Sunday, July 24, 2011

Follow Your Heart

R' Avrohom HaKohen Pam, Rosh Yeshiva of Mesivta Torah Vodaath, gives the following advice on distribution of tzedakah : "After all is said and done, every person is drawn to certain individuals and institutions which, for some reason, seem to grab his heart. This is how it should be. A person must follow his heart in his service of Hashem.

"This concept is explained at length by the Netziv of Volozhin, in his commentary Haamek Davar [Numbers 15:41], who observes: in Koheles, King Solomon says "Follow the path of your heart and the sight of your eyes" [Ecclesiastes 11:9] - meaning that the service of Hashem is highly individualized and no two people are alike. One person is immersed in painstaking toil in the study of Torah all day long, while another puts tremendous effort into prayer and supplication, and yet a third person throws himself heart and soul into acts of charity and kindness.

All of them are sincerely dedicated to glorifying the Name of G-d, each in his singular way. Even in the quest for Torah knowledge, no two scholars are alike; each has a unique methodology and approach to his studies. Likewise, in the pursuit of mitzvos, everyone has a preference for certain good deeds over others. And in the practice of philanthropy, no two benefactors follow the same path.

"Therefore, if a person comes to ask for advice "What area of Divine service should I emphasize?" the only answer is to paraphrase the words of King Solomon - "Follow the path of your heart" - if your heart is attracted to a certain mitzvah, it is because your celestial soul has recognized this as the mitzvah which is bonded to the root and essence of your being."

Source: Rabbi Avrohom Chaim Feuer

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