Pesach 2011 Newsletter
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Transcript of Pesach 2011 Newsletter
NewsletterHarav C. Z. Levitan Rosh Yeshiva Rabbi Ari Levitan Rabbi Rabbi Dovid Rube Yehuda Russak
Volume IV Pesach 2011
Recent NewsMAZEL TOVThe Rosh Yeshiva & Rebitzin upon the bar mitzvah of their grandson Leibi Levitan, son of Rabbi Abba & Mrs. Levitan. Yossi Ritterman upon his engagement. Dov Yosef (Doyo) Pass upon his engagement. Mr. & Mrs. Zalmy Treitel upon the birth of a son.
Keep us connectedPlease keep us connected with your simchas etc. so that we can include them in future newsletters. In the unfortunate event of a levaya or shiva please notify us so we can inform the oilam.
Yomim Tovim normally stir Jews memories; memories of past Yomim Tovim in their own experience as well as memories of chagim uzmanim lsoson that live only in their imagination. The Neshomos of Klal Yisroel are enveloped in well-worn longing to be allowed once more to celebrate fully our Shalosh Regolim as we solicit Benai baischo kvatchilo. The Yom Tov of Pesach however, seems the most powerful when it comes to our personal nostalgia. The nights of the seder are especially potent in raising sentimental retrospection. As we sit at the table surrounded by sights, smells and sounds we are subconsciously transported to another time, another place, and another world. All the Halochos and Minhagim are designed to leave a lasting imprint on young peoples minds and hearts have done their job well. The exalted hours of the seder night manage to fuse the past and the present into one seamless entity that is magically at once somber and hopeful, dark and illuminating. These moments of special chemistry then become the fabric of the participants future memories. This very unseeming mixture seems to be the mitzvas hayom of the seder itself. The wording of Rambam (Chometz Umatzah 7:6) in describing the responsibility, is to demonstrate or conduct oneself as if he was taken out of Mitzrayim now, at this moment. This is why we behave in ways that demonstrate the bitter slavery and the joyous redemption. Both the melancholy past and the jubilant present are treated at the seder. This contradictory behavior is the point the questions of Ma Nishtanah raise (see Abarbanel). Most children who have unremarkable pasts, have trouble understanding the need to clutter the present with what has been long gone and forgotten. The parent must explain that Klal Yisroel cannot escape its past nor does it want to. The true understanding of geulah is linked to understanding our pasts. Ramban teaches this sophisticated lesson to us in his introduction to Sefer Shemos. The Ramban defines geulah from golus not as a geographical occurrence but a spiritual one. Even after the Exodus from Egyptian slavery, the cloud of avdus lingered over us, until we returned to our place and we returned to maalas avosom. We can outlive the dark night of golus and enter the bright morning of geulah only by clinging to and least brushing our hands across the exalted divinity of our Avos. Given the Rambans definition of golus as living in the absence of shechina and geulah as living in the presence of shechina it is fascinating that the geulah from Mitzrayim began and ended in a similar phrase. The Medrish Rabba (Shmos 3:1) tells us that Hashem responded: I am not your father but I am your fathers G-d, Elokei Avicho. With these words, Moshe is sent to begin the geulah. One cannot help but hear the echo of those words in the shiroh of Moshe Rabbeinu after the splitting of the Yam Suf when he says Elokei avi vaomimenu. Rashi explains: Moshe understood that he was not the origin of the Kedushah, it was endowed to him, inbred from his avos. The bookends of geulah, from start to finish, is this understanding- whatever shechina we sense and are moved by, is because we are our parents children. Any cup of wine we raise to our lips in celebration of any geulah/shechina experience is filled with the wine from our fathers vineyard. This affords us another vantage point of a Mishnah in Tomid (3:2) which describes the preparation for the daily offering of the morning Korbon Tomid.( The identical Mishnah appears in Yoma (3:1) about the Yom Kippur Avodah.) The Kohen in charge asked if daylight was visible. He then asked if the entire Eastern skyline was visible. He finally asked if daylight had reached Chevron. When it was daylight in Chevron, then the daily avodah could begin. The Rav explains, based on Yirushalmi, this was meant to invoke the zechus of the avos buried in Chevron. The omek of this is clear-we recognize on a daily basis that we could not begin any avodas Hashem if not for our avos, who imbued in us this aptitude and capacity for kedushah. This is equally true for any pedestrian weekday, as it is on the holiest of all days, Yom Kippur. On the Yom HaKadosh, one might have thought otherwise, given the transformation that any Yid with a scent of Yiras Shomayim undergoes in such close proximity to HaKodosh Boruch Hu- bheyoso korov. Vulgar man, usually in relentless pursuit of pleasure seeking, assumes an angelic posture on Yom HaKodesh. The kol dodi dofek messages from his neshomo, grant him the strength-just this once-to wisely ignore all the sensuous demands of the never still guf. Today he thinks, I am finally a mentsch; I see clearly; I understand my task; I have conquered. It is towards this unique vanity on the most unique of days, that the appointed kohen delivers his message. Even today, even when we might attribute this gevurah to ourselves- no avodah can begin until daybreak in Chevron. Therefore, we in our attempts to inject some of the maalos avosom of old in our lives, sit at the seder attentively, hoping something will rub off on us, today. Teffilos to the Borei Olam are for the wisdom to recognize the roots of our ruchnius and to make them real and relevant today and thus, pave the way for the geulah of tomorrow. The great day, when we will bask in the same sunlight as the yishainai Chevron, the Avos and their bonim, together. Our job is to absorb, for today and for tomorrow, that special feeling in order to pass it on to the next generation-it will happen sooner than you think, believe me. START PREPARING! With my best wishes for a chag kosher vsomeach for you and your families. With cheeboh yesairoh, lzu [Excerpted from an article printed in Yated Neeman many years ago]
Message from the Rosh Hayeshiva
10 Golar Drive Monsey, NY 10952 P: (800) 636-6776 F: (845) 406-9191 email@example.com
news from around yeshivapURIM
Baruch Hashem this year, the yeshiva and our alumni celebrated Purim together. The first night of Purim, the mesiba was held at the home of Mr. & Mrs. Moshe Schreiber. The Schreiber home is legendary for its chesed and has an open door policy for all functions that promote Torah & chesed. A special thank you to them and to Mr. & Mrs. Dovi Schreiber along with the Monsey alumni committee and their wives for coordinating the beautiful event. The food, drinks and the live D.J combined for an enjoyable and meaningful night. The Purim seuda was hosted by dear friends of the yeshiva, Mr. & Mrs. Kalman Green. Their generosity and willingness to host our Purim seuda and all the various other functions inspire us all. Once again the food, drinks and live D.J created a joyous and lively atmosphere
that was enjoyed by all. A special thank you to the junior Rebitzin Levitan for orchestrating a well organized and festive event. As the sounds of yalili reverberated through the hall, the dancing intensified and we were joined by many members of the Olympia community and the greater Monsey community. The dancing lasted for hours with some breaks in the action for some slow inspirational songs such as the Yeshiva theme song; Lor-d I cant wait. A special thank you to our very own D.J Emes, Mattis Steinberg. You made our Purim an all time great! Honorable mention must be given to the sponsors of the food and drinks (who must be broke by now) whose wish to remain anonymous have been honored.
After Purim, with the intention of rejuvenating the remaining few weeks of the zman, we began to focus on the yom tov of Pesach. The daily halocho shiur began learning hilchos Pesach, and we even switched masechtas for first and second seder to Pesachim. All the shiurim were combined and the entire yeshiva was privileged to hear daily shiurim from the Rosh and all the rabbeim on alternating days. On rosh chodesh Nissan, the last day of the zman we ended with a special breakfast. The Rosh was present and addressed the oilam with warm words of chizuk. He noted how proud he was of the zman and specifically called out two of the boys who have embarked on a mission to finish a masechta. He complimented them for their
undertaking and diligence which has landed them in the Bais Medrash late at night. R Ari initiated a bain hazmanim program to continue learning maseches Pesachim, and to go through the haggodo. All boys that came to shachris and learning were treated to breakfast in Bagels De Lox. A special thank you to R Shlomo Rokowsky & R Pinny Lipshutz for sponsoring the breakfasts. Two of the boys who committed to learning an hour every day of bain hazmanim including Shabbos & Yom Tov were treated to tickets to the final knicks home game of the year. A special thank you to Mutty Friedman & Shummy Reichman for sponsoring the tickets.
10 Golar Drive Monsey, NY 10952 P: (800) 636-6776 F: (845) 406-9191 firstname.lastname@example.org
ALUMNI NEWSBefore pesach, our alumni in Brooklyn requested a shiur on inyonei pesach. R Ari discussed that the matzoh represented both the slavery and the geulah and how the Ribono Shel Olam orchestrated that the very same bread, which on one day reminded them of slavery, can be capable of representing freedom as well. He concluded, that the geula of pesach is not limited to the geula of Mitzrayim and it is the zman that can be c