As you’ll remember from THIS post, every time we speak, participate or believe in some juicy gossiping session, we commit a minimum of 31 Torah transgressions. There’s an idea that each word of lashon hara adds up to 31 Torah transgressions, so even if all you do is speak, willingly listen to (or read…), or believe an average sentence of lashon hara, man, you just racked up a HUGE amount of spiritual judgments against yourself.
Those judgments then go on to manifest in all sorts of horrible ways, like illness, poverty, strife, arguments with your spouse, problems with your kids etc etc etc.
As a case in point: a little while back, someone went to see Rav Chaim Kanievsky about the cancerous growth that had been discovered in their throat. Rav Kanievsky told them that it had come about because they’d been speaking badly about Rav Berland, and that they needed to go and apologise ASAP, if they wanted to start negating the terrible judgment they’d brought down on themselves with their lashon hara and slander.
That man flew out to Morocco to say sorry and publicize his story.
Another case in point: Another individual I’m acquainted with has been pinging around all the negative, slanderous news stories about Rav Berland, as though they’re Torah Me Sinai. Very shortly afterwards, that person ended up in hospital with a very serious health condition.
God hates it when Jews speak evilly about each other. He hates strife and division. He hates all the lies and arrogance that make up 99.99% of the internet. He hates when people disconnect from Him, and Torah, and doing the right thing, to participate in some Facebook discussion, or blog argument that’s full of criticism, mockery, slander, victory-seeking, arrogance and I don’t know what else.
The more you’re on the internet, the more lashon hara, slander, arrogance, heresy and lies you’re absorbing. The more that’s coloring your outlook. The more that’s slipping into your own speech, your own ideas, your own interactions with other people.
And if it isn’t stopped and addressed in time, then that leads to some very big spiritual judgments against you and your loved ones.
Which brings me to the story given over by the late Rav Wosner, ZTL, and i-Phones, that Rav Arush recently quoted in one of his parsha sheets.
The story is this: Rav Shmuel Wosner is an enormous Ashkenazi Posek Din, or halachic decisor. When there’s really tough cases and no-one knows what to do al pi halacha, they bring the issue to Rav Wosner.
Sometime back, he was asked to rule on a very difficult matter regarding a pregnancy that was seriously threatening the life of the mother. After careful deliberation, he ruled that the pregnancy should be terminated. Shortly afterwards, the soul of the dead baby appeared to him in a dream, and started raging against Rav Wosner that he wanted to take him to the Heavenly Court to be judged, for ordering his death.
The dream continued on a number of occasions, until Rav Wosner finally told the soul that taking him to a Heavenly tribunal wouldn’t change anything, because what the (orthodox…) rabbis rule down here is accepted as ‘law’ in Heaven, too. At that point, the soul left him alone.
Rav Wosner then turned to the audience he was addressing, and told them that he, and many other poseks had also decreed that anyone who has a smart phone, won’t have olam haba. Doesn’t matter how many mitzvot they do, how ‘frum’ they dress, how much Torah they learn, if they have a smart phone and they don’t get rid of it and make Teshuva, when they get upstairs they’ll find that the ‘law’ is that they don’t have any olam haba to look forward to.
I know smart phones are convenient. I know you can check your emails, and hear your favorite shiurim, and do all that other super-holy stuff that is apparently all that anyone frum ever does with their smart phone.
But the Gedolei HaDor have made a clear judgment that will be upheld in Shemayim that if you have a phone that’s connected to the internet, you won’t get the world to come.
I don’t know about you, but I’m not sure the convenience of being able to check my emails and stay up with the local Whassup! Group is worth eternal spiritual destruction.
But what do I know?
The picture below is of the late Rav Shmuel Wosner, ZTL