Conflict for the Sake of Heaven
In Pirkei Avot, Chapter 5, Mishna 20 we read:


Every controversy which is for the sake of Heaven will endure in the end; and every one which is not for the sake of Heaven will not endure. Which is a controversy for the sake of Heaven? Such was the conflict of Hillel and Shammai. And which is not for the sake of Heaven? Such was the conflict of Korach and his entire assemblage.


What was special about the controversy of Hillel and Shammai?


For two and a half years the schools of Hillel and Shammai debated, each claiming “The Halacha is as we teach.” A heavenly echo then said “Both these and these are the words of the Living God; but the Halacha follows the school of Hillel.” Why did the school of Hillel have the law established the way that they taught? Because they were humble and taught both their views as well as the views of the house of Shammai.


Although we follow Halacha according to Beit Hillel, the teachings or Beit Shammai are alive as well since when we study the Halacha we respectfully mention what was taught by Beit Shammai as well.


A well known example would be the Halachot for lighting Chanukah candles. Beit Shammai says to light all of the candles on the first night of the holiday and remove one each night. Beit Hillel says to light one on the first night and add an additional one each night since we should always “go up in holiness”. Even though we follow Beit Hillel, we still study Beit Shammai’s teachings each year as well.


We can learn from the disputes of Beit Hillel and Beit Shammai that if something is “for the sake of Heaven”, within the realm of Halacha, one has the right to voice his opinion and others have the right to respectfully disagree.


Korach on the other hand was looking to pick a fight. He came to rebel against Moshe and seek honor. What he was doing was for his own sake, not for the sake of Heaven.


According to Midrash Tanchuma, the reason that the mishna talks about the conflict between Korach and his assemblage and not the conflict between Korach and Moshe was because Korach couldn’t even get along with his own assemblage. There were 250 men in his group and they each were out for themselves, each of them wanted to be the Kohen Gadol (High Priest)!


We see from here that discussion is healthy as long as it is for the sake of Heaven.