Friday, December 21, 2007

Light of Torah

Rabbi Elozar said (Kesuvos 111b): One who uses the light of Torah, the light of Torah will revive him; those that do not use the light of Torah, the light of Torah will not revive them.

The Chafetz Chaim explains: Every Jewish person merits a portion in the World to Come. The distinction is as follows: The soul of a person will bask in the pleasure of Gan Eden because it is the soul of a Jewish person; however, regarding the body, which has already become dust, nothing will revive it except for the light of Torah that he learned himself, or if he supported others in their study of Torah and certainly if he provided for his children the ability to learn Torah. Those people that did none of these things will merit a share in Gan Eden, but are in grave danger of not being resurrected.

The Beis Halevi explains: There is a distinction between an article that was used for holiness and one which was used for a mitzvah. An article used for a mitzvah may be discarded immediately after usage because the holiness has ceased upon the completion of the mitzvah. However, regarding an article used for holiness, the holiness remains forever; it must be treated as a holy object and may not be discarded.

The body of someone who learns Torah is considered an article of holiness; even after he dies, the holiness remains and that is what revives him at the time of Resurrection. However, concerning one who does not study Torah, his body is regarded as an article that was used for a mitzvah; when he dies, his body does not retain the holiness and he cannot revive at the time of Resurrection.