Condolences to Martin Jankelowitz on the passing of his father, Harold Jankelowitz.    Mazeltov to Louis Defries on the birth of twin grandchildren and mazeltov to parents Mark and Pam Defries.    Mazeltov to Aimee daughter of Janice Milner and granddaughter of Dorothy Milner on the occasion of her engagement to Daniel Verblum from Australia    Mazeltov to Saul Symanowitz, on the occasion of his engagement to Nikki Etkind    Condolences to Douglas Ndlovo on the passing of his nephew, George Sibanda     Mazeltov to Jack and June Edery and Hyman and Helen Burnstein on the birth of a grandaughter and to parents Lance and Tali Burnstein on the birth of a daughter    Mazeltov to Rabbi and Rebbetzin Suchard on the birth of a great grandchild    Mazeltov to Jeffrey and Avril Forman on the birth of a grandson and mazeltov to parents Daniel and Eliesheva on the birth of a son

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Dvar Torah


by Rabbi Zelig Pliskin


The Torah states: “And the priest shall command to take for him who is to be purified two birds alive and pure, and cedar wood, and scarlet, and hyssop.” (Leviticus 14:4)

What lessons about life do we learn from these?

Rashi, the great commentator, cites the Sages that the cedar symbolizes arrogance (a cedar tree is tall and “haughty”). Tzora’at comes from arrogance and the contempt for others which allows him to talk negatively about others.

The Chofetz Chaim commented that someone who speaks against others views himself as above other people and therefore feels that he has a right to say negative things about them. If he were aware of his own faults and limitations, he would not seek out the faults of others.

What is the cure? He should work on humility, which is symbolized by the scarlet that is made from a lowly worm and the use of hyssop which is a small, low bush. (The two live chirping birds are symbolic of the chatter of idle gossip.)

Our lesson: Be aware of one’s own faults and limitations rather than focusing on the faults of others.

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