Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
  Page title
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Lifted Hearts

By Rabbi Daniel Travis

Elsewhere, Chazal state that one should look up while praying: “One who prays should lift up his eyes, as the verse implies [Eichah 3,41], ‘I shall lift up my heart in my hands, to G-d in the heavens.’” Halachah l’maaseh, where must one direct his eyes during prayer?

The Gemara reconciles these two seemingly contradictory statements. “A person who prays should lower his eyes and lift up his heart” (Yevamos 105b). By lowering his eyes a person internalizes his own lowliness before Hashem, and by lifting up his heart he recognizes how exalted Hashem is.

Lifting up one’s heart in his hands implies that his hands are linked to the act of elevating his heart. Since some people have the custom to lift up their hands to the heavens while praying, Chazal warn us that we should not be satisfied with this act alone. Rather, we should simultaneously lift up our hearts, in order that our prayers should be acceptable to Hashem (Rabbeinu Yonah, Berachos 22b).

Practically speaking, what does "lifting up one’s heart" mean? Since there is no physicality in the heavens, a person should consciously remove himself as much as possible from physical pleasures and matters of this world, in order to focus his mind solely on Hashem (Darkei Moshe 94,2).


Text Copyright © 2014 by Rabbi Daniel Travis and Torah.org


 






ARTICLES ON NETZAVIM AND VAYEILECH:

View Complete List

A Poor Man's Prayer
Shlomo Katz - 5759

Moses's Legacy Goes On
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5771

So It Is Written
Rabbi Label Lam - 5765

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Waking Up in Time
Rabbi Label Lam - 5762

Giving in to the Dictates of One's Heart
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5759

Going in the Direction of Teshuva
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5761

ArtScroll

Framed Symbols Part II
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5765

Love your Neighbor as Yourself
Rabbi Yisroel Ciner - 5760

Hide & Go Seek
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5763

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

The Difference Between The Two Tochachas
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5772

Blessing As A Precursor of Teshuva
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5769

God's Covenant
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5770

> A Person Thinks... and G-d Laughs
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5755

Connected
Rabbi Raymond Beyda - 5764

Sputterless
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5758

Our Connection to the Sefer Torah
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5774



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