Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

27 Ellul 5760 - September 27, 2000 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly








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Shema Yisrael Torah Network

Opinion & Comment
Understanding these Yemei Rotzon

The time is almost up. We have had a month already, since the beginning of Elul, to prepare ourselves for the upcoming judgment. We have not waited placidly for the time to pass, but have taken an active role in exploiting the days to try to reach the goals of these yemei rotzon.

Everybody calls this period "yemei rotzon," but what do they mean by it? In what sense are these days related to rotzon?

Surely one point is the these are days of appeasement, days when Hashem anticipates and especially welcomes our turning to Him. These are days when He is easy to please, as it were, with our efforts at impressing Him, and it is in that sense that these are yemei rotzon, days of appeasement in which Hashem is quietly willing to be appeased and is even predisposed to attempts of ours. That is surely one sense in which these are called yemei rotzon.

But the word rotzon also has another sense, it can also mean "days of desire." Perhaps these are called days of desire to emphasize the opportunity that Hashem offers us in these days, in which it is easier than in other times to achieve what we most desire: to come close to Hashem. In these final days of Elul, and all the more in the days of aseres yemei teshuva, we can achieve desirable ends that might normally be beyond our reach.

Hashem is, as it were, close to us in these days. If we only try, it is easier than always to come close to Him. We just have to make the first step, we need only call out to Him. With relative ease we can reach this most desirable goal.

On erev Rosh Hashanah, in a shmuess, HaRav Elia Lopian zt"l (20 Elul was his thirtieth yahrtzeit) told over the following insight that he had heard from HaRav Yitzchok Blazer zt"l: "If one commits an aveiro and then he sighs about it, they write and seal in Shomayim as follows: `So-and-so committed aveiro such-and-such -- but with a sigh!' And if someone commits an aveiro without a sigh, then they write that he committed an aveiro without a sigh.

"The difference," concluded HaRav Elia Lopian, "between the punishment of the aveiro with the sigh and the aveiro without the sigh, is much greater than the distance between the shomayim and the eretz."

Even a simple sigh, a pang of remorse, upon committing a sin can mean an enormous difference in the weight of the damage it causes.

How much more of a difference does it make if we do a full teshuva, regretting our mistakes and leaving them behind to return to Hashem wholeheartedly. The posuk tells us that it is close to us, "in your mouth and in your heart to do it" (Devorim 30,14). It may not always be easy, but it is very close and we are assured that we can do it if we have the will, the rotzon, to do so.

Kesiva vechasima tova to all Beis Yisroel.

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