Lesson 50

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Lesson #50

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have in mind that you are studying this material as a merit for a specific
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Believing loshon
horah as a result of judging non-favorably


  1. My friend told me about an acquaintance whom she saw enter
    an eatery of questionable kashrus.  I found out that what she told me is
    true.  By believing her words, am I in violation of accepting loshon
  1. If you could judge your acquaintance favorably and she’s a
    person who normally is careful about mitzvah observance, then you are
    obligated to judge her favorably.  If you don’t judge her favorably, you
    are in violation of the mitzvah to judge your fellow Jew favorably as well
    as the sin of believing loshon horah, since you believed the teller’s
    negative interpretation of the incident.


  1. I have a friend that had a judgment rendered against him by
    a rabbinical court in a financial dispute that he had with another party. 
    He told me that he strongly disagrees with the courts conclusion.  I must
    confess that I think he might be right.  Would that be considered
    accepting loshon horah?
  1. Yes.  You have an obligation to judge the rabbinical court
    favorably and assume that they made their decision based on the claims
    that were laid out before them and based on Torah true principles.  In such
    a situation, your first obligation is to try to convince your friend that the
    decision that was rendered might in fact be correct.  It is certainly
    forbidden to accept your friend’s interpretation of the matter and as a
    result look down upon the rabbinical court for rendering that decision. 
    The mitzvah of judging your fellow Jew favorably is especially applicable
    to G-d fearing individuals.


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.

Menaseh:  You mentioned yesterday that people with
bad character traits bad mouth their friends and incite others against them and
then take pride in their “strength and wisdom”.

Oded:  I was going to share with you what Dovid
Hamelech said to Doeg regarding this.

Menaseh:  What did he tell him?

Oded:  Doeg spoke loshon horah about Dovid and
Achimelech to Shaul.  There is a posuk in Tehilim which states:  “Why do you
glorify yourself in evil, strong man?”  This Posuk is referring to Doeg.

Menaseh:  How so?

Oded:  After Doeg spoke loshon horah to Shaul, Dovid
said to him: “Is this Strength?  A person sees his friend at the lip of a pit
and pushes him in, or at the edge of a roof and shoves him off.  Is this
strength?  What is strength?  When a person sees his friend teetering at the
edge of a pit or at the edge of a roof and saves him.  You saw that Shaul was
angry at me and you chose to sully me.  Is this the way a person acts?”

Menaseh:  So the point is that true wisdom and
strength is when you use it to protect your friend and cover for him.  However,
if instead of protecting and saving your friend, you kick him when he’s down,
that is not true strength and wisdom.

Oded:  Precisely!

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

2) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 6 Par. 8 footnote


Sefer Shmiras Haloshon Sha’ar Hatevunah Chap. 17

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