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Loshon horah about
- Is it permissible to speak loshon horah about someone who
is ignorant of Torah and mitzvos?
- Absolutely not! One who observes what he/she knows but is
an ignoramus, retains the status of “a fellow Jew” and therefore, the
prohibition of speaking loshon horah applies to him/her as well.
Loshon horah about
a Torah scholar
- Is it a greater to sin to speak loshon horah about a Torah
- Yes. When you speak loshon horah about a Torah scholar,
not only are you degrading the person, you are also degrading the Torah which
he represents. The punishment for degrading a Torah scholar is very
severe. It is an even greater sin if the Torah scholar is the Rabbi of
his community who people consult with for their halachic and personal
dilemmas. As a result of your slander, people will refrain from consulting
with the Rabbi, resulting in diminished service of Hashem; a very severe
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, merits a portion in the
world to come.
Menaseh: Don’t we say that every morning after
bircas HaTorah? “These are the things that a person eats their fruit in this
world and the principle remains for him in the world to come… and Torah
learning is equal to them all.”
Oded: That’s correct! As a matter of fact, the
Gemora in Bava Mitzia states, based on a posuk in Iyov, the following: “Anyone
who makes himself small over the words of Torah in this world, will become
great in the world to come. Anyone who makes himself a slave over the words of
Torah in this world will, be free in the world to come”.
Menaseh: Can you explain what it means to make
yourself small over the words of Torah?
Oded: Sure! Making yourself small over the words of
Torah, means learning from anyone whom you can and not thinking that it’s
beneath you to learn from that person.
Menaseh: I guess it makes sense that in the world to
come he merits greatness, measure for measure. But what does it mean when it
says: “anyone who makes himself a slave over words of Torah”?
Oded: Making yourself a slave over the words of
Torah means subjugating yourself to the words of Torah as if they rule over
Menaseh: And the reward for that is that you are
free in the world to come. From what are you free?
Oded: From forces that might rule over you for sins
which you have committed.
If you have any
questions regarding these lessons, feel free to contact Rabbi Faivel Adelman by
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1) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 8 Par. 4
2) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 8 Par. 4
Sefer Shmiras Haloshon Sha’ar HaTorah Chap. 2