Friday, July 20, 2007

Experiencing Greatness

By Rabbi Pinchos Lipschutz

Esteemed rabbonim and Torah leaders, steeped in Torah and middos tovos, eschew the limelight and attempt to live their lives in the background, unheralded and barely noticed.

But we do not let them. There is no vote that decides who is a gadol baTorah and should be a person that gutter Yidden gravitate to. As Bnei Avrohom, Yitzchok, v’Yaakov, we sense it in our neshamos. When we detect a man with true greatness, we flock to him; we are pulled as if by a magnet to bask in the glow of a person steeped in Torah and yiras Shomayim.

We yearn for greatness and seek it out; when it presents itself, we find accomplishment as our quest is fulfilled. We cherish the inspiration that flows from the very being of great people. We examine their actions, learn their divrei Torah and seek to elevate ourselves by emulating their greatness.

Rav Yisroel Elya Weintraub is a man who has toiled in Torah his entire life.

The past 45 years have seen him cloistered in Kollel Chazon Ish in Bnei Brak. His masterful written works and reputation as a true gaon have not diluted his humble way of life.

But when the chance to help save a generation of children in Eretz Yisroel was presented to him, he did not hesitate. The same aged sage whose infirmities prevent him from leaving his house much of the time undertook a trip to America only for that purpose. The same gadol who is rarely seen in public agreed to take part in two very public events. His personal preferences were set aside in his determination to do what he could for the children of Eretz Yisroel.

At the same time, we raise our voices in tefillah for the living embodiment of gadlus baTorah hashoruy b’tzaar and plead on behalf of Moreinu Harav Refoel Shmuel ben Gittel. We beg that the very symbol of ameilus baTorah be spared and that Klal Yisroel benefit from his Torah ad bias goaleinu bekarov.


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