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Thought for the Day: Aseres HaDibros -- Instructions for Eternity

I have had many conversations with my children.  I said many, many things that should not have been said.  I am also confident that there conversations I should have had, but didn't.  There is one conversation that I didn't have, however, that I am confident that there will be no complaint against me in heaven.  Here's the conversation that I didn't have with any of my children:
Thank you, dear child, for meeting with me today.  You are going out into the world soon and I feel an urgent need to give you my feelings on certain matters.  I appreciate that you prepared, as I asked, and have come today with all due seriousness to have this life critical conversation.  My dear child, I do not want you to be a murderer.
I did not have that conversation because it never in my wildest imagination even occurred to me  that I needed to have that conversation.  I mean, if a parent needs to have that conversation, perhaps there are other conversation and/or interventions that need to happen.

Yet, that's precisely what seems to have happened at Har Sinai.  The Creator/Author of reality invited His treasured nation to prepare for three days for the meeting that will determine whether reality will continue to exist.  Moshe Rabeinu running back and forth with messages and replies in preparation and anticipation.  Finally the moment arrives and the Ein Sof -- using the title "Elokim" (midas haDin) to emphasize that this is not philosophy, this is serious business that carries with it severe punishment for non-compliance -- proceeds to tell them, "Thou Shalt Not Murder!"

Rashi tells us that the entire Aseres haDibros was said with one dibur, then HaShem repeated them one at a time with explanation.  The Targum Yonason expands to say that besides the obvious exhortation and injunction, each actually meant to foster a society built on the positives in such a way that the negatives couldn't even happen.  The S'porno says that each dibur included all of it's "toldos"; murder includes embarrassing someone in public, stealing includes delaying payment, adultery includes not averting your eyes from breaches in tznius.

From the S'porno we see that embarrassers will be tried along with the murders, from the Targum Yonasan we see that not doing everything you can to prevent lashon hara will also get your tried with the murderers.  From Rashi we see that none of this will be a suprise; it was all explained.  Since, as Chazal tell us, each of our neshamos were there... we all individually and collectively signed up with a resounding "na'aseh v'nishma".

Seems like a lot?  Infinite reward doesn't come cheap.


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