april 9nd 2011
nisan 5th 5771
CONTROLLING OUR WORDS IS ONE OF THE GREATEST TRAITS THAT THE CREATOR HAS GIVEN US
by Rabbi David Hanania Pinto Shlita
At the beginning of Parsha Tazria it is written, “When a woman conceives and gives birth to a male” (Vayikra 12:2), and in Parsha Metzora we have, “This shall be the law of the metzora [leper]” (ibid. 14:2). The Gemara understands this word to be a contraction of motzi rah (he who “brings forth evil”), a reference to speaking ill of one’s fellow (Arachin 15b). Parsha Tazria also contains laws relating to the leper, allowing us to understand things in the following way: He who speaks Lashon Harah conceives and brings forth more of the same in the mouths of others, and from a tiny word of Lashon Harah a tremendous amount ensues, the memory of which cannot be erased.
We know that the Holy One, blessed be He, punishes and rewards people measure for measure (Sanhedrin 90a). Now when someone speaks Lashon Harah about his fellow, he causes people to distance themselves from that person, and therefore the Holy One, blessed be He, punishes him accordingly: He is struck with leprosy, his body is covered with lesions, and people are distanced from him, as it is written: “The leper in whom the plague is…alone shall he dwell; his dwelling shall be outside the camp” (Vayikra 13:45-46). My fellow Jews, we have a great lesson to learn from this. Sometimes we may find ourselves among friends, with the conversation going from one subject to the next, until finally with one slip of the tongue a person will speak Lashon Harah and thereby kill three people: The speaker himself, his listener, and the person being spoken of. It may happen that the speaker was not serious, or that he spoke in jest, spontaneously. Nevertheless his words have already been uttered. They have already entered the minds of his listeners, where they continue to have an effect.
Things are so serious that sometimes (or maybe often) people lose their jobs, or even their standing in society. Everyone scornfully looks down on them and keeps their distance, and all because of what? Because a few words were said in passing. Can we imagine what losses occur because of speech, or what losses we can cause with just a few words?
By reflecting a little in depth on this issue, we can understand the gravity of Lashon Harah, which makes people lose respect for one another and sows discord among them. Perhaps, after having thought about this, we will learn our lesson and change our lives. What exactly does this mean? We know that 24,000 disciples of Rabbi Akiva died, not because they spoke Lashon Harah per se, but because they did not show enough respect for one another.
The Sages also say that when King David’s soldiers went out to war, they died in battle despite the fact that they were great tzaddikim. However the soldiers of King Ahab, who were evildoers and idol worshippers, survived. This was due to the fact that King David’s soldiers had speakers of Lashon Harah among them, hence they died in battle, whereas unity reigned among King Ahab’s soldiers and they did not speak Lashon Harah. Hence they did not die in battle. From this we see that the sin of Lashon Harah is even more serious than not respecting others.
This still needs to be explained. Being that the punishment for Lashon Harah was leprosy, why did King David’s soldiers die in battle rather than contracting leprosy? Furthermore, since speaking Lashon Harah is more serious than not showing respect to others, why were Rabbi Akiva’s disciples (who had not spoken Lashon Harah, but simply showed a lack of respect) not struck with leprosy? Why were they instead punished so severely that they died before Shavuot, lacking even the merit to celebrate the giving of the Torah?
This can be explained in the following way: When a person does not show others proper respect, this is a serious sin that indicates the “beginning of disaster,” meaning that it is just the start of Lashon Harah. Especially among tzaddikim, a person who does not show proper respect for others is like one who has spoken Lashon Harah. Everyone can see how he lacks respect for others and recounts everything he sees. Actual Lashon Harah then results. Thus for the Holy One, blessed be He, neglecting the respect due to others is considered Lashon Harah. The punishment for this is very severe, for one who neglects showing others proper respect will eventually speak Lashon Harah and merit death.
All this concerns ordinary people. However for tzaddikim, if they commit the sin of Lashon Harah and are not careful about the respect due to others, the Holy One, blessed be He, is extremely exacting with them, as the Sages have said (Yebamot 121b, Bava Kama 50a). He therefore punishes them severely and they die. He does not warn them by inflicting leprosy upon them, for the Torah has already warned them to respect one another and not speak Lashon Harah. This is why King David’s soldiers (who were tzaddikim, yet spoke Lashon Harah) and Rabbi Akiva’s disciples (who were also tzaddikim, yet neglected showing others proper respect) were not struck with leprosy, but instead died.
As a consequence of all this, we realize just how careful we must be concerning the slightest hint of Lashon Harah, especially actual Lashon Harah. This is especially true in our time, when people take Lashon Harah so lightly and feel that they can say whatever they want, thinking that it is probably not Lashon Harah. Who can say what the true cause is for all the traffic accidents and illnesses that kill thousands of people each week? Perhaps it is due to our Lashon Harah, for King David’s soldiers and Rabbi Akiva’s disciples also died because they provoked Lashon Harah. Consequently, how much death is caused by actual Lashon Harah?
By renewing our love for one another, and by strengthening ourselves by speaking permitted and holy words, Hashem will put an end to our troubles. Amen, may it be so!
Guard Your Tongue!
Harm, Hate, and Scorn
Some people think that if Lashon Harah has been spoken about them, they are permitted to defend themselves by speaking about those who spoke derisively of them. Yet if they do not plan on speaking in a permitted way (such as by defending themselves in court), then their reaction is completely unjustified. Even when we are allowed to speak for a practical purpose, we must bear in mind that our words must solely be of a constructive nature, not wrongful. One who speaks must have no other goal but to be constructive. He must harbor no personal animosity, which would transform his pragmatic words into hateful ones. Not only is Lashon Harah wrong because of the harm it does, but also because it reveals a lack of love for the Jewish people. Intention is of paramount importance in this area. The Rambam explains in Hilchot Deot that, aside from this harm and absence of love, the fact of misrepresenting someone in speech (even speech that is not wrongful per se) is considered as a slight to his honor. It is disdainful to use a person as the subject of a frivolous conversation.
Mussar from the Parsha
The Sanctity of the Mouth is of the Utmost Importance
It is written, “For the person being purified, there shall be taken two live, clean birds” (Vayikra 14 4).
Rashi states: “Because plagues come about through Lashon Harah, which is caused by chattering, purification therefore requires birds, which chatter endlessly with twittering sounds.”
In his book Da’at Torah, Rabbi Yerucham of Mir states that the Holy One, blessed be He, considers an idle word as a contemptible remark. We learn this from the Rambam’s commentary on the Mishnah: “Shimon his son said, ‘All my days I grew up among the Sages, and I did not find anything better for one’s person than silence’ ” (Pirkei Avoth 1:17). In his commentary, the Rambam lists five different kinds of speech, the first three being: (1) Speech relating to mitzvot, such as Torah reading and study; (2) Forbidden speech; and (3) Contemptible speech that serves no useful purpose, yet is not considered sinful. The last kind includes ordinary conversations that people have about current events or various individuals, their physical health, financial situation, and so on. The Sages call all this “vain conversation.”
According to the Rambam, the Sages classify all speech that serves no useful purpose as “vain conversation.” He also teaches that all such speech is called unsightly. Many people are accustomed to sitting down to discuss current affairs and chatting for nothing, yet such conversations are unsightly and repulsive in Hashem’s eyes.
This is why people must understand the great importance of speech, for man’s greatness and pre-eminence over animals is demonstrated through speech. The Targum translates the verse, “The man became a living soul” (Bereshith 2:7) as, “The man became a speaking soul.” From here we see that speech comes from the breath of life that the Creator breathed into man from Himself, a breath that is a Divine spark. By speaking forbidden words, a man takes this extraordinary power and uses it to sin.
We find this idea alluded to in the verse, “Man has no advantage over a beast, for all is vanity” (Kohelet 3:19). The word ein (“has no”) is composed of the initials of adam yesh neshama (“man has a soul”), and this divine soul is what distinguishes man from beast through the power of speech, which constitutes man’s great advantage over all the other creatures. Now since we have shown that the power of speech, instilled in man, is a precious gift from the Creator, everyone must strive to seriously weigh his words before they leave his mouth. The book Chovot HaLevavot states, “May it seem as difficult in your eyes to remove a word from your mouth as it is to remove a dinar from your pocket.” Even when we have to relate practical matters, such as giving information for a shidduch, we should not relate negative information directly, but instead convey it through suggestion. As the Vilna Gaon wrote, a person must guard what comes out of his mouth in purity; he must not tarnish it. The Vilna Gaon derives this from Jonathan’s conversation with David, for they spoke indirectly, using arrows. Why did Jonathan not explicitly tell David that his father Saul wanted to kill him? He had the right to, for nothing could be more practical than that information! Since he did not, it means that even when remarks are constructive in nature, and even when we are permitted to say them according to a strict view of Halachah, it is still better to protect the sanctity of our mouth, which was intended solely for words of Torah.
– Ta’am VaDa’at Vayikra, Tuvcha Yabiu
The Healing of the Leper by Means of the Kohen
It is written, “He shall be brought to the kohen” (Vayikra 14:2).
Commenting on this verse, the Chafetz Chaim said: “It is surprising that the purification of the leper was not entrusted to a special doctor, but instead to the kohen. There is a great lesson to be learned here. The purification of the leper depends on what emerges from the mouth of the kohen, as we learn in the Mishnah: ‘Only a kohen may declare them [indications of leprosy] unclean or clean’ (Negaim 3:1). Why does the kohen have such an influence? It is because leprosy comes through the power of sinful speech, hence the Torah commanded leprosy to be healed through the power of speech, measure for measure.”
The Chafetz Chaim used the analogy of a large factory to explain the power of speech as compared to the other mitzvot: Operating in a factory were 248 machines, one to weave silk, another to weave other precious fabrics, and so on. Among those machines was one that was more important than the rest. Several people where guarding it, and there were signs that a license was required to operate it. It turned out that this special machine was connected to all the other machines, and if a malfunction were to occur, all the other machines would stop. The 248 machines are the 248 positive mitzvot that Hashem gave us, and that special machine is our power of speech, which was implanted in man. A person who desires life must guard his tongue from evil, for it is the most marvelous gift that the Creator has given man. He must therefore watch what comes from his mouth with the greatest of care and prevent it from uttering forbidden words.
Gold on the Outside, Leprosy on the Inside
It is written, “When you arrive in the land of Canaan…I will place a leprous affliction upon a house in the land of your possession” (Vayikra 14:34).
Citing the teaching of the Midrash on this verse, Rashi states: “This is an announcement to them that afflictions will come upon them because the Amorites hid treasures of gold in the walls of their houses throughout the 40 years that the Israelites were in the desert, and because of the affliction [the Israelite] tears down the house and finds them.” This teaches us that in Eretz Israel, even external indications of leprosy really enclosed treasures of gold. In other countries, however, gold shines on the outside, but beneath that glow we find a great amount of plagues and leprosy. One who wishes to protect his soul must distance himself from it.
Nothing is Better than Proper Speech
The Midrash recounts the following story: “Rabbi Shimon ben Gamliel said to Tabbai his servant, ‘Go and buy me good food in the market.’ He went and bought him tongue. He said to him, ‘Go and buy me bad food in the market.’ He went and bought him tongue. He said to him, ‘What is this? When I told you to get good food you bought me tongue, and when I told you to get bad food you also bought me tongue!’ He replied, ‘Good comes from it and bad comes from it. When the tongue is good there is nothing better, and when it is bad there is nothing worse’ ” (Vayikra Rabba 33:1).
Lashon Harah and Baseless Hatred Run Counter to Awaiting Mashiach
In his book Pachad David (Parsha Yitro), Rabbi David Pinto Shlita raises two objections to the Gemara’s statement that when a man is judged in the next world, he is asked: “Did you await salvation?” (Shabbat 31a).
The first objection that Rabbi David raises is the following: How could tzaddikim be asked this question, since it is obvious that they hoped for salvation? The question is therefore moot. The second objection is how this question could be addressed to the wicked, for they did not know what salvation was. Therefore since they did not understand the concept of Mashiach, how could they await his arrival? Thus the question becomes moot in both cases, and G-d has no reason to ask it. Rabbi David responds by saying that the question is put to those who certainly knew about salvation and Mashiach, yet nevertheless delayed their arrival. These people were the ones who spoke Lashon Harah and were accustomed to baseless hatred, which especially drives away the Shechinah. Such people will be asked, “If you knew about salvation, why did you delay it by your selfishness, thereby preventing yourselves from awaiting it as you should?”
Leprosy Due to the Departure of the Shechinah
Rabbi Judah Halevi wrote that when the Shechinah was absent from Israel, “Their intelligence waned, their bodies deteriorated, and their beauty faded. The effect of the disappearance of the divine light became noticeable in every individual. One can easily see how the breath of a person is suddenly lost through fear and sorrow, whereby the body also suffers. On women and boys who go out at night, one may sometimes see black and green marks, the result of their weak nerves. This is attributed to demons, but diseases of body and mind are often produced by the sight of people who have died or were killed” (The Kuzari 2:62).
“He shall be brought to the Kohen” – The Gaon Rabbi Israel Meir Hacohen of Radin
It is written, “This shall be the law of the leper…he shall be brought to the kohen” (Vayikra 14:2).
The plague of tzara’at (“leprosy”) no longer exists in our time, and we no longer have a kohen to whom we can bring the leper. On the other hand, we unfortunately find the plague of Lashon Harah in our time. In his book Divrei Emet, Rabbi Alexander Moshe Lapidot Zatzal describes the change in the person who speaks Lashon Harah: “ ‘It shall become in the skin of his flesh the plague of leprosy’ [Vayikra 13:2]. This concerns the sins that depend on the mouth and the tongue, which are the plagues that occur to individuals, for most people allow themselves to be ensnared by them. Such a person would be brought to the kohen, a great man among his brothers. This is the true tzaddik, the author of Chafetz Chaim. The person in question should therefore study his precious books, which will teach him how to act in this area. Happy is he who studies his holy books, filled with precious things, in the goal of practicing them. Such a person will save his soul from the abyss and merit joy and tranquility.”
Being Strict With What Enters and Leaves the Mouth
It is written, “When a man shall have in the skin of his flesh a rising” (Vayikra 13:2).
The Sages have stressed that the plague of leprosy results from the sin of Lashon Harah (Arachin 15b). Rabbi Israel Salanter Zatzal said that we can learn something from the juxtaposition of the passage on the leper with that of forbidden foods in the preceding parsha. That is, we must not be more lenient with transgressions that involve what leaves our mouths (forbidden words), than with transgressions that involve what enters our mouths (forbidden foods). Many people are very meticulous when it comes to the kashrut of what enters their mouths. Yet when it comes to the kashrut of the words that leave their mouths, they are far from strict. Rabbi Salanter said that, on the contrary, with the sin of Lashon Harah, it is not animals that we are eating (ochlim, which can be understood as being from the root of kilayon [“destruction”]), but rather the dignity of man.
Regarding Lashon Harah and Leprosy in Our Time
Many people ask how it is that in our time, people who speak Lashon Harah are not struck by leprosy. Me’am Loez explains that the leprosy mentioned in the Torah afflicts both body and soul. If it does not attack the body, it attacks the soul. Now leprosy of the soul is worse than leprosy of the body, as the Zohar states: In the palace of Hashem, there is a special chamber that is called negah tzara’at [the plague of leprosy], where the souls of those who have spoken Lashon Harah are purified through suffering. The Chafetz Chaim answered this question in another way: Since today we have neither the Temple nor offerings to purify the leper and atone for him, the Holy One, blessed be He, has shown us compassion by not punishing us, since we cannot rectify or atone for this sin.
Reasons for the Mitzvot
As Representatives of Hashem, the Kohanim are at the Head of Society
Although the laws dealing with leprosy are among the most severe in the Torah and contain many details, leprosy in and of itself is still not enough to render a person impure or isolate him. As specified in the Torah, then repeated in tractate Negaim and restated in the Rambam’s Hilchot Tumat Tzara’at (ch. 9), impurity also depends on what the kohen says. Even if the kohen is young or unsophisticated, the sage explains the situation and he decides to free or isolate him. Elsewhere we find that Torah rulings also depend on the kohen, as in the case of the unintentional killer who is sent to a city of refuge. Concerning him the Torah states, “He must dwell in his city of refuge until the death of the Kohen Gadol” (Bamidbar 35:28).
To explain this, the Sages have said that the kohen is the one who represents G-d’s Sanctuary among the Jewish people. The Kohen Gadol is therefore the head of these representatives, meaning that he is at the head of the community of Israel. We also find in Parsha Shoftim that in the head court, located “in the place that He shall choose,” the natural Sanhedrin will be composed of kohanim from the tribe of Levi. Consequently the death of the Kohen Gadol marked the end of an era for the entire people, and as such it was a time for ending the punishment of the unintentional killer. Such a person had been chassed from his land and from society, as it is said concerning the first murderer in Parsha Bereshith: “A fugitive and a wanderer shall you be on the earth” (Bereshith 4:12). He is therefore excluded from the society in which he killed a person. However when the Kohen Gadol dies (thereby renewing society), he is no longer excluded from it.
The same applies to leprosy, which entails an exclusion from society. As opposed to a person who becomes impure by contact with a dead body or by a bodily emission (resulting in exclusion from one or two camps, depending on the case), the leper is excluded from all three camps. The Sages have said that this exclusion occurs because he distanced people in society by speaking improperly. By itself the “plague” (nega) demonstrates that Hashem’s hand has “touched” (nega) him by putting a sign in his flesh with leprosy (whereas if his entire skin is completely white, without a distinctive sign, he is pure). This excludes him from the company of G-d’s people. However the plague itself does not exclude him until Hashem’s representative, the kohen, confirms his condition. The kohanim are the ones who stand between Hashem and His people. They are the ones who bring the offerings of the people to their G-d, and who return the blessings of G-d to His people. The kohanim are not like the rest of the people, who inherit a parcel of land, for Hashem Himself is their inheritance. The Gemara discusses whether the kohanim are really the messengers of G-d or the messengers of the Jewish people (Yoma 19ab). However as Tosaphot state (passage beginning with MiEika), the question centers only on how they are perceived and the halachic consequences of their mission. They are not true emissaries sent by the people, but instead are those whom Hashem has chosen, as it is written: “Now you, bring near to yourself Aaron your brother and his sons with him from among the Children of Israel, that he may be a kohen to Me” (Shemot 28:1). This means that the kohanim were to stand, as it were, between Hashem and the people.
A Matter of Education
Humility, But Not Lowliness
It is written, “For the person being purified, there shall be taken…scarlet thread and hyssop” (Vayikra 14:4).
Rashi explains in the name of the Sages: “What is his cure that he may be healed? He should lower himself from his arrogance like a worm [used to produce the scarlet thread] and like hyssop.”
A person who speaks Lashon Harah acts as if he were free to say whatever he wants about others. However the dignity of man is too great for him to be a conversation piece, especially when the things said of him contain Lashon Harah. Even if it turns out that such words did not cause actual harm, and even if it was not actual Lashon Harah that was spoken, but rather empty words, this falls within the category of, “You shall not go about as a talebearer among your people” (Vayikra 19:16), as the Rambam explains in Hilchot Deot (beginning of ch. 10). One who makes others a topic of conversation considers himself to be superior to them, and he is described as a “tongue that speaks arrogant things” (Tehillim 12:4). Thus in the suffering of the leper – who was alienated from society – the Sages recognized a punishment that was “measure for measure.” It was punishment in kind for the sin of Lashon Harah, by which the leper alienated others with words. Thus for the offering of the one being purified (wherein he must take scarlet thread and hyssop), the Sages saw an allusion to the reparation and countering of his pride through humility. While a haughty person highlights his own importance over that of others, a humble person has regard for others. In fact he has regard for Hashem’s entire world, which is why he obeys Hashem’s desires and does not develop a will of his own that ventures in the opposite direction. Many think that a humble person denies having any virtues, but that is not what we see at the end of tractate Sotah, where the Sages describe themselves as possessing the virtue of humility. This trait does not mean that a person diminishes his importance, but instead that he distances himself from his ego, as Rashi said above. Humility consists of recognizing one’s virtues, yet knowing that they come from the Holy One, blessed be He, Who gave them to us as a gift. Possessing virtues is therefore not something to be proud of, just as a person is not proud of something that is not really his. Instilling students with a feeling of lowliness not only warps their sense of humility, but also leads to hopelessness and actually encourages them to neglect themselves, for they think that their mitzvot hold no importance. This is why people should be taught to respect themselves at the same time as they are taught humility. They must be given a sense of their own importance because of the ability they have to elevate themselves. Rabbi Chaim Shmuelevitz Zatzal used to say that the way of attaining self-respect is to follow what the Sages said in the Mishnah: “Who is honored? He who honors others” (Pirkei Avoth 4:1). The honor of others is valuable in his eyes, not being dependent upon the lowliness of others, but on his own virtues. He can then attain great spiritual heights.
Your Eyes Shall Behold Your Teacher
Rabbi Aryeh Leib Zunz
The gaon Rabbi Aryeh Leib Zunz Zatzal, popularly known as “Rabbi Leibush Charif,” was born to Rabbi Moshe in 5538. The nephew of the gaon Rabbi Yonatan Eibeshutz Zatzal, he came from a very distinguished line of Torah scholars. From his early youth he was known as a child prodigy, possessing an exceedingly sharp (“charif”) mind, hence the name that people called him to his dying day. At the age of 24 he published his first book, Ya’alat Chen, for which he received the approbation of the great Noda B’Yehuda. The latter wrote that although he had never before given his written approval, his vow to abstain from doing so did not apply to such an extraordinary man as Rabbi Leibush. He therefore released himself from it. Rabbi Leibush stayed in Prague for a few years, after which he went to live in Pressburg. There he also became famous, but his renown as an exceptional gaon came primarily from the town of Plotzk, where he opened a yeshiva and taught in every field of Torah.
For a certain time the gaon and author of Chiddushei HaRim, the Ger Rebbe (known as the “Polish illui”), was among his students. However he left because of a telling incident. A page was once missing in a Gemara, and Rabbi Leibush, with his dynamic mind, made the conceptual connection between the two adjacent pages, as if nothing was missing in between. At that point the Chiddushei HaRim said, “I want to learn a Torah of truth, not a Torah of intellectual flair.”
Rabbi Leibush wrote very many books, including Mishivat Nafesh, Responsa of the Maharal, Ya’in Mesameach, Melo HaOmer, Pnei Aryeh, Tiv Kiddushin, Get Mekushar, Geresh Yerachim, Magen HaAleph, Ayelet Ahavim, Ya’alat Chen, Simchat Yom Tov, and Ma'ayan HaChochma. Many Jews have helped in the publication of his books, an effort that continues to this day. These people, many of whom were in need of divine help, witnessed their deliverance with their own eyes because they helped in publishing his books.
Rabbi Leibush left this world on Iyar 3, 5593 and was buried in the Warsaw cemetery. Engraved on his tombstone is his assurance to help any deserving individual who assists in publishing his manuscripts in book form. May the memory of the righteous be blessed.
The Two Components of Marriage
Concerning the creation of a woman as an ezer kenegdo (“a helper before him” – Bereshith 2:18), the Ramban explains that the goal was not for her to bear children, but instead for man not to be alone, as the verse explicitly states. However the fact that man’s helper was female, not male, writes the Bach (Even HaEzer, par. 1), was for the goal of bearing children. Men and women should therefore realize that besides the mitzvah of marriage for bearing children, there exists another principle in Hashem’s creation. This principle, even if it is not considered a mitzvah, states: “Derech eretz [proper conduct] precedes Torah” (Vayikra Rabba 9:3). In other words, a human being should not be alone, but with someone else. The Tur (Even HaEzer ibid.) speaks specifically about these two points: “Blessed be the Name of Hashem, Who desires the welfare of His creatures, and Who knew that it was not good for man to be alone. Thus He made ‘a helper before him.’ ” Here the Tur writes that the main element of Creation is Hashem’s desire to do good, in order that man should not be alone. The Tur adds a second point, which embodies a mitzvah: “In addition, the goal of man’s creation is that he be fruitful and multiply, an impossible task without a helper. This is why He commanded him to cleave to the help that He gave to him. Every man must therefore marry a woman in order to be fruitful and multiply.”
A True Story
Honoring One’s Parents: Theory and Practice
In his youth, Rabbi Salman Mussafi Zatzal studied tractate Kiddushin with the tzaddik Rabbi Tzedaka Hutzein Zatzal. When they came to the section dealing with the mitzvah of honoring one’s parents, they studied the commentators as they normally would, as well as the poskim who dealt with the subject of proper conduct with one’s parents. When they finished the subject, Rabbi Tzedaka asked Rabbi Salman, “When your mother is at home, do you rise before her as required?” Rabbi Salman replied, “I will not hide it. The fact is that I do not rise before her, but content myself on leaning forward in her presence. I do not get up completely because I’m afraid that people will mock me.”
Without thinking too deeply, Rabbi Tzedaka stopped studying and closed the Gemara. He said, “Today we will not continue to study. It is not possible to study without practicing. If you set things straight, we can continue studying tomorrow.” From that day on, Rabbi Salman began to stand up completely before his mother. The day after that, he came to see Rabbi Tzedaka and told him that he had rectified matters and could continue studying with him.
– Olamo Shel Tsaddik, as heard from Rabbi Salman