August 29th, 2015
elul 14th 5775
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The Sacred War of the Eyes
by Rabbi David Pinto Shlita
Parsha Ki-Teitzei is always read during the month of Elul, the month of mercy and selichot. It is the most fitting time for us to draw closer to Hashem, conquer our bad habits, and sanctify and purify our thoughts in order to arrive at the day of judgement before the King of the universe and be inscribed for a life of goodness and peace. During these days, we sound the shofar to stir the strings of the soul and awaken the heart, so that a person seeks to return to the Creator and improve his conduct and behavior. The commentators have said that the term shofar has the same root as shipur (“improvement”), for the entire goal of sounding the shofar is to awaken a desire to improve our deeds and rectify our way of life.
I would like to add that the shofar is also called a trumpet, for it is written: “You shall sound [utekatem] the trumpets” (Bamidbar 10:10). Trumpets (chatzotzrot) allude to the courtyards (chatzerot) of Hashem. The Torah asks a person to plant (itka) his tent stake with all his might in the courtyards of Hashem, meaning that he should dwell in the Beit HaMidrash to study Torah, just as King David asked “to dwell in the house of Hashem all the days of my life” (Tehillim 27:4). In fact if a person is wise enough to pitch his tent within the walls of the Beit HaMidrash, within the courtyards of Hashem, he is guaranteed protection from all harm, both spiritual and material. The evil inclination will not be able to defeat him, as the Sages have said: “If that wretch meets you, drag it to the Beit HaMidrash. If it is made of stone, it will dissolve; if iron, it will shatter” (Kiddushin 30b). This is the allusion we find in the term shofar, for whoever seeks to sanctify and purify his soul must diligently study Torah in the courtyards of Hashem, where he will be protected and guarded from all harm, so much so that Amalek will be unable to defeat him.
This week’s parsha begins with, “When you go out to war against your enemies, and Hashem your G-d will deliver them into your hand” (Devarim 21:10). If a person goes out to war against his evil inclination, he is promised that Hashem will safeguard him and that the evil inclination will be captured and trodden upon without any possibility of arising. However the Torah continues by stating, “and you see among its captivity a woman who is beautiful of form, and you desire her” (v.11) – meaning that although the evil inclination is already imprisoned and under control, unable to tempt a person into doing evil – all this applies to other desires. Insofar as being drawn to a woman or looking at something forbidden, a person is still not victorious. He is not immune to it, and despite the victory that he experienced in his battle against the evil inclination, it still has the ability to surprise him and set a trap that he may fall into. Thus suddenly, without wanting to, he will be faced with something that is forbidden to look at, as the verse states: “and you see among its captivity a woman who is beautiful of form, and you desire her.” A casual glance is liable to blind him and make him fall into the trap of desire, all because when it comes to being attracted to women, it requires a much greater effort to control than other desires that dwell in the human heart. I’m surprised by people who attend celebrations, look at women face to face, and chat with them about meaningless things, all without worrying in the least about this serious and terrible sin. The Torah warns us: “You will bring her into your house” (Devarim 21:12), meaning that we shouldn’t believe that looking at a woman and thinking of her, whoever she may be, is insignificant because it doesn’t involve an actual sin. In fact we are warned that looking at her is liable to lead to, “You will bring her into your house.”
This means that she has the power to infiltrate the depths of a person’s soul and access the recesses of his mind. Even if a forbidden thought is asleep within him, it still has the ability to awaken one day and under any circumstance, even while he is praying or learning Torah.
Just as a camera captures an image, what the eyes capture is engraved upon the brain. It is possible that when a person is standing in prayer before Hashem, a strange thought will suddenly arise and blind his reasoning. In that case, his entire prayer will have been channeled to the forces of impurity. As for a person who has experienced this without being careful to guard his eyes and purify his thoughts, he should realize with certainty that the root of Amalek is within him, and that doubts as to faith and how G-d guides the world will arise in him and multiply without stop. Even if he puts an effort into learning Torah and meticulously observing mitzvot, a certain coldness [in his service of Hashem] will develop despite his best intentions, all because he is far from holiness and purity. That is why we must put as much of an effort as possible into guarding the sanctity of our eyes and purifying them. This is the proper way to discard the “Amalek” that is found within the heart, for doubts vanish on account of holiness, and instead of coldness in the service of Hashem, the heart will actually be driven by a sacred fire for Torah and mitzvot.
We can now understand that when a person subdues his evil inclination and conquers it, he should be careful not to boast and think that he has completely defeated it. On the contrary, he should continue to pay careful attention to not looking at women, lest he think that nothing vile can affect him if he looks at them because he has been careful not to do anything with them.
Simply looking at a woman is enough to “bring her into your house,” which is the body. This can result in tremendous harm, to the point of fathering a rebellious son who does not listen to his parents. This is the
“Amalek” that hides in the heart of man and arouses doubts in terms of faith and the way to serve Hashem – all without the person himself realizing that this occurred because he looked at women. He thinks that looking at them has no spiritual consequences. On the contrary, the fact that he looked at them prevents him from fearing G-d, and spiritually speaking he will go from bad to worse, until he arrives at thoughts that will truly put him in danger.
May it be G-d’s will to allow us to erase the memory of Amalek from our hearts, and may our hearts be completely devoted to serving Him. Amen and Amen.
The Words of the Sages
The Rosh Yeshivas Reveal their Secret
In the Torah world, the first week of zeman Elul has just ended. Thousands of bnei Torah, outstanding men, have returned to their diligent study of Torah, which they have committed themselves to day and night. The crucial foundation upon which every ben Torah can rely as the key to their success is the sacred principle of strictly adhering to fixed times for learning Torah. As mentioned in his book Ohr Letzion, Chochma U’Mussar, the gaon Rabbi Ben Tzion Abba Shaul (the Rosh Yeshiva of Porat Yosef) would often say that the times for study sessions established by the yeshiva are sacred. We must never avoid these times for study, even when excessively tired. If someone is overcome by fatigue and cannot continue studying, he should sleep at the table instead of cancelling the time devoted to Torah study, a time that he must be committed to.
If the morning study session ends at 1:00 pm, it means 1:00, not 12:58. Likewise if the study session is scheduled to start at 9:00 am, it means 9:00, not 9:01. However a person who arrives early demonstrates his respect for Torah. We see this in our everyday lives, for when someone has an important meeting to attend, he leaves early in case there are delays along the way. We shouldn’t enter the Beit HaMidrash as if it were an ordinary building!
I’m Studying Now
The Rosh Yeshiva of Kol Torah, Rabbi Shlomo Zalman Auerbach, was firmly committed to establishing fixed study times for learning Torah, not to interrupt them for anything, and to deal with matters – even the most urgent – only in between study sessions. He recognized that it was precisely as a result of such behavior that he could reach such a high level of Torah knowledge.
He acted like this from the time of his youth. Study sessions were sacred to him, and he guarded them like the apple of his eyes. During that period, his parents lived in indescribable hardship. However his father, who was a tzaddik, did not want to go into debt, and therefore Rabbi Shlomo Zalman committed himself to taking care of the needs of the house. He also assumed the family’s debts in order to lighten their financial burden. Every technical procedure connected to the gemach [free loan fund] that they managed was done solely in between Torah study sessions, never encroaching upon them.
Rabbi Shlomo’s son, the gaon Rabbi Ezriel, said: “There are many stories about the extraordinary deeds of kindness performed by my father. People almost had the impression that our house was a charity institution. However everyone knew that he only engaged in acts of charity between Torah study sessions. At home, all we saw him do was study Torah from morning till night without stop!”
In his eulogy for Rabbi Shlomo, the gaon Rabbi Yehuda Ades (the Rosh Yeshiva of Kol Yaakov) recounted a story told by an outstanding avrech who used to study with Rabbi Shlomo: They had decided to study together between 10:00 pm and 1:00 am, and one night as they were in the middle of learning, they heard a knock at the door. At that point Rabbi Shlomo said to the avrech, “Pretend you didn’t hear anything. We’re studying now.” On another occasion, people began knocking loudly at the door and shouting, “It’s a matter of life and death!” To this Rabbi Shlomo replied: “I’m not a doctor. I’m studying now. Come back at 2:00 am, and I’ll see you then. Right now, I can’t be interrupted.”
Be Completely Focused
Rabbi Chaim Friedlander, the mashgiach of the Ponevezh yeshiva, conducted himself with an extraordinary degree of calm and self-control. As a result, he was able to successfully accomplish various things in a very short amount of time. Each week, he would give more than 20 classes and eight lectures. He had a precise and fixed schedule every day, a schedule to which things were constantly being added – one thing followed by another and then by another. What should his priorities be? What should he forgo? It was by considering each of his steps that the mashgiach, who found a time for accomplishing everything, distinguished himself. For example, the wedding of Rabbi Chaim’s son was scheduled to take place at 7:00 pm. On that same day, however, Rabbi Chaim participated in a meeting organized by El Hamekorot, a meeting that lasted until 7:00 pm! During his daughter’s engagement party, Rabbi Chaim suddenly disappeared, and it turned out that he was participating in a meeting for the same organization! On another occasion, a young man who had missed a marriage preparation class asked the mashgiach to help him catch up. The time that Rabbi Chaim found to give him a refresher course was one hour before the wedding of his own son!
On the day that Rabbi Chaim was told of his grave illness, he first went to consult Rav Shach. He then returned to the yeshiva to study Mussar and pray Arvit, and only then did he return home, where he was met by a couple experiencing marriage difficulties.
He sat down to talk with them for about an hour before finally turning to his family. “Why so calm?” someone dared asked him. He replied, “It’s simple: When you’re praying, you should only focus on praying. When you’re learning, you should only focus on learning. That’s how to achieve peace of mind.”
One of Rabbi Chaim’s friends once said, “Whoever heard of the various endeavors carried out by the mashgiach would think that he was occupied with dozens of activities each day. But that’s not true. He was occupied with one thing only, then by another, and then by another…. However one thing never encroached on another.”
Guard Your Tongue
An Extremely Grave Sin
Speaking scornfully of the dead is also forbidden. Our poskim have written that scorning the dead and giving them a bad reputation, even if they were just ordinary or uneducated people, is a prohibition of the Elders that is accompanied by a decree of excommunication. How much more does scorning a Torah scholar constitute a grave sin that is punishable by excommunication (Yoreh Deah 243:7). The prohibition against scorning a Torah scholar applies even if his person is being disparaged, and how much more if his Torah is being disparaged!
– Chafetz Chaim
At the Source
Measure for Measure
It is written, “You shall surely lift them up with him” (Devarim 22:4).
Our Sages have explained that a person who sees his neighbor’s animal collapsed beneath the weight of its load is obligated to help him reload it, as it is written: “You shall surely lift them up with him.” However if the owner of the animal says to him: “Since it’s a mitzvah for you, go ahead and load it if you want,” he is then exempt from loading it. In his book Sha'arei Yeshua, the gaon Rabbi Yeshua Attiya Zatzal explains that this teaching applies to all areas of life. If we sanctify ourselves below, we will be sanctified above. If we ask in prayer, “Guard my tongue from evil and my lips from speaking deceitfully,” and we pay close attention to fulfilling what we have requested, then Heaven will help us guard our tongue and lips. Yet if a person makes this request and then forgets about it, doing nothing on his end to refrain from speaking forbidden words, why should Hashem help him?
Hashem Supports All Who Fall
It is written, “You shall surely send the mother away and take the young for yourself” (Devarim 22:7).
This passage, which deals with chasing the mother bird from the nest, begins with the letter kaf and ends with the letter mem, which combined have a numerical value of 60. Likewise, the passage dealing with a guardrail on the roof and sowing mixed seeds also begins with a kaf and ends with a mem. Now the letter samech (numerical value 60) is connected to the verse, “Hashem somech [supports] all who fall” (Tehillim 145:14).
One day a man said to his son, “Climb to the top of a high perch and bring me down some young birds.” He went up to the top of the perch, let the mother go, and took the young ones. But upon his return he fell and died. Where was his promised longevity? Hashem gave him a long life in the World to Come (Chullin 142a). As for the construction of a guardrail on a roof, Hashem somech (supports) all those liable to fall. As for the prohibition, “You shall not sow your vineyard with a mixture” (Devarim 22:9), we are only guilty of transgressing it if we sow wheat, barley, and grape seeds in one handful (Berachot 22a), in which case we must burn everything. However if we don’t sow in this way, Hashem somech (supports) all who fall.
– Kli Yakar
No Sin in You
It is written, “If you refrain from vowing, there will be no sin in you” (Devarim 23:23).
The Rambam explains this passage as follows: “Although it is a mitzvah to consecrate or make a vow to give something to the Temple, or to give its value to the Temple – and it befits man to do so in order to control his desires, not to be stingy, and to fulfill what the Sages have commanded: ‘Honor Hashem with your money’ – nevertheless if he never does any of these things, it is not serious. The Torah testifies to this by saying, ‘If you refrain from vowing, there will be no sin in you’ ” (Hilchot Arachin 8:12).
The Light of the Zohar
Your Camp Shall be Holy
Rabbi Shimon quoted the verse, “For Hashem your G-d walks in the midst of your camp to rescue you and to deliver your enemies before you; so your camp shall be holy” [Devarim 23:15]. He said that this refers to the Shechinah, which dwells in the midst of Israel – and especially in exile – to protect them constantly and on every side from all other peoples, so they cannot destroy them.
It has been taught that the enemies of Israel have no power over them until Israel weakens the power of the Shechinah before the princes who are appointed over the other nations. Only then do the latter have power over them [the Jewish people] and enact cruel decrees against them.
Yet when they return in repentance to her, she breaks the power of all these princes and the enemies of Israel, and she takes vengeance for them upon everyone.
This is why “your camp shall be holy” – a person must not defile himself through sin and transgress the commandments of the Torah.
– Zohar III:75ab
In the Light of the Parsha
By Rabbi David Pinto Shlita
The Role of the Guardrail in the Jewish Home
It is written, “If you build a new house, you shall make a guardrail for your roof so that you will not place blood in your house if anyone falls” (Devarim 22:8).
The fight against the evil inclination concerns us all, in every place and at every moment. Each of us has the power to defeat it, and once we have defeated it, we must build our house.
Now every Jew is compared to a house, for the Shechinah dwells in it. In fact on the verse, “Let them make a Sanctuary for Me, that I may dwell among them” (Shemot 25:8), the Sages note that the verse does not say “in it,” but rather “among them” – meaning among each and every one of them (Rabbeinu Ephraim, ad loc.).
According to what we have said, I would like to explain why the passage concerning the guardrail is juxtaposed to the passage on going out to war. The Torah tells us: When you build your house, think of establishing a fence at every place where the evil inclination can enter and make you fall, causing a death in your home.
Let us add that the roof is the highest place in the house. Furthermore, the Torah tells us: When you go out to war against your enemies, and Hashem your G-d delivers them into your hand, be sure not to grow proud or say, “See, I defeated my evil inclination and built for myself a new house in which the Shechinah can reside. Why do I still need to serve my Creator?” The Torah warns us by commanding: “You shall make a guardrail for your roof,” meaning that even if you have confidence and are certain that you have perfected your service of G-d, our Sages have said: “Do not be sure of yourself until the day you die” (Pirkei Avoth 2:4)!
Furthermore, to prevent you from falling and causing a death in your house, the Torah advises us: “Remember what Amalek did to you” (Devarim 25:17). Now the name Amalek has the same numerical value as the word ram (“elevated”), a reference to pride – the guise under which Amalek presents itself to make Israel sin.
Also, the term hama'akeh (“the guardrail”) has the same numerical value as the word rach (“gentle”), which alludes to the Sages’ teaching that we must always be as gentle as the reed, rather than as unyielding as the cedar (Ta'anit 20a). We must not grow proud and say, “I no longer need to fight my evil inclination,” for it is written: “He who increases will have his life prolonged, but he who does not increase will have his life taken away” (Ta'anit 31a). We must therefore wage this battle throughout our entire lives.
Men of Faith
Stories of the Tzaddikim from the Pinto Family
Accounts from the Life of Rabbi Haim Pinto Hagadol in Honor of his Hilloula on Elul 26
Numerous crowns have been attached to the name of Rabbi Haim Pinto Hagadol, may his merit protect us. His incredible sanctity, the miracles he performed, his kindnesses toward the Jewish people, and especially the “crown of Torah” – Rabbi Haim Pinto’s Torah knowledge – through which he was able to act for the Jewish people.
His diligence in Torah study was known even by his contemporaries. However they didn’t know everything, for Rabbi Haim Pinto studied Torah with celestial beings. Some people were able to learn of this, but such accounts only become known after his death. Here is one such account (taken from Makor HaHaim):
Every night around midnight, Rabbi Haim Pinto began his day in the service of G-d with the strength of a lion. At that same hour, his shamash Rabbi Aharon Ibn Haim would begin serving him by preparing a glass of tea.
One night the shamash heard not one, but two voices emanating from Rabbi Haim’s room. He thought to himself, “If the Rav is studying with someone tonight, I should prepare a glass of tea for his guest as well.”
Proceeding to action, he brought two glasses into the Rav’s room.
When daytime arrived, Rabbi Haim summoned his shamash after Shacharit and said to him: “Tell me, why did you bring me two glasses of tea last night, rather than one, as you normally do?”
Rabbi Aharon replied, “I heard you speaking with someone, and I thought it was proper to serve your guest as well.”
Rabbi Haim nodded his head in silence, looked at Rabbi Aharon, and said: “Fortunate are you, my son, to have heard the voice of Eliyahu HaNavi. His was the second voice that you heard last night. I am now ordering not to reveal this to anyone.”
Rabbi Aharon obeyed his Rav’s order for years, not even hinting at what his ears had heard that night.
Yet when Rabbi Haim left this world, Rabbi Aharon felt that the time was right to reveal this incredible secret about Eliyahu HaNavi, who was studying as Rabbi Haim Pinto’s chavruta.
Along the same lines is a story involving Rabbi Makhlouf Loeb (taken from Makor HaHaim):
Numerous people went to see Rabbi Haim to resolve issues connected to the Jewish community in Mogador. Among these people was Rabbi Makhlouf Loeb, who one night came running to see the Rav due to an important and urgent matter that had to be dealt with immediately.
It was late at night, and Rabbi Makhlouf located the Rav’s room by the candle that illuminated it. When he entered the room, however, he saw two people: One was Rabbi Haim Pinto, his face shining with incredible brilliance, but the other person was someone whom Rabbi Makhlouf did not know, though he seemed like an angel. He wanted to approach them, but he suddenly felt his knees trembling and tremendous fear overcoming him. At that point he immediately turned around and fled!
On the following day, when Rabbi Makhlouf met Rabbi Haim Pinto, the latter said to him: “Fortunate are you, Rabbi Makhlouf, for having seen the face of Eliyahu HaNavi.” Rabbi Makhlouf was overjoyed, but his heart was afraid of being punished for having seen the face of Eliyahu HaNavi. He begged Rabbi Haim to pray so he would not be punished by an early death. The Rav promised to pray for him, and to ask for mercy so he would not die prematurely.
Heaven accepted this prayer, and Rabbi Makhlouf lived for a long time. He himself described this story in his own prayer book, and his sons and grandsons, who served the Pinto family, transmitted it to succeeding generations.
Greater than in Life
Our teacher Rabbi David Hanania Pinto Shlita has often spoken and written about the tzaddik’s great power to perform miracles on the day of his Hilloula.
We see concrete examples of deliverance and great success among all the Jews who come to pray by the grave of the tzaddik, as well as among all who come to ask for a blessing by the merit of the Torah and holiness of Rabbi Haim Pinto, may his merit protect us.
The Sages have taught, “The tzaddikim are greater in death than they are in life.”
In the eulogy that our teacher Rabbi David Hanania Pinto Shlita gave for the gaon Rabbi Shalom Messas Zatzal, he recounted the following story:
A few years ago during Pesach, I was in Morocco with my entire family, and we stayed with Mr. Yehoshua Dahan. During Chol HaMoed, I received a telephone call from France. It was from a great Rav, a tzaddik and friend of the Pinto family, the gaon Rabbi Shalom Messas, the Av Beit Din of Jerusalem. He urgently wanted to speak to me. I took the telephone and began by greeting him. The Rav told me that he wanted a blessing for his wife, for doctors had discovered that she was gravely ill, and she was scheduled for surgery on the following day.
I immediately expressed my great surprise to the Rav: “I’m insignificant, but you’re a great Rav! Who am I to give you a blessing?”
However Rav Messas replied, “I am who I am, but you have the great merit of your ancestors. We all know who Rabbi Haim Pinto was. That’s why I want you to awaken Heaven’s compassion for my wife. We believe in the merit of Rabbi Haim Pinto and in the merit of your holy ancestors, which is why I’m asking you to invoke this merit and to pray for the complete healing of my wife.”
I simply replied, “Since the Rav is older than me, and he has nevertheless negated himself before me, this indicates that he is much greater than me. Because the Rav is addressing someone who is insignificant, Hashem will provide his wife with an immediate healing.”
Afterwards, Rabbi Yehoshua told me that he knew that Rav Messas’ wife was ill. However a great miracle occurred. She was operated on the following day, and to the doctors’ great surprise, they found nothing wrong with her! This was despite the fact that prior tests had clearly shown that she was gravely ill. At that point everyone realized that her healing had occurred by the merit of the tzaddik Rabbi Haim Pinto.
In the Footsteps of our Fathers
The Benefits of Mutual Responsibility
This week’s parsha is filled with mitzvot that are incumbent upon the entire Jewish people. A significant portion of the 613 mitzvot are given in Parsha Ki-Teitzei. For the most part, however, not everyone has the opportunity to perform these mitzvot.
Relatively few people are farmers, wine growers, shopkeepers, or landlords. This is where the principle of mutual responsibility comes into play: Each Jew who fulfills such a mitzvah can involve the entire people in it, such that everyone can eventually fulfill all 613 mitzvot.
Such was the case with the Rebbe of Belz, Rabbi Aharon. In everything that he accomplished, he sought the good of the Jewish people. In all the mitzvot that he fulfilled, he thought of conferring merit to his people and protecting them.
Whenever he heard that a person was about to return a lost object to its owner, he would ask that person to include the entire Jewish people in his deed, explaining that it consists of a mitzvah that not everyone has the opportunity to perform. In fact if a person does not find a lost object, he has no opportunity to return it to its owner, and therefore he can never fulfill this mitzvah.
A Glass that Doesn’t Break
During a visit of the tzaddik Rabbi Aryeh Lewin to a retirement home in Jerusalem, one resident gave the Rav a 10 Lira bill to mail to his daughter in Russia. In the year 5695, when this story took place, that was an enormous amount of money, capable of paying for the needs of an entire family for two complete months. The Rav therefore traveled to the post office with the pill in his pocket.
On the way there, however, he was stunned to discover a hole in his pocket – and the bill missing! Desperate and depressed, he returned home and told his wife what had happened. He then added, “This week we told ourselves that we urgently needed to purchase shoes for the children. Not only don’t we have the money for it, but now we’re also burdened by this heavy debt!”
His pious wife calmly responded, “A glass sometimes falls but doesn’t break.” Filled with bitterness, Rabbi Aryeh went to see his teacher, the gaon Rabbi Isser Zalman Meltzer, who advised him to place a notice in the Doar Hayom newspaper asking for anyone who finds this money to return it to Rabbi Aryeh (despite the small likelihood of this happening).
Rabbi Isser Zalman then blessed him, wishing that he find the money without any harm coming to him. Rabbi Aryeh followed his teacher’s advice, but before arriving at the newspaper’s offices, he borrowed some money from a gemach [free loan fund] so he could send it to the resident’s daughter in Russia.
Having barely arrived at the newspaper’s offices, he was told that a Jew had already come to advise them that he had found a 10 Lira bill! He even left his address in case the owner wanted to publish a notice in the newspaper to recover it.
Filled with emotion, the Rav rushed to see the man in question.
It was a young man, the father of a family, who had found this small fortune in the street, in a place where several non-Jews had been working on that day. It was a true miracle that the money ended up in the hands of a Jew who was upright and honest!
Obligated to Return It
Rabbi Yerachmiel Bauer, who served as the mayor of Bnei Brak, recounted the following story: “One day I lost my wallet in Tel Aviv. It contained a large amount of money that belonged to the community, and all my efforts to find it proved useless.
“Then one day I received a telephone call from a man I didn’t know, a resident of Tel Aviv. He told me that he had found my wallet, and that I could pick it up at his home.
“When I arrived, I realized that this honest person was a non-observant Jew, a man who didn’t respect Torah or mitzvot. I was stunned: Why had he decided to return such a large amount? How could he resist the lure of easy money?
“That’s when he explained things to me: ‘When I found your wallet and saw that it contained a large amount of money, I immediately decided to keep everything for myself. I later opened it again and saw a photograph of a rabbi inside.
“ ‘As I looked at the photograph, I felt that I couldn’t keep it. I realized that I had to return it to its owner.
“ ‘I don’t know what made me do it, but when I looked at the photograph, a voice screamed out within me: You must return this money!’ ”
Rabbi Yerachmiel ended his account by explaining who appeared in the photograph: It was the mashgiach Rabbi Yechezkel Lewinstein Zatzal.