Shabbat Parashat Achare Mot- Kedoshim| 5767
Acharei Mot | | 01/01/2006
We can be proud that one of our era’s “more popular” mitzvot is the matter of lashon hara, not speaking negatively about one’s friend. Of the many references to this mitzva, which the Chafetz Chayim compiled in his seforim, the most direct is in Parashat Kedoshim: “Lo telech rachil b’amecha” (Vayikra 19:16). The commentaries hammer out exactly what telech rachil means. Rashi connects rachil to the similar root for spying. Indeed, one who tells lashon hara first goes around accumulating information to spread.
Case: A va’ad bayit (an apartment building’s residents’ council) demanded of residents to remove property from joint areas and warned that items that were not removed would be discarded. After due notice, removal began. Some residents asked for a delay in discarding their property, which was granted. However, the property of those who did not make a request was thrown into the garbage, prompting one resident to sue for damages.
A state’s function is to serve as a tool for the fulfillment of ideals that are at its foundation. However, there are different approaches in the past and present regarding a state’s nature. One approach is that the state should ensure each individual the freedom of conscience. This freedom finds expression in three basic areas: religion, speech, and the press. Another approach stresses the rights of a segment of the social structure. Nowadays, the most common example is the status of workers. Another approach is to safeguard the nation’s security and prosperity.
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).