Parshas Ki Sisa 5778

ויאמר אליהם אהרן פרקו נזמי הזהב אשר באזני נשיכם   Ahron said to them remove the rings of gold that are in the ears of your wives

The Daas Zikeinim explains that even though it appears from the pasuk that Ahron was doing something negative by creating the calf, his intentions were really for the sake of Heaven.  He considered taking over temporary leadership of the Jewish people.   However, he was concerned that when his brother, Moshe, would return, he might be upset seeing Aharon leading in his absence.  He decided, instead, to try to involve the people in things that would be viewed as nothingness and empty until Moshe returned.

The Chidushei Halev extrapolates an unbelievable lesson from this idea. He explains that Ahron knew that the moment Moshe returned from the mountain, he would explain his intentions to his brother, and happily return the leadership position to him.  Even so, Aharon was concerned that if even for a moment this would trouble Moshe, this plan would be unacceptable.  Aharon made this decision even though he knew that Moshe was the humblest of all men, and he knew that Moshe had been loath to accept the position initially out of consideration for Ahron’s feelings.

We find a similar idea in the story of Yaakov when he initially came to Lavan’s house.  As he entered the city where Lavan lived, he asked the people if they knew Lavan.  When they respond that they did, Yaakov asked if everything was good with Lavan.  Only after Yaakov determined that all was well, did he seek out Lavan.  The Sforno explains that Yaakov went through this exercise because it is not proper for a guest to come to someone’s house during a time of great joy or of great sadness.  Yaakov did not want to approach Lavan until he was able to determine Lavan’s situation. The Chidushe Halev points out that even though Yaakov could have made small talk with him for a couple of minutes and recognized the situation, he did not want to cause him pain even momentarily.  For that reason, he investigated before locating Lavan.

We should learn from these examples the importance of trying to recognize what could be a sensitive area for a person, even if it isn’t obvious, and to try not to hurt anyone even for a brief moment.