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Caution: Fragile Heart Ahead, Parashat Behar

פרשת בהר תשפ"ד

* Translated by Janine Muller Sherr

A unique topic discussed in this week’s Parasha is the prohibition of causing another person pain with our words.

Rav Lior Engelman writes that this year this is more critical than ever:

“We need to be particularly careful not to hurt a person who is already overwhelmed with grief. For the past eight months, there are so many people walking around in pain—the families of hostages, bereaved families, people displaced from their homes, survivors of the atrocities of October 7th, the wounded and their families, and just the average Israeli citizen with a hole in their heart. These people do not necessarily stand out and may appear completely ׳normal׳.

I don’t really know the man who is holding me up in line, or the driver of the car who just cut me off. I don’t know what’s in the heart of the person who just made an inappropriate remark.

Anything I say is potentially volatile, so I need to make sure that I choose my words carefully. I need to be especially vigilant not to cause another person pain, even inadvertently.  For I will never know which wounded soul I’m stabbing with my words.״

May we merit using our power of speech to give only strength and encouragement to the people around us.

Shabbat Shalom.



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