Baruch Dayan Emmes Meir Yisrael ben Faige is no longer suffering may he have peace in the next world.
Parsha Behar – Bechukosai
Three weeks ago up until that point the Torah had taught us 183 Mitzvos which is quite a bit for former slaves with no education to learn. Then with the double Parsha we added 79 followed by the second largest Mitzvah Parsha with 63. We start out with Mitzvah 326 and end at Mitzvah 361. Thus we almost doubled our knowledge of Mitzvos in 3 weeks or 5 Parshiyos! All of Beresheis was 3 Mitzvos and all of Sefer Bamidbar is 52 which is one more Mitzvah than Kiddushin.
This week we will receive more Mitzvos. We start out at Har Sinai with the laws of Shmita (Sabbatical year). Rashi asks what is the relationship between Shmita and Har Sinai. He replies that just as the laws of Shmita were given at Har Sinai so were all the others. The Ramban disputes that seeing that in Sefer Devarim all the Mitzvos that were mentioned on the plains of the Yarden. Rabbi Avigdor Miller in his writings and lectures tried to square things up before these two Torah Giants. He writes that everything was given at Har Sinai in the Oral Torah during Moshe’s visits of 40 days. It was only written out later.
This makes sense when we go back to educating an adult former slave population who are now nomads with either herds, cattle or both. A person with a family educating his children is happy if he has time to go to a Daf Yomi Shuir or a few Shuirim. So one cannot heap upon the population a ton of Mitzvos and Halachos.
25:1 And the LORD spoke unto Moses in mount Sinai, saying: 2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them: When ye come into the land which I give you, then shall the land keep a Sabbath unto the LORD.
Besides Shabbos Kodesh, the holy land requires a Shabbaton year. As a man must refresh himself so the land must be refreshed. For the land has become depleted of minerals. Even organic fertilizer cannot be spread during Shmita Year.
3 Six years thou shalt sow thy field, and six years thou shalt prune thy vineyard, and gather in the produce thereof. 4 But in the seventh year shall be a Sabbath of solemn rest for the land, a Sabbath unto the LORD; thou shalt neither sow thy field, nor prune thy vineyard. 5 You shall not reap the aftergrowth of your harvest, and you shall not pick the grapes you had set aside [for yourself], [for] it shall be a year of rest for the land.
But the poor may eat and if nobody comes to gather and you have none you can pick. We can give it to the collectors of Beit Din.
The aftergrowth of your harvest: although you did not sow it, but it grew by itself from seeds that [inadvertently] had dropped on [the ground] at the time of harvesting. This is called סְפִיחַ. You shall not reap: to keep it like a regular harvest, but it must be rendered ownerless, [and available] for everyone [to take at will]. — [Be’er Basadeh] The grapes you had set aside [for yourself]: [i.e., those grapes] that you set aside (הִנְזַרְתָּ) and kept people away from them and did not declare them ownerless. You shall not pick: Those, you shall not pick, but [you may pick] from crops declared ownerless. — [Torath Kohanim 25:8]
6 And the Sabbath-produce of the land shall be for food for you: for thee, and for thy servant and for thy maid, and for thy hired servant and for the settler by thy side that sojourn with thee; 7 and for thy cattle, and for the beasts that are in thy land, shall all the increase thereof be for food. 8 And thou shalt number seven Sabbaths of years unto thee, seven times seven years; and there shall be unto thee the days of seven Sabbaths of years, even forty and nine years. 9 Then shalt thou make proclamation with the blast of the horn on the tenth day of the seventh month; in the day of atonement shall ye make proclamation with the horn throughout all your land. 10 And ye shall hallow the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout the land unto all the inhabitants thereof; it shall be a jubilee unto you; and ye shall return every man unto his possession, and ye shall return every man unto his family.
This is the Yovel in which the original crop land returns to the family that owned it but not a house in a city.
17 And ye shall not wrong one another; but thou shalt fear thy God; for I am the LORD your God.
Sometimes it is easy to prey on fools or the weak and it is our duty or fear of G-D that we don’t take advantage.
… 29 And if a man sells a dwelling-house in a walled city, then he may redeem it within a whole year after it is sold; for a full year shall he have the right of redemption. 30 And if it be not redeemed within the space of a full year, then the house that is in the walled city shall be made sure in perpetuity to him that bought it, throughout his generations; it shall not go out in the jubilee.
We do not have walled cities today but any city will apply nowadays.
… 35 And if thy brother be waxen poor, and his means fail with thee; then thou shalt uphold him: as a stranger and a settler shall he live with thee.
Do not take advantage of the poor but support them.
36 Take thou no interest of him or increase; but fear thy God; that thy brother may live with thee. 37 Thou shalt not give him thy money upon interest, nor give him thy victuals for increase.
This applies to a loan to a Jew but not to a non-Jew or a business loan for all of them there is a risk but the if the Jew does not pay you back it is counted as Tzeduka while the other two loans are not. It does not mean that one cannot donate to a non-Jew food, clothing, medicines, toys etc. It only means that one can accept interest on the money. One can also donate to a business on “go fund me” however, that would be in small amounts but thousands of dollars is risky so one can ask for interest.
38 I am the LORD your God, who brought you forth out of the land of Egypt, to give you the land of Canaan, to be your God. 39 And if thy brother be waxen poor with thee, and sell himself unto thee, thou shalt not make him to serve as a bondservant. 40 As a hired servant, and as a settler, he shall be with thee; he shall serve with thee unto the year of jubilee.
One can hire oneself out in a contract or daily, weekly or monthly.
47 And if a stranger who is a settler with thee be waxen rich, and thy brother be waxen poor beside him, and sell himself unto the stranger who is a settler with thee, or to the offshoot of a stranger's family, 48 after that he is sold he may be redeemed; one of his brethren may redeem him; 49 or his uncle, or his uncle's son, may redeem him, or any that is nigh of kin unto him of his family may redeem him; or if he be waxen rich, he may redeem himself.
The case is with a rich Noachide in Israel and a dirt poor Jew (Israeli).
… 26:1 Ye shall make you no idols, neither shall ye rear you up a graven image, or a pillar, neither shall ye place any figured stone in your land, to bow down unto it; for I am the LORD your God. 2 Ye shall keep My Sabbaths, and reverence My sanctuary: I am the LORD.
This is the first time since the Decalogue that idolatry is mentioned and guarding the Shabbos. The Torah emphasizes time after time and then still time again about Shabbos. Yet other Yetzer are less emphasized like idolatry and adultery. Why is this so important for it is perhaps the end result of all creation.
3 If ye walk in My statutes, and keep My commandments, and do them;
This is a condition that one observes what G-D says then he is rewarded but if not and the opposite we shall see later.
4 then I will give your rains in their season, and the land shall yield her produce, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit. … 6 And I will give peace in the land, and ye shall lie down, and none shall make you afraid; and I will cause evil beasts to cease out of the land, neither shall the sword go through your land. 7 And ye shall chase your enemies, and they shall fall before you by the sword. 8 And five of you shall chase a hundred, and a hundred of you shall chase ten thousand; and your enemies shall fall before you by the sword. 9 And I will have respect unto you, and make you fruitful, and multiply you; and will establish My covenant with you.
I, HASHEM, will have respect for you. You respect ME and honor ME, I will give you back measure for measure. Great honor will be due you both here and in the next world.
… 14 But if ye will not hearken unto Me, and will not do all these commandments; 15 and if ye shall reject My statutes, and if your soul abhor Mine ordinances, so that ye will not do all My commandments, but break My covenant; 16 I also will do this unto you: I will appoint terror over you, even consumption and fever, that shall make the eyes to fail, and the soul to languish; and ye shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it.
Unfortunately, due to improper education and just a sense of rebellion some people who should know better rebel against religion. These Jews in the times of Rome were Epicureans hence the word Apicorsous in Hebrew. They were more learned and broke away today they are boors who just want to live free of Torah and Mitzvos. There are those who are ignoramuses and they are considered children that were raised by non-Jews as they were born that way.
17 And I will set My face against you, and ye shall be smitten before your enemies; they that hate you shall rule over you; and ye shall flee when none pursues you. 18 And if ye will not yet for these things hearken unto Me, then I will chastise you seven times more for your sins.
Although I am not doing Perkei Avos this year it is written measure the reward and cost of the Mitzvah vs. the reward-gratification for a sin and it’s cost. English Royalty cheats right and left and has never visited Israel in 69 years. Along there does not seem to be a penalty to pay. Ha-ha in the next world we shall see who is in an everlasting reward and who is doing time in the spiritual re-education which is not pleasant and the only rest is on Shabbos.
… 45 But I will for their sakes remember the covenant of their ancestors, whom I brought forth out of the land of Egypt in the sight of the nations, that I might be their God: I am the LORD. 46 These are the statutes and ordinances and laws, which the LORD made between Him and the children of Israel in mount Sinai by the hand of Moses.
Despite all of the curses listed which I skipped, HASHEM will remember his people.
27:1 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them: When a man shall clearly utter a vow of persons unto the LORD, according to thy valuation, 3 then thy valuation shall be for the male from twenty years old even unto sixty years old, even thy valuation shall be fifty shekels of silver, after the shekel of the sanctuary. 4 And if it be a female, then thy valuation shall be thirty shekels. 5 And if it be from five years old even unto twenty years old, then thy valuation shall be for the male twenty shekels, and for the female ten shekels. 6 And if it be from a month old even unto five years old, then thy valuation shall be for the male five shekels of silver, and for the female thy valuation shall be three shekels of silver. 7 And if it be from sixty years old and upward: if it be a male, then thy valuation shall be fifteen shekels, and for the female ten shekels.
The valuation is for a slave or somebody who sells himself for hiring out. Or for damages. The courts do the same. If a 20 to 60-year-old sues for loss of Avoda he is given compensation. However, as my wife and I approach 70, we have less energy to work as hard as before. So for a manufacturing standpoint we are of less value. I cannot lay cinder blocks as I did at 40 when I built the wall on the side of my property.
8 But if he be too poor for thy valuation, then he shall be set before the priest, and the priest shall value him; according to the means of him that vowed shall the priest value him. … 34 These are the commandments, which the LORD commanded Moses for the children of Israel in mount Sinai.
Not only Shmita was given at Har Sinai but all the commandments perhaps the ones given on the other side of the Yarden were also given orally on Sinai.
Chazak – Chazak v’ nit Chazak
Innocent Ari at “Cables and Chips” by Rabbi Yerachmiel Tilles
"Excuse me, Sir," the boy asked, "are you Jewish?" "Of course, I'm Jewish," Howard replied." I even had a Bar Mitzvah!" "Well, would you like to put on tefillin?" the yeshiva boy shot back with a grin. "I'm sorry, but I'm quite busy today," said Howard. "Here's 20 bucks for charity. Have a nice day."
Howard closed the door behind him and thought nothing more of the encounter. Yet, it wasn't the last he saw of this 14-year-old teenage yeshiva boy, named Ari Halberstam. Every Friday like clockwork, Ari returned to Cables & Chips -- Howard's family-owned business -- to offer Howard the opportunity to put on tefillin.
After a few weeks, Howard could no longer resist Ari's charm and he relented. As Ari wrapped the tefillin around Howard's arm for the first time since his Bar Mitzvah, a spark was ignited, and a friendship was born.
As time passed, Ari became a fixture in the Cables & Chips office. Howard would look forward to his weekly visits, when they would chat about politics, religion, and most importantly - sports. Howard and Ari shared a love of The Game - any game. They'd commiserate over teams' losses and get into heated debates over games of baseball, hockey, football and basketball. Howard would treat Ari with tickets to games, and their bond continued to grow.
Until one Friday, Ari stopped coming.
It was March 1st, 1994 when Ari awoke extra early to travel to the Manhattan hospital where the Lubavitcher Rebbe was undergoing cataract surgery. At the hospital, Ari donned his tefillin and prayed the morning service, but did not have time to wrap them before catching a ride back to Brooklyn. As the van, filled with black-hatted teenagers, drove up the ramp to the Brooklyn Bridge, a Lebanese-born terrorist, armed with an arsenal of weapons, opened fire on the van.* Ari was shot in the head while clutching his unraveled tefillin - the very ones which Howard had worn the previous Friday. He was all of sixteen years old.
Howard was heartbroken to learn that the young Ari Halberstam, whose name was plastered all over the news stations, was the same Ari who had been coming to put him on tefillin for the past two years.
Ari's friend, Zalmy, continued to come, but Howard Feinstein's Fridays were never the same again.
A few months after Ari's passing, the Halberstam family reached out to Howard. They invited him to the Torah dedication which was written in Ari's memory and Howard proudly inscribed his own letter in the Torah. Later, Howard and his wife, Susan, joined the Board of Directors for the Jewish Children's Museum in Brooklyn, NY, which was built in Ari's memory. When Ari's tefillin buddy, Zalmy, dedicated the synagogue of his Chabad House to Ari's memory, Howard proudly stood by.
Over the ensuing years Howard and Susan became extended family to the Halberstam's. They shared in their joys -- celebrating weddings, births, and happy occasions. The Feinstein's friendship was always a source of comfort to the family.
Ari's brothers continued to visit Cables & Chips on Fridays, with Ari's tefillin in hand. Howard welcomed them in like family, embracing them with his usual friendliness and warmth. When Ari's brothers went out of town, other yeshiva boys continued the Friday route, visiting Howard to don tefillin.
In a collection of memories that was collaborated for Ari's 10th yahrzeit, Howard wrote, "I remember the first time putting tefillin on. The boys wished me a Gut Shabbos. As they left my business, I saw Zalman put his arm around Ari's shoulder and say, "Nice job, you did it, good deed convincing and showing Howard how to put tefillin on."
He continued to highlight some of his memories of Ari. "Our competitive and heated discussions were always about the Mets vs. Yankees, Knicks vs. Nets, Rangers vs Devils and Giants vs. Jets." He continued, "I will always have fond memories of Ari Halberstam."
Howard also spoke at a yartzheit gathering for Ari's family several years later. He reminisced about his time with Ari, and shared his feelings about the boy who put tefillin on him for the first time since his Bar Mitzvah, igniting his love for the mitzvah.
This past Friday, May 16, 2014, Howard's soul returned to its heavenly place. The last mitzvah he did on Earth, was to put on tefillin from his hospital bed.
At Howard's funeral, his son, Geoff, grew emotional as he reminisced about Howard's special relationship with a yeshiva boy named Ari Halberstam. As Ari's family members sat amongst the mourners, he expressed the Feinstein family's belief that Ari would surely be there to greet Howard at the heavenly gates, two souls united through the mitzvah of tefillin.
Chaim ben Leizer Halevi Feinstein was buried in Staten Island on Monday the 19th day of the Jewish month of Iyar, the date of Ari's birth, 36 years before….
Source: Adapted by Yerachmiel Tilles mainly from an article by Chana Apfelbaum for //colLive.com on May 22, 2014.
* For complete details, go to the
Ari Halberstam memorial website: http://www.arihalberstam.com/sequence-of-events/. The Hebrew date was 23 Adar (5754), Ari's yahrzeit.
1) From http://www.arihalberstam.com/about-ari/
Ari shared a special bond with the Lubavitcher Rebbe and his wife. At three years old, he sat on the Rebbe's lap as the Rebbe taught him the first letters of the aleph-bet. As a child, the Rebbe kissed his forehead in the exact spot that the bullet entered so many years later.
Ari's father worked as a butler and personal manager in the grand Rabbi's household for many years until Rabbi Schneerson's wife, Chaya, died in 1988. Mrs. Schneerson was particularly close to Ari, and was known to treat him as the grandson she never had.
2) (From the NY Times, Dec. 27, 2009):
The metal signs are impossible to miss. They are oversize, in a bold blue usually found on signs directing drivers to the nearest hospital. And there are lots of them - 13 in all, according to the city's count - along a quarter-mile stretch of roadway and its approaches.
In fact, probably no thoroughfare in New York City is better identified than the ramp connecting the southbound Franklin D. Roosevelt Drive to the Brooklyn Bridge. The signs all say the same thing: "Ari Halberstam Memorial Ramp."
Many drivers no doubt have no idea who that is. And that's precisely why the signs are there.
From Nofyah: When I don’t like the service I give 10% sometimes 20% but never zero: https://www.good.is/articles/server-gets-stiffed-and-tells-the-scary-truth
Pope dances with Chassidic Band: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4959705,00.html
Signs of a heart attack that are often ignored: http://www.livestrong.com/article/557772-9-health-warning-signs-you-should-never-ignore/?utm_source=aol.com&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=9-health-warning-signs-you-should-never-ignore&utm_campaign=AOL-Wellness
From Barry Shaw there might be fake news but there certainly is a number of fake “Rabbis” from the mixed multitude that crept into our people over the centuries. BDS “Rabbi” protests Israel. https://mikereport.wordpress.com/2017/02/12/seattle-rabbi-leads-delegation-against-jewish-state/
Security Corruption: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4962664,00.html
Comptroller’s report: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4963190,00.html
Milestone Roger Ailes passes away at the age of 77. http://video.foxnews.com/v/5440530018001/?#sp=show-clips
This is not my normal topic but there is a major fight for freedom in Venezuela.
Jordan blames Israel for killing their citizen who was in the act of stabbing a policeman. http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4961514,00.html
On Friday, I started getting notices from the bank of France. Since of course I have my billions stored there I did not open it. This is how the hacking works. The number of countries hit now at 150 and may still be growing. Always download Microsoft Security Patch Updates! The patch was there in the system and I use Windows Defender to keep my Computer Secure. http://debka.com/article/26053/Global-hacking-for-ransom-hits-99-countries
Did this fellow have gun smuggling, terror or just plain stupid in mind but it is criminal. http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4961157,00.html
North Korea in conjunction with Iran fires a missile: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/229585
Moving the Embassy will put an end to a fantasy. http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/229630
Israel prepares for a major cyber-attack: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4962022,00.html
Ed-Op Congressional Victory Caucus – Dr. Martin Sherman. https://www.algemeiner.com/2017/05/12/the-congressional-israel-victory-caucus-a-diplomatic-iron-dome/
N. Korea – Iran has ICBM capable of carrying nukes not yet to Continental US. http://debka.com/article/26054/North-Korea-uses-Trump’s-troubles-to-fire-missile
Having Abbas as a moderate has plenty of dangers: https://www.algemeiner.com/2017/05/14/ronald-lauder-promoting-abbas-as-respectable-moderate-is-fraught-with-danger/
Jordan claims anti-terrorist stance. http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4962025,00.html
Arab imprisons brother to prevent him from conversion and joining the IDF: https://www.algemeiner.com/2017/05/14/police-suspect-israeli-arab-man-of-imprisoning-brother-who-wanted-to-convert-to-judaism-join-idf/
Fake story has Trump leaking classified info: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/229694
From David anti-BDS in Hollywood: https://www.facebook.com/THEPALESTINIANLIECC/photos/a.380744441967825.81658.379392212103048/1528723707169887/?type=3&theater
US Consulate Officials do not reflect the views of the Ambassador or President as they clash with Israelis: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4962667,00.html
N. Korea behind cyber-attack? http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/229697
This has been rumored for a few days already: http://debka.com/article/26055/US-UK-Jordanian-forces-enter-S-Syria
Spying again and again for Syria: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/229721
Syria covering up murders: http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_article.php?id=42443
Jew attacked with hatchet. http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/229612
40 years of the Likud Ed-Op how all the Prime Ministers put the nation above personal interest until Netanyahu: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4962260,00.html
On Sunday Tombstones in old Roman Graveyard toppled Tues. in Phila. http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/229747
Shin Bet foils plot on IDF Soldiers: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4962997,00.html
Arson suspected in Synagogue Fire: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4962393,00.html
NY Times says Israel supplied Trump the info. Israel TV claims another country mentioned by name and that Trump called their leader today. http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4963208,00.html
Effects of building freeze almost gave Yerushalayim an Arab Majority thank you Obama and friends. http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_article.php?id=42451
The Clintons have connections who take care of these people and 95 – 96 others. http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/229763
Defense Min. praises intelligence cooperation: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4963485,00.html
Stabbing attack might be terror: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/229772
Yarmulke wearer threatened in France: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/229768
Big sandstorm hits Eilat: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4964141,00.html
Trump Russian Probe I hope they probe unmasking. http://debka.com/article/26059/Trump-reaches-Mid-East-trip-under-a-grim-probe
With the help of a Red Crescent ambulance to cut off their path, Israelis were almost lynched. http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/229842
Remember Mohammed Cartons in Norway one equated circumcision to pedophilia. Denmark’s PM grants money to anti-Semites: http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_article.php?id=42499
Times Square attempted suicide by cop: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2017/05/18/1-times-square-pedestrian-killed-others-hurt-after-car-jumps-curb.html
Israeli aid to Syrian Refugee Children: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4964243,00.html
Good Shabbos all I close with a sad heart today as a man who was my secondary Chavrutha for 28.5 years gave over his soul to his maker today and as I put out this Drasha may it help the soul of Meir Yisrael ben Yacov Wolf,
Be well all,