Monday, September 25, 2006
Many years ago, after Shabbat Parshat Yitro, the Rav זצ"ל took the time to comment on the fact that, according to Rashi, the Torah's description of Moses sitting in judgement (Ex. 18, 13) occurred on the 'day after Yom Kippur.' This, of course, raises chronological questions regarding the order of the stories in Humash, since the first Yom Kippur was months away from the initial reunion of Moses with Yitro and his family (not to mention that the Torah had yet to be given). The usual explanation is that, in fact, the Torah does not always adhere to strict chronological order when it recounts stories (אין מוקדם ומאוחר בתורה).
The Rav, however, suggested that there is a deeper lesson to be derived from this little detail. The Torah says that Moses sat in judgement on the day after Yom Kippur, because every person who judges (or teaches Torah), or lives one's life must act as if it's the day following Yom Kippur. The sanctity of Yom ha-Qadosh must follow a person into his or her daily existence. That is the idea behind the concept of אסרו חג. Hold tight onto holiness. Feel it after the holy day has departed.
Today, partly because of Rosh Hashanah and partly because of this, this is how today feels to me.
[Thanks to Jameel.]