Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
  Page title
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Too Much to Bear

The Shulchan Aruch was written as a halachic guide and generally does not describe the severity of transgressions. Yet with regards to someone who talks during the chazaras hashatz, the Shulchan Aruch reveals that his sin is “too much to bear” (124,7). Why did the Shulchan Aruch make an exception for this halacha, and why is talking during chazaras hashatz referred to in such strong terms?

The source of this phrase is found at the beginning of Bereishis. After Kayin killed his brother Hevel, he was cursed by Hashem, banished from his home, and sentenced to wander the earth for the rest of his life. In response Kayin said that the punishment was “too much to bear” (Bereishis 4,13).

Halachic authorities write that the punishment for talking in shul is that the shul will be destroyed (Mishna Berura 124,27). A few hundred years ago there was an outbreak of massacres against the Jews of Europe. Rav Lipman, the author of the Tosfos Yom Tov, attributed these killings to the fact that Jews spoke in shul.

Man is created in Hashem’s image and has a neshama, which is a part of Hashem Himself. As long as man is alive, Hashem dwells in this world. Killing another Jew is tantamount to banishing Hashem from this world.

Similarly, every shul is a miniature Beis Hamikdash, and is a dwelling place for the Shechina. As long as we maintain an attitude of respect and awe, the Divine Presence will dwell there. Talking in shul is tantamount to banishing Hashem from this world.

The Zohar writes that Hashem created this world in order that He should be able to dwell amongst man. Killing others and talking in shul share a similar outcome: we drive the Divine Presence from this world. Acting in a way contradictory to Hashem’s desires in creating the world is “too much for Him to bear.”

During the repetition of Shemoneh Esrei we might feel the urge to talk.

Keeping in mind the severity of this transgression can inspire us to try to keep quiet and listen.


Text Copyright © 2011 by Rabbi Daniel Travis and Torah.org


 

ARTICLES ON KI SAVO AND ELUL / ROSH HASHANAH:

View Complete List

Showing Spiritual Maturity After 40 Years
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5769

Get the Merchandise
Rabbi Label Lam - 5767

A Right to Repent? - Part 2
Shlomo Katz - 5771

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

The Bond that Ties - Prayer
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5756

Shofar - Past and Present
Rabbi Yisroel Ciner - 5762

The Epitome of G-d's Kindness
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5755

Looking for a Chavrusah?

A Welcome Houseguest
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5759

Knock, Knock!
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5757

His Story
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5764

> The Mystery
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5765

"Rational Lies1: Idol Worship & Juicy Rationalizations"
Jon Erlbaum - 0

The Spark is There
Rabbi Label Lam - 5768

ArtScroll

So It Is Written
Rabbi Label Lam - 5765

The Kohain Connection
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5774

The Art of the Deal and It's Impact
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5758

It's a Mitzvah to Be Happy
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5762



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information