Parshas Naso - Why Did Hashem Create Me?

By BJLife/Moishy Pruzansky

Posted on 06/13/19

Parshas HaShavua Divrei Torah sponsored by
Dr. Shapsy Tajerstein, DPM - Podiatry Care.
(410) 788-6633

Hashem wrote the Torah in order to be our “instruction manual” to life, and wrote it in such a precise manner and with such infinite wisdom that within each and every letter in the Torah, one can extract profound laws and lessons. In fact, whenever even a single letter appears to be “extra” in the Torah, the Gemara (Talmud) indeed extrapolates complex laws from it. Yet, strangely, in this week’s parshah the Torah invests 72 verses to repeat, in great detail, the 12 IDENTICAL gifts that the Nasi of each Shevet (each tribal leader) dedicated to the Mishkan (7:12-84). This begs the question: Why didn’t Hashem simply detail their gift ONCE, and state that it was brought by the twelve Shevatim? What profound message is Hashem conveying to us by repeating the exact same gift that each Shevet brought, 12 individual times (making this the longest parshah in the Torah)?

A man who never had the luxury of going to yeshiva as a child, decided to fulfill his lifelong dream and to study in the Bais Midrash of a local high school, after he retired. Sitting in a room with hundreds of boys who were learning pages of Gemara with relative ease, he was very discouraged and frustrated that learning a “mere” two lines took him many hours. He couldn’t help but feel that his learning did not accomplish anything substantial. He confided his feelings to a Rebee, who comforted him with the following true story: In the early 1950’s, there was a world-renown composer named Arturo Toscanini. There was one symphony in particular that he devoted many years and incredible effort to compose, and it was scheduled to be played overseas by a top orchestra. As fate would have it, Toscanini became ill at the last moment, was hospitalized, and was forced to miss the live performance of the symphony he had worked so hard to create. Instead, it was arranged for him to hear it over a two-way radio. A local reporter visited Toscanini in the hospital to witness what his reaction would be after hearing his masterpiece come to life. Toscanini listened to the entire piece being played, and when it finished, he looked utterly disappointed. “It was clearly missing a violin!”, he complained to the nearby reporter. The reporter was quite shocked that Toscanini could possibly notice the absence of a single violin, especially considering the fact that, in addition to the many other instruments, there were typically 20-30 violinists in a symphony. How could he possibly notice a single one missing? The reporter did some research and, to his surprise, sure enough one violinist got sick and couldn’t make it.

The Rebee concluded, "Hashem is the world’s composer and we are His hand-picked orchestra. Every single instrument that a composer places in his symphony adds significant and distinct beauty to the melody. Similarly, every single human being that Hashem creates has the ability to add significant and distinct beauty to the song of our nation, in their own unique way. Each and every one of YOUR individual mitzvos are ESSENTIAL. When YOU make a bracha, daven, etc. it adds to Hashem's glory in a way that no one else's words possibly could, and if one day you “wouldn’t show up”, it would affect the symphony of our entire nation. Your “small” mitzvos and words of Torah are as necessary and important in Hashem’s grand orchestra as even the greatest Gedolim (Torah giants)"!

The reason why Hashem invested so many verses to repeat, in great detail, the identical gifts that the Nisi’im brought was in order to demonstrate this foundational understanding: our actions, which may appear identical at times, are in fact, FAR from the same. Each person’s mitzvos accomplish a unique and individual goal and effect that NO other person can create. If your mitzvah wouldn’t add anything, Hashem would not have needed to create you and place you within His Master symphony; But He did, which greatly testifies to the fact that although your actions, at times, may appear similar to everyone’s else, they accomplish something truly unique and special. Although it may look like the 12 Shevatim brought identical gifts, Hashem is letting us know that they each accomplished their own entirely UNIQUE and virtuous results, and so do we*!

Living Inspired

Hashem understood that since our nation is so vast, it may be difficult to internalize the fact that our individual mitzvos can be so valuable and accomplish its very own and unique purpose. However, so paramount is this understanding that He invested 72 verses to clearly illustrate this point outright in the Torah.

He didn’t stop there either. The Mishnah asks why Hashem gave each human being his own unique appearance, down to his own one of a kind fingerprints? Why was this necessary? The Mishnah answers, in essence, that just as a painter who paints a one of a kind painting will proudly mark it with it’s own unique serial number, so too Hashem gave you a unique appearance, in order to remind you that you are not “just another Jew doing Mitzvos". Rather, you are an incredibly necessary part of creation and not a single other person on the planet can accomplish what you can with your individual “simple” mitzvos. The Mishnah concludes that internalizing this is not merely “extra credit”. Rather, so important is this understanding that you have a concrete obligation to internalize that Hashem would have created the entire world just for your mitzvos, and that your actions contribute something distinct and special (Sanhedrin 37a).

May we always stay vigilantly aware of how unique we are, how valued each mitzvah we do is to Hashem, and, by performing our mitzvos, accomplish the truly unique mission that we were created to accomplish.


*- See Ohr Gedalyahu (first essay on Rosh Hashana), who proves the concept that our actions accomplish distinct and individual results from the fact in the time of the Great Flood, man’s sinful actions caused even the animals to sin. However, the few animals who were saved on the ark were the creatures who never sinned. With all the other animals sinning due to man’s influence, why were these animals the exception? Why didn’t they sin like the rest of the animals? The Ohr Gedalyahu explains that these animals represented the portion of the world that responded solely to Noach’s actions. He explains that we learn from here that we each have our own unique portion of the world which is directly affected solely by our individual actions.