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Parshas Re'eh - Chamishi with Rashi

Moshe Rabbeinu reminds the Yidden about some of the mitzvos they will do in Eretz Yisroel!

When plants grow in your field, you need to give Maaser! There are a few kinds of MaaserMaaser Rishon (to the Leviim), Maaser Sheini (to eat in Yerushalayim), and Maaser Oni (that needs to be given to the poor).

In today’s Chumash, Moshe Rabbeinu teaches the Yidden how to make sure that all of these Maasros are given properly.



108 - 112

Today’s shiur Tehillim is kapitelach Kuf-Ches to Kuf-Yud-Beis.

In Kapitel Kuf-Yud-Alef, the pesukim have every letter of the Alef-Beis! The first half of the posuk has one letter, and the second half has the next letter. (The last two pesukim have 3 parts, with 3 letters.)

Dovid Hamelech says: “Koach Maasav Higid Le’Amo, Lases Lahem Nachalas Goyim.” (Do you see how the first part of the posuk starts with Chof, and the second half starts with Lamed?) “Hashem told Yidden the great things He did, so He could give them a land that the Goyim lived in.”

What does this mean?

The first Rashi in Chumash tells us that Hashem made the Torah start with — not mitzvos — but the story of how Hashem made the world. This way, if the Goyim get mad that we took Eretz Yisroel, we will tell them that HASHEM made Eretz Yisroel, and Hashem let the Goyim live there, but then He wanted the Yidden to have it, and so He gave it to us!



Igeres Hakodesh Siman Zayin

In today’s Tanya we learn what it means when we say “Ashreinu Mah Tov Chelkeinu!”

We learned that the chayus of Hashem comes into the world through each of the many mitzvos and halachos of the Torah. We also learned that the neshamos of Yidden are split up into as many parts as there are halachos! The chayus of Hashem comes through the Torah to each neshama.

Yesterday we said that Adam Harishon included all of the neshamos. Today we see that Yaakov Avinu fixed up the Cheit Eitz Hadaas of Adam Harishon. So he also became like Adam Harishon, and the neshamos of all of the Yidden afterwards come from Yaakov Avinu! (Yidden are called Bnei Yisrael, the children of Yaakov!)

Just like Yaakov Avinu includes ALL of the neshamos, he also includes the whole Torah in his neshama!

Each of our own neshamos are a little piece (a chelek) of the neshama of Yaakov Avinu, and there is a little chelek of Torah that gives chayus to our neshama.

When can we feel OUR chayus of Hashem through our chelek of Torah?

During davening!

That’s what it means when we say “Ashreinu, Mah Tov Chelkeinu!” “We are so fortunate, our chelek is so good!” We are talking about our chelek of Torah and mitzvos which connects us to Hashem, that we can feel during davening!

IY”H tomorrow we will learn about the next part, “Umah No’im Goraleinu.”



Chof-Gimmel Menachem Av

Today we are going to learn something about how special our neshama is!

The Alter Rebbe teaches us in Tanya that our neshama is a “Chelek Eloka Mimaal Mamosh!” — “A part of Hashem from above — Mamosh!”

What does “mamosh” mean?

It means FOR REAL! Like you can touch it!

But that seems like two opposites! We said it’s from Hashem above, so it’s very Ruchnius’dik, and we’re also saying that it’s Mamosh — it’s like Gashmius!

When the Rebbe Rashab learned this with the Frierdiker Rebbe (when he was 11), he explained that the reason why he says both of these things is because that this is the whole point of the neshama! Even though it’s SO Ruchnius’dik, it’s still able to do its Shlichus and make the Gashmius heilig!

Some people think that being a Yid is using the neshama just for learning and davening. But Chassidus teaches us how the neshama of a Yid needs to and is able to serve Hashem with EVERYTHING we do — even eating and drinking and playing!



Shiur #35 - Mitzvas Asei #215

Today in Sefer Hamitzvos we learn the same mitzvah again — (Mitzvas Asei #215) that every Jewish boy needs to have a Bris Milah. A father has a mitzvah to make sure his son has one.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Lech Lecha: הִמּוֹל לָכֶם כָּל זָכָר
The details are explained in Mesechta Shabbos perek Yud-Tes and Mesechta Yevamos perek Daled.

We also say the beginning of the Rambam’s nusach in davening. (This is one of the places where people who do Sefer Hamitzvos say the exact same thing as those who learn 3 perakim of Rambam!)



Hilchos Milah - Tefillos MiKol Hashana

In today’s Rambam, we learn the halachos about how to do a bris and which brachos to say.

Perek Beis: We are allowed to make a bris on Shabbos, but we need to prepare everything before Shabbos. If we forgot, we need to do the Bris Milah the next day.

Perek Gimmel: We learn the brachos we say when we do a Bris Milah. There is a bracha for the mohel, and a bracha for the father.

Then we end the second sefer of Rambam! As an addition to this sefer, where we learned the halachos of davening, we start reading through the whole davening according to the Rambam’s siddur.

If you pay attention, you will see many differences between our nusach and the Rambam’s nusach!



Hilchos Talmud Torah - Perek Vov

In Perek Vov, we learn that we need to show kavod to every Talmid Chochom, because of the Torah they learned! The Rambam teaches us that we also need to show kavod to ANYONE who is very old — even if they aren’t Jewish.

It is so important to show kavod for a Talmid Chochom, that if someone doesn’t, they are separated from the rest of the Yidden by being put into cherem until they do teshuvah. The Rambam also tells us the other 23 things that might make someone deserve to be put into cherem.



Shabbos Mevorchim Elul

In Likutei Diburim, the Frierdiker Rebbe once spoke about how the city of Lubavitch would be different in Chodesh Elul.

In many of the Rebbe’s farbrengens before Chodesh Elul, the Rebbe would speak about this famous sicha.

The Frierdiker Rebbe said that starting after Shabbos Nachamu, they would already start learning extra after davening Maariv. By the time Shabbos Mevorchim Elul came, you could already “smell” Elul, and feel the wind of teshuvah blowing in the air. Everyone was waiting to start saying L’Dovid Hashem Ori and to hear the shofar blown.

The first sound of the shofar was like an announcement that the gates of Rachmonus were open, since Elul is Chodesh HoRachamim!

In Elul everyone felt that they needed to change, to become better. Lying in bed in Lubavitch, early in the morning, you could already hear the shofar being blown at the early minyan. People would feel bad that they were still sleeping, when there was so much to be done! They would think about how special these days are — the days when Moshe Rabbeinu stood on Har Sinai begging Hashem to forgive the Yidden. Nobody wanted to waste these special days of Yemei Ratzon!

They would jump out of bed and run quickly to shul, which was already full of Yidden saying Tehillim, learning, and davening.

Once in a farbrengen of Shabbos Nachamu, the Rebbe spoke about this sicha of the Frierdiker Rebbe. The Rebbe explained that this was not just a story about another city! The city of Lubavitch was like a light for the world, showing and teaching the way things should be. The Frierdiker Rebbe was showing us how we should prepare for Chodesh Elul, in every time and in every place.

See Likkutei Dibburim vol. 1, p. 230 (English), and Farbrengen Parshas Va’eschanan 5745


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Ana B'Koach

Another reason why we say Ana B’koach here in davening is to ask Hashem for Moshiach!

After we spoke about all of the daily korbanos in the Beis Hamikdash, we say to  Hashem that we miss the Beis Hamikdash, where we can do the avodah the way it should be done.

In the words of Ana B’koach, we are asking Hashem to take us out of Golus and bring us into Geulah!

There is a beautiful translation of this tefillah into Yiddish, which shows how every line is asking Hashem to bring Moshiach! See Hakriyah Vehakedusha, Tamuz Tof-Shin-Alef.



Kavod for Sefer Torah

One of the ways we show our kavod for the Sefer Torah is to be melaveh, to escort the Sefer Torah.

If the Torah passes by a person (like if he is sitting on the end seat) on its way to the Aron Kodesh, he should join in and go along with it until it reaches the Aron Kodesh. If it didn’t pass by him, a person should still follow it with his eyes, by looking at the Sefer Torah until it reaches where it belongs.

In a very big shul (like 770), a person shouldn’t push to join the line of people going with Sefer Torah. There are so many people there, you will probably end up squishing someone or pushing them. That wouldn’t be kavod for the Sefer Torah at all!

But if someone is in a smaller shul and the Torah passes by him, he should join along with the Torah and bring it to the place it belongs.

See Shulchan Aruch siman 149, and Piskei Teshuvos vol. 2, p. 208

לעילוי נשמת הרה״ח ר׳ דניאל יצחק ע״ה בן ר׳ אפרים שי׳ מאסקאוויץ
שליח כ"ק אדמו"ר נשיא דורנו למדינת אילינוי



Fifteen Neviim About Moshiach

In one of the nevuos of the Navi Hoshea, Hashem says that He bought the Yidden with 15 silver coins.

The Metzudas Dovid explains that this is talking about Hashem’s promise about the Geulah! Hashem sent His promise about Moshiach to the Yidden through fifteen Neviim who clearly speak about the Geulah:

1) Dovid Hamelech (in many kapitelach of Tehillim)
2) Yeshaya
3) Yirmiyah
4) Yechezkel
5) Hosheia
6) Yoel
7) Amos
8) Ovadiah
9) Micha
10) Chavakuk
11) Tzefania
12) Daniel
13) Chagi
14) Zechariah
15) Malachi

See Hosheia perek Gimmel posuk Beis with Metzudas Dovid

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