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News Item 338. Mishlei 18-19 (Brotherhood)

A new proverb was added to the Mishlei section on Sunday August 20.

People who are granted the privilege of sharing their youthful years with brothers or

sisters don’t give much thought to the powerful forces that can affect such a

relationship. Hidden beneath the surface of comradeship and instinctive goodwill

there is the potential for intense love born of a shared identity. At the same time

there is the surprising potential of intense and lasting hatred born of envy and


These powerful emotions are inherent in the circumstance of the sibling relationship. They are brought into actuality when the right conditions are present, such as when a brother or sister is in desperate need or when there is an inheritance to be shared.

News Item 337. Mishlei (Arbitration)

A new proverb was added to the Mishlei section on Tuesday August 15.

When individuals get into arguments about the ownership of property, they generally

turn to a judicial authority to resolve the conflict. However, there may not be

sufficient evidence to point to a clear solution. In such case the judge or Beis Din may

recommend a process of arbitration where both parties agree in advance to accept

the outcome. An example of an arbitration process involves a lottery or the casting of

a lot ( גוֹרָל ). Since the outcome of the lottery cannot be predicted in advance, the

two parties can more easily accept that it reflects the will of Hashem.

News Item 336. Mishlei 16-21 (Intellectual Development)

Proverb 16-21 was updated on Sunday August 13 to incorporate the following Additional Insight:
The speech of the teacher is described as sweet because it sounds pleasant to the ear. It is also sweet because the teacher extends himself beyond his own concerns and projects his thoughts to the welfare of his students. He thinks about how the ear of his students will perceive what he has said and adjusts the presentation for their benefit. That gracious, unselfish quality of love for others makes it especially sweet.
This addition is in response to the suggestion of one of our thoughtful readers who felt that some further insight was called for. 

News Item 335. Mishlei 18-17 (Prejudice)

A new proverb was added to the Mishlei section on Friday August 11.

In every community honest differences of opinion will arise from time to time

regarding a controversial issue. Why do people choose one point of view or another?

The right way to do this would be to dispassionately investigate all the facts and

make a decision based on the view that is supported by the weight of evidence and


Unfortunately that does not always happen. People are often swayed by their prejudices based on the impact of previous experiences. They are locked into attitudes blocking out proper consideration of facts that have more recently come to light.

News Item 334. Mishlei 18-16 (Giving)

A new proverb was added to the Mishlei section on Wednesday August 9.

The distribution of financial wealth in a community is affected by many factors, but

ultimately it is Hashem who determines how much each of us possesses at any time.

And yet individuals are motivated to give some of their possessions to others while

many individuals find it extremely difficult to give money away.

News Item 333. Mishlei 18-15 (Learning)

A new proverb was added to the Mishlei section on Thursday August 3.

Every righteous person should be engaged in learning Torah to a greater or lesser

degree throughout his life. But the learning process has two major modes, which are

not equally accessible. One of these two modes depends upon an external source of

knowledge (received wisdom). The other depends upon the knowledge that the

person has already acquired, but has extended through study and reflection.

News Item 332. Mishlei 18-14 (Attitude)

A new proverb was added to the Mishlei section on Monday July 30.

How does a person develop a positive attitude. He needs to believe that no matter

what is going on in his life, good things are coming. A person needs to have a rational

basis for believing that hope in the future is justified. Such a basis exists when he

believes he has been created for a purpose, and that his Creator wants to see the

purpose fulfilled. Also, whatever that purpose may be in each individual case, the

underlying framework is a world of kindness.

News Item 331. Mishlei 18-13 (Haste)

A new proverb was added to the Mishlei section on Thursday July 13.

This proverb offers an important example of the price to paid for unwarranted haste.

What happens when an expert is asked to clarify the halachah in a situation?

Ordinarily, before giving his answer, it is essential for the expert to understand the circumstances in which the question arose. If the expert lacks patience and rushes with his answer before listening to the full details of the question, he may misinterpret what is being asked and his answer will be inappropriate, or even incorrect.
People who jump the gun and fail to show the courtesy of listening to the full question are demonstrating their conceit. They believe their time is so valuable and they are so smart that they don’t need to hear out the full question with all of its fine points. However, they are often mistaken, embarrassingly so.

News Item 330. Mishlei 18-12 (Humility)

A new proverb was added to the Mishlei section on Tuesday July 4.

In a previous proverb (12-16), Mishlei warned people against arrogant pride and the hunger for honor that drives it. A person who seeks to be gratified by honors should expect the opposite, for pride is generally unjustified and is therefore a precurser to tragedy.

Mishlei now carries this theme forward and draws attention to the virtue of humility which is the converse of pride. A prideful person seeks honor but a humble person shuns honor. If he is honored, the honor comes to the humble person in recognition of his humility. He does not allow the honor to distort his character.
Whereas the prideful person is corrupted by honor, the humble person is ennobled by it.

News Item 329. Mizmor 119-049 (Zayin) - Time

A new pasuk has been added to the Zayin segment of Mizmor 119 as of Erev Shabbos Parshas Chukas, June 30.