Torah Tidbits

23 April 2014 / 23 Nisan 5774

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Issue 1053
Shabbat Parshat Va’etchanan - Nachamu
July 18, 2013
Lead Tidbits
Guest Article

From the pen of Rabbi Berel Wein - Reprinted from Shabbat Shalom #4 with permission

This week’s parsha begins the seven week period of consolation and condolence that bridges the time space between Tish’a b’Av and Rosh HaShana. In order to properly prepare for the oncoming year and its challenges, one must first be comforted by the vision of better times ahead and the belief in one’s ability to somehow overcome those omnipresent challenges. Healing occurs when one believes that there is yet a future ahead.

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Guest Article

Where is the Gratitude?

Rabbenu Bachya and the Sefer HaChinuch both state that expressing gratitude (Hakarat HaTov) is the essence and foundation of Judaism. If so, how do we explain the death threats sent to Charedi soldiers, serving in the IDF, warning them that an all out war will be fought against them, if these Charedi IDF soldiers do not abandon their military bases and discard their “tameh” (ritually defiled) uniforms.

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Guest Article

Tu B’av

...LO HA’YU YAMIM TOVIM L’YISRAEL KA’CHAMISHA ASAR B’AV…
In the last Mishna of Taanit, Rabban Shimon b. Gamliel tells us that there were no more joyous festivals in Israel than TU b’Av and Yom Kippur. In the middle of this “tragic” month, the month whose entrance was accompanied by the diminishing of our joy, we find the most joyous festival. If you will ponder the various reasons for TU b’Av, you can see in each one a message of consolation and promise… and joy.

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Aliya-by-Aliya Sedra Summary

Aliya-by-Aliya Sedra Summary

[P> X:Y (Z)] and [S> X:Y (Z)] indicate start of a parsha p’tucha or s’tuma. X:Y is Perek:Pasuk of the beginning of the parsha; (Z) is the number of p’sukim in the parsha.

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Sedra Stats

Va'etchanan stats

45th of 54 sedras;
2nd of 11 in D’varim

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Lead Tidbit

The Bizarro Pesach Ring

A while back - Lead Tidbit of TT 810 (but maybe more recently, as well), we described the mitzva (make that mitzvot) of remembering Y’TZI’AT MITZRAYIM as a beautiful diamond ring. Leil HaSeder was the diamond itself.

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Other Tidbits
TTriddles "Report"

TTriddles

TTriddles are Torah Tidbits-style riddles on Parshat HaShavua (sometimes on the calendar). They are found in the hard-copy of TT scattered throughout, usually at the bottom of different columns. In the electronic versions of TT, they are found all together at the end of the ParshaPix-TTriddles section. The best solution set submitted each week (there isn’t always a best) wins a double prize a CD from Noam Productions and/or a gift (game, puzzle, book, etc.) from Big Deal

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Divrei Menachem

Divrei Menachem

We are inclined to note that Parshat D’varim occurs each year on the Shabbat preceding Tish’a b’Av. One clue concerning the connection between the parsha and this prominent fast day can be found in Moshe’s address to the people whereby he records some of the people’s more pressing moments - pressing moments that became depressing moments.

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ParshaPix Explanations

Parsha Pix

The plus and minus in a negation circle is for the prohibition of adding to the Torah or detracting from it
Again, the Torah tells us of the mitzva to designate cities of refuge - 3 on the east side of the Jordan (and 3 on the west side)
The LUCHOT in the TORAH on the mountain stands for the repetition of the Aseret HaDibrot (with differences) and reminds us that the whole Torah was given by G-d at Sinai, not just the Big Ten

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"From Machon Puah"

The Best Use of Fertility Treatment

This week we will continue to discuss some of the halachic decisions rendered by the late posek Rabbi Yehoshua Yeshaya Neuwirth zt"l, who is best known as the author of the seminal work “Sh’mirat Shabbat K’hilchatah” but who also gave important halachic decisions in many other areas as well.

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Portion of the Portion

SH'MA YISRAEL... will All Your Soul

Those who are learning Daf Yomi had a reference to our verses from Sh’ma last week (Psachim 25a). The Gemara is discussing having benefit (issur hanaya) from things that are prohibited to us in some way (i.e chametz, meat-in-milk). In our case it is talking about what types of produce are permissible to be used as medicines. The Gemara states that a person may be healed with any substance, even one whose benefit is prohibited, except for the wood of an ASHEIRA. An ASHEIRA is a type of tree that is worshiped for AVODA ZARA or under which an idol is placed.

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Parsha Points to Ponder

Parsha Points to Ponder by Rabbi Dov Lipman - Va’etchanan

1) Why does Moshe say that he wants to pass into Israel AND I WILL SEE THE LAND (3:25). Isn’t it obvious that if he went into the land that he will see it?
2) Why does the Torah command not to take away from the mitzvot of the Torah - LO TIGRIU MIMENU (4:2)? Isn’t it obvious that it would be a sin to not fulfill commandments in the Torah?
3) The Hagada describes the four sons and is critical of the wicked sons who asks WHAT IS THIS SERVICE TO YOU? This week’s parsha includes the question of the wise son and he also says WHAT ARE THESE LAWS WHICH G-D HAS COMMANDED YOU (6:20)? He also says YOU and is not inclusive of himself so how is this different from the wicked son’s question?

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Chizuk and Idud

CHIZUK and IDUD for Olim not yet Olim respectively

Near the beginning of this week’s parasha we read (D’varim 4:1) - “And now, O Israel, hearken unto the statutes and ordinances which I teach you, to do them, that you may live and go in to possess the Land which HaShem, the G-d of your fathers, gives you.” Verses 4:5 and 4:14 convey a similar message: Moshe teaches us the ordinances and statutes so that we can perform them in the Land of Israel.

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Vebbe Rebbe

Standing for Chatan & Kalla

Question: Is there a reason to stand for a chatan (groom) and a kalla (bride) as they enter the chupa (wedding canopy)?

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Word of the Month

Word of the Month

A weekly feature of Torah Tidbits to help clarify practical and conceptual aspects of the Jewish Calendar, thereby better fulfilling the mitzva of HaChodesh HaZeh Lachem…

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In This Issue of Torah Tidbits

Candle Lighting and Havdala

Candle Lighting Sponsored By:

Sedra Stats

45th of 54 sedras;
2nd of 11 in D’varim

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Word of the Month

Some will have said Kiddush L’vana at the first opportunity. Others will have waited until Motza’ei Tish’a b’Av. Some might be waiting for Motza’ei Shabbat Nachamu (before Howie Kahn’s Concert). The last op is early Tuesday morning (July 23rd) at 4:19am. That’s just about all night, since first light isn’t too much later. The following does not happen every month, but it isn’t rare either. Actual full moon is 9:15pm IDT on Monday night. KL is okay until full moon (NIGUD) based on average, 7 hrs. later.
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According to our Tradition, on TU b’Av, the decree of 9Av against the adult male population - to die out during the 40 years of wandering - was rescinded for the remaining 15,000 men. This is part of the joy that is TU b’Av.