Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Never Forget the Tachlis

It was motzei Shabbos and Rav Yosef Dov Soleveitchik, zt”l, known by most simply as “the Rav,” needed a minyan for ma’ariv. He wandered into a Modzhitzer shtiebl where, despite the lateness of the hour, the chassidim were singing with intense dveikus. After waiting a time he asked when they would daven ma’ariv. “What, you want to bring in the week already?” was the indignant reply.
The Modzhitzer chassidim worked hard for their livelihood often with physical labor, as water carriers and the like. It would certainly be fair to wonder where they got the strength to be so involved in spirituality despite their heavy involvement in materialism the entire week. The following words of the Divrei Yisrael of Modzhitz, zt”l, answers sheds light on the question. “The olah offering represents Torah and prayer, as we can learn from Menachos 110. It is kodshei kodshim, unlike the shelamim which is kodshim kalim and alludes to making a living. Through this we can understand the Mishnah we say during davening that Shelamim are kodshim kalim and their blood must be applied in a double application that is really four. The word damim, blood, can also refer to money. One must work and make money to enable him to learn Torah and daven, both of which are double-fold. Torah is doubled because there are two elements to Torah—written and oral—and they each contain both positive and negative mitzvos. Prayer is also doubled since we daven day and night. These are the two applications that are four to which we must apply our money.
“We must know that the time we spend learning and davening does not cause us a financial loss since the purpose of working is to learn and daven!”

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