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Beit Midrash: Torat Chessed Print E-mail
Written by Machberes Avodas Hashem   

writingsThe 5th of Nisan is the Yahrtzeit of Rav Shneur Zalman Ashkenazi of Lublin, Rav of Polotzk, Lublin; author of Toras Chessed (1830-1902). From the Introduction to Torat Chessed: One trembles before one writes down his words of Torah. We are permitted to write down the Oral Law only because it is a time of emergency. We have permission to write books only if our intention is to preserve Torah, not if our intention is to bring honor to ourselves. Rabbi Chaim Vital taught that one who writes a book only to gain fame is compared to those who participated in building the Tower of Babel; they are interested only in making a name for themselves.


I write this book to battle those who are teaching Torah with the wrong intentions. I write to remind people that one may write only for the glory of God and not for his own honor.

We are also taught that one who studies Torah and does not teach it has no real pleasure from it. There is no greater sense of loss then to study Torah and have no one with whom to share it. Because I am so busy I have not had the privilege of raising students I can teach. Therefore I also write these words in order to fulfill my obligation to teach the Torah I have studied.

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