By: L. Halevi
Why do people talk in shul during davening?
Why do otherwise decent, Shomrei Torah U’Mitzvos flippantly transgress this sin, which the Shulchan Aruch describes in less than glowing terms, to put it mildly, as too big a sin to handle?
The simple answer is a simple lack of education, lack of inspiration, lack of proper understanding of its severity.
The ‘Stop the Talking in Shul’ campaign was launched with the express mission of bringing this issue to the forefront. A tremendously successful campaign – including videos of Rabbanim discussing the harshness of this Aveira, print and online advertisements, the distribution of beautifully designed shul cards in Lucite holders to shuls across the globe, and other modern means of disseminating the all-important message – have been employed, resulting in nothing less than a positive revolution.
Hundreds of Shuls are participating. Thousands of Yidden have accepted upon themselves to be more careful with this matter. Gabbaim in shuls can’t refill the Lucite holders with cards fast enough, and are always requesting refills from the organizers of the campaign.
As much as the campaign has been successful, it is just getting started. The goal is to reach more shuls, more Jews, more schools, and totally transform our shuls into properly respected sanctuaries, where the only talking going on is us talking to Hashem, and where the only things we focus on is the palpable presence of the Shechina, which only rests upon congregations who respect its presence, namely by not talking mundane matters during davening.
In order to take the campaign to the next level, a massive Asifah is being planned on the Yahrtzeit of the holy Tosfos Yom Tov, the sixteenth century Tzadik renowned for accentuating the importance of not talking during davening, and the author of the famous Mi Shebairach blessing those who abstain from talking during davening.
This Asifah will be broadcasted here on Matzav, live. The historic event will take place on Monday, August 28, 2017, at the Ateres Avrohom ballroom in Brooklyn, NY.
Many powerful speakers will grace the event, including, via live satellite from Yerushalayim, Rav Gamliel Rabinowitz Shlita, and Divrei Hisorerus from Rav Yitzchok Sorotzkin Shlita, and a speech about the life and legacy of the Tosfos Yom Tov by Rav Noach Isaac Oelbaum Shlita.
May we merit that very soon when the question is posed, “Why do people talk in shul during davening?”, the answer will be a resounding “ They don’t!”