Number of Words in Life

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  • #592813
    Helpful
    Member

    Everyone is given a certain number of words in his life. Once he uses them up, his life concludes. Torah doesn’t count against his allotment.

    Can anyone expound on this subject?

    #704453
    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    If that were so, mutes would live forever.

    The Wolf

    #704455
    Helpful
    Member

    This is Torah.

    #704456
    laguy
    Member

    I don’t think that was meant to be taken literally, as The Wolf points out otherwise mutes would live forever. It’s meant to show you the power of words and to be cautious how you use them.

    #704457
    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    This is Torah.

    Source?

    And your rejoinder didn’t address my point.

    The Wolf

    #704458
    Helpful
    Member

    I don’t know that ones life cannot conclude prior to completing his allotment.

    #704461
    shimmel
    Member

    Helpful, I remember learning this a few years back although i can’t quote you a source..

    But, we also learnt that a person can add words to his life through davening and/or learning torah….

    #704462
    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    But, we also learnt that a person can add words to his life through davening and/or learning torah….

    Well, we believe that arichas yomim can be a reward for any number of mitzvos, including learning Torah. That really has nothing to do with Helpful’s point.

    The Wolf

    #704463
    laguy
    Member

    So how does this work practically? Do you utter your last words and then die? Do you utter your last words then get sick? So many people lay unconscious for days, weeks, months without saying a word before they die. So can we take this literally? PLEASE!

    #704464
    squeak
    Participant

    How many words does blogging count as?

    #704465
    shimmel
    Member

    many mitzvos are segulas for arichas yomim yes, that’s granted. But, his point was that when you’re just chattering you are using up words, to counter that you can daven and learn torah..

    #704466
    WIY
    Member

    The Chofetz Chaim teaches that every body part has a certain amount of time that we can use it, including the tongue. This means that the amount of words you use in your life has a cutoff. Do you really want to waste the precious few words you have on lashon hara and nivul peh?

    #704467
    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    that every body part

    Do you really want to waste the precious few words you have on lashon hara and nivul peh?

    Do you want to waste the precious few chews you have on potato chips? Do you want to waste your precious few arm motions playing ball with your kid? Do you want to waste your precious few steps exploring the zoo?

    In other words, if the point is true, why is *speech* always singled out. I *never* hear anyone say “don’t eat that pizza — you only have so many swallows and you might want to save it for something more holy.*”

    The Wolf

    (*As if there could ever be anything more holy than pizza. 🙂 )

    #704468
    WIY
    Member

    “In those days paralysis was extremely prevalent and many people fell victim to it with no relief in sight. I remember how the Chofetz Chaim would relate to this when speaking to us: Where does the disease of paralysis originate?' he would ask rhetorically.Why has this disease spread to almost epidemic proportions during the last few years? If we would examine it we would observe that this is indeed a very strange affliction: A person has a mouth, a palate, lips, a throat, everything, but he cannot utter one word from his mouth! What happened? Paralysis! A person has legs, knees, feet, everything, but to walk? Not even one step. What happened? What does Hakodosh Boruch Hu want from us?

    ” `Every human being has an account, an allowance of sorts. For example, a person might be allotted a million steps in his lifetime. After he has used up those million steps, there are no more! Finished! And from then on the person can still have feet and all the rest — but to walk? Not one more step. His allowance is depleted. Moreover, this person must know that each and every footstep is written down. Every step is reckoned. Guard your steps. Don’t go to places of wrongdoing. Don’t waste what you were given.

    ” `A person has a mouth. Hakodosh Boruch Hu gave a person a certain number of words in his lifetime. As soon as he has used up all his words — finished! He can have all the organs of speech but not one word will he be able to pronounce. Keep this in mind and guard your speech! Know that every word is written down; each word is subtracted from your allowance. Don’t waste them!

    ” `The same goes for the eyes, the hands and all the other organs of the body.’

    From an interview with HaRav Kalman Farber a talmid of the Chofetz Chaim.

    #704469
    twisted
    Participant

    And I often joke, when tired or want to be left alone ” I have exceeded the allotment of words for today” Wow, ain beis medrash bli chiddush. So i was right all along?

    #704470
    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    I cannot imagine any context in which this would be a productive thing to think or tell someone.

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