Chasidic Insights

on the Weekly Parsha

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by Zvi Akiva Fleisher

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Ch. 21, v. 1: "Emor el haKohanim bnei Aharon" - Tell the Kohanim that they are "bnei Aharon," and that they should act accordingly. The gemara Yoma 71b relates that usually right after Yom Kippur great crowds would escort the Kohein Godol back to his home after a very full day of service in the Beis Hamikdosh. One year the crowds spotted Shmi'oh and Avtalion leaving the Mikdosh area and they left the Kohein Godol and escorted Shmi'oh and Avtalion. The Kohein Godol, smarting from this, made a snide remark to these two great sages, pointing out their humble origins, as they were descendants of converts. Shmi'oh and Avtalion remarked, "May the sons of converts come in peace who behave as the sons of Aharon should, ahead of the sons of Aharon who don't." (Chasam Sofer)

Ch. 23, v. 2: "Mo'adei Hashem asher tik'r'u osom" - Celebrating Shabbos requires no "mikro kodesh," calling for sanctity. It is like a son who needs no invitation to join his father the king for a royal feast. Yom Tov requires an invitation. It is like the king's son's friends. They may not just come along with the king's son to the royal feast. This requires an invitation. (Holy Zohar)

Ch. 23, v. 2: "Mikro'ei kodesh" - The Yomim Tovim call out to a person to sanctify himself. (Chidushei HoRi"m)

Alternatively, one should read about the Yom Tov so that he will fully appreciate its message. (Nirreh li)

Ch. 23, v. 15: "Usfartem lochem .. t'mimos" - Lochem connotes for your benefit, as in "lech l'cho," upon which Rashi comments, "l'tovos'cho l'haanos'cho," for your good for your benefit. "Usfartem," and purify yourselves, from the word source "sapir," and it will be for your benefit in your preparation for the receiving of the Holy Torah. This is why the verse ends with "t'mimos," that the purification process shall be thorough and complete. (Haksav V'hakaboloh)

Ch. 23, v. 27: "Ach be'ossor lachodesh ha'zeh" - The words "ach" and "ha'zeh" seem superfluous. These words teach us that we should view Yom Kippur as happening only, "ach," this one time, "ha'zeh," and not as an annual occurrence. With this outlook we would surely repent fully. (Beis Osher)

Ch. 23, v. 32: "B'sishoh lachodesh" - Even though the Torah gives us the 9th of Tishrei as the day to afflict our souls, our Rabbis teach that the intention of the verse is to eat and drink on the 9th of Tishrei (gemara Yoma 81b). Indeed, the cantellation for these two words is "mahapach pashta," the opposite of the simple straightforward. (Rabbi Gavriel Gestetner Gava"d of Sambathely)

Ch. 23, v. 40: "Pri eitz hodor" - A chosid of the Holy Admor Rabbi Yechezkeil Shraga of Shinov boastfully announced that he had the most beautiful esrog in town. The Holy Admor told him that his esrog was posul, not valid. The chosid was incredulous and brought his esrog to the Rebbe and asked what was wrong with it. The Rebbe took it and removed the pitum, which was cleverly held together with the rest of the esrog with a very fine pin. The Rebbe said, "I was sure that your esrog was posul because the esrog brings to humility, not boastfulness, as indicated by the first letters of 'Al T'vi'eini Regel Gaavoh,' whose letters spell esrog."

Ch. 23, v. 40: "Kapos t'morim" - This is the lulov, spelled Lamed-Vov-Lamed-Veis, the first letters as "V'ta'heir Li'beineu L'ov'd'cho Be'emes." (M'oroh Shel Torah)

Ch. 24, v. 19: "V'ish ki yi'tein moom baamiso kaasher ossoh kein yei'osseh lo" - If one criticizes another, saying that he has a blemish, just as he has done to that person will be done to him, i.e. he will also be criticized for having the same shortcoming, as per the dictum "kol haposeil b'moomo foseil" (gemara Kidushin 70a). (Rabbi Y.Y. Tarlavski)


See also Sedrah Selections and Oroh V'Simchoh

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