A Lesson A Day – Old Information

SEFER CHOFETZ CHAIM

Old Information

      The prohibition against speaking rechilus may apply even if the listener is already aware of the information being conveyed. Rechilus includes any statement which may foster animosity; repeating how someone maligned or acted against the listener might make the listener better aware of details that would be cause for added hatred. Moreover, if the listener had not yet given much thought to the information, repeating it could be cause for animosity to form.

SEFER SHMIRAS HALOSHON

Recipe for Success

      The infinite benefit of avoiding strife in financial matters through proper bitachon, trust in Hashem, can be understood with the following parable:

      A father distributed portions of food to his sons who were gathered around his table. One son reached over and snatched his brother’s portion. When the victim saw that his portion would not be returned, he went to the head of the table and told his father what had happened. “I am sure, Father,’’ said the son, “that you do not want me to fight with my brother. That is why I am requesting another portion for myself.’’ Upon hearing this, the father kissed his son on the head and handed him a larger portion than before. The father said, “Let your foolish brother keep your original portion. The next time we eat together, you will receive a double portion, while he will get nothing.’’

      Now, what would the father’s reaction have been had the victimized son yelled at his brother and attacked him physically until he succeeded in retrieving his portion? Surely the father would have been very upset. He would have told the victim, “I would have gladly given you another portion rather than have you and your brother come to blows with one another. What utter foolishness you have demonstrated!’’

      When a Jew adversely affects another’s financial affairs and refuses to honor a request that he cease his wrongful practices, and the victim pleads before Hashem that He replenish his losses—surely he will find favor Above for demonstrating his trust in Hashem and pursuing the path of peace. And his trust will be rewarded with yet greater success in his business endeavors.

      However, if one chooses to feud with the person who has done him wrong, he will not find favor before Hashem, like the victimized son in our parable who upset his father by taking matters into his own hands.1

      1. Of course, the victim has every right to seek restitution in a Jewish court of law or pursue other avenues which are sanctioned by halachah.

Taken from my
A Lesson A Day
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Rabbi Chofetz Chaim
Chofetz Chaim
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