Thursday, June 4, 2015

Thursday's Parsha Tidbits - Parshas Behalosecha

The following is a brief summary of some of the thoughts said over by R' Frand on the parsha. I have attempted to reproduce these vorts to the best of my ability. Any perceived inconsistency is the result of my efforts to transcribe the shiur and should not be attributed to R' Frand. 

In Bamidbar 11:4-5, the Torah describes how the Eruv Rav complained about how they were not eating meat while they were in the desert. They then made reference to fish and specific vegetables which they recalled eating in Egypt. Rashi explains that the complainers were not actually complaining about their lack of vegetables in their diet. Instead, these people were complaining that there were no laws which governed intimate relations and that they were nostalgic for the tumah of Egypt.

R' Frand quoted R' Yaakov Kaminetsky who asked - where did Chazal learn this from? What was written in the pesukim which would allow them to derive this thought? He answered that the same way that there is a concept of Pardes in learning Chumash, there is a similar concept in observing people - there is a Pshat, a Remez, a Derash and a Sod. At times a person will say something or be upset about it, but will not really be upset about the issue. Indeed, there was no reason for them to be upset about not having onions - the manna could be whatever they wished it to be - onion rings, fried onions or any other variety. Instead, they were complaining about something that they could no longer partake in which they used to do in Egypt.

R' Frand then tied this into another vort said by R' Yaakov about the story of Lot and Avraham. Lot tells Avraham in Lech Lecha that he wanted to travel and settle in Sodom because of its lush valleys. But Rashi learns that Lot did not crave the lush valley, it was his desire for living in a land where there was no morality which drew Lot to Sodom. Again, the question can be asked - where do we see this in the pesukim? R' Kaminetsky explains that Chazal were able to understand the meaning behind the words as Lot had succeeded because of his proximity to Avraham and he did not need the valleys to grow his flock.

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