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FRUMToronto Articles Gut Shabbos & Gut Yom Tov

Shabbos and Yom Tov information.

Parshas Vayeishev
Immediately after the Torah relates that Yaakov settled in the land of Canaan, the Parsha commences with the narrative regarding the dreams and subsequent selling of Yosef. Rashi explains that Yaakov yearned to be able to “settle down” and live without any further aggravation, and shortly thereafter he experienced the debacle of Yosef and his brothers. Our Sages tell us that although righteous people wish to live in peace, Hashem counters, “Is it not enough what awaits them in the World-to-Come that they also want to live in the present world without difficulties?” Rav Wolbe asks (Shiurei Chumash Parshas Vayeishev) that when Yaakov requested serenity, his intention was not that he would have the quiet time needed to sit back on a recliner and smoke a cigar. Yaakov Avinu, the very embodiment of perpetual Torah study, felt that a cessation of adversity would give him the clarity one needs for the proper understanding of Torah. This being the case, why was Yaakov not granted his request? Rav Wolbe quotes Rav Yerucham Levovitz zt”l who said, “In a factory you will never find a recliner.” Since everyone is busy working, there is no time to sit back and relax. Likewise, this world was not created with the intention that we mosey on through life in a utopian setting. Such feelings of tranquility are set aside for the Next World. Yaakov Avinu, the “chosen” among our forefathers, had the most difficult life of them all. He was born and grew up with Eisav who was bent on killing him, and consequently he fled to his uncle Lavan, who cheated him day in and day out. On his way back to his parent’s house, he experienced the kidnapping and violation of his daughter Dinah. When he finally arrived home, Yosef is sold by his brothers - eventually leading to Yaakov’s exile to Egypt. All the aggravation that he experienced was meted out to him in order that he realize that in this world he must rise above adversity and perform to the best of his ability. Often one feels that it is difficult to concentrate when he is in certain situations or has other obligations, and therefore he is exempt from performing specific mitzvos. How can he possibly concentrate enough to study Torah or daven when he feels that his life is in such turmoil? However, it is specifically in these situations that we are expected to prove that we can rise above the external factors that were placed as a hindrance, and achieve that which is incumbent upon us. Rav Chaim Soloveitchik once asked his son (later known as the “Brisker Rav”) to bring him a specific sefer. After completing the task, Reb Chaim asked his son what he was thinking about. His son told him that he had a difficulty in the Rambam that he was trying to answer. Reb Chaim stated that he could have gotten the sefer himself, however, he wanted to habituate his son to think in Torah even when he is preoccupied with other matters. Rav Wolbe commented that he sometimes found that when he had quiet time to study he would not arrive at a chiddush. However, when the phone was ringing, students needed attention, things had to be organized, and he had places to go, often new and novel chiddushim would occur to him. It is specifically in busy times that we have to make the effort to perform to the best of our abilities, so that we can reap the boundless rewards. This dvar Torah was compiled by the family of the Mashgiach l’iluy nishmas the Mashgiach Harav Shlomo ben R’ Moshe z”l. L”n Hilda Leah bas Bernard Boruch.

Posted 12/14/2006 12:00 AM | Tell a Friend | Gut Shabbos & Gut Yom Tov

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