Posted by: gruvenreuven | September 10, 2009

Lamed is for Learning

lamedAs our children return back to school this week, there is an interesting correlation between Learning and this week’s Torah Parsha.

In Parshas Nitzavim, Moshe informs the Israelites of their later generations, and what will occur after they are exiled from their land due to drifting away from Hashem via their sins. Here in Devarim 29:27, we come across the phrase “va’yashlichem el eretz acheres” (and he cast them to another land)

In this phrase the Torah is clearly referring to our galus (Exile). In addition, the word “va’yashlichem” literally sticks out in the Torah, as the lamed, which is the tallest letter of the aleph beis, is written unusually larger. So this begs the question as to the significance of the “lamed rabossi” (the enlarged letter “lamed”) of “va’yashlichem”?

In the sefer Torah Hachida (Torah Commentary by the 18th century Rabbi Chaim Joseph David ben Isaac Zerachia Azulai, known by the acronym Chida), the Chida brings an interesting explanation. The Letter “lamed” directly relates to the Hebrew word “limud” (learning). As the Chida points out, if the lamed is removed from the word va’yashlichem, the remaining letters (vav(6)-yud(10)-shin(300)-kaph(20)-mem(40)) have the same gematria as Yakkov’s Brother “Eisav” (Ayin(70)-Sin(300)- Vav(6)) = (376). This comes to teach us, that if the “learning” of Torah departs from us, “Eisav” remains and oppresses us.

Chassidus teaches us that one of the purposes of our galus is to gather the “Sparks of Holiness” that are spread throughout creation. We achieve this through Torah and mitzvos. Since “va’yashlichem” refers to our galus and the large lamed refers to the learning of Torah, this comes to teach us that one of the purposes of our exile is to teach the words of Torah. We should Learn Torah and teach it to our children in order to gather these Sparks of Holiness. In teaching our Children Torah they will come to a recognize of Hashem in a more profound manner. (May he send Moshiach soon in our days to take us out of this Galus)



  1. Interesting and thought provoking way to include children in learning. How important it is to keep learning torah and living mitzvot. And pass on the knowledge to the younger set.

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