Sunday, February 7, 2010

Shtuff Happens

I was thinking about a specific Rashi for most of the day, and lo and behold I discovered that this very Rashi was in today's Chumash. Basically, I wrote a post a week ago that was meant for a couple of very specific people. Seeing as I got no feedback from that couple I have to assume that they didn't get it (or else didn't even read it, a very real possibility considering the circumstances). Be that as it may, this morning I got an email from someone who assumed that I had been talking about them! They proceeded to say that I had been correct in my assessment of the situation, and they were impressed that I had managed to say what I had to say in such a delicate manner.

Two things struck me about this whole episode. The first was that someone took what I wrote to heart and not only did they not get upset (which they had every right to do) but instead they took the lesson to heart in the most magnanimous way. I was very impressed with this, even though I don't happen to believe that the lesson they assumed needed taking actually needed to be taken, and even though I'm certainly in no position to criticize this person, even if I wanted to, which I don't.

The second thought which struck me was from today's chitas. Rashi quotes the Gemara in Makkos which has a whole thing about how if one person killed intentionally and another unintentionally, and they couldn't (for whatever reason) be prosecuted for their crimes, then G-d arranged for a fitting punishment. He has them meet up at an inn, and the one who killed unintentionally falls on top of the one who murdered, thus killing him, and then the one who killed unintentionally is sent to exile. This fulfills the verse, "Evil comes forth from evil ones".

I was thinking about this because here was someone who thought they should be criticized and they thought I was criticizing them, and it was all accidental- G-d arranged for whatever needed to be said to be said! Of course, this means I'm an evil one. Also, I hope the people I really was referring to don't think this means their innocent.

13 comments:

e said...

The person who thought your words were directed to him or her wasn't either evil, as you wrote that he or she didn't really need your criticism. So if he or she isn't evil, than neither are you.

Very impressive how you managed to discuss this whole topic and not give away this person's sex.

Mendel Rosenfeld, where are you nowadays? said...

simchas Torah 1924, the Frierdiker Rebbe really let it rip and gave the assembled over the head for not being real chasidim. (Ah, that's a farbrengen that a fundy can enjoy reading again and again...)

before beginning his tirade, the Frierdiker Rebbe says that he'll need to speak in general terms, even though he means to point out very specific problems. Said the Rebbe, there are two problems with speaking in general terms: firstly, the intended recipient thinks that you don't mean him; secondly, the intended recipient thinks that you mean the other guy.

The Real Shliach said...

e: A. Relieved I am relieved.

B. I try.

Rosenfeld revealed: I believe you gave the same example here for the two problems? Anyway, here's a video I just saw of the Rebbe, the son in law of the Rebbe, putting someone in his place. Rather disturbing, actually. http://www.rebbeclips.com/2010/02/go-to-din-torah.html

Crawling Axe said...

And then there is a third category: people who knew they needed to hear a rebuke, were looking for a rebuke, but didn't say anything, either before or after the rebuke.

HP is a neat thing. I would say one of the coolest features of Hashem's interface.

The Real Shliach said...

They didn't say anything? Why should they have said anything?

Yes, it's almost as cool as the iPad's interface (does G-d have touch screen capabilities?).

sarabonne said...

Re. arranged punishment: Hm, I should probably avoid walking under ladders, yes?

Crawling Axe said...

Typical thinking of an Apple lover. Quality is judged by presence/lack of a touchscreen.

1. Look here.
2. As the world-famous Russian philosopher, Kuz'ma Prutkov, said: "Look towards the root" ("зри в корень").

Crawling Axe said...

I didn't say the had to say anything. I was just commenting.

the long arm of the lord's judgement said...

sara, you can run but you can't hide!

The Real Shliach said...

Sara: Correct.

CA: Just commenting, eh?

sarabonne said...

Ah...well...cheers then.

le7 said...

When I read this Rashi I couldn't remember where I had heard it before... but duh, from TRS!

The Real Shliach said...

Another proof that a daily dose of TRS is all that's needed to keep the doctors at bay.