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Rosh Chodesh Cheshvan 5774/October 5, 2013
Yeshiva University Torah miTzion Beit Midrash Zichron DovYeshiva University Torah miTzion Beit Midrash Zichron DovYeshiva University Torah miTzion Beit Midrash Zichron Dov
Toronto TorahToronto TorahToronto Torah
 
Parshat Noach
 
Vol. 5 Num. 4
 
סב
cedar trees to use as wood for the ark.When people inquired why he wasplanting cedar trees, he explained thatG-d was going to punish the world andbring a flood to destroy it. When peopleasked him why he was watering thecedar trees he offered a similarresponse. The same pattern occurredwhen Noach started building the ark.G-d wanted Noach to carry out his workin as public a forum as possible, inorder that everyone would learn aboutthe impending flood and repentimmediately.Even once the rain started to fall, G-dwanted to give the people anotherchance to repent. Rashi notes that first
the Torah says, “And it
rained 
upon the
land for forty days,” (Bereishit 7:12) andthen later the Torah says, “And there
was a
 flood 
upon the land for forty 
days.” (Bereishit 7:17) He learns from
this discrepancy that the rains startedto fall lightly, so that if the people wereto repent the rain would simply havebeen a blessing. Then, when they didnot repent, the rain became a flood.Despite the evil ways of the generation,G-d gave them numerous chances torepent, even up until the last minute,before ultimately destroying them. Turning to our first question, the floodwas indeed meant to bring totaldestruction upon the earth. Radak(6:13) explains that the flood returned
the world to a state of “
tohu vavohu 
”,
(Bereishit 1:2) utter nothingness, like itwas before Creation. In order to startfresh, it was important to leave over noremnants, or as little as possible, fromthe previous world.As Rambam (Hilchot Teshuvah 2:4)notes, part of the process of repentanceis to change your name and yourhometown, because in order to becomea new person, we must leave behind ourold lives. Similarly, in order for mankindto have a fresh start, it was necessary toleave behind anything associated withthe violence, immorality and corruptionof the old world. Rabbi Soloveitchik (OnRepentance p. 251) notes that this isprecisely the reason Avraham was giventhe command to leave his land,birthplace and family. In order to fully embrace G-
d’s word and begin a life of 
monotheism, it was necessary for him tobreak off from his sinful surroundings.
So too, since the corruption of Noach’s
generation permeated every aspect of life, it was necessary for everything tobe destroyed.With the month of Elul and Yom Kippur just behind us, the story of the floodreminds us of two crucial lessonsregarding the performance of 
teshuvah 
.First, we can never stray too far, nor isit ever too late, to begin the
teshuvah 
 process. Second, in order to properly repent it is important to disassociatefrom all aspects of the sin, to ensure afresh and positive new beginning. May these lessons serve as a model andguide for our teshuvah throughout the year.
 jgutenberg@torontotorah.com 
It’s Never Too Late for a Fresh Start
 
 Josh Gutenberg
 
This issue of Toronto Torah is sponsored in memory of 
Miriam bat Yosef Leib z”l and Yehuda ben Yoel HaKohen z”l
 
After Adam and Chavah are banishedfrom Gan Eden, humanity begins asteady decline in morality. Kayin kills
his brother Hevel, after Hevel’s
sacrifice to G-
d is accepted and Kayin’s
sacrifice is rejected. Powerful menforcibly marry any woman they desire,and Rashi (Bereishit 6:2) points outthat that even includes marriedwomen. The deterioration of morality continues to the point that all
thoughts passing through man’s head
are evil and G-d regrets havingcreating mankind. (Bereishit 6:5-6) Anall-time low is reached in ParshatNoach, when G-d declares that theworld is "full of corruption andviolence". (Bereishit 6:13) G-d declaresthe world can no longer continue toexist, and He instructs Noach to buildan ark in which he, his family andanimals from every species will remainwhile a flood destroys the world. This Divine decision requiresexplanation, though. Why is itnecessary to bring a flood and destroy the entire world? If Man engaged insuch corruption, why didn't G-d bringa plague that killed only humanbeings? Furthermore, some of thecommentators are bothered by the way G-d required Noach to exert so muchenergy in building an ark. Certainly,G-d could have saved Noach in adifferent manner!Regarding our second question, G-
d’s
decision to have Noach build an arkgave everyone the opportunity torepent. A midrash (Tanchuma Noach5) explains that Noach wascommanded to build the ark 120 yearsbefore the rains started to fall. In fact,G-d instructed Noach to first plant
We are grateful toContinental Press 905-660-0311
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Visit us at www.torontotorah.com
 
mouths of adults. Also… the entire nation gathers in
synagogues and study halls to hear the message of the text,and the leaders will guide them and teach them wisdom."One might be surprised at the need for a command to rest,in addition to the prohibition against performing melachah. To explain this, Ramban (Vayikra 23:24) wrote, "We arebiblically instructed to rest on Yom Tov even from actionsthat do not involve melachah. We should not strain all day in measuring grain, weighing produce and gifts, fillingbarrels with wine, and moving implements and even stones
from one house to another… the market would be filled with
all manner of commerce, and the store would be open andthe owner would keep a tab and the moneychangers wouldbe at their tables with the gold coins before them, and theworkers would rise early for work and would hirethemselves out as on weekdays for these and similar
tasks… Thus the Torah declared ‘Shabbaton,’ a day of 
ceasing and rest, not a day of strain."
torczyner@torontotorah.com 
2
 The first day of Pesach [the first two outside of Israel], andthe seventh day of Pesach [the seventh and eighth outside of Israel], are treated as Shabbat-like days, when a Jew is notallowed to engage in melachah [creative tasks which mirrorthose practiced in building the mishkan]. This is stressed inthe Torah with a command to rest (#297 for the first day,#300 for the seventh day), as well as a prohibition againstengaging in melachah (#298 for the first day, #301 for theseventh day).As the Sefer haChinuch pointed out, halting our melachahbrings great benefit: "So that Israel will remember the greatmiracles G-d performed for them and for their ancestors, andwill speak of them and inform their children andgrandchildren of them, for as a result of their cessation of worldly involvement they will be free to involve themselveswith this. If they were permitted to engage in melachah, evenlight melachah, then each person would turn to hisinvolvements, and the honour of the holiday would beforgotten from the mouths of children, and even from the
Haftorah: Yeshayah 54:1-55:5
Rabbi Mordechai Torczyner
 
Who is the prophet of our haftorah?
Yeshayah (Isaiah) was a prophet in theperiod leading up to the exile of the tennorthern tribes of Yisrael by theAssyrians. He lived in the southernkingdom of Yehudah, and heprophesied during the reigns of KingsUziahu, Yotam, Achaz and Chizkiyahu.According to the Talmud (Sotah 10a),he was a descendant of Yehudah and Tamar.As the Talmud (Bava Batra 15a) informsus, the book of Yeshayah was compiledby King Chizkiyahu and associates of his. The prophecies of Yeshayah may beclassified in two categories, Rebuke andRedemption; the former dominates theearly chapters of the book, while thelatter occupies the latter portion. Thesplit is not clean, though; portions of the former include redemption, andportions of the latter include rebuke.
What is the message of our haftorah?
 This haftorah is actually read twiceduring the year; it is the haftorah forParshat Noach, but it is also thehaftorah for Parshat Ki Tetze, as part of the series of seven haftarot of consolation following Tishah b'Av. The prophet envisions the Jewishpeople as a childless woman and adistressed pauper; the former reflectsloss of our physical future due to theassaults of the enemy, and the latterreflects loss of hope due to our greatsuffering. Yeshayah tells the childlesswoman to expand her tent, for she willproduce children who will spread farand wide. To the distressed pauper,Yeshayah promises glorious wealthand children of piety and peace.Yeshayah also makes demands uponthe Jewish nation. To earn this exaltedfuture, we must practice righteousnessand distance ourselves fromcorruption. When we are thirsty, weshould seek the water of Torah; whenwe lack silver for bread, we shouldpursue Divine wisdom. This will be thepath by which we earn Divinesplendour.
What is the connection between ourhaftorah and the parshah?
Yeshayah cites a Divine promise toprotect the Jewish people following thedestruction which will come at thehands of the Babylonians. Yeshayahcompares this Divine pledge to the oneprovided after the flood described inour parshah: "As I have sworn not tobring the waters of Noach again, so Ihave sworn not to become angry at youand not to rebuke you." (54:9)A careful look at our parshah reveals adifference between these two oaths,though. The oath to Noah is not givenfreely; only after Noach brings akorban, demonstrating generosity andreversing the selfish violence whichhad triggered the flood, does G-dpromise not to flood the world again.In our case, G-d offers the promiseeven before we demonstrate ourrehabilitation
 – 
indeed, even beforeNevuchadnezzar demolishes the BeithaMikdash!
 – 
knowing that we arecapable of meeting Divineexpectations.
A lesson in faith
In the Talmud (Sanhedrin 100a), RabbiYochanan elaborates upon Yeshayah'spromise of future wealth. A studentmocks Rabbi Yochanan's prediction of gargantuan gems adorning the gates of  Jerusalem, until he goes to sea anddiscovers angels carving just suchgems. Upon returning home, thestudent acknowledges the veracity of Rabbi Yochanan's lesson, but thisstudent's need for visual proof is aninsult to his mentor. As the Talmudreports it, Rabbi Yochanan turns hiseyes to the student, and the studentbecomes a "pile of bones".Rabbeinu Nisim of Gerona, a greatfourteenth century Spanish sage, sawin this story a lesson regarding the roleof our sages. We understand thatscholars are invested with authority over our legal system, if only toprevent chaos. Regarding such non-legal matters as eschatologicalpredictions, though, we might thinkourselves free to make our ownexegetical way. This talmudic accountseems to say otherwise; one whomocks the words of the sages, even onthese matters, does so at his own peril.
torczyner@torontotorah.com 
613 Mitzvot: #297-298, 300-301
 
Resting on Pesach
 
Rabbi Mordechai Torczyner
 
"These are the generations of Noah.Noah was a righteous man, flawless inhis generations." (Bereishit 6:9). Weneed to investigate, for here it is written"righteous, flawless (tzadik tamim)" andlater (Bereishit 7:1) it is written, "for I[G-d] have seen that you are righteousbefore Me," but "flawless" (tamim) is not
written… The word "tamim" was
intentionally placed in the first verse,and it did not belong later.For there are two types of tzadikim. Onelevel of righteousness is when a personconstantly carries himself flawlessly,with Torah, prayer and good deeds, butdoes not know how to delve intowisdom, i.e. knowledge of G-d. Rather,he walks simply in his learning andprayer. This tzadik cannot connect withother individuals at all, thinking thatothers will distract from his service of G-d. Additionally, he does not have theintellectual capacity to bring otherscloser to service of G-d, as his ownintellect in his service of G-d is minute,and he walks only with innocence, inisolation, without any friends. There is also a level of tzadik who walks[before G-d] with wisdom, adhering toG-d, to fulfill the verse (Proverbs 3:6),"In all your ways know Him," asexplained by our Sages. This tzadik canattach himself to many others, as hiswalk [before G-d] happens in holinessand with wisdom, with great closenessto G-d. Even though he joins withothers, they do not distract histhoughts, for he is connected with thehighest wisdom and yearning for theCreator. This tzadik is not called"flawless", as he functions with cleverwisdom against the evil inclination, to
bring those who are distant close….
  This is the explanation of these verses:before the building of the ark, Noah wasflawless, as he did not know how to be clever, walking with innocence, and he didnot connect with the people of his generation to bring them closer to the service of G-d. He walked alone, and so the verse calls him flawless, as he did not know howto be clever, meaning to bring them closer to wisdom. However, when G-d toldNoach, "Make for yourself an ark", and he was busy building for 120 years, G-d'sintent was that others would ask what he was doing and he would respond that G-
d wants to bring a flood to the world, and perhaps they would repent… A righteousperson who must deal with wicked people needs great wisdom and can’t walk with
temimut. Rather, he must become wise, so that wicked people do not distract himfrom his service, as Yaakov was in his dealings with Esav and Lavan. Therefore,after building the ark the verse says, "for I [G-d] have seen that you are righteousbefore Me", and "flawless" is not written, for Noah had chosen to walk withwisdom, and he had attained a level higher than the level of flawlessness.
Torah and Translation
Was Noach “Tamim”?
 Rabbi Kalonymus Kalman Epstein
Maor vaShamesh, Parshat Noach
Translated by Adam Frieberg
Biography
Rabbi Kalonymus Epstein
Adam Frieberg
 
Visit us at www.torontotorah.com
 3
Rabbi Kalonymos Kalman haLevi Epsteinwas born in Cracow in 1751. His mainteacher was Rebbe Elimelech of Lizhensk. Rabbi Elimelech was thementor of many, including theChozeh(Seer) of Lublin,theMaggid of Koznitzand RabbiMenachem Mendel of Rimanov;Rabbi Kalonymos Kalman washis youngest, and yet most esteemed,student. He became so great that on onetrip to Lizhensk to visit his mentor,Rebbe Elimelech removed his "atarah" inthe presence of all of his students and
placed it on Rabbi Kalonymos Kalman’s
shoulders, asking that he assume theposition of leader of Lizhensk. RabbiKalonymous Kalman declined, as he didnot feel worthy to replace his own rebbe.Instead, he remained in Cracow, the city where Rebbe Elimelch had sent him years earlier.Rabbi Epstein gained great fame in
Cracow, but dealings weren’t always easy 
for him. Upon his arrival in Cracow, hewas met with great opposition, but overtime he won their respect and they recognized his greatness.Although he would become famous,Rabbi Kalonymous Kalman came from avery simple family. His family was sopoor that he spent his early childhoodselling bagels that his parents baked athome, and while he spent his eveningslistening to sermons that were deliveredin the local Beit Midrash. After one suchsermon, a very wealthy Jew, RabbiGutgold, asked, in jest, for youngKalonymous Kalman to repeat thesermon. After his masterful repetition,Rabbi Gutgold promised to support himin full-time Torah study, if his father
would let him marry Rabbi Gutgold’s
daughter when he turned thirteen.Kalonymus Kalman's father agreed, andthey were wed as soon as he reached theage of bar mitzvah. Toward the end of his life, RabbiKalonymus Kalman instructed his youngest son to gather together all of hiswritings and sermons. These were later
published as the book ‘MaorVashemesh’. Rabbi Kalonymous Kalman
became known by the title of thisposthumously published work. Theteaching of this work are so profoundand insightful that it has been referredto as Shulchan Aruch of Chassidut.Rabbi Kalonymous Kalman died in 1825at the age of 72.
afrieberg@torontotorah.com  
ויתרדב
 
היה
 
םימת
 
קידצ
 
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חנ
 
חנ
 
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הלאוגו
'.
דקדל
 
שי
,
ביתכ
 
ןאכד
'
םימת
 
קידצ
,'
ןלהלו
(
א
 
ז
ינפל
 
קידצ
 
יתיאר
 
ךתא
 
יכ
 
ביתכ
,
בתכנ
 
אלו
'
םימת
'...
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'
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'
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ךרצוה
.
 
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ינימ
 
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שי
 
יכ
.
ונייה
,
לש
 
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-
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,
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ומש
 
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,
ךלוה
 
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ודומלב
 
תוטשפב
.
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,
לוכי
 
וניא
 
ללכו
 
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םדא
 
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םע
 
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,
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.
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תודדובתהב
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, 
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והעד
 
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ל
.
קידצה
 
הזו
,
ינב
 
המכ
 
םע
 
ומצע
 
תא
 
רבחתהל
 
לכוי
 
םדא
,
המכחבו
 
השודקב
 
וכוליהש
 
תמחמ
 
לודג
 
תוקיבדב
,
םע
 
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תא
 
רבחתמש
 
םגהו
 
םישנא
-
ותבשחמ
 
םילבלבמ
 
םניא
,
רושק
 
אוה
 
יכ
 
ומש
 
ךרבתי
 
ארובב
 
תוקיבדו
 
האליע
 
המכחב
.
הזו
 
ארקנ
 
וניא
 
קידצה
'
םימת
,'
תומכחתהב
 
ךלוה
 
יכערה
 
רציה
 
דגנ
,
יקוחר
 
ברקל
.
 
םיבותכה
 
שוריפ
 
הזו
,
היה
 
הביתה
 
ןינב
 
םדוק
 
יכ
 
תניחבב
'
םימת
,'
תומרל
 
עדוי
 
וניאש
.
ונייהד
 
תומימתב
 
ךלהש
,
ורוד
 
ינבל
 
ומצע
 
רבח
 
אלו
 
ומש
 
ךרבתי
 
ותדובעל
 
םברקל
,
תודדובתהב
 
ךלהו
 
ומצע
 
ינפב
,
ארקנ
 
ןכ
 
לע
'
םימת
'
עדוי
 
וניאש
 
תומרל
-
המכחל
 
םברקל
.
רמאש
 
ךכ
 
רחא
 
םנמאבקה
 
ול
"
ה
'
תבית
 
ךל
 
השע
'
וגו
,'
ןינבב
 
קסוע
 
היהו
 
ק
 
הביתה
"
םינש
 
כ
,
ישה
 
תנווכו
"
התיה
 
ת
,
ידכ
 
תאז
 
המ
 
ורוד
 
ינב
 
ולאשיש
,
בקהש
 
םהל
 
בישיו
"
ה
 
הבושת
 
ושעי
 
ילוא
 
םלועל
 
לובמ
 
איבהל
 
הצורשרב
 
ראובמכ
"
י
 (
י
 
ו
 
תישארב
.) 
אליממ
 
אצמנ
,
לכ
 
קה
"
הביתה
 
ןינבב
 
קסעש
 
הנש
 
כ
-
ךירצ
 
היה
 
הברה
 
םדא
 
ינב
 
םע
 
קוסעל
,
בטומל
 
םריזחי
 
ילוא
, 
םיעשר
 
םדא
 
ינב
 
םע
 
קוסעל
 
ךירצש
 
קידצו
, 
לודג
 
תומכחתה
 
ךירצ
 
אליממ
,
ךליל
 
לוכי
 
וניאותומימתב
,
םכחתהל
 
ךירצ
 
קר
,
ולבלבי
 
אלש
 
ידכבותדובעמ
 
םיעשרה
 
ותוא
,
ןבלו
 
ושע
 
םע
 
בקעי
 
ומכ
. 
ול
 
רמאנ
 
הביתה
 
ןינב
 
רחא
 
ןכ
 
לע
'
יתיאר
 
ךתוא
 
יכ
 
קידצ
'
רמאנ
 
אלו
'
םימת
,'
ומצעל
 
חנ
 
רחב
 
זא
 
יכ
 
נכ
 
תומכחתהב
 
ךליל
"
ל
,
רתוי
 
הגירדמב
 
הלעותומימתה
 
תגירדממ
,
בהו
.

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