Friday, December 21, 2007

Mei Hashiloach on Why "Binyomin is a Wolf that Tears..."

I saw a fascinating Mei Hashiloach on Parshas Vayechi on the pasuk in Bereishis 49:27, "בִּנְיָמִין זְאֵב יִטְרָף," Binyomin is a wolf that tears." There, he explains that Yaakov is giving a great bracha, blessing, to his son Binyomin, the father of the tribe of Binyomin. He is saying that just as a wolf consumes its prey, the people of Binyomin consume the good from amidst the nations of the world and brings that good into the Jewish nation.

A footnote over there points to another Mei Hashiloach in Parshas Truma, dibur hamaschil "U'mileisa bo," (on Bereishis 28:17) which explains each of the 12 stones of the Kohen Gadol's Choshen Mishpat in light of the meaning of that stone and its relationship to the tribe to which it corresponds. For Shevet Binyomin, he says that the יָשְׁפֵה, the Yashphah stone, corresponds to the tribe of Binyomin because it is a contraction of the words "yesh" and "peh," or "there is to him a mouth." This means, says the Izbitzer, that "he has a mouth to swallow and to receive all good things which are found among the nations, and to gaze at the the good things [about] the nations and to bring them into the Jewish people.

It is interesting. I wonder if Rav Mordechai Yosef of Izbitz connected this teaching to himself. Mordechai was from shevet Binyomin and Yosef was Binyomin's only other brother from their mother, Rochel. I wonder if he saw his own tafkid as, at least to some extent, drawing in the sparks of holiness from among the nations and returning them to their proper place, within the Jewish people. Perhaps Binyomin would be a good name for a ger to take on as well, since he would also be returning kochos that were originally found among the nations, to the Jewish people.

May we all merit to find and fulfill our tachlis in life!

-Dixie Yid

(Picture courtesy of LMSonline.org)

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6 comments:

Anonymous said...

I love Ishbitz-esp. om Korach and Zimri.

Chaim B. said...

Where do we see this behavior exemplified by Binyamin (excluding Mordechai in Meg Esther)?

P.S. Keep up the Ishbitz torah!

DixieYid said...

His stuff on Zimri & Kozbi is crazy... Another example of mind-bending Torah. Wow.

Chaim,

Good question. I'll have to think about it but the whole Torah on that fascinated me. Thanks for the chizuk!

-Dixie Yid

Anonymous said...

Zimri and Kozby isn't crazy is major yesodosdik many litivish sources and chasidish sources from Rav Wolbe to Mei HaShiloach that even reshaim in Torah made a taus, often major taus in cheshbon but were not stam prust, etc.

Chaim B. said...

>>>His stuff on Zimri & Kozbi is crazy

The Shem m'Shmuel has the same yesod in many places.

DixieYid said...

anon & chaim,

Just so I'm not misunderstood, I don't use the word "crazy" in a critical way, as if it were even shiach for me to criticize the Izbitzer. I use it as if to say "amazing and mind-bending!"

I didn't know about the Shem Mishmuel. I think that it's the gemara in Sota that talks about Yael being greater than "nashim ba'ohel," and aveira lishma. Probably a related yesod.

-Dixie Yid