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There are certain practices that might be interpreted as a deviation from the characteristic atmosphere of our Kehilla. We are concerned with the custom that calls for vigorous “mitzvah dancing” during the festive wedding meal but does not provide an opportunity for a single D’var Torah (either under the chuppah or during the meal). This practice directly contrasts with the admonition of our Sages, which characterizes any meal, particularly a festive one, as a “meal of the dead” if it is not accompanied by words of Torah (Pirkei Avos 3:4).

Indeed, when was the last time you attended a “frum” chassunah at which a d’var Torah was given? Have we lost sight of the spiritual aspect of a chassunah at the expense of good eating, lively dancing, loud music and who knows what else?

Dr. Yitzchok Levine
Brooklyn, NY

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Editor’s Note: Dr. Levine writes the popular “Glimpses Into American Jewish History” feature that appears in the first issue of each month.

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