Lesson 69c Telling on a relative – Telling a non-Jew about a Jew
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horah to a relative about another relative
- May I tell on my brother to my father?
- Generally not. The fact that he’s your relative or that
you’re telling his relative, does not mitigate the sin of loshon horah.
If you want to tell your father so that your father may rebuke him, you
must first attempt to rebuke him yourself. However, if you know that your
rebuke will not be effective and you feel that your father’s can be; then
you may tell your father without first rebuking him on your own.
horah to a non-Jew about a Jew
- Is it permissible to tell loshon horah about a Jew to a
- Absolutely not! Telling loshon horah about a Jew to a
non-Jew is an even greater sin than telling a fellow Jew. Aside from the
terrible sin of degrading the honor of a Jew and desecrating the name of
Hashem, you are also causing greater damage to the victim. When you tell
loshon to a Jew about another Jew, he won’t necessarily accept your word
as fact. However, if, for example, you tell a non-Jew that a certain Jew
is involved in shady business practices, he will immediately accept it as
truth and is likely to gleefully publicize what you told him about your
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: It is quoted in the name of the Zohar that if
even one congregation would properly keep sholom (peace), it is possible to
merit the coming of Mashiach.
Menaseh: That’s a powerful concept! That means that
we all have the ability to bring the Mashiach just by being peaceful with one
Oded: Correct! Each individual that strengthens
himself in this, will have a portion in the building the Beis HaMikdash.
Menaseh: How to we go about doing this?
Oded: It is impossible to attain peace unless we
first guard ourselves from the sins of wanton hatred and loshon horah.
Menaseh: So by working on removing sinas chinom
and loshon horah we can bring Mashiach and have a portion in building the Beis
Oded: Correct! Imagine if we had permission to
rebuild the Beis HaMikdash and funds were needed for the project; wouldn’t
every single Jew give what ever he could towards the project?
Menaseh: I would imagine so.
Oded: Well, we don’t really need money to build the
Beis HaMikdash all we need is to distance ourselves from sinas chinom and loshon
horah and cling to the midda of sholom. By doing so, we can repair the damage
of these sins and merit the coming of Mashiach and the building of the Beis
Menaseh: I imagine that it would be a tremendous
honor to have a portion in such an important project.
Oded: It certainly would! In the time of the
Nechemia, the names of those who assisted in rebuilding the walls of
Yerushalayim were recorded for posterity, how much more those who assist in
rebuilding the Beis HaMikdash.
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1) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 8 Par. 11
2) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 8 Par. 12
Sefer Shmiras Haloshon Section 2 Chap. 7