The Human Side of the Story

For the week ending 17 November 2012 / 2 Kislev 5773

The Strange Dance

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
Library Library Library

The Torah discussion between Rabbi Meir Simcha Hacohen — the rav of the Latvian community of Dvinsk and author of the”Ohr Somayach” — and one of his disciples was interrupted by the arrival of a young couple. The rav invited them into his private chamber while the disciple waited outside.

After a while the sound of singing and dancing came from the rav’s room, arousing the curiosity of his disciple who rushed to peek through the keyhole. To his surprise he saw the rav and the couple singing and dancing around the table.

After the rav came out of his room and bade the couple farewell he explained to his disciple what had transpired.

“Don’t be surprised,” he told him, “why I spent so much time with that couple. Their parents are the most respected people of the community and dear friends of mine. For some silly reason the husband came to me the other day asking for a divorce. I asked him to bring his wife to me, and when they arrived I spent a long time convincing the young man to abandon his idea of divorce. When I finally succeeded I decided to put the final touch on domestic peace by dancing around the table with them.”

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