Revenge - ð÷îä
Group Size: 10-45
Estimated Time: 45 minutes
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Teach the chanichim about the Torah’s definition of Nekama and have them question how they could reduce their own personal desire for Nekama
Background: Revenge (Nekama) is defined as “inflicting punishment in return for injury or insult.” The makor in the Torah for this is in Vayikra 19:18 – “Lo Takum v’Lo Titor et bnei amecha, v’Ahavta L’reacha kamocha, ani Hashem.”
Two different terms are introduced by the pasuk: Nekama and Netira. The Gemara in Yoma 23a defines these two concepts. Nekama is understood as actually perpertrating an ACT of revenge. (No I will not lend you my book, you didn’t lend me yours last week.) Netira is a more subtle form of revenge. Even though youd do not goas far as committing an act, you still express your vengeful feelings and that, according to the Torah standards, still constitutes revenge. (Yes I will lend you my book, even though last week you wouldn’t lend me yours.)
Revenge is usually seen in cases dealing with money, possessions or goods. Revenge, however, can become an all-consuming emotion which, like jealousy, can lead to even more serious crimes. As the Kli Yakar states, a person must train himself to realize that world’s possessions are not that important that a person should fill himself with a desire to avenge any act committed against him. Anyone with a clear outlook on life will realize that deeds committed your possessions, although unpleasant and upsetting, have no real lasting effect on your spiritual realm.
Revenge is one of those emotions that unfortunately becomes entrenched in our personalities at a very young age. How many times do we find ourselves doing things to spite others? It is a character trait of Bein Adam L’chavero that is important to address.
General Instructions: We will be playing a number of unrelated games in this week’s snif. They will all be team games, and it is important to keep the same teams for the whole snif. In addition, you should stop each game before both teams get equal chances. For example, either stop it quickly after one team takes an early lead, or if it is a game done in rounds, only give one team a chance, or give one team more chances than the other. The goal here is to insight the chanichim to complain that they didn’t have an equal chance.
Game 1: Bottle Ball
Divide the chanichim into two teams. Send each team to opposite sides of the room. Three players from each team are the goalies, while the rest of the players are the shooters. The end players must guard the back, stopping shots from reaching the endzone (or hitting the wall, depending on your arrangement) and from knocking over bottles. Arrange 6 bottles on each side, with pairs of two a foot and a half apart. 2 liter bottles work the best. Play with a couple nerf balls. The shooters attempt to score points by throwing/rolling the balls at the bottles or across the endzone. The goalies try and stop these balls. Points are scored as follows: 5 for each bottle knocked down, 10 for each shot that goes between bottles, and 1 for each ball that crosses the line. Only shots that are on the ground when they cross the line count.
Game 2: Sock Ball
This game is a version of baseball. However, the twist is that all equipment is made of socks. Stuff a long tube sock full of socks to make a bat and stuff a smaller sock to make a ball. Everyone must play in their socks. Use the same two teams. Set up ground rules as necessary for your space. Remember to stop the game at an uneven time, perhaps in the middle of an inning. Or even better, at the start of an inning when one team is losing by a bit. Hopefully they will complain either way about wanting another chance.
Discussion: Hopefully these two games will have generated some competitive feelings and the losing team wanted to continue. After they fight for a while, stop and demonstrate to them that this is a symbol of wanting to get back at the other team. They want to avenge their loss. Ask them what the nature of revenge is, its ramifications and effects on people.
Game 3: Elimination
We will be playing this game like Elimination, with one variation – once someone is out, they stay out. (So there is no particular reason to cheer for someone to get the person who got you out.) Everyone plays for themselves. One ball is thrown into the playing area. Anyone can pick it up and throw it at someone else. If the person is hit (below the head), he is out. If, however, the ball is caught, the person who threw it is out. Last one standing wins.
Discussion: Once again, we hopefully saw some people cheering for the person who got them to get out, even though it wouldn’t let them back in the game. Ask the chanichim if anyone did this, and why. Ask them how they think they can work on controlling their urges for Nekama.