Please Learn in the Merit of:

Please learn for the merit of a complete recovery for the following individuals:

Ya'akov Don ben Esther Ahuvah Sharona
Avraham Yishayahu ben Aviva
Perel Leah bas Sima

Please learn in the merit/memory of Eyal ben Uriel, Gil-Ad Michael ben Ophir, Ya'akov Naftali ben Avraham, and Alter Aryeh Leib Reuven ben Sima

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Shmiras HaLashon י"א טבת - Teves 11 - One-Hundred-and-First Day

© 2006 by Robert Lepor. All rights reserved.

Chapter 8

Wherein Shall be Explained [of] the Attribute of Patience, and That Due to [The Adoption of] This [Attribute], one is Pardoned for his Sins

Furthermore, [in addition to the attribute of judging one’s fellow Jew favorably, the person] should be exceedingly careful to accustom himself in [the performance] of the attribute of patience, [to the extent] that he will be reconciled to all that will occur to him, as is [taught] in Avos D’Rabbi Nosson (Chapter 41, 11), [as follows]: “Accustom [yourself] to accept the troublesome [situations], and be forgiving for your [having] been affronted.”[1] Thereby, [by accustoming oneself in the attribute of patience], it will be easy for him [to acquire] the attribute of Guarding the Tongue [from forbidden speech], for if it is not so [that he has accustomed himself to the attribute of patience, either] he will need to constantly strengthen himself over his [evil] inclination, [in order to] not go and relate to others [concerning] that which occurred between him and a given individual, or [he will need] to be careful [regarding] in what manner to relate [the given information concerning a certain affair], (as is explained in [sefer] “Chofetz Chaim”, in volume 1, klal 10, sifim 13 – 15).[2] At times, [the impatient person] will be victorious [over] his [evil] inclination, and at times, the evil [inclination] will be victorious over him. [By contrast], even if one were to insult [a patient person] to his face, he will not respond to them at all, and he will know that everything [that occurred to him, comes] from HaShem, as a result of his sins, and [it is truly] his sins that have led him to be insulted.

Once he will truly [come to] accept the judgment upon himself, [concluding that he has suffered insult or shame as a result of his own sin, then] The Holy One, Blessed is He, will definitely raise up [this person’s] prominence[3] in this world and in The World to Come, due to this [individual’s involvement in the attribute of patience. This follows that which] we find [in sefer “Shmuel II”] regarding King David, Alav HaShalom, at the time that Shimi ben Geira cursed him and threw dirt at him, and the servants of David wanted to [act zealously to defend David’s] honor, [in the face] of this [dishonorable act that Shimi exhibited towards David. However], David did not allow them [to act zealously against Shimi, on behalf of his honor], and he [instead] accepted the judgment upon himself, when he said, “...HaShem [instructed] him to curse [me]...” (Shmuel II: 16; 10) [In reference to this incident], our Sages of Blessed Memory have said, that at that moment, David merited to become the fourth of the legs of [HaShem’s Divine] Chariot.

[1] The teaching from Avos D’Rabbi Nosson, states as follows (in accordance with the text of the GR”A):

“[Rabbi Yihuda ben Teima] used to say, “Serve [HaShem] out of love, and love the [performance of] all [of] the mitzvos. If you performed [an act involving] a little bit of evil, you should consider it in your as [as if it was a] great evil. If you did an [act involving a] great good, it shall be in your eyes [as if it was] a little bit [of good]… Become accustomed to accept the suffering [that may come your way], and pardon [those who have] insulted you.

[2] In this section of seferChofetz Chaim”, the Chofetz Chaim writes that in particular instances, a person may be permitted to relate information that would otherwise be prohibited under the prohibition of “Lashon HaRa”. Such instances would include accurately relating a given individual’s sins to a person who would stop the sinner from continuing to practice these given sins. However, the Chofetz Chaim notes seven specific criteria that must be fulfilled in order to be permitted to relate the given information about the individual (see sif 14 for the list of the criteria). The Chofetz Chaim warns the reader to be very careful when determining whether the given information is permitted to relate. If one assumes that it is permitted to relate information vis-à-vis the sins of someone without having reviewed these seven criteria, that individual may very well be transgressing the prohibition of forbidden speech.

[3] This literally means that HaShem will raise up the person's position. The phrase "ירומם קרנו" - "yiromeim karno", used by the Chofetz Chaim over here, is based upon the pasuk from sefer "Shmuel I" (2; 10). Mitzudas David explains that "yareim keren m'shicho", in this context refers to Chanah's prayer that her son, who would become the Prophet Shmuel, would be successful in the future, in that the person that Shmuel will annoint to become king (David), will have his kingdom rise in power.

The Mitzudas Tzion notes that the word "קרן" - "keren", which literally means "horn", refers to animals who possess "horns", employing them in acts which display their strength.

Therefore, in our context, the Chofetz Chaim is teaching us that the person who accepts upon himself the insults inflicted upon him by others, will be greatly rewarded by being raised in prominence, both in this world and in The World to Come.