“Eluuul” Zeman is Here: Make the Most of It


davening-learningAll the baalei mussar discuss learning “b’retzifus,” meaning without interruption. Not because of the few moments of batala when you take your break and indulge in idle chatter and the like, but rather because it makes all the difference in your learning when you resume. We can explain this with a moshol.

When a person needs to get somewhere and he walks there, every time he stops for a moment, it delays his arrival by the amount of time he stopped. But imagine blasting off in rocket ship to get to the moon. Once you stop the engines, you will fall back to earth. You can’t just turn them back on and resume your journey.

To borrow a vort from Rav Shimshon Pincus, the Gemara says that in one pasuk it says that Adam Harishon’s height was from one end of the earth to the other. Another pasuk says that his height was from earth all the way to heaven. The Gemara answers that these two distances are the same. Rav Pincus says that this Gemara means that a person can use his intellect to climd to Shamayim and reach all the way to the Kisei Hakavod or he can use his intellect to involve himself in earthly matters knowing what’s going on all over the planet.

Similarly, there are two kinds of learning. One learning is to know the material to be knowledgeable for whatever reason. From this perspective, your Torah is just worldly knowledge for worldly gains. Taking a break will only delay your progress momentarily until you resume your “studies.” Another kind of learning, Torah lishmah, real learning, is to be close to Hashem. It is the vehicle with which a human can connect to his Creator. With every word we learn, we climb higher and get closer to Hashem. When this kind of learning is disrupted to discuss an earthly matter, we are right back down where we started from whether ten minutes ago, a half hour or two hours ago. We can’t just resume; we need to start our ascent all over again from ground zero.

Whether you are a baal habayis who is kovei’a itim or a yeshiva bochur or yungerman in the bais medrash, when taking an otherworldly trip through the galaxies of Torah, don’t come back every second. Keep on going further and further and don’t stop until you arrive, or else you never will.

{Revach.net, Dovid Bernstein-Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. “But imagine blasting off in rocket ship to get to the moon. Once you stop the engines, you will fall back to earth. ”

    Bad moshol, because it’s not true once you leave earth orbit.