Shabbos in the Parashah
This week is referred to as Shabbos Nachamu, the Shabbos of Consolation. One must wonder where the consolation is. We just finished mourning the destruction of the Bais HaMikdash and our long and bitter exile, and now we are accepting consolation? How can we understand this apparent paradox? Let us take a closer look at destruction and exile and then we can begin to better understand comfort and consolation. When one witnesses destruction and devastation, what is the initial reaction? Certainly one feels that if he has reached this point, there is no hope left for him. Yet, it is obvious that such thinking is not rational, because if something was truly destroyed, there would really be no point in mourning its loss. We are accustomed to mourning and grieving as if there is no return, but those who acknowledge the truth of this transient world know that nothing is ever really lost, and one cannot mourn something forever. One is commanded to mourn and grieve over the loss of a loved one, but as the Ramban writes in Toras HaAdam, we all know that it has been decreed that every man who enters this world must die. This being the case, why do we cry when someone passes away? The Ramban offers us a brilliant insight into the purpose of creation. If Adam HaRishon, the first man, had not sinned by eating from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Bad, he would have lived for eternity. Once HaShem decreed that man had to die, we cry for the lost potential of every person. Let us apply this idea to the mourning that we experience for the Bais HaMikdash and the exile. When we sit down on the floor on Tisha B’Av and mourn for our loss, we are in essence mourning for the lost potential of the Jewish People. We lament the fact that we can not experience closeness to HaShem, offer sacrifices to Him, and be in a constant state of awareness that HaShem controls everything in the world. How can we be consoled in this state of mourning? We must draw a parallel to the person who is in mourning for a loved one. The one closest to him has just passed on and immediately people come and console him. Do we deem this sort of consolation to be odd? We know that not only is this behavior acceptable, it is actually required by the Shulchan Aruch, the Jewish Code of Law. Similarly, after lamenting our current state of affairs in the exile, we are required to be comforted. Who, however, can comfort us? Scripture itself provides the answer to this question. It is said (Eicha 2:13) mah aideich mah adameh loch habas Yerushalayim mah ashveh loch vanachmeich besulas bas Tziyon ki gadol kayam shivreich mi yirpah loch, with what shall I bear witness for you? To what can I compare you, O daughter of
Shabbos in the Zemiros
Ribbon kol HaOlamim
Published in 5401 (1641)
Melech abir, King Who is mighty. We find that the word abir denotes angels, as it is said (Tehillim 78:25) lechem abirim achal ish, humans ate the bread of angels, and the Gemara (Yoma 75b) states that this refers to the manna that the Jewish People ate in the Wilderness. In a simple sense, angels are referred to as abirim because they are mighty. Alternatively, angels have wings, which are referred to in Hebrew as eivarim. Perhaps we refer to HaShem as abir, the mighty one, because HaShem towers above all and Hashem, so to speak, “flies” above us with His outstretched and mighty wings that protect us.
Shabbos in Tefillah
Tehillah visiferes, praise and splendor. Here again we can interpret this attribute of HaShem vis a vis the Jewish People. It is said (Devarim 26:19) ulisitcho elyon al kol hagoyim asher asah lishilah ulisheim ulisifares vilhiyoscho am kadosh laHashem Elokecha kasher diber, and to make you supreme over all the nations that He made, of praise, for renown, and for splendor, so that you will be a holy people to HaShem, your G-d, as He spoke. When HaShem makes us supreme over the nations, it is for praise, renown and for splendor, which implies for our praise and splendor. Yet, we know that ultimately everything that HaShem created is for His glory. Thus, our praise and splendor is really HaShem’s glory.
Many years ago, the first Bobover Rebbe zt”l found himself in
Shabbos in History
Reb Moshe Shternbuch Shlita writes that there are two distinct aspects of Shabbos. On the one hand, there is the Shabbos of rest and relaxation; of song, hearty meals, and time with friends. On the other hand, there is the complex side of Shabbos: The laws, the details, and the rigidity which (under rare circumstances) says it is necessary to allow one’s house to burn down rather than to extinguish a fire on Shabbos. The Shabbos full of halachic minutiae, which the Gemara aptly describes as “mountains hanging on a hair.” The Jews that left
The Gemara states that there are twenty-four instances in Scripture where the Kohanim are referred to as Leviim. We have mentioned numerous times that Reb Tzadok HaKohen from
Shabbos in Halacha
One cannot add liquid condiments like ketchup, mustard and mayonnaise to a hot kli rishon. Although these items have been cooked previously, they are nonetheless subject to the prohibition of re-cooking cold liquids. One can, however, use dry pre-cooked seasonings like sugar and salt on hot solid foods, even in a kli rishon, as one is not prohibited from re-cooking dry items. This ruling, however, only applies to a kli rishon that has been removed from the belch. One is never allowed to add seasoning to a pot while it is on a flame or on a hot blech.
Shabbos in Numbers and Words
In this week’s parashah it is said (Devarim 5:12) shamor es yom HaShabbos likadsho, safeguard the Shabbos day to sanctify it. How does one safeguard the Shabbos day? When one studies the laws of Shabbos during the week, he can enter into Shabbos with the knowledge that the Shabbos will be safeguarded. The word shamor in mispar katan, digit sum, equals 15, and 1+5=6, which alludes to the six days of the week.
Shabbos: Ta’am HaChaim Vaeschanan-Nachamu 5767
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in loving memory of Ephraim’s grandmother, Mrs. Sara Reich ob”m
Sara bas Yechiel Tzvi, Niftarah 17 Av
Have a wonderful and delightful Shabbos.
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