A Twist of the Tongue: Beraishis


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The Chafetz Chaim once said that loshon hora is more power-ful than a sword; a sword can strike only those within arm's reachbut loshon hora can injure a person on the other side of theworld. Reputations can be ruined, marriages destroyed, friend-Ships broken, businesses bankrupted, all because of carelessspeech.In A Twist of the Tongue, Rabbi Oppen develops a themeregarding one of the many aspects of Shemiras Halashon based'on the events recorded in each Parshah. This theme is thensupported by stories from the Gemara orMedrash, from the livesof our sages in recent times and from the everyday experiences ofpeople in every walk of life. In some instances, names and detailshave been altered to avoid identifying the people involved.The purpose of A Twist of the Tongue is to provide storiesrelated to loshon Nora for each Shabbos so that we can remindourselves weekly of the dreadful consequences of loshon Noraand reinforce our resolve to avoid it; it is to demonstrate whatawesome power there lies in a simple "twist of the tongue."Hopefully, this constant awareness can be especially effective,since most people do not speak loshon hora with premeditatedmalicious intent but out of the desire for attention or simplecarelessness. In such cases, a weekly reading about the impor-tance of careful speech can go a long way towards curbing theincidence of loshon hora.

The Chafetz Chaim once said that loshon hora is more power.

Author:Menachem Moshe Oppen
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