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Publisher's Foreword

Kol Yisrael - The Opening Mishna before every Chapter

Chapter One

   Chapter One - Mishna 1

Chapter One - Mishna 2

Chapter One - Mishna 3

Chapter One - Mishna 4

Chapter One - Mishna 5

Chapter One - Mishna 6

Chapter One - Mishna 7

Chapter One - Mishna 8

Chapter One - Mishna 9

Chapter One - Mishna 10

Chapter One - Mishna 11

Chapter One - Mishna 12

Chapter One - Mishna 13

Chapter One - Mishna 14

Chapter One - Mishna 15

Chapter One - Mishna 16

Chapter One - Mishna 17

Chapter One - Mishna 18

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Rabbi Chanaya ben Akashya - The Closing after each Chapter

Founders Of Chassidism & Leaders Of Chabad Lubavitch


In The Paths of Our Fathers
Insights Into Pirkei Avos,
Adapted From The Works of The Lubavitcher Rebbe,
Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson Shlita

Chapter One - Mishna 4

by Rabbi Eliyahu Touger

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Yosay Ben Yoezer Of Tzredah And Yosay Ben Yochanan Of Jerusalem Received [The Oral Tradition] From Them. Yosay Ben Yoezer Of Tzredah Said: "Let Your House Be A Meeting Place For Sages; Sit In The Dust At Their Feet, And Drink In Their Words Thirstily."

Let Your House Be A Meeting Place For Sages

One's dwelling should continually serve this function, to the extent that it defines the nature of the home. Then, even when the Sages are not present, their influence will continue to affect the events that transpire within.

(Sichos Shabbos Parshas Acharei, 5722)

Sit In The Dust At Their Feet

It is possible that a person will become proud that sages frequent his home. Therefore, the mishnah emphasizes the importance of conducting oneself with humility.

(Sichos Shabbos Parshas Acharei, 5722)

Alternatively, the term "dust at their feet" can be interpreted figuratively. "Feet" can refer to the sages' students, and "dust" to negative attributes.

During the time of Yosay ben Yoezer, gaps appeared in the chain of tradition and differences of opinion arose between the Sages.[21] When this happens, it is natural for "dust to be stirred up" by their students, as each tries to argue the virtues of his own teacher's position. The mishnah teaches that one should "Sit... at their feet," and "drink in their words," for by patiently opening oneself to the teachings of the sages themselves, one will offset any negative influence that might be generated by the "dust" of their students.

(Sichos Motzoei Shabbos Parshas Matos-Masei, 5739)



  1. (Back to text) See Tosafos, Chagigah 16a, the gloss of Tosafos Yom Tov to this mishnah.

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     Sichos In English -> Books -> Other -> In The Paths of Our Fathers

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