Friday, July 24, 2009

בְּעֵבֶר הַיַּרְדֵּן

אֵלֶּה הַדְּבָרִים, אֲשֶׁר דִּבֶּר מֹשֶׁה אֶל-כָּל-יִשְׂרָאֵל, בְּעֵבֶר הַיַּרְדֵּן

These are the words which Moshe spoke to all Israel on that side of the Jordan... (Devarim 1:1)

The Degel Machaneh Ephraim taught that the words בְּעֵבֶר הַיַּרְדֵּן refer to a person who perpetually views himself as if he was on the other side of the Jordan despite the fact that he continues to learn Torah and do mitzvos.

He must must always view himself on this other side since if he imagines that he has already entered the holy land and is close to Hashem, in reality he is very far away. If, however, he continues to make strides in his avodas Hashem, imagines that he has still not yet reached his final destination, and feels distant from Hashem, in reality he is not. Hashem is right there with him.


At July 24, 2009 at 10:23:00 AM EDT, Blogger AS said...

Great vort! On another note regarding your post on "already there" Judaism. I would think if one was "already there" and had no where to go you simply would not be"here" anymore. In other words once a person has fulfilled his purpose for being here he's ready to move to the next world.....just a thought.

At July 24, 2009 at 10:34:00 AM EDT, Blogger A Simple Jew said...

Thanks! I appreciate your thoughts.

BTW, this posting wasn't from the pre-written stockpile. I actually wrote it up yesterday based on the piece I learned with my Degel chavrusa.

At July 25, 2009 at 1:35:00 AM EDT, Anonymous yaakov said...

may i please tell you, with great respect to the degel...reb nachman said 'my place is only in israel'...i think we have to see ourselves IN the eretz kodesh. esp if we live in galut...we have to do all we can to go there, live there etc. and in the meantime..we have to do all we can to yearn to do so.
i think a major problem psychologically today with many people is that they see themselves 'on the other side'...
for the degel, as great as he was, this could work...but for me.. i have to go with reb nachman "my place is only in israel"...

At July 25, 2009 at 3:57:00 PM EDT, Blogger Yosef said...

Rabbi Nachman also said,
"If I was today on the same level I was on yesterday, I would be totally disgusted with myself", which I think conveys the same message. The message of constantly yearning for Eretz Yisrael both literally and in a metaphorical sense permeates the works of both of these great tzadikim. I don't see any contradiction.


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