Dvar Torah for Parshat Tazria-Metzora


Based on Likutey Halakhot, Shutfim B'Karka 4:4

'I [God] will place the mark of the leprous curse in houses in the land...the nega [mark] in the wall of the house...the kohein will give orders to remove the stones having the nega
Leviticus 14:34, 37, 40

'A stone cries out from the wall, a beam from the timber answers....Ó
Habaquq 2:11

I was blessed this past Pesach (Passover) with a deep desire for teshuvah (repentance). I used to think that I had had regret for my sins, but now I'm not so sure. On Pesach I regretted my sins to an extent that I never had before. I felt like ripping them out of the wall.

Later that same morning I saw this section in Likutey Halakhot which quotes the above verse: A stone cries out from the wall, a beam from the timber answers. Reb Noson writes that the backbone of keeping oneself in check is remembering that one will have to give a din v'cheshbon (judgement and reckoning) to God. And the walls and furniture of his home will testify to what he has done (Taanit 11a).

I wanted to rip out the eyes of those witnesses. But I can't. Reb Noson asks an obvious question: If the walls and furniture testify, can one get away with a sin in the Great Outdoors? Of course not. For not only will the physical walls of one's home give testimony, but the 'walls of the mindÓ as well. The 'walls of the mindÓ are of paramount importance because even when sitting in one's own home one has to keep the walls intact in order not to even think about sin!

Why do the walls have to be so solid? One function of a wall is to protect the homeowner from viewing unwanted sights. Reb Noson explains that all sin stems ultimately from the abuse/misuse of sight, of seeking niuf, illicit sexual pleasure. 'SightÓ means not only what's in one's field of vision, but what is on the 'mind's eye.Ó

What one thinks about, for good or for evil, is what one sees. I needed to fix the walls of my mind. Instead of ripping out the sticks and stones of my home, I had to rip out some of my thoughts and replace them with something better. Such a task seems quite daunting, but Rebbe Nachman makes home-repair quite simple:

You can only have one thought at a time. So if you think something good, you can't think something else. Rein in your thoughts and think something else (Likutey Moharan II, #53).

Agav oorcha (by the way), I present the piece of Talmud which teaches us that the bricks and beams will testify because it is apropos to current events in the Holy Land.

When the community is suffering, one should not think, 'I'll go home, have something to eat and drink–life is good.Ó...As the battle against Amalek raged, Moshe Rabbeinu grew tired and sat on a rock (Exodus 17:12). Didn't he have a chair or blanket to sit on? 'The Jews are suffering. I will suffer with them.Ó One may think that none will see him if he acts inappropriately in his own home. Not so. The bricks and beams of his house will testify against him, as it says,....
Taanit 11a

agutn Shabbos!
Shabbat Shalom!