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NCSY Camp Sports Dvar Torah!

Dear parents and NCSYers,
The time has finally come! That’s right folks, we have a dvar torah form an NCSYer! (roaring applause). Please keep your hands and feet inside the vehicle as we are dazzled (and maybe razzled?) by a dvar torah from the Bluminator, Eitan Blumstein:

In this week’s Parsha, Yaakov Avinu flees from his father’s home in Be’er Sheva and starts his journey to Charan. On his way, he stops overnight at Har Ha’Moriah. There, he dreams of a ladder that was “Mutsav Artsah (rooted in the ground) Verosho Magia Ha’Shamaimah” (its top reached heaven), and “Malachim Olim V’Yordim Bo” (angels were climbing up and down it).

As I was studying this section of the Parsha, I was struck by a number of questions. What is the significance of the ladder? Angles that can fly certainly do not need the aid of a ladder! What can we learn from the fact that it was “rooted” in the ground, but its top reached all the way to heaven?

The Bereishis Rabbah answers that this ladder represented Har Sinai. It being rooted in the ground refers to the bottom of the mountain, and its top reaching heaven refers to the top of the mountain, which had fire, thunder, and lightning. The angels climbing up and down were none other than Moshe and Aharon, who got the Torah from atop the mountain and brought it down to earth. Why did Yaakov Avinu receive this vision of Har Sinai on his journey toward the house of Lavan?

Hashem was emphasizing the idea of taking the Torah which is “Magia Ha’Shamaimah” (reaches heaven) and bringing it down to “Mutsav Artsah” (rooted in the ground). This is the principle of living by the Torah no matter where you are. Yaakov Avinu specifically needed this reminder of bringing the ideals of Torah down to Earth on his way to the house Lavan. As we know, Lavan’s house was an environment that would pose a threat to Yaakov Avinu’s Torah principles. This is why he needed this reminder now.

This idea is exemplified beautifully through Perek 1 Mishna 2 in Pirkei Avos. The Mishna says “Lo Hamidrash Hu Ha’Ikar, Ela Ha’Maseh” (study is not the main objective, rather, action is). This means that one should not just learn Torah, but practice his learning by bringing the Torah into one’s everyday affairs and becoming a better individual in the Jewish community as a result of it. Learning torah is an important part of Jewish life, but one must remember that it is most significant when it is infused into one’s life.

May we all merit to act upon and become better people through our Torah learning.

Have a wondrous Shabbos!

P.S. If anyone would like to write a dvar torah for the weekly e-mail, please contact ydeutscher@gmail.com. There will be an awesome prize in camp next summer for any NCSYer who writes one!

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