March 15, 2020 8:49 am at 8:49 am #1839745
Parshas Ki Sisa opens with an eerily timely warning: if you count Bnei Yisroel, there will be a plague. And indeed the Gemora tells us that in the times of דוד המלך Bnei Yisroel were counted, and a deadly plague began to spread. Interestingly, the plague killed exactly 100 people a day. So to stop the plague, דוד decreed that everybody should make 100 brachos every day. But how does counting brachos counteract counting people?
Why would a king want to count his people? Simple: he wants to assess the might of his kingdom. But that is based on a false worldview. The security and prosperity of a nation is not determined by its population, but rather by Hashem. Counting the people shows a false sense of security, as if we determine our destiny and not the Almighty.
Brachos are the exact opposite. A bracha is an affirmation that this is Hashem’s world, and He controls everything. We acknowledge that all that we have comes only from Hashem.
לעילוי נשמת ר׳ חיים דוב בן ר׳ בןציון שלום
לרפואה שלמה דוד חיים בן עטלMarch 15, 2020 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm #1839938JosephParticipant
Yasher Koach!March 15, 2020 3:24 pm at 3:24 pm #1840015
See https://www.theyeshivaworld.com/coffeeroom/topic/chidushim-on-daf-yomi/page/5 Reply # 1838020March 15, 2020 5:14 pm at 5:14 pm #1840039
The brochos remind us כל מה דעבד רחמנא לטב עבד – גם זו לטובה, everything is for the best,. The word קללה can be turned around to ‘הלל ק The Chasam Sofer explains the implication וראית את אחורי ופני לא יראו where we see things only from hindsight. See SA O’CH 46,3March 16, 2020 9:29 am at 9:29 am #1840301
Pertinent to the above discussion, I absolutely must quote what the ב״ח writes in או״ח סי׳ מ״ו אות ט׳:
שהשיב רב נטרונאי וכו’ להורות שיהיו נזהרין לברך אותם ולא יסמכו על עניית אמן כי איכא סכנת מיתת ק’ ישראל בכל יום כמו שהיה קודם שתקן דוד ק’ ברכות אלו דלא מהני עניית אמן אלא לע”ה
Translation: “Rav Natrunai (one of the Geonim) wrote in a Teshuva that one should not rely on answering Amen for the count of 100 brachos, because the same danger of 100 Jews dying each day still exists just like it did when David HaMelech instituted that each person should say 100 brachos and answering Amen only words for people who do not know how to read.”March 16, 2020 11:37 am at 11:37 am #1840334
Zugger613 The above needs some explanation as the tragedy did not happen by itself but by counting without shekolim. Maybe once he established the 100 brochos, it became a chiyuv as in SA O’CH 46.3. Our costume is to count with a pasuk. See Rabbenu Bechaye on ותא יהי-ה בהם נגף בפקוד אותם don’t separate the bad from the good of the group by counting.March 4, 2021 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm #1954282
BumpMarch 4, 2021 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm #1954286Always_Ask_QuestionsParticipant
Counting is not just to assess the value, it is also for the purposes of Army draft, taxes (Mas), including sending workers as a tax. Megilla starts and ends with taxes, so that got to be important.
What would the be modern equivalent? not just a census, but maybe an election? Don’t do elections for no reason just to re-assess your power?
It is to David’s credit that he moved to Teshuva. He could have said that extra 100 people a day is not that much. They might have died from a heart attack anyway.
Interesting,ly Israel had highest number of niftarim during this whole pandemic – 101! – on Jan 20 (blame Biden?), the only day over 100. Population now and then look similar. David counted 1.3 mln fighters, so 6-7 mln peopleMarch 5, 2021 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm #1954330
The Rabbenu Bachya there explains that by counting we separate the good and the bad but together we are all good. People are bad mainly because of gaiva, where they think that everything given to them they deserve. Saying a hundred brachas a day recognizes that everything comes from Hashem as a Matnas Chinom. It says in SA O’CH 98,5 that a person should not be thinking that he davened well and therefore he is deserving to be answered because that creates a scrutiny of his actions being judged in a harsher way.
David Hamelech said to Shaul that Hashem got you to sin by creating the yetzer hara. Therefore, counting through machtzis hashekel unites the Jews, as we need two half shekolim to make one, so it fights the effect of the yetzer hara. No sin is recognized when we are in unity but unity is broken up through gaiva. David Hamelech miscalculated figuring that the Machtzis Hashekel is a temporary foregiveness on the sin of the Eigel and just required for the building of the mishkan but it is required whenever we count the Jews. Also, the machtzis hashekel was even more required as the count was made with no purpose, so the mashchis took over without seeing good or bad but the bad, somewhat, got converted to good by the uttering of hundred brachas everyday recognizing that everything comes from Hashem as stated above making gaiva disappear but without it, gaiva would break up unity and the theme of the machtzis hashekel will not help.March 5, 2021 1:02 pm at 1:02 pm #1954357
The above tries to explain why David Hamelech instituded the brachas on everyone.
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