Mishmeres HaSholom: Ask the Rav

Q: One of my colleagues hung up an invitation to her wedding in the coffee room in our office with a note: “Please accept this as a personal invitation.”

Two days before her wedding, while I was talking to our manager, I asked, “Are you coming to the wedding?” to which she responded, “She couldn’t go through the bother of sending me an invitation and you expect me to attend? I know that she did mail invitations to people with whom she has a close relationship.”

The manager then added a few more negative comments about the girl who was getting married. I was shocked. Without intending to do so, I had caused her to slander my colleague.

Would the above constitute a transgression? If so, how can I correct it?

A: You did not violate the basic halachah because you could not have known that you were treading on dangerous ground with the manager. It would therefore be considered an oness — a no-choice situation, which is pardoned. Chazal, however, contend that “Merits come about through the meritorious and faults by the faulty.” Since, at the end of the day, you did cause the lashon hara, it would be appropriate to put extra emphasis on the words in your prayer (after Birchos Hashachar, Nusach Sephard), “Save me today… from ayin hara and lashon hara.”

The questions and answers above were taken from the Mishmeres Hasholom pamphlet in Israel. For details and inquiries, please e-mail us at office@hasholom.org or call 972-2 5379160.

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions
of Hamodia.