Shabbat Parashat Shelach 5774
Shelach | 16 Sivan 5774 | 6/14/2014
This coming week will mark the 19th anniversary of the death of our mentor and teacher, Harav Shaul Yisraeli. We will therefore dedicate our thoughts on the parasha to remembering his characteristics and history. Rav Yisraeli made aliya in 5694 (’34). In those days, some liked to quote the Rebbe of Munkatch, who “darshened” a famous pasuk from our parasha in the following way. “… and you shall not stray after your heart (Herzl, based on hertz = heart in Yiddish) and after your eyes (Kook, based on kook = look in Yiddish)” (Bamidbar 15:39). While that Rebbe warned against Zionism and the danger he perceived from our master, Rav Avraham Yitzchak Hakohen Kook, Rav Yisraeli had the z’chut to be a student of Rav Kook. The opponents of Zionism also claimed, in regard to our parasha, that the Zionists were like the ma’apilim, those who tried to go to the Land prematurely, before Hashem agreed to such a step (see ibid. 14:41-42). Rav Yisraeli understood that the greater danger was not the role model of the ma’apilim but that of the meraglim, the spies who incited the people to refuse to go to the Land. We believe the correct approach was that of the Gaon of Vilna, the approach that called for Jews all over to flock to Eretz Yisrael during the Jewish century of the 5600s, which ended in 1939, when indeed the gates to the Land from Europe were almost completely sealed.
I have children of various ages, and it is often difficult to have them wait six hours between meat and milk. Milk is an important part of their diet/lifestyle (including before bed), and eating disorders concern me.
In the beginning, everyone who was capable of reciting [the verses of mikra bikurim] would recite himself, and he who did not know how to do it would be prompted. Some people refrained from bringing [the bikurim]. They instituted that they would prompt those who did not know and those who did know.
The ostensible sources that allow accepting witnesses on behalf of a defendant without the plaintiff all refer to cases that are not equivalent to ours. The Ran (Ketubot 57a of Rif’s pages) refers to a widow who sold property in order to support herself as she deserves, and there is just a question whether she did so in a responsible way. Regarding the Ran’s case, there are special leniencies regarding the payment of a ketuba to a widow.
is endowed by
Les & Ethel Sutker
Louis and Lillian Klein, z”l
to the memory of:
Yechezkel Shraga Brachfeld
Rabbi Yosef Mordechai Simcha
ben Bina Stern o.b.m
who passed away
21 Adar I, 5774
R' Yaakov ben Abraham & Aisha
Chana bat Yaish & Simcha
A weekly divrei Torah leaflet: A Glimpse at the Parasha, Ask the Rabbi, From the writings of Harav Avraham Yitzchak Hakohen Kook, zt”l, Pninat Mishpat (Jewish Monetary Law).