Lesson 12c deceptive loshon horah-deragatory but doesn’t cause harm

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Lesson #12c

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have in mind that you are studying this material as a merit for a specific
single and/or Jewish singles throughout the world.


Deceptive Loshon


  1. If someone speaks loshon horah casually, as if he doesn’t
    know that what he’s saying is loshon horah, is that considered loshon
  1. It most certainly is.  This form of loshon horah is dubbed
    by our sages as “deceptive loshon horah”.  An example of this would be the
    Gemora Yerushalmi that we mentioned in yesterday’s lesson (see appendix

Loshon Horah
that’s derogatory but causes no harm


  1. My brother related to me some negative information about a
    sibling; but, I didn’t believe him.  I’m wondering if that would be
    considered a violation of loshon horah on his part, since his words ended
    up causing no harm.
  1. It would still be considered loshon horah.  As mentioned
    previously, loshon horah is defined as any form of communication that
    causes harm, even if it’s not derogatory; or, any form of communication
    that is derogatory, even if it causes no harm
    .  As a matter of fact,
    even if your brother knew from the outset that you would not believe him,
    he would still be in violation of loshon horah, since he spoke derogatory
    words about a fellow Jew.



This section is
formatted as a conversation between Oded and Menaseh.   Oded is encouraging his
friend Menaseh to be more careful in guarding his tongue from evil speech.  The
thoughts in this section are primarily based on the sefer, Shmiras Haloshon.

Oded:  Here is some great advice to help guard his
tongue from evil speech.  Accustom yourself not to talk in Shul or the Beis

Menaseh:  What is the great benefit in that?

Oded:  A few things.

  • It is a big mitzvah to not desecrate the holiness of these
    places with mundane or forbidden speech.
  • The Torah that you learn and the tefilos that you daven
    will remain complete.  You won’t miss any amens, yehai shemai rabbas,
    kedushah or borechu.
  • You can have 10 years of your life free and clear of any
    forbidden speech.
  • It will be easier for you to guard your tongue the rest of
    your day since you’ve accustomed yourself to guard your tongue for at
    least a few hours every day.

Menaseh:  How do you figure that I can have 10 years
free of forbidden speech?

Oded:  Let’s run a simple calculation.  The average
Jewish male will be in a Shul or a Beis Medrash for approximately 2-3 hours a
day between all the tefilos and a little time after.  If he has a set time for
Torah study we can add say another 2 hours.  That’s approximately 4-5 hours a
day, free of forbidden speech.  That amounts to between a fifth or sixth of
your 24 hour day free and clear of loshon horah.  Depending on your current age
and how long you’ll live that can add up to about 10 years.

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1) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 3 Par.

2) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 3 Par. 6


Sefer Shmiras Haloshon Sec. 1 Chasimas HaSefer Chap. 2


The Gemora Yerushalmi (Meseches Peah Chap. 1 Hal.1) relates
the following:  There was once a workforce setting out to work.  One of the
workers, a fellow named Bar Chovetz, didn’t show up that day.  His coworkers,
in an attempt to surreptitiously bring this to the attention of the taskmaster,
began asking each other: “what shall we eat today?”  One of them responded:
“let’s eat chuvtzah”, a type of legume.  When the taskmaster heard this he
exclaimed: “hey, that reminds me, where is Bar Chovetz”.  This, said Rebbi
Yochanan, is considered underhanded loshon horah.

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