Question:

I really don’t know what to do, but when I see someone doing something he shouldn’t, it really upsets me. I really want him to just do it, for example. to daven mincha! and when he doesn’t I just get more and more upset inside. Is it right to feel in that way? After all, it’s not for my sake but for Hashem’s. On the other hand, really it’s his personal business and he is the one who will ultimately be responsible for his actions. However, when I see him doing such a thing, it really makes me feel angry or otherwise very disturbed. I know that ideally it should be with complimenting him when he does do something good, but what should I do when he doesמ’t?
If I would say something, it would only cause him to go even worse, as if to spite me, but I really don’t know what else to do!
What should I do in such a situation?
Thank you very much!

Answer:

It is very nice that you feel so much for H-shem’s mitzvos, that it bothers you when you see someone doing something against the Torah. You are very correct, if you suspect that by your saying something it will make the situation worse, then you have a mitzva not to say anything. The gemora (Yevamos 65b) says “כשם שמצוה על אדם לומר דבר הנשמע כך מצוה על אדם שלא לומר דבר שאינו נשמע” “the same way it is a mitzva to say something that will be listened to, likewise it is a mitzva not to say something that won’t be listened to”. After all the reason you would be saying something is to help the person of for H-shem’s honor, but if it will only make things worse then, it is causing honor to H-shem by not saying anything to him. Nowadays, most of us are not capable of correcting people correctly, therefore if you don’t think you can do it right, leave it alone.

One rule regarding correcting other people is that it has to be done out of love, and in a loving way.

Additionally, it cannot be done when you are angry, at the person, because what you say will not be accepted. Therefore, you should wait until you can rid yourself of the anger in your heart, think positively about the person, and then talk to the person in a positive way. If you will get used to complimenting the person, and the other person will feel that they have your respect, then you will be in a much better position to correct him/her.

You should have a lot of siyata dishmaya.

Tags: Tochacha

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