A Lesson A Day – Confirming Suspicions

SEFER CHOFETZ CHAIM

Confirming Suspicions

      The Torah does not accept circumstantial evidence as proof of a person’s guilt. Thus, when one suspects an individual of improper behavior, he may not decide that his suspicions are correct based on the person’s reactions to accusations or other strange behavior that strongly points to his guilt.

      Nevertheless if, in addition to the circumstantial evidence, such suspicions are subsequently supported by someone else’s claim to have actually witnessed the person engaging in such behavior, one does have the right to believe that his suspicions are correct.

      However, to whatever degree possible, the listener is still obliged to judge the perpetrator favorably; he must seek to understand his motives and should not be swift to condemn him.

      Moreover, one may not pass on the information without fulfilling the preconditions for relating negative information for a constructive purpose.

SEFER SHMIRAS HALOSHON

Dealing with Humiliation

      The author of Sefer Chareidim writes:

      Whenever someone insults or humiliates me in public, I place a scale before my eyes: On one side are my sins, on the other side are the insults and humiliations which have been directed toward me. I see the side of my sins weighing down lower and lower, and I choose to bear my disgrace in silence and tell myself that I deserve it. I do this whenever faced with any sort of distress, be it through another’s word or deed (Sefer Chareidim 4:5).

      The average person would prefer to suffer humiliation if this will prevent him from suffering monetary loss, as when his property is threatened by fire or other means of devastation. How much more should one be willing to suffer humiliation if this will save his soul from punishment? Certainly, then, one should react to humiliation with silent acceptance.

Taken from my
A Lesson A Day
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Rabbi Chofetz Chaim
Chofetz Chaim
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This entry was posted in Judaism, Laws of Loshon Hora, SEFER CHOFETZ CHAIM, SEFER SHMIRAS HALOSHON and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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