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34. The Three Kinds of Evil
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The Rambam says that there are three kinds of evil in the world. [III, 12] The first is based on the fact that man is a physical and temporal being. Because of this, we are subject to physical ailments, whether based on weaknesses in our own constitutions or exposure to harmful agents in our environments. […]
Tzarich Iyun: Errors in Laining
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Misconception: If a baal korei (person publicly reading the Torah) makes an error that alters the meaning of the text and he has already read God’s name in that verse, he must first finish the verse and then reread the entire verse. Fact: There is no need to first complete the verse, nor to restart […]
Torah and Derech Eretz
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Rabbi Elazar the son of Azaria would say: If there is no Torah, there is no social decorum; if there is no social decorum there is no Torah. If there is no wisdom, there is no fear of Hashem; if there is no fear of Hashem, there is no wisdom. If there is no applied knowledge, there is […]
33. Is There More Good or Evil in the World?
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Many people mistakenly believe that there is more evil in the world than there is good. They come to this erroneous conclusion because they narrowly focus on details of their own individual circumstances rather than looking at the big picture. [III, 12] An ignorant person considers the world as existing to fulfill his own whims, […]
Tzarich Iyun: Bobe-Mayses
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Misconception: The term bobemayse refers to bobes, Jewish grandmothers. Fact: A bobe-mayse is an old wives’ tale or incredible story. While in Yiddish, bobe is an affectionate name for grandmother, and mayse means tale or story; the term bobe-mayse probably derives from a sixteenth-century Yiddish classic Bove-Bukh.[1] Background:One of the first (chronologically and in pride […]
The Chain of Transmission
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Avos: 1, 1 The first mishna in Pirkei Avos starts with an introduction that outlines the Torah’s transmission chain from generation to generation until the Anshei Kennesses Hagedola. Since the mishna’s main purpose is to relay ideas that the Anshei Kennesses Hagedola implemented and preached, this chronological listing seems somewhat extraneous. The question is: why […]