve greater understanding after investigating the matter.

[4] במדבר פרק ט פסוק ז ~  וַ֠יֹּאמְרוּ הָאֲנָשִׁ֤ים הָהֵ֙מָּה֙ אֵלָ֔יו אֲנַ֥חְנוּ טְמֵאִ֖ים לְנֶ֣פֶשׁ אָדָ֑ם לָ֣מָּה נִגָּרַ֗ע לְבִלְתִּ֨י הַקְרִ֜יב אֶת־קָרְבַּ֤ן יְקֹוָק֙ בְּמֹ֣עֲד֔וֹ בְּת֖וֹךְ בְּנֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵֽל:

[5] See footnote 3.

[6] This prayer is from Reb Nosson’s book Likeutey Tefilos, and Rav Berland’s book Tefilah Liani

[7] Journey, exile

[8] February 2017

[9] Simchas Rabeinu Parsha Sheet 2

[10] תפילה לעני לקט תפילות ובקשות פרק “להתקרשות לצדיק האמת” עמוד עז

[11] ליקוטי מוהר”ן חלק א תורה יט סעיף א ~ כִּי קָשֶׁה לְהָעוֹלָם: עַל מָה צָרִיךְ לִנְסֹעַ לְהַצַּדִּיק לִשְׁמֹעַ מִפִּיו, הֲלֹא אֶפְשָׁר לְעַיֵּן בַּסְּפָרִים דִּבְרֵי מוּסָר? אַךְ בֶּאֱמֶת הוּא תּוֹעֶלֶת גָּדוֹל, כִּי יֵשׁ חִלּוּק גָּדוֹל בֵּין הַשּׁוֹמֵעַ מִפִּי הַצַּדִּיק הָאֱמֶת בְּעַצְמוֹ וּבֵין הַשּׁוֹמֵעַ מִפִּי אַחֵר הָאוֹמֵר בִּשְׁמוֹ; מִכָּל שֶׁכֵּן כְּשֶׁשּׁוֹמֵעַ מִפִּי שֶׁשָּׁמַע מִפִּי הַשּׁוֹמֵעַ, כִּי יוֹרֵד בְּכָל פַּעַם מִדַּרְגָּא לְדַרְגָּא רָחוֹק מִפִּי הַצַּדִּיק. וְכֵן בֵּין הַשּׁוֹמֵעַ מִפִּי הַצַּדִּיק לַמְעַיֵּן בַּסֵּפֶר הוּא חִלּוּק גָּדוֹל בְּיוֹתֵר:

[12] קיצור לקוטי מוהר”ן השלם חלק א תורה יט סעיף יז ~ מַה שֶּׁקָּשֶׁה לְהָעוֹלָם עַל מַה שֶּׁצָּרִיךְ לִנְסֹעַ לְהַצַּדִּיק לִשְׁמֹעַ מִפִּיו הֲלֹא אֶפְשָׁר לְעַיֵּן בִּסְפָרִים דִּבְרֵי מוּסָר. אַךְ יֵשׁ חִלּוּק גָּדוֹל כִּי מִי שֶׁשּׁוֹמֵעַ מִפִּי הַצַּדִּיק בְּעַצְמוֹ מְקַבֵּל דִּבּוּר לְשׁוֹן-הַקֹּדֶשׁ בִּשְׁלֵמוּת דְּהַיְנוּ בְּיִרְאָה. וְעַל-יְדֵי-זֶה זוֹכֶה לְבַטֵּל וּלְהַכְנִיעַ רַע הַכּוֹלֵל שֶׁהוּא תַּאֲוַת נִאוּף עַד שֶׁזּוֹכֶה לְתִקּוּן הַבְּרִית שֶׁהוּא תִּקּוּן הַכֹּל וְהַכֹּל תָּלוּי בּוֹ תִּקּוּן כָּל הַתַּאֲווֹת וְהַמִּדּוֹת. וְזֶהוּ דַּוְקָא עַל-יְדֵי שֶׁמְּקַבֵּל מִפִּיו הַקָּדוֹש בְּעַצְמוֹ דַּיְקָא. אֲבָל מִי שֶׁשּׁוֹמֵעַ מִפִּי אַחֵר שֶׁשָּׁמַע מִמֶּנּוּ מִכָּל-שֶׁכֵּן כְּשֶׁשּׁוֹמֵעַ מִפִּי שֶׁשָּׁמַע מִפִּי הַשּׁוֹמֵעַ הוּא רָחוֹק מִזֶּה הַשְּׁלֵמוּת כִּי יוֹרֵד בְּכָל פַּעַם מִדַּרְגָּא לְדַרְגָּא. וּמִכָּל שֶׁכֵּן בֵּין הַשּׁוֹמֵעַ מִפִּי הַצַּדִּיק לַמְעַיֵּן בְּסֵפֶר הוּא חִלּוּק גָּדוֹל בְּיוֹתֵר כִּי סֵפֶר הוּא רַק לְזִכָּרוֹן וְהַזִּכָּרוֹן הוּא בְּכֹחַ הַמְדַמֶּה. עַל כֵּן הַסֵּפֶר הוּא בְּחִינָה אַחֶרֶת מַמָּשׁ וְאֵין לוֹ כְּלָל מַעֲלַת הַשּׁוֹמֵעַ מִפִּיו הַקָּדוֹש בְּעַצְמוֹ:

[13] שמעתי את זה בשיעור גמרא במסכת מכות דף יז. – יח. שהרב יהשוע כהן שליט”א מסר בישיבת שובו בנים בעיר עתיקא יום א בבוקר – ד אייר תשע”ז

[14] קיצור לקוטי מוהר”ן חלק א תורה ז סעיף ב ~ הַתְּפִלָּה הִיא בִּבְחִינַת אֱמוּנָה

[15] העצות המבארות פרק תפילה אות ב

[16] עידן המועדים ניסן הכנת לפסח ליל הסדר וימי העומר (תשע”ז) סימן מנהגי ימי ספירת העומר סעיף א

[17] יבמות דף סב: ~ אמרו: שנים עשר אלף זוגים תלמידים היו לו לרבי עקיבא, מגבת עד אנטיפרס, וכולן מתו בפרק אחד מפני שלא נהגו כבוד זה לזה

[18] עידן המועדים ניסן הכנת לפסח ליל הסדר וימי העומר (תשע”ז) סימן מנהגי ימי ספירת העומר סעיף א

[19] הלכות בין אדם לחברו מאת יצחק יעקוב פוקס, פרק א סעיף א עד ז כולל הערות

[20] רמב”ם דעות פרק ו הלכה ג

[21] ספר החינוך מצווה רמג                                                                                                                                                                

[22] רמב”ם רוצח ושמירת הנפש פרק יג הלכה יד

[23] ספר החיוך מצווה רחל

[24] הלכות בין אדם לחברו מאת יצחק יעקוב פוקס, פרק א סעיף ז

[25]חזון איש יו”ד א ס”ק ו וגם חזון איש ערובין סימן כג

[26] Guidelines – Pesach by Rabbi Elozor Barclay, Chapter 1 question 9 page 18

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