Lesson 62

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Lesson #62

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Loshon horah about

  1. Am I allowed to speak loshon horah about my relatives?
  1. Although it’s true that often when people speak loshon
    horah about relatives, especially close ones, it is not with the intent to
    harm, and the relative also might not mind; it is still considered loshon
    horah.  If you feel that your relative wronged someone and you’re speaking
    about it in order to rectify the situation, you may do so.  (Care should
    be taken to adhere to the 7 conditions listed in the appendix below.)
    However, even under such circumstances, if you were hasty and misjudged
    your relative, and as a result spoke loshon horah about him, it is
    considered a transgression.


Loshon horah about
a spouse or their family

  1. Is it permissible for me to tell my family loshon horah
    about my wife?
  1. Absolutely not.  There does seem to be a misconception
    that one may speak loshon horah about their spouse.   However, the fact is
    that it is forbidden to speak loshon horah about both men and women alike,
    even if it’s your spouse.
  1. What about the in-laws?
  1. You may not speak loshon horah about your in-laws.


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:  One who learns Torah protects the entire
world.  Levi says, he even hastens the redemption.  Torah is greater than korbonos.

Menaseh:  From where do we know this?

Oded:  Hashem made a vow that the sin of the house of
Aili cannot be atoned through sacrifices.

Menaseh:  What was the sin?

Oded:  The sons of Aili abused their power as Kohanim
which angered Hashem.

Menaseh:  How were they punished?

Oded:  Aili and his 2 sons died and Hashem decreed
upon the entire house of Aili for all future generations that they would be
poor and die young.

Menaseh:  How do you see from this that Torah learning
is greater than korbonos?

Oded:  The posuk states that the sin of Aili will not
be atoned through korbonos.  The Gemora derives from this posuk that the sin
cannot be atoned though korbonos but can be atoned through words of Torah. 
This is also echoed in the words of the Zohar.

Menaseh:  What does the Zohar say?

Oded:  Anyone who exert himself in Torah learning,
it’s considered as if he offered all the korbonos in the world and he will have
many seats reserved for him in the world to come.

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7 Conditions

    1. You either saw it yourself or heard about it, and
      subsequently verified its veracity.
    2. You must not rush to judgment, but rather weigh carefully
      whether what he/she did is indeed halachicly considered a sin
    3. Before you go public, you must first attempt to gently
      rebuke him/her.
    4. You must be careful not to exaggerate the transgression.
    5. You intentions must be for the right reasons and not out
      of hatred for the individual or for personal gain.
    6. If you can bring about the same benefit some other way
      with out publicizing this fellow’s transgression, then you may not go
    7. Publicizing his/her transgression mustn’t cause him/her
      more damage than would be due to him/her in Beis Din.




1) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 8 Par. 1

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


Sefer Shmiras Haloshon Sha’ar Hatorah Chap. 2

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