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Feeling bad about certain mitzvos


In your answer to someone, you said that if he did an aveira in the past, he should move on and not dwell on it.
I’m having trouble understanding how and why mitzvos like women’s mitzvos and Pidyon Haben are so joyful if we have them because of aveiros – Chava’s aveira and cheit ha’egel. Especially so with niddah – being tamei etc. etc. – maybe I can be happy that I’m getting a tikkun but the mitzva doesn’t sound like “move on”, it sounds like, “always remember” and I really do feel bad every month – I don’t feel joy in the mitzva, I feel shame. Everyone seems to be all into this mitzva and happy doing it – what am I missing?




You are asking a good question, and the idea needs clarification.

What I meant when telling those people that they should move on, was that after one has done teshuva, sometimes the person stays with guilty feelings, and keeps on knocking themselves, and wallowing in guilt. That is yetzer hora, and it is just going to inhibit the person from continuing to grow. Therefore, the person should not concentrate on the old aveiros that he has already done teshuva. (With the exception of very pious people who can handle this.)

Regarding pidyon haben, the reason for the mitzva is because Hashem took us out of Mitzrayim, therefore the first born have a certain kedusha, and a mitzva for us to be poda them. Whenever we do a mitzva, we are fulfilling Hashem’s will, perfecting ourselves, getting closer to Hashem, and gaining a tremendous reward in olam haba for eternity. This is definitely a good reason to rejoice.

Regarding nidda, it is true that one of the reasons why a woman was made this way was due to the sin of Chava, however right now, in her situation, and the way the world is at this point, keeping the laws adds a lot of perfection to the woman. She is fulfilling Hashem will, adding to her self-control, and she is going to be rewarded for it tremendously. This is besides the positive effect that it has on shalom bayis. After she goes to the mikva, she is like a new bride to her husband, and the couple’s relationship is enhanced.

The reason that woman are changed forever, because of the sin of Chava, is similar to the way men are changed forever, because of the sin of Adam. Now man has to toil to support his family, and it is quite difficult for him in most instances. Ramchal explains that the sin of eating from the tree of knowledge forced the world to change, and until moshiach comes we have to live in the world in its present form. This is part of the punishment, and cleansing process that the world needs as a result of that sin. This however does not apply to regular sins, where teshuva can erase the sin, and the person will be spared a punishment. This is why for most sins that we do, after doing teshuva, the best thing is to move on and not let the yetzer hora bog us down with guilty feelings, and thereby inhibit our future growth.

Best wishes



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