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I heard that the Chasam Sofer says talmidei chachamim marbim shalom b'olam because God only puts in a limited amount of machlokess in the world. So when lamdanim use it up for torah discussion, then there is less left over for people to bicker. Is this citation traceable?

  • It is difficult to believe the Chasam Sofer said that exactly because people who have Bechira are the ones who put machlokes in the world. I heard a different (untraceable and dubious) version that the Chasam Sofer said that talmidei chachamim marbim shalom b'olam because all the Am Haartzim unite to hate and make fun of them together . I doubt he really said that either but I am reminded of it whenever I go on the online world. Particularly blogs. – Schmerel Feb 9 at 15:08
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It is found in his drashos, chelek 1, pg 183 second column, s.v. Vichein. See it here.

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EDIT

Here is another place in his drashos where he writes similarly, perhaps even closer to what the OP is looking for, pg 403b, s.v. Ubisof.

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    +1. Note that this is a little different from the OP's presentation of the idea. It seems like the Chasam Sofer is saying that individuals who do not study Torah (and thereby productively employ the trait of strife in their vigorous discussions of the material) will be drawn after mundane concerns and employ strife in a destructive and envious manner. Additionally, he says that strife (like any other human trait) must find an outlet in some form, and if it doesn't find a productive outlet it would find a destructive one. Not per se that there's a strictly fixed quantity of strife in the world. – Fred Feb 9 at 17:51
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    Certainly part of what he wrote is like you say, Fred, and for the most part I would agree with you. However, he does say that the world won't exist without strife, not simply that these people will find a different outlet as he had implied immediately beforehand. I think a resolution is that certain people are predisposed to fighting, and the world needs fighting. If those people aren't fighting Torah fights, they will fight non-Torah fights. However if for whatever reason they don't, I think Chassam Soffer would say other people would fill in with non-Torah fighting. – user6591 Feb 9 at 17:58
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    However, he does say that the world won't exist without strife Agreed. But it's not completely clear to me whether he is saying that necessarily "other people would fill in with non-Torah fighting" or that the selfsame people would. Additionally, it's not at all clear that the Chasam Sofer holds there is a specific fixed quantity of strife designated for the world (as stated by the OP). More likely it's simply that the world needs some strife, and generally speaking (but not per se bijectively) the more it is directed towards Torah study the less it is directed to destructive outlets. – Fred Feb 9 at 19:52
  • Agreed as well. I think with all these 'I heard x, where's the source?' questions, there must be an allowance given for variations due to whatever medium the idea was presented to the OP with without the actual source material presented. I know don't disagree with that. Just putting it out there. – user6591 Feb 9 at 21:46
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    there must be an allowance given for variations due to whatever medium the idea was presented to the OP with without the actual source material presented Absolutely. I just thought the difference was worth highlighting in this case. Anyway, I hope this back and forth reduces strife in the world. :) – Fred Feb 9 at 23:27

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