This week’s Torah portion describes the different types of tzaraas, leprosy. Tzaraas was a punishment for speaking lashon hara, gossip or slander. What was unique about this particular punishment was that the person who spoke the lashon hara did not get tzaraas right away. First his house was stricken with tzaraas. If he did not repent, the tzaraas spread to his clothing. If he STILL refused to repent, only then did he develop tzaraas on his skin.

What I personally find most interesting is that the house got tzaraas, the clothing got tzaraas, and the person got tzaraas, but the animals did not get tzaraas. On that topic, let me talk about a sick animal.

There was once a horse named Charlie. Charlie was overworked and as a result got CHARLIE HORSE. Farmer Joe, who owned the horse, got very nervous and took Charlie straight to DR. SUESS.* Dr. Suess took one look at the horse and smiled. He told Farmer Joe, “Don’t worry, YOUR HORSE IS IN STABLE CONDITION!”

*Sus means horse in Hebrew.

by R’ Yaakov Moskowitz

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