Monday, July 27, 2015

“Shema Yisrael”

Otzar Nachmani # 230
Collected Talks of Rabbi Nachman Burstein, zatzal
Translated by Dovid Sears

Dated: Tuesday, Parshas Beshalach 5763 / 2003
[Reb Nachman Burstein writes:]

On the previous Shabbos, Parshas Bo, my grandson entered into the bris of Avraham Avinu, a”h, at the Breslover Synagogue in Me’ah She’arim [Jerusalem]. And on that very day a chiddush, a novel insight, occurred to me, through the kindness of Hashem.

It is customary that as soon as the infant is brought to the bris, he is transferred to his father’s arms, and while holding the infant, the father calls aloud, “Shema Yisrael, Hashem Elokeinu, Hashem Echad!”

This corresponds to the well-known teaching of Reb Noson that the entire celebration and purpose of a Jewish wedding is that another Jewish soul should come to the world and declare every day, morning and night, “Shema Yisrael…!”—thus to magnify and sanctify the great Name of the Blessed One.

This is why the father calls out in public, “Shema Yisrael…” while holding the infant, specifically. In this manner he shows that the child was born in order to say “Shema Yisrael…” And since the child is still unable to speak these words himself, his father does so in his place.

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