A Second Chance by Dovid Pearlman ('19)


While we often times attempt to do the right thing, we can slip up. We’ve all said or done things we should not have; and therefore, regret it. It may have been a choice that we made, a word that we said, or a life that we lead, which we wish could erase. It can sometimes seem so hopeless. Is there a way we can go back and evade this mistake altogether?

Many laws discussed in Parashat Mishpatim relate to damags. A specific case is that of a Shor SheNagach (an ox that gored). An ox is expected to naturally be a tame animal, and the Torah considers a Shor SheNagach for the first time to be an aberration. The monetary charge in such a case is half the cost of the damages. When an ox gores another two times, the monetary charge is the full cost of the damages. However, there are two ways the owner of the ox can evade his obligation of paying the full cost of the victim.

The first way the owner can be exempt from payment is if the ox changes ownership or if it is placed in the exact same position and situation as before and does no harm.

This same Halachic principle can be applied to our lives. There are two ways in which one can be exempt from his punishment. The first way is to undergo a change of ownership. Meaning, one should change his mentality altogether and move on from the incident. You must say to yourself that Hashem is your owner and you are subservient to Him alone. The second way is to undergo intense Teshuvah, so the next time you find yourself in the situation where you previously erred, you’ll make the right choice and follow in Hashem’s ways.

   May we all be Zocheh to always stay positive, even in the hardest of times, and be able to truly serve the Ribono Shel Olam with complete Bitachon and Emunah!

The Perfect Balance by Ezra Seplowitz ('20)

Mikdash and Mussar by Rabbi David Einhorn