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Friday, February 29

The Weekly Shtikle - Vayakheil

    In this week's parsha, (35:30-35) Moshe Rabbeinu informs B'nei Yisroel that Betzalel will be in charge of overseeing the construction of the Mishkan. He states that HaShem has instilled in him a special spirit of wisdom and understanding. After explaining this wisdom in more detail, Moshe adds (35:34) "Ulhoros nasan belibo," and He has placed in his heart the ability to teach. It was not sufficient for Betzalel to be familiar with all the crafts necessary for the construction of Mishkon. He needed to be able to educate others so that they may participate as well.

    In examining this pasuk more thoroughly, there are two very important insights into education which may be extracted from this simple phrase. The first is that no wealth of knowledge ever guarantees the ability to teach. Betzalel was brought to the highest levels of knowledge and understanding but that was not enough. In addition to the wisdom vested in him by HaShem he also required a separate Divine inspiration for the ability to properly pass that knowledge on to his disciples. The art of teaching is a necessary wisdom unto itself. This point is made by the Ohr HaChayim and R' Moshe Shternbuch on this pasuk.

    This pasuk also teaches us that while other areas of wisdom are more focused on the brain, the essence of teaching comes from the heart. It is not even enough for one to spend day and night studying the art of teaching. No matter how much knowledge one is able to amass, without a "teaching heart" it just doesn't work. Therefore in addition to enriching Betzalel's intellect with the wisdom and knowledge to perform all the necessary tasks, HaShem instilled in him all the inspiration of the heart to enable to him to educate the rest of the nation.

Have a good Shabbos. Mishenichnas Adar Marbim beSimchah! (Application to Adar I subject to dispute)

Eliezer Bulka


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