Tuesday, June 17, 2008

“In Holiness, There Are No Questions…”

Once a certain person had a single cow with which he made his living. A very great mitzvah was presented to him that demanded an investment of money and he wasn’t sure what to do. Perhaps he should he sell his precious cow to fulfill the mitzvah? On the other hand, how could he sell his only source of livelihood?

The poor man brought this dilemma before the famous Rav Elimelech of Lizensk, zt”l. After hearing the question, Rav Elimelech immediately proclaimed, “You should not sell your cow.”

The man protested, “But Rebbe, the same mitvah once came your way and you sold your cow. Why am I different?”

Rav Elimelech shot back, “Unlike you, I didn’t ask!”

Rav Elimelech worked on his trust in Hashem to such an extent that he had the necessary inner strength to act with self-sacrifice without a need to ask any shailah. The opportunity to fulfill the mitzvah came, and he did whatever he could to fulfill it, without any hesitations.

The Aryeh Sha’ag, zt”l, said, “It is possible to learn this from Nazir 9. The Gemara states, ‘Ein sh’eilah b’hekdesh.’ Although this literally means that one who consecrates a sacrifice may not nullify this by post-facto regret, this can be read another way. ‘There are no questions regarding hekdesh.’ If someone questions the advisability of doing a holy deed that extends beyond their basic obligations, they are not holding by doing that mitzvah!”

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