|This D’var Torah is in Z’chus L’Ilui Nishmas my sister Kayla Rus Bas Bunim Tuvia A”H, my maternal grandfather Dovid Tzvi Ben Yosef Yochanan A”H, my paternal grandfather Moshe Ben Yosef A”H, uncle Reuven Nachum Ben Moshe & my great aunt Rivkah Sorah Bas Zev Yehuda HaKohein.
It should also be in Zechus L’Refuah Shileimah for:
-My father Bunim Tuvia Ben Channa Freidel
-My grandmothers Channah Freidel Bas Sarah, and Shulamis Bas Etta-MY BROTHER: MENACHEM MENDEL SHLOMO BEN CHAYA ROCHEL
-HaRav Gedalia Dov Ben Perel
-Yechiel Baruch HaLevi Ben Liba Gittel
שָׁבוּעוֹת ● Shavuos
“A Tikun for Tikun Leil Shavuos”
Although the “Biblical Shavuos” only discusses Bikurim (First Produce) and speaks nothing of the event of Kabbalas HaTorah, according to tradition, Shavuos occurs during what is known as Z’man Matan Toraseinu, the season of the giving of the Torah. What is the relationship between these two themes?
Very broadly and briefly, both Bikurim and the Matan Torah represent the commitment to and prioritizing of Hashem in our lives. In whatever we do, Hashem is always the first thought. He receives the first cut.
Though we know longer have the opportunity to offer Hashem the first produce of the new wheat crop as we did in Biblical times, we commemorate and relive the experience of preparing for Matan Torah, recommitting ourselves to Hashem and His Torah.
Tikun Leil Shavuos
In that vein, one of the most widespread customs on Shavuos is what is known as “Tikun Leil Shavuos,” literally, the “rectification of the night of Shavuos,” an all-night session of just learning Torah until daybreak. There are even designated texts to be recited which abridge the entire Tanach and Shas for this purpose.1
But, what exactly is this Tikun a rectification for? According to another tradition, on the morning of Matan Torah, the B’nei Yisrael actually overslept.2 Whatever practically occurred that day, apparently, there was a lacking—perhaps in the anticipation or reverence of the impending Matan Torah, one for which rectification was apparently in order. Accordingly, we await Matan Torah all night and greet Hashem on our wedding day in the early morning.3
With that background to the customary “all-nighters” of modern-day Shavuos, one cannot help but wonder if we’ve ever successfully created that Tikun, that rectification. We may have certainly participated in the “all-nighter,” and perhaps we have even spent some of our Shavuos “all-nighters” learning—in addition to snacking of course, as well as snoozing here and there, schmoozing here and there—and I think you are starting to catch my drift.
There is much beauty to our modern-day Shavuos, but how many of us would engage in the “all-nighter” if we didn’t have a Shul full of peers doing the same thing? Would we even open a Sefer on Leil Shavuos if it wasn’t the “thing to do”? Is the earnest Tikun Leil Shavuos something we would attempt if none of our peers would see us and join us in that said Tikun?
A Tikun for our Tikun
The year of COVID-19, social distancing, and quarantine presents us the unique opportunity for that sincere Tikun. It will be the ultimate litmus test, one to which only G-d and we as individuals will know the result. It can be a Tikun for our Tikun,
This is not to say that every individual should necessarily attempt an all-nighter. Everyone should do what is healthiest for his or herself. But, whatever kind of Tikun we engage in, this is the time to do it with sincerity. There is no greater opportunity to internally recommit ourselves to Hashem and His Torah on the level that befits each of us. This Shavuos can be the Tikun of Tikunim.
May we all be Zocheh to create that sincere, needed Tikun and recommit ourselves to Hashem and His Torah, and we should merit to see His unending commitment to us, and we should re-experience His Revelation once again with the coming of Moshiach, Bimheirah Biyomeinu! Have a Great Shabbos and a Chag Shavuos Samei’ach!
-Yehoshua Shmuel Eisenberg 🙂
- Arizal and Shlah
- Pirkei D’Rebbi Eliezer
- Zohar, Emor 98A