Rabbi Elazar ben Arach

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Rebbe Eleazar ben Arach
Rabbi Eleazar ben Arach
רבי אלעזר בן ערך
Elazar, Eleazar, Arak
Other Names:
Rabbi Nehorai, (Elazar HaKalir), The Overflowing Fountain
Alama, Northern Israel
15th of Iyyar
A second generation Tana and student of Rabbi Yochanan ben Zakai.

Rabbi Eleazar ben Arach was one of the five main students of Rabbi Yochanan be Zaci, living at the time of the destruction of the Second Temple. Rabbi Elazar Ben Arach is buried in the village of Alama in Northern Israel.


[edit] Student of Rabbi Yochanan

Rabbi Elazar ben Arach was one of the five main students of Rabbi Yochanan ben Zakkai which included Rabbi Eliezer ben Hurkenus, Rabbi Yehoshua ben Chananya, Rabbi Shimon ben Netanel and Rabbi Yossi Hakohen. His teacher praised him calling him an ever-increasing spring. Abba Shaul said in the name of Rabbi Yochanan; if all the Sages were on one side of a balance-scale including Eliezer ben Hurkenus, and Elazar ben Arach on the other side, he would outweigh them all.

When Rabbi Yochanan asked his students to choose the best trait for a person to acquire, Rabbi Elazar replied "a good heart". When he once again requested them to list the worst trait that a person should most distance himself from, Rabbi Elazar replied "an evil heart". Rabbi Yochanan declared that he liked Rabbi Elazar's answered above the rest of the student's since his words included all their's.

[edit] Diomses

After the passing of his teacher Rabbi Yochanan, Rabbi Elazar Ben Arach moved to Diomses at the urging of his wife who was attracted to the city's gardens and rivers. Soon realizing the lack of Torah scholars in the city, Rabbi Elazar ben Arach wanted to go back and join all his friends that had remained in Yavneh. His wife insisted that he remain in Diomses, stating that since he was greater then his friends it was appropriate that they come to him, rather then he go to them. She gave an example "The mice and the cheese, who goes to who, the mice go to the cheese". Rabbi Elazar ben Arach listened to his wife, remaining in Diomses and over time forgetting all his Torah learning.

Once, Rabbi Elazar ben Arach returned to his former city and was honored with the reading of the Torah. When he reached the words החודש הזה לכם he read them החרש היה לבם. His friends and student realized that he had forgotten his learning. They prayed for him and Eliyahu Hanavi came to him and reinstated all his former Torah.

[edit] Teachings

Be diligent in the study of Torah. Know what to answer a heretic. And know before whom you toil, and who is your employer who will repay you the reward of your labors.

[edit] Prayer of Rabbi Elazar ben Arach

There is an ancient prayer attributed to Rabbi Elazar ben Arach which according to tradition was first discovered in the tombs of Chevron. This prayer is composed of 26 segments, lining up with the numerical equivalence of the Tetragamaton. Each segment beseeches G-D to have mercy in merit of a certain element of the Jewish nation. Many of the segments invoke the merit of past or future songs.

[edit] Kever Rabbi Elazar ben Arach

Rabbi Elazar ben Arach is buried in the village of Alama in Northern Israel. Right in the vicinity of his Kever are the Kevarim of Rabbi Elazar ben Azariah, Rabbi Azariah, Rabbi Shimon ben Netanel, Rabbi Yossi Hakohen and according to some opinions also Rabbi Eliezer ben Hurkanus.

[edit] Hillulah of Rabbi Elazar ben Arach

Although the actual Yortziet of Rabbi Elazar ben Arach is unknown, local residents of the area celebrate the Hillulah on the 15th of Iyyar. Later they added Rabbi Yossi Hakohen and Rabbi Eleazar ben Azariah to the hillula of the day.

[edit] Directions

Geographic Coordinates

  • Latitude: 33.054456
  • Longitude: 35.490228

[edit] More Photos

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