Lesson 44c Loshon horah that was already told – Loshon horah about workmanship

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Lesson # 44c

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



Telling loshon
horah that was already told

  1. I was telling over the shenanigans of a former classmate
    to a couple of friends.  When I was through, they informed me that they had
    already heard about it from another classmate.  I was wondering if I
    violated the prohibition of speaking loshon horah, since they already knew
    about it from another source.
  1. It is still considered loshon horah for the following 2
    1. It is prohibited to speak derogatorily about a fellow Jew,
      even if it will cause him no harm.
    2. When people hear it from a second source, it lends more
      credibility to the story and therefore can cause more harm to the one who
      was spoken about.


Loshon horah about

  1. The other day, a Jewish plumber did some work in my home. 
    I was not happy with his workmanship.  Would it be loshon horah if I told
    this to others?
  1. Yes, it would be loshon horah, as it can cause great harm
    to his livelihood.  If there is a purpose in telling others about his poor
    workmanship, the law might be different.  We will discuss this in more
    detail, G-d willing, in future lessons.


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:  On the flip side of what we were previously discussing,
the posuk tells us: “And you should make yourselves holy and you will be holy”.

Menaseh:  That seems kind of redundant.  Why does the
posuk need to say “and you will be holy”?  If you make yourself holy of course
you’ll be holy.

Oded:  The Gemora in Yoma explains that the posuk is
telling us that if a person makes himself holy a little, he will be made holy a
lot; if a person makes himself holy below, he will be made holy above; if a
person makes himself holy in this world, he will be made holy in the world to

Menaseh:  That sounds very familiar.

Oded:  Yes; when we discussed the flip side, i.e. a
person who makes his self impure, the Gemora gave the same explanation.

Menaseh:  So if a person makes his self a little holy
he will actually be made more holy than he made himself?

Oded:  That’s correct!  When a person restrains his
evil inclination and leans towards the side of holiness; Hashem, who is the
source of all good and kindness, will radiate upon him an abundance of

Menaseh:  But when we were discussing a person who
makes his self impure, you explained that passage differently!

Oded:  You’re right!  That’s because when a person
goes in the wrong direction Hashem will not push him further in that
direction.  Therefore, we were compelled to explain it either like Rashi, who
explains that Hashem removes the divine assistance from him, or like we
suggested, that his impure words contaminate his holy words.  But when a person
moves in the right direction, Hashem will eagerly push him further along in that
direction.  As our sages teach us, Hashem says: open for me an entrance the
size of a pinhole and I will open for you an entrance the size of a doorway
leading into a large ballroom.

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1) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 5
Be’er Mayim Chaim 11

2) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 5 Par. 4


Sefer Shmiras Haloshon Section 2 Chap. 2

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