<i>Tzav</i>: Learning and Doing

The Maharal (Tiferet Yisrael, ch. 70) explains that a sacrifice elevates man beyond the purely material, animalistic dimension of his existence, thus bringing him closer to G-d.

Aloh Naaleh,

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Arutz 7
In introducing the law of the chatas offering (Leviticus 6:18) and the asham offering (Leviticus 7:1), the expressions "zot Torat hachatat" and "zot Torat haasham" are used. The Gemara (Babylonian Talmud, Menachot 110a) explains that one who studies the laws of these sacrifices is equated with one who actually brings them.

We don't find this equation with any of the other mitzvot. Why is it true for sacrifices?

The Maharal (Tiferet Yisrael, ch. 70) explains that a sacrifice elevates man beyond the purely material, animalistic dimension of his existence, thus bringing him closer to G-d. The study of Torah, which is Divine wisdom, has this elevating power. So, when man is unable to actually bring a sacrifice, he can achieve similar results through the Torah study of that sacrifice.

The Maharal teaches in numerous places that Eretz Yisrael is a land that transcends the purely material dimension of existence, which is why living here brings man closer to G-d. If one is not able to actually fulfill the mitzvah of living here, then Torah study of the laws of that mitzvah should provide some compensation for what is lost by living outside of Eretz Yisrael. And as the study of those laws elevates man above the purely material dimension of existence, he may find the barriers preventing him from living in Israel aren't as insurmountable as they originally seemed.
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Rabbi Shaya Karlinsky is the Dean of Yeshivat Darche Noam/David Shapell College of Jewish Studies and Midreshet Rachel College of Jewish Studies for Women in Jerusalem. The schools' student bodies are composed of English-speaking college graduates and young professionals, and nearly 40% of the graduates have settled in Israel. Rabbi Karlinsky studied in Yeshivat Kerem B'Yavneh and Mir, received S'micha from ITRI, and a Master's Degree in Educational Psychology from Temple University, Philadelphia. He and his wife have been living in Jerusalem for almost 35 years, and they have six children and even more grandchildren.



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