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28 Nissan 5760 - May 3, 2000 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly








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The Hespedim for HaRav Simcha Ziskind Broide, zt"l

The following are summaries of the hespedim delivered during the levaya of HaRav Broide at the Givat Mordechai campus of the Chevron Yeshiva where the Rosh Yeshiva learned and taught for decades.

HaRav Aharon Leib Steinman, in his remarks noted that, "The Rosh Yeshiva was a talmid chochom who studied Torah constantly and surely had qualities and traits which he concealed. Chazal say that following Rabbi Akiva's death kovod haTorah was nullified. The spiritual discrepancy between the generation of Rabbi Akiva and ensuing generations is so great that it is impossible to describe. Kovod haTorah of our generation is naught in comparison with the kovod haTorah of the generation of the tanoim. The small amount of kovod haTorah which we have -- minute in comparison with the generation of Rabbi Akiva -- is [embodied by the concept] that a talmid chochom is limud haTorah and kovod haTorah. We must strengthen ourselves and pray that everyone will fill the lack of kovod haTorah and that many talmidei chachomim will develop for the sake of Klal Yisroel. We must pray that kovod haTorah and limud haTorah proliferate."

HaRav Michel Yehuda Lefkowitz cited the verse, "If they ask you, `Why do you sigh?' you will say: Due to the rumor which has come, and every heart shall melt, and all hands will become weak." He explained: "The body could not [withstand] the rumor they heard. What was that rumor? A great prince had fallen in that day in Israel. The rosh yeshiva of Hevron was an illustrious gaon who toiled in Torah and taught Torah for more than fifty years, to numerous students. His teaching did not begin when he became rosh yeshiva, but rather even in the period I studied there, when he would speak in learning among the chaburos and students. The Rosh Yeshiva was, even at that time, the one who decided and determined every thing. `Zichru Toras Moshe avdi.' Why did he merit all this? Because he possessed the trait of humility."

HaRav Shmuel Berenbaum, the rosh yeshiva of Mir in the United States, was the next speaker. He said: "According halocho when a talmid chochom is niftar, all are [considered] his relatives. Everyone is a relative and the feeling we have is even deeper than our knowledge of this fact. Moshe Rabbenu asked Hakodosh Boruch Hu: `Show me your glory.' Rambam explains that Moshe Rabbenu wanted to understand [the meaning of the concept] kovod Hashem. The Creator of the world answered him: `A human cannot see me and live.'

"As long as a man is in a body it is impossible for him to understand the difficult topic of kovod Hashem. Chazal say that the Torah calls whoever teaches his fellow's son Torah his progenitor, as if he gave birth to him, because that is the only possible way to teach Torah [to give of oneself like a father gives to his son]. When we see students from Hevron who are great in Torah, it is because the Rosh Yeshiva gave each one of them part of himself, as if he were his progenitor." Regarding the command, `veshinantom levonecho,' HaRav Boruch Ber said, `Those who teach Torah and educate their sons are obligated to inculcate them with the idea that every man must become a godol beTorah.'"

HaRav Nosson Tzvi Finkel, the rosh yeshiva of Mir, cited the words of Rabbi Yochanan when Rabbi Eliezer fell ill: "Hai shufra deboli afro." HaRav Finkel then said, "The Rosh Yeshiva HaRav Simcha Zissel was hai shufra (beauty). His Torah was shufra. As a talmid chochom he was shufra. His quality of greatness was shufra. The Torah beautified him. A man's face testifies to his wisdom. He illuminated the Torah and the Torah illuminated him. `Toras Hashem temimo meshivas nofesh.'"

HaRav Boruch Shimon Solomon, rosh yeshiva of Nachlas Dovid and Chief Rabbi of Petach Tikvah, delivered a hesped in the name of the yeshiva's students from all the years. He said: "Chazal say that when Moshe Rabbenu passed away, Hakodosh Boruch Hu kissed him and took his soul away with a kiss of the mouth. Hakodosh Boruch Hu, so to speak, wept: `Mi yokum li im merei'im. Mi yisyatzeiv li im poalei oven.' Heaven cried: `Ovad chossid min ho'oretz.' Earth wept: `Veyoshar bo'odom ayin.' The entire world wept.

"There are two explanations to Hakodosh Boruch Hu's cry of `Mi yokum li im merei'im.' One means, `who will rise up against the merei'im (evildoers),' and the other, `who will pray on behalf of the merei'im.' When Yehoshua sought his mentor and didn't find him, he wept. Yehoshua, the disciple of Moshe Rabbenu who never left the tent of Torah, cried: `Hoshia Hashem ki govar chassid, ki pasu emunim mibnei odom.' Yehoshua wasn't eulogizing Moshe Rabbenu; he was praying for himself: Hoshia Hashem. He asked for a yeshua from Hashem. So too, we, the students, beseech: 'Hashem hoshia, ki gomar chossid, ki pasu emunim mibnei odom.'"

The next to speak was HaRav Moshe Mordechai Farbstein, one of the roshei yeshiva of Hevron. With weeping and deep emotion he cried out the verse in Shir Hashirim, "Hishbati eschem benos Yerushalayim, mah tagidu lo, shecholas ahava oni." This, he explained, refers to the love of talmidei chachomim of houses of learning and Torah. "All of us were familiar with the great extent of the Rosh Yeshiva's love for Torah and the yeshiva from the aspect of cholas ahava."

HaRav Dovid Cohen, one of the roshei yeshiva of Hevron said: "I can't deliver a hesped over the Rosh Yeshiva, zt"l. I am not worthy to eulogize, but can only cry out: `The crown of our heads has fallen. Woe to us, we have sinned.' When Eliyahu Hanovi went up to Heaven, Elisha Hanovi cried out: `Ovi, Ovi rechev Yisroel uforoshov.' The gemora in Moed Koton says that `Ovi Ovi' means, `my father and my mother.' Students are called sons of the one who taught them Torah. In addition to the father who taught them Torah there is the aspect of the mother, who expresses the geniality, the love and the warmth of the rosh hayeshiva. [He was not only] a father who taught his students Torah, but also like a devoted mother who was concerned for her only son."

The final hesped was delivered by his son-in-law, HaRav Shmuel Segal, who pointed out that everyone was weeping over the loss of a great man who was a ben olam haboh. "My father, zt"l, said in the name of HaRav Chaim Vital that the Torah doesn't mention middos because derech eretz precedes Torah -- derech eretz and middos. Without this basis, it is impossible to receive the Torah. `Derech eretz kodmo leTorah.' The middos are the foundation upon which we build the edifice of Torah. The Mishnah says: `Eilu devorim she'odom ochel peiroseihem bo'olam hazeh vehakeren kayemes lo le'olom haboh: kibbud ov vo'eim, gemilus chassodim, vetalmud Torah.' That is the order. The family knows the extent of my father-in-law the Rosh Yeshiva's filial respect and gemilus chassodim. A brief while before he was niftar he spoke about gemilus chassodim with his nephew. Such glory, such grandeur, such beauty, such a baal mussar,, such a yirei Elokim. Such great character traits. With them one acquires such brilliance."

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