A Short Tribute

A Short Tribute

Hacham Yehezkel Ezra Halevy, son of Yehoshua, was born in Baghdad, Iraq in 1852. He studied at the Beit Zalicha rabbinic study house and was the student of Hacham Bashi Hacham Yitzhak, son of Hacham Abraham Shlomo.

In 1890, he immigrated to the Land of Israel and settled in Jerusalem, where he became involved in public welfare. He established the Shoshanim LeDavid yeshiva for the Babylonian Jewish community, traveled as an emissary to the Baghdad community to raise money, and was the Babylonian Jewish community's representative for the British government.

Hacham Yehezkel Ezra Halevy passed away in Jerusalem on 3 Tevet, 5701 (1941) and was buried on the Mount of Olives.

Among his works one counts a commentary on HaZa"L legends entitled Arugim HaBossem, Tehila VeTiferet - a commentary on the Psalms, an essay on HAAR"I's Tikunei Teshuva entitled Pitchei Teshuva, and a commentary on the Passover Haggadah, entitled Simchat Yom Tov.

Love of Israel
A few quotes from the Rabbi on 'Love of Israel'
in which he clarifies that a prayer recited for a friend is remembered in times of need

"Yet, when they were ill, my dress was sackcloth, I kept a fast— may what I prayed for happen to me!" Question: If the prayer is returned to the person, it would appear to not have been accepted. Why, then, should the person pray? But according to the introduction of Rabbi Yehuda the Righteous, of blessed memory, this can be clarified. If a person's friend becomes ill, Heaven forbid, the person must pray for the friend. If the prayers are answered, that is best. But if it is not, when that person encounters similar troubles, the person's compassion in praying for a friend is remembered, and the person is healed. This corresponds with the text, "Yet, when they were ill, my dress was sackcloth, I kept a fast". If you say, 'What if it is a decree that will not be annulled, how can prayer help?' the reply follows, "May what I prayed for happen to me". When I need Heaven's compassion, my prayer for a friend will be remembered, and I will be treated with compassion.

Tehila VeTiferet, Psalms 35, "When they were ill", p. 105 – 107, published by Abraham Moshe, Jerusalem 1971