This week’s Parsha is Parshas Behaaloscha. The Parsha ends with the episode of Lashan Hara – when Miriam, the sister of Moses, spoke against him. This prohibition is called Lashan Hora. A Jew is not allowed to speak bad about someone else. For saying bad about Moses, Miriam was punished with the affliction known as Tzaraas, where she was sent out of the Jewish camp for a full week. When the Torah tells us of the sin that Miriam did by speaking badly about Moses, it adds the following verse: “And the man Moses was more humble than any other person upon the earth”. (Numbers 12:3) Why is this verse here? Couldn’t the Torah have found another place to talk about the greatness of Moses? Is this connected to the story of the Tzaraas of Miriam? Maimonides explains that the Torah wanted to show us how severe the prohibition of speaking Loshon Hora, bad about another person, is. Even though Moses was the most humble of men, and didn’t really care if someone spoke bad about him, Miriam was still punished for saying Lashan Hara about him. Humility is one trait that we are taught is an exception to the general rules of our behavior. Usually we are taught that a person should conduct themselves in the middle of the road, not extreme in any way. With humility, however, a person is supposed to run away from haughtiness and search to be humble, with all their power. At the time that the Shulchan Aruch (Code of Jewish Law) was written, we are told that there were two other great Scholars who were fit to write such a work. One of them was so great that he studied 18 hours a day!! Never the less, the person chosen for the job was the famous Rabbi Yosef Kairo. Why did he have the merit more than any one else to be chosen for this task? Tradition has it, that it was all because of the great humility that Rabbi Kairo had. How could Moses write in the Torah that he was the most humble of all men? Is that humble? Our definition of humility clearly needs a little improvement: Humility doesn’t mean to not realize our positive accomplishments and / or potential; What it means is to realize and to really feel, that what ever we have done does not make us better than someone else: We can never know who is using more of their potential, ourselves or another human being. Namanidies writes in his famous letter, we must look at every person who we meet as though they are greater than us – for in some way they may have used their talents to serve Hashem in a better way than we have. This is how Moses, greatest Prophet of all time, was able to also be the most humble of people on the Planet earth.