Our Children – Our Peiros, A Tu B’Shvat Message

By: Rabbi Sender Kaszirer. This week we celebrate the Yom Tov of Tu B’ishvat. The Mishna in Rosh Hashanah tells us that Tu B’ishvat is the New Year for trees. The Minhag in Klal Yisroel is to eat many different fruit especially shivas haminim. The message is clear “ki haadam eitz hasdeh” man is compared to a tree and therefore his children and offspring are fruit of the tree. Let us apply this message of Tu B’ishvat as a mean and a way to be mechanech our children.

Fruit are so different and unique, yet each has its own beautiful quality, color, and taste. The grape grows in clusters on a vine, row after row, has one specific season, and harvest. The fig tree on the other hand is the exact opposite, no two fig fruit ripe simultaneously, its season is spread across the entire summer and its fruits grow in a wild manner throughout the tree. Pomegranates as we know have a tough bitter outer skin, but the inside are so fruity and sweet. The olive is a small bitter fruit but grows on a low tree, easy to reach, while on the other hand dates, grow on a tall high palm tree way out of reach but once you get to them you are rewarded with a juicy sweet fruit.

The similarity is quite obvious. Many children and students perform beautifully in a typical yeshiva system their learning is predictable. And our tried and true curriculum is the key to their hatzalcha just like grapes in a vineyard. It is therefore no coincidence that Chazal refer to a yeshiva as kerem (e.g. kerem b’yavne). Yet we must realize there are other fruits as well, figs, tee’aina. They take some more time to bloom and ripen. These students need patience and understanding, and some more time for them to blossom and produce its beauty. But with proper care they give us nachas and fulfillment. It is for this reason that Shlomo Hamelech writes in Mishlei “notzer tee’aina yochal piryah” that one who watches and has the patience for the fig to ripen he will reap true nachas.

The list goes on and on, while some students are hard to reach but once you penetrate that thick outer shell you are rewarded to see their true sweet yiddishe neshama. The common thread is that all talmidim and children deserve their chance to thrive and to blossom with one important component. They must be connected to the tree, the “eitz chaim” our heilge Torah.

On Tu B’ishvat we are mispallel for “peiros hailon” fruit of the trees. Let us daven for our own personal peirus, our beloved children that each and everyone shall burst forth and develop into his or her own beautiful personality, each one with their personal talents goals and aspirations. Let us present to Hakadosh Baruch Hu this beautiful basket of bikkurim made up of all different fruit and all together each one will be a source of nachas for Klal Yisroel. TLS.

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  1. Thank you Rabbi for these words of wisdom.

    I would just like to add, that a tree is similiar to a person in the following way as well.

    When one looks at a individual branch on a tree, it seems like a very un orginized/confusing item that doesn’t posess any specific order or purpose. However, when one steps back and looks at the full tree, all of the branches together make a beautiful perfect form.The same is true of our lives. When we we see the full picture, nothing is confusing,infact it all makes perfect sense. Each branch of a tree represents the different situations in life that a individual finds himself in which can be very confusing and hard to understand.in the end it was all for the best!

  2. Very well said. The amazing thing about Rabbi kaszirer, his family, the rebbeim of his yeshiva, and the heilige askonim that are zoche to support the yeshiva is as follows. They ot only say the right things, but they truly mean the in their hearts and they practice what they preach.
    To Rabbi Kaszirer and the choshuv rabbonim and faculty of MOE – keep up the avodas hakodesh that you are all involved with.
    To the buchrim of MOE (past, present, and future)- you are very forunate to have the tremendous opportunities and experiences provided to you by hkb”h with the staff of moe serving as shluchim. Don’t take it for granted.
    To klal yisroel – supporting this amazsingy successful mosad that has, does, and will coninue to have an incredibly positive hashpa on seemingly fragile yiddishe neshamos is a tremendous zchus. If you agree with what is stated in this article – then put your time, support, money, or kochos where your heart and brain are. Support this amazing organization.

  3. once again r’ kaszirer from MOE shows us how a true mechanech is supposed to think AND act. those that know him are aware that that is exactly the way he deals with his bochurim in MESIVTA OF EATONTOWN. Hence the amazing success he has in his yeshiva.
    keep up the amazing work!!!

  4. To #6

    Mesivta of Eatontown is a Yeshivah high school that is dedicated to the success of bachurim that are vulnerable and at risk of falling out of the Yeshiva system.

    They saved my sons life!!

  5. Beautiful!!! Eatontown made me the person I am today without it I would be lost i just want to take this opportunity to publicly thank the rosh yeshiva and all the other fully dedicated rebbeim!! P.S this article is a perfect example of what we get taught in EATONTOWN

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