Monday, July 26, 2010

Monday's Musings on Sports - The Hall of Fame Does Not Want Who?

As regular readers of this blog are aware, the Monday post was usually devoted to sports with highlights and analysis of the Max Kellerman show which formerly aired on 1050 ESPN Radio. Although Max resigned from 1050 more than a year ago, I have tried to continue the tradition of linking sports to Torah which I believe was an undercurrent of the Max Kellerman show.

While driving down from camp, I heard a great discussion on the Mike & Mike in the Morning Show about the Hall of Fame. This past weekend (besides being visiting day weekend in many Jewish sleep away camps) was also Hall of Fame Induction weekend at the Baseball Hall of Fame. As such, the annual debate over whether steroid users should be inducted into the Hall of Fame raised its ugly head again.

The impetus for the discussion on the radio program was the final segment of Sunday's "The Sports Reporters" TV program which ended with Pedro Gomez stating that members of the Hall had been reaching out to voters to ask them not to vote steroid users into the Hall of Fame.

While people feel strongly about whether steroid users should be allowed into the Hall of Fame, the discussion on the Mike & Mike program took an interesting turn as the guys talked about whether these players would be elected to the Hall by those who would be voting ten to fifteen years from now. There was a feeling by some guests that eventually there will be steroid users in the Hall of Fame, while others felt that the baseball purists would prevent those who achieved their gaudy numbers by unnatural means from joining the Hall.

The discussion about the use of steroids and its unnatural muscular additions reminded me of a mashal (parable) said over by the Dubna Maggid about the Torah's commandment not to add mitzvos (Ba'al Tosif).

The commandment not to add mitzvos in a way is counter intuitive. It is understandable that the Torah bars someone from reducing the number of mitzvos, but why can't a person add commandments to the Torah?

The Dubna Maggid explained by way of the following mashal. A father whose daughter would soon be married wanted to give his future son in law presents. The father of the groom told him, just make two suits and it will be enough. The father of the bride argued with him and said that he wanted to make three suits. The father of the groom tried to persuade him to allow for three suits, but the father of the bride was steadfast.

After the discussion concluded, the groom asked his father why he would not allow the father of the bride to make three suits. The father replied - I know that he is poor and that he has allocated the funds that he has to make the suits. If he makes three suits they will be of lesser quality. You are better off with two suits of decent quality.

The nimshal is that Hashem created the human body with the capacity to perform a finite number of mitzvos. If the person pushes his body to do more mitzvos than the 613 in the Torah, both the additional mitzvos and the original 613 will suffer. As such, Hashem would prefer that a person do the prescribed mitzvos well and not add new mitzvos which will take away from their capacity to properly perform.
If you have seen this post being carried on another site such as JBlog, please feel free to click here to find other articles on the kosherbeers blogsite. Hey its free and you can push my counter numbers up

No comments: