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Go All The Way Up!

What did Moshe Rabbeinu say when he reached the top of Mount Sinai?

"Wow, this looks like a great place for a hospital."

Before the giving of the Torah the Jews are told "Beware of ascending the mountain and touching its edge, whoever touches the mountain shall surely die." [19/12]

The simple meaning of the pasuk is that it was forbidden for the Jewish people to come into contact with Har Sinai. However the Kotzker Rebbe read the pasuk a little differently: Beware of just touching the EDGE of the mountain. One must ascend the mountain of Hashem and reach the TOP. One must strive for greatness and eschew mediocrity!! Mediocrity is own sworn enemy.

Yearn for greatness and you will achieve it!

Love and blessings

Elchanan ben Henna Miriam

that's a nice idea, but doesn't the Torah say in the same Parsha that we shouldn't ascend the mountain?

Dear Lonelymanoffaith,

The Torah is meant to be understood on many different levels - even at times contradictory. This is explained beautifully by Rav Soloveitchik in one of his books [I think Halachic Man] and he even brings examples of contradictory phenomena [that are both true] from the world of science. So of course you are right that the simple meaning is not to ascend however sometimes one MUST ascend. "Mi yaaleh bihar hashem umee yakum bimakom kadsho".

Example: The Zohar says in the weeks parsha that lo tirtzach can be read lo, tirtzach. No, you should kill!! Yes indeed, generally killing is absolutely and completely forbidden but sometimes there is a mitzva to do so. [Amalek etc.]

But you know all that.

All the best!!

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Segula - 40 days at the Kotel

About me

  • I'm Rabbi Ally Ehrman
  • From Old City Jerusalem, Israel
  • I am a Rebbe in Yeshivat Netiv Aryeh.
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