Get the best of Chabad.org content every week!
Find answers to fascinating Jewish questions, enjoy holiday tips and guides, read real-life stories and more!
ב"ה

Learning Pirkei Avot

Classes on “Ethics of the Fathers”

Introduction to Learning Pirkei Avot
Why the tractate in the Mishnah on ethics is called Avot or “Fathers”. Learn the distinction between law and beyond the law, and how this can be applied practically.
Every Jew Has a Share in the World to Come
The customary preamble to Pirkei Avot
Ethics and the Transmission of Torah
Learning Pirkei Avot: chapter 1, mishnah 1
The Three Pillars of the World
Learning Pirkei Avot: chapter 1, mishnah 2-3
“The world stands on three things: Torah, the service of G d, and deeds of kindness.” “Do not be as slaves who serve their master for the sake of reward...”
Make Your Home a Place of Torah and Hospitality
Learning Pirkei Avot: chapter 1, mishnah 4-5
“Let your home be a meeting place for the wise… Let your home be wide open, and let the poor be members of your household…”
A Spiritual Mentor and a Good Friend
Learning Pirkei Avot: chapter 1, mishnah 6
Make for yourself a rabbi, acquire for yourself a friend, and judge everyone favorably.
Distance Yourself from a Bad Neighbor
Learning Pirkei Avot: chapter 1, mishnah 7
“Distance yourself from a bad neighbor, do not cleave to a wicked person, and do not abandon belief in retribution.”
Guidance for Judges, Love Work and Abhor Power
Learning Pirkei Avot: chapter 1, mishnah 8-10
When sitting in judgment, do not act as a counselor-at-law. When the litigants stand before you, consider them both guilty… Increasingly cross-examine the witnesses… Love work, loath mastery over others, and don’t fraternize with the government.
Love and Pursue Peace Like Aaron
Learning Pirkei Avot: chapter 1, mishnah 11-12
"Scholars, be careful with your words. For you may be exiled to a place inhabited by evil elements who will distort your words to suit their negative purposes…Be of the disciples of Aaron: a lover of peace, a pursuer of peace, one who loves the creatures and draws them close to Torah."
Torah for Personal Gain & My Responsibility
Learning Pirkei Avot: chapter 1, mishnah 13-14
One who advances his name, destroys his name… If I am not for myself, who is for me? And if I am only for myself, what am I? And if not now, when?
Make Torah Your Focus
Learning Pirkei Avot: chapter 1, mishnah 14-15
Make your Torah study a permanent fixture of your life. Say little and do much. And receive every man with a pleasant countenance. Make for yourself a master; stay away from doubt; and do not accustom yourself to tithe by estimation.
Related Topics