This D’var Torah should be a Zechus L’Ilui Nishmas my sister, Kayla Rus Bas Bunim Tuvia A”H, my maternal grandfather Dovid Tzvi Ben Yosef Yochanan A”H, my maternal grandfather Dovid Tzvi Ben Yosef Yochanan A”H, my paternal grandfather Moshe Ben Yosef A”H, my uncle Reuven Nachum Ben Moshe & my great aunt Rivkah Sorah Bas Zev Yehuda HaKohein.
It should also be in Zechus L’Refuah Shileimah for:
-My father Bunim Tuvia Ben Channa Freidel
-My grandmothers Channah Freidel Bas Sarah, and Shulamis Bas Etta
-MY BROTHER: MENACHEM MENDEL SHLOMO BEN CHAYA ROCHEL
-Mordechai Shlomo Ben Sarah Tili
-Noam Shmuel Ben Simcha
-Chaya Rochel Ettel Bas Shulamis
-And all of the Cholei Yisrael, especially those suffering from COVID-19 and the Meiron tragedy.
-It should also be a Z’chus for an Aliyah of the holy Neshamos of Dovid Avraham Ben Chiya Kehas—R’ Dovid Winiarz ZT”L, Miriam Liba Bas Aharon—Rebbetzin Weiss A”H, as well as the Neshamos of those whose lives were taken by terrorists (Hashem Yikom Damam), COVID-19, and the Meiron tragedy.
-It should also be a Z’chus for success for Tzaha”l as well as the rest of Am Yisrael, in Eretz Yisrael and in the Galus.
לע”נ שמואל מנחם בן אריה לייב
לע”נ לאה בת אברהם
לע”נ יהודה חסדא יקיר בן הרב שלמה
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Parsha Paradise/פרשה פרדס – Bo: Chameitz on Pesach – Why is THIS Kareis Different from All Other Krisos? ?
שִׁבְעַ֤ת יָמִים֙ מַצּ֣וֹת תֹּאכֵ֔לוּ אַ֚ךְ בַּיּ֣וֹם הָרִאשׁ֔וֹן תַּשְׁבִּ֥יתוּ שְּׂאֹ֖ר מִבָּתֵּיכֶ֑ם כִּ֣י ׀ כׇּל־אֹכֵ֣ל חָמֵ֗ץ וְנִכְרְתָ֞ה הַנֶּ֤פֶשׁ הַהִוא֙ מִיִּשְׂרָאֵ֔ל מִיּ֥וֹם הָרִאשֹׁ֖ן עַד־י֥וֹם הַשְּׁבִעִֽי׃
The Torah states that one who consumes Chameitz on Pesach will be “cut off from Israel” [Shemos 12:15]. This is the source of the Chiyuv Kareis for one who eats Chameitz. But, what exactly does that entail? What actually is Kareis? And is perhaps this Kareis different from other manifestations of Kareis?
To understand Kareis more broadly, we have to return to the earliest reference to Kareis which appears in Parshas Lech Lecha and was to be incurred for any male in Avraham Avinu’s household who was not circumcised [Bereishis 17:14].
There, Rashi and Ibn Ezra cite various traditions from Chazal that Kareis either means premature death (perhaps death before age 52) [Mo’eid Katan 28A] or death without children [Yevamos 55A], each which, in its own way, cuts you off from your people. Ibn Ezra adds that the “Kareis” of the “Nefesh” which the Pasuk describes does not imply a penalty in the Next World, but a bodily penalty, namely untimely death (though others may argue).
Bechor Shor argues that, Al Pi P’shat, Kareis “from one’s people” means that one is separated from the “club” or in-group of Hashem’s loyal servants.
This would explain Kareis in general, however this Kareis for eating Chameitz may entail more.
The Vilna Ga’on observes an anomaly in the Trop (Cantilation) on the word “V’Nichresah”-“And it will be cut off” (recorded in HaMa’or HaGadol). In almost every other occurrence, this word is recited to the tune of a “Sevir” [וְנִכְרְתָ֛ה] (which literally means “breakage”). However, in our verse, the word is vocalized with a “Gershayim” [וְנִכְרְתָ֞ה], which literally means “driving out.” Why is this deviation significant?
The Belzer Rav was once approached by an individual who was seeking guidance after he, out of his negligence, consumed Chameitz on Pesach. As per this observation of the Vilna Ga’on, the Belzer Rav advised him to make Aliyah.
The Vilna Ga’on explained that this minor change in tone is the hint in Scripture for a Midrash Eichah [1:28] which states that the B’nei Yisrael were “driven out” and exiled from Yerushalayim because they had consumed Chameitz on Pesach; “גָּֽלְתָ֨ה יְהוּדָ֤ה מֵעֹנִי֙”-“Yehudah was exiled from affliction” [Eichah 1:3] is understood to mean that the exile occurred because we chose Chameitz in place of the unleavened “Lechem Oni” [Devarim 16:3].
Galus apparently correlates with the consumption of Chameitz. Chameitz represents a choice of Galus. Thus, the only way to reverse the impact of this sin and the doom of exile was to actively leave that Galus and head in the same direction as the B’nei Yisrael who left Mitzrayim.
(Perhaps related, Shadal reminds us that our verse ought to be understood in light of the context we cited earlier Bereishis 17:14, Bris Milah. There, Shadal points out that Kareis for a lack of Bris Milah also includes the punishment of being exiled among other nations, adding that Beis Din would send a person who refused to receive Bris Milah out of Israel.)
But, lest you think that Hashem would simply let one off with a penalty of “exile,” the Midrash states otherwise.
Rashi cites the following forethought in the name of the Mechilta:
Since our Pasuk states that one who eats Chameitz will ve cut off from Yisrael, perhaps that means that the individual might find respite among other nations, indeed, in a state of exile. Therefore, in Sefer Vayikra [22:3], the Torah adds the word “Milfanai,” that the individual would be cut off “from before Me,” i.e. wherever Hashem is, i.e. everywhere. Galus won’t be an escape from Kareis. It will be a byproduct. And perhaps this alluded to in the same Pasuk in Eichah which we cited earlier, which also states, ” וּמֵרֹ֣ב עֲבֹדָ֔ה הִ֚יא יָשְׁבָ֣ה בַגּוֹיִ֔ם לֹ֥א מָצְאָ֖ה מָנ֑וֹחַ כׇּל־רֹדְפֶ֥יהָ הִשִּׂיג֖וּהָ בֵּ֥ין הַמְּצָרִֽים,” which means that we found no comfort among the Goyim, but were mercilessly pursued.
(Perhaps the only way out is to return in Teshuvah and to literally return to the holy soil of Yisrael, as the Belzer Rav suggested.)
But, why in fact, is this Kareis different from other Krisos?
Tikunei Zohar [51A] states that Chameitz and Se’or correspond to the Eirev Rav, the menacing Mixed Multitude of gentiles who left Egypt with the B’nei Yisrael and instigated the Cheit HaEigel.
On Pesach, Chameitz that enters an unleavened substance contaminates it. It represents, not a step towards Eretz Yisrael and towards Hashem’s will, but an about-face to that destiny. It is a misguided and misleading regression to the impurity we desperately escaped in Egypt. It is not a choice to be a part of the chosen in-group of Hashem’s loyal subjects. It is a choice for harsh Galus.
We should be Zocheh to reverse the course of Chameitz, Galus, and the Eirev Rav, and redirect ourselves on the path back to Eretz Yisrael and Geulah with the coming of Moshiach, Bimheirah BiYomeinu! Have a wonderful Shabbos!
-Yehoshua Shmuel Eisenberg