Toras Avigdor Junior
Holy Rocks and Holy Cows
French Hill, Yerushalayim
As Shimmy and Yitzy walked out of shul after Mincha, they saw something they had never seen before. A man wearing a tallis and two pairs of tefillin was standing by a table with a big sign that said “HaSegulot Shel Tzadok Hatzadik”. The table was covered with all sorts of interesting-looking things that they had never seen before. There were little stones, red strings, and golden chains.
As soon as the man saw them, he called out to them.
“Hi, kids!” he said. “I’m Tzadok the Tzadik! Come and buy some holy kabbalah segulot! These rocks here are from Har Sinai and if you put one in your pocket, it will keep you from ever doing any aveiros! These red string bracelets make it impossible for you to speak loshon hora, and if you wear one of these gold chains around your neck, you will get a 100% on every Gemara test without even studying!”
Just then Totty came out of shul. “Boys, are you ready to go home?” he called out.
“Totty,” said Shimmy. “Can we please get Har Sinai rocks? That tzaddik over there is selling them and he says they keep you from doing aveiros.”
“Yeah,” added Yitzy. “And I NEED one of those gold necklaces to help me pass my next Gemara test!”
“Don’t be silly, boys,” admonished Totty. “We don’t need to buy any of that garbage.”
“Garbage?” the two boys said simultaneously, shocked looks on their faces.
“Totty,” said Shimmy very seriously. “The tzadik said that anyone who wears those red bracelets will never ever say a word of loshon hora! Didn’t you say that’s one of the worst aveiros a Yid could do?”
“And didn’t you tell us that you always daven that we should be tzadikim?” added Yitzy. “If we get the Har Sinai rocks then we’ll automatically be tzadikim and you won’t have to worry about it, because we’ll never do aveiros again!”
Totty held up both hands as if to say “enough”, and both boys respectfully stopped talking. Totty then put his arms around his two sons and started walking with them down the sidewalk, away from the “interesting” man and towards their house.
“Boys, I want you to listen to me,” he said. “This week’s parsha is Parshas Chukas. Do you know what the parsha starts off with?”
“Parah Adumah?” asked Shimmy.
“Exactly,” said Totty. “And do you know what type of mitzvah Parah Adumah is?”
“A hard Mitzvah,” said Shimmy. “Because it’s not easy to find a red cow without two black hairs!”
“It’s also a ‘Chok’, right?”, added Yitzy. “A mitzvah that we are not given a reason for.”
“You’re both right,” said Totty warmly, “I want to focus on the ‘chok’ part of it for a minute. You see, the Torah says something very interesting by Parah Aduma. The Parsha starts off ‘זֹאת חֻקַּת התּוֹרָה – this is the “chok” of the Torah’. Now what does the Torah mean by this? It doesn’t say this by any other mitzvah, even by the other chukim.
“You see, the Parah Aduma is metaher a Yid from the strongest possible tumah, tumas meis. If someone touches a dead body, they can’t just go to a mikvah to become tahor. Such strong tumah can only be removed by the Parah Adumah. You can wear as many kabbalah necklaces as you want, and toivel in a thousand mikvahs but unless you follow the process of Parah Adumah as explained in our parsha, you’ll still be tamei.
“So Rav Avigdor Miller explains that this is the lesson of the Torah here, “Zos chukas haTorah – only this is the rule of the Torah”, there is only one way for a Yid to be tahor, by listening to the words of Hashem, and following his rules.”
Shimmy looked confused “But Tzadok said these rocks are from Har Sinai!” he said. “They must be special rocks that will help us do Mitzvos if they come from such a holy place.”
Totty smiled. “By Maamad Har Sinai, Hashem didn’t tell Moshe to pick up rocks and give them to the Am Yisroel. Hashem gave us the Torah and said that we have to keep everything it says there. There is no special rock or chain that will magically make you a tzadik without having to fight your Yetzer Hora; or to become a Talmid Chochom without having to shteig. The only way to succeed in this world is by working on ourselves and doing Hashem’s Mitzvos.”
Have A Wonderful Shabbos!
… Just then the loud sound of a police siren was heard, as a police car drove up to the shul. Two policemen got out with handcuffs and started arresting “Tzadok Hatzadik”.