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Saturday, May 7, 2016

Parshat Shavua Kedoshim, My Father, Mehadrin in Yosher, Honesty

Sidney Spiegelman, Z"L, 1920-2016
On one hand it seems rather ironic to refer to my very secular father as "mehadrin," (most stringent religious/Torah observance) but while reading the Torah Portion of this week on Shabbat, I was struck by how carefully he followed and revered some of the mitzvot included in this week's Parsha, Kedoshim, Leviticus 19:1–20:27.

My father could never tolerate any form of dishonesty, cheating. He was horrified when I told him that I was becoming religious, keeping Shabbat, Kashrut etc.
"My daughter is not going to be a ganiff, cheat/thief" he shouted.
I asked him how being religious would make me a thief.
"When I started as an accountant, I worked for the New York State Insurance Fund, and every time I went into a business owned/run by Orthodox Jews, there was something crooked about their business."
So I immediately promised to continue to be straight and honest, but I'd still observe the other mitzvot, like Shabbat and Kashrut.

And since we have no real proof as how Gd weighs our mitzvot, it may be that my father's yosher, honesty and caring for other people will be valued more than those who were mehadrin about their food but traif in how they handled money and business.


sheldan said...

Whenever I read today about religious Jews who are stringent about the mitzvot between man and G-d but abuse the mitzvot between man and man, it really gets me upset. Somehow this is not the way it should be. To me this is hypocritical and gives religious Jews a bad name. I wonder if they really see themselves as they really are...

Batya Medad said...

It's not something new, unfortunately.
Proper repentance/teshuva is almost impossible for the sins between man and his fellow man.