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Community Newsletter

Shabbos Toldos | 1-8 Kislev 5780

EREV SHABBOS FRI NOV 29th
Shacharis 6:50 AM /ROSH CHODESH KISLEV
Mincha/Candles/Maariv  4:02 PM

SHABBOS SAT NOV 30th
Shacharis: 9 AM /Sof Zman Krias Shema 9:46 AM
Shabbos Mincha 4:02 PM
Maariv/Havdalah 5:04 PM followed by inspirational JEM videos

WEEKDAY SERVICES
Sun Shacharis  9 AM
Mon- Fri Shacharis 7 AM
Sun-Thu Mincha 4:10 PM /FOLLOWED IMMEDIATELY BY MAARIV/

KIDDUSH SPONSORS
Kiddush Lite – No Sponsor. Cholent TBD.

THE NORTH SEATTLE ERUV STATUS: -TBD
Visit 
www.twitter.com/cstleruv  for current eruv status or to sign up for SMS alerts.  North Seattle Eruv status flag on the NE 65th Street side of CSTL: Green flag means the Eruv is up, Red flag the Eruv is down.

MAZEL TOV MAZEL TOV
Mazel Tov to Rabbi Levi and Rivka Levitin and their families on the birth of their new daughter Golda!  May they raise her to Torah, Chupa, and Ma’asim Tovim! Only Simchas!

BARUCH DAYAN EMETH
We are saddened to report the passing of Seemah Judah Spitzbart (Simha Matana Bat Ramah ZT”L) , beloved mother of Harry, Jacob, Sylvia, Sam and (Milton of Blessed Memory), and wife of Max Spitzbart ZT”L.  Funeral  at 11:45 AM, Friday, 1 Kislev, at Bikur Cholim Cemetery, 1340 North 115th St Seattle. May the family be comforted with all the mourners of Tzion and Yerushalayim.

AVOS u’BONIM SEASON KICKOFF THIS MOTZEI SHABBOS SAT NOV 30th (3 Kislev) 6:00 PM
Inspiring programs for fathers and children.  Living Torah Video, Raffle, Prizes, Delicious Refreshments, Grand Prize Raffle.  All ages welcome! Sponsorships available – Contact 
RabbiHerbstman@gmail.com

CHANUKAH ON ICE – WED DEC 25th 2:45 PM
At Highland Ice Arena, 18005 Aurora Ave N. .  Free Admission. Skate rental available for $4. Sponsored by a generous donation to the CSTL Children’s Program.  RSVP and More info 
RabbiHerbstman@gmail.com

LADIES DANCE NIGHT OUT – SUN DEC 15th 7:30 PM
At All That Dance, 3012 NE Blakely St.  Sponsored by the Seattle Jewish Women’s Circle.  RSVP and More info 
https://tinyurl.com/cstlwomensevent

LIKUTEI TORAH/TORAH OHR WITH RABBI HERBSTMAN – 8:15 AM SHABBOS MORNING
All are welcome to this inspiring class in the merit of a complete recovery רפואה  שלימה for of Chaya Sarah Malka bas Bracha Leah Chava  and Eliana Rivka bas Sarah. .

RABBI MENDY’S SICHO CLASS – SHABBOS AFTERNOON 3:15 PM
This week featuring inspiring words of Torah in the merit of a complete recovery רפואה  שלימה for of Chaya Sarah Malka bas Bracha Leah Chava and Eliana Rivka bas Sarah. We will be learning a Sicho on Parshat Toldos with Rabbi Herbstman.

TOT PROGRAM /TBD

CSTL JUNIOR CONGREGATION 10 am – Noon
RabbiHerbstman@gmail.com

WOMEN’S SUNDAY TEHILLIM AT CSTL – 10 AM
In the library.  Come say a prayer for those in need. 

WOMEN’S MONDAY EVENING LEARNING  8 PM
Weekly learning class for women with Rabbi Emlen  This class is dedicated to the speedy recovery/refuah shlaimah of Sarah Goldberg      Chaya Sarah Malkah bas Brochoh Leah Chavah. This fast paced class is based on the Lubavitcher Rebbe’s, OBM, Sichos.   All levels of knowledge are welcome! Asking questions is not only allowed, it is encouraged!    At the home of the Kavkas  4002 NE 72nd St Seattle. Light refreshments are served

Weekly Talmud Class with Rabbi Levitin –Sundays following 9 am Shacharis
Gemora Baba Basra with Rabbi Levitin after 9 am Shacharis

Weekly History Class for Women with Chanie Levitin Tue 7:30 pm
At Rebbetzin Levitin’s home, 6519 49th Ave NE.  For more info, 
chanielevitin@gmail.com

Talmud Class with Rabbi Mendy Levitin
Please contact Shuky Meyer at +1-347-761-2134 to be added to the WhatsApp group, for updated time and location

KIDDUSH SPONSORSHIPS AVAILABLE
If you would like to sponsor Kiddush at CSTL, please contact Marion Kitz Gabbai Kiddush, 
miriamkitz@hotmail.com .Please inform Marion by the preceding Sunday evening so that we have time to prepare properly.  Kiddush Lite Sponsor $150 includes meat cholent, Kiddush Sponsor $250 with Pareve Chulent or $350 with meat cholent. Kiddush can be paid for at www.CSTLSeattle.org


COMMUNITY NEWS

HELP BRING AN EL AL SEATTLE - TEL-AVIV NON-STOP TO SEATAC AIRPORT!
The Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle is assisting the Port of Seattle in advocating for a round trip, non-stop EL AL flight from Seattle to Tel Aviv.  Albert Israel is collecting links to events of Pacific Northwest/Israel related exchanges, such as business, educational and/or cultural interactions. The more Seattle/Israel activities that can be documented, the better the chance of securing that route. Spread the word, and help by contacting Albert Israel  
jewishalbert@yahoo.com   

Seattle Kollel Events
Sat. nights, 6:30 pm, Avo U'Banim at the Kollel
Monday nights, Nov. 18-Dec. 16, 7:00 pm, Hebrew Crash Course
Women's Night Out, Nov. 30, 9:00 pm, Mosaic Art
All classes at the Kollel. More info: 
www.seattlekollel.org

Sunday Women’s Shiur: Getting in Touch with Our Tefillah
SUN 10:20 AM AT BCMH. With Rabbi Tannenbaum.  For a video of last week’s shiur 
https://vimeo.com/370771561

LADINO DAY - THU DEC. 5
Ladino Day will survey the life cycle customs and traditions unique to Sepharadim from the Ottoman Empire. Performances of Ladino songs by the Ladineros with Hazzan Isaac Azose, Seattle’s long time Ladino conversation group, a Ladino reading by Anna Jacoby (Congregation Ezra Bessaroth) and a multimedia presentation by Professor Devin Naar, will bring memories of these Sephardic traditions to life. 
www.EzraBessaroth.Net

Seattle Hebrew Academy Annual Gala Dinner DEC 8th
Honoring Aaron & Joanna Sandorffy. More info: 
http://www.seattlehebrewacademy.org

Derech Emunah Girl’s High School Open House Tue Dec 10th 7-9 PM
Open house for Parents of Prospective Students Contact: Cheryl Greene 
cgreene@derechemunah.com  206.402.6621 www.derechemunah.org

SHABBAT DINNER HONORING RABBI & MRS BENZAQUEN ON GOLDEN ANNIVERSARY - FRI DEC 20th
Join us for a very special Shabbat dinner at Ezra Bessaroth as we honor our beloved Rabbi Simon & CecIlia Benzaquen on the occasion of their 50th wedding anniversary. Friday, December 20, services at 4pm, dinner at 5pm,Cost is $30/person, $75/family. 3 and under, free. This event will sell out so reserve your spot today. 
www.EzraBessaroth.net

19ый Ежегодный Ханукальный Вечер -SUN DEC 29th 4:00 PM
Chabad Jewish Russian Center 1114 NE Perkins Way, Shoreline WA 98155 . Design your own t-shirt. Hot Donuts, Latkes, Lechaim. RSVP 
rabbi@shalomseattle.org

Torah,Tea and Cookies with Rabbi Rosenfeld – THU 9 PM
At Mercaz – 6011 37th Ave NE.   
www.mercazseattle.org

SEPHARDIC ADVENTURE CAMP REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN
Registration for Sephardic Adventure Camp is now open. Dates are August 1-18. For more information go to  
www.sephardicadventurecamp.org

LIMMUD SEATTLE –JAN 18th – 19th 2019.
At Bellevue College.  
www.limmudseattle.org 

Seattle Jewish Event Calendar
http://seattlejewishuniverse.org/

AIRPORT , LOCAL TRIPS, AND KOSHER RESTAURANT DELIVERY! – ELI DUBAN, DRIVER
NOW PROVIDING MOVING AND VAN SERVICE (UP TO 12 PEOPLE) NOW PROVIDING TOURS OF SEATTLE! Contact Eli at 206-771-2670 
RideSeattle@gmail.com 
JRide is now serving New York City  locals and tourists! Car seats available upon request. Contact JRide at 206-771-2670 or 
jridenewyork@gmail.com


REBBE’S SICHO – TOLDOS
https://www.chabad.org/therebbe/article_cdo/aid/92011/jewish/Toldos-Yaakov-and-Esau-Two-Manners-of-Service.htm © SichosInEnglish.org

At the beginning of the Torah portion Toldos, the Torah relates that when Rivkah was pregnant with Ya’akov and Esav, “the children clashed within her.” Our Sages explain that, while still within the womb, Ya’akov was drawn to holiness, while Esav was attracted to idolatry.

Esav’s behavior is difficult to fathom. The Patriarchs were, as the Midrash states, “truly the [Divine] Chariot,” which, as the Alter Rebbe explains, means that “all their organs were completely holy,” and that “through their lives, they served as a vehicle for nothing but the Divine Will.”

Understandably, their children were conceived and born in complete holiness, and within them was found not only the “power of their father” but also the essence of their father. How can it be that Yitzchak’s son, Esav, should innately be drawn to idolatry?

Since “the deeds of the Patriarchs are a sign unto their progeny” (i.e., the deeds of the Patriarchs provide the strength and inspiration which their progeny need in order to emulate their behavior), it follows that all manner of spiritual service found in the Jewish people are also to be found — at least as a “sign” — within the service of the Patriarchs.

The Rambam explains that there are two general manners of spiritual service: the individual who desires to do only good, and the one who desires to do evil, but conquers his evil inclination.

Since the Patriarchs were on such a lofty spiritual level that they only desired to fulfill G‑d’s will, where is the “sign” within their service that inspires and empowers their descendants to overcome the blandishments of evil? The Patriarchs themselves were never subject to such temptations.

Moreover, even a person who conquers his evil inclination is merely tempted by evil — he does not actually succumb. However, Jews also have the service of repentance, wherein they rectify inappropriate behavior. How are we to find the “signs” of repentance within the behavior of such sterling individuals as the Patriarchs?

Although the Patriarchs experienced no internal conflict, they were still faced with external opposition to their way of life, opposition that they had to overcome. And, although conquest of one’s own evil inclination may be much more difficult than overcoming outside opposition, nevertheless, the Patriarchs’ service in this regard also served as an empowerment to their children, for the following reason: by conquering one’s evil inclination, a person shows how greatly attached he is to G‑d; although he desires to do evil, this desire does not hinder his will to do only good.

This is expressed even more forcefully through repentance. Though the person has actually succumbed to evil, his innermost desire to remain attached to G‑d is so strong that he conquers his evil, regrets his past and returns to His service.

Herein lies the inspiration we all draw from the Patriarchs: this inner strength and complete unity with G‑d, a unity so solid that nothing in the world can weaken it, is inherited by us from the Patriarchs, who were a “chariot” to G‑d, such that it was impossible for them to sunder this connection for even a moment.

Thus, although the “conquest” of the Patriarchs only applied to external forces, the underlying root of their conquest — their unparalleled unity with G‑d — empowers their children to overcome not only external evil but internal evil as well.

These two manners of service — “wholly righteous” and “overcoming evil” — were also mirrored in their children — Ya’akov was completely righteous, and Esav had the task of conquering an innate tendency towards evil.

Based on Likkutei Sichos, Vol. XX, pp. 108-112

Shabbos Chayei Sarah – Mevarchim Kislev | 24 MarCheshvan – 1 Kislev 5780

EREV SHABBOS FRI NOV 22nd
Shacharis 7 AM
Mincha/Candles/Maariv  4:07 PM

SHABBOS SAT NOV 23rd
Tehilim for Mevarchim Kislev 7:45 AM
Shacharis: 9 AM /Sof Zman Krias Shema 9:40 AM
Shabbos Mincha 4:07 PM
Maariv/Havdalah 5:09 PM followed by inspirational JEM videos

WEEKDAY SERVICES
Sun Shacharis  9 AM
Mon- Wed Shacharis 7 AM
Thu-Fri Shacharis 6:50 AM /ROSH CHODESH KISLEV
Sun-Thu Mincha 4:15 PM /FOLLOWED IMMEDIATELY BY MAARIV/

KIDDUSH SPONSORS
Kiddush sponsored by the Dershowitz Family in honor of new parents Mayer and Shoshi Goldman.  Welcome to the Goldman and Niasoff families!  Thank you to Rabbi Mendy Levitin for his special Meat Cholent, sponsored by the Dershowitz Family

THE NORTH SEATTLE ERUV STATUS: -PENDING
Visit 
www.twitter.com/cstleruv  for current eruv status or to sign up for SMS alerts.  North Seattle Eruv status flag on the NE 65th Street side of CSTL: Green flag means the Eruv is up, Red flag the Eruv is down.

MAZEL TOV MAZEL TOV
Mazel Tov to the Dershowitz, Goldman, and Niasoff  families on their new grandson! May they raise him to Torah, Chupa, and Ma’asim Tovim! Only Simchas!

AVOS u’BONIM RETURNS SAT NOV 30th (3 Kislev) 6:30 PM
Inspiring programs for fathers and childrens.  More info to follow.

LADIES DANCE NIGHT OUT – SUN DEC 15th 7:30 PM
At All That Dance, 3012 NE Blakely St.  Sponsored by the Seattle Jewish Women’s Circle.  RSVP and More info 
https://tinyurl.com/cstlwomensevent

LIKUTEI TORAH/TORAH OHR WITH RABBI MENDY – 8:15 AM SHABBOS MORNING
This week we will be learning BE"H about  וַיֵּצֵ֥א יִצְחָ֛ק לָשׂ֥וּחַ בַּשָּׂדֶ֖ה לִפְנ֣וֹת עָ֑רֶב - And Isaac went forth to pray in the field towards evening" . What is the significance of the field? And why in the evening?! All are welcome to this inspiring class in the merit of a complete recovery רפואה  שלימה for Chaya Sarah Malka bas Bracha  and Eliana Rivka bas Sarah. .

RABBI MENDY’S SICHO CLASS – SHABBOS AFTERNOON 3:35 PM
This week featuring inspiring words of Torah in the merit of a complete recovery רפואה  שלימה for Chaya Sarah Malka bas Bracha  and Eliana Rivka bas Sarah. We will be learning a Sicho on Parshat Chayei Sarah.

TOT PROGRAM /TBD

CSTL JUNIOR CONGREGATION 10 am – Noon
RabbiHerbstman@gmail.com

WOMEN’S SUNDAY TEHILLIM AT CSTL – 10 AM
In the library.  Come say a prayer for those in need. 

WOMEN’S MONDAY EVENING LEARNING  8 PM
Weekly learning class for women with Rabbi Emlen  This class is dedicated to the speedy recovery/refuah shlaimah of Sarah Goldberg      Chaya Sarah Malkah bas Brochoh Leah Chavah. This fast paced class is based on the Lubavitcher Rebbe’s, OBM, Sichos.   All levels of knowledge are welcome! Asking questions is not only allowed, it is encouraged!    At the home of the Kavkas  4002 NE 72nd St Seattle. Light refreshments are served

Weekly Talmud Class with Rabbi Levitin –Sundays following 9 am Shacharis
Gemora Baba Basra with Rabbi Levitin after 9 am Shacharis

Weekly History Class for Women with Chanie Levitin Tue 7:30 pm
At Rebbetzin Levitin’s home, 6519 49th Ave NE.  For more info, 
chanielevitin@gmail.com

Talmud Class with Rabbi Mendy Levitin
Please contact Shuky Meyer at +1-347-761-2134 to be added to the WhatsApp group, for updated time and location

KIDDUSH SPONSORSHIPS AVAILABLE
If you would like to sponsor Kiddush at CSTL, please contact Marion Kitz Gabbai Kiddush, 
miriamkitz@hotmail.com .Please inform Marion by the preceding Sunday evening so that we have time to prepare properly. Kiddush Lite Sponsor $150 includes meat cholent, Kiddush Sponsor $250 with Pareve Chulent or $350 with meat cholent. Kiddush can be paid for at www.CSTLSeattle.org


 COMMUNITY NEWS

Sunday Women’s Shiur: Getting in Touch with Our Tefillah SUN 10:20 AM AT BCMH.
With Rabbi Tannenbaum.  For a video of last week’s shiur:   
https://vimeo.com/370771561

LADINO DAY - THU DEC. 5
Ladino Day will survey the life cycle customs and traditions unique to Sepharadim from the Ottoman Empire. Performances of Ladino songs by the Ladineros with Hazzan Isaac Azose, Seattle’s long time Ladino conversation group, a Ladino reading by Anna Jacoby (Congregation Ezra Bessaroth) and a multimedia presentation by Professor Devin Naar, will bring memories of these Sephardic traditions to life. 
www.EzraBessaroth.Net

Seattle Hebrew Academy Annual Gala Dinner DEC 8th
Honoring Aaron & Joanna Sandorffy. More info: 
http://www.seattlehebrewacademy.org

Seattle Jewish Event Calendar
http://seattlejewishuniverse.org/

AIRPORT , LOCAL TRIPS, AND KOSHER RESTAURANT DELIVERY! – ELI DUBAN, DRIVER
NOW PROVIDING MOVING AND VAN SERVICE (UP TO 12 PEOPLE) NOW PROVIDING TOURS OF SEATTLE! Contact Eli at 206-771-2670 
RideSeattle@gmail.com 
JRide is now serving New York City  locals and tourists! Car seats available upon request. Contact JRide at 206-771-2670 or 
jridenewyork@gmail.com


REBBE’S SICHO – CHAYEI SARAH
https://www.chabad.org/therebbe/article_cdo/aid/92007/jewish/Vayeira-Performing-Mitzvos-The-Natural-Approach.htm ©SichosInEnglish.org

The central theme of each Torah portion is indicated by its name.1 The name of this week’s portion, Chayei Sarah, the “Life of Sarah,” seems to defy this rule. The entire portion speaks of events that transpired after Sarah’s demise, a theme in stark contrast to the “life of Sarah.”

The opening section of Chayei Sarah2 relates how Avraham purchased a burial place for his wife; the second section3 recounts the events surrounding the marriage of Yitzchak and Rivkah — at which time “Yitzchak found consolation for the loss of his mother.”4

So too, the closing portion of Chayei Sarah5 describes how Avraham took another wife, and recounts Yishmael’s progeny — something in total opposition to Sarah, who declared, “send away this handmaiden and her child.”6 How then can we possibly say that the “life of Sarah” is the portion’s central theme?

The Gemara states:7 “Our father Ya’akov did not die — as his progeny lives on, he too lives on.” The truly timeless aspect of human existence is that which derives from living at one with G‑d — He who is truly timeless and eternal. Since Ya’akov lived in this manner, his true life includes his continuing effect, even after his soul left his body.

This effect was perceived not only in his soul’s continued unity with G‑d — an eternality of the soul — but more importantly, that in this world as well, he continued to live through his children — who pursued the eternal lifestyle of their father Ya’akov.8

The same is true with regard to Sarah. The quality of Sarah’s life, the true “life of Sarah,” can best be measured after her passing, by dint of the legacy she passed on to her progeny.

Avraham and Sarah differed in that Avraham fathered not only Yitzchak but also Yishmael, thus becoming not only the father of the Jewish people but also of other nations,9 while Sarah was the mother of Yitzchak exclusively, thereby connecting her specifically with the Jewish nation. Sarah was thus better able to discern the unique quality of the Jewish people, who descended solely through Yitzchak.

This dominant theme in Sarah’s life is the central motif of the portion Chayei Sarah.

Avraham buried Sarah in the Meoras HaMachpeilah, the burial place of Adam and Chavah, parents of all humanity. As such, the Meoras HaMachpeilah was seemingly connected to all of mankind, not only to the Jewish people. Nonetheless, Avraham purchased it for the exclusive use of the Jews, thereby emphasizing Sarah’s theme — the special quality of the Jewish people.

The Torah then goes on to relate that this quality was apparent even in relation to those who were of kindred spirit with Avraham: for our sages relate10 that when Avraham’s faithful student and servant, Eliezer, told Avraham of his desire that his daughter marry Yitzchak, he was told it was out of the question — Yitzchak was to marry someone from Avraham’s family.

The conclusion of the portion then informs us of an even greater dimension to this special quality found in the Jews — that they far outdistanced even Avraham’s other progeny.

After the Torah relates “Avraham married another woman whose name was Keturah,”11 and mentions the children born to them, it goes on to state:12 “Avraham gave all that he owned to Yitzchak, and, to the children of the concubine, Avraham gave gifts and sent them away.” Similarly, Yishmael’s offspring are alluded to as descending from “Hagar the Egyptian, Sarah’s slave”13 — of decidedly lesser rank than Yitzchak.

Herein lies the connection of this Torah portion to the “life of Sarah”: it stresses her life’s work — emphasizing the special quality inherent within the Jewish people.

Based on Likkutei Sichos, Vol. XV, pp. 145-150

Shabbos Vayeira | 17-24 MarCheshvan 5780

 

EREV SHABBOS FRI NOV 15th
Shacharis 7:00 AM
Mincha/Candles/Maariv  4:14 PM

SHABBOS SAT NOV 16th  
Shacharis: 9:00 AM /Sof Zman Krias Shema 9:34 AM
Shabbos Mincha 4:14 PM
Maariv/Havdalah 5:16 PM followed by inspirational JEM videos

WEEKDAY SERVICES
Sun Shacharis  9 AM
Mon- Fri Shacharis 7 AM
Sun-Thu Mincha 4:15 PM /FOLLOWED IMMEDIATELY BY MAARIV/

KIDDUSH LITE
Kiddush Lite – No sponsor.  Meat Cholent sponsored by Dr Vernon and Liz Neppe in honor of The Shabbos Project.  Thank you to Rabbi Mendy Levitin for his special Meat Cholent.

THE NORTH SEATTLE ERUV STATUS: -PENDING
Visit 
www.twitter.com/cstleruv  for current eruv status or to sign up for SMS alerts.  North Seattle Eruv status flag on the NE 65th Street side of CSTL: Green flag means the Eruv is up, Red flag the Eruv is down.

MAZEL TOV MAZEL TOV
Mazel Tov to Andy and Nina Krasnow on the engagement of Nattie to Izzy Kelsic! May they merit to build a bais ne’eman b’Yisroel! Only Simchas!

CSTL's Children's Program Special Event - This Motzei Shabbat SAT NOV 16th 6:30 PM
All children 6+ are invited to Cash in your Torah Dollars for some amazing prizes, and for Pizza and a Movie (Both are Kosher L'M'Hadrin). RSVP a MUST by THIS WED to 
mherbstman@gmail.com. This program is generously funded by the Children's program

AVOS u’BONIM RETURNS SAT NOV 30th (3 Kislev) 6:30 PM
Inspiring programs for fathers and childrens.  More info to follow.

FARBRENGEN ALERT – CHOF MARCHESHVAN - MON NOV 18th – VENUE TBD.
The fifth Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Sholom DovBer Schneersohn (known by the acronym "Rashab"), was born on the 20th of MarCheshvan of the year 5621 from creation (1860).  After the passing of his father, Rabbi Shmuel of Lubavitch, in 1882, Rabbi Sholom DovBer assumed the leadership of the movement. Over the next 38 years, he wrote and delivered some 2,000 maamarim (discourses of Chassidic teaching) including the famed hemshechim (serialized discourses) which contain his profound analytical treatment of Chabad Chassidism.  
www.chabad.org/calendar

LADIES DANCE NIGHT OUT – SUN DEC 15th 7:30 PM
At All That Dance, 3012 NE Blakely St.  Sponsored by the Seattle Jewish Women’s Circle.  RSVP and More info 
https://tinyurl.com/cstlwomensevent

LIKUTEI TORAH/TORAH OHR WITH RABBI MENDY – 8:15 AM SHABBOS MORNING
All are welcome to this inspiring class in the merit of a complete recovery רפואה  שלימה for Chaya Sarah Malka bas Bracha  and Eliana Rivka bas Sarah. . This week we will be learning Be"h about  אֵֽרֲדָה־נָּ֣א וְאֶרְאֶ֔ה    "I will descend now and see" Why does G-d need to descend to see? He sees all from Heaven?!

RABBI MENDY’S SICHO CLASS – SHABBOS AFTERNOON 3:45 PM
Inspiring words of Torah in the merit of a complete recovery רפואה  שלימה for Chaya Sarah Malka bas Bracha  and Eliana Rivka bas Sarah. We will Be learning a Sicho on Parshat Vayeira- and Chof  Cheshvan..

TOT PROGRAM /TBD

CSTL JUNIOR CONGREGATION 10 am – Noon
RabbiHerbstman@gmail.com

WOMEN’S SUNDAY TEHILLIM AT CSTL – 10 AM
In the library.  Come say a prayer for those in need. 

WOMEN’S MONDAY EVENING LEARNING  8 PM
Weekly learning class for women with Rabbi Emlen  This class is dedicated to the speedy recovery/refuah shlaimah of Sarah Goldberg      Chaya Sarah Malkah bas Brochoh Leah Chavah. This fast paced class is based on the Lubavitcher Rebbe’s, OBM, Sichos.   All levels of knowledge are welcome! Asking questions is not only allowed, it is encouraged!    At the home of the Kavkas  4002 NE 72nd St Seattle. Light refreshments are served

Weekly Talmud Class with Rabbi Levitin –Sundays following 9 am Shacharis
Gemora Baba Basra with Rabbi Levitin after 9 am Shacharis

Weekly History Class for Women with Chanie Levitin Tue 7:30 pm
At Rebbetzin Levitin’s home, 6519 49th Ave NE.  For more info, 
chanielevitin@gmail.com

Talmud Class with Rabbi Mendy Levitin
Please contact Shuky Meyer at +1-347-761-2134 to be added to the WhatsApp group, for updated time and location

KIDDUSH SPONSORSHIPS AVAILABLE
If you would like to sponsor Kiddush at CSTL, please contact Marion Kitz Gabbai Kiddush, 
miriamkitz@hotmail.com .Please inform Marion by the preceding Sunday evening so that we have time to prepare properly.  Kiddush Lite Sponsor $150 includes meat cholent, Kiddush Sponsor $250 with Pareve Chulent or $350 with meat cholent. Kiddush can be paid for at www.CSTLSeattle.org


COMMUNITY NEWS

Sunday Women’s Shiur: Getting in Touch with Our Tefillah SUN 10:20 AM AT BCMH.
With Rabbi Tannenbaum.  For a video of last week’s shiur:   
https://vimeo.com/370771561

LADINO DAY - THU DEC. 5
Ladino Day will survey the life cycle customs and traditions unique to Sepharadim from the Ottoman Empire. Performances of Ladino songs by the Ladineros with Hazzan Isaac Azose, Seattle’s long time Ladino conversation group, a Ladino reading by Anna Jacoby (Congregation Ezra Bessaroth) and a multimedia presentation by Professor Devin Naar, will bring memories of these Sephardic traditions to life. 
www.EzraBessaroth.Net

Seattle Hebrew Academy Annual Gala Dinner DEC 8th
Honoring Aaron & Joanna Sandorffy. More info: 
http://www.seattlehebrewacademy.org

Seattle Jewish Event Calendar
http://seattlejewishuniverse.org/

AIRPORT , LOCAL TRIPS, AND KOSHER RESTAURANT DELIVERY! – ELI DUBAN, DRIVER
NOW PROVIDING MOVING AND VAN SERVICE (UP TO 12 PEOPLE) NOW PROVIDING TOURS OF SEATTLE! Competitive rates, excellent service.  Contact Eli at 206-771-2670 RideSeattle@gmail.com


REBBE’S SICHO – VAYEIRA
https://www.chabad.org/therebbe/article_cdo/aid/92007/jewish/Vayeira-Performing-Mitzvos-The-Natural-Approach.htm ©SichosInEnglish.org

The Torah portion of Vayeira opens with the words: “G‑d revealed Himself to Avraham.”1 The Gemara2 comments that this took place on the third day following Avraham’s circumcision; on that day, G‑d visited him to inquire after his welfare. How does the Gemara deduce that this took place on the third day and not earlier?

The ability of the Jewish people to perform Torah and mitzvos subsequent to Mattan Torah , the Giving of the Torah, derives from the performance of the commandments by the nation’s forbears, for “the deeds of the Patriarchs are a sign unto their progeny.”3 However, the mitzvos performed by the Patriarchs were mainly spiritual in nature, and did not have a great effect on the objects involved. In contrast, the mitzvos performed after Mattan Torah permeate physical objects with holiness.

In order that there be a relationship between the mitzvos fulfilled by the Patriarchs and those performed by their descendants, it was necessary that at least one mitzvah be fulfilled by the Patriarchs in exactly the manner that would later be employed by their descendants. This was the mitzvah of circumcision.

One of the main aspects of the mitzvos subsequent to Mattan Torah is their performance in as natural a manner as possible, without recourse to miracles and the like. This is because mitzvos are meant to refine the world by causing sanctity to enter it, rather than miraculously negating its physicality.

This requirement to perform a mitzvah in the most natural manner possible also applies to the preparations necessary for its performance,4 as well as to its effects.

Understandably, when a mitzvah, the preparation or the results thereof, involve natural difficulties, one should not use supernatural means in order to remove these difficulties. Of course, one should not seek out discomfort and hindrances, but if these are a natural part of a mitzvah or its aftermath, they should not be circumvented by supernatural means.

Since Avraham’s circumcision was entirely similar to the mitzvah performed after Mattan Torah , it follows that no miraculous intervention should have been involved in the Patriarch’s natural healing process.

Accordingly, we must understand how it was that the angel Raphael — the angel of healing5 — came to Avraham in order to heal him.6 Why would G‑d send a special messenger to alleviate our Patriarch’s natural discomfort?

The Rambam7 explains that the term “angels” also applies to natural forces. The reason for this is that all things below have a spiritual source above.8 Since the forces of nature descend from angels, they are sometimes called angels — after their source.

It therefore follows that every natural healing derives from the angel Raphael, albeit after a tremendous descent from the spiritual to the physical, until the angel’s action is vested within the physical garments of nature and manifests itself in the specific recovery of a particular individual.

Most people are only capable of seeing the specific healing vested within nature. Avraham, however, was able to perceive the spiritual source of his healing — “he beheld three ‘people,’ ”9 one of them being the angel Raphael. Avraham’s recovery was thus entirely natural; he merely observed the healing at its source.

Therefore, we must say that Raphael came to heal Avraham only on the third day following Avraham’s circumcision, when healing takes place naturally; coming any earlier would have interfered with the natural process. Since Raphael came to Avraham on the same day that G‑d appeared to him, it follows that G‑d’s appearance was also on the third day.

Based on Likkutei Sichos, Vol. V, pp. 77-83

Shabbos Lech Lecha | 10-17 MarCheshvan 5780

EREV SHABBOS FRI NOV 8th
Shacharis 7 AM
Mincha/Candles/Maariv  4:23 PM  PST

SHABBOS SAT NOV 9th  
Shacharis: 9 AM /Sof Zman Krias Shema 9:29 AM
Shabbos Mincha 4:23 PM
Maariv/Havdalah 5:25 PM followed by inspirational JEM videos

WEEKDAY SERVICES
Sun Shacharis  9 AM
Mon- Fri Shacharis 7 AM
Sun-Thu Mincha 4:30 PM /FOLLOWED IMMEDIATELY BY MAARIV/

KIDDUSH LITE
Kiddush Lite – No sponsor.  Meat Cholent co-sponsored by Shimon Dershowitz in memory of the victims of Kristallnacht, and for the yahrzeits of Ron Goldberg (Yerachmeil ben Moshe ZT”L) and Laura Greene (Leah bas Mordechai ZT”L, sister of Jonathan Greene).  Meat Cholent is co-sponsored by the Duban Family. Thank you to Rabbi Mendy Levitin for his special Meat Cholent.

THE NORTH SEATTLE ERUV STATUS: -PENDING
Visit 
www.twitter.com/cstleruv  for current eruv status or to sign up for SMS alerts.  North Seattle Eruv status flag on the NE 65th Street side of CSTL: Green flag means the Eruv is up, Red flag the Eruv is down.

LADIES DANCE NIGHT OUT – SUN DEC 15th 7:30 PM
At All That Dance, 3012 NE Blakely St.  Sponsored by the Seattle Jewish Women’s Circle.  RSVP and More info 
https://tinyurl.com/cstlwomensevent

LIKUTEI TORAH/TORAH OHR WITH RABBI MENDY – 8:15 AM SHABBOS MORNING
All are welcome to this inspiring class in the merit of a complete recovery רפואה  שלימה for Chaya Sarah Malka bas Bracha  and Eliana Rivka bas Sarah. This week G-d willing we will be learning a Chasidic insight  about Avram שכל הנעלם מכל רעיון  “intellect  concealed from all ideas” – and how to reveal that !

RABBI MENDY’S SICHO CLASS – SHABBOS AFTERNOON 3:50 PM
Inspiring words of Torah in the merit of a complete recovery רפואה  שלימה for Chaya Sarah Malka bas Bracha  and Eliana Rivka bas Sarah. We will Be learning a Sicho on Parsha Lech Lecha.

TOT PROGRAM /TBD

CSTL JUNIOR CONGREGATION 10 am – Noon
RabbiHerbstman@gmail.com

WOMEN’S SUNDAY TEHILLIM AT CSTL – 10 AM
In the library.  Come say a prayer for those in need. 

WOMEN’S MONDAY EVENING LEARNING  8 PM
Weekly learning class for women with Rabbi Emlen  This class is dedicated to the speedy recovery/refuah shlaimah of Sarah Goldberg      Chaya Sarah Malkah bas Brochoh Leah Chavah. This fast paced class is based on the Lubavitcher Rebbe’s, OBM, Sichos.   All levels of knowledge are welcome! Asking questions is not only allowed, it is encouraged!    At the home of the Kavkas  4002 NE 72nd St Seattle. Light refreshments are served

Weekly Talmud Class with Rabbi Levitin –Sundays following 9 am Shacharis
Gemora Baba Basra with Rabbi Levitin after 9 am Shacharis

Weekly History Class for Women with Chanie Levitin Tue 7:30 pm
At Rebbetzin Levitin’s home, 6519 49th Ave NE.  For more info, 
chanielevitin@gmail.com

Talmud Class with Rabbi Mendy Levitin
Please contact Shuky Meyer at +1-347-761-2134 to be added to the WhatsApp group, for updated time and location

KIDDUSH SPONSORSHIPS AVAILABLE
If you would like to sponsor Kiddush at CSTL, please contact Marion Kitz Gabbai Kiddush, 
miriamkitz@hotmail.com .Please inform Marion by the preceding Sunday evening so that we have time to prepare properly.  Kiddush Lite Sponsor $150 includes meat cholent, Kiddush Sponsor $250 with Pareve Chulent or $350 with meat cholent. Kiddush can be paid for at www.CSTLSeattle.org


COMMUNITY NEWS

Sunday Women’s Shiur: Getting in Touch with Our Tefillah SUN 10:20 AM AT BCMH.
With Rabbi Tannenbaum.  For a video of last week’s shiur:   
https://vimeo.com/370771561

SEATTLE KOLLEL AVOS u’BANIM STARTS SAT EVE NOV 9th 6:30 PM
Boys & Girls learning Torah with their parents. Info: 
https://www.seattlekollel.com/avos-u-banim

JERUSALEM POST'S HERB KEINON TO SPEAK AT SJCC - WED. NOV 13
Isolated? A Look at Israel’s Relations With the World, Wednesday, November 13, 7:00 PM at The Stroum Jewish Community Center. Herb Keinon is the diplomatic correspondent for The Jerusalem Post, and has been at the paper for 33 years. A nation that dwells alone? Hardly. A look at Israel’s relations with the world, from Brazil to Bahrain, Romania to Rwanda. Register at 
www.AJC.org/seattle/isolated   For more information contact seattle@ajc.org  or 206-622-6315  

SUMMER CAMP SCHOLARSHIPS AND TEEN ISREAL TRIP SCHOLARSHIPS – APPLY TODAY
www.JewishInSeattle.org 

LADINO DAY - THU DEC. 5
Ladino Day will survey the life cycle customs and traditions unique to Sepharadim from the Ottoman Empire. Performances of Ladino songs by the Ladineros with Hazzan Isaac Azose, Seattle’s long time Ladino conversation group, a Ladino reading by Anna Jacoby (Congregation Ezra Bessaroth) and a multimedia presentation by Professor Devin Naar, will bring memories of these Sephardic traditions to life. 
www.EzraBessaroth.Net

Seattle Jewish Event Calendar
http://seattlejewishuniverse.org/

AIRPORT , LOCAL TRIPS, AND KOSHER RESTAURANT DELIVERY! – ELI DUBAN, DRIVER
NOW PROVIDING MOVING AND VAN SERVICE (UP TO 12 PEOPLE) NOW PROVIDING TOURS OF SEATTLE! Competitive rates, excellent service.  Contact Eli at 206-771-2670 RideSeattle@gmail.com


REBBE’S SICHO – LECH LECHA
https://www.chabad.org/therebbe/article_cdo/aid/92004/jewish/Lech-Lecha-Man-is-Born-to-Toil.htm ©SichosInEnglish.org

In the Torah portion of Lech Lecha, G‑d promises Avraham: “I shall give your children this land.”1 The Midrash comments:2 “While Avraham was traveling in Aram Naharayim… he observed the inhabitants eating, drinking and acting frivolously and wantonly. He said: ‘I wish to have no part in this land.’ When he arrived at the entrance of Tzur, he observed them weeding… cultivating… He said: ‘I wish to have my share in this land.’ G‑d said to him: ‘I shall give your children this land.’ ”

It is understandable that Avraham desired to have his portion among people who toiled and behaved properly, rather than among individuals who spent their lives frivolously.

However, G‑d’s promise that “I shall give your children this land,” meant that the Jewish people would inherit and conquer the entire land. What reason is there for connecting G‑d’s promise to the conduct of the land’s inhabitants during the time of Avraham?

The importance of labor and toil is to be seen from the verse: “Man is born to toil.”3 What is so important about toil and labor? Moreover, since G‑d is the Essence of Good and it is the nature of one who is good to act in a kind and benevolent manner, it seems strange that He made it necessary for man to work.

It is true that man’s nature is such that he derives pleasure from something accomplished through labor and toil, in accordance with the expression:4 “A person desires one measure of that which is his more than nine measures of that which belongs to his fellow.”

However, we cannot say that this is why G‑d made man work, for it is man’s nature to enjoy the fruits of his labor only because G‑d imbued him with this tendency.

So the original question remains: Why did G‑d create man in such a way that his greatest joy comes through toil? Why not create him with the ability to be delighted by idleness, for example?

The ultimate achievement of a human being lies not only in realizing his full potential, but in attaining a level such that he is, as it were, similar to his Creator, in line with the saying:5 “He becomes a partner with G‑d in Creation.”

It was for this reason that G‑d established the world in a manner such that the things which man needs for his existence are not ready-made. For it is through toil and labor that man is able to elevate himself, not only to the highest “recipient” level — the highest possible attainment of a created being — but to the level of a provider and “creator.”

This is why man does not derive pleasure from things acquired without effort, but is instead ashamed of them. Toil and effort are the hallmarks of mankind’s efforts to improve the world — he can thus enhance Creation and thereby become a “partner with G‑d.”

Labor that involves the recognition of and faith in G‑d as Creator and Provider6 leads to “labor in Torah,”7 whereby individuals lift the entire world to a level beyond itself. By doing so, one “creates” a new entity.

In a similar vein, the labor of the Jewish people in Eretz Yisrael consisted of working to “create” a holy land of Torah out of that which was previously mundane. The first steps taken in this direction were a fitting prelude to G‑d’s promise that “I shall give your children this land.”

Based on Likkutei Sichos, Vol. XV, pp. 93-99

Shabbos Noach | 3-10 MarCheshvan 5780

EREV SHABBOS FRI NOV 1st  
Shacharis 9 AM
Mincha/Candles/Maariv  5:33 PM

SHABBOS SAT NOV 2nd
Shacharis: 9 AM /Sof Zman Krias Shema 10:22 AM
Shabbos Mincha 5:33 PM
Maariv/Havdalah 6:35 PM followed by inspirational JEM videos
TURN CLOCKS BACK ONE HOUR AT 2 AM SUNDAY MORNING!

SPECIAL SHABBAT NOACH SHABBATON AT CSTL
Our main speakers are Randy Kessler, Executive Director of StandWithUs Northwest and his Israeli colleague, Aviv Attia, who has recently arrived in Seattle. We greatly appreciate them and also StandWithUs Northwest whom they represent for giving of their time spontaneously. תודה רבה. StandWithUs is a non-profit international education pro-Israel organization. StandWithUs supports Israel and fights Antisemitism through education. Through the speakers and materials of StandWithUs we will better understand the complex issues facing Israel and the Jewish people, through the lens of real people and real stories.
The topic for the Oneg Shabbat on Shabbat Evening about 8.30pm after dinner, is an informal discussion  on Israel today, and is at the home of Saifo and Frumi Marasow, 7201  40th Avenue NE, Seattle, 98115.
A second program after the Shabbat Kiddush lunch at CSTL,   where the speakers will  relate to “Answering tough questions about Israel”. The discussion will be interactive, in part. This is based on a booklet that StandWithUs has produced. The program will begin after the kiddush around  12.30 or 1.30pm so that others can come from outside.
Sponsor: Dr Vernon and Lis Neppe and the CSTL Education Program in honor of the great work being done by StandWithUs Northwest  Co-sponsor: Eliana (Sharon) Kelso who spontaneously was the first to contribute to this important educational meeting.
Contributors: Dr. Shimon Dershowitz, in honor of the yahrzeits of Susan’s father Ze’ev Wolf ben Hanoch Chenech ZT”L (1 MarCheshvan), Shimon’s father Efraim Alter ben Shmuel ZT”L (9 MarCheshvan), and Shimon’s mother Chana (Tikva) bas Yechezkel Lieb ZT”L (9 MarCheshvan)  and Yitzhak Rothman in honor and memory of the 21st yahrzeit of Mark Dykan, Mordechai Ze'ev ben HaRav Yaacov ZT”L (4th MarCheshvan). 
Yasher Koach to Saifo and Frumi Marasow who are hosting our guests and the Oneg Shabbat on the Friday evening, to our hardworking kiddush crew, including Rabbi Kavka, and to Galit Lurya for the poster, and, of course, our eminent speakers and discussants Randy Kessler and Aviv Attia. Thank you too to Rabbi Mendy Levitin for his special Meat Cholent sponsored by the Neppe family.

Weekday Services
Sun Shacharis  9 AM PST
Mon- Fri Shacharis 7 AM
Sun-Thu Mincha 4:30 PM /FOLLOWED IMMEDIATELY BY MAARIV/

THE NORTH SEATTLE ERUV STATUS: -PENDING
Visit 
www.twitter.com/cstleruv  for current eruv status or to sign up for SMS alerts.  North Seattle Eruv status flag on the NE 65th Street side of CSTL: Green flag means the Eruv is up, Red flag the Eruv is down.

WOMEN WINE AND WARDROBE – SUN NOV 3rd 7:30 PM
With Women’s expert Federica Gabardi.   RSVP and More info 
https://tinyurl.com/cstlwomensevent

LIKUTEI TORAH/TORAH OHR WITH RABBI MENDY – 8:15 AM SHABBOS MORNING
All are welcome to this inspiring class in the merit of a complete recovery רפואה  שלימה for Chaya Sarah Malka bas Bracha  and Eliana Rivka bas Sarah.

RABBI MENDY’S SICHO CLASS – SHABBOS AFTERNOON 4:35 PM
Inspiring words of Torah in the merit of a complete recovery רפואה  שלימה for Chaya Sarah Malka bas Bracha  and Eliana Rivka bas Sarah. We will Be learning a Sicho on Parsha Noach.

TOT PROGRAM /TBD

CSTL JUNIOR CONGREGATION 10 am – Noon
RabbiHerbstman@gmail.com

WOMEN’S SUNDAY TEHILLIM AT CSTL – 10 AM
In the library.  Come say a prayer for those in need. 

WOMEN’S MONDAY EVENING LEARNING  8 PM
Weekly learning class for women with Rabbi Emlen  This class is dedicated to the speedy recovery/refuah shlaimah of Sarah Goldberg      Chaya Sarah Malkah bas Brochoh Leah Chavah. This fast paced class is based on the Lubavitcher Rebbe’s, OBM, Sichos.   All levels of knowledge are welcome! Asking questions is not only allowed, it is encouraged!    At the home of the Kavkas  4002 NE 72nd St Seattle. Light refreshments are served

Weekly Talmud Class with Rabbi Levitin –Sundays following 9 am Shacharis
Gemora Baba Basra with Rabbi Levitin after 9 am Shacharis

Weekly History Class for Women with Chanie Levitin Tue 7:30 pm
At Rebbetzin Levitin’s home, 6519 49th Ave NE.  For more info, 
chanielevitin@gmail.com

Talmud Class with Rabbi Mendy Levitin
Please contact Shuky Meyer at +1-347-761-2134 to be added to the WhatsApp group, for updated time and location

KIDDUSH SPONSORSHIPS AVAILABLE
If you would like to sponsor Kiddush at CSTL, please contact Marion Kitz Gabbai Kiddush, 
miriamkitz@hotmail.com .Please inform Marion by the preceding Sunday evening so that we have time to prepare properly.  Kiddush Lite Sponsor $150 includes meat cholent, Kiddush Sponsor $250 with Pareve Chulent or $350 with meat cholent. Kiddush can be paid for at www.CSTLSeattle.org


COMMUNITY NEWS

PACO DIAZ IN CONCERT - FEATURING HAZZAN ISAAC AZOSE - SUN NOV 3
Don't miss this opportunity to see Judeo/Spanish superstar Paco Diaz in a rare local performance at the Stroum Jewish Community Center. Featuring our very own Hazzan Isaac Azose! Tickets may be purchased at 
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/paco-diez-in-concert-tickets-74235964769?aff=ebdssbeac  .

A Historic Evening with Eva Schloss - Stepsister of Anne Frank TUE NOV 5th 7 PM
Hear the story of noted speaker and author, Eva Schloss, a Holocaust survivor and stepsister of Anne Frank. Eva will be joined on stage on the Hub Ballroom by University of Washington President, Ana Mari Cauce, who will lead the conversation. Sponsored by ChabadUW.  RSVP:  
www.EvaSchlossUW.com 

Voices for Humanity Luncheon WED NOV 6th Noon - 1 pm
Join community members to celebrate the Holocaust Center for Humanity's 30th anniversary at the Sheraton Seattle – Downtown. Honoring 2019 Voices for Humanity Award recipient Alayne Sulkin. Luncheon Chairs: Lynne & Brad Smith. 
www.JewishInSeattle.org

SEATTLE KOLLEL AVOS u’BANIM STARTS SAT EVE NOV 9th 6:30 PM
Boys & Girls learning Torah with their parents. Info: 
https://www.seattlekollel.com/avos-u-banim

SUMMER CAMP SCHOLARSHIPS AND TEEN ISREAL TRIP SCHOLARSHIPS – APPLY TODAY
www.JewishInSeattle.org 

LADINO DAY - THU DEC. 5
Ladino Day will survey the life cycle customs and traditions unique to Sepharadim from the Ottoman Empire. From berit mila to bar mitsva, weddings to funerals, the program will highlight a selection of major life events and explore shifts in Sephardic culture and the Ladino language through textual and material artifacts, oral histories, and photographs. Performances of Ladino songs by the Ladineros with Hazzan Isaac Azose, Seattle’s long time Ladino conversation group, a Ladino reading by Anna Jacoby (Congregation Ezra Bessaroth) and a multimedia presentation by Professor Devin Naar, will bring memories of these Sephardic traditions to life. 
www.EzraBessaroth.Net

Seattle Jewish Event Calendar
http://seattlejewishuniverse.org/

AIRPORT , LOCAL TRIPS, AND KOSHER RESTAURANT DELIVERY! – ELI DUBAN, DRIVER
NOW PROVIDING MOVING AND VAN SERVICE (UP TO 12 PEOPLE)
NOW PROVIDING TOURS OF SEATTLE!

Competitive rates, excellent service.  Contact Eli at 206-771-2670 JRideSeattle@gmail.com


REBBE’S SICHO - NOACH
https://www.chabad.org/therebbe/article_cdo/aid/91945/jewish/Noach-Praying-for-Others.htm ©SichosInEnglish.org

Our Sages relate1 that Noach did not pray for the welfare of humanity before the Flood, unlike Moshe who prayed for the welfare of those who made the Golden Calf.

There is a dispute2 among the rabbis with regard to Noach’s lack of prayer: R. Yehuda concedes that Noach failed to pray like Moshe did, but points out that Moshe beseeched G‑d in the merit of the Patriarchs. Since Noach could not have done so, he cannot be blamed for his failure to pray on behalf of others.

R. Yitzchak, however, maintains that even though he was unable to invoke the merit of the Patriarchs, Noach should nonetheless have beseeched G‑d’s mercy on behalf of the world’s population.

The Torah commands us3 to judge every person favorably, to give every individual the benefit of the doubt. Why then does R. Yitzchak seem to condemn Noach’s behavior, rather than recognizing that Noach lacked people in whose merit he could plead for Divine mercy?

In fact, we can argue that R. Yitzchak agrees that Noach was unable to pray for his generation, because he was lacking individuals on whose merit he could rely. R. Yitzchak is not seeking to indict Noach, however, but rather wanted to be sure that his failure to pray for the welfare of others would not set a precedent for future generations.

R. Yitzchak therefore concludes that it is necessary to portray Noach’s lack of prayer as a flaw — although, in his case, there was nothing else he could have done — for it teaches later generations that all possible means must be used in order to obtain mercy and compassion for one’s fellows.

The statement of R. Yitzchak thus in no way contradicts the command to judge every person favorably, for he too judges Noach favorably, and agrees that he would have had to rely on the merit of others in order to succeed in his prayers. R. Yitzchak merely intended to encourage other individuals always to intercede on behalf of their fellows, although the chances of success may seem remote.

Moreover, if Noach’s failure to pray for the welfare of others had not been discussed, then this itself could have a detrimental effect on Noach, for his behavior, innocent though it was, may have led to the misconduct of others.

There is a lesson here for us all. A person may well do all he can in order to have a beneficial effect on his environment, but fail due to circumstances beyond his control. Such an individual might well think that, since he did all he could, he has no further moral obligation to himself or to others, and can now rest comfortably; the fact that he didn’t succeed is not his fault.

R. Yitzchak therefore teaches us that a person may very well have done as much as he was capable of doing, and is not merely fooling himself into thinking so. Nevertheless, says R. Yitzchak, one cannot make peace with such a situation. He must continue to “beseech mercy for his generation”; failure to do so can well be considered a fault.

Such relentless concern for the welfare of others may well bring G‑d to negate those factors that are causing the untoward situation, for He provides every Jew with the opportunity to successfully seek Divine mercy on behalf of his generation.

Especially so, since the Rambam rules4 that the “Torah guarantees that the Jewish people will ultimately repent at the conclusion of their exile, and will immediately be redeemed.”

Based on Likkutei Sichos, Vol. XXV, pp. 19-22

 

 

 

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