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In Memory of Mr.

Max Glass

Likutei Ohr
Volume IV : Issue X
Ariel Amsellem 15

Senior Editors:

Eitan Meisels 15
Michael Somekh 15

Managing Editors:
Pinchas Gamzo 17
Jesse Hyman 16
Jack Levkowitz 17


Layout Editor:
Eitan Tennenbaum 17
Joshua Aranoff 15
Yosef Hier 16

Eli Friedman 15
Jordan Lustman 15
Nathan Silberberg 16

Staff Advisor:
Rabbi Arye Sufrin

The Flame of
One who performs a
Mitzvah as it is
explicitly stated
receives no evil

- Shabbat 63a

Tefillah Gems

Yosef Petlak 17

In Memory of Mr. Jack Gindi

The Pamphlet of Light

Parshat Vayigash

A publication of YULA Boys High School

Yosef: An Expert in Sensitivity

Rabbi Dov Emerson

Avoiding acts of revenge can be a challenge for many. When someone mistreats me, I feel
an almost visceral urge to get back at that person for what they did. Yet, at the same time, we
understand that not only is revenge a violation of the biblical commandments prohibiting
Nekama, but it is also one of the most distasteful element of human behavior. But what if you
knew that you were in the right? What if you knew that by returning the favor to those who
harmed you, you were teaching them an important lesson? Would everyone not jump at the
chance to take revenge?
As the story of Yosefs descent to Egypt reaches a dramatic climax, we are taught that
Yosef could not remain in the presence of all who stood before him, so he called out Remove
everyone from before me! (Bereshit 45:1). After everyone but the brothers leaves the room, Yosef
reveals his true identity. Rashi seeks to understand exactly why Yosef sent everyone out of the
room. The casual reader might suggest that Yosef simply could not handle the pressure anymore
and needed to reveal his secret. Rashi, however, explains that Yosef could not bear for there to be
Egyptians standing before him and hearing his brothers being shamed when he makes himself
known to them.
Let us consider this unbelievable explanation: Were the brothers worried about Yosefs
feelings when they threw him in a pit and sold him into slavery? If Yosef would have stood up
and shouted his brothers culpability from the rooftops, would anyone have faulted him? And
yet, we see that Yosefs primary concern, even in this moment of painful truth, was his brothers
feelings. What an incredible lesson in sensitivity! He recognized that they would be incredibly
ashamed to stand before him after revealing himself, and he did not want them to suffer the
additional embarrassment of standing in front of his entire court of Egyptians.
Yosefs sterling character is evident in next weeks Parsha as well: The time had
approached for Yisrael (Yaakov) to die, so he called for his son, for Yosef (Bereshit 47:29). A short
time later, Yosef is again alerted that the end is near: Behold, your father is ill (Bereshit 48:1).
Why was Yosef told about his fathers ailing health so many times? Did Yosef really not know
that Yaakovs health was faltering? At this point, Yaakov had lived in Egypt with Yosef for 17
My dear friend and colleague, Rav Andi Yudin, gave a beautiful answer to this question:
The fact that Yaakov lived in Goshen, a place quite far away from Yosefs home in the capital,
was certainly not easy for Yosef, especially after having been away from his father for so many
years. However, he purposely distanced himself from his father because Yosef knew that if they
spent their time in Egypt in close proximity to one another, the subject of How did you end up
in Egypt anyway? would have invariably come up. Yosef would have no choice but to share the
truth about his brothers actions, and it would have caused additional needless embarrassment
and shame to them. Out of sensitivity for his brothers, Yosef remained far away from Yaakov.
While we can learn much from Yosef and his life, this lesson of sensitivity is extremely
significant. Often, we only act kindly to another person if it is convenient for us. Once the act
requires more effort, we decide to not do it anymore even if that comes at the expense of
anothers feelings. May Yosefs truly heroic efforts in the name of sensitivity for others inspire us
to put forth that extra effort when thinking about others.

The prayer of Shmonah Esrei, the pinnacle of our Tefillah, is recited (at least) three times every day. This unique and very
important Tefillah is broken up into three parts. An understanding of each of these parts can enhance ones Shmonah Esrei
experience. The first part of the Amidah, which starts with the first Bracha and ends with the Bracha of HaKel HaKadosh, is the
part of the Amidah in which we praise Hashem. The second part, which lasts from Ata Chonein to Shmah Koleinu, is the time in
which we ask Hashem for certain things that we desire. In the last and maybe most important section, which spans from Ritzei to
HaMevarech Et Amo Yisrael BaShalom, we thank Hashem for all that He does for us. By understanding what each section of
Tefillah means, we should BEzrat Hashem be able to strengthen our Tefilot, which will hopefully lead to us enhancing our
relationship with HaKadosh Baruch Hu.

A Long-Awaited Encounter
Ariel Wernick 17

In this weeks Parsha, Yosef reveals himself to his brothers

and then embraces them. Later on in the Parsha, Yosef meets his
father for the first time in over 20 years his father. The strange
wording that the Torah uses to describe this encounter raises
some questions. The Pasuk reads, Yosef went to meet his father,
got up, appeared to him, fell on his neck and cried
more (Bereshit 46:29). There are two things, which are unclear in
this Pasuk. First, who is the one doing the falling and crying
Yaakov or Yosef? Second, why does the Torah say he (whoever
he is) cried more when it never mentions that he had cried at all?
Rashi answers that it was Yosef who was crying.
Additionally, when the verse says he was crying already, the
Pasuk was really saying that he cried a significant amount. Rashi
cites our sages who teach that Yaakov could not have been the
one who was doing the embracing because he was reciting
The Chizkuni adds that the Torah uses the phrase He was
crying more, to illustrate Yosefs tendency to cry. In fact, he cries
eight times throughout Sefer Bereshit, and when the Torah writes
that he cried more it means he has cried before and continues to
The Ramban writes that it was not respectful of Yosef to
run and fall on his father just as someone would neither run to a
king nor fall on the kings neck. The Ramban explains it was
Yaakov who fell on Yosefs shoulder and cried, which is unlike
Rashis interpretation.
The Ramban also disagrees with Rashis explanation of
the word more in the Pasuk. The Ramban says that when the
Pasuk says more it actuallymeans more. Yaakov was crying for
22 years, which was the same amount of time Yosef was in Egypt
and now Yaakov (not Yosef) cried more. The Ramban proves this
by pointing out that it is morelikelyfor a father to cry after not
seeing his son for 22 years because a fathers love for a son is
greater than love of a son for his father. Additionally, Yaakov
had not known that Yosef was alive, and the surprise made him

More Than a Meeting Among Brothers

Halachic Illuminations

From Rabbi Nachum Sauer

Shnayim Mikrah VEchad Targum is a beautiful
Mitzvah that relates to Torah reading. The Aruch
HaShulchan teaches that it is a Mitzvat Asei ShehaZman
Grama, a positive time related Mitzvah, which must be
performed every week. According to the Aruch
HaShulchan, the precise Mitzvah is to read the weekly
Parsha twice and a Targum, a translation, once. For the
reading of Shnayim Mikrah, one is supposed to recite the
exact Pasukim of the Parsha; for the Targum, however,
there are a couple of different texts that may be used.
The most common text that is used for the Targum is the
Targum Unkelos, which is found on the inside of the page
in most Chumashim. Others say that one can use Rashi
Every man over Bar Mitzvah is obligated in this
Mitzvah even if he does not understand what is being
read, or even if he would prefer to learn other material
such as Gemara. Women, on the other hand, are exempt
from this Mitzvah because they are exempt from the
Mitzvah of learning Torah, and Shnayim Mikrah falls
under that category. Someone who is; Chas VaShalom;
blind, sick, or illiterate is also exempt from the Mitzvah,
but such a person should try to hear it from someone
There are many different ways to perform this
Mitzvah, but the preferred way is to read each Pasuk
individually with its Targum. However, it is also
acceptable to read the entire Parsha and then recite the
Targum. One may read the Parsha along with the Baal
Koreh on Shabbat, and by doing so one has read the
Parsha one time; therefore, he would only need to read
the Pasukim one more time. A person should complete
the Mitzvah by Mincha on the Shabbat of the Parsha. He
can start as early as a week before at Mincha time when
Rishon of the Parsha is read.

Compiled By Noam Gershov 17

Noah Hyman 18

Last weeks Parsha finished with a big cliffhanger: Binyamin had just been caught with with Yosefs missing goblet. Yosef told the
brothers that he would take Binyamin as his slave as punishment for the theft. Yehuda takes charge and risks his life to stop the Egyptian
viceroy, who is actually Yosef, from taking away Binyamin.
Of all the brothers, why was Yehuda the one to take charge? One answer is that Yehuda had learned from the sale of Yosef that
when he talked people listened. In fact, if Yehuda had not spoken up, Yosef may not have been sold. Now, Yehuda hoped to use his power of
speech for the good of saving Binyamin. Yehuda even offers himself in the place of Binyamin, an act that can be viewed as Midah KNeged
Midah, for now Yehuda would feel the same agony that Yosef felt when he faced impending servitude.
Others answer that Yehuda also had personally guaranteed Ya'akov that he would bring back Binyamin. Since his Olam HaBah was
on the line, Yehuda was the first to step up.
The actual dialogue between Yosef and Yehuda is also intriguing. Yehuda opens up the discussion by saying, If you please, my
lord, may your servant speak a word in my lords ears and let not your anger flare up at your servant for you are like Pharaoh (Bereshit
44:18). At face value, the phrase for you are like Pharaoh would seem to be a compliment; after all, Yehuda compares Yosef to the most
powerful figure in Egypt. Rashi, however, teaches that this phrase reminds Yosef that Pharaoh was punished with a horrid skin disease
when he took Sarah. Rashi adds that Yehuda is implying that Yosef was as dishonest and devious as the corrupt leader.
After Yosef asks all his servants to leave the room, he reveals that he is their long lost brother. He then asks if Yaakov is still alive.
After Yosefs revelation, the brothers appear to be at a loss of words. The Chofetz Chaim, however, offers a deeper explanation of these
events. He says that right when Yosef revealed himself, everything that had occurred in the past twenty-two years, in Yosefs absence, fell
into perspective. There was no need for them to say or ask anything, for they now understood everything. The Chofetz Chaim explains that
we will have similar reaction when the revelation of Mashiach occurs. Hopefully, we can experience this clarity speedily in our days!

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