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Rav Zevin: Kedoshim

“You shall not go about tale bearing” (19:16) As he walked up and down the beis midrash of Reb Yehudah Aryeh Leib of Ger, all that could be heard from his mouth was an uncomplimentary barrage of rebukes, all of which were addressed at no less a personage than _ himself, Reb Pinchas Eliyahu of Piltz. Words like these one would hardly hurl at the most unworthy individual, and when they were heard by the speaker’s uncle, Reb Avraham of Parisov, he approached him and said: “Young man, if you don’t mind, please don’t say such harsh things about our Reb Pintchi, for round these parts we consider him to be a man of some stature. In particular, I would advise you to watch out for the wrath of our younger chassidim, because if they get to hear you saying unpleasant things about our Reb Pintchi, they’ll want to break your bones … Besides, if I were to say this kind of thing about you, you would no doubt be angry with me, so who gives you the right to talk this way about yourself?”
”True enough,” said Reb Pintchi. “If anyone else were to say these things about me, I would probably regard him as an enemy. But when I talk about myself this way _ why, I’m my own friend.”

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