the importance of learning in earnest

our rabbis teach that the tzaddikim and hachamim of previous generations who are currently dwelling in the heavens have no ability to consume new Torah. they have only the ability to reveal greater depths of the Torah which they revealed in their lifetimes. this really drives home the point that our Torah is what we take with us. [I'm not going to quote the first perek of masechet avodah zarah about the pre-eminence of Torah in the world for reasons of political correctness] everything else that we do has to enable, support, or enhance our Torah learning or else it--whatever we may be involved in--is essentially trivial.

we should all have such a thirst for torah that when we contemplate the end of our lives, we feel empty pangs of hunger at all the torah we intended and desired to learn but for which we never managed to find time.

[there is a paradox here, that Torah cannot be an end in itself, by the very translation of its name, but somehow it is the end of all ends, nothing has meaning or value without it.]

i know this post has nothing of proofs or principles or logic in it. i'm trying to put my feelings (not my reasonings) into words.


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