Delray Orthodox Synagogue
DELRAY ORTHODOX SYNAGOGUE
"A Jewel of a Shul"
7319 W. ATLANTIC AVENUE
DELRAY BEACH, FLORIDA 33446
RABBI MENACHEM JAROSLAWICZ
HARRY LAZARUS, PRESIDENT
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This week’s Parsha, Parshas Noach, begins by seemingly telling us the stature, righteousness and high moral standards of Noach. “Noach, a righteous man, whole, in his generation.” Apparently, a spiritual icon in his generation. And, yet, Rashi tells us that there are those who chose to interpret his description, "l’genai," as a negative aspect of his character. Rather than being complimentary, the Pasuk is saying: "Sure, in HIS generation he might have been seen as a great man. However, had he lived in the time of our father Abraham, he would have been totally insignificant."
I don't get it. Why would anyone say that? The Torah itself tells us "VeNoach Matzah Chein B'einai Hashem," and Noach found favor in the eyes of Hashem. And, at the beginning of this week’s Parsha, the Torah refers to Noach as a, "Tzadik; Tamim," (a "Complete & Righteous" person). If it is possible to view him in good favor, why should anyone interpret the situation negatively?
Rabbi Yechezkail from Kumar explained this problem as follows. He says, "Do you want to know how to determine if a person is a true Tzadik, Righteous and Complete? The telltale barometer is if there are those who speak of him with negativity. If EVERYBODY only has nice things to say about the individual, that is a sign that he tends to lie, and compromise himself and his beliefs to achieve positive accolades."
While a Rov or a leader has a responsibility to maintain “Sholom” amongst his congregants, it is impossible to satisfy everybody 100% of the time. It just can't be done. There are bound to be times where one or more persons will disagree with or take issue with a P’sak (Halachic ruling), a decision, or a position taken by the Rabbi on behalf of the Shul. It's a way of life, it's a part of life, and it is to be expected. It is not a question of "IF"; it’s a question of "WHEN." And, of course, those who disagree are entitled to their opinion as is anyone else. What and how they choose to act on their disagreement will in turn determine THEIR character and show THEIR true colors. We have all been there. You win some, you lose some. That's just the way it is.
This invaluable LIFE LESSON is taught to us thousands of years ago by the Torah, Rashi, and the other commentators.
In light of what we just said, it gives me tremendous pride and joy to thank all of our members who were here for the most amazing Yom Tov that we enjoyed together. NO fights, NO arguments, NO badmouthing or complaining. A true SIMCHADIK Yom Tov experience -- the likes of which will be remembered for a long time to come.
G-d willing, we generated enough Avodah and Simcha to guard ALL of us from any pains, harm and discomforts encroaching upon us in the coming year. May we ALL merit to sing and dance together this year in Yerushalayim Ir Hakodesh, together with all of our fellow Jewish brothers and sisters, while greeting the Moshiach upon his arrival in 5775, Amen.
Have a GREAT Shabbos
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