Lesson 8c Disparaging a drosha
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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.
Revealing how you
- I am a member of our Shul’s board. We recently voted on a
highly controversial communal matter. I was in the minority. After the
meeting, a community member approached me and asked how I voted. Is it permissible
for me to tell him that I voted in line with his interests but was
- You may not reveal how you voted. If he is made aware
that some people took his side, it will increase his hatred towards those
who voted against his interests and would therefore be considered
- We previously learned that if something was said in front
of 3 people, it’s permissible for those who heard it to share what they’ve
heard with others, since word is bound to get out. There were certainly
more than three people at our board meeting. Why then would it be
forbidden for me to reveal how I voted?
- You are asking a good question. The answer is a bit
technical so please bear with me. It is often difficult to arrive at the
truth, alone. For that reason, courts and communal boards are generally
composed of numerous people. By working through the issues together, the
chances of arriving at the truth are much greater. It is perfectly fine
for each individual to have their own opinion; however, once a vote is
taken and the majority has decided on one position, that position should
be considered by all as closer to the truth than the minority opinion. Therefore,
while it’s true that we may assume that word will get out that there was a
vote and the majority out ruled the minority, it is not necessarily true
that people will find out that the minority is still sticking to its
position. Therefore, It is wrong to tell him that you voted according to
his interests but were outvoted, for the following 2 reasons:
- Since the majority ruled against you, their opinion is
considered closer to the truth and therefore, there is no reason for you
to mention what you originally thought, other than to arouse hard
- Even if he were to find out that people originally sided
with him, he will not necessarily know that they are still maintaining
their positions. When you tell him how you were on his side but were outvoted,
you are indicating that you still agree with him and as a result he will
feel more hatred towards those who went against his interests.
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: Yesterday, you asked, since the second
paragraph of Krias shema commences by addressing people who Love Hashem with
all their heart and soul, it is odd for it to continue by warning them to be on
guard lest their heart be seduced and they turn and go serve other deities.
Oded: In order to explain this anomaly, I would like
to suggest the following. It says in the second paragraph of Shema: “and to
serve Him with all your heart”. Our sages teach us that service of the heart refers
to prayer. That is why it states subsequently: “Guard yourselves, lest your
hearts be seduced”; that is to say that your evil inclination might seduced
your heart by saying: “why do I and my son need to toil in Torah? We love
Hashem and daven every day, isn’t that enough? Nothing will happen if I don’t
learn Torah.” For that reason the posuk declares “you will come to serve other
deities”. As we mentioned before, a Jew without Torah is like a fish out of
water. Just as a fish out of water will be cut off from its source of life in
a very short time; so to, a Jew without Torah will be cut of from his spiritual
life source and is not very far from going and serving other deities.
Menaseh: Can you explain the flow of the rest of the
paragraph based on you interpretation?
Oded: Sure. The paragraph continues “you should
place these words of mine on your hearts”. The message here is, let these
words sink deep in your hearts, a person who turns away from Torah study will
in the end come to serve other deities. Therefore, “And you should teach them
(i.e.words of Torah) to your sons”. In other words, don’t be complacent with
the fact that he davens 3 times a day. The paragraph concludes by stating: “So
that your days and the days of your sons will be long on the land…”, as our
sages teach us, the exile will only be gathered in through the merit of Torah.
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1) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 2 Par.
2) Sefer Chofetz Chaim Sec. 1 Chap. 2 Be’er Mayim
Sefer Shmiras Haloshon Sha’ar HaTorah Chap. 10