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

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Shmiras HaLashon ט"ז שבט - Shevat 16 - One-Hundred-and-Thirty-Fifth Day

© 2007 by Robert Lepor. All rights reserved.

For some, the cause of [their] having become habituated in the sin [of Lashon HaRa] results [from the sin of Lashon HaRa being] disregarded. In other words, [the person] notices that [the laws of Lashon HaRa are] disregarded by many people who do not consider [Lashon HaRa] to be a sin at all, due to our numerous sins. Therefore, [since the prohibition against Lashon HaRa has been forsaken by many people, those individuals who note this] have become lax in guarding [themselves from involvement in the sin of Lashon HaRa].

[The following is] a [piece of] advice [for these people who view the sin of Lashon HaRa as having been forsaken], that [being that] he should consider [that] if he and the people of his city would be sick, with one of the types of severe sicknesses, chas v’shalom, HaShem should protect us [from such sicknesses, the person would try to find a doctor to cure him of this illness. If the the situation would reach] the point that all of the doctors of his city would grow weary [in] seeking out a remedy and cure for this [sickness, he would exert great effort to find a cure for his sickness. Subsequent to seeking out a cure for his great illness], word got around [town] that a great, world-renowned doctor arrived in the city, [this doctor being] unsurpassed in his success-rate of curing the hopelessly ill person to his [original state of] health, [to the extent] that no hint of his sickness would be evident. Would [this desperately ill person] be lax [and thereby refrain from taking the initiative to] immediately send for this doctor to come and see him [in him in his] troublesome state, [especially now] that he is lying on a sickbed, [for] perhaps [this doctor] will [be able to] heal him from his illness?” If one the friends of [the desperately ill person] would inquire of him [by asking], ‘Why are you more enthusiastic than the other [ill people in pursuing this world-renowned doctor]?’, you would definitely answer him [as follows]: ‘[You are the greatest] fool in the world! [Concerning] a matter that my life depends upon, even if there [is only] a small doubt [that a cure will be found for my illness], I do not need to [pay heed] to others [who are lax in finding a remedy to their illnesses]! How much more so [is my zeal appropriate] concerning this doctor, regarding whom we already personally familiar and who is world-renowned for his wondrous cures, for he heals all of those who are hopelessly sick. Would I abandon my life for the sake of these fools who do not have pity on their own lives?” [Since the above is the case of] matters [concerning] the body, [there is] all the more reason [for us to respond with zeal regarding] matters [concerning] the soul. [As important as it is for us to guard our physical health, it is all the more important for us to act for our spiritual wellbeing], as it is known to us, that one who guards his tongue from evil [speech] will merit to live everlasting life in The World to Come, as [Dovid HaMelech writes in “Tehillim”], “Come children,… who is the man who desires life…?”[1] (Tehillim: 34; 12 – 13) Who is a more trusted doctor than our Master, King David, Alav HaShalom [who taught us of the importance of guarding one’s speech for one who desires life]? In contrast, Heaven Forbid, [if one were to involve himself in the sin of Lashon HaRa, he will consequently] never [attain] a cure for his malady, and in this world [he will experience] afflictions and pain due to this sin [of Lashon HaRa], as it says earlier, in the name of Midrash [quoted in the eighth chapter of “Sha’ar HaZichirah”][2]. How much more so, should [the person] not focus on other [people who involve themselves in Lashon HaRa and thereby show no compassion for themselves, for, due to this sin, suffering befalls such people in this world and in The World to Come].

[1] The full text of the quotes is as follows:

“Come children, listen to me, I shall teach you concerning fear of HaShem. Who is the man who desires life to see [that which is] good? Guard your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking deceit.” (Tehillim: 34; 12 – 14)

[2] This teaching is found in Midrash Aggados B
reishis, [as follows]: “In future times, everyone aside from the snake will be healed. Similarly, the one who speaks Lashon HaRa against his fellow will not be healed in future times, as it says, “If the snake bites because it was not charmed, and there is no gain for the speaker of Lashon HaRa.” (Koheles: 10; 11) For a futher discussion related to this teaching, see the “thirty-eighth day” of “Shmiras HaLashon in chapter 8 of “Sha’ar HaZechirah”.

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