No announcement available or all announcement expired.
Dvar Torah by Rabbi Zelig Pliskin

Dvar Torah by Rabbi Zelig Pliskin

Miriam, Moshe’s sister, heard from Moshe’s wife, Tzipora, that Moshe had separated himself from her (so that he, Moshe, could receive a prophecy from the Almighty at any time). Miriam felt that Moshe’s behavior was improper, since both she and her brother, Aharon, both carried on their respective married lives, yet received prophecy. Miriam related her feelings to her brother, Aharon.

The Torah states: “And Miriam and Aharon spoke against Moshe because of the Cushite woman whom he had married; for he had married a Cushite woman. And they said, ‘Has G-d spoken only with Moshe? Has he not spoken also with us?’ And the Lord heard. But the man Moshe was very humble, more than all the men that were upon the face of the earth” (Numbers 12:1-3).

The Chofetz Chaim, Rabbi Yisroel Meir Kagan, writes (Shmiras Haloshon 2:18) that from these verses we learn a number of principles concerning loshon hora, the laws regarding defamatory speech:

  • The prohibition against speaking loshon hora applies even when the person spoken against is very humble and does not mind if others speak against him. For this reason, immediately after Moshe was spoken against, the Torah states that he was humble.
  • Even if you have done many favours for another person, it does not give you the right to speak against him. Miriam helped save Moshe’s life when he was an infant but was still punished for her loshon hora.
  • The prohibition against loshon hora applies even if you do not publicize the loshon hora, but only relate it to one person, and that person is a relative who will not repeat it to anyone else. Miriam told the loshon hora only to her brother Aharon who would not publicize it.
  • If you say about a truly great man that his behaviour would only be proper if he were on a higher level, but on his present level his behaviour is improper, it is considered loshon hora. Miriam felt that Moshe was wrong for separating himself from his wife. She erred, however, since Moshe’s level of prophecy was such that at any moment G-d could communicate with him and his abstention was proper.

2020 Sandton Shul Batmitzvah Ceremony