Home Subscribe Services Support Us
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Ohr Yisrael: Rí Salanterís Letters (31, Part 2)

R' Salanter once again underscores the point that we're to always remember to at least observe those mitzvahs that are easy enough to keep at the moment and to avoid the sins that are easy enough to shun at that point, if nothing else.

This is especially true when it comes to those mitzvahs and sins touching upon our character traits and the things required of us to be law-abiding, moral citizens. While its more difficult to be successful in that realm -- because of all of our hidden motivations and the befuddling number and strength of conflicting commitments -- nonetheless the best way to overcome those sorts of sins is to always keep our "natural love of righteousness and our hate for (moral) distortions" in mind.

For who among us doesn't indeed admire goodness and honesty, even if we ourselves don't always live up to our own visions of it? The gist of the matter is that we're to always keep our inner sense of right and wrong well-tuned and at the forefront, and to strive to live up to them. The other point is to always strive to know our own hearts and to own up to our failings and successes.

For at bottom, R' Salanter asserts, mitzvahs touching on our character traits are in fact chukim (i.e., essentially inexplicable and mysterious, as cited earlier in this letter). And they should be taken as seriously as other such mitzvahs.

This completes our series. May the many merits of R' Salanter stand in our favor for having studied his work, and may we witness the arrival of the Moshiach in our time as a consequence.

Text Copyright © 2010 by Rabbi Yaakov Feldman and

Rabbi Feldman's new book, Bachya Ibn Pakuda's The Duties of the Heart, is now available! Order Now



View Complete List

Earning The Celestial Academy Award
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5774

Miracle VS Miracle: Part One
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5761

Remembering from Whence One Came
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5771

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

Creating a Base to Attach to God
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5773

A Final Solution
Rabbi Label Lam - 5772

Two Types of Perfection
Shlomo Katz - 5769

> Only the Rabbi Works on Shabbos
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5757

Hear Today, Here Tomorrow
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5761

Eliezer -- The Son of Moshe Rabbeinu
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5764

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Rabbi Raymond Beyda - 5766

Positive Pursuits
Rabbi Label Lam - 5764

The Chosen
Shlomo Katz - 5775


The Death Of Humanism
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5762

Recognize the value of others
Rabbi Yisroel Ciner - 5758

A Question of Justice
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5759

With a Single Heart
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5769

Project Genesis Home

Torah Portion

Jewish Law



Learn the Basics




Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base


About Us

Contact Us

Free Book on Geulah! Home Copyright Information