Parshas Vayegash:
By: Yaacov Silverstein
e@mail: hm16@popeye.cc.biu.ac.il
Pasuk (44:18)

The Parsha starts off with stating that Yehudah came close to Yosef , as it states in the first Pasuk, "Vayegash Aylav Yehudah Vayomar Be Adonee..."

The notes for the first 6 words are as follows;

"Kadmah, Veh-Azlah, Reviyi, Zarkah, Munach, Segol"

The Gra"h in his Sefer Kol Eliyahu, writes that in Parshas Miketz, Yehudah told Yakov, that if he will not return Benyamin, "I have sinned to you all the days".

On this the Medrash explains that "all of the days", means that he is giving up his Olam Habah if Benyamin doesn't return.

Comes along the Gra"h, and says, this is what is hinted in the notes (Trup).

Why didn't Reuvein come forward to Yosef, why Yehudah?

So he answers that

"Kadmah Veh Azlah" = Yehudah got up and went forward.

"Reviyi" = The fourth brother.


Because of

"Zarkah Munach Segol" = He threw himself out of being placed within the "Am Segulah"

Answers the Gra"h, that Yehudah was the one that went forward and not Reuvein because he judged himself out of The World To Come, in a situation where he would not return Benyamin to his father. Therefore he was the one who went forward.

Pasuk (46:29)

Rashi explains on this Pasuk, that when it is written in the Pasuk "Vayeireh Aylav", it means Yosef appeared to his father.

The Ramban asks on Rashi, don't we already know from the Pasuk that Yosef appeared to his father? Why does Rashi repeat this?

Answers Reb Leib Chasman z"tl, that Yosef couldn't wait to see his father, after not seeing him for the past 22 years. Also, by Yakov we see that he also couldn't wait to see his son Yosef, even to the point that he says "Amutah Hapaam Acharei Reosi Ehs Panehcha, Ki Oadcha Chai".

Even though each one had a great wanting to see each other, when they actually met, Yosef was able to conquer his own physical desires of seeing his father, to satisfy his inner happiness, and he did everything for his fathers honor, and not his own.

Therefore Rashi explains that Yosef appeared to his father, not for his desire to see his father, yet for his father to see him. In order for his Kibud Av to be complete. (Sefer Shay L'Torah)

We can tie this in with another explanation, that Rashi explains that when Yakov met Yosef he was in middle of reading Kerias Shema, therefore he did not fall on Yosef's shoulders, yet Yosef fell on his.

Why didn't Yosef read Kerias Shema?

So the Sifse Chachamim comes and explains, one who is occupied in a Mitzvah is Patur from other Mitzvos.

We can learn a very important lesson from the way Yakov and Yosef acted upon seeing their wishes come true. For 22 years they both had one hope, to see each other. Now, that they finally meet each other, and what do they each do?

They take that precious moment of enjoyment, that one could only imagine their Simcha, and they devote it all to serving Hashem.

Many times in our lives, more often than once in 20 years, we feel some sort of inspiration, after we go through different stages in our lives. May we all be Zoche to take these moments and preserve them as a continuous helper in serving Hashem better with, "Bchol Levavecha = all our heart".

To end the Dvar Torah, I would like to add something that I read recently:

Q. One Chassid of Kotz asked another, "How do you define what a Chassid is?"

A. "A Chassid is anyone who wishes to become a Chasid," the other answered.

Q. "But then, who would not wish to become a chasid?"

A. "Someone who thanks he already is a Chasid."

We see from the above that  if one is in the  pursuit of  holiness and is in the search of spirituality, he/she is on the right track.
However, if one thinks that he has already become holy and has already achieved spirituality, then one has already lost it.
(Rabbi J. Twerski - Not Just Stories, published by Mesorah Publications)
Yakov Avinu was always in the pursuit of obtaining more holiness and spirituality, especially at those special moments.

Kerias Shema:

Does one have to have Kavanah when one reads Kerias Shema?

There are 2 types of Kavanah by a Mitzvah.

1) Kavanah in the heart to do the Mitzvah itself, (meaning, on the words that come out of his mouth). And he should not have any other thoughts in his mind.

2) Kavanah to fulfill the Mitzvah, as Hashem commanded.

When we are dealing with the Mitzvah of Kerias Shema, one must have both Kavanos, at least when reciting the first Pasuk, since this deals with excepting of "Ohl Malchus Shamayim". This is a requirement from the Torah.

I f one forgot to have these special Kavanos,

Yet L'chatchila, one should definitely have Kavanah before reciting the Kerias Shema, that he is reciting it in order to be Yotzay, and he should think of, understand, and take to heart what he is reading. (M.B. o.c. 60:10)
Shabbat Shalom !!