Tuesday, July 29, 2008

On Reuven and Gad from Doresh L'Tzion

The following is a translation of chapter 7 of HaMagid Doresh Tzion, part of the book Doresh L'Tzion, which is part of the set Torat HaGeulah.

One that Refrains from Helping the Mitzvah of Yishuv HaAretz is Considered as Among a Culture of Sinners

In parshat Matot, the request of B'nei Gad and Reuven to Moshe Rabbeinu is told, that he (Moshe) would give to them land for an inheritance on the eastern side of the Jordan. Moshe replies to them "Why would you turn away the heart of B'nei Yisrael from crossing to the land which Hashem gave them?", and in the rest of his words, he compares them to the spies that turned away the heart of B'nei Yisrael in to not coming to the land which Hashem gave them, and calls them a culture of sinners.

From Moshe's harsh answer to B'nei Gad and B'nei Reuven, we have much to learn for our times, for did B'nei Gad and B'nei Reuvent say anything bad about Eretz Yisrael? And it is only because they requested to settle on the eastern side of the Jordan that he called them "turners away of the heart of B'nei Yisrael from crossing the Jordan", and compares them to the Spies, and calls them a culture of sinners, and they replied "we will be armed and ready to go before B'nei Yisrael ... " and only on that condition did Moshe Rabbeinu acquiesce.

From here we learn 2 important ideas:

  1. Everyone that refrains from joining in Kibbutz Galuyot, and even though he doesn't harm the mitzvah at all is thought of as one that prevents the hearts of others from B'nei Yisrael from fulfilling this great mitzvah, and he is thought of as sinning the Sin of the Spies, and a helper of a culture of sinners.
  2. Anyone that helps Kibbutz Galuyot and Yishuv Eretz Yisrael with dedication brings a Tikkun against the Sin of the Spies, like the answer of B'nei Gad and B'nei Reuvent "we will be armed and ready to go before B'nei Yisrael".

And why all this? Because the Mitzvah of Yishuv Ha'Aretz is equal to all the other mitzvot in the Torah as brought in the Sifri on the verse "And you shall inherit it and settle in it" (Devarim 11). And thus is the ruling for the mitzvah of building Yerushalayim, for Kibbutz Galuyot and the building of Yerushalayim are connected according to the verse "Hashem builds Yerushalayim, the dispersed of Yisrael he will gather" (Tehillim 147).


  1. Why is Gad mentioned before Ruevan?
    Shevet Gad had a mysterious reason for wanting eiver hayardein as the Targum Unkeles says “Vayar Reishis Lo, Ke shum M’chelhas M’chokek Sufun= cause Moshe Rabeinu is buried there (Bamidbar 32, 3 & Devarim 33,21) targum yonatan adds “just like in this world Moses led, so too in the world to come etc.) [it may also be??? That the actual land of Gad is part of Edom Amon & Moav also known as Keni Knizi Kadmoni (Rash”i Bereishis 15,19)which is even a deeper & more mystical L’usid part of Israel, perhaps this is what the Yonatan ben Uziel is alluding to, where as shevet Menashe is much higher North-East of the Jordan & not associated with this idea???]

    Ruevan is perhaps more in between, therefore mentioned second.

    Why isn’t chatzi shevet Menashe mentioned with bnei Gad & Ruevain request? & Generally why do we see a Shevet (Menashe) split? Not just a simple split (two sides of the Jordan) but rather one half of the Shevet (Menashe) is giving it all up, & the other half is not even willing to risk an individual plot to ever wind up to a different shevet (U’megoral Nachlasainu Yegara’h (bamidbar36,3)
    Personally I would have thought that they are a bit extremely obsessive, perhaps it’s a natural reaction to counteract what their not so observant brothers have gave up?
    Not so G-D himself declares: “Kain Mateh B’nei Yosef Dovrim” this leaves me a bit confused, compounded by the fact that this is the last portion in the Torah (figuratively) since Devarim is Mishna (repeat). There must be something especially special with this half of Menashe that is basically the Punch line of the entire Torah!
    Notice also in this Parsha (Massai) the boundaries of Eretz Yisroal, which seems to be a run-way into Sefer Yehoshua, [Tractate Nedarim 22B, had the Jewish people not sinned, they would have only received the five books of Moses & sefer Yehoshua alone, mipnei sh’erchu shel E”Y hu.

    Have you ever seen someone learning sefer Yehoshua ( Perek after perek filled with names of border cities,) with a bren (fire- enthusiasm )?

    First let’s address a number of questions:

    Gemara (Soteh 14A) asks why did Moses want to so badly to come into Israel, Did he want to eat fruits. (As if it’s no big deal) This seems to be quit puzzling, there are so many indications to the affect of the centrality of the produce of the land (example Jeremia 2, 7 “I brought you into the land to eat its fruit, also Ish tachas Gafno V’Taanuso, also Eretz Chita etc? Furthermore the Bracha we make on the Mitzva of Yishuv H’Aretz is only after eating food? Also see Shir Hashirim Raba 5,5) the motivation of Daniel & Crew to return to E”Y after Galut they said “Mutav Shenochel Suedas Eretz Yiroel, U’nevurech Al E”Y”

    Gemara in Brachot 21A) wants to learn Bracha Rishona by Mazon with a Kal Vachomer from Torah, only to be disproved with the argument that Torah is Chayei Olam, how do we understand the Hava amena?

    Certainly the term “eating” is a code word for the Mitzva of Yeshuv H’aretz, (as indicated above) all Mitzva’s are considered Chayei Shuh as we find the gemara considers Tefilah (Praying) Chayei Shuh, only Torah is considered Chayei Olam [of course all mitzvah’s bring a person to eternal life, yet the actuall mitzvah is an aspect of temporary, whereas Torah besides bringing to all eternity, is in of itself eternal (Olum)
    (proof : tractate shabat 33b the first time Rashb”i leaves his cave he says Manichim Chayei Olum V’oskim B’chyei shuh, the 2nd time he says Kama Chavivm Mitzvos Al Yisrael.

    Now we understand the Hava amina kal v’chomer for Bracha rishona for food aka Mitzvah of yishuv E”Y (since food is more concrete before eaten, whereas studying torah is more concrete afterwards)

    Yehoshua composed
    A: his Sefer B: birchas Ha’AretzC: Uleinu L’Shabeach (all are intimately connected to mitzvah Yishuv H’aretz (since ajew in Chu”l is Ovdei A”Z btahara, Kielu oved A”Z, & Goyim in Chu’ll is just minhug avosahem, but in Israel the Goyim are truly Ovdei A”Z)

    Moshe composed A: his SeferB: parshat BilaamC: Iyov (not dependent on E”Y)

    The face of Moses like the sun & Yehoshua like the moon, woe to that shame
    This is the difference of Chayei Olum & Chayei Shah

    Only by Moses do we find the concept of not eating (40 days), Kach he darka shel Torah (pirkei avos) before one prays for Torah to enter one’s body, first pray that sweets not enter (Tosfos ketsuvos 104a)
    Not so by Yehoshua, who is dealing with chayei shah, which is davka dependent on food (mitvahs)

    This may answer another puzzle:
    Rash”i wonders why the Torah spec’s the border of E”Y? Because a lot of mitzvah’s can only be done within those boarders.
    But according to the Ramba”n b’shem Chazal (which Rash”I himself brings elsewhere) you cannot really (Tachlis hamitzva) do any mitvoh’s Toras elokei haretz out side of E”Y , so why does rashi only say many mitvohs, also if the Torah gave the boarders what’s the purpose of sefer Yehoshua?
    It seems the Hagdara betw. The Gevulot in the Torah & in Yehoshua are the same difference betw Chayei Olum & Shah.
    In Maasei the main objective is limud hatorah it’s not so much for the Mitzvos so rashi doesn’t stress “All the mitzvohs”, rather we are learning the borders of E”Y in the context of Chayei Olum limud hatorah

    This is what the Gemara asks did Moses want the fruits of E”Y to be duvuk in Chayei Shah, which is the geder of the mitzvah of E”Y & all mitzvah (like Tefillah when one is totally engrossed in Tefilah it’s nevertheless only considered Chayei Shah.)

    G-D promises Abraham after the Akeida “V’yirash Zaracha es Shar Ovuv” referring to Canaan. Where do we find that they are our enemies other than that we want their land?
    The list of our enemies are long, Amalek, midyon etc. from all of them why consider canaan our classical enemy?
    There is no bigger enemy than one who does & uses our very job for the opposite. Chazal say they called Chorei cause they smelled the land etc, Chivi cause they tasted the land etc. They where extremely connected with the land, which is our Tafkid but they misuse it for opposite goals.
    Y’horashtem es Yoshvei Ha’aretz mipneichem, simply this means to inherit the land, but the Isbitzer (Mei Hashola’ach volume 2 Massei) explains: to inherit their Yeshuv Ha’aretz their connection to the land, by them it was coated in the profane, & we supposed to uplift it & incorporate it in holiness.

    True there’s bnei Gad who recognize & held on tight to the Greatness of Moshe (Olum) as per Targum Yonatan ben Uzeel)

    Nevertheless the Torah ends off with Bnei Yoseh who go wild over the Mitzva (B’geder chayei Shah) of E”Y

    Certainly let’s not fall as what happened to Rueven, & especially half of Menasheh-east, who seemingly misused & underestimated our job (chayei shah)

    let’s be inspired by the other half of Menashe who has an Haskama of G-D as the punch line at the very end of the Torah to carry us through sefer Yehoshua.

    next time I'll try to keep it breif Bl"n

  2. Yashar Koach.

    Regarding the other post, see the Ramchal. If you have the green set i believe it is Otzrot Ramchal (which has short drashot on the parshiot). Somewhat similar take on the the nesi'im.

  3. I see in the Pirush ramchal al Hatorah (on torah cd rom)the ten nesiyim are the ten chasadim which shine in the ten sefirot of malchus.
    [are you referring to the green set from R'chaim freidlander too bad most of my volumes are still in NY]

  4. Correct on both counts, you quoted the same thing, and yes from Rav Friedlander.

    What CD are you using?

  5. DBS it's called not as fancy as bar-ilan, but good enough for me

  6. Impressive list of sefarim there. How is the textual quality? I remember reading somewhere that one of these sets had a lot of spelling errors.

  7. Perhaps you can help me brainstorm. On my post on Daniel 12, I reference the GR"A to Tikkunei Zohar. He says in is hagahot (not his peirush) that it is known that the Tamid wasn't brought from 18 years before churban. Then in parenthesis it mentions what seems to be a sefer name, which is rashei teivot of kaf mem. Any ideas?

  8. you can control the size & fonts, this makes it fairly comfortable, I may have once spotted a spelling mistake a long while ago, but I'm no expert proof reader,

    please refer me to the exact post out of the 8 posts of Daniel, or if you can fill me in the exact few words before & after K"M, i'll certainly give it a try.

  9. I just was showed the Netziv in Hemak Duver in this weeks portion (Devurim 3,16) which would make my first post alot shorter. basically he says based on Yerushalmi Bikurim (1,8)that menashe-east did not request it, rather they were given it. netziv explains that Moshe wanted B'nei Torah to keep Gad & Rueven in shape.

    Therefore I'm falling off with my critique on Menashe instead I must say that menashe-east represents Chayei Olum & menashe west represents chayei Shuh

  10. http://keitzmeguleh.blogspot.com/2008/03/happy-is-he-who-waits.html

    הגהות הגר"א - ט"ס בכאן דמקודם צ"ל ואית דמוסיף ב' דהוא ע"ב ואח"כ ואית דחשיב משבוטל התמיד - דבאמת ח"י שנים קודם החורבן בטל התמיד כידוע (כ"מ בהע"א)

  11. could it be the printer is saying "Kach Matzasi B..."
    that this specific comment(Haguhu) was found in...
    or the Gaon himself is saying he found it in...
    Hate to bring up this topic again.... BUT
    In a certain sence thanks to the dome of the rock (abomination) we can with certainty be Makayem Mitzva #20 & along with that many other mitzvos in it's wake. Radvaz Paskins exact dimentions,which is also refered as a given by none other than the Bach (ohr hachaim 561), Chasam Sofer (yoreh deah 236) Chafetz Chaim (likutei halachos zevachim 55b)and others

  12. On the first note: הע"א doesn't really mean much to me, assuming the bet means "in".

    It is not so pashut to call it archaeological fact that the Dome of the Rock houses Even HaShetiyah, and halachic opinions cannot alter archaeological realities.

  13. what I meant to say is that perhaps the madfis is writing "kach Matzasi B'ha'urah acheret or acharona"

    can you expound on your 2nd comment,
    I'm simply saying that you have a psak on exact locations one may enter based on tradition (m'sorah) which is excepted by all. (Radva"z lived in Jerusalem about 700 hundred years ago, giving a psak (not someone living in a different country writing thearetics) & he has a tradition about a building that was built only 600 hundred years before him. (no archealogy necesary :)

  14. It's a mishnah meforeshet: On Tishah b'Av the city (Yerushalayim) was plowed. Who can really say anything for sure without some serious on the ground studying, even back then?

  15. churban bais Rishon not Sheni

  16. The Romans did it, not the Bavlim. Where in Tanach do you find this?

  17. mishna Taanit 4,6) V'nechrisha H'ir based on the Pasik "tziyon sadeh t'choresh" (Micha 3, 12 also referenced in Jeremia 26,18)

    perhaps you remember the following pasuk(tehilim 137) even though it says remember the children of edom who said uproot uproot, in actuality they were talking to the babylonians (Metzudas Duvid)

    It's the Bavli'im who totally destroyed without leaving a trace, so much so that shlosha Nevi'im ulu m'bavel, echad (niba) al m'kom ha'misbeach

    the proof lies in in Eicha Raba (1,31)Guzru min shamayim d'lo yechrav l'olum (kotel maaruvi)davka in bais sheni, not in rishon.
    this in itself should proov to you that it wasn't totally plowed.

    but either way I'm surprised that you disregard a psak of the radvaz, who certainly knew a thing or two, or at least try to work with him, we talking about one of the biggest poskin that we heavily rely on for psak in all area's of the Torah

    David Hamelech says it best:(tehilim 84,3&4) with complete yearning my soul goes out for the Makom Hamikdash, Gam tzipor mutzuh bayis etc es Mizbichosechu hashem rashi explains that this refers during galut. see "Even ezra" this alludes to knowing the place of the mizbeach.

  18. Don't confuse the nevuah with the fulfillment. See the Yerushalmi on that mishnah.

    חרש רופוס שחיק עצמות את ההיכל

    Regarding the rest, feel free to email me if you want to go in to it further.

  19. I was aware of the Yerushalmi from the start, notice he writes "Heichal" specifically (not the surrounding area),
    I'm still looking if an actual posuk exists that it happend

    it's very clear from many sources that the Tana'im went to the exact Makom many years after the churban.

  20. The Yerushalami is making a hekesh between נחרשה העיר and רופוס. Regarding the history of Har HaBayit, notice that gap between those two periods, what happened: Jewish presence became assur in the city, and the Christians used it as a trash dump.

    Regardless, it is more complicated. There are reasons that very kosher Jews don't hold that this is the exact site.

    Don't become confused. If you go up to Har HaBayit, it is halachah that dictates where you are allowed to go and where you are not, up to the point when you have evidence that halachah is incorrect on this matter (much like a yachid is not allowed to follow the psak of the Sanhedrin if he has data that they don't have). That works for now. But when we will build the Beit HaMikdash again, we will have to check that spot, check other places, and come to a conclusion without bias for prior opinions, because we are talking about a physical matter.