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January 26, 2015 / 6 Shevat, 5775
 
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Remembering Shabbos


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Thus it once was that the students of Hillel and the students of Shammai were split over a particular aspect of a mikva. For a long time they disputed, each one giving his reasons and trying to prove his point to the other.

They were unable to resolve the dispute and the rabbis were at a loss how to act. Should they rule according to Hille or according to Shammai? There were simply no clear-cut answers.

Finally, as they were puzzling over it they were surprised to see that a group of weavers, among the poorest and most ignorant of the people of Yerushalayim came before them.

“We have heard of the dispute,” they said, “and we would like to say tha we have a definite tradition from the great Shmaya and Avtalyon that the law is like neither Hillel now Shammai but such and such.”

When the rabbis heard the tradition they immediately overruled both and Hillel and Shammai are ruled like the weavers.

Thus, the honor of Torah took precedence over even the two greats, Hillel and Shammai.

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“What could I do? Your wife is hard of hearing,” whispered the poor woman barely able to talk.

“I would appreciate if you could give me some pointers on how to improve my wine,” said the wine merchant eagerly.

“And what was your grandfather’s name?” asked the visitor. “The same as my name,” replied the child.

The trial was the next day and he hadn’t as yet told the family what he would do.

The man was overjoyed to see his benefactor and gave them food and water besides shelter and safety.

Because of this I wandered about and found friends in similar situations who were also unhappy and I began to hang out with them.

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