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Shabbat Morning Class - Parasha Emor

Rabbi Mansour
Shabbat Morning Class
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??? ????? ?? ?? ???? ??????? ???? ??? ????? ??? ?' ??????" "-"you shall not
defile my holy name and I shall be sanctified among the children of Israel. I
am Hashem who sanctifies you".
From this Pasuk we learn the obligation to sacrifice one’s life to
sanctify the name of Hashem. Our Rabbis teach us that whoever is killed
because he is Jewish goes straight to Gan Eden.
We also learn from this Pasuk the obligation for one to pray with a
Minyan of ten people (how this is learnt from this Pasuk will be explained
What is the connection between dying ' ?? ????? ? -to sanctify
Hashem’s name, and praying with a Minyan that they are derived from the
same Pasuk?? The Shulhan Aruch says that a person is supposed to pray
with such intense devotion that his physical body practically leaves him!
Praying must be an "out of body" experience, where a person connects
himself with his creator to the point where he does not even feel his
physical being! The Baal Shem Tov explains this from the Pasuk that says
???? ??-? ???" "-"Tefilah to Hashem is my life". The prayer to Hashem
should be so strong that it literally takes your life! " !"????? ??-?- ???
This is called ??????? ??????? -"stripping oneself of his physicality".
Through our prayer we become like a Korban-sacrifice, which is totally
sanctified to Hashem and is sacrificed on the altar. A Korban is first
stripped of its hide in a process called ????? . This is comparable to the
??????? -stripping of our physicality that we are supposed to strive for as
we pray. This is another meaning of the statement in the Gemarah that
says: " ????? ???? ?????? ????? "-"the prayers were established to reflect the
sacrifices". The intent is that just like a sacrifice, we are to sanctify
ourselves and remove our physicality at the time of prayer.
This was personified by Yishak Avinu. He was a human sacrifice to
sanctify Hashem, and embodied all the holy intentions that come with it.
This explains why we recited the ?????? in the middle of the Berachah of
???? ????? . Why was this Berachah specifically chosen to insert the
Kedusha?? We now understand that, Kiddush Hashem and sanctifying
Hashem’s name through giving one’s life, is personified by Yishak Avinu. At
the time that he was bound on the alter he was so connected to Hashem
that he literally lost connection with his body, and was in the Shamayim!
When Hashem told Avraham not to sacrifice his son, Yishak had to come
back down to his body and this was a case of ???? ????? . Yishak was
brought back from the dead! For this reason, we recite ?????? which stands
for sanctifying Hashem’s name during the Berachah of ???? ????? , to
commemorate Yishak’s sanctifying Hashem’s name by leaving this world
then coming back to life!
One of the Kavanot we should have in mind during the ?????? is that
we are fulfilling the positive commandment to sanctify Hashem’s name
."??????? ???? ??? ?????"
The Importance of Praying With a Minyan
"??? ?' ????? ???? ???''?? ?? ???? ????? ??? ??? ???? ??? ??? ????,
????? ???? ???? ???? ???, ????? ???? ????" - "R’ Yochanan says: at the time
when Hashem enters a synagogue and does not find ten men he
immediately becomes angry. As it says; why I have come and there is not a
man?! I have called but no one answered!"
We see from this statement the severity of praying with a Minyan.
Hashem immediately gets angry with us if there is no Minyan!
What is it about a Minyan that causes Hashem to get so angry when
there isn’t one?!
One explanation is based upon the connection between the 13
attributes of mercy of Hashem, and the 13 principles of Rabbi Yishmael
through which the Torah is expounded. We have learnt that each one of the
13 Midot corresponds with each one of the 13 principles of Rabbi Yishmael.
For example, the first attribute of mercy is ?-? . The first principle is ??
????? . This means that whenever we come across a ?? ????? (a fortiori
logical argument) in the Gemarah we are accessing the attribute of ,?-?
which stands for ??? of Hashem, as it says; " ."??? ?-? ?? ?? ??
This is illustrated in the story of Miriam when she spoke about Moshe
Rabeinu. Hashem told Moshe: "had she been scolded by her father,
wouldn’t she have been banned to appear for seven days?! All the more so
she should be banned for seven days since she is being scolded by me!"
This constituted a ?? ????? . When Moshe heard this, he prayed "?-? ?? ???
?? ??" . He asked that Hashem, in the name of ? -? should heal her. Once
Hashem "tipped him off" through the ?? ????? , he knew which name of
Hashem to address in his prayer.
Another example of this connection is through the 13th principle and
attribute. The 13th attribute is ???? (and will be absolved). This is connected
with the 13th principle "??? ?????? ??????? ?? ?? ?? ?? ???? ????? ??????
????? ??????" -"two contradictory Pesukim that a third Pasuk comes and
clarifies between them".
What is the connection between ???? and the 13th principle of Rabbi
The Pasuk says " ???? ?? ???? "(literally; he will be absolved he will not
be absolved). The question is, which one is it?! Will he be absolved or not
be absolved?! The Gemarah explains that for one who does Teshuvah he
will be absolved, for one who does not do Teshuvah he will not be
absolved. This Pasuk of ???? ?? ???? is an example of "2 conflicting
Pesukim" and is the 13th principle of Rabbi Yishmael. This is the connection
between ???? and the 13th principle of Rabbi Yishmael of "2 conflicting
In this case, the obligation to pray with a Minyan is learnt from this
Pasuk through a ???? ??? , a common word found in several Pesukim. The
word ??? in " ??????? ???? ??? ????? " and the word " ????? ???? ???? " written
by Korah connects our Pasuk to that one. The word ??? from the Pasuk of
Korah and the word ??? in a Pasuk by the spies connect those two
Pesukim, and through this "double connection" we learn that just like the
evil spies consisted of ten men, so too the obligation of a Minyan to sanctify
Hashem’s name consists of ten men. This is a ????? ??? , and is the second
principle of Rabbi Yishmael. What is the second attribute of mercy of
Hashem? ???? (merciful). We say "???? ???? ???? ??? ??? ????? ????? ?????
???" - "the merciful one will forgive iniquity and not destroy, he will frequently
turn away his anger" we see from here that the aspect of ???? -mercy is
what "turns away" the anger of Hashem.
We now understand that when we do not form a Minyan- and thereby
utilize the ???? ??? that is the source of praying with a Minyan- we thereby
forfeit the corresponding Middah of ???? -mercy. Once we do not have the
mercy of Hashem ?''? , this causes the anger of Hashem to be unleashed
?''? , and this is why when Hashem comes to shul and does not find a
Minyan " ??? ??? ???? "-he immediately becomes angry!
We also see in another respect, " ???? " representing the mercy of
Hashem overtaking the judgment of Hashem, from a line in the song "????
??????" sung at the end of the Hagadah Shel Pesah. It says " "???? ?????
Hashem is merciful "like the Halacha". What is the meaning of being
merciful "like the Halacha"?? The explanation is that the "right" of Hashem
represents Kindness ( ??? ), the "left" of Hashem represents judgment ( ,(???
and the "middle" represents a combination of the two ( ????? ). The mixing
of kindness and judgment creates an even greater level of kindness. When
it comes time for a decision, it comes out that there are two factors in favor
of the kindness of Hashem ( ??? and ????? ), and only one in favor of strict
judgment ( ??? ). The Halacha states ???? ????? ???? ????? (majority wins) so
Hashem judges us favorably in accordance with the Halacha. This is the
meaning of he is " ???? (merciful) like the Halacha". This is another example
of the word ???? being used to represent avoiding Hashem’s anger and
enjoying Hashem’s kindness, and when the ???? ??? is not utilized by not
having a Minyan, we lose this protection of ???? that a ???? ??? represents.
The Benefit of Praying With a Minyan and the Power of Kaddish
The Gemarah (Berachot 3a) brings a story of R’ Yossi once entered a
ruin. Eliyahu Hanavi waited for him at the entrance of the ruin. When R’
Yossi emerged, Eliyahu asked him; "what did you hear"? I heard a
heavenly voice saying "woe to the sons because of whose sins I destroyed
my house, burned my temple and exiled them to the nations" answered R’
Yossi. Eliyahu responded "by your life, and the life of your head! It is not
only at this moment that Hashem says this, but on each and every day he
says this three times! Not only this, but when the Jewish people are in
synagogue and answer "Amen Yehe Sheme Raba" in Kaddish, Hashem
shakes his head and says; " ??? ???? ??????? ???? ????? ?? ":–"fortunate is
the king who is praised this way in his house. What is there for the father
who has exiled his sons?! Woe to the sons who have been exiled from their
fathers table".
Let us analyze this incident of the Gemarah. Three times daily
Hashem bemoans the fact that his children forced him to exile them, but
when the Jews answer Amen Yehe Sheme Raba, Hashem rejoices in his
children’s praise, and feels anguish over the fact that he had to exile us.
What is it about Amen Yehe Sheme Raba that makes Hashem say this??
Why is precisely when the Jews answer "Amen Yehe Sheme Raba" the
time when Hashem feels anguish over our exile?!
Tosafot quotes a commentary of Machzor Vitri which explains that the
Amen Yehe Sheme Raba is a prayer that Hashem’s name should be
lengthened to its full form. In exile Hashem’s name is "shortened" and it is
only ?-? (as the Pasuk says regarding Amalek [which represents the exile]
?? ?? ?? ??-?? ). We pray that his name ? -? should be lengthened
??-?? ???) , the name ?-? should be; ??? - lengthened) and increased to be
in its full form of ? -?-?-? . This entails the addition of ? -? to the current name
in the Galut of ?-? . We also see this hinted in the first few words of Kaddish.
????? ?????? ???? ???" " the words ????? ?????? contain 11 letters alluding
to the ?-? (which equals 11) that we pray should be added to the ? -? , the
current name of Hashem. The word ???? comprises the words ?? -?-? . We
pray that the name ?-? should be ????? -"be increased" to incorporated the
? -? , and complete the name of Hashem.
It is now clear why Hashem says ???? ???? "-"praised is the king who
is praised like this" when the Jews answer Amen Yehe Sheme Raba. The
word ???? comprises the first letters of ??? ??? ???? ??? . It is at that
moment when Hashem feels sorrow over the fact that his name is
incomplete due to the exile. When we answer Amen Yehe Sheme Raba,
and pray that Hashem’s name becomes increased to its full form, it triggers
this reaction of Hashem, and Hashem then desires to fulfill the wishes of
his children and increase his name by ending the exile!
With this we have another understanding of why we need ten men to
form a Minyan. In reality a Minyan consists of eleven, not ten. Who is the
eleventh?? It is Hashem himself! As mentioned, Hashem himself comes
down and joins the Minyan, and if there is no Minyan Hashem asks "????
???? ???? ???" -"why have I come and there is no man?!" The ten men plus
Hashem total eleven, and eleven is the numerical value of ?-? . The Ramban
in Bereshit explains; that sometimes an action is required in this world in
order to trigger a miracle that will happen in Shamayim, and will manifest
itself on earth at a later time (this is why Avraham stopped in the city of
Shechem, he knew that Shechem would be the first city the Jews would
encounter when they were going to conquer the land of Israel. He did an
action to cause a miracle for the Jews at a later time). Like this idea of the
Ramban we too do an action on this world- we gather ten men plus
Hashem to form eleven - in order to trigger a miracle from above that the
eleven ( ? -? ) should be brought back down to Hashem’s name!
This answers a question that is asked about the Ketoret (incense
offering). One of the eleven spices used in the Ketoret is the ??????
(galbanum). It is a foul smelling spice but is still an integral ingredient. From
here the Rabbis learn that even a Rasha- a Jew with no good deeds that is
"foul smelling" can still be a part of a Minyan.
The question is, the ?????? is one of eleven! How then do we see that
he is accepted to comprise a Minyan of ten?!
We now understand that the eleven spices correspond to the eleven
that it takes to make a Minyan. It is ten men plus Hashem which totals
eleven. Which spice of the Ketoret corresponds to Hashem?? It is the
?????? ??? -pure frankincense that alludes to Hashem who is pure. The
?????? is indeed eligible to be a part of the ten men that comprise a Minyan
because every Jew, no matter how far he has strayed, can come back.
We now understand a new understanding in the Pasuk we have been
analyzing. " -"??????? ???? ??? ????? ??? ?' ??????
??????? ; if we sanctify Hashem’s name by reciting Kaddish with ten Men
and thereby create eleven to bring down the ? -? of Hashem’s name – then;
??? ?' I will be Hashem, with his name in its complete form!
This explains a Gemarah (Berachot 8a) that analyzes the Pasuk in
Tehilim:" ???? ?????? ?? ?' ?? ???? "-"as for me, let my prayer be to you
Hashem in an acceptable time".
What is this favorable time- ?? ???? that David Hamelech was
referring to?? It is the time when a Minyan of people gathers to pray.
Based on what we’ve said we can understand this Pasuk even more.
???? ?????? -as for me, what is my prayer? ' ?? ? -that your name ?-?-? -?
should be complete. This is through ?? ???? -the gathering of ten men to
form eleven, and bring down the ? -? to complete .?-? -? -?
We now also understand why when Hashem comes to a shul and
does not see ten men, he says " ???? ???? ???? ??? ". Why does it say; ???
??? -no man? It should say ??? ????? -there are no men to form a Minyan?!
(Simply understood, it is referring to a case where there are 9 men in the
shul, and they are waiting for a tenth man. They are only short one, so
Hashem asks "where is he"? Where is the ??? - the one man that they
need??) The explanation is that the word ??? stands for the words ??? ???
???? . Hashem gets angry that there is not ten men to total eleven ( ?-? ), and
to recite Kaddish, and request that Hashem’s name be increased by
answering the Amen Yehe Sheme Raba!
This is why David Hamelech began Tehilim with the words -???? ????
"fortunate is the man". David was alluding to this power that we have
through answering Amen Yehe Sheme Raba. The word ???? stands for ???
??? ???? ??? and ??? stands for ??? ??? ???? . By answering Amen Yehe
Sheme Raba with the proper concentration and longing for the name of
Hashem to be complete through the redemption, we cause a reaction in the
Shamayim and bring closer the !?????
May we merit having this focus, and appreciating how special it is to
pray with a Minyan, and how powerful it is to answer "Amen Yehe Sheme
Raba". With this we will have the proper concentration in our prayers, and
connect to Hashem thereby bringing the ultimate redemption. Amen.

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1002 Parashot found