It is customary that one who was miraculously saved from death acknowledge G-d's kindness by making a celebratory meal (Seudat Hoda'ah). See here, here, and the Chayei Adam 154:41

Does anyone discuss the proper conduct when one was saved, but others weren't as fortunate? Should the celebration be subdued or limited? Done privately?

If so, does this limitation fade away over time?

Note that in the personal story the Chayei Adam brings, his family was miraculously spared from a fire, but 31 other people died. Part of his celebration involved slow prayer and fasting. However, I don't think that was in mourning for the victims as much as it was to make sure the celebration had the proper tone.

  • Think about the Medrash with the מלאכים by קריית ים סוף....though that's not the kind of source that you're looking for.
    – MTL
    Commented Dec 3, 2014 at 4:46
  • noah brought some sacrifices after leaving the ark
    – ray
    Commented Dec 3, 2014 at 7:19
  • @ray No proof from there, because there weren't other people around.
    – Scimonster
    Commented Dec 3, 2014 at 7:45
  • @Scimonster isnt that what he is asking?
    – ray
    Commented Dec 3, 2014 at 11:28
  • @Scimonster Ray has a good point -- by Noach, everyone died except for him and his family.
    – MTL
    Commented Dec 3, 2014 at 14:24

1 Answer 1


The Yosef Lekech on Megillas Esther addresses your question. He asks why we don't celebrate Chanukah with "mishteh v'simcha" (joyful partying) like we celebrate Purim. He answers that by Chanukah, unlike by Purim, there were casualties. While Hallel and thanksgiving are appropriate in recognition of the great salvation Hashem wrought, joyful partying would be inappropriate in the face of the cost of that very salvation. My teacher brought down the Chazal, "Lo sasti b'takalas chaveiri" - I never rejoiced in my friend's downfall - to mean that even if I had my own good reason to rejoice, I would not do so during my friend's sorrow.

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