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Does Serious Torah Learning Entail Selfishness?
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Life lessons from the ant.  Zerizus without confusion. Importance of learning the horizontal breadth of Torah as preparation for being able to plumb the vertical depths of Torah. Prioritizing learning over caring for one’s family.  Contradictory statements about the propriety of deflecting one’s home-based responsibilities for the sake of learning. Citations: Aside from the commentaries on Mishlei, […]
Can Judges Disregard Testimony?
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 Giving advice and giving psak halachah.  Different understandings of “Ain l’dayan ela ma she–aynav ro’os.” Is the repermission to err when trying hard?  Is there justification to reject afalsified case, even without proof? Importance of dayanim ignoring the baalei dinim’s outside track record of honesty. Citations: Aside from the commentaries on Mishlei, this shiur citesRambam Hilchos Sanhedrin 23:8-10, Teshuvos HaRosh klal 107, 6thsiman, Gemara Baba Basra 8b with […]
Street-Smarts and Torah
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The importance of having street-smarts when deciding halachos that relate to people’s conduct (in contrast to deciding halachos about objects.)  Discussion of the link between Sarah Imeinu and Yehoshua Bin Nun.  Batei din and to’anim today.  Keeping a balanced perspective in life. Citations: Aside from the commentaries related to Mishlei, this shiur references the Biur HaGra on Yesha’ayahu 1:17 and the Rosh to Sanhedrin, Chapter 3, siman […]
Become Klal Yisroel’s Shmatte?
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Responsibility of a Rebbe and of a Dayan. Instructions for aDayan’s improvement after failure; increase responsibility and arvus.The lives of Gedolei Yisroel. Citations: Aside from the commentaries related to Mishlei, this shiuralso cites Gemara Shabbos 10a, and Maseches Semachos 8:8.
How Does Tzedakah Given L’Ilui Nishmas Work?
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Discussion of how a child’s conduct can bring reward to a parent after the parent’s passing.  Chinuch viewed as an investment that gives dividends for years to come.  Discussion of giving tzedakah l’ilui nishmas a person unrelated to the giver, and who didn’t influence the giver. Insights into Yizkor, encompassing tefillah and tzedakah for the […]
Tzedakah’s Power to Save
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Tzedakah’s power is just one of a myriad factors that goes into Hashem’s unknowable calculation of how to run His world with respect to you.   Tzedakah has the power to save, but other forces also affect the outcome. Analysis of mitzvas tzedakah and how ayin hara might take effect. Tzedaka after death. Citations: In […]
Taking Responsibility Locally and Cosmically
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Analysis of the blessing for those were serve the community. Discussion of ruling in halacha when unqualified, and abstaining from it when duly qualified.  Taking responsibility for each other.  Sfas Emes on Yisro’s joining the Jewish people.  The cosmic power of Klal Yisroel.  Closeness to Hashem is due to the responsibility we accepted at Mount Sinai.  Teshuva subsequent to sin has […]
Teshuvah from Causing Hurt Feelings
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Discussion of whether or not repentance from theft of money also requires asking forgiveness for the hurt feelings caused. Responsibility of a leader for his flock.  The problem of, and solution for, a leader being preoccupied with prestige. Citations: Aside from the commentaries on Mishlei, this shiur cites Gemara Yoma 87a, Rabbeinu Yonah Shaarei Teshuva Shaar daled, #18,19 and Shaar […]
The Mother’s Chinuch Influence
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Analysis of the nature of the educational influences a child experiences from his father and mother.  Acute Torah lessons versus osmosis and experience. Importance of a positive environment in terms of the opportunity to hear guidance and critique.  Rebellion against being told what to do by Hashem reflects the presence of an element of apikorus. […]
Insights into the Structure of Sefer Mishlei
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Structure of the verses in the 2nd section of Mishlei. Chochmah helps us identify the hevel of the world as a foreign value.  But it doesn’t address inertia and the yetzer to do wrong.  Waging war to overcome our lower selves is the realm of mussar. The third section of Mishlei is having the correct […]