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Two Long!

Written by Rabbi Yehoshua Alt, 11/3/2020

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Fascinating Insights—The Sefer (in English)

Two Long!

Observing the length of the Aliyos in Parshios we notice that the first two Aliyos of this week’s Parsha are excessively long, unparalleled anywhere else. What is the reason for this?


Moshe said מי לה' אלי, whoever is for Hashem join me in which only the Levites responded.[1] Perhaps they had second thoughts on this and wanted to act like everyone else. So, it says רבות מחשבות בלב איש, many thoughts are in man’s heart.[2] Let us go into the לב, the center of the letters of איש. Spelling out איש—that is אלפ יוד שין—we notice the middle letters spell לוי. Now it can be understood in the following way: There were many thoughts in the mind of the Levites– should they have the same response as the people or go after Hashem. How does the Pasuk there finish off? ועצת ה' היא תקום—they followed מי לה' אלי. The sin of the עגל is in the second Aliya, which is the Levi’s, of this week’s Parsha. This is because they were not involved in the עגל.[3] Therefore, there is no embarrassment.

Rabbi Alt merited to learn under the tutelage of R’ Mordechai Friedlander Ztz”l for close to five years. He received Semicha from R’ Zalman Nechemia Goldberg. Rabbi Alt has written on numerous topics for various websites and publications. He lives with his wife and family in a suburb of Yerushalayim where he studies, writes and teaches. The author is passionate about teaching Jews of all levels of observance.

[1] Shemos 32:26.

[2] Tehillim 19:21.

[3] Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 78:4. 

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