I've heard in an online shiur from Rabbi Daniel Glatstein that the Chafetz Chaim wrote an explanation on the connection between honey and the Torah. Why is the Torah compared to honey, e.g., sweetness?

The Chafetz Chaim seems to explain that if you put bread into honey, it will eventually turn into honey (I do not know if there are scientific proofs for this though); even a pig will turn into honey. The Chafetz Chaim uses these examples to say that even if a pig can be turned into something sweet, so too does the Torah transform evil into good, and bitter to sweet.

The Chafetz Chaim, according to Rabbi Glatstein, says that the Torah can transform a rasha to a ish tzadik.

Where can this Chafetz Chaim be found and if he gives more explanations on this connection between sweetness of honey and the Torah? Please also provide an English translation if providing a larger piece of this Chafetz Chaim.

  • 1
    Some sources for you: Shach to Shulchan Aruch Yoreh Deah 84:12 s.k. 37 and Chasam Sofer's Toras Moshe I to Exodus 30:23
    – robev
    Commented May 11, 2023 at 19:57
  • This article brings something to that effect from the Beis Yisroel, but I don't think it's the Chofetz Chaim's.
    – shmosel
    Commented May 11, 2023 at 19:58
  • Here's the Rabbeinu Yonah referenced: sefaria.org/Rosh_on_Berakhot.6.35.1
    – shmosel
    Commented May 11, 2023 at 20:06
  • Re "Chafetz Chaim": AKA Chofetz Chaim and Hafetz Hayim. "The Sefer Chafetz Chaim ... is a book by Rabbi Yisrael Meir Kagan, who is also called "the Chofetz Chaim" after it." Commented May 12, 2023 at 12:55

1 Answer 1


It is in the Hakdama Rishona to his Likutei Halachos on Zevachim right in the beginning of the first paragraph

מה שכתוב ״ומתוקים מדבש״, כי ידוע שיש בטבע כח המתיקות גדול... עד שאם יפול בה איזה דבר לחם או בשר...במשך הזמן יתהפך הלחם והבשר לדבש... וזהו שאמר הכתוב שכח מתיקות התורה הוא גדול הרבה יותר מדבש... אפילו אם טבע נפשו היה מתחילה רע מאד, כח התורה מטהרתו ומקדישו ונהפך להיות איש אחר ממש.

And why does the text say "sweeter than honey?" Because it is known that in nature there exists a power to honey, that if an item like bread or wine falls into it, eventually they will transform into honey. And that is why the Torah describes the power of Torah as stronger than that of honey... Even if the person's nature was inherently evil, Torah turns them to be an entirely different person.

  • 1
    Great find - bekius embodied! Commented May 12, 2023 at 11:56
  • That's the one :). Thank you so much. Great find!
    – Shmuel
    Commented May 13, 2023 at 19:58

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .