Ki Tavo 5776

בס”ד עמ”י עש”ו

 

“And it shall be when you come to the land which Hashem your G-d gives you…you shall take from the first of every fruit of the ground from the Land Hashem has given you and you shall put it in a basket and go to the place that Hashem your G-d will choose” (Deuteronomy 26;1-2). We are commanded to give our first fruit to Hashem as a token of recognition that it all has come and ultimately belongs to him. These verses raise the question of the definitive affirmation the verses portray to the coming of the land. It seems to be taken for granted that we will come to the land, how so?

The reassurance factored herewith is surely a given statement that there will be a time that we shall come to the land. Am Israel belongs in Eretz Israel in a very deep and inseparable way. Whether you have lived there, studied there or went for a short holiday, you most probably felt an overabundance of satisfaction in seeing the productivity and beautiful culture, the advancement and overflowing generating motions of energy taking place. You may have (and most probably had) this thought cross your mind, dreaming to live in Israel despite the (false) “unrealistic dreams” excuse used to burry those aspiring thoughts. We will surely be there one day, it is bound to happen. When someone from the community shares thoughts of wishing to make Aliya we should encourage them in every possible way, as they are doing the right thing not only because Israel is an amazing place to live in but also because of the reassuring factor our Parsha inscribes.

Yet another explanation of “coming to the land” infers to Olam Haba, or rather Olam Haneshamot (the resting place of the souls). The Ohr Hachaim Hakadosh ( Rabbi Chaim Ben Atar) expounds the terms aforementioned to relate to the first fruit as the fruit of our labour and the coming to the land is the recollection of our accumulated efforts in pursuit of a life full of Mitzvot. Rabbi Moshe Feinstein understands the “first of your fruits” to allude to an outlook one can apply. Seeing oneself in the beginning of a journey can entice one to strive for more work and more growth. We can find excelling students that tend to slack off with their studies half way into the year believing they have it figured out. We often find ourselves beginning something great as in teshuva, observance of Mitzvot, and Torah learning and can very easily find ourselves quitting or neglecting to follow through with practices and believes that are congruent to our growth. By seeing oneself in the beginning stages even once an individual is advancing in their observance, one can benefit from the encouraging drive to break through and achieve a life worth living, a life of new beginnings, a life of success.

 

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