In preparation for Shavuos, we are presenting a review of three of our Ahavah Rabah segments (This is the second of three). We will return, b’ezras Hashem, to learning Az Yashir after Shavuos.
A Plea for Passion
V’sein b’libeinu l’havin u’l’haskil, lishmoa, lilmod, u’l’lameid
Instill in our hearts to understand and to elucidate, to listen, to learn, and to teach…
Rav Chaim Friedlander zt”l (Rinas Chaim) and Rav Avigdor Miller zt”l (Tefilas Avigdor) explain that the words “v’sein b’libeinu” apply to all the requests that follow. We ask Hashem to place in our hearts (and in our children’s hearts) the desire to want to internalize and to clarify, to accept, to learn and to teach Torah.
How can we ask Hashem to place in our hearts the desire to want all of these spiritual requests? Isn’t that our job? We know that while results are completely in Hashem’s domain, our role is creating the desire and putting forth effort, even in ruchniyus – spiritual matters. Why are we asking Hashem to do what we are obligated to do?
The answer is that we need to acknowledge that we need Hashem’s help to accomplish anything, even the desire and effort, which is our role and responsibility. We need siyata diShmaya, heavenly assistance, in every step of our lives. Therefore, not only do we ask for success, but we ask here also for Hashem’s assistance in desiring all these steps of serving Him through internalizing, learning, teaching, and living Torah with love.
We will briefly explain the words in this beautiful request, based on the explanations of HaRav Friedlander (Rinas Chaim) and HaRav Miller (Tefilas Avigdor). We preface each of the statements below with, “We ask You, Hashem, to place in our hearts (and in our children’s hearts) the desire:
l’havin – to focus on the depth of Torah and place it deeply into our hearts;
l’haskil – to understand and internalize the Torah so clearly within our hearts that its teachings become like a simple, straightforward matter to us, and thereby guide our every thought, speech, and action;
lishmoa – to accept guidance from our rav, rebbeim, parents, and others;
lilmod – to toil in Torah, learn with hasmadah, and grasp quickly;
l’lameid – to have the ability and the z’chus to teach Torah. One who loves Torah is not satisfied just to learn but wants others to learn as well. His own learning is with the mindset of teaching and living Torah.
Let us remember the Chofetz Chaim’s advice of also davening in this brachah for our children.
Integrating Mitzvos into Our Daily Lives
The mitzvos of learning and teaching Torah are equal to all the mitzvos combined. Each word of Torah is a separate mitzvah.
There is a mitzvah to teach Torah to our children, grandchildren, and students. While we learn Torah, we can also fulfill the mitzvos of V’ahavta L’Rei’acha Kamocha and g’milas chesed, since our Torah learning creates brachah, protection, healing, and salvation for the world. When we teach, we are also performing a great chesed directly for those people we are teaching. We also fulfill the mitzvah of V’halachta Bi’Drachav, emulating Hashem’s Ways, since Hashem teaches Torah to the Jewish People, as we state in the Birkas HaTorah each morning.
We do not need to be a rebbe in order to teach Torah. Any time we are with others and share a Torah thought, we are teaching Torah. When we share Torah with another person for just a couple of minutes at a gathering or in a car, we perform hundreds of mitzvos of the highest caliber, we bring brachah to the world, and we come closer to Hashem and to the person with whom we are sharing the Torah.
We also have the opportunity to teach Torah by living Torah. When we follow halachah and behave in a manner befitting Torah Jews, modeling exemplary midos, we are teaching Torah as well.
Let us seize these precious opportunities.
To access Audio, Video, and Archives of previous Tefilah segments, please visit www.WeeklyTefilahFocus.com.
You can direct any questions or comments to Eliezer Szrolovits at 917-551-0150.