web analytics
September 19, 2014 / 24 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
Apartment 758x530 Africa-Israel at the Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York

Africa Israel Residences, part of the Africa Israel Investments Group led by international businessman Lev Leviev, will present 7 leading projects on the The Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York on Sep 14-15, 2014.



Tevye in the Promised Land, Chapter Twenty-Two: A Visit to the Yeshiva

Tevye.500

Embarrassed that the letter writing had taken so long, Hevedke blushed and handed the folded papers to Tevye.

“Give Hava my best,” he said with a shy, hopeful smile.

“Keep up with your studies,” Tevye answered.

“I intend to, don’t worry.”

Tevye nodded. If stubbornness were one of the traits of a Jew, then Hevedke deserved a diploma. No doubt he would be another Rabbi Akiva.

“That wouldn’t be the end of the world,” Tevye thought to himself. Rabbi Akiva had stayed away from his wife for twenty-four years in order to sit and learn Torah. So should it be with Hevedke.

The two men shook hands on the street, and Hevedke returned to the yeshiva.

For Hevedke, an incredible transformation was truly taking place. It was as if he had discovered a completely new world. A world where all darkness and confusion had vanished, where there were only horizons and horizons of light. In the yeshiva, for the first time in his life, he had discovered a true connection to God. To a God who was mysteriously working behind the curtain of history to fulfill the promise He had made to the Jews to bring them back from the four corners of the world to the Land of Israel.

Many nights, Hevedke fell asleep in the study hall, draped over his opened books. Though his thoughts often wandered to Hava, he didn’t want to leave the yeshiva’s hallowed walls. He didn’t want to be far from the shelves of holy volumes, even though they were written in a language which he was still struggling to understand. Suddenly, the world outside seemed like a figment of the imagination, a passing fancy, a deceiving charade, something which could only distract him from the learning that he loved and from the worlds he had discovered in the pages of the Talmudic writings. To the poet who had read all of the works of Tolstoy, Gorki, Hugo, Voltaire, Shelley, Shakespeare, and Keats; who had championed the philosophies of Aristotle, Plato and Locke; and who had clung in blind faith to the Christian gospels, a true revolution was occurring. Like candles held up to the sun, all of the luminance he had once found in the classics disappeared in the blazing light of God’s Torah. A new, incredible the truth became clear. “Hear O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.

Probing thinker that Hevedke was, his spiritual journey was not without clarifications and questions. But the rabbis he learned with always had answers, gleaned from the Sages of the past. The traditions of learning had been passed down generation after generation ever since the giving of the Torah on Sinai. What Hevedke’s keen mind found particularly striking was that, unlike the origins of other religions, the revelation at Sinai had been an historical event, witnessed by two million people, and accepted as fact by all of the world. Both Christianity and Islam had constructed their doctrines upon the foundations of the Jewish religion. Every other philosophy, religion, political movement, or creed originated with man. But Judaism was different. The Torah had been given by God. It was God’s own plan for all of existence. And the nation He had chosen to elevate the world out of its darkness was Israel. The very nation which all of the world hounded and attempted to destroy!

The discovery was so profoundly moving, it overwhelmed all of the young man’s thoughts and all of his waking moments. It entered into his dreams. As his learning progressed, his mind dwelt less and less upon Hava. He still loved her with all of his being for having led him to the real purpose of living, yet that love was now shared by his passionate yearning for God. Now that he had discovered his Creator in the pages of the Talmud, Hevedke longed to be purged in His great healing light. Profoundly ashamed for his beliefs of the past, he cried out to God for forgiveness. He filled up notebooks with poems declaring his love for his Maker. He prayed for hours on end, begging God to come into his life and to open his eyes to the teachings of Torah. But, at first, God didn’t answer. Crestfallen and ready to give up the yeshiva, he had visited Rabbi Kook’s house filled with despair.

About the Author: Tzvi Fishman was awarded the Israel Ministry of Education Prize for Creativity and Jewish Culture for his novel "Tevye in the Promised Land." For the past several years, he has written a popular and controversial blog at Arutz 7. A wide selection of his books are available at Amazon. The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not represent the views of The Jewish Press


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Tevye in the Promised Land, Chapter Twenty-Two: A Visit to the Yeshiva”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Protest rally against Metropolitan Opera staging Death of Klinghoffer on 9/22 at 4:30 pm at the Met.
For Grass Roots Klinghoffer Protest 9/22, Jewish Establishment MIA
Latest Sections Stories

Three sets of three-day Yomim Tovim can seem overwhelming – especially when we are trying to stay healthy.

Plotkin-092614

Is a missed opportunity to do a mitzvah considered a sin?

Teens-Twenties-logo

The sounds and scents of the kitchen are cozy, familiar, but loud in the silence.

Baim-092614-Plate

Everyone has a weakness. For some people it is the inability to walk past a sales rack without dropping a few hundred dollars. For others, it’s the inability to keep their house organized.

His entire life was dedicated to Torah and he became a pivotal figure in the transmittal of the Oral Torah to the next generation.

When you don’t have anyone else to turn to… that’s when you’re tied to Hashem the closest.

While we all go to restaurants for a good meal, it is dessert, that final taste that lingers in your mouth, that is the crown jewel of any dining experience and Six Thirteen’s offerings did not disappoint.

Today, fifty years and six million (!) people later, Israel is truly a different world.

There will always be items that don’t freeze well – salads and some rice- or potato-based dishes – so you need to leave time to prepare or cook them closer to Yom Tov and ensure there is enough room in the refrigerator to store them.

In Uzbekistan, in the early twentieth century, it was the women who wore the pants.

This is an important one in raising a mentsch (and maybe even in marrying off a mentsch! listening skills are on the top of the list when I do shidduch coaching).

While multitasking is not ideal, it is often necessary and unavoidable.

More Articles from Tzvi Fishman

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/books/the-book-shelf/tevye-in-the-promised-land-books/chapter-twenty-two-a-visit-to-the-yeshiva/2013/01/15/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: