Growing In Ruchniyut During The Three Weeks

26 07 2011

Based on a Naaleh.com shiur by Rabbi Beinush Ginsurg

Growing in Ruchniyus During the Three WeeksWhen we visualize the Beit Hamikdash in its glory, we imagine there was nothing holier than it. Yet Chazal tell us that studying Torah is even greater. “Hashem consoled David who did not merit to build the Beit Hamikdash, “One day of Torah learning in your courtyard is greater in my eyes than one thousand sacrifices.” Similarly David said, “Tov li Torahat picha…” David gathered great quantities of precious metal for the Beit Hamikdash yet he affirmed that Torah was worth more to him than thousands of pieces of gold and silver. Additionally Chazal tell us, “The Torah study of children may not cease even to build the Beit Hamikdash.”

Bitul Torah was the cause of the first exile. It says, “Im bechukosai teileichu.” Rashi explains, “Shetihiyu ameilim b’Torah,” If we immerse ourselves in Torah we will merit blessings, if not, klalot (curses) will come upon us. The Ramban says that the tochacha of Bechukosai corresponds to the first Beit Hamikdash and the tochacha of Ki Tovo corresponds to the second Beit Hamikdash. We can understand from this Rashi and the Ramban that the first Beit Hamikdash was destroyed because of a weakening in Torah study.

In Eicha it says,”Her kings and her priests are exiled among the gentiles and there is no Torah.” Rav Dessler lived in England and in his later years settled in Eretz Yisrael. He once said that a day of Torah study in Eretz Yisrael could not equal many days of learning in chutz l’aaretz. Indeed Chazal say, “There is no Torah like the Torah of Eretz Yisrael.” The Gra writes that exile lacks the special spiritual aura of Eretz Yisrael. We end Shemone Esrei with a prayer to rebuild the Beit Hamikdash and we add “Give us a portion in your Torah.” The Gra explains that the sufferings of exile weakened our Torah study. Therefore we ask Hashem to restore the Beit Hamikdash so that we can once again serve Him with all our capacities in Eretz Yisrael.

Let us dedicate ourselves with new vigor to the study of Torah in an attempt to rectify the misdeeds of the past and merit the ultimate redemption.

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