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The Parshah begins with Yosef’s 2 dreams, the one with wheat and the one with stars. The idea of both dreams is the same. Later in Parshas Mikeitz, we also have 2 dreams, however, it is Paroh doing the dreaming. Also, very similar dreams, one with wheat and one with cows. When Yosef is interpreting Paroh’s dreams, he explains, that the reason it was 2 dreams, is because the dreams outcome will happen quickly. There is a problem with this, as in our Parshah, Yosef has 2 dreams with the same connotation, and it took 22 years for the dreams fulfillment?


The answer would be, that the 2 dreams that Yosef had, were not about the same thing. After the first of Yosef’s dreams, the Pasuk says 37:8 (וַיּוֹסִפוּ עוֹד שְׂנֹא אֹתוֹ, עַל-חֲלֹמֹתָיו וְעַל-דְּבָרָיו). The brothers had hatred to Yosef after the dream. After the second dream, the Pasuk says, 37:11(וַיְקַנְאוּ-בוֹ, אֶחָיו; וְאָבִיו, שָׁמַר אֶת-הַדָּבָר). That the brothers had a jealousy towards Yosef. So there must be a different meaning between the 2 dreams. The first dream has to do with wheat. Wheat is symbolic of Gashmiyus. The first dream had to do with the brothers bowing down to Yosef over a Gashmiyus matter. The second dream regarding the stars, Shemesh, V’yareiach, is attributed to Ruchniyus. The truth is, this is exactly what happened; they bowed to him when they thought he was the ruler ofEgypt, which was purely for the wheat (Gashmiyus). The brothers hated him for that. When they came to Mitzrayim when they already knew who he was, then they bowed for Ruchniyos, which they were Mekaneh him for. So we see that they were 2 separate dreams. That is why it is not shver that the dreams fulfillment didn’t happen quickly.


Now further on in the Parshah, we find that the brothers want to kill Yosef, then Reuven’s plea not to kill Yosef, instead to throw Yosef into the Bor (pit). The Gemara says Mayim Ein Boi Aval Nechashim V’acrabim Yeish Boi. So Lechoyrah, they were going to kill him anyway?


The Ohr Hachayim Hakadoish says a Teretz, and in the Griz Al Hatoirah there is the same Teretz, however, it is attributed to the Brisker Rav. There are 2 yesoidois in Yiddishkeit that contradict each other. One is that a person can’t get hurt in this world unless it is Bashert, meaning it must be decreed by Shamayim. The second Yesoid is that human beings have free will, and when it comes to Mitzvois and Maisim Toivim and Chas V’shalom Maasim Roim we get to choose if we do those things or not and there is no decree from Shamayim regarding it. If so, we have a contradiction.


If Reuvein picks up a gun to kill Shimon, at that moment, is it decreed from Shamayim that Shimon is going to die? Or does Reuven have Bechirah, meaning Reuven doesn’t have to pull the trigger. The Rishoinim argue about this in a very significant way. The Rambam writes in Moireh N’vuchim, that it is impossible for someone to get killed unless it is decreed by Shamayim that he should be killed. He brings from Nach when Dovid was running away and Shimi Ben Gaira was Mevayeish him. Dovid said, Hashem Omer Loi Kallel. Meaning that it was Min Hashamayim that Shimi should be Mevayeish him. So if it wasn’t Bechirah for Shimi Ben Geira, why was he punished?


It was Min Hashamayim that Dovid should have a certain amount of Tzar, however, it wasn’t decreed that Shimi Ben Geira was supposed to be the one who brought Dovid that Tzar. So Reuven has Bechira to try to kill Shimon, however, if it is not decreed from Shamayim, then the shot will miss. This is the Shitas HaRambam and Chinuch. The Ohr Hachayim Hakadoish in this weeks Parshah disagrees with that. He says, that when Reuven is talking to the brothers he is saying, maybe Yosef is supposed to die Min Hashamayim or maybe not. If we kill him, there is no Raya that he is supposed to die. The reason is, if the snakes and scorpions kill him, that has nothing to do with Bechirah. Snakes don’t have Bechirah. It is up to Hashem if he is supposed to die or not. So Reuven was saying, if Yosef is supposed to die, let it be from snakes and scorpions and not from our hands.


This Ohr Hachayim Hakadoish fits well with a story in Nach that we say in the first Posuk of Tachanun.  Dovid was given a choice of punishments. Whether it should be by an enemy army against him, or as he actually chose a Dever. Dovid said (נִפְּלָה נָּא בְיַד ר’, כִּי רַבִּים רַחֲמָיו, וּבְיַד אָדָם אַל אֶפּלָה). Adom has Bechirah, he can harm me worse than it is supposed to be Min Hashamayim, rather it should be Miyad Hashem which will be with the Middah of Rachamim.


The third place we find this is from the Alshich as is brought down by the Mitzudas Dovid. In the 6th Perek of Daniel, when Daniel is thrown into the lions den. It was a pit with lions in it and the King put a stone over the pit and sealed the stone with cement. Why? So that the enemies of Daniel wouldn’t be able to roll away the stone to kill him. If he is supposed to die the lions will kill him, if he is not supposed to die than the Ribboinoi Shel Oilam can save him as well? It seems that the Alshich holds like the Ohr Hachayim Hakadoish, who says it is not possible for an animal to kill someone unless he is supposed to die, however, a human could. So the case of Daniel with the lions is identical to the case of Yosef with the snakes.


So what about the Rambam and Chinuch who say there is no difference between humans and animals? We have to say like those who ask, why is the sugya of Mayim Ein Boi Aval Nechashim V’acrabim Yeish Boi in middle of the sugya of Neirois Chanuka which is in Bameh Madlikin?


The velt says, that the Gemara before is discussing if something is 20 Amos away you don’t see it. So the same thing here, the Bor was 20 Amos deep, so the brothers didn’t see the Nechashim V’acrabim and that is why they threw him in. Al Kol Panim, this is a Yesoidoisdika Machloikes between the Rambam & Chinuch against the Alshich and the Ohr Hachayim Hakadoish that is worth remembering.


The next Vort on the Parsha is also a technical vort. Yehuda is not willing to give Sh’eila to Tamar and she was told to wait until Sh’eila grows up. Rashi says that Yehuda held that she is a Katlanus.  She killed two husbands, so she is not allowed to marry a third time. There are a couple of Kashas. First, why does it say wait until Sh’eila grows up? What is the difference if he grows up or not?


The second Kasha is, why didn’t they do Chalitzah?


The third Kasha, the Kesef Mishnah in Hilchois Issurei Biyah Perek Hei Halacha Chaf Alepf writes there is no issue of Katlanus when it is B’makoim Mitzvah because when someone is doing a Mitzvah nothing could happen to him?


Sh’eila was a Koton at this time, meaning there was no Mitzvah, meaning there was no protection. So when Yehuda said Ad Yigdal Sh’eila B’ni, it was mamosh for the Kesef Mishnah’s reason. So Yehuda was saying Ad Yigdal, when he grows up there is a Mitzvah so there is protection from Katlanus. So obviously there wouldn’t be a Yibum, because he was planning on doing a Yibum.

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