Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
 
Print Version

Email this article to a friend
Rambam

Rambam

Rabbi Yitzchok Etshalom
Talmud Torah 1:08

8: Every Jewish man is obligated in TT ; whether poor or rich, whether healthy or afflicted; whether a young man or an old man whose strength is gone; even if he was a poor man taking his sustenance from charity and going door-to-door; even a family man is obligated to establish a time for TT during the day and at night; as it says *vehagita bo yomam valayla* (and you shall meditate upon it [Torah] day and night - Yehoshua [Joshua] 1:8).

Q1: Why the list? Once R states that every man is obligated, we know that that includes the rich, poor etc.

YE (Yitz Etshalom) : First of all, he could just be accenting that life circumstances are not an exemption from the Mitzva of TT. This fits with the Mishnayot in Avot which warn against saying: "I will learn when I get a chance" and "Anyone who ignores the Torah due to wealth will ultimately ignore it due to poverty"; Second, each of these particular people has a "reasonable" claim: The rich man is too involved with managing his affairs (and may be very involved in community affairs, to boot); while the poor man has to scrounge for a living -and is constantly worrying about tomorrowUs meal and tonight's shelter; the healthy one can claim that while he is in the prime of physical condition, it is time to pay attention to the outdoors, health etc.; while the afflicted one can claim the opposite; that he is in too much pain to learn. The young man and the old one who is weak have the same dichotomy. R pays extra attention to the poor man who is going door to door for his own sustenance and the family man. This is probably because these two can claim, unlike the first six, that they are busy taking care of themselves/their family and without their involvement in worldly matters, lives (their own, or family members who depend upon them) could be endangered. The Halakha, nevertheless, places the obligation of *k'viat itim* (establishing times for study) on all of them. The rule of *osek bemitzva patur min hamitzva* - (one who is involved in a Mitzva is exempt from another Mitzva) - which is a complex concept with seemingly inconsistent application - does not exempt these people - or any man - from TT.

Q2: The original intent of the command to Yehoshua seems to be "constant learning" - why then is it important to establish times during the day and night - wouldn't it be better to have one longer, more substantial time, during the evening (or the day, if that works better)?

YE: The text of Shma seems to be the hint - *b'shokhb'kha uv'kumekha* (when you lie down and when you rise up). R will address nighttime learning at the end of Perek 3.

Rambam, Copyright (c) 1999 Project Genesis, Inc.

 






ARTICLES ON HAAZINU AND ELUL / ROSH HASHANAH:

View Complete List

Starting From Scratch
Rabbi Pinchas Avruch - 5764

Little Things Make a Difference
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5761

The Kindness of Hashem
Shlomo Katz - 5759

Looking for a Chavrusah?

That Ancient Memory
Rabbi Label Lam - 5771

The Healer Is On-Call
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5770

Molded Future
Rabbi Yisroel Ciner - 5757

ArtScroll

Poor Beginning, Wealthy End
Rabbi Yisroel Ciner - 5760

Play It Again, Shmuel
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5759

Unstoppable Force
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5760

> Elul
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5755

More and More Ourselves
Rabbi Label Lam - 5764

True Foundation
Shlomo Katz - 5758

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

The Power of Love
Rabbi Shlomo Jarcaig - 5763

To Walk With God
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5773

Happy Endings
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5759

Knock, Knock!
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5757



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information