Lesson 68c Loshon horah about the dead – Loshon horah to spouse

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Lesson #68c

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.



Speaking loshon
horah about one who has passed on

  1. Am I allowed to speak loshon horah about people who have
    passed on?
  1. The early sages enacted a prohibition against speaking
    loshon horah about one who has passed on.  It is an even greater sin to
    speak loshon horah about a Torah scholar who has passed on, and even worse,
    to degrade his Torah thoughts.


Speaking loshon
horah to a spouse

  1. Is it permissible for me to speak to my spouse about people
    if it involves loshon horah?
  1. A spouse is no different than anyone else regarding the
    laws of loshon horah.  It is forbidden to speak loshon horah to her unless
    there is a specific purpose.  For example, if your wife runs the shop and
    she is selling on credit to a customer who you know is dishonest, you may
    warn her not to do so; even if it’s only a suspicion.  However, if it’s
    only a suspicion, you should be careful to emphasis that it’s only a
    suspicion and not fact. 


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:  When Shlomo Hamelech married the daughter of
Paroh and violated the mitzvah of not taking too many wives, the letter yud
from the word “yarbeh” came before Hashem and said: “A commandment that
is partially violated is in essence completely violated.  If Shlomo annuls me
who will support me?”  Hashem responded: “Shlomo and a thousand like him should
be annulled and not one letter of my Torah should be annulled.”

Menaseh:  That is a very strong reaction!

Oded:  Hashem reacts very strongly when even only one
item in the Torah is neglected.  And if you think about which mitzvah is
neglected, it is the mitzvah of loshon horah.  Those who are ignorant of Torah
have pretty much abandoned that mitzvah.

Menaseh:  And what about those who are knowledgeable
in Torah?

Oded:  Unfortunately, they also don’t view the sin of
loshon horah as seriously as they view other sins.  Imagine if someone
accidentally mixed up kosher meat with non-kosher and ended up eating
non-kosher.  He would be beside himself with anguish and would even fast to
atone for the sin.  All his life he would remember that he once ate
non-kosher.  Contrast that to the sin of loshon horah, or any other speech
related sins, such as verbal abuse, publicly shaming someone, etc.  All these sins
are explicitly spelled out in the Torah.  Imagine if one would even bring about
all these sins simultaneously by igniting a dispute, which commonly leads to
loshon horah, rechilus, verbal abuse, shaming, etc.  It probably won’t disturb
him that much.  And even if he reflects on it later and has regret over what he
did, it won’t move him to the extent that he would go ask a Rabbi what to do to
rectify the sin as he would if he ate non-kosher.  And, after only a few days
the matter will be completely forgotten.  All this is a clear indication that
the sin of loshon horah is not taken as seriously as other sins, even amongst people
who are knowledgeable in Torah.

Menaseh:  So what’s the bottom line here?

Oded:  The point is that those who are knowledgeable
in Torah and have the ability to know the laws of speech related sins, have an even
greater responsibility to strengthen themselves against these sins so that
these mitzvos won’t be entirely abandoned.

If you have any
questions regarding these lessons, feel free to contact Rabbi Faivel Adelman clicking here.


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1) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 8 Par. 9

2) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 8 Par. 10


Sefer Shmiras Haloshon Section 2 Chap. 7

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