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Parshas Tazria - Metzora

The Lessons of the Birds
If a person spoke lashon hora they would incur a skin disease called Tzoraas which is a combination of the word Motze Rah "one who brings forth evil" The Kohen shall command the person being purified to take two live birds ". {Chapter 14-4} Rashi explains birds are brought because his affliction came as the result for the chatter of gossip and slander similar to the chirping of birds. Our Sages explain the reason two birds are brought is one for the evil talk lashon hora which was spoken and one to atone for the loshon tov the words of comfort which were not spoken. There are many references in the Torah regarding proper speech. The main excuse people have when speaking loshon hora is its only words and words are not harmful! That is why Shlomo Hamelech says "death and life are in the hands of the tongue" In the book of Koheles it is written "be careful with your words for birds shall carry your words and it will be revealed." "One who watches his mouth and tongue guards his soul from troubles." (Mishlei) Rabbi Shimon Ben Gamliel says "all my life I grew up among scholars and I did not find anything as beneficial to the body as silence."
As we count the days of Sefirah we should make "Our days count" with proper speech words of Torah and blessings. The wordlev tov - good heart has the numerical value of forty nine representing the forty nine days of the Omer.
May these days give us much Nechama and Simchas
Shabbat Shalom and Chodesh Tov
Rabbi Yisroel