Eishet Chayil – Appreciating The Value Of Her Words
“She makes a cloak to sell, and delivers a belt to the peddler.”
Bar Kappara used to sell sayings for denarii. ‘While you are still hungry, eat; while you art still thirsty, drink; while your pot is still hot, empty it out.’ (Berachot 62b) The Imrei Noam explains that Bar Kappara would only say something that he knew people felt was valuable enough to pay to learn.
The Eishet Chayil only shares thoughts she knows are valuable.
The Gra elaborates that Bar Kappara would teach practical lessons in ethical behavior, symbolized by a cloak, as the Talmud (Bava Batra 57b) teaches, “R. Yochanan asked R. Bana’ah, ‘How long should the under-garment of a Talmid Chacham be?’ He replied: “So long that his flesh should not be visible beneath.” The cloak symbolizes modesty and careful behavior.
The cloak made by the Woman of Valor is one of modesty. She does not speak only to be heard or for people to pay attention to her. She speaks only when she sees that people will appreciate and use her wisdom.