Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
 
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Guard Your Lips I

By Rabbi Daniel Travis

...And Lavan returned to his place; and Yaakov went on his way... (Bereshith 31:55, 32:1)

For many years, Yaakov had, out of necessity, employed cunning strategy in his dealings with Lavan. Nevertheless, the moment he left, he immediately reverted to the absolute honesty that was his natural characteristic. This can be gathered from the Torah's words, "And Yaakov went on his way."1

It was no small feat for Yaakov to walk away from a two-decade sojourn with Lavan, totally uninfluenced by Lavan's wiles. Dealing with crooked people, on any level and to any degree, holds untold potential for harm to one's spiritual well-being. When someone is less than honest and fair with us, and we are forced to respond in kind, we must take extreme care that this behavior does not infiltrate our personality. Yet how do we accomplish this? How can one emerge unscathed from a situation in which one had to deal with or live among crooked people?

If we find ourselves unable to avoid such a situation, we should devote some time exclusively to studying the subject of the importance of truth, thereby strengthening it within ourselves, so that the falsehood to which we have been exposed will find no safe haven in our souls. We learn this strategy from King Dovid himself, for after he had to feign insanity in order to save himself from his son Avshalom, he composed Psalm 34, which stresses pure, fair, true and exalted speech.2 In this psalm, King Dovid warned that just avoiding falsehood is not sufficient; if we desire a quality life in the truest form, we must guard our lips from any type of prohibited speech. This involves knowing which types of speech are in fact prohibited, and learning all the halachoth that apply. Making it a practice to study the laws of permissible speech on a regular basis is invaluable in helping one to respond properly in the many complicated circumstances that are bound to present themselves in our lives.3


1. Meshech Chochmah.

2. Heard in the name of Rav Matisyahu Solomon.

3. Chofetz Chaim, Chovoth HaShemirah.


Priceless Integrity, Copyright © 2001 by Rabbi Daniel Travis and Torah.org.

Subscribe to Priceless Integrity and receive the class via e-mail.


 






ARTICLES ON VAYEITZEI AND CHANUKAH:

View Complete List

Analyzing The Imagery of A Familiar Chanukah Poem
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5765

Accompanying Angles
Shlomo Katz - 5759

A New Role
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5772

Looking for a Chavrusah?

G-d Willing!
Shlomo Katz - 5762

The Best Credentials
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5774

Interpreting Dreams
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5771

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

The Blessing Emerges From Lowliness
- 5769

Rachel's Sacrifice
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5760

Whats Holy?!
Rabbi Label Lam - 5774

ArtScroll

Physical or Spiritual - Who's In Control?
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5759

Performances and Customs
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5755

How to Affect Your Enviroment
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5755

> In All Honesty
Rabbi Dovid Green - 5761

Chanukah, Chutzpah, and Coming Close to G-d
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5757

How Are You Doing?
Rabbi Raymond Beyda - 5765

Chanaukah Lights
Shlomo Katz - 5765



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information