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Shabbat Parashat Vayikra | 5769
Learning From the Divine Example, Immediate Vs Eternal Needs, Emotional and Intellectual Prayer
Learning From the Divine Example
(based on Ein Ayah, Berachot 1:135)
Gemara: [There are five similarities between a soul and Hashem: they, respectively, fill the body/ world; they see and are not seen; they nourish their environs; they are pure; they sit in an inner place.] “That which has these five qualities should praise He Who has these five qualities.”
Ein Ayah: The main purpose of praise is to bear fruit. This occurs by the one who praises desiring to cling to Hashem’s straight ways. Therefore, if the soul did not have any of the same characteristics as Hashem that are said in the praise, it would not have received the same type of benefit from praising because it would not have had the possibility of being similar to its Maker. However, since the soul has powers that resemble Hashem’s powers, when it praises its Maker, it adds strength to recognize His greatness and the completeness of His leadership. This adds blessing to the soul’s leadership of the body similar to Hashem’s leadership of His world.
Immediate Vs Eternal Needs
(based on Ein Ayah, Berachot 1:137)
Gemara: [Yeshaya told Chizkiya, a righteous king, that he was going to die in this world and be excluded from the world to come. Chizkiya enquired why he deserved such a strong punishment.] “Because you did not take part in procreation.” Chizkiya explained: “It is because I saw in ruach hakodesh (Divine revelation) that bad children will come from me.” Yeshaya responded: “What do you have to do with Hashem’s secrets?”
Ein Ayah: Chizkiya, who, as a king, was concerned with the present, feared for the nation’s present situation. He saw, with the spirit of Hashem he possessed, that if he would beget children, they would be destructive, which would cause much destruction if they would sit on the throne.
However, Yeshaya said to him: “What do you have to do with Hashem’s secrets?” The significance of these words is as follows. Prophecy looks at the eternal situation of the nation, in regard to which the days of one generation are not considered to have much importance. If the chain of kingdom would be stopped and leave the ruling family, this could cause an eternal fall. In contrast, the stumbling block that could be caused by one wicked king who emanated from the seed that Hashem chose would pass because, at the end, the seat would be set on the base of justice and straightness. Therefore, Yeshaya was telling Chizkiya that he had no right to interrupt the eternal dynasty due to a temporary vision that appeared to him in ruach hakodesh.
Emotional and Intellectual Prayer
(based on Ein Ayah, Berachot 1:141)
Gemara: “Chizkiya turned his face to the wall and prayed” (Yeshaya 38:2). What is the wall? Rabbi Shimon ben Lakish said: from the walls of his heart.
Ein Ayah: There are prayers that come from an intellectual feeling. This occurs when the intellect looks at the crucial need to pray and recognizes prayer’s great value. Realize that the intellect is related to the spirit of the heart that dwells in the cavity of the heart. However, when one powerfully requests mercy, to the point that the physical powers are also moved by the emotion of prayer, and it turns out that the prayer works on the body and not only the soul, it is called a prayer from the wall of his heart. In other words, it does not come only from the cavity of the heart but also from the involvement of the flesh, as the pasuk says: “My heart and my flesh will sing out to the Living G-d” (Mishlei 27:22). (Mishlei 27:22).
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This edition of Hemdat Yamim is dedicated to the memory of
R ' Meir ben Yechezkel Shraga Brachfeld
Hemdat Yamim is endowed by
and Louis and Lillian Klein, z”l.