Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Hilchot Tshuva, Chapter 1, Halacha 1

Every year during Elul I try to work through a Tshuva text (often Rabeinu Yona’s Sharei Tshuva), but due to other distractions normally fail to make significant progress.

This year I thought that I’d try something a little different. Every day from now until Yom Kippur I will try to (bli Neder) post and translate a Halacha from Rambam’s Hilchot Tshuva.

I’m doing this primarily for myself. Hopefully the act of typing a translation will help me internalize the halacha, although I hope that it is also of benefit to others.

The translation is my own. I am not a language scholar or professional translator so I apologize for any inaccuracies in the translation. If you notice an error, please feel free to leave a comment.

So without further ado, here is Rambam’s Hilchot Tshuva:

הלכות תשובה

מצות עשה אחת, והיא שישוב החוטא מחטאו לפני ה', ויתוודה
וביאור מצוה זו ועיקרים הנגררים עימה בגללה, בפרקים אלו

The Laws or Tshuva (Repentance)

One positive Mitzva, and that is to return from a sin which you sinned before HaShem and to confess.
An explanation of this Mitzva, its principles, parameters, and what is included will be discussed in these chapters.

הלכות תשובה פרק א

א כָּל הַמִּצְווֹת שֶׁבַּתּוֹרָה, בֵּין עֲשֵׂה בֵּין לֹא תַעֲשֶׂה--אִם עָבַר אָדָם עַל אַחַת מֵהֶן, בֵּין בְּזָדוֹן בֵּין בִּשְׁגָגָה--כְּשֶׁיַּעֲשֶׂה תְּשׁוּבָה וְיָשׁוּב מֵחֶטְאוֹ, חַיָּב לְהִתְוַדּוֹת לִפְנֵי הָאֵ-ל בָּרוּךְ הוּא: שֶׁנֶּאֱמָר "אִישׁ אוֹ-אִשָּׁה כִּי יַעֲשׂוּ מִכָּל-חַטֹּאת הָאָדָם . . . וְהִתְוַדּוּ, אֶת-חַטָּאתָם אֲשֶׁר עָשׂוּ" (במדבר ה,ו-ז), זֶה וִדּוּי דְּבָרִים. וּוִדּוּי זֶה מִצְוַת עֲשֵׂה.

Hilchot Tshuva, Chapter 1

1 For all the Mitzvot in the Torah, whether positive or negative – if a person transgressed one of them, whether deliberately or inadvertently - he should do Tshuva and return from the sin. He is obligated to confess before G-d, Blessed is he as it is written: “If a man or woman if you transgress any sins of man … you should confess the sin which you did” (Numbers 5, 6-7). This is verbal confession. This confession is a positive commandment.

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