REAYE " If there be among you a needy man................within any of your gates... you should not harden your heart..................................(15:7)

Rashi comments that the Torah is teaching us the following: "The poor of your own city have precedence over the poor of another city." (The laws of charity are numerous, please consult an orthodox Rabbi with any questions concerning the proper manner in which Charity should be given.) A question can be asked, Why does the Torah have to teach us that the poor of our city has precedence? Isn't this obvious? Of course a person must first support the poor of his city? What is the Torah trying to teach us? I would like to propose the following original answer , Bezrat Hashem. Its very possible for a person to overlook the poor of his city due to its familiarity. Everything appears so familiar that even the most obvious needy are overlooked. Yet when a person goes to another city everything automatically becomes apparent, its fresh and new. Therefore, the Torah has to wake us up to the obvious.The poor do exist in your city, just open your eyes to their


However, there exists a deeper meaning to what the Torah is trying to tell us concerning ourselves. Its very easy for any person to find fault in others, yet at times its extremely difficult to discover faults in ourselves.

This is precisely the hidden message the Torah is trying to convey to us.We have to somehow open our eyes to the very things that are keeping us back from reaching our spiritual potential even if these very things are not so obvious to us due to our familiarity with ourselves.

Therefore, when the Torah tells us to discover the "poor" of our city, its perhaps referring to finding the "poor" within ourselves, namely the very things that are holding us back spiritually.

Have a good shabbos

This Torah thought is being dedicated to my beloved father , NACHMAN SHIMON ben YEHUDA MEIR HAKOHAN, Z"L


This article is provided as part of Shema Yisrael Torah Network Permission is granted to redistribute electronically or on paper, provided that this notice is included intact.




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