On the theme of the weekly chapter, Akharey mot-Kdoshim 1

“The words of the wise in peace are more audible than the cry of a ruler…” taught King Solomon (Ecclesiastes 9:17). Words spoken calmly are better perceived by people, Rashi explains. - ... The words of Moses are accepted by the Jews today, but the decrees of the rulers are not fulfilled.

In many families, conflicts between parents and children play out as if according to an established scenario, writes American psychologist Chaim Guinot in his bestseller Between Parent and Child. The child does or says something “bad”. The parent reproaches him in an insulting way. The child answers even "worse". Then the parent screams, threatens or resorts to physical assault.

- Nathan, stop playing with the cup, you will break it! the mother of a nine-year-old son warned. You always break dishes!

- No, I won't break it! Nathan disagreed, but at the same moment the cup fell out of his hands and broke.

"You're so stupid, you're breaking everything in this house!"

"You're stupid too!" You broke your dad's electric shaver.

“You called your mother stupid, rude!”

You were the first to call me stupid!

- Shut up, one more word - and I'll show you!

- Show me!

Reacting to a direct challenge to her authority, the mother began to beat her son in anger. Trying to break free, Nathan pushed her away, and she hit her hand on the glass door. At the sight of blood, Nathan ran out of the house in fear ...

Is this fight justified? It is not so important whether the mother managed to wean her son from “playing” with cups, how important is the negative lesson that Nathan learned about his mother and about himself. Could the conflict have been prevented?

Seeing her son playing with a cup, the mother could take the cup from his hands and offer, for example, to play ball. A positive indication is more effective than a paralyzing rebuke. When the cup broke, the mother could refrain from condemning her son. Insulting the child, she provoked his response. If, instead, the mother had helped her son pick up the pieces, he might have realized his mistake and apologized to her.

Her threat "challenged" the child's self-esteem, forcing him into a confrontation. The assault of the mother not only aroused negative feelings towards her in the son, but also served as a “role model”, demonstrating the permissibility of violence. How will this child behave when he grows up and has his own family? From seemingly insignificant incidents, the child learns important lessons, forming his own system of values ...

The louder we scream, the worse they hear us. Hurtful reproaches turn people into deaf people. What can we do to make our words heard?

“The words of the wise in peace are more audible than the cry of a ruler…” taught King Solomon (Ecclesiastes 9:17). Words spoken calmly are better perceived by people, Rashi explains. - ... The words of Moses are accepted by the Jews today, but the decrees of the rulers are not fulfilled.

“Who in our generation knows how to reproach?” the sages of the Talmud asked rhetorically. In order for a critical remark to be heard, skill is needed. He who knows how to express criticism tactfully has a great skill, necessary both in raising children and in everyday communication with people.

Two people can say the same words but have different intentions. Whose reproach will be heard: the one who reproaches another, thus expressing his dislike, wanting to rise above him, or the one who turns to a friend with a reproach because of love for him, realizing his responsibility for his good?

“Do not hate your brother in your heart. When reproaching, reproach your neighbor and you will not bear sin for him. Do not take revenge and do not keep evil on the sons of your people, but love your neighbor as yourself! (Vayikra 19:17-18).

Why does the commandment of rebuke precede the prohibition against “hating your brother”? Because the one who has not overcome hatred and has not “loved his neighbor” will not be able to reproach him, writes Evney Ezel. The more a father loves his son, takes care of his upbringing, the sooner the reproach coming from his loving heart will penetrate into the heart of his son. When reproaching a friend, you need to let him know that you are doing this for his own good, writes Sefer HaChinuch.

Why does the Torah say twice "reproaching reproach"?

- Reproach your friend in the same way as you would reproach yourself: with delicacy, understanding, condescension, love.

Reproach yourself first, then reproach others! When reproaching a friend, make sure that you yourself do not have the same defect. Otherwise, your reproach will not only not be heard, but will also become a lesson in duplicity: you can do one thing and say another.

- Reproach as many times as necessary, without despair, without losing hope for the correction of a friend.

What does it mean to “bear no sin for him”?

If you can reproach your neighbor, but do not do this, then you become an accomplice in his crime - “you bear his sin,” Ramban explains. However, on the other hand, when reproaching our neighbor, we must do it delicately, so as not to “bear sin” for this reproach. When reproaching a friend, do not shame him, do not make him turn pale in public, comments Rashi. It is forbidden to humiliate people, even if the reproach is expressed confidentially, face to face,” adds Chofetz Chaim. The one whose reproach is expressed in a rude form not only commits a sin, but also does not fulfill the commandments of reproach: after all, his words will not be heard anyway, my teacher Rav Boruch Ezrahi adds.

“The moment you reproach another, reproach yourself too! wrote the Rebbe from Gur. - Do not reproach him for the whole gravity of sin - “do not lift all the sin on him”, because all Jews are responsible for each other. If you feel that you also bear some share of responsibility for his sin and repent of it, then he will repent of his sin.” When raising children, parents should remember that children are a mirror of the family, in which parents are reflected. Criticizing children, we often point out to them the shortcomings that we ourselves have. By improving ourselves, we show children an example worthy of emulation. Raising children is, first of all, a constant process of educating ourselves.