Shabbos in the Parashah
The Gemara (Megillah 5b) states that when Tisha Baav once occurred on Shabbos, Rebbe sought to uproot the day of mourning, declaring that once Tisha Baav is deferred, it is deferred. The Chachamim, however, did not agree with Rebbe. The Koshnitzer Maggid (Parshas Masei) cites the Chozeh from
Shabbos in the Zemiros
Composed by the Arizal, Rabbi Yitzchak Luria
Nezamin la hashta bifsora chadata uvimnarta tavta dinahara al reishin, let us now invite the Shechinah with a newly-laid table And with a well-lit menorah that casts light on all heads. What does it mean that well-lit menorah casts lights on all heads? Perhaps the idea is that during the week we tend to be cloaked in darkness, as we are not prepared to bask in the Divine Presence. On Shabbos, however, when we have purified ourselves in preparation for this Holy Day, the well-lit menorah can cast light on our heads, as the splendor of Shabbos illuminates our beings.
Shabbos in Tefillah
Simicheim bitzeisam visasim bivoam osim bieimah ritzon konam, glad as they go forth and exultant as they return, they do with awe their Creator’s will. Why do we say that the heavenly bodies are glad as they go out and exultant as they return? The Malbim (Yeshaya 35:1) writes that Simcha is an internal joy and Sasson is the external manifestation of that joy. Thus, we can suggest that here we are declaring that the heavenly bodies go forth in a state of “internal” joy and when they return, their “joy” is externally reflected as they have accomplished their mission.
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky writes: The story is told about the Toldos Aharon Rebbe. He was sitting at his table with one of his Chasidim. After a very long while, the sexton brought a bowl of beautiful fruit to the table. It was quite appealing and the Rebbe noticed the sparkle in the eye of the hungry patron. The Rebbe invited his disciple to make a blessing over the shiny crimson apple. The guest declared that such a beautiful fruit was worthy of a beautiful blessing and he resolved to make a blessing with all his heart one truly befitting this marvelous creation. The student stood up, held the apple in both his hands, and spent a few minutes contemplating the delicious fruit that Hashem had created. His eyes sparkled in anticipation, which enthused him even more. Carefully he annunciated every word of the blessing. Swaying back and forth he began, “Boruch Atah, Blessed art Thou . . . “ After what must have been the most eloquent blessing the man ever recited, he bit excitedly into the delicious fruit, and after swallowing, he once again praised the beautiful taste and appearance. The man seemed to revel in his act of spirituality, and the Rebbe knew he had to explain something to him. “You made a beautiful bracha my dear disciple,” he began. “Now I will teach you the difference between your blessing and the blessing of a complete tzaddik.” “You saw the fruit. You wanted to eat it. But alas, one is not allowed to eat a fruit without a blessing over it. And so you made a most beautiful blessing. It is truly commendable. A complete tzaddik, however, does not have his mind set on fruit. He wants to bless Hashem for his beautiful handiwork. But alas, one is not allowed to make that blessing without partaking in the pleasure of His handiwork. And so he looks for a fruit. When he finds the fruit, he is now ready to make the blessing he had long waited to make.” [Reprinted with permission from torah.org]
The Admor Rav Avraham Yehoshua Heshel of Kopichnitz, zt”l was a peer of many of the Gedolim of the past century. He was close with Rav Moshe Feinstein, zt”l, who lived in his neighborhood - the lower
Shabbos in Navi
In this chapter we learn about the tragic punishment that HaShem imposed on Eli and his descendants who would all die young because of the misdeeds of Chafni and Pinchas, the two sons of Eli. It is mind-boggling that there could be Kohanim serving in the Mishkan and acting in such a sinful manner. Yet, were we to contemplate our own actions, we may discover that we are also guilty of such behavior. Every week we invite the Holy Shabbos into our homes, and we are required to respect the Shabbos with appropriate behavior. Yet, there are times when we will speak about matters on Shabbos that are forbidden or certainly not becoming of the spirit of Shabbos. Some people may even read literature on Shabbos that is forbidden on Shabbos and even forbidden during the week (See Orach Chaim 307:16). We have to realize that our homes are a bastion of holiness, and Shabbos is a time when we can enhance the holiness in our lives.
Shabbos in Agadah
The Gemara (Shabbos 119b) enumerates many reasons for the destruction of the Bais HaMikdash. One statement the Gemara makes is that Yerushalayim was destroyed because they desecrated the Shabbos, as it is said (Yechezkel 22:26) umiShabbsosai helimu eineihem vaeichal bisocham, they hid their eyes from My Shabbosos, and I became profaned among them. How does one hide his eyes from Shabbos? We always refer to the aura of Shabbos as the light of Shabbos. Thus, one who does not respect the Shabbos is in a sense hiding his eyes from the light of Shabbos. The way to rectify this sin is to open our eyes and allow the great light of Shabbos to permeate our homes. In the merit of allowing the light of Shabbos into our homes, we should merit the rebuilding of Yerushalayim and the Bais HaMikdash, with the arrival of Moshiach Tzidkienu, speedily, in our days.
Shabbos in Halacha
Very often the need arises on Shabbos to remove a pot that is on a belch for the purpose of taking out food, and then afterward to replace the pot on the blech. On occasion it is also necessary to transfer hot food from one blech to another, i.e. taking the food to a different house within the eruv. These actions, referred to as chazarah, returning, resemble cooking and are thus only allowed under strict conditions.
Shabbos in Numbers and Words
In the past we have written that it is said regarding Shabbos (Shemos 31:16) vishamru vinei Yisroel es haShabbos laasos es haShabbos ledorosam bris olam, the Children of Israel shall observe the Shabbos, to make the Shabbos an eternal covenant for their generations. The first letters of the words laasos es HaShabbos equal in mispar katan, digit sum, 9, and the word Shabbos in mispar katan also equals 9. It is further noteworthy that that the first letters of the words vishamru vinei Yisroel in mispar katan equal 9. Additionally, the first letters of the words vinei Yisroel es haShabbos in mispar katan equal 9. The first letters of the words es haShabbos ledorosam in mispar katan also equal 9. Lastly, the first letters of the words bris olam in mispar katan also equal 9.
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