Sunday, August 13, 2017

The Hoooollllyyy Ruuuuuuuv From Tel OOOviv

לזכות ידיד נפשי האהוב רבי אפרים אבא בן מרים שושנה וכל בני ביתו היקרים

Rebbe Aharon Kdosh Hashem of Belz [yahrtzeit today כ"א אב] couldn't take it when people would speak badly of Jews. He would call mechalelei Shabbos "people who confuse Shabbos for Erev Shabbos". He explained the mishna "כלל גדול אמרו בשבת השוכח עיקר שבת" - The fundamental principal of Shabbos is that one should say about wayward Jews that they forgot that it is Shabbos. When he wanted to describe a Jew who didn't even lay tefillin he would call him someone who doesn't wear Rabbeinu Tam tfillin. He called the Kibbutznikim "tzadikim" and explained that they don't wear tfillin because they are concerned that they can't keep a "guf naki" and thus refrain from the prohibition of wearing tfillin with a guf she-aino naki. He would not say that a Jew is a "rasha" or other such terms of "endearment" but that he is "shvach" [weak]. 

When someone would call the irreligious Jews "goyim" he would get very upset and insist that the person say three times "they are yidden" or something to that effect [and tell him to wash netilas yadaim to purify himself]. There was once a period when the Charedi and religious zionist parties formed a united front in the Knesset [חזית מאוחדת]. Someone remarked to the Rebbe "Jews and goyim united". The Rebbe became very upset and made him say "Jews and Jews united" and told him to wash netilas yadayim, say it again - "Jews and Jews united", wash and say it yet again. Finally, the Rebbe warned him never to speak like that again. When the party was being formed, the Rebbe was approached to sign a proclamation in favor. He was told by someone that they are coming together to fight against "Yiddishe goyim". The Rebbe interrupted and told him that one may not speak that way and told him to wash his hands 3 times and to say 10 times "Yidden, Yidden" etc. Then he said "Continue, but don't say that again".

One time his doctor, Dr. Rabinowitz, was examining him and saw that he was in a state of great dveykus. He asked "Voos tracht yetzt der Roov?" [What is the Rov thinking about?] The Rebbe answered "Gits oifen yidden" [Good things about Jews]. 

He said that just like one has to engage in mental gymnastics to explain a difficult Rambam, so too one must do everything in his power to explain a "difficult" Jew. 

When he heard about Jews who danced on Shabbos in discos and the like [he lived in Tel Aviv which he called "Tel Oooveev" with a Chasidic emphasis on the "Ooo"] he exclaimed "Ahhhh, Yidden are enjoying their Shabbos". 

On Sunday of Parshas Re-eh 5617 [1957] the Skverer Rebbe found out that the Belzer Rebbe was niftar. He was extremely distressed and spent hours secluded in his room. He then allowed a few people into his room such as his son [the present Skverer Rebbe Shlita] and his son in law [the present Rachemestrivka Rebbe Shlita] and said the following: The Ohr Hachaim in Parshas Re-eh cites the story in Maseches Chagiga about the Amora, Rava Bar Sheela who met Eliyahu Hanavi and asked him what Hashem is doing at this time. Eliyahu answered that Hashem is sitting now and saying divrei halacha in the name of great Rabbis except for Rebbi Meir who learned from "Acher" [Rebbi Elisha ben Avuya who went off the derech]. 

Rav Bar Sheela was shocked and asked Eliyahu why Hashem wasn't saying divrei Torah in Rebbi Meir's name for he only took the GOOD from Acher but not the bad. תוכו אכל קליפתו זרק - He ate the inside and threw away the peel. 

Eliyahu said "Now Hashem is saying a dvar Torah in the name of Rebbi Meir."

Asked the Ohr Hachaim: Hashem knew the truth that Rebbi Meir was really correct in what he was doing and was not being negatively influenced. Why then did he need the approval of Rava Bar Sheela before he said Torah in the name of Rebbi Meir? 

Explains the Ohr Hachaim: We see from here, that in Shomayim, they first need people on earth to judge others positively and only then do they receive Divine approval. [See the Sfas Emes on the mishna הוי דן את כל האדם לכף זכות]. 

Concluded the Skverer Rebbe: מען דארף האבן אויף די וועלט א יוד וואס זאהל זאגן אז עס איז גוט, און דאס איז געווען דער בעלזער רב זי"ע! We need people in this world to speak good about the deeds of Jews. That person was the Belzer Rov. 

Zchuso yagen aleinu!!:-)